Monday, March 12, 2007

Friends of the Experience #4

It's a cross country style line-up today with Midwest, East, South, and West all represented. My thanks going out to Jennifer in Chicago, Vince in LA, Steven in Texas, Travis in Vermont, and Paul in Ohio for their kind words and donations to the site's March fundraiser.

Jennifer is an avid knitter --you can see her creations at her own blog. Like many die hard moviegoers she got hooked on less conventional fare while in college. She writes:
One of the most pivotal moviegoing experiences for me was seeing The Cook The Thief His Wife and Her Lover which so beautifully joined an artistic sensibility with a poetic and dark story. Saw it three times in the first week of its release. While I love a good realistic drama, what really excites me most about movies is those where I see something extraordinary that I couldn't see in any other medium, where I can immerse myself in the story while at the same time marvelling at the storyteller's art.
Well said Jennifer. I've only seen Peter Greenaway's controversial arthouse hit once and the thing I remember most about it was the color shifts. Oh, and Helen Mirren --she's been a queen (of cinema) for a long time actually. I should program myself a whole Greenaway festival because I even like the one no one else does ... 8 ½ Women.

Vince is a longtime reader and he requires rewatchability in his favorite film
It's about serial killers, so I don't know what that says about me, but I still love it. It's a film that achieved a perfect balance of dramatic earnestness and high camp, in my opinion, which is rarely seen, and went on to a surprise win of Best Picture ... The Silence of the Lambs.

Most of my favorite films came from the mid-80's to early 90's, which coincided with my pre-teens and teens, though. I'm still waiting for a new release to come along and sweep me away.
Isn't that just the sad plight of we movie obsessives: always waiting in the dark to be swept into a new world? More often than not our feet stay firmly planted on the ground but it's completely worth it for the possibility.
Steven was quick to contribute but slow to name one favorite on account of: too much pressure. I hear him loud and clear... (I actually hate the question, too. I have hundreds) Steven elaborates
I have different favorites for different moods. The Color Purple when I need to cry, Contact when I need to think, The Princess Bride when I want to feel loved, Clue when I need to laugh and Pee-Wee's Big Adventure when I need mindless entertainment.
He also tells me that he started reading TFE due to the Oscar coverage but now reads year round. Which is exactly what I like to hear. Sure, the site and blog are more singleminded during awards seasons but movies are 24-7 and loving them should be too.
Travis discovered the film experience through Joe Reid who some readers will know as a frequent guest blogger here, whose work can also be found at television without pity. Travis' favorite:
Dr. Strangelove -- the poster to which is hanging in my office. I show parts of the film to my students every semester, and not only is it of educational value, but I STILL laugh at the War Room scenes even though I've seen them at least a dozen
Ack. another film I need to see again. The War Room scene is the only one I remember! I saw the film way back in high school.

Finally, there's Paul who also has his own blog Opal Films --he's currently trying to work through a top 100 style list. Good luck! He also contributes to the nifty Screengrab and passes along a note to which I relate more than I'd like to
My favorite movie is Belle de Jour, which is a film that I'm so close to and so kinda intimidated by that I'm hestitant to write much about it. That's odd, I think, since I have no trouble writing on and on about other movies I love, particularly 8 Women.
I have the same problem. I'm trying to beat it down by forcing myself to write more positive reviews: hence the personal canon project. But it is harder to write about the transcendant than it is to write about the problematic. And FWIW: Belle de Jour is incredible. If any of you reading haven't seen it --Up to the top of your rental queue immediately. Submit!

What About You, Commenters?
Have you ever seen the same movie three times in one week?
Does your favorite movie depend on your mood. Or is it unchanging?
Are you waiting for a new release to sweep you away?


Beau said...

I believe the only instance where I've seen a film in theaters three times in one week's span was 'The Return of the King'. Also the first film I've ever officially skipped school or a class for.

I can't even begin to choose a favorite film, quite honestly. Much as I love my "Before Sunset", there's a wide array of films and film genres that I could never bear to exclude. 'Sunset' just happens to be the one that first jumps to mind whenever I'm asked about a particular favorite of mine.


i remember seeing a few things twice in one week when i was a teenager but the only thing recently was Spider-Man 2

but i'm not sure i've ever seen something three times in one week. that's dedication for you

DL said...

Is it just me or does Catherine Deneuve look a LOT like Mira Sorvino in that picture from Belle de Jour??

Anonymous said...

:feeling so bad i can't donate right now: :broke: :gonna make an effort:

I've seen Anthony Mann's The Man From Laramie 4 times a week. It looks like a western, but it's a greek-tragedy look into family ties...

- cal roth

Barry said...

I watched Stuart Little 3 times in 1 week. I can never get tired of that movie. It gets fresher and funnier every time I see it.

My fave movie of all time and will always be Titanic. Just a classic movie.

Glenn Dunks said...

I saw Moulin Rouge! three times in one week (and six times in all). First on opening night with a friend. Then with my mother. And then me and my mum dragged my dad to it.

Also, about the writing positive/negative stuff. I agree that writing about negative stuff is easier because you know what is wrong. But, with movies that are really truly great I think it's hard to write about them because it's hard to put into words the feelings that you feel.

I've tried to write a full on proper review of All That Jazz for months and months but can never get anything down other than a simple word: Perfection.

WickedScorp said...

Casino Royale four times in two weeks.


Beau ---that's um, 10 hours or something. what a trooper

DL --hopefully that will be the last time you see the resemblane ;) i never thought id hear them compared

Barry -- SL3? are you pulling our collective leg or do you really love it? I love Titanic too.

cal --i'm embarrassed that i've never heard of that one

Kamikaze --I saw MR! 6 times in theaters too (a record this decade at least for me) i think... but no more than once a week.

wickedscorp --i would've seen that more than once except for that last half hour which was a trial for me. LOVE the movie otherwise though

Anonymous said...


Apparently I'm the only one that thought it was funny in 1995. Saw it twice in theaters and now watch it whenever I need to drink/laugh/practice my dance moves. That VIP Edition is hot shit.


i'm going to do a showgirls piece soon

cosmicdust said...

i can watch Kurosawa Akira's and Yasujiro Ozu's films over and over again. Oh! not to forget persian films like Children of Heaven.

Recently, I have seen Lives of Others three times...

Jason Adams said...

I saw Jurassic Park in the theater six times its opening week.

Anonymous said...

"The Empire Strikes Back" the first week of its release. Camped out the first night, followed by my final in English 430 (Shakespeare) the next morning. Best final I ever slept through.


JA -tell me you were like 11 or something...

Jason Adams said...

Er, JP came out June 11th 1993 (I still have that date memorized!), and I was... 15. Barely; I turned 16 a month later. I feel no shame! By the time it left theaters I saw it 10 times.

And then when they rereleased it I saw it two more times.

Yeah... I liked it. A lot.

Paul C. said...

JA~~ don't feel guilty about JURASSIC PARK. I'm your age, and I saw it roughly as many times as you did in theatres. Heck, when my local multiplex brought it back last year for a midnight screening, I saw it again. It's not the kind of movie I'd buy on DVD- the film's drawbacks really stick out when you watch at home. But on the big screen, it still cooks.

Paul C. said...

DL- I'm not sure I agree with your wording there. More that Sorvino looks like Deneuve. On a very good day, anyway.

Anyway, to answer one of the questions posed, I think my record for watching a movie the most times on the big screen in a limited amount of time (stops to catch a breath) is 8 WOMEN, 4 times in 12 days. I would've gone more times except that it wasn't doing good business at the local multiplex, so it got the axe. But I did my part to keep it going, including seeing it twice on opening day.

Movies on video, however, are a different story- when I discover something I love, I watch over and over again. I think I watched ANNIE HALL 10 times in a month my senior year of high school.

But the weirdest one I can remember was a little sleeper called FUNNY BONES with Oliver Platt, which I rented after finding him hilarious in BULWORTH and promptly watched four times in a five day rental period. Then I recommended it to my friends and they all hated it. That more or less clued me in to the fact that my tastes in movies were, well... different.