ANNOUNCEMENT TYPE THING I GUESS:
So I've been thinking about trying to start a little experiment in this thread, one that I think would really help get some more interesting discussions going (beyond what we watched last night and "this movie was good/bad/okay/better than this/worse than that" value judgments) and mix things up a bit, but more importantly one that would broaden all our tastes and introduce us to great movies we might never have watched otherwise and other good shit like that.
I'm talking about starting a club-wide Movie of the Week.
Here's how I see it working: each week one of us, chosen at random from anyone who participated in the previous week's discussion (and who hasn't gone yet, until we have some sort of a rough rotation going), picks a movie and announces it in this thread on (let's say) Sunday night/Monday morning. Everyone who wants to participate watches that movie at some point during the week, and on (let's say) Saturday or Sunday we try to devote all our conversation in the thread to that movie. Maybe the person who picked the movie can kick things off with a question to get the ball rolling or something like that.
Does this seem like something you guys would be interested in? If so, feel free to get involved when I try out a tentative first MotW next week (and also feel free to make any other suggestions about how we should run this thing). Since this is the first week and there's no rotation yet (and because I'm incapable of making decisions), rather than just pick a movie and reveal it next week I'll list seven options here now so you guys can tell me what you think about them before I decide. So here they are, picked somewhat at random from a list of both personal favorites and stuff I haven't watched yet but really want to:
Sunrise: A Song of Two Humans (Murnau, 1927, USA)
The 400 Blows (Truffaut, 1959, France)
Badlands (Malick, 1973, USA)
Stalker (Tarkovsky, 1979, USSR)
Wings of Desire (Wenders, 1987, West Germany/France)
Chungking Express (Wong, 1994, Hong Kong)
Boogie Nights (Anderson, 1997, USA)
And just for posterity, here's a couple guidelines I think we should all probably try to follow in picking our movies so as to get the most out of this thing:
1. Try to pick something that's conducive to discussion.
But I think it's important to stress that "conducive to discussion" doesn't have to mean some serious, portentous arthouse film. There's all kinds of great stuff we can talk about with genre movies, from action to comedy to horror to whatever. Hell, feel free to pick a movie you think is outright bad if you want, as long as it's bad in interesting, discussion-worthy ways.
Basically anything that isn't obviously a mercenary cash-grab or pure exploitative trash should be fair game.
2. Try to pick something that all or most of us haven't seen yet.
Of course we have no way of knowing for sure who's seen what (though a bunch of us have Letterboxd accounts, which could help), so just to be safe we're probably better off not picking huge blockbusters like Star Wars and Jaws and The Dark Knight, obvious "classic" list-toppers and American canon mainstays like Citizen Kane and Casablanca and 2001: A Space Odyssey, or perennial cult dorm room wall decorators like Fight Club or Pulp Fiction or The Boondock Saints.
Besides, the whole point of this thing is kind of to...
3. Try to branch out.
Let's try to get out of our comfort zones and see something truly new. Pick something from before the '60s. Pick something that isn't in English (bonus points if it's not from Western Europe or Japan either). Pick something from a genre where we're not all already fans and experts. Pick something made outside the studio system, or something ignored by audiences, or something unfairly panned by critics.
At the very least, your MotW should probably be from a different decade and genre (and maybe country if we can help it) than the last one (unless you're specifically trying to juxtapose or complement the previous week's movie in some way, which would be awesome).
Let's use this as an opportunity to broaden our horizons and shit. For my part I know I'm anticipating/dreading the first horror movie that gets picked, since that's a genre I know almost nothing about.
And that's about it. Hopefully we can all turn Movie of the Week into a staple of the Cinema Club and watch a fuck-ton of great movies while we're at it.
At 1/12/14 10:16 PM, Natick wrote:
it's not their best film by any means
I dunno, it's rocketed pretty quickly towards the top of my list and I imagine it'll only improve with age.
anyway, just watched blazing saddles for the first time and thought it was mediocre. don't recommend spaceballs or young frankenstein to me, i already saw them years ago and couldn't figure out what all the fuss was about
Oh yeah, also I guess here's my best-of list for 2013, seeing as the year is actually over now and I've gotten to see a good number of the things I wanted to (though there's still so much I haven't seen; this has been a fantastic year for movies).
1. The Act of Killing
2. Inside Llewyn Davis
4. Frances Ha
5. The World's End
6. Spring Breakers
7. Computer Chess
8. The Wolf of Wall Street
9. 12 Years a Slave
11. The Wind Rises
12. Upstream Color
And while we're at it, what was the worst new movie you guys saw in 2013? For me it was probably Elysium, a profoundly stupid trainwreck of a movie and a hugely disappointing follow-up to the tight, clever District 9. Though Star Into Darkness was also pretty dire aside from its neat opening setpiece, telling not so much an actual story as a loosely connected series of meaningless plot twists and winking callbacks to other, better Star Trek movies.
Also I guess I'll just @ mention a bunch of Cinema Club regulars/semi-regulars/Letterboxd people/whoever to make sure they see the MotW stuff (@ mentions are a thing now, right? I definitely got a notification for one a while ago, or maybe I'm just getting old and out of touch...):