Well, it’s been a few months since my last post. This is primarily because I’ve been extremely busy with many things, least of all moving to a new city. So that’s my excuse, but I still feel like I should apologize for not keeping up to date with things. Anyways, I’m returning to the blog-sphere once again and my first post is my entry in a blogathon that I nearly missed. Mettel Ray Movie Blog is hosting (or has hosted) a blogathon that I just had to be a part of. To see her ‘movie alphabet’ see the link at the end of the post.
Part of what makes movie blogs so interesting are the personal opinions involved, so while constructing my movie alphabet I tried to make a list very specific and personal to my own preferences. Of course, I couldn’t fit all my favorite films and filmmakers in, but at the very least, all I wanted to do was provide another portrait of my relationship with cinema.
#- The 400 Blows
Francois Truffaut’s debut film seems to have started the New Wave and it just might be my favorite French film to come out of that time, if not of all-time. (Directed by Francois Truffaut)
A- American Graffiti
The music, the cars, the Pharaohs, Wolfman Jack, Ron Howard, Richard Dreyfuss. American Graffiti is great old-fashioned entertainment. (Directed by George Lucas)
B- Marlon Brando
My all-time favorite film actor. He is unforgettable in nearly every movie I’ve seen him in: The Men, A Streetcar Named Desire, and On the Waterfront in his earlier years; The Godfather and Apocalypse Now in the later part of his career.
Why is this movie not talked about more!? This is an outstanding crime thriller and one that I’ve found plays even better late at night. (Directed by Michael Mann)
D- Driving Miss Daisy
There are a ton of films that start with “D” that are better than this one, but there’s something about the gentle sweetness of this movie that has always sucked me in. Because of some memories I have with the film, I’ve selected Driving Miss Daisy. Tandy and Freeman are a priceless duo here. (Directed by Bruce Beresford)
E- Elwood P. Dowd
If you haven’t seen James Stewart’s performance as Elwood in Harvey, then you are definitely missing out. Stewart said it was one of his favorite roles to act and it certainly is one of my favorites to watch.
F- French films
No other country’s film industry excites me more than France’s. The French have embraced film about as much as Americans have and likewise, they have done much to advance the art of film.
G- George C. Scott
Another master actor who displayed a lot of versatility and embraced challenges: The Hustler, Dr. Strangelove, Patton, The Hospital, and A Christmas Carol.
H- Alfred Hitchcock
Obviously, he was an extraordinary filmmaker. Everyone could use a little Alfred Hitchcock in their lives.
I- Into the Wild
The movie is a journey of breathtaking beauty and fascinating philosophical conversations. It captures the human in all of us. (Directed by Sean Penn)
J- Javier Bardem
Bardem won a well-deserved Oscar for one of my favorite movies, No Country for Old Men, and since seeing him in that film, I’ve discovered his work in a few others: Collateral, Biutiful, and Skyfall.
K- Stanley Kubrick
Few directors seemed to make less mistakes. Stanley Kubrick is the master filmmaker, conquering all genres and standing firm throughout his decades of work.
L- Life of Pi
At this moment, Ang Lee’s latest feature sits at the top of my list of favorite films of 2012. Of course, I do have a good amount of movies to catch up on before the list will be released, but I still really loved this movie. (Directed by Ang Lee)
This isn’t the Fritz Lang silent classic that I’m talking about. Nonetheless, this Metropolis is every bit as ambitious and even more visually enchanting. Few films are so immersive and completely atmospheric. I’ve seen Spirited Away and I’ve seen Grave of Fireflies, but this is the anime film that made the genre ‘click’ for me. (Directed by Rintario)
N- No Country for Old Men
I’ll watch this movie anytime, anywhere. I love every moment of it. (Directed by the Coen brothers)
O- On the Waterfront
A great film with great performances from Marlon Brando, Karl Malden, Lee J. Cobb, and Eva Marie Saint. One can’t go wrong with Elia Kazan’s morality tale. (Directed by Elia Kazan)
P- The Passion of Joan of Arc
I consider this the greatest silent film of all-time. Of course, I haven’t seen every silent film out there, so I’ll never know for sure, but I have yet to see a better one. (Directed by Carl Theodor Dreyer)
Q- Quiz Show
A dialogue-driven drama based on a true story, Quiz Show is as good as these type of films come. Ralph Fiennes and John Turturro are both wonderful here. (Directed by Robert Redford)
R- The Red Shoes
Simply one of the most powerful films I’ve ever seen. Forget that it centers on ballet. It’s really about all the arts. (Directed by Michael Powell)
S- Star Wars
The franchise has probably gone a bit too far, but I grew up with the Star Wars movies, so they will always have a place in my heart. (Directed by George Lucas)
T- The Trial
Orson Welles adapts Franz Kafka with movie star Anthony Perkins. Welles said this was his best film. I’ll take it over Citizen Kane on most days. (Directed by Orson Welles)
U- Uncle Boomnee Who Can Recall His Past Lives
A rare breed of film from Thailand that haunts and enchants. This is one of the great films of the twenty-first century so far. (Directed by Apichatpong Weerasethakul)
V- Vincent and Jules
Everybody’s favorite movie assassins.
W- Wes Anderson
Anderson is a visual genius. The quirk of his films has gathered an impressive following. It’s not hard to see why when you watch Moonrise Kingdom or Fantastic Mr. Fox.
X- Professor X
I’m not a fan of the X-Men films and I haven’t seen the X Files, so my options on this letter are very limited. I’m picking Charles Xavier simply because he is a likable character in the series.
Kurosawa’s thundering samurai flick is a must-see and it would be an excellent introduction to Japanese cinema for anyone. (Directed by Akira Kurosawa)
Zombieland is a hilarious blend of horror and comedy in the tradition of Shaun of the Dead. (Directed by Ruben Fleischer)
Thanks for taking the time to scan my alphabet, and thanks to Mettel Ray Movie Blog for letting me participate!