Sunday, November 27, 2016

College Movie Project: Saved! and Closer

Both of these movies have in common the fact that I used to force people to watch them...well not really force but I would always tell my friends who hadn't seen them that "you have to see it!" and then we'd end up in my dorm watching them...and me watching them watch them to make sure they loved them both as much as I did...

Summer 2004: Saved!

Movie Facts:
Directed by Brian Dannelly
Google Genre: Drama Film/Coming of Age
Movie Tagline: Lead us not into temptation.
Actors: Jena Malone I love her. She's sweet and good and totally likes like she could be Mary-Louise Parker's kid.
Mandy Moore she's great in this, this was back when she still had to contractually sing in all her movies.
Macauley Culkin ahhhhhhhhhh!
Patrick Fugit hey it's the kid from Almost Famous as an awkward teenager! 

Before Rewatch: 

The man had never seen this one! I told him that it came out before my sophomore year in college and when the DVD came out I made all my friends watch it. This is true. I remember very specifically watching it on the floor of my huge dorm room with random friends and everyone loving it as much as I did. I had a lot of friends who went to christian high schools and they enjoyed it. I remember also having a conversation with my choir director Dr. Boyer about it. He LOVED the line after Hilary-Faye throws the bible at Mary and Mary says "This is not a weapon you idiot". Still a great scene.

After Rewatch:

Such a great little teen movie. I don't find it as painful to relive as I do Garden State. For some reason this holds up better for me. I still think the themes and situations the students go through are poignant and important. I don't really think I read anything new or different into is than I did 12 years ago though. I think it's fun that the parents are having the same struggle as the kids, that's always a nice parallel. 

I always laugh a lot but the scene that makes me laugh when I remember it is when Macauley Culkin and Eva Amurri (aka Susan Sarandon's daughter) are having coffee and see Mary coming out of the Planned Parenthood Eva says "there's only one reason good christian girls go to the Planned Parenthood" and Macauley says "She's planting a pipe bomb?"! OMG I die. I love that moment. SO funny. 

I also love the carpenter Jesus at the beginning when Mary hits her head in the pool. I love Mary-Louise Parker as the ditzy oblivious mom and her future Weeds co-star Martin Donovan they just look so good together. 

I will also always wonder how anyone could smuggle a frozen turkey out of a Piggly Wiggly in only a tube top and mini skirt...seriously Eva how?!

Overall- it's such a cute easy movie and I think beside the Incredibles it the last of the semi-happy movies I have on my College Movie project list. I'm pretty sure the rest are seriously depressing and dark- yay! 

Fall 2004: Closer

Movie Facts:
Directed by Mike Nichols
Google Genre: Drama Film/Romance (yah...okay...)
Movie Tagline: If you believe in love at first sight... Take a closer look.
Actors: Natalie Portman I love her. I loved her hair so much I took a picture of her form this movie to my hairdresser and said I want this and then had that haircut for almost 7 years. But also I love her. 
Julia Roberts Love her. I don't normally love her but in this I love her.
Jude Law he's great and frustrating but works great.
Clive Owen LOVE. I fell in love with him in this movie...not the character though he's a douche.  

Before Rewatch: 

I've easily seen this movie a hundred times. I'm pretty sure I've watched it at least once a month since I got the DVD. I find it so honest and awful and terrifying and beautiful and all those things. In 2004 when it came out I saw it in Theaters with my best friend over Christmas break. We both loved it. I think after college it took on a different meaning for me. I was something Alice and sometimes Anna. I was harsh and critical of love. Every horrible breakup and I'd come back to this movie and find comfort, everyone is terrible...even though Alice lies she's the most honorable one in the bunch. Ann is awful, Larry is a douche, and of course Dan is just sad and pathetic. So Alice is the heroine. 

After Rewatch:
I mean she tells him right up front, exactly what she does. Dan should not be surprised how Alice leaves him. Larry shouldn't try to get Anna back, dude just leave her alone OMG. Dan cut Alice loose sooner! What is wrong with you people? But still it's honest, these sort of things happen in relationships, people do horrible things to one another. I feel like This movie honestly helped me shield myself a litte. It probably helped me shield myself too much in some situations but anyone could be an Alice or Anna or Dan or Larry out there and all four of them are dangerous characters in their own way. If you want to believe in love that lasts none of them are good examples of that. They all look at love as so temporary...Alice will love you till she doesn't- it's terrifying. Dan will fall in love with someone just by looking at them and doesn't care if he's with someone else or not...poor Ruth. Anna cheats...Larry cheats and wants to have sex in exchang for a divorce- fuck you Larry! It's just cruel and awful but somehow it makes me feel better. So I watch it over and over again and will probably continue to. 

Previous Movie Posts:

College movie project overview
Fall 2006 - Stranger than Fiction
Clerks 2, Lost in Translation, Sideways and V

Thursday, November 24, 2016

My Favorite Gilmore Girls Episodes

Yes I'm 31 and yes I am obsessed with the Gilmore Girls. I was Rory's age during the original run and grew up with her. The show was relatable and funny and real if a bit eccentric and Rory LOVES to read and Lorelai LOVES coffee.  Instant love. I have watched and rewatched the series dozens of times. I have shared the series with many people- friends, family, and unsuspecting significant others (sorry). And even though Rory is probably why I started watching Lorelai is why I continued watching.

So when news of the revival came out not only did I scream, but I then had about 20 people tell me about it because they knew I'd be so I didn't know my friends. I then started listening to the Gilmore Guys podcast that just added to my obsession these last 6 months. It didn't make me love the show any more I still am pretty freakish in my obsession, but it did make me think about it in new and different ways which is totally fun!

So I finished my most recent Gilmore Girls rewatch a little early towards the end of October and then  last week the last Gilmore Guys podcast for Season 7 Episode 22 and still had over a week left before the revival! Then the world almost ended. My family decided we're doing Thanksgiving on Friday- ON FRIDAY OCTOBER 25! The day the new episodes come out! Don't they know that will ruin my life?!?! But that's okay I'll wake up at midnight watch the 6 hours and then make my green beans and go to Thanksgiving...yes I'll be tired but it'll be worth it. SO what to do with my Thanksgiving Day? Watch my favorite 5 episodes you suggest? Okay!

  1. Season 2 Episode 10 The Bracebridge Dinner: I know it's cliche'd but it's fun and snowy and has costumes and lots of townies. All the things you love with a big town shindig episode. Luke and Lorelai early chemistry which is some of their bet early chemistry. Sookie kitchen freak out. Early Jess and Rory chemistry. Emily and Richard looking fabulous- I want Emily's dress suit. It's a fun episode.
  2. Season 3 Episode 9 A Deep-Fried Korean Thanksgiving: Last year I made Hail watch this episode with me while we prepped for Thanksgiving. I've watched this episode probably for 10 years on Thanksgiving. It's so fun. The Gilmore Girls go to 4 Thanksgivings because they have freakish stomachs that allow them to eat the world and never get fat (someone please sign me up). Sookie's Thanksgiving is my favorite she gets drunk because her husband decides to deep fry her organic turkey and she's in denial. It's also one of the best Sookie episodes since her Wedding planning one. The Girls look beautiful and all the sets do too. I love the fall colors. There is a reason they're ending the revival with Fall because it's the Gilmore season. 
  3. Season 4 Episode 2 The Lorelais' First Day at Yale: Copper Boom! Going to college! I remember all these feelings and like Rory I only went to college an hour away from home as well. But it still was sad and I cried when my parents left. But this is fun. Paris, Tana, Yale! It's just a fun feel good episode. AND it changes Gilmore Girls forever- seriously this is a moment in the show where things are never the same because they're not living together anymore. Love.
  4. Season 4 Episode 21 Last Week Fights, This Week Tights: MY FAVORITE EPISODE! Of all time. Lorelai and Luke. LORELAI and LUKE! Renaissance Wedding! Jess! So good. There's a lack of Rory in this one (finals and a bad date) but it's okay because it's all about Lorelai. The Sam Phillips song that Luke and Lorelai dance to is beautiful and makes me cry. This is another episode that changes everything. I would say Season 4 is probably my favorite season, so much build up and potential. But this episode is wonderful and lovely and yay. 
  5. Season 5 Episode 18 To Live and Let Diorama: And I love this episode juts because it's fun. Mr. Twickham dies which isn't the fun part but leads to the creation of the Star Hollows museum and diorama! So Luke has to work with Taylor to help build it and then for the opening Rory and Paris come to town and get drunk with Lane. Fun, fun, fun! It just makes me laugh. The next episode following is also a close 5.5 because it kinda continues where this story is going. 
So not all of these episodes are groundbreaking super important episodes a lot of them are just fun and make me happy. Also I feel like a lot of these besides maybe Last Week Fights, This Week Tights make great introductory episodes to Gilmore if you want to share with friends. LOVE.

The first Gilmore Girls a Year in the Life trailer made me cry and I'm buzzing with anticipation. I will cry so much. I don't think I'll make it 10 seconds. Richard's funeral, all the reunions with the boyfriends. Rory being kinda lost. Lorelai not knowing what happened to her dreams. So many tears! I can't wait.

Saturday, November 19, 2016

College Movie Project: Clerks 2, Lost in Translation and Sideways (and kinda V for Vendetta)

Over the last few weeks the mane in my life has helped me watch quite a few movies for my movie project. With little to no respect for keeping chronology...or even some of my original rules.

Summer 2006: Clerks 2

Movie Facts:
Directed by Kevin Smith
Google Genre: Buddy film(?)/Comedy
Movie Tagline: With no power comes no responsibility. (true)
Actors: Jeff Anderson and Brian O'Halloran which you'll only know from Clerks or other Kevin Smith movies; Rosario Dawson who I guess wasn't a big enough star at the time to realize she should turn this down.

Before Rewatch:
I was slightly annoyed to be watching it out of order, I had plans to watch Clerks on Election night because the very first time I saw it was on election night in 2004 and I had since watched on each subsequent election nights, must less stressful than actually watching the election. But I ignored my type-a-ness to watch it in order.

I told the man how much I loved this movie when it came out and the scene in the jail always made me cry and that it's such a great friend movie. Neither of us had probably seen it in a few years.

After Rewatch:
I didn't cry this time. I still enjoy this movie, it makes me laugh and I do appreciate the mail bonding in jail scene but I don't know. To me the whole situation was just so sad. I feel like because I am now someone who hates when people are miserable in their jobs, I find it personally offensive, I think I didn't appreciate it as much as I used to. I feel like I just didn't find anything redeeming in it really.

My favorite scene is probably the argument about Star Wars and Lord of the Rings, I know people like that even today. Can't we all just get along! I severely dislike the Lord of the Rings because I was tricked into watching 9,000 hours of the extended versions without my knowledge and I will never get those hours of my life back. But I can still appreciate it's place in the world, but yes Star Wars will always be better- suck it.

I probably laughed hardest at the Wanda Sykes cameo and Earthquake.

Overall I really don't care for this movie as much without it's partner. I think when you watch Clerks then Clerks 2 it just makes better sense and you don't feel so shocked by everything. It's probably the first Kevin Smith movie I'd watched in a few years, it's just not high on my rotation list.

Fall 2003: Lost in Translation 

Movie Facts:
Directed by Sophia Coppola
Google Genre: Drama Film/Indie Film
Movie Tagline: Sometimes you have to go halfway around the world to come full circle.
Actors: Bill Murray this was before the big Murray revival right? He's great in this.
Scarlet Johansson is the perfect lost little millennial. The man didn't like her performance, I tried to convince him it was appropriate...I think I failed.

Before Rewatch:
I love this movie! I watch this movie probably a couple times a year and just love it so much. I feel like when it came out I could totally relate to the whole, what am I going to do with this ridiculously expensive liberal arts degree I'm working on! I would have been a Freshman at TLU at the time so I probably still thought it was an awesome idea and I wonder if this made me rethink that...I don't regret my degree but I can relate to the feeling that one might.

After Rewatch:
Where the fuck did those drugs come from? OMG I did not remember that drug scene at all! I remember the scene but I did not remember that they took drugs, I literally have watched this movie dozens of times and had never noticed it. This probably all goes back to me being so incredibly naive when it comes to drug culture but seriously did not remember that.

Something that I really thought about this time too that I normally don't care about or pay attention to was Giovanni Ribisi's character. He really doesn't do anything terribly wrong. I mean he's a little neglectful or his wife's feelings, but nothing really terrible. He sends her a sweet love-fax (I want a love-fax) and he puts his arm around her when Anna Faris' character is being annoying, so honestly I feel like it's the post marriage thing- marriage changes everything (when will people believe me) and that the person you married is totally different than who you knew before. I also think that is a totally relatable feeling of marrying someone and then being like oh-shit I've made a mistake who is this person. Especially if you marry someone while you're still in school!

On the other side of it I always kinda ignore Bill Murray's fling with the lounge singer, where was Scarlet at this point? Why didn't he just go find her, or was he drunk? He must have been drunk right because when he wakes up the next morning he seems to really rethink his poor choices.

One of my favorite things about this movie is probably how little dialogue is actually in it. I love the montages and the scenery- the temple, the flower arranging class, the pool, the city lights, the's just cool to see without a lot of distractions.

I still love this movie and will probably always love it. It's so good and always makes me smile. And no I don't care what Bill Murray whispers in her ear at the end. It would not make the world a better place knowing what they are.

Spring 2004: Sideways

Movie Facts:
Directed by Alexander Payne
Google Genre: Drama film/Comedy-Drama
Movie Tagline: In search of wine. In search of women. In search for themselves.
Actors: Paul Giamatti duuuude get over it. But he's great in this role.
Thomas Haden Church hey it's the guy from Wings!
Virginia Madsen is a goddess and I love her.

Before Rewatch:
I remember I saw this with my first college boyfriend. This was way before I started really getting into wine, like years before and I remember still loving it. I remember Virginia Madsen's scene that they showed that year at the Academy Awards or Golden Globes when she's talking about wine being alive. I just remember loving her character so much and while it's totally not fully developed enough I just love her.

After Rewatch:
Still love this movie. I've probably watched this movie a handful of times after really starting to get into wine and whenever I go to wine tastings or a winery or anything I always think about certain scenes. I think it's fun to think about two men doing this, especially since my girlfriends and I have been talking about doing this for a few years. I think it's funny that they would go to wine country for a bachelor weekend...especially when the soon to be married bachelor isn't really into wine.

Not even 10 minutes into the movie I started laughing not at what was on the screen but just thinking about a scene- the man in my life asked me what was funny and I told him I was just thinking about a scene.  A little bit later there's a scene where the men are at a winery tasting wine and Thomas Haden Church's character is trying to describe the wine and Paul Giamatti turns to him and says "Are you chewing gum?" and it does a quick cut to the next scene and I just start cracking up! It's one of my favorite scenes and always makes me laugh. Just thinking about it now still makes me chuckle.

People who know me know I don't like comedies, it has to be a really specific type of comedy for me to like it. So movies like this that are so funny but still so dark and depressing are really my favorite types of movies. I love the swing of emotions. The ending is rough for some people, I know people don't like unfinished things but I'm fine with it. I like to think that Virginia Madsen's character opens the door and maybe they don't get together immediately but become friends and eventually figure it out. I'd be upset if she immediately let him in. I love this movie and will keep watching it.

BONUS MOVIE: Spring 2006: V for Vendetta

Movie Facts:
Directed by James McTeigue
Google Genre: Drama film/Thriller
Movie Tagline: People should not be afraid of their governments. Governments should be afraid of their people.
Actors: Natalie Portman love her! It always takes me a little bit to get used to her accent but once I do I love her.
Hugo Weaving isn't there like some weird thing about his role in this, like he wasn't the original V but does the voice? Or he did the acting but someone else did the voice? I can't remember
Stephen Rea love him! The eternal police detective, but he plays it so well.

Before Rewatch:
Okay I did not watch this when it came out. I watched it at some other point afterwards. Probably on November 5th, because I've been watching it on November 5th for years and years, which is why it's a bonus movie because it fits the timeframe and the man and I watched it on the 5th. We watched it right before the election and of course a few days later it's viewing takes on a bit more of a surreal quality, but it's always a good movie to watch annually.

After Rewatch:
I love Natalie Portman but he character's motives are just not very clear in the beginning. Does she want to have dinner with Stephen Fry or not? If she does why the hell is she so late? Also the next day at work why does she look so suspicious when delivering the packages? She already looks like she know's she's going to try to deceive someone. I don't know--- always bothers me, still bothers me.

I always want to know more about Larkin and what the experiments were there. It reminds me of something out of a Margaret Atwood book. I want to know more about the doctor and her involvement and all of it. Like an Atwood book it's scary to think about some of these things happening and Stephen Rea's monologue about guessing how it'll happen - someone will do something stupid. It always starts with someone doing something stupid...

My favorite scene is always the first one with V blowing up Old Bailey and Evey looks at V like he's crazy conducting a fake symphony. It always makes me laugh.

It's a good movie, I enjoy watching it once a year and will continue to do so.

Final Thoughts:
I really love all these movies except Clerks 2, it'll probably have to wait another 4 years or so to be watched again. Lost in Translation out of the bunch is my favorite probably followed by V and then Sideways.

Previous Movie Posts:
College movie project overview
Fall 2006 - Stranger than Fiction