Friday, March 31, 2006

Critical credibility has a fag break

OK, here's a meme. The thing is, you must only post half of it. All will become clear. Tag-ees at the bottom.

What, in your opinion, are the 10 best movies of all time? Do a list. Great.

You know the drill. Good, yes, gotta have a Scorsese. And a silent, or at least a black and white. And something foreign. Italian neo-realists? Hmm, bit passé. Wim Wenders? Fab. That one with Columbo in. And, gosh, which of the Three Colours should I pick? I'll say White. Bit perverse, most people ignore that one.

And Citizen Kane. It's compulsory, you know. Haven't seen it? It's the sled, stupid. Stick it in.

Excellent. Now, chuck that list away. And now list your 10 favourite films, which (and this is exceedingly important) MUST NOT INCLUDE ANY TITLE ON YOUR '10 BEST' LIST. Go on. Even if - especially if - you know they're really not very good by conventional critical standards.

1. The Magnificent Seven (John Sturges, 1960) Before the days of VCRs, my dad taped the soundtrack off the telly on his big old open-reel machine, and we'd sit and listen and act it out. I was usually Robert Vaughn, who doesn't do much, but does it exceedingly coolly. Oh, and it's considerably less looooong than Seven Samurai.
2. Big (Penny Marshall, 1988) The best thing Tom Hanks has ever done, and ever will do.
3. Charade (Stanley Donen, 1963) Everyone thinks this is a Hitchcock film, because it's got Cary Grant in, looking urbane under pressure. Truth is, it's more fun than most of the fat freak's stuff.
4. Hellzapoppin (H.C. Potter, 1941) I laughed so much at this film when I was about eight that I peed on my grandma's living-room carpet. I accidentally-on-purpose spilled some orange squash on it to disguise the fact.
5. Grosse Point Blank (George Armitage, 1997) Assassins have therapists? And unions? Wa-hey!!! Where do I sign?
6. Angel Heart (Alan Parker, 1987) Mickey Rourke before he went mental, De Niro as Satan, and Lisa Bonet does naked. What more on God's Earth could you desire? Oh, and voodoo. And chickens.
7. Pretty in Pink (Howard Deutch, 1986) I had my high school prom the same year, only in Canada we called it a 'formal'. Guess who I identified with (and it wasn't James Spader).
8. Wallace & Gromit in The Curse of the Were-Rabbit (Steve Box & Nick Park, 2005) I agree with the critical consensus that Crash was an undeserving recipient of the Best Picture Oscar. However, I think this was the gay love story that should have got it.
9. Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon/Wo hu cang long (Ang Lee, 2000) What you're supposed to say: "It's Chinese cinema made digestible for Western audiences." What I say: a) Ziyi Zhang is very naughty and deserves to have her bottom smacked, and; b) "I would rather be a ghost drifting by your side as a condemned soul than enter heaven without you. Because of your love, I will never be a lonely spirit." ...sob...
10. Trading Places (John Landis, 1984) If only for the 'BLT' scene, when Eddie Murphy looks at the camera. You know the one.

Patroclus, Slaminsky, Curve. You be tagged. Scoop up this wad of cinematic Play-Do and mould it into something fine.


Wyndham said...

That's a great list. With the massive exception of Big. Even with my loose morals even I've always been disturbed by the idea of an adult woman falling in love with a young boy. And anyway, I've always been more of a Splash man.

Tim Footman said...

She falls in love with the inner boy, but gets the hots for the outer man. Is that OK?

My memories of Splash are slightly obfuscated by the fact that I first saw it in Paris, and I spent most of the film snogging a Cambodian.

Wyndham said...

The Killing Fields came out the same year as Splash - are you quite certain you went to see the right film?

Tim Footman said...

Sorry, I got confused by the bit where John Candy joins the Khmer Rouge.

MB said...


No Star Wars Episode 1: The Phantom Menace?

Hmmm, must give my real list some thought but Seven, Cube and the Leslie Neilsen Airplane and Naked Gun films would be on there.

patroclus said...

Angel Heart - now that *is* a quality film, apart from the crap ending, obviously.

Thanks for the tag, Tim. Why do I always get tagged to write about things I know nothing whatsoever about? I could have bored the pants off everyone forever with that music one, but no. But I will give it a go!

Tim Footman said...

Airplane was certainly bubbling under, mb.

But patroclus, what do you need to know? You must have seen 10 films that you liked in your life? And the other 10 (the ones that don't make it to the list), well, you only need to know about them.

The Curve said...

Tag received Tim, I shall bypass all critical faculties later on today hopefully.

Annie said...

You've got great taste Tim. Tell me, did you mean you identified with Molly Ringwald in Pretty in Pink?

Tim Footman said...

duck off