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BP’s Top 100 Movie Challenge #46: E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial, by Sarah Brinks

11 Jul

I decided to undertake a movie challenge in 2017. This seemed like a good way to see some classic movies that I have unfortunately never seen. The Battleship Pretension Top 100 list has a good number of films I hadn’t seen before so it is a good source for my challenge.

E.T. The Extra Terrestrial is another movie on the Battleship Pretension top 100 list that I grew up watching, but I am so glad I got to rewatch this film because I think it has been close to twenty years since I last watched it. It isn’t surprising, but I still absolutely love it but I also got a lot more out of it during this viewing.

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BP’s Top 100 Movie Challenge #47: Bicycle Thieves, by Sarah Brinks

8 Jul

I decided to undertake a movie challenge in 2017. This seemed like a good way to see some classic movies that I have unfortunately never seen. The Battleship Pretension Top 100 list provided such a challenge.

Bicycle Thieves is a film on this list that I had always wanted to see but never got around to, which is part of why I am enjoying the Battleship Pretension Top 100 challenge so much. The story of Bicycle Thieves is simple but the film isn’t simple at all. I love that at its heart it is a film about the limits of a man’s morality and his relationship with his son.

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BP’s Top 100 Movie Challenge #48: Ran, by Sarah Brinks

5 Jul

I decided to undertake a movie challenge in 2017. This seemed like a good way to see some classic movies that I have unfortunately never seen. The Battleship Pretension Top 100 list provided such a challenge.

Ran is a retelling of William Shakespeare’s play King Lear set in medieval Japan. It was interesting to see this version of the story because the problems that I have with Ran are the same problems I have with ‘King Lear’. I am a huge Shakespeare fan but I have never loved ‘King Lear’. It was always over-long, dull in the middle, and unnecessarily tragic and the same can be said for Ran.

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BP’s Top 100 Movie Challenge #49: Oldboy, by Sarah Brinks

4 Jul

I decided to undertake a movie challenge in 2017. This seemed like a good way to see some classic movies that I have unfortunately never seen. The Battleship Pretension Top 100 list has a good number of films I hadn’t seen before so it is a good source for my challenge.

I have admitted previously that Asian cinema is a weak point in my film-watching but I will also admit I had purposely never seen Oldboy. I have seen a few of the director Park Chan-Wook’s films and I have enjoyed them, but found them difficult to watch. Through cultural osmosis I had learned a few things about Oldboy and I knew there were things there I could never unsee. You can’t unsee a man eating a live octopus, no matter how much you might want to. I also have a very low tolerance for body horror. I just have a very weak stomach and things like Dae-Su Oh cutting out his own tongue were very difficult to watch. In fact, to be honest, I didn’t watch it but knowing that it was happening even with my eyes closed was enough for me to need to take some real deep breaths and think about happy things… even writing about it now is tough for me.

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BP’s Top 100 Movie Challenge #51: Persona, by Sarah Brinks

27 Jun

I decided to undertake a movie challenge in 2017. This seemed like a good way to see some classic movies that I have unfortunately never seen. The Battleship Pretension Top 100 list has a good number of films I hadn’t seen before so it is a good source for my challenge.

I wasn’t sure what I was in for when I started watching Persona. The opening is a strange montage of early film clips and some fairly horrific images of a crucifixion and a sheep being slaughtered. It ends with a child waking up in a morgue looking at the image of a woman’s face. I have seen a handful of Ingmar Bergman’s films in the past and enjoyed them, so I was holding out hope. Then we got into the real story of the film and I was onboard.

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BP’s Top 100 Movie Challenge #52: Blue Velvet, by Sarah Brinks

20 Jun

I decided to undertake a movie challenge in 2017. This seemed like a good way to see some classic movies that I have unfortunately never seen. The Battleship Pretension Top 100 list has a good number of films I hadn’t seen before so it is a good source for my challenge.

I don’t have a lot to say about Blue Velvet. David Lynch’s brand of weird is not a weird that I respond positively too. There is no doubt that he is a talented film maker who if good at his craft, but the stories he tells and the way he tells them, in a lot of ways, repel me.

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BP’s Top 100 Movie Challenge #53: Annie Hall, by Sarah Brinks

17 Jun

I decided to undertake a movie challenge in 2017. This seemed like a good way to see some classic movies that I have unfortunately never seen. The Battleship Pretension Top 100 list provided such a challenge.

I think I might have come to the sad realization watching Annie Hall this time that I like Woody Allen films less and less over the years. I first saw Annie Hall in a college film class and I really liked it. It was so funny and unique and clever but this time around I was more irritated than anything. But I want to start with the things that I still like about the film. I am a life-long Diane Keaton fan and she gives a delightful performance as the titular character. I also love all the flashbacks, split screens and the moments when Allen breaks the fourth wall. Those scenes still work for me, like the clever use of subtitles when Annie and Alvy are first getting to know each other. I also like that film is not chronological, we see Annie and Alvy as a real couple before we see their meet-cute.

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BP’s Top 100 Movie Challenge #54: Nashville, by Sarah Brinks

13 Jun

I decided to undertake a movie challenge in 2017. This seemed like a good way to see some classic movies that I have unfortunately never seen. The Battleship Pretension Top 100 list provided such a challenge.

This was the first time I ever watched Robert Altman’s Nashville. I know that this is a movie I would get more out of with multiple viewings but I have to go off of my initial viewing only. As with any Altman film the cast is enormous and full of great performances.

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BP’s Top 100 Movie Challenge #55: The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring, by Sarah Brinks

10 Jun

I decided to undertake a movie challenge in 2017. This seemed like a good way to see some classic movies that I have unfortunately never seen. The Battleship Pretension Top 100 list has a good number of films I hadn’t seen before so it is a good source for my challenge.

The Fellowship of the Ring is another film from which I will have a hard time separating my nostalgia. I remember when the Lord of the Rings trilogy was announced – I was in college, and my friends and I were all so excited about it. We downloaded trailers and marketing stills and interviews like they were going out of style. Then when The Fellowship of the Ring was finally released over Christmas break, I went to a midnight screening with my brother and friends and we all sat in awe of the spectacle that unfolded in front of us. Peter Jackson had somehow found Middle Earth and elves and dwarves and made them real, or at least it felt that way.

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BP’s Top 100 Challenge #56: Back to the Future, by Sarah Brinks

6 Jun

I decided to undertake a movie challenge in 2017. This seemed like a good way to see some classic movies that I have unfortunately never seen. The Battleship Pretension Top 100 list has a good number of films I hadn’t seen before so it is a good source for my challenge.

For full transparency, I grew up watching Back to the Future and its sequels, so I don’t think I can separate my nostalgic connection to this film. That being said, it has probably been five years since I watched the original. I have to say I still love it. Back to the Future is so much fun to watch. It has the same problems with the time travel logic that all time travel films have, but it doesn’t really bother me.

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