Holiday Movie Watch List and Review Day 2 : December 20th 2010   Leave a comment

DAY TWO : DECEMBER 20th 2010

Hey Everybody,

This time of the year for me means constant consuming of movie content all day every day. Now those of you who know me might wonder how this differs from my daily life in any way. Regardless I use the holiday lull to catch up on what I may have missed or re watching my favorite classics, mostly on Blu-Ray this year which is a great joy for me. It’s like re living the first viewing of all my favorites and classics alike. I hope everyone is enjoying the Holiday season and able to get into some good movies on your break.

  1. APOCALYPSE NOW Full Disclosure Edition Blu-Ray (1979-1991-2002) –  To start today is a particularity seminal holiday movie for me. I remember watching this with my dad over the holidays many a year, and really this is a film that only get better with age. The Blu-Ray presentation is stunning, with both versions of the film (1979 original and 2002 redux) and for the first time with the movie set you get the must see documentary HEARTS OF DARKNESS: A FILMMAKER’S APOCALYPSE filmed by Coppola’s wife during the 5 and a half years of production on the movie. A must own set for all film enthusiasts and a grand holiday film for all.
  2. SCROOGED (1988) director Richard Donner  – Bill Murray at his best (and really he’s never off, is he?), holiday movie bull sh!t at its best and Richard Donner not doing a purely action flick. All and all a great ride and reinvention of a classic story producing classic moment of its own. Always a fun film for all viewers, a great afternoon X-mas treat.
  3. FAWLTY TOWERS ( TV Series 1975-79) The Germans episode 6 – For a show that only had 12 episodes Fawlty Towers produces a immeasurable amount of laughter no matter how many times you watch any of the episodes. Even though you may know which bits are coming and know the outcome of the skit, you can’t help but bust out in joyous laughter every viewing. Instead of describing the episode “The Germans” I’ve posted it above . Enjoy the superb craziness of Cleese and company.
  4. UNCLE BUCK(1989) director John Hughes – The early evening feature stars the lovable and always funny John Candy. With Hughes directing him for the second time (the first being Plane, Trains and Automobiles in 1987) , Candy delivers laughs, drama and warmth to a character that could have been played totally wrong by another actor, he is Buck Russell. John Hughes only directed 8 feature films, writing 40 in total before his death in August of 2009. Every time I watch one of his directorial efforts I always come out feeling good even though I know every line to all of them reciting them aloud sometimes, like I’m sure most of you do as well, but you still want to watch them again and again. Too bad there’s know one like Candy or Hughes around today, both will be sourly missed leaving a legacy on celluloid that will last as long as movies have audiences around to view them. A kick ass movie.
  5. The Criterion Collection SANJURO Blu-Ray (1962) director Akira Kurosawa – And finally the late night feature a Kurosawa samurai classic, the companion piece to 1961’s Yojimbo which is the first time we see Toshiro Mifune play this swaggering ronin samurai with a good heart and fast blade. In this sequel Mifune again gets into great sword play with great lines and a grumpy “fu@k You” attitude to his skills and work. Toshiro Mifune to me is a true world class actor. His presents leaps off the scene, with a slight look or head tilt he conveys more than most actors today can do with lines. With Akira Kurosawa you are always in for a visual treat, a true visual story telling master at work every single film. The long lenses work used on Sanjuro  give it an amazing visual quality that along with the black and white brings out so much detail it is stunning. Criterion’s Blu-Ray presentation is astounding, I love the amount of effort that has gone into the high def releases there. A great way to end the day, Kurosawa, Mifune and one of my favorite endings of any sword play/ samurai flicks, “The Fountain of Blood” …Ouch! That shit might sting a bit in the morning…

TILL TOMORROW. STAY TUNED.

J.

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