Monday, December 7, 2009

Movie Survey!

This is taken from Sergio Leone and the Infield Fly Rule.

1) Second-favorite Coen Brothers movie.
It's hard to say for sure because there are a few (Fargo, Barton Fink, Miller's Crossing, and Blood Simple) that I haven't seen in ages and don't really remember, but of those that I do have sufficient memory of, my second favorite would be Big Lebowski, or possibly A Serious Man, but I'd have to see it again.

2) Movie seen only on home format that you would pay to see on the biggest movie screen possible?

3) Japan or France?
Favorite Japanese films: Visitor Q, Imprint, Ichi the Killer, Pastoral: To Die in the Country, most of Strange Circus, Tetsuo: Iron Man, Haze, Splatter: Naked Blood, Spirited Away
Favorite French films: Haute Tension, Inside, The Grapes of Death, The Night of the Hunted, The Mascot (Russian filmmaker, though, if it matters), The Umbrellas of Cherbourg, City of Lost Children
Close call, but Japan, I guess.

4) Favorite moment/line from a western.
Django pulls a primitive machine gun out of a coffin and starts blowing everyone away, in Django.

5) Of all the arts the movies draw upon to become what they are, which is the most important, or the one you value most?
The art of excess.

6) Most misunderstood movie of the 2000s.
The Room.

7) Name a filmmaker/actor/actress/film you once unashamedly loved who has fallen furthest in your esteem.
I get disappointed in individual films from people I like, but I can't think of anyone I've completely lost faith in.

8) Herbert Lom or Patrick Magee?
Magee because he's in A Clockwork Orange, and I would probably recognize him if I saw him in something else. I've only seen Lom in Mysterious Island, and he didn't leave an impression on me.

9) Which is your least favorite David Lynch film?
Inland Empire, I guess. I like it ok, though. The worst thing, by far, that he's ever been involved in is On the Air.

10) Gordon Willis or Conrad Hall?
The Godfather movies fit into the handful of films where I've actually been taken aback by stunning cinematography, so Willis.

11) Second favorite Don Siegel movie.
The Lineup.

12) Last movie you saw on DVD/Blu-ray? In theaters?
The last movie I watched at home was Star Wars, but it was on VHS. Before that, it was Hellraiser III: Hell on Earth on 11/9. I almost never watch movies at home anymore. In theaters, I rewatched Zombieland at the Red Vic last night, and the last non-rewatch was A Serious Man at the Balboa.

13) Which DVD in your private collection screams hardest to be replaced by a Blu-ray?
Pink Flamingos.

14) Eddie Deezen or Christopher Mintz-Plasse?
Eddie Deezen is great, but he's only great in short bursts. If he's in a movie too much, he can be kind of grating (see: Surf II: The End of the Trilogy). Mintz-Plasse has a much more lasting charm.

15) Actor/actress who you feel automatically elevates whatever project they are in, or whom you would watch in virtually anything.
I have a ton of answers for this, but I'll go with Amy Adams because she's a current obsession. No matter how terrible a movie looked, I would still want to see it if she's in it.

16) Fight Club -- yes or no?
Yeah. I always think it's not gonna hold up, but then it always does. It's been a few years, though.

17) Teresa Wright or Olivia De Havilland?
I don't know either well enough to say.

18) Favorite moment/line from a film noir.
I really love the scene in Pickup on South Street where a snitch is eating Chinese food with chopsticks, and he casually uses them to pick up money from the table and put it in his pocket, then continues eating with them without missing a beat. It's a simple thing, but it kind of blew my mind.

19) Best (or worst) death scene involving an obvious dummy substituting for a human or any other unsuccessful special effect(s).
The baby being thrown out a window in Andy Warhol's Bad. It actually doesn't look that bad, and it's only obvious it's a dummy because it's not like they had the option to use a stunt-baby or something.

20) What's the least you've spent on a film and still regretted it?
When you love as many movies as I do, it's nice to occasionally see something I hate, no matter how unpleasant it may be while I'm actually sitting through it. And that way, when people are like "Whatever, Austin, you like everything." I can be like, "Are you kidding me? How can you say that in a world where something as pathetic as Werckmeister Harmonies exists?"

21) Van Johnson or Van Heflin?
I liked Van Heflin in Airport. That's the only thing I know either of them from.

22) Favorite Alan Rudolph film.
All I've seen is Roadie, starring Meat Loaf. It was alright.

23) Name a documentary that you believe more people should see.
Herzog's Land of Silence and Darkness. Dear Zachary. My Flesh and Blood.
All three of those are total heartbreakers. I guess there's a trend in documentaries I love.

24) In deference to this quiz’s professor, name a favorite film which revolves around someone becoming stranded.
Home Alone.

25) Is there a moment when your knowledge of film, or lack thereof, caused you an unusual degree of embarrassment and/or humiliation? If so, please share.
Taking this survey, and not being able to answer any of the actor comparisons.

26) Ann Sheridan or Geraldine Fitzgerald?
I don't know!

27) Do you or any of your family members physically resemble movie actors or other notable figures in the film world? If so, who?
My dad kind of looks/looked like Lee Marvin. That's him on the left, Marvin on the right, OR IS IT?

28) Is there a movie you have purposely avoided seeing? If so, why?
Yes, like a hundred thousand of them. I may not regret anything I've watched, but that doesn't mean I purposely watch anything I think I'm gonna hate. I don't care for period pieces or a lot of high-brow dramas, so I don't fucking watch them. There are also a few directors whose work I've seen a bit of, and I didn't like it, so I stop watching movies by that director. You want to know my secret for why I like such a huge percentage of the movies I watch? I only watch movies I think I'm going to like. That's it! Anyone can do it. I get kind of offended when people hate something like Norbit or Transformers 2, because how is it possible to go into a movie like that not knowing what you're gonna get? If your personal tastes do not lean toward big, dumb, incoherent action movies, but you see something like Transformers anyway, then that is your own fucking fault that you had a bad time watching it. I always see these ridiculous movies on people's Worst-of lists, or that they hated something on Netflix, and it's like, I haven't even seen that fucking movie, and I like those kinds of movies. Why have you seen it? I only know you through the internet, and I could've fucking told you that you wouldn't fucking like that movie, and your time would be better spent watching something else. I'm guilty of this myself to an extent, but the only reason I'll watch something that looks terrible to me is if enough trustworthy people completely love it (or if Amy Adams is in it). Or if it's a classic in some way. I knew I wouldn't like Lawrence of Arabia (and I didn't), but it's one of those classics that seemed important to see. Norbit isn't.

29) Movie with the most palpable or otherwise effective wintry atmosphere or ambience.
The first thing I thought of, for some reason, is The Ice Harvest. But obviously, The Thing is a better answer, even if it's everybody's answer. The Ice Harvest is underrated, though.

30) Gerrit Graham or Jeffrey Jones?
I like Gerrit Graham, but Jeffrey Jones has a much more impressive filmography overall. And by more impressive, I mean that it includes Howard the Duck.

31) The best cinematic antidote to a cultural stereotype (sexual, political, regional, whatever).
Doris Wishman and Kathryn Bigelow.

32) Second favorite John Wayne movie.
I've only seen one, 3 Godfathers, and I didn't like it.

33) Favorite movie car chase.
Clint Eastwood being chased through the streets of San Francisco by a small, remote control car with a bomb attached to it in The Dead Pool. There never has, and never, ever will be a car chase scene that even comes close to being as amazing as this was. Bullitt can suck it (I haven't seen it, but I know it's not as good).

34) In the spirit of His Girl Friday, propose a gender-switched remake of a classic or not-so-classic film.
Showboys could be pretty good, preferably with Verhoeven still directing. But I saw someone else answered Fight Club, and that's brilliant.

35) Barbara Rhoades or Barbara Feldon?
Don't know them.

36) Favorite Andre De Toth movie.
Never seen one.

37) If you could take one filmmaker's entire body of work and erase it from all time and memory, as if it had never happened, whose oeuvre would it be?
Mel Brooks. There are a lot of directors I hate, but he's the only one where I actually feel a little sad when someone I like says that they like him.

38) Name a film you actively hated when you first encountered it, only to see it again later in life and fall in love with it.
The first time I saw My Own Private Idaho, I thought it was the worst movie I had ever seen. I watched it again a few years later and thought it was pretty good. Usually, though, if I try again with things I don't like, my opinion stays the same (Top Gun, Buckaroo Bonzai, El Topo, Blade Runner).

39) Max Ophuls or Marcel Ophuls?
I don't know Marcel, and didn't like the one Max I've seen.

40) In which club would you most want an active membership, the Delta Tau Chi fraternity, the Cutters or the Warriors? And which member would you most resemble, either physically or in personality?
The Dagger Debs. Can't say I resemble any of them, but if I had a choice of who to be, I'd be Maggie.

41) Your favorite movie cliché.
Girl getting revenge after being raped. 2nd favorite: Blatant setup for a sequel.

42) Vincente Minnelli or Stanley Donen?
Singin' in the Rain is better than every great Minnelli movie put together. But he also made Two for the Road, which I think I actually hate more than I love Singin' in the Rain (which he only co-directed, anyway), so by default, I have to say Minnelli.

43) Favorite Christmas-themed horror movie or sequence.

44) Favorite moment of self- or selfless sacrifice in a movie.
Arnold Schwarzenegger in Terminator 2.

45) If you were the cinematic Spanish Inquisition, which movie cult (or cult movie) would you decimate?
Obviously, the subculture of people who think it's ok to talk during midnight movies (or any other movies in the theater).

46) Caroline Munro or Veronica Carlson?
Don't know Carlson, but I like Munro a lot.

47) Favorite eye-patch wearing director.

48) Favorite ambiguous movie ending.
City of the Living Dead.

49) In giving thanks for the movies this year, what are you most thankful for?
My Bloody Valentine and The Final Destination setting off a trend, and now seemingly every single horror movie in production is going to be in 3D! While I was watching The Final Destination, I was actually thinking that if all I watched for the rest of my life were 3D horror movies, I would be wholly content.

50) George Kennedy or Alan North?
George fucking Kennedy. He's awesome.

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