So, here we are, at the end of what has been a crazy ride. 198 movies I’ve never seen before for 2011. Incredibly awful score, considering my set goal of 365 – but then, who’s keeping score, eh?
I told a friend about this once.
Me (circa December 2010): “Hey, I’m going to try to watch a new movie everyday next year.”
I shrugged. At the time, there wasn’t really a reason. I’m not particularly sure what I had in mind when I embarked on this Project 365 – only the acceptance of the fact that idleness and I get along like Krispy Kremes go together with diets. I’m the type of person who likes to be kept busy, and this did precisely that. It gave me something to do besides aimlessly surfing the Web, reading about a hundred article on Google Reader before realizing that, lo and behold, it’s two in the morning. It wasn’t much of a stretch since I watch movies all the time. I guess it was only halfway through – say, about fifty movies in – where the value of what I was doing really started to sink in. It hit me that I wasn’t doing anything particularly groundbreaking – just that I was doing it on steroids. And it led me to think about why we watch movies, and what that says about us. I mean, when you think about, it’s only us humans who have this desire for entertainment, this need to be amused and moved. Sure, my dog plays happily with a chew toy, but he doesn’t care much for watching some other dog participate in canine recreational activities. And yet there I was, watching people onscreen everyday (almost!) for a year.
Moviegoers at Baghdad's first 4-D cinema
Posted in Movies
- Tagged before sunrise, before sunset, drake doremus, el laberinto del fauno, guillermo del toro, like crazy, moviegoer, pan's labyrinth, project 365, richard linklater, why do we watch movies
In Malcolm Gladwell’s book The Tipping Point, he talked about innovators and how this group of people basically create and perpetuate our concept of cool. While I hardly think of myself as one of these adventurous folks, I do identify with the early innovators, the more cautious people who keep an eye on trends and are a little more discerning about what to try. I’ve always been one of the first people to get on the train, so to speak. But it’s not easy to know which trends will catch on and which will die out faster than you can quote Andy Warhol.
Case in point: remember Google Wave? I was a fan. It was really more of a Google Ripple, in the end. So you can understand my hesitation when Google+ rolled out.
Here are some other things that I’ve resisted, even fought, and then, embraced:
- Don’t get me wrong, I have nothing against quiet little movies or indie darlings. I just wasn’t that excited to spend time with a movie where (basically) nothing happens – no major plot twist, no major drama, no major anything. (See that poster?) The first fifteen minutes made me quit on this movie, twice.
Posted in Movies, Pop Culture, Television
- Tagged animal print, cityville, cityville addict, dc cupcakes, google wave, harem pants, sofia coppola, somewhere, trends
This is my favorite painting.
If this seems familiar, it’s because you’ve seen it before. You have, trust me. Maybe not in person (you can see it with your own eyes at the Museum of Modern Art in Manhattan), and maybe not in its original form. This, ladies and gentlemen, is Vincent Van Gogh’s magnum opus. Some people prefer Starry Night Over The Rhone, but for sheer emotion and beauty, I go to The Starry Night. I could get lost in the swirls of blue and white. Now, I’m no art major, so I won’t go into the technical details of the painting. But I will go into into its various reincarnations in pop culture.
Posted in Art, Movies, Pop Culture
- Tagged barad-dur, batman, cake art, cupcakes, dr. who, gotham city, harry potter, hogwarts, inspiration, midnight over paris, mordor, nail art, new york fashion week, rodarte, starry night, TARDIS, the lord of the rings, van gogh in pop culture, vincent van gogh, woody allen
Spiderman is ruling Hollywood, and if it isn’t him – well, it sure feels that way. In 2002, Sam Raimi and Tobey Maguire brought your friendly neighborhood webslinging wall crawler to the cinemas, and it has since spawned two sequels, released in 2004 and 2007. It’s a fun franchise, to be sure – but do we really need to “reboot” it in less that five years? Yes, The Amazing Spider-Man, set for a 2012 release (and with a 2014 sequel already in the works), will combine the talents of Andrew Garfield, Emma Stone and Rhys Ifans, but…isn’t there someone else we could make a movie about?
What is the most creative Hollywood blockbuster you’ve seen in the past few years? One with a plot that feels fresh, like it hasn’t been rehashed or remade to shreds. Think about it. Most people would say Christopher Nolan’s Inception, or maybe Terrence Malick’s The Tree of Life. Now think about the movie line-up for 2011. Here’s a small selection of the released and upcoming movies for the year:
The Hangover Part II; Cars 2; Paranormal Activity 3; Transformers: Dark of the Moon; Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol; Spy Kids: All The Time In The World In 4D; Fast Five; Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part II
Try something else. Think about the number of superhero movies out there (or what I like to call the rise of the Marvel/DC comic book movie empire).
Thor; Captain America: The First Avenger; Green Lantern; X-Men: First Class
Why is Hollywood doing this? Has it become creatively bankrupt? Have we run out of good ideas? Is this a black hole of creativity?
Posted in Movies, Pop Culture
- Tagged adaptations, andrew garfield, art, christopher nolan, creative bankruptcy, creativity, creativity in film, film franchise, hollywood, movies, nothing is original, originality, reboots, remakes, sequels, spiderman, superhero movie, tobey maguire