Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Forum #1 - Movies I Have Loved

Hello. My name is Baroness, and I'm a movie whore.

Hello, Baroness.

The oh-so-lovely Countess AG over at Is My Cape Fluttering? suggested that I talk about my favorite movies - the ones I keep watching over and over.

While on the surface this should be a fairly straightforward request, it is indeed challenging to me. Because, for the most part - I love almost all movies that I see, and can find some redeeming quality in each and every one. Thus sunketh any possible foray into being a movie critic.

It might be a line, a look, an exquisite performance in a ho-hum storyline. It might be the quality of the light or the cinematography.

Usually, though, it's the humour. And may I explain here (note here that I did not say "apologize") that my gut laughs, by and large, come from the lowbrow.

Without further ado, a smattering of my lovelies and some justifications:

1. Zoolander. Hands down. Having spent some time in the modeling world a hundred lifetimes ago, I am afraid to say that Ben Stiller's portrayal of Derek Z. is not so far off the mark. Ah, where do I begin? Derek's roommates? Jacobim? The David Duchovney cameo?

Favorite lines:
"That Hansel - he's so hot right now"
"What is this? A Center for Ants?"
" Mer-man, Pop. Mer-MAN!"
"Is everyone here taking crazy pills?"

2. Orange County. Colin Hanks is that delicious apple who has not fallen far from the tree. And Jack Black? Whoa. Love his commitment to his character and his predilection for walking around in his tighty whiteys with no modesty whatsoever. John Lithgow. Catherine O'Hara.

Favorite line:
"Got any beer, Coyote Ugly?"

3. Monty Python and the Holy Grail. Growing up in Canada, we were brought up with many BBC imports on television, and I enjoyed the absurdity of it all from a wa-a-a-ay back. I must have seen this 30 times as a teen, and our recent attendance of Spamalot during the 20-year-anniversary-renew-our-vows-at-a-Las-Vega-drive-through-wedding-chapel-weekend made me fall in love with it all over again. Pure nostalgia.

4. Malibu's Most Wanted. While I did not love Jamie Kennedy on his tv show, I found this to be an amazing send-up on all of those foolish little rich white boys who seem to feel the need to hike down their pants and get their (idea of) "Black Experience" on. Plus, I saw Ryan O'Neal and Bo Derek in a light I hadn't before.

5. Amelie. Charming. Sweet. French. And above all, quirky. What's not to love? Oh, and the gnome schtick? Killer.

6. Elizabethtown. Have I ever told you how for some cougar-ish reason, I find Orlando Bloom absolutely beautiful? My kids tell me that I should get one of those hairless cats, call it Orlando, and be done with it. This movie is chock-full of appeal for me - good music, Susan Sarandon as a nutjob, a all-night phone call, dealing with relatives, death. There is just something about the end road trip that makes me incredibly wistful.

7. Pulp Fiction. Quentin Tarantino at his absolute best. And, of course, the coolest man in the world, Samuel L. Jackson. Gory, yes, but somehow within the context of it all, not as gratuitous as you might think. I love that it presented a world (I'm hoping accurate) that most of us would never in a million years find ourselves a part of.

8. So I Married An Axe Murderer. Mike Myers, pre all the Austin Powers explosion craziness. Cool, sweet, extremely funny. And apparently shot just down the block from my blend Write Procrastinator's house in San Francisco. Small world, non?

9. Raising Arizona. Coen Brothers. Holly Hunter. Need I say more?

10. Withnail and I. Bizarre, drug-and-booze addled. An 70's-ish road movie in the English countryside. With Richard E. Grant, whom I love (and have seen in real life, from afar. Sigh. Another hairless Englishman).

11. Babe. The original. Clever, sweet, metaphorical. A kid's movie I was only too happy to sit and watch over and over.

12. Under the Tuscan Sun. The golden tones of this whole movie are stunning to me. It's sweet and charming, and anytime I'm feeling a little blue, I pop it in and grab my chenille blankie. And Oh. I love Sandra Oh.

13. Rivers and Tides. A documentary which is stunningly quiet and beautiful about an artist with such vision. Truly inspirational.

14. Monsoon Wedding. One of the loveliest love scenes I have ever seen. It just about broke my heart with its simple beauty.

15. Bull Durham. A nod to the Baron, and to all things baseball. Kevin Costner at his hunky best, and a very gawky Tim Robbins. Loved the mid-game discussion at the pitcher's mound.

So, there's but a few.

Eclectic, but that's just me... Thanks again to AG for the great suggestion.

Tomorrow: Reading Material.


Leah Erridge said...

May I just add here
(Of course I'm always reading, but for some reason, I'm not one for the comments anymore.)
Orlando Bloom = Ugly.
I don't find the appeal.
Nor do I see it with Johnny Deep.
But thats just me...

Go Bull Durham!

Writeprocrastinator said...

"Small world, non?"

Mais, oui.

Amelie ces't manifique! That's quite an eclectic list you have with some excellent choices.

neutron said...

Zoolander??! But but ... how? Okay maybe you modeled and stuff but Zoolander??? sigh ...

Baroness von Bloggenschtern said...

Countess Leah: Delurking again!
Welcome back, oh faithful one. Like I said, I can't explain it. It just is.

Count WP: Meh oui, je l'aime Amelie.
Beaucoup. Tres tres beaucoup.

Count of Ping Pong: ^_^ Greetings.
Don't go all judge-y on me, love - we just met. To me, Zoolander is brilliant in its sheer stupidity, its oh-so-accurate portrayal of the vacuous and vapid. It just strikes a nerve. I'm sure you have some guilty pleasures, too...

asthmagirl said...

I love movie lists! They're such a window into the soul, so to speak. That may be a little extreme, but I think the list really speaks to the person within. I should have suspected yours would be so eclectic!

I agree on Monty Python and Babe! Love and Love! I didn't get Zoolander... or really the Axe Murder either.

Thanks for sharing your list, Baroness. I can't wait for the reading material!

iPost said...

Holy Baronessoli! That is a lot of movies. I am the opposite of a movie whore. I am a movie whore-not. I hardly ever see movies. Ever.

Baroness von Bloggenschtern said...

Countess AG: Well, my dear friend, the Countess of Yik Yak, whom I share many a laugh with, cannot for the life of her understand WHY I like Zoolander, or Austin Powers, for that matter. Chacon a son gout.

Countess iPost: And THAT's barely scratching the surface. Why no movies? No desire? No time?


Not Afraid To Use It said...

Ah. Axe Murderer. So funny. Except when I made my vegetarian friend watch it. She started dry heaving during the butcher shop scene.

Which made me laugh and love the movie even more.

Mental P Mama said...

I like many of those as well, but don't know Monsoon Wedding...am going to check that one out. Thanks!

MommyWizdom said...

Baroness, you had me at Zoolander!!! It is definitely one of my faves! :-)

Baroness von Bloggenschtern said...

Countess NATUI: Oh my. Didn't you win a Friend of PETA award recently?

Countess MPM: Bollywood movies are pretty prominent in our neck of the woods, so this one was a real step above, imho. Also, if you're up for it, see Water. It's about how the caste system treats widows. V. illuminating!

Countess MoWi: That MommyWizdom - she's so hot right now!!

Momma said...

3, 8, 9, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15 would be on my list, too. Wonderful movies! Bull Durham? On my annual movie watching list, right at the beginning of baseball season each year.


Peace - D

neutron said...

I guess I too have my guilty pleasures. I just made a special post for you.

Baroness von Bloggenschtern said...

Countess Momma: Bull Durham AND Field of Dreams. That one makes me (and my husband) cry every time.

Count of Ping Pong: Ha! Thanks for this. Certain of my out-laws are obsessive Trekkies, so this is very funny indeed!

David said...

Bull Durham, ah the place where Sport and literature intersect. The movie that defined an era and a reason for a passtime.
The best line in my opinion that ever ended up on the editing room floor:
"If you know where home plate is, then you know where first base is, and second, and everything else - 'cause they're always in the same place in relation to home. Don't you see? If you know where home plate is, then you know where everything else in the universe is."
Annie to Crash David in Bull Durham.
Sadly this never made it to screen. It was edited out. It may be the best line in a movie that never made it
Great post as always,

Baroness von B said...

Count David: This sounds like it should be thrown on the summer reading pile.

The one important thing that my hubster has taught me about baseball is that it is fraught with allegory and metaphor. That's what I love the most.

That, and the garlic fries...

ed said...


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