By Jordan and Eddie on 10/11/2017
Last week The Movie Guys committed themselves over one night and one day to plough through 8 films of note to showcase to each other.
Picking 4 films each that the other had never seen, this movie marathon provided a great opportunity to not only catch up, but share films we’ve loved with each other and see if the other felt similar about the features.
Held over a Thursday night and a jam-packed Friday, the order of the film screenings ran like this:
- True Romance (1993)
- Arrival (2016)
- Pulse (2001)
- Incendies (2010)
- Gleason (2016)
- Perfect Blue (1997)
- The Wicker Man (1973)
- The Neon Demon (2016)
The marathon required extra dosages of sugar and an acceptance of square eyes but there’s a simple joy in participating in such a volume of quality productions, that each in their own unique rights harbor a memorable piece of cinematic quality.
Below is a rundown of films shown, reviewed by the participant who had never seen them before.
Happy reading and happy watching.
Summary/Reviews by Eddie
True Romance (1993)
A great way to start of our marathon that features more than it’s fair share of heavy titles, True Romance is a whip-smart film unlike any other and further proof that it’s writer Quentin Tarantino owned the 90’s when it came to uber-cool crime films.
I’m not entirely sure why I had never seen True Romance before, but this updated take on Terrence Malick’s much loved Badlands formula is a real blast. Worth watching even if only for it’s acting turns and and its famous Sicilian scene between Christopher Walken and the late/great Dennis Hopper.
4 Hawaiian shirts out of 5
I’m ashamed to admit that years ago I had watched the very terrible American remake of Kiyoshi Kurosawa’s well-regarded tech-groudned Japanese horror.
While a little slow at stages and sometimes adversely affected by a few so-so acting turns, Kurosawa’s film was ahead of its time in many ways and dealt prophectically with the incoming internet craze.
Filled with much impending dread and some dastardly creepy scenes, fans of J-Horror should put this on their must-see list.
3 1/2 plane crashes out of 5
Perfect Blue (1997)
Some type of spiritual forefather to films like Mullholland Drive and Black Swan, this stunningly hand-drawn anime is twisted but wholly engaging.
Satoshi Kon’s debut film that focuses on one-time J-pop sensation Mima Kirigoe turning her hand to the world of acting whilst losing her grip on reality in the on-set of the internet age is utterly unique and one of the better adult orientated animes I’ve seen.
Filled with twists, turns and some highly memorable scenes, Kon’s film is deserving of it’s high regard and is one of the great debut films of the last 20 years.
4 pet fish out of 5
Wicker Man (1973)
Nothing I could’ve done could’ve possibly prepared me for just how downright bonkers and unique Robin Hardy’s much talked about British horror is.
Watching the Director’s Cut of the film that includes over 10 minutes of extra footage not seen in the originally released 1973 version of the film, all these years later Hardy’s film has lost none of it’s bizarro power.
About as unnerving as a film can get; we feel every bit as uneasy as Edward Woodward’s police detective as he traverse’s the small and mystery filled Scottish island of Summerisle.
Saying too much more about this missing person’s case with a difference would be a disservice to a narrative that needs to be seen to be believed.
My pick of the bunch for Jordan’s movie choices, The Wicker Man is a fascinating experience unlike any other.
Now to watch the much-talked about Nicolas Cage remake!
4 1/2 pub singalongs out of 5
Summary/Reviews by Jordan
The first of two films by Denis Villeneuve chosen by Eddie, Arrival is an alien invasion film that instead shows how alien concepts such as connectivity and open communication are to humans with a loosening grasp on empathy and affinity.
Showing that language can be both the first weapon of war and the key to avoiding conflict, this is a touching and engaging modern classic with superb performances throughout.
4.5 Australia references out of 5
Made early in Villeneuve’s career, Incendies is a powerful drama about the ripple effects of violence and an insight into the unrest in Palestine. Adapted from a stage play, its memorable mainly for intense character moments of development and realisation, directed with an emphasis on the determination of tortured lives caught up in a generational storm of turmoil.
4 ankle tattoos out of 5
Having previously showed me Dear Zachary during a catch up a few years ago, I knew that at least one tear-jerker would be coming my way, but while this documentary chronicling American Footballer Steve Gleeson’s fight with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is indeed tragic, his outlook on life and love for both his unborn child and inspiring wife are nothing less than inspiring.
Gleason is representative of the reason documentaries are an important piece in the fabric of film.
4 blocked punts out of 5
The Neon Demon (2016)
It surprises me that the films of Nicolas Winding Refn are as polarising as they are to both audiences and critics.
Drive is his most well renowned, but is a far less interesting piece than his more meaningful follow-up Only God Forgives, and Valhalla Rising is a triumph of visual narrative. Now, The Neon Demon can be included among the upper echelon of titles in an ever-promising filmography.
Speaking to the most dramatic reaches of physical obsession and delusional beautification, and showcasing vanity literally devouring itself with more sinister connotations, this is a morbidly striking and intricately choreographed experience.
4.5 empty swimming pools out of 5
Ever done a movie marathon? How about an all dayer watching the Harry Potter series back to back? Let us know in the comments below!