Friday, April 4, 2008

100 movies - the penultimate list

   Penultimate. Isn't that a great word? It almost carries its own dramatic echo. Or maybe that's just inside my head. Sure, I could have just said, "the next to last list," but I think one should use a word like penultimate whenever the opportunity presents itself.
   So, here are the penultimate ten films from the list of 100 movies I really like. If you need to do things in order,
here's where I started.

Armageddon - A lot of people didn't like this movie. Or, at least, they claim not to have  liked it. For all that they seem to talk about it a lot. There's a Shakespearian quotation about that. (I'm sorry, did I just invoke Shakespeare in a sentence about a Bruce Willis movie? What was I thinking!)
   Yeah, this turned into a bit of a flag waver, but come on! It wasn't as bad as Independence Day, and I liked that movie, too. I'm not ashamed to stand up, tall and proud, and announce that I liked Armageddon.

Agent Cody Banks - Frankie Muniz plays Cody Banks, a High School student who has been recruited by the CIA (or some such secret agent organisation). His latest assignment requires him to get close to ::gasp:: a girl! Hilarity ensues.
   His agency contact is played by Angie Harmon...or at least by the many skin tight outfits she sports throughout the film. Two thumbs waayyy up.

Underworld - Vampires. Werewolves. Vampire-werewolf hybrids. Kate Beckinsale. Need I say more?

True Lies - This is one of my favourite of Ahnold's movies. It pokes fun at secret-agent-living-a-double-life cliche so common in spy-thriller films. Tom Arnold is hilarious as the sidekick. Also, Jamie Lee Curtis - Rowr! (Hmm, I seem to be falling into a predictable pattern here.)

The Matrix - Trinity rocks! So does her rubber wardrobe. Hawt! (Pattern continues). This is one of those films that has become so entwined in the pop-culture collective unconscious that virtually every piece of media released in the first five years of this decade made some kind of reference to it. Even the dogs' breakfast of the next two films cannot dim the brilliance of the original. I watch this movie over and over again.

Benny and Joon - Mary Stuart Masterson is, you know, kinda cute I guess. This is a Johnny Depp movie, but not so much a Johhny Depp movie, know what I mean? No? Well just look at the cast. It's pretty awesome, right down to the bit players. Aidan Quinn was great as Benny. And then there's Julianne Moore, Oliver Platt, Dan Hedaya, William H. Macy. Pretty Awesome, if you don't mind the repetition. Also, Johnny Depp, cause, you know...

The Nightmare Before Christmas - Tim Burton is something of an odd duck, isn't he? Brilliant, but odd. I have heard it said that he made The Nightmare Before Christmas because the studio wouldn't let him make The Corpse Bride at the time. I like the former better than the latter. And the sound in this DVD is top notch. If you have a surround sound system with a good subwoofer, this is the film to give it a bit of a workout.

Chicken Run - A fun animated romp from back when Mel Gibson was still cool. It also cashed in on the incredible popularity, at the time, of Nick Park, of Wallace and Grommit fame. What can I say? Virtually every character in this thing is a hot chick.

Payback - Mel again, in perhaps my favourite of his movies. His character, Porter, is enormously amusing in his insistence that all he wants is the seventy thousand dollars he claims is owed to him, even in the face of even higher offers. "
We went for breakfast... in Canada. We made a deal; if she'd stop hookin', I'd stop shooting people." [pause] "Maybe we were aiming high."

Casablanca - In an earlier edition of this list I mentioned The Maltese Falcon. This is the other of what are arguably the two best known Bogart movies. I think this one is the better of the two. I like the pacing better, and I think the tangled web weaved by Rick Blaine in this film is far more clever than the one woven by Sam Spade in the other. I am willing to bet that there are many out there who would disagree with me.
   That's OK. I'll get over it.

<< previous ten                     next ten >>


luddie343 said...

Interesting Paul.  I'll always love Casablanca, and J Depp showed the start of his genius in Benny & Joon.  Nice to see someone knows what "penultimate" means lol I'm always using "penumbra" in my astonomy posts.  xo CATHY  

princesssaurora said...

I love Armaggedon!  I have watched it with my kids since they were little... fast forwarding thru teh hawt love scene!  LOL  Casablanca... in my top 5 movies of ALL time.  <sigh>  I also liked Chicken Run and Cody Banks.  

Speaking of kids movies... did you ever watch See Spot Run?  OMG... I pee my pants laughing at that one!!!  I just got it on dvd!!!  It is HILARIOUS!  Paul Sorvino is so funny... one testicle at a time.  I'll let you ponder that!  LOL

be well,

simianfarmer said...

The pure scientific impossibility of Armageddon made me want to hate it.  But I just couldn't.  It was such a fun movie to watch.  There was still a part of me that died on the inside, knowing that there would be millions of people thinking that any of that was remotely possible.

Payback is my all-time favourite movie to watch whenever I'm in a bad mood.  I first saw it in a theatre in Moscow, Idaho after having had a HUGE fight over the phone with my then-girlfriend.  I felt way better afterward, even if still a little retributive.  Great show.

I find myself agreeing with your overall list more than I thought I would.  Also surprised that there are so few of your selections I haven't seen.  (Like Agent Cody Banks.  I still have no intention of seeing that one.)


lurkynat said...

Maltest Falcon .. a great film

tenyearnap said...

I loooove Nightmare Before Christmas. I want to make life size wooden cut outs to use as Xmas lawn decorations with a Santa all tied up in a chair.
(I think this would go well with my other dream Xmas lawn decor: take a couple "blow up women dolls" and fill them with helium. Stick some wings on them and fly the Xmas angels over the house. Their mouths already look like they are singing in the heaveny choir, right?) --Cin

bgilmore725 said...

I loved your choices Paul... I haven't seen Underworld, the only one on your list i haven't seen, actually. Vampire movies don't inspire me. But Matrix... that could have continued and I'd watch them over and over again. Hey congrats on winning the Caption contest... it sounded like a Harry Potter phrase. Cute and clever. bea