For The Thrill Of It All…The Magic Of Movies
Though I have been writing for websites for quite some time, I am fairly new to the “blog” world and I have now been tagged for my first “meme”…thanks to my good friend Stephen at Peel Slowly. It took me a few minutes to figure out what the hell a “meme” was, but I think I’ve got it and I’m here to participate!!!
From what I understand, here is how it works:
Stephen of Checking on My Sausages and Joel “MovieMan0283” Bocko of The Dancing Image have cosponsored it, and the directive is to come up with a collection of similarly-themed images that celebrate the “thrill of cinema.”
Here are the rules:
1. pick as many pictures as you want, so long as they are screen-captures
2. pick a theme, any theme, as long as it supports the notion of “the thrill of cinema”
(I apologize if any of you have already been tagged…like I said, I am new at this.)
As I began this little journey to find “similarly themed” images that represent “the thrill of cinema”, I originally found it extremely difficult. There were a multitude of images that came to mind, but finding a theme was what was stumping me. So ultimately I have decided to abandon the notion of “similarly themed” (at least in the traditional sense) and instead focus on what “the thrill of cinema” means to me.
Surely there are more “thrilling” images to be found in STAR WARS, but this one is special. A simple farm boy looking to the horizon and longing for more; longing for adventure and longing to be a hero…little does he know that 60 minutes later, he will have saved a princess and an entire galaxy.
As for the image, well no one image could do the man or the film justice, but with the double-exposure, the dreamy quality and the film projectors…not only does this one say “magic of movies” to me, it reminds me that the film itself, is actually about the “magic of movies”.
SUSPIRIA (Argento, 1997) With this film, Italian horror maestro Dario Argento put his stamp on the “fairytale”. Aided by vivid primary colors and exotic production design, Argento weaved a horrific tale of witchcraft that, to this day, is so incredibly unique that many consider it to be the benchmark of Italian horror cinema.
This is far from the most “thrilling” image that can be found in SUSPIRIA, but if you were lucky enough to go into this film completely cold the first time you saw it, like I was, the minute Suzy Bannion (played by Jessica Harper) leaves that airport in the pouring rain and gets into that cab, you know that you’re “not in Kansas anymore”; and you have no idea the ride you’re in for. The colors, the rain, Goblin’s musical score…it sets a mood…to say the least.
ZOMBI 2 (a.k.a. ZOMBIE) (Fulci, 1979) The phrase “Fulci Lives” has become a mantra for horror fanatics all over the world since the director’s death in 1996 and it is true. Fulci does live…in the hearts and minds of every person that is completely awed by the visual of a zombie wrestling a shark under water. Leave it do the Italians to create a cinematic moment as magically transcendent as this one…and as shamelessly exploitive. God bless Lucio Fulci.
THE MATRIX (Wachowski & Wachowski, 1999) With two unbelievably bad sequels, appreciation for this film has fallen by the wayside since its release 11 years ago. What I can say about it is that it came at the exact right time for me. I was having a less than pleasant experience at film school and had, for all intents and purposes, “lost my way.” Then one afternoon I walked into a movie theater and watched a movie that ultimately reminded me why I loved movies and why I aspired to make them. It may sound stupid, but THE MATRIX and specifically the moment of realization pictured above, made me feel like I did when I was kid watching the original STAR WARS trilogy.
FEED THE KITTY (Jones, 1952) Few filmmakers understand the importance of “a look” better than Chuck Jones and FEED THE KITTY is his tour de force. I’m not sure animation, or even comedy gets much better than this. It will make you laugh one minute and then make you shed a tear the next…and it is only 7 minutes long. The gags are almost entirely visual and it is purely cinematic. Chuck Jones was a genius…and I don’t throw that word around lightly.
Ironically, looking at the images I have chosen, I now see that there is a bit of a theme going through the majority of them. I’ll leave it to you to see if you can figure out what it is.
I would love to keep going, but I think that perhaps this is a good place to stop. Narrowing down images in order to keep this post down to a reasonable length has become difficult, but I will leave you with one last image. Consider it a bonus, just to round out the collection to an even ten.