Friday, March 7, 2014
Wednesday, March 5, 2014
Sunday, March 2, 2014
|Only seven more hours to go, folks! Let's keep up that enthusiasm!|
It would hardly be a Best Picture Showcase if I didn't have to drive slowly and anxiously in a snowstorm at least once. I don't know what it is exactly, but I've been attending the AMC movie theater chain's annual marathon of Best Picture nominees for six years now, and the stressful pattern keeps repeating itself. Sometimes, it's on the way there. Other times, it's on the way back. On extremely unlucky days, it's both. Maybe the Academy Awards anger the gods or something. And now that the number of nominees has almost doubled and the event takes two days to finish, the odds against me are stacking up. This year, I was fortunate enough to avoid the snow until the end of the second day. But it was still no fun to have to dig out my car late Saturday, then crawl home at an average speed of 15 mph on streets where there weren't as yet any good ruts to follow. I guess I had been oblivious to what was happening outside yesterday because I was cozy and warm in the hermetically-sealed environment of the ritzy Northbrook Court shopping center. When I wasn't watching hour after hour of award-nominated entertainment, I was dazedly staggering around the wood-and-marble-bedecked corridors of the mega mall, schlepping past Louis Vuitton, Cartier, and Burberry outlets, trying to clear the cobwebs out of my brain.
Let me say that I'm not a great believer in movie marathons. In fact, I think they're a pretty crummy and unfair way to see films. The analogy I always make -- and I'll do it again -- is to eating contests, which are to cuisine what events like the Best Picture Showcase are to cinema. Movies like these, which tend to be serious and on the longish side, suffer a bit when they're stacked one on top of the other. Some of the same basic themes (AIDS, racism, the elderly) and even some of the same actors (Amy Adams, Matthew McConaughey) start to reappear, which may make the audience feel like they've seen the same basic movie two or three times. Still, I plan to keep doing the BPS for the foreseeable future, since it's an efficient way to catch up on a lot of flicks I missed. And speaking of those, let's get to 'em, eh?
Wednesday, February 26, 2014
Monday, February 24, 2014
|See the picture in the lower right hand corner? That's my story!|
Quick update: I managed to sell a story to my favorite entertainment website, The A.V. Club, aka the pop-culture-reviewing spinoff of the satirical newspaper The Onion. It's a goofy little item about child actor Mason Reese. While I realize this is a modest accomplishment indeed, I'm completely psyched about being in the AVC, a site which has been a heavy influence on this blog. Here's a link to the article. I hope you will enjoy it. This was so much fun to write, and I hope I get the chance to write more for them in the future.
Sunday, February 23, 2014
Saturday, February 22, 2014
Wednesday, February 19, 2014
|Ed Wood film festival organizer Dennis Ferrara in his office. Photo by Eric Larned.|
Note the flier for the film festival in the background with the picture of Tor and Vampira.
Note: The promised review of Anatomy of a Psycho (1961) will be posted on February 26, 2014. I trust you can live without it for seven days. As a change of pace this week, I decided to look back at my very earliest experiences as a fan of Edward D. Wood, Jr. In 1992, when I was a 17-year-old high school senior, I wrote an article for the student newspaper about a local Ed Wood film festival and the eccentric professor who organized it. I recently discovered a copy of this article among some personal effects, and it spurred a lot of memories of my youth. I'm including the entire article for your perusal, preceded by a reminiscence about how and why I came to write it.