Still using Sergio Leone and the Infield Fly Rule’s surveys trying to charge myself this October between working, moving (there will be a post about that shortly), binging horror movies, trying to get back into writing here, and generally just trying to keep above water, like Spicoli on those waves of his dreams.
Since I’m here and you’re here, let’s use our time to go all the way back once again to 2005 (again the year I actually started getting full throttle in my film buffing in 7th grade, which may also have been the year I first saw Fast Times at Ridgemont High) to the very first quiz on that side – thereby a pop quiz in the most literal sense because of how unexpected it must have been for Dennis’ readers at the time. Now, I have the benefit of hindsight so…
1) The one movie you’d drop everything just to see again.
There’s several… I feel like it’d be cheating to go with Johann Lurf’s ★ since that’s essentially an art piece and constantly changing but I literally emailed him at one point asking for a copy during COVID times and got no response. Ah well.
Anyway I guess barring that, I had plane tickets to Minneapolis just to see Cunningham in 3D at the Walker Art Center and unfortunately that got cancelled because of COVID. So now I’ve seen it but it’s in the 2D version and since there’s no 3D home video version of it available, if the movie ever shows up anywhere near me in 3D… I’m jumping on it.
2) The one movie you never want to see again under any circumstances.
That’s a toughie since I do say that there are movies I’d never see again, but “under any circumstances” adds a new level of magnitude to the question. I guess I will go with Birdemic: Shock and Terror, a legendary bad movie that had no ironic pleasure for me and since it’s been reviewed on this site, I have no reason to revisit as opposed to say… Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker.
3) The most treasured DVD in your personal collection.
I’ll play by 2005 rules and not involve blu-rays, so my most treasured DVD is the copy of Army of Darkness I got autographed by Bruce Campbell when they shot Burn Notice outside the building my mom works at. I even recall getting daggers shot at me by Gabrielle Anwar.
4) The most coveted DVD you like to add to your collection.
I was just talking to someone about the Limited Edition Wooden Box set for The Wicker Man with the 95-minute version and how I wish I had that to round off my copies of the movie. I got the 88-minute version by buying it off my local Hollywood Video when it was closing down and that’s how I first got exposed to one of my favorite movies and then I got the 92-minute Final Cut Blu-Ray. Just need that one other available cut for a movie whose actual director’s cut will never be available.
Also while I do have my white whale copy of Dawn of the Dead Ultimate Edition as either a birthday or Christmas gift from my friend B-R-… it unfortunately did have the sleeve so that’s still on the hunt. But it had the Zombi cut, baby!
5) Best NYC movie?
I’m stuck between The French Connection and Do the Right Thing. I’ll probably split down the middle and claim it’s The Last Dragon. I did tell Taimak that Bruce Leroy was my guide to the city before I even moved there.
6) Best LA movie?
Repo Man. Repo Man with Alex Cox directing and Robby Muller shooting captured my myth of Los Angeles just the same as The Last Dragon captured my myth of New York City.
7) Best movie ever made in or about your home state, or country?
I’ll go with home state first, Florida: Magic Mike, although that might change to Miami Blues whenever I rewatch that.
Country, Algeria: The easy answers are The Battle of Algiers or Z, but I posit as a contender to the title Chronicle of the Years of Fire. Plus that one is actually made by an Algerian.
8) Humphrey Bogart or Jimmy Cagney?
Cagney has almost certainly got more overall talent given his versatility and his vaudevillian background and physicality. But Bogey has been a guy that I wanted to emulate for a long time so I hand it over to him.
9) Best movie remake?
My favorite is His Girl Friday, but if I had to give it to what I consider the Best… it has to be Some Like It Hot. Hot hot hot.
10) The one movie you’d most like to see remade, and by whom (director, cast).
I honestly can’t think of one, so I’ll just go with my default sarcastic answer:
Larry Kassanoff’s Casablanca starring Charlie Sheen, Hilary Duff, Eva Longoria, Wayne Brady, Christopher Lloyd, etc.
11) Best integration of an existing piece of music into a movie.
“La Marseillaise” in Casablanca sung by a cast of refugees in defiance drowning out Nazi scum.
12) Most unwelcome pop song typically used in a movie montage.
I don’t know about “typically used”, but that Amazing Spider-Man 2 montage to fucking that banal “Gone, Gone, Gone” song made me want to set myself on fire. Doesn’t help that that song was overplayed during my time as a lifeguard.
I guess my actual answer for typically used is how every kids movie in the 1990s to early 2000s had to use “It Takes Two” for whatever reason.
13) Movie that made you want to change your life, or the world.
Movie that made me want to change my life? Miami Connection.
Movie that made me want to change the world? Xanadu.
14) Katherine Hepburn or Carole Lombard?
Katharine Hepburn, which I almost feel bad about saying given how unfairly short Lombard’s career was and how excellent she was during it.
15) Your father’s favorite movie.
Probably either The Battle of Algiers or L’Opium et le Bâton. The Algerian Revolution obviously is a big thing.
16) Your mother’s favorite movie.
If it’s not some Egyptian movie I hardly know, it’s either Kill Bill or Aliens. I’m confident it’s one of those and too lazy to ask.
17) The movies’ most handsome leading man or character actor, and the role which most perfectly featured him.
Alain Delon and I don’t know if we’re talking best performance – which would obviously be Le Samourai – but I’d claim Purple Noon the best use of his features.
18) The movies’ most beautiful leading lady or character actress, and the role which most perfectly featured her.
I’m between Maggie Cheung or Diana Rigg (Grace Jones was also a contender until I remembered she isn’t really a character actor or regular leading lady). I’d probably go with Irma Vep for the former and On Her Majesty’s Secret Service for the latter (If I had seen Vamp, I imagine Jones would be that one and not Conan the Destroyer or A View to a Kill).
I’m giving the edge to Rigg because she actually has been my screen crush for decades now, but…
19) Jimmy Stewart or Cary Grant?
Cary Grant and despite loving Jimmy, it’s not a tough question. Grant is my favorite actor, after all.
20) Your favorite actor who almost nobody knows about.
In the past couple of years, I’ve been introduced to the work of Dominique Abel (and his collaborator/wife Fiona Gordon) and I expect he has more popularity in France than in the US but I don’t hear him discussed very much in either circles. Which is outrageous for a couple of actors and directors whose physical elements are extraordinary enough to make for the sort of silent cinema worthy of Chaplin and Keaton but with a gleeful eye for color and mood that only modernity would allow (shit, that last part refers more to Abel and Gordon’s ability as directors but still!).
21) Your favorite actress who almost nobody knows about.
Obviously for balance, I could go with Fiona Gordon here. But let’s switch things up here, shall we?
She’s probably getting a lot more eyes on her thanks to Black Panther, but Danai Gurira has not had nearly enough eyes on her and frankly she should have been getting more attention since Mother of George or even The Walking Dead.
22) The movie you love that everyone else seems to hate.
The Adventures of Rocky and Bullwinkle is great. It’s you all who are crazy.
23) The movie you hate that everyone else seems to love.
Scream sucks. It’s you all who are crazy.
24) Your most memorable moment related to the movies.
My first time going to a movie theater by myself simply because I could and it was Evil Dead II on 35mm at the no longer existing Madcap Theater in Tempe and it opened with a Lowe’s theater etiquette starring the Sesame Street Muppets that really made me aware of where I was.
25) Your most unpleasant moment related to the movies.
Probably my dad busting in late at night wondering why we weren’t asleep because he saw the tv light through my window coming in.
26) Most revolting eating scene in a movie.
You’d think it wouldn’t work as well nowadays, but The Private Lives of Henry VIII still got it going. (Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom is disqualified on account of racism)
27) Joan Crawford or Bette Davis?
Joan Crawford off the power in Johnny Guitar.
28) Your favorite sports movie.
Bull Durham but maybe one more rewatch of A League of Their Own will finally dethrone that. Or finally sitting down to watch Hoop Dreams.
29) Your favorite movie sex scene.
In the Realm of Senses and I am too much of a gentlemen to describe it.
30) Your favorite movie car chase.
The Moscow sequence in The Bourne Supremacy. Full-on impact, maybe the best adaptation of Greengrass’ trademark confusion into a genre movie setpiece.
31) Your favorite death scene.
Roy Batty in Blade Runner. Calm, satisfied, at peace.
32) Your favorite movie gross-out.
The vomit-feeding sequence in Audition. Legit gets me cringing.
33) Your favorite movie rating.
Sweet Sweetback’s Badasssss Song being “rated X by an all-white jury”.
34) Your favorite movie theater.
I’ve mentioned this in a past post but can’t remember where but it’s Pollack Tempe Cinemas. A second-run theater in a strip mall in Southeast Tempe whose lobby was in hot pink and populated by endless wax figures and would be a cheap escape for me weekly in its big auditoriums and good projection.
35) Your favorite movie snack.
Buttered popcorn, Raisinets, Peanut M&Ms, Twizzlers, occasionally Dots if I’m feeling really self-loathing.
36) Your favorite movie speech.
Fuck, I already used the Blade Runner “Tears in Rain” speech in my “favorite movie deaths”. It’s my answer for sure, but just to have something new… I’ll go with Yang-Yang’s final speech in Yi Yi.
37) Your favorite movie about movies.
8 1/2, which obviously uses that as a pretext to be about Federico Fellini himself but in that way engages with what the movies reveal about the maker and the viewer and vice versa and the dreams in between.
38) Your favorite Hammer horror movie.
The Revenge of Frankenstein. The darkest thing that studio ever did and it carries that weight marvelously.
39) Your favorite Kurt Russell Disney movie.
I’ve only seen Sky High and The Fox and the Hound (which I’m sure is not what Dennis is looking for, but you work with what you gotta). I hate The Fox and the Hound and was pleasantly surprised by Sky High, so that one.
40) Your favorite Dean Jones Disney movie.
Would you believe that I have never seen a single one of his Disney movies? I mainly recognize him for being OG Bobby in Company before OG Bobby.