Monthly Archives: February 2010

Another Opening, Another Show

For the past few weeks, and for the next couple of weeks I am overwhelmed with the musical that I am playing for. Since I don’t have time to see any movies, and in honor of the musical that I’m in, I thought I’d do a post on my favorite musical movies! Action!

West Side Story This movie is perfect. Starring Natalie Wood, the music is abolustely brilliant (By Stephen Sondheim and Leonard Bernstein), the Jerome Robbins choreography inspiring, and the Romeo and Juliet is timeless. One of the most amazing movies I’ve ever seen.

Singin’ In The Rain I know I talked about this one in one of my previous posts, but it truly is one of my favorites. Really anything with Gene Kelley is great. A great singer, and dancer, his choreography in the ballet scene ending the film is spectacular. Some others of his I recommend are An American In Paris, and Brigadoon.

Sweeney Todd Who knew Johnny Depp could sing! Well now we all do. This movie is so Burton-esque, any fan of his work should see it (and I garuntee will love it). The movie is extremely well cast, and all of the characters work terrifically together. The horrific sadness of the plot is perfectly balances with a bittersweet, dark, humor. Just a great film overall!

Kiss Me Kate This I only include on the list because it’s the musical that my high school is producing this year. The story of a musical within a musical is a little cliche, but the juxtaposition between modern day and Shakespeare puts an interesting twist on things. Starring Ann Miller, it’s kind of a silly movie, but fun just the same.

Other greats that make the list but not in detail are the classics The Sound of Music, Grease, The Wizard of Oz and Mary Poppins. Who cares how many times you’ve heard Judy Garland belt out her song about the rainbow, or watched John Travolta do a split, it really just never gets old!

To all those in the production of Kiss Me Kate, break a leg!

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Happy Valentine’s Day!

In honor of the romantic holiday, I’m going to fill you in on some of my favorite romance films. Some are silly, some serious, and some just plain romantic. Let me know your favorites!

When Harry Met Sally 1989 starring Billy Crystal and Meg Ryan, this movie is one of my absolute favorites (romance movies or otherwise). The tale of two people who meet, and then encounter each other in different ways over times, their relationship changing, it’s funny and sweet. One of the cutest love stories I’ve ever seen.

Pride and Prejudice 2005 I am a personal fan of the newer version of this film, but the older version (starring Colin Firth) is also quite good. The more recent film starring Keira Knightley, the cinametography is absolutely beautiful. The score is stunning, and can move me to tears by itself. The acting is good. Although a little slow, the scenery is aboslutely gorgeous, and the ever so subtle nature of Jane Austen’s writing comes through in this classic story.

Love Actually 2003 Although the plot revolves around Christmas, this film is first and foremost a love story. The film follows the paths of a variety of different stories, all intertwined. Starring some great actors (including Emma Thompson, Liam Neeson, Hugh Grant, Alan Rickman, and many others), this story is devestatingly sad while being extremely touching and hopeful at the same time. Once again, the score is brilliant.

Casablanca 1942 As cliche as it might be, I can not help be swept away the romance between the timeless Humphrey Bogart and the exquisite Ingrid Bergman. Containing some of the most famous film lines of all time, this movie is a true classic.

Some Like It Hot 1959 This movie starring Jack Lemon, Tony Curtis and Marilyn Monroe is absolutely fantastic. It’s hilarious, it’s got some great music, it’s got Marilyn and it’s romantic. It’s got everything. You simply have to fall in love with the charmingly ridiculous story.

Let me know some of your favorite romantic movies! And I hope everyone has a lovely Valentine’s Day :]

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Vacation!

I don’t know about the rest of the country, but here in Needham, it is vacation week! For those of you who plan on hunkering down at home and getting some zzz’s, here’s a list of fun movies to watch that won’t strain your brain.

Mean Girls 2004 “If you’re from Africa, why are you white?” Really, after those classic words, what more do you need?

Cluelesss 1995 added at the request of a friend, this movie personally makes me laugh. I’m not a huge fan, but it’s very true that this movie won’t come near to straining your intellectual capacity. Although, after Britanny Murphy’s death, this movie seems a little bit more erie than it ever has…

What Women Want 2000 This movie is one of my favorites from the (late and nearly not) 90s, (though it is still very much a 90s movie). Mel Gibson (although crazy in real life) never really bothered me on stage, and in this comic performance, I actually like him a lot. Even though it’s got a cheesy ending, and all of that, the premise is cute, and actually done well. Definitely generates laughs!

The Parent Trap 1998 I’ve seen this movie more than a dozen times, and it just never gets old! Lindsay Lohan is still adorable, the music is quirky and cute, and their handshake on the dock is simply irresistible! In addition, the sunny California scenes might pep us all up a bit during the Februrary Break.

Singin’ In The Rain 1952 Really anything with Gene Kelley in it is okay with me, but this one is particularly charming. Donald O’Conner is hilarious, and Kelley’s dancing is superb. If this is your cup of tea, I highly recommend An American In Paris, featuring Gershwin’s 20s tunes. Absolutely fantastic.

Hope you find some solace in any of these laid-back favorites. What are your vacation faves?

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What’s hangin’ braaah?

Following yesterday’s little beach tangent, I’ve decided to follow up with a post concerning some of my favorite beach and surfer movies. Usually these movies aren’t fine, just plain fun.

Point Break 1991, this movie stars Keanu Reeves and Patrick Swayze. A tale involving cobs, the president robbers and the greatest storm ever, this movie is all over the place. Fast paced and with great surfing and beach shots, as well as some great shots of them skydiving, this movie makes up in imagery what it lacks in acting.

Blue Crush 2002, starring Kate Bosworth, this movie is both a surfer flick as well as a chick flick. About girl power and all of that, it’s a cute film with some beautiful scenery.

Into the Blue 2005, starring Jessica Alba and Paul Walker. I don’t really remember the plot of this movie, but who  cares when Walker is half naked and the beaches are on the edge of gorgeous?

So, the next time you’re feeling a punch of SAD during the winter, or you just need to watch someone surf to remind yourself how crazy it is, and you’re never going to try it (I did once, and I don’t quite recommend it), make sure to turn to one of these films. No matter if the plot is horrible, or the acting is awful. There are half naked men, women in bikinis, and beautiful beaches to be seen!

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A tangent

Since it is my blog, I think I’m entitled to a little a little tangent, yes? Well, I found these pictures online today and they’re absolutely stunning. They have nothing to do with film, though perhaps I’ll do a post about the best surfer movies, or something along those lines. Well, here they are. Simply enjoy:)

I thoroughly miss the beach, the warm weather and the ocean, so here is quick reminder of what’s to come in a few months.

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Oscar Noms

Oscars are my favorite time of year!! And unlike the Golden Globes, I won’t drop the ball on this one (well, maybe). Anyway, if you  click here you can see the nominations for this year. This year, there are 10 best pictures nods (yes, count ’em, 10!). Which essentially means every single movie that came out this year that had any critical acclaim was nominated, but hey, what the heck. My personal favorite underdog in all of this is District 9. If you haven’t seen it, go now. The story is absolutely amazing. Great film (and who doesn’t love listening to a South African accent for 2 hours?).

So tune in Sunday, March 7th to be part of the excitement! And be sure to catch the red carpet before hand. All the stars will be there 😉

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Sweet Smell of Success

This film, from 1957, is pure poetry. When I say that it stars Burt Lancaster and Tony Curtis, you should immediately salvate. But, in case that didn’t hook you, I shall expand my explanation.

Directed by Alexander Mackendrick, and written by Clifford Odets, each line in this movie is literally poetry. Lancster plays a power hungry, literarily brutish gossip columist. Curtis plays a press agent, not doing too well, desperate to become the next JJ (Lancaster). He feeds bits of gossip to Lancaster who treats him like the scum of the earth, and in reality, they both are.

While both men are articulate, their words simply dazzling, their characters are plain dirt. When the film came out, it was so unpopular because the men were so cynical, so out for themselves that they were willing to hurt anyone. No one wanted to watch a film about these men who were, in reality, the ugliest people you could ever meet. Curtis is brilliant–his character is out for himself, and will literally do anything to get ahead, including sell out his down and out female friend to a grimy politician. These little acts are cruel and sadistic, though done in utter desperation and necessity. Their limits know no bounds.

Although the background story, which includes JJ’s little sister falling in love with a musician JJ disapproves of, is rather irrelevant and badly acted, the major story of grimy men living their lives in New York in the time is beautiful. A tragic story, scored by a background of apt restless jazz in the background–lively, sparatic, almost as desperate and unsure as the characters it’s backing up.

With a brilliant script, great acting (and actors) and a fantastic score, this movie is definitely two thumbs up. Although much of Curtis’ news is “four days old” and JJ “won’t buy it” this movie is still fresh and new, despite the year tagged next to it’s name. A definite classic.

Rating: 4,5/5 stars

Overall: the script is absolutely gorgeous, but the background story is irrelevant, and rather silly. Curtis and Lancaster are brilliant, despite their less than so contemporaries.

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