Evil is a big red movie box!

Okay I’ve been resisting this impulse for weeks now but I’m giving into it wholeheartedly because all I see is red red red movie rental boxes everywhere and my loathing of them and what they represent has increased to the level of “Sledge-Hammer Now!” I’m not adverse to an appearance of Thor with his hammer at all–hint, hint (we do so adore the Long Dark Tea Time of the Soul…ah Dougie, your imaginative wit is sorely missed). Why do I abhore these vending machines of cheap fast flick fixes? For starters you can’t have a conversation with them. Nope. No one is ever going to discover some deliciously quirky flim like Wristcutters via a big red rental box.  Big red boxes are just big red boxes–they do not view movies. They only ‘spew’ forth movies at the behest of a plastic card inserted into their mechanical guts. Big red boxes are incapable of sharing their delight of the visual imagery of a huge lotus pond in Tears of the Black Tiger. Big red boxes do not engage in debates about Michael Clayton being just another lawyer movie or not (I argue most definitely NOT becausse there’s no escaping the mental context of Tom Wilkinson’s incredible line, “I am Shiva the god of death!” and everything that concept entails in the film.)  Anyone at a loss for why I consider the big red boxes lurking everywhere as Evil? If so–then try it this way: they’re one more mark of the devil incarnate in philistine mentality. And before anyone gets any ideas about taking moi to task over the word ‘philistine’ as a result of confusing it with an ethnic group–do so please, pretty please with raspberries on top–google the definition of the word before posting any hate mail or ye shall be soundly smoted–yes, I’m going with ‘smoted’ rather than smitten for you grammatical purists–and I will because I can and I can because this is ‘my’ blog post.  Now, without any further self repression I offer some films to the sad soul of the blogger who couldn’t stand watching another real downer.   I’ve gone about this list of the moment with the thought in mind of supporting the argrument of what the red box cannot and will not do for anyone. So, here are some films that probably will not be featured on the facings of said incarnations of evil(furthermore, they give the color ‘red’ a bad reputation). In no particular order:

Run Lola Run–and Franke Potente as Lola does just that three ways to a screaming climax.

28 Days Later–there are worse thngs than zombies to run from–as this film conveys when it turns into an entirely different sort of horror genre about midway.

The Killing Fields–Do tell if this kills your appetite for war movies after viewing. It certainly did squash mine for years. True story of Din Pran’s struggle to survive.

Billy Elliot–Let’s dance away from the dark side for a moment, shall we?

Off the Map–Hmm…This lifestyle might offer suggestions for everyone feeling the economic squeeze.

Black Robe–1634, Hurons, Quebec, Jesuits, need I say more?

The Commitments–Oh yes, indeed, the Irish have SOUL.

Amelie–And the French have Audrey Tautou who can beat the acting the pants off anyone at will when she’s at the top of her game–which is quite ofen. She’s got quality control under her belt.

Joyeux Noel—Something else from the French–1914 Christmas trench war–and not just the obvious battleground as the Irish priest discovers much to his dismay.

Kontroll–Another aspect of control–Hungarian style. Oh  yeah, subways as hell? purgatory? redemption grounds? Totally cool.

Smoke Signals–Storytelling, storytelling, and more storytelling–and a young Adam Beach does listen listen listen to his friend’s stories as they road trip in search of some anwers.

Edge of America–A true story for the basketball fans among you.  Wes Studi is the magic working mechanic in this Utah setting.

Strictly Ballroom–The movie one critic deemed much much better than Moulin Rouge. Dancing on the wrong side of the tracks in the land down under.

The Milagro Beanfield War–Because we do so love magical realism–and Joe  Mondragon is so damn ‘cute’ even when dodging bullets.

Mongol–More epic history–Genghis Khan falls in love and what a love story it is. View on the largest screen availabe to you because the scenery is KILLER Beautiful and a character in its own right.

Brotherhood of the Wolf–“Wildly Entertaining!” The only movie screening I’ve attended where the entire audience stood up cheering and clapping at the end. I kid not.

The Host–Do NOT watch this dubbed the first time because it destroys the sound atmosphere. Go with the subtitles–you can read this therefore you sure as hell can read subtitles.  The BEST monster movie ever–well so far. I mean who knows what these folks might dish up next! 

Zero Effect–Quirky, quirky, quirky for fans of Bill Pullman (as this film shows the man really can act, he’s got more than a pretty face), detective mysteries, and eccentricity.

Night Watch–Ah the eternal battle between good and evil, light and dark, Russian style. Break out the vodka!

Bagdad Cafe–Magic in the middle of absolutely nowhere. Jack Palance as an artist, imagine that.

The Year of Living Dangerously–That actress from Alien and the Lethal Weapon guy before both of those lesser films.

Serenity—Because I can watch it, and the Firefly series, again and again and again and it NEVER gets old! True delights of dialogue, performance, substance, and fun and on and on and on.

Lastly, for now, Beyond Rangoon–for the acting of Patricia Arquette, Frances McDormand, Spalding Gray–John Steele’s photography–and for Burma and the ongoing insanity of Aung San Suu Kyi’s situation as the elected leader currently on trial for the apparent idiocy of an American man.

8 Comments

  1. July 18, 2009 at 2:37 pm

    I thought I was the only one who would sit through a foreign film called Kontroll….I was mesmerized throughout, as to where it was going….strange but cool….enjoyed this portion of your site, thank you.

    • July 18, 2009 at 2:59 pm

      Hi, yeah, strange but very cool film. I watched it three times–each time paying attention to different elements–once just for all the ‘supporting’ characters.–Hey, got any others you’d care to share for suggested viewing? Seriously, I’m always on the prowl for great films–picked up “Distant” yesterday–but have not watched it yet. Have you seen it? It’s Turkish. Good of you to drop in on this sleepy Saturday morning.

  2. July 13, 2009 at 9:45 pm

    Best vampire film I’ve ever seen = “Let the Right One In”–Swedish–and bone-chilling long after the credits. I came across something about there being an American remake in the works–BAH–they’ll foul it up like they did “La Femme Nikita”. In both instances, go with the original films–poweful and true explorations each.

  3. Forrester McLeod said,

    July 10, 2009 at 5:56 pm

    Heylo!

    I might be living under a rock, but I don’t know about the big red box and you make me happy for that!

    We share delight in some of the same films. Others you name I haven’t seen, but will check out if ever I am of the Netflix universe again. Are they the big red box? Hmmmmm……

    May I toss “The King of Hearts”, “Brazil”, “Wings of Desire”, and “The Secret of Roan Inish” into the mix? Some of my very favorites!

    Have a Great One and Thanks for Your list and the warning of things big, red, and boxy…:)

    • July 10, 2009 at 6:29 pm

      Oh yes, Brazil!!! and The Secret of Roan Inish and the others–all great flims. Oh keep tossing.
      As for the bg red box–oo not Nexflix but literally big red boxes that are cropping up in all the local places of public consumption hereabouts–in the grocery stores, outside of fast food junkets and the like.One movie rental place, the better by far because of the depth and range of its foreign film holdings, pleasant atmosphere and truly film interested staff has closed its doors due to these monstrosities. The other place hangs on by lowering its fees to compete.

      • July 10, 2009 at 10:43 pm

        “Until the End of the World” –writers, dreamers, evil, technology, lovers, and one incredible soundtrack featuring the likes of U2, Depeche Mode, Elvis Costello, R.E.M., Talking Heads, Patti Smith, k.d. Lang, T-Bone Burnett, Lou Reed and others.

  4. July 10, 2009 at 5:38 am

    I’ve seen quite a few of the movies on this list and loved them all — especially “The Host” and “Strictly Ballroom” (which indeed is better than “Moulin Rouge”). Oh, and I agree — in no way is “Michael Clayton” just another lawyer movie.

    • July 10, 2009 at 1:35 pm

      Good day, Sir, did that Manhattan pizza live up to your gastro intestenial expectations? Hmm? What film did you view while consuming said pie? Yes, yes, blogging minds really do want to know. Please do share soon!

      Language plays aside–seriously please do share other movies you’ve loved–especially those compelling enough to watch multiple times becaue of what they offer. I consider a film that I want to watch again immediately after it ends to have asserted a certain sort of ‘staying power’ that draws the mind back to explore and discover and enjoy and relish irregardless of genre or subject matter.
      Now that some common ground has been found, perhaps horizons can expand via the question the big red box cannot even ‘hear’ much less reply to: So, what films have you found surprising satisfying?

      Curious, curious, curious eva be me….


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