Romasuave's A to Z Random Movie Write Off -- one movie junkie's thoughtsMay 28, 2005 Write an essay on this topic.
Popular Products in MoviesThe Bottom Line Twenty six films that I like in varying degrees.
Ah yes. Movies. My second favorite way to enjoy a couple of hours when I have nothing better to do. After reading our host, Romasuave's list I knew this was a write off that I just could not resist. The instructions were simple -- think of a film, going from A to Z, not necessarily the best film, but the first that comes to mind. So without further ado, here is my list. Please feel free to leave any comments about them that you would like, as I tend to have strange selections on this topic.
The Age of Innocence -- Certainly one of the most sumptuous films on the Victorian period to ever reach the screen, adapted from Edith Wharton's novel of the same name. Unrequited love, Pomerarians, roses and silken gloves, all with Daniel Day Lewis, Winona Ryder and Michelle Pfieffer. Yummmy!
Big Night -- One of the best films about food and sibling rivalry ever. Stanley Tucci and Tony Shaloub are great in this one, along with Ian Holms, Isabella Rosselini, Minnie Driver and Alison Janney.
Contact -- one of the best ever science fiction films out there, adapted from the novel by Carl Sagan.
Dangerous Liaisons -- Sex, revenge and debauchery on the eve of the French Revolution. Best film that John Malkovich has ever done as the sinister, amoral Valmont, ready to seduce anyone to the dark side of love. Adapted from the novel that shocked Europe at the end of eighteenth century. Swoon.
Elizabeth -- Cate Blanchett in a rather different story about England's Virgin Queen who became both goddess and myth. Great production values, and while it isn't perfectly accurate, it's not bad either. Cate Blanchett should have gotten the Oscar for this one. Ravishing.
A Fish Called Wanda -- My personal favorite for insane British comedy. Terrific cast, preposterous plot, and some great lines. Hysterical.
The Governess -- Minnie Driver in Victorian dress who hides her true identity and religion while she falls in love with a wealthy man in a remote Scottish estate. Gorgeously filmed, terrific score, and plenty of emotional angst. Liberating.
The Hours -- another film that received much hype, but one I liked only for the score, and the art direction. An depressingly grim film.
An Ideal Husband -- adaptation of the Oscar Wilde play, done to perfection with Rupert Everett, Cate Blanchett, Julianne More, Minnie Driver and Jeremy Northam. Exquisite.
Jane Eyre -- The BBC miniseries put out in the '80's with Timothy Dalton and Zelah Clarke in the leads. Still the best version out there, filmed in Britain, and gives the whole story. Finally released on DVD this year and with all of the footage. Passionate.
Kundun -- one of the most remarkable films about Buddhism, and especially about the Dalai Lama. Terrific cinematography and score.
The Lion in Winter -- Probably my favorite film about Eleanor of Aquitaine, and the best version is still Katharine Hepburn in the role. Majestic.
Moonstruck -- One of the best films about love ever made. Yes, I know it has Cher in the lead role, but this is still her best film. Silly in spots, but worth it. Romantic.
Nicholas and Alexandra -- the last Imperial rulers of Russia in an ever increasing collision with revolution.
Orlando -- From the novel by Virginia Woolf, about a time traveling person who changes throughout the centuries from gender. Tilda Swinton shines in this one. Radiant.
The Pillow Book -- Ewan MacGregor in pre-Obi Wan days as a young rebel in Hong Kong with a beautiful Japanese woman with an ache for poetry. One of the most disturbing films ever made. Erotic.
Queen Margot -- Murder and religion in Renaissance France. One of the most bloody and disturbing films that you will sit through, but it's also one of the best ever done on the topic as well. Intense.
Restoration -- the one of the few films with Meg Ryan that I can actually sit through. Sam Neill is great as Charles II, with his ladies and King Charles Cavalier Spaniels (sshhh, the real reason I love this film!). One of the few time Robert Downey Jr didn't blow it. Sumptuous.
Sense and Sensibility -- one of my favorite book adaptations ever. Emma Thompson, Kate Winslett, Alan Rickman all shine in one about money and marriage in Regency England.
The Tango Lesson -- My favorite film about dance. Period.
Unfaithful -- I wanted to like this one about modern marriage, but simply could not. Pity. It could have been so much more...
Valmont -- another version of Les Liaisons Dangereuse with Colin Firth and Annette Bening. I loathe this one, as it is nothing more than a creampuff version with pretty costumes and plenty of nudity. Syrupy.
The Wings of the Dove -- another literary adaptation by Henry James, about a scheming young woman, an heiress and the man they both love, all deliciously filmed in Belle Epoque Venice. Helena Bonham Carter finally gets to play a more adult role. Dazzling.
Xanadu -- one of the most pathetic films to ever hit the screen. I will never review this film. Painful.
Young Frankenstein -- next to The Producers, the best film that Mel Brooks ever did. Classic in every way, and worth the laughs.
Zulu -- The British getting their fannies whupped in South Africa when the natives decide to get even. Based on the actual events at Rorke's Drift, and one of the most compelling films about warfare ever done. One day I will finally get around to reviewing it. Manly.
And there you have it, running from A to Z. Of course there is more, but I think I've already expended enough skull sweat on this one. In any case, while I haven't yet reviewed all of these films (and there is one that I won't), one day I might have enough material to do another list like this one. Thank you Romasuave for coming up with such a neat idea!
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