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Films That I Like

I’m often a little dubious about lists of “my favorite” things, especially where some famous celebrity (or just someone who is famous) is putting them forward. It seems at times to be taken as a chance to look “Deep” or “thoughtful”.

As you can see from my choice, there is little chance of that here :-). And of course, I’m not famous.

 

Blade Runner

The iconic, cult film. Except it wasn’t when it came out in the early 80’s, it got panned by the critics and my film review books gave it 2 out of 4 stars. I didn’t care, I loved it. Ridley Scot’s dark, dirty vision of the distopian near future, the beaten-down and disillusioned character of Deckard played by Harrisson Ford, Rutger Hauer’s physically perfect, angry, psychotic, philosophical villain. Sean Young left me a little cold as the replicant who did not know she was but I thought Daryl Hannah as Pris was excellent.

Something that confused me when I first saw it was that Pris was listed as a pleasure model, Zhora as the assasin martial arts model. (I had it on video, I could rewind the “info” bits and read them). So why was Zhora doing naughty dances with a snake and was not that brilliant at killing Deckard and yet Pris could flip-flap down the corridor and almost rip his head off his shoulders?

 

 Alien/Aliens

Have you noticed a pattern yet?

It is a little questionable my lumping these two films together as, although they are number one and two in a series, they are very different films. And yet that is partly why  I like them.  Alien (another Ridley Scott Direction) is that unusual film which can make you jump even when you have seen it half a dozen times. At the time I first saw it, the claustrophobic atmosphere, realistic human characters and almost absence of the main Alien made for a very tense film I think. Like Blade Runner, I also think the cinematography is cracking (oh dear, I am starting to sound deep or thoughtful). Aliens is so different, a cracking Boys Own action film, lots of guns and fights and posturing one-liners (“Leave her alone, you Bitch!”) . I find the line “you don’t find them screwing each other over for a percentage”  very apt for a for situations I have come across in life. 

The two films rather sum up the differences between Ridley Scott and James Cameron’s style.

When I was at college I was in the Sci Fi society and we put on films. I organised to show Alien and Aliens back-to-back and watching the two in succession could have been a disaster due to the different styles, but it worked really well.

I should mention H.R Giger of course. His artwork went a long way to establishing the uncomfortable feel of the Alien creature.

Shrek

So many clever little references and jokes.

Wallace and Gromit (the whole lot)

So many clever little references and jokes.

Maybe “Shrek” and “Wallace and Gromit” could be used to write a PhD on the cultural differences between the US and the UK?

Comments»

1. PdV - April 4, 2011

Agree on Shrek and W+G: Great to re- and re-watch.

But I had expected you to name a few UK movie icons as well.

I’d nominate Hot Fuzz !

2. dnadba - March 6, 2012

As I’m pretty sure you already know Martin, my top 2 are the same as yours. I hope you have a similar dislike of Alien 3 and upwards? Fingers crossed for Prometheus though eh?

Cheers

Tony

mwidlake - March 6, 2012

I have to say, I quite liked Alien 4 but not in the same league. I think it could have been a brilliant film but, and I pause over this, the low budget stopped that. The reason I pause is I wonder if Alien 4 was more expensive than Alien in real terms. It was good, but lacked that original style, you know?


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