Hey fellow Screenederers, since I apparently have a sleeping disorder at the moment I figured I'd do something productive and spend the entire day lazing about watching movies I'd been meaning to see. This is my courageous story.
1am - Rude Awakenings
"Oh hey, I'm awake. That's peachy. 1am seems like a perfectly reasonable time to wake up. I don't seem to be able to go back to sleep either. Whoop-de-doo. I think I'll spend the day watching movies, since all my games suck right now. White people problems. But first, three hours of internet procrastination. And a sandwich."
4am - "World's Greatest Dad"
So here's the first movie I lined up, after reading about it from a Screened news item. It was actually pretty good! Just the kind of dark-as-hell comedy about dead teenagers to shake the sleepies out of one's eyes. As I'm sure many of you know having following Screened's advice some time ago and watched it yourselves, Robin Williams injects meaning into his son's David Carradine-esque demise by forging various items that suggest his son was a tormented poet rather than the creepy douche most people correctly ascertained him to be. After a tense, long culmination of the lie and the subsequent cathartic release, the movie ends fairly happily with pot brownies and zombie marathons. It made me hungry. Either for brownies or brains; I lacked the necessary cognitive power to make that distinction at 5am.
6am - "Black Dynamite"
One might say I followed up a black comedy with another, but that might get me flagged by some sort of internet civil rights committee, so I'll just say that this is a fantastic blaxploitation homage that I'd been seeing out-of-context clips of for the best part of two years now. Michael Jai White, who I had previously seen getting shot all to hell by the potent team of Steven Seagal and Bill Duke in Exit Wounds
, nunchuks his way across the 'hood to save all the heroin-addicted orphans and stage-direction-reading black militants from, I dunno, Kung-Fu Treachery and Nixon apparently. It had enough quotable lines and silliness to keep anyone amused, but I kind of wished I had seen more of the classic blaxploitation it was directly referencing. Turns out all the blaxploitation I'd seen were also homages and spoofs, like Black to the Future
, A Blaffair to Rememblack
and Cleopatra Schwartz
(as well as movies that weren't just spoof trailers like Jackie Brown). Ha! I wrote this shit before I entered the blog writing page!
8am - Break
Grabbing some breakfast and listening to the NDX podcast must be a pretty awesome way to wake up on a normal Tuesday morning. I wouldn't know.
After a couple of hours of searching for God in Giant Bomb's database (dude's been in quite a few games it seems), I went back to the movies I had carefully filed away in a large stack labeled "unseen shit".
10am - "Moon"
At this point, I was starting to feel like how the older Sam Bell clone was looking towards the end of this amazing sleeper hit. Reminiscent of Silent Running, which was more or less the same winning combination of a man, his thoughts, his quiet space-station habitat and his adorable robot buddy, Moon is the sort of quiet Sci-Fi that's become an unfortunate rarity these days. Contemplative rather than active, it tells its story with no great precipitance and with high stakes that are implied rather than implicit.
It's pretty much just a dude and another of that same dude on the moon, being ironically awoken every day by Chesney Hawke's one-hit-wonder "I am the One and Only", to endlessly play Mass Effect 2's resource-mining mini-game. One last thing I wanted to mention were the two executives that you briefly spot during live feeds from the company HQ, played by English comedian/actors Benedict Wong (no stranger to suspenseful Sci-Fi, as he was an early casualty of the also excellent Sunshine
) and Matt Berry (who has been playing these unctuous suave assholes
for quite some time).
12am - "The Good, The Bad, The Weird"
Not too long ago, back when I still had disposable income, I made a point to follow Korea's burgeoning film industry, viewing its more interesting gems as they became available in the now sadly terminated Tartan Asia Extreme R2 DVD range. I was suitably impressed by Park Chan-wook
's Vengeance trilogy, as well as picking up NK-paranoia drama Shiri
, spooky soldier ghost-fest R-Point
and Wanted-lite wish-fulfillment goofy action fare like Volcano High
. One movie in particular I enjoyed was major mind-screw A Bittersweet Life
, which either told the meteoric rise and fall through Korea's underground criminal empire of complete badass Lee Byung-hun
(yep, the face model for Lost Planet. Oh, that wasn't what you were going to say? Huh? Storm Shadow? Oh yeah, that was him too, wasn't it?) or the entirely imagined meteoric rise and fall of same as he quietly shadow boxes during the ending credits. With the same star and director, but an entirely different tone and setting, "The Good, The Bad, The Weird" (no "and"s in here it seems. Hey, if Google doesn't need one this movie's title sure doesn't) is a fairly traditional "nogoodniks race each other to the treasure" Western with oodles of what I can only assume is acceptable Korean humor, like mooks getting killed by sharp objects forcibly shoved up places where things should never be shoved up. It had some pretty nice shoot-outs though. And that awesome track from Kill Bill. Yeah, you could do worse.
2pm - Break
Another break? What am I, some kind of break-taking wuss? That gets hungry? After a few rounds of tuna sandwiches, I was ready to go once again. Stuff's brain food you know. What with all the dolphins in it, because you know how smart they are.
4pm - "Kick-Ass"
I continue today's theme of violent dark comedies with this occasionally brutal comic book adaptation of a guy who gets really good at getting his ass beat. I'm still not entirely sure of what to make of this movie; it kind of glorified vigilantes (you'll get Youtube hits! Comic books! Intercourse!) while taking great strides to point out how it would physically and psychologically mess up anyone involved in such a practice - oh, so like every other masked vigilante movie ever. I did enjoy Nicholas Cage's bizarre Adam West impression. And the random appearance of Lock Stock associates Dexter Fletcher
and Jason Flemyng
as heavies for an Italian mob boss for some reason. Not sure why I keep pointing out British character actors, though. Must be that sleep-deprived psychosis this leprechaun's been telling me all about.
6pm - "District 9"
District 9 is best known as that apartheid movie where prawn-shaped aliens take the place of black people. It's also like the third movie on this list where a dude falls apart, and the second where that's literal. It's a pretty ugly movie all round, but worth a look in. I'd feel guilty not recommending it, really, considering what it represents so harshly and overtly. Political movies, eh? And here I was thinking it was a heartwarming tale about bug aliens finding love. Okay, maybe not.
9pm - Conclusion
I'm just about spent at this point. I've had an insufficient amount of sleep and getting the full 24 hour movie-thon experience doesn't seem like it's going to be possible, not if I'm actually going to watch anything without constantly drifting off. I watched six pretty great movies today, though, so I think that qualifies as a day well spent.