8/2/08

Theoretical Film Festival

There's a meme going around now where you get to pick 12 movies to program into 6 nights at a theoretical film festival. I was recently tagged by becca at No Smoking in the Skull Cave. It's sounds fun, so here goes.

The rules (from meme-originator Piper):

1) Choose 12 Films to be featured. They could be random selections or part of a greater theme. Whatever you want.
2) Explain why you chose the films.
3) Link back to Lazy Eye Theatre so I can have hundreds of links and I can take those links and spread them all out on the bed and then roll around in them.
4) The people selected then have to turn around and select 5 more people.

Night 1: Roller Movies
Skatetown U.S.A. and Roller Boogie





There's a very subtle plot device that unites these two films. Only the most avid film buff and astute cinema connoisseur can detect the nuanced similarities... ROLLER DISCO, BABY!

In Skatetown U.S.A. we have Scott Baio, Marcia Brady (Maureen McCormick) and Patrick Swayze competing against one another to the sounds of The Jacksons and Earth, Wind & Fire. What more do you need to know? It even stars Horshack from "Welcome Back, Kotter"! I wrote a post a month or so ago asking the Lord why this is still not on DVD.

In Roller Boogie we are treated to the unparalleled acting prowess of Linda Blair, a rich girl who's anxious to break free from her aristocratic and self-centered parents. She meets a guy from the wrong side of the tracks who teaches her to, well, roller boogie. It's no Citizen Kane, but it's a helluva lot more fun.

Night 2: Horror Spoofs
Jekyll & Hyde... Together Again and Student Bodies


Jekyll & Hyde... Together Again has to be one of the most irreverent movies I have ever seen. Basically, a mild mannered doctor inhales a powder that turns him into the ultimate disco stud complete with gold chains and long fingernail for snorting blow. It stars Cassandra Peterson (Elvira) as a busty nurse and the main star, Mark Blankfield, was a regular on the SNL ripoff "Fridays".


Student Bodies isn't one of the funniest movies ever made, but it's interesting to see a horror parody in the same vein as Scream made over a decade earlier. Plus, it has the infamous and mysterious actor known only as The Stick, who plays the disturbed janitor. Also, it was filmed at the same high school as the brilliant Rushmore.

Night 3: 1980's Teen Movies
The Wild Life and The Last American Virgin


Those expecting a typical teen comedy may get more than they bargained for with The Last American Virgin. The film is surprisingly irreverent with graphic depictions of sex (one rather depressing scene with a whore stands out) and abortion. The soundtrack is phenomenal and really puts your mind, body and soul smack dab in the early 80's.

Like Skatetown U.S.A., The Wild Life is another movie that is inexplicably unavailable on DVD. It may be a rather odd sequel to Fast Times at Ridgemont High, but it is so unbelievably 80's that it should be placed in the Smithsonian as the ultimate time capsule of the period. In fact, I feel it is my civic duty to provide you the opportunity to see the theme song for the movie sung by Bananarama so that you can begin to comprehend the sheer delirious 80's-ness of it all.



Night 4: Don't Go In the Water!
Piranha and Humanoids from the Deep

Piranha was directed by Joe Dante and stars Heather Menzies (The Sound of Music and the TV show "Logan's Run"). Here's the plot in a nutshell: the military has created an especially deadly strain of piranha for use in the Vietnam War, and it has been accidentally released into a local river. Who doesn't want to see a movie about mutant flesh eating fish? The sequel, Piranha II, was directed by James Cameron!

In Humanoids from the Deep, we don't have any of the humor that was present in Piranha, but instead are treated to a whole lotta exploitation. Roger Corman added tons of sex and violence to Barbara Peeters' ecological horror film and turned it into one of the nastiest films in the Corman library. I don't think Peeters was particularly thrilled with Corman's additions, but audiences were given quite an unexpected thrill ride with this one.


Night 5: Hippy Kids and Square Parents
Where It's At and The Party

Man, Baby Boomers thought they were just the coolest and their parents were awful squares. In Where It's At, the guy who played "The Fugitive" comes to terms with his hip young son in Vegas. The theme song is by Jeff Barry - the same guy who wrote some of the best TV theme songs ever: "One Day at a Time", "The Jeffersons", and "Family Ties".

The Party is, in my humble opinion, Peter Sellers at his best. The first two-thirds of the movie has almost no dialogue, just Sellers portraying an awkward foreigner at a Hollywood bigwig's party. The gags are physical and typical of Blake Edwards' films, but they are done to perfection by Sellers, a true comedic genius. Sadly, the last part of the movie is a horrible mess with the flower children taking over the party with a bunch of idiotic pandemonium. I suggest you just leave the theater when you see the painted hippy elephant enter the dinner party.

Night 6: Movies Inspired by Songs
Convoy and Harper Valley P.T.A.


Okay, I shouldn't have to explain to you why Convoy is cool. It's got Kris Kristofferson starring as "Rubber Duck" from the C. W. McCall song. Ali McGraw and Rubber Duck form a mile long convoy and, as the song goes, ain't nothin' gonna get in their way!


Not a big fan of Harper Valley P.T.A.? Just be glad I didn't end the Film Festival with the film You Light Up My Life. Hey, it's got Barbara Eden sockin' it to the pompous elected officials. They don't make 'em like this any more.

Hope you enjoyed reading it as I did creating it. Here's where I tag 5 folks to carry on the meme. Of course, if you don't feel like it, then by no means should you feel obligated. I simply would find it interesting to see what each one of you would put on your film festival lineup.

1. Chris at Exquisitely Bored
2. Arthur - I know this is not your cup of tea... but I thought I'd throw it out there just in case
3. Bill at the Uranium Cafe (although, I think you're probably in Tibet right now)
4. Percy - Like Arthur, I know this is not your bag, but my curiosity at a Trout Film Festival is killing me.
5. Rob, who I just discovered has a ton of great blogs. None of them deal with movies, but you're getting tagged anyway.


Chick, I already read your film festival and loved it. A Late One, I'd tag you, but I'm already pressing my luck with Percy and Arthur. I'd be real curious at a Taliesin vampire film festival, but I know Chick already tagged you.

Anyway, this has been a lot of fun, but I'm looking forward to some shorter easier posts. Good night.

5 comments:

  1. Gilligan

    I've posted a double film festival - one vampire (as Chick uggested) and one not (just to beffudle folks!)... Curious as to your reactions:

    http://taliesinttlg.blogspot.com/2008/08/12-movie-meme.html

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  2. You've certainly peaked my curiosity. I'll be checking in and will be sure to have my Netflix open in my tabbed browser ready for great suggestions for my queue!

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  3. Sorry... piqued my interest, not peaked my interest. Damn, I'm horrible at grammar.

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  4. Oh my god roller skate double feature! Out of sight! And...ugh Scott Baio...Who cares it's roller skatastic!

    And I've never seen that Jeykll & Hyde movie! Cassandra Peterson is one of my favorites, I'll have to find this!

    Cool picks man thanks for doing this!

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  5. Yeah, don't expect too much from the Jekyll and Hyde movie... it is what it is. Not as much Elvira as we'd like to see, but plenty of cocaine jokes - almost a cocaine promotional video in fact.

    It's been interesting looking at everyone's different take on the film festival meme. I really enjoyed coming up with it.

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