Thursday, September 20, 2012
Doug Asks Patrick Questions About Movies
What's your favorite genre of film, and why? It's horror, isn't it. You're going to say horror. #ScaryMovieMonth
It might just be the October talking, but, yes, it's probably horror. Or maybe action. Those are two genres that can be difficult to love, because there are SO MANY MOVIES in both categories, and MORE THAN HALF of them aren't any good. Not even a little bit. But those are the only two genres in which I'll watch just about any movie (which is exactly what most of the people who make the D-grade junk that comprises much of the genres), mostly because I know it will deliver at least some of what I'm looking for. It takes a great deal of patience and dedication to wade through the stacks of hay to find just one excellent needle -- a Needle of Excellence -- but that's part of the fun, too. Not only does it make the highs feel even higher (you have, in the words of Capt. John Miller, EARNED THIS), but, like those French critics argued in the 1950s, there is something to be learned and understood about the genre by watching every entry in the genre. They all have value, even when they don't. But picking horror and action as my favorite genres is like naming pizza as your favorite food -- it's the easiest to enjoy, it's always available and you always know what you're going to get in one way or another. If you're hungry and you can grab anything to eat, you go for pizza. If I want to watch a movie and I can grab anything, I go for zombies or Steven Seagal.
Now that it's getting cooler outside, do you have a go-to autumn movie? Something that you feel like you can/should only watch in the fall?
I know you and I have talked a lot in the past (on our own, not on a website in front of a THOUSAND JUDGING EYES) about music that we will only listen to in the fall (which I don't really even do anymore, because I've given up on music), but the same doesn't really hold true for movies. Obviously, there is ALL OF OCTOBER (#ScaryMovieMonth) in which I watch exclusively horror movies, but beyond that I can't think of too many movies that I specifically seek out once the leaves change. Good Will Hunting is kind of a fall movie for me, but it's not like I watch it every year (I don't like them apples). For some reason, I don't think I would watch Girl, Interrupted in any season but fall, but I also don't think I would watch Girl, Interrupted in any season (that movie is fine, but I'm good). These are the months that are typically reserved for "good" movies in theaters -- the awards bait, the auteur-driven indies, the movies for grownups, so maybe I watch those kinds of movies? Or maybe I get enough of those at the theater and spend my time at home watching Steven Seagal movies. I don't know.
What I'm saying is that the answer is Meet Joe Black.
Best disaster movie -- go!
This is a genre in which I'm pretty deficient, because a) the disaster movie boom of the '70s was before my time and b) I've never been interested in those movies enough to go back and seek them out. I've never seen Earthquake. I've never seen The Towering Inferno. I haven't even seen The Poseidon Adventure (or Poseidon, for that matter). I also mostly skipped out on the mid-'90s resurgence of the disaster movie, so I never went to see Dante's Peak or Volcano or Deep Impact (though I just put then latter into my Netflix queue). Many of the disaster movies I actually have seen are directed by Roland Emmerich -- The Day After Tomorrow, 2012 (#nomorepullups) and Independence Day. I guess that last one would be my favorite almost by default, and I wonder if that's because it dresses up the usual disaster movie trappings with aliens and spaceships and lasers and Jeff Goldblum.
I'm considering purging some of my older, rarely watched DVDs. How do you decide if a movie's worth keeping, even if you haven't played it in years?
I have a really hard time parting with DVDs, because I'm always positive I'll be in the mood to watch a movie again AT SOME POINT. As much as I think I'll never want to see A Perfect Murder again, I can't bring myself to part with it because I know my own madness and I know the way my mind works, and one of these days I'm going to get on some big Andrew Davis kick (no doubt brought on by my first viewing of Steal Big, Steal Little. Or my tenth viewing of Chain Reaction.) and I'll be kicking myself for having gotten rid of it. And for what? $1.50? Half an inch of shelf space? No thank you. You stay right here with me, A Perfect Murder. At the same time, I've tried to be much more careful about what I actually buy (these days, that means hardly anything at all) so that I'm not put in that position. The only stuff that comes into the house is either movies that I know we love and will watch regularly for years (at least until the Snow White and the Huntsman chip is implanted into my brain) or is something I have to review.
Also, what are you getting rid of? Anything I might want? I understand you recently regained possession of a certain copy of Harvard Man...
Say something (ANYTHING) nice about Paul W.S. Anderson.