Friday, November 7, 2014

Growing Up Nerdy

by Adam Thas and Mike Pomaro
The Nerdy boys will keep you up all night.

Dear Growing Up Nerdy,

For the first time I attended one of those 24-hour film festivals. Once I got past the sleep deprivation and sleep debt, it was a pretty fun time. I wanted to know what a 24-hour film festival would look like if you programmed your own?

-Tiffany in Pittsburg

Mike: Our fearless leader Patrick has stayed up for 24 straight hours watching movies not once, but TWICE, over the past few weeks. On a related note, it turns out Patrick is an android. That explains how someone can deprive themselves of so much sleep. It also explains why Patrick is such a fine lieutenant commander of the Starship Enterprise. Anyway, kind reader, I am sadly not an android, therefore I crave sleep too much to subject myself to 24 straight hours of movies. I will answer the question, however, because I am nothing if not a team player. Also, Patrick has tremendous android-strength and can break me in half if I refuse.
12:00 pm La Dolce Vita (1960; dir. Federico Fellini)

Let’s get the pretentiousness out of the way early. I’ve only recently come to appreciate Fellini and I just purchased the Criterion Blu-ray of La Dolce Vita, a movie I have not seen to date, so I’d be excited to kick off my nightmarish 24 hours this way. It’s just under three hours long, so better now than three movies from now when I’m already burnt out.
3:10 pm Raising Arizona (1987; dir. Joel and Ethan Coen)

Raising Arizona is a movie I never grow tired of. It’s so smart, so funny and endlessly watchable. Coming off of a classic art house Italian film, there’s no better way to shift gears than to follow up La Dolce Vita than with the story of a kidnapped boy wearing jammies with Yodas an’ shit on them.
4:55 pm Rope (1948; dir. Alfred Hitchcock)

I have a strange fascination with Rope. While not considered one of Hitchcock’s finest films, like most movies that will appear on this list, it’s a lot of fun and one I revisit a lot. Also, Jimmy Stewart.
6:40 pm Kill Bill Vol. 1 (2003; dir. Quentin Tarantino)

It’s that time of the night when I want a little action, so no better way to serve that up than to program Kill Bill Vol. 1, one of my favorite action movies of all time.
8:45 pm Kill Bill Vol. 2 (2004; dir: Quentin Tarantino)

If I’m going to watch Kill Bill Vol. 1, I need to watch Kill Bill Vol. 2 immediately afterward. Because I'm a crazy person.
11:15 pm Dazed and Confused (1993; dir. Richard Linklater)

Just writing this column is making me sleepy. This is when I’ll start getting crabby and wanting to go to bed, so it’s a great time to program Dazed and Confused. No matter what time of day it is, if I’m flipping through the channels and I come across Dazed and Confused, I have to put it on. This movie makes me so happy and I’m confident I can stay awake throughout.
1:05 am Goodfellas (1990; dir. Martin Scorsese)

I’m really tired, guys. Why am I doing this? Now I’ll start programming movies that I know like the back of my hand just in case I doze off, WHICH I WILL NOT DO!! Goodfellas is my all-time favorite movie and a film that moves at such a fast clip, it won’t give me the opportunity to close my eyes.
3:50 am Revenge of the Nerds (1984; dir. Jeff Kanew)

Next to Goodfellas, there is no film that I know as well as Revenge of the Nerds. My introduction to movie boobs, Revenge of the Nerds holds a special place in my heart. Also, I still think it’s really funny.
5:30 am The Thing (1982; dir. John Carpenter)

I now have my second wind and it’s time for some John Carpenter. While Halloween is my favorite of his films, I recognize that The Thing is his masterpiece and another horror movie that I can watch any time of year.
7:30 am Singin’ in the Rain (1952; dir. Stanley Donen and Gene Kelly)

I had a film teacher that described Singin’ in the Rain as “The musical for people that hate musicals.” I wouldn’t say that I hate musicals, but I don’t love them either. I love Singin’ in the Rain.
9:30 am Cloud Atlas (2012; dir. Tom Tykwer, Andy Wachowski and Lana Wachowski)

There’s no better way than to close out these past 24 hours than with Cloud Atlas, one of my all-time favorite films and a movie that ends on a note that reminds me why I love movies so much. And after 24 straight hours of this, I may need that reminder.

Adam: Well, it appears that Mike stole several movies from what was going to be my film festival, including Cloud Atlas (have I mentioned how much I love that movie?). I need to re-examine my film festival; I could do an “All Adam” film festival, but I’m pretty sure that would end up being porn. So I’m going to put together a different type of film festival called “Adam’s Nerdtastic Film Festival With Nothing All Pretentious Like Fellini. Seriously, Who Puts Fellini in a Film Festival?”
12:00 pm The Empire Strikes Back (1980; dir. Irvin Kershner)

You need to have at least one Star Wars movie in a Nerd film festival. While whether or not this is the best one is up for debate, this one is my favorite.
2:45 pm Flash Gordon (1980; dir. Mike Hodges)

I’d put this one after Empire Strikes Back because of the contrast in special effects. I can’t tell if the shitty special effects in Flash Gordon were a conscious choice or if it was just that no one had watched Star Wars yet.
4:45 pm A Boy and His Dog (1975; dir. LQ Jones)

I really love this movie because it predates Mad Max with the “Post-Apocalyptic Desert” theme. It is a very interesting take on the apocalypse from the eyes of a horny teenager.
6:15 pm Spaceballs (1987; dir. Mel Brooks)

A Boy and His Dog is a pretty heavy movie, so after that movie brings us down, we’re definitely going to need something to pick us back up. It was a tough choice between this and Ice Pirates, but I decided this was my go-to simply because it’s funnier.
8:00 pm The Rocketeer (1991; dir. Joe Johnston)

I remember when this movie first came out that I was so bummed because the younger version of me was very disappointed that it wasn’t two hours of a guy flying around with a jetpack. As I got older, I realized how much I really love this movie.
10:00 pm Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers (2002; dir. Peter Jackson)

Has it really been 12 years? Damn, I’m old. This is probably my favorite out of all of the LOTR movies. The contrasting battles at the end with Helm’s Deep and the Ents is so awesome. I love this movie and am always looking for reasons to watch it.
1:00 am Lilo & Stitch (2002; dir Dean DeBlois & Chris Sanders)

Well, after spending a ton of time on LOTR, we need to take a deep breath and watch a short movie. I get into more arguments with people about this movie; there are surprisingly a lot of people who hate it. This may be my favorite Disney movie (not counting Pixar) and I genuinely find it hysterical. Not to mention it’s co-directed by Chris Sanders, of whom I’m a pretty big fan.
2:30 am The Avengers (2012; dir. Joss Whedon)

With the huge number of superhero movies coming out, it is fitting that we watch the biggest superhero event of the 21st century. 13-year old me and 35-year old me smile when I think about this movie and that it actually got made.
5:15 am Serenity (2005; dir. Joss Whedon)

I’m a fan of Firefly, and as a continuation of the series I’m less of a fan of this than when I look at it as its own movie. As an individual movie I love how the story gives you a sense of something a lot bigger, and has a lot of things to say while still telling a kick ass story.
7:15 am Mystery Science Theater 3000: Space Mutiny (1997)

Oh look at you, getting all technical that MST3K isn’t technically a “movie” but a TV show. Well, Space Mutiny is a movie, and it’s my damn festival so I prefer to watch it with my pals from the Satellite of Love. This is my favorite, hands down, of all the MST3K’s.
6:50 am Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country (1991; dir. Nicholas Meyer)

I know, and yes I agree that Wrath of Kahn is one of the greatest sci-fi movies of all time, but I’ve also seen it a billion times. Only recently have I revisited the Trek movies, and VI is really great. It’s very interesting how Next Generation was already in existence and Undiscovered Country starts to really frame up the universe that Star Trek exists in.
8:50 am Aliens (Director's Cut) (1986; dir. James Cameron)

This might be one of my favorite movies of all time, so we’re finishing off with a bang. I can watch this movie a thousand times and never get sick of it.

Well, that was exhausting and I didn’t actually watch all those movies. How does Patrick do this?


  1. I don't think I could ever make it through a 24 hour film festival! I do however want to re-watch and try ou some of these now though. I am totally with you Adam on Lilo and Stitch. I really love it. I think it's very charming and funny but also quite earnest in its themes of family.

    1. Right! Lilo & stitch hooked me with that opening chase scene and just never let up! I love that movie.

  2. Both absolutely excellent line-ups, full stop.
    However, if I'm being honest, I have to give the edge to Mike's (Adam's Flash Gordon pick notwithstanding) because he put 2 of my Top 5 movies of all time in there: The Thing and Cloud Atlas.
    Fine job, gentlemen. I'd let you guys program my film festival any day.

    1. For the record, I was going to put the thing in my list!!!

  3. Both nice line ups, but I just have to say I did not see Space Mutiny coming. A favorite MST3K of mine as well; it has been soooooo long since I have seen it though. I need to revisit it in the not too distant future.

    1. Yeah, mst3k has a tendency to slow the jokes down sometimes during a movie but in Space Mutiny it never stops. I laughed so much at that one!

  4. It is a testament to all F-heads that this thread didn't just degenerate into fake bonehead names for Reb Brown's character in Space Mutiny.

    That being said...Thunk Chiselneck.

  5. I tried to watch a lot of movies for SMM but I peaked at 7 in one day. 13 ish is a killer. I just cant physically do it. And I needed breaks in between movies. My eyes could not handle 24 hrs straight. They would just turn off. I want to do it sometime too. Coffee and redbull and stay awake pills maybe

    Ps. Great artwork again Adam