Last week I came up with the first in a series of hypothetical 24 movie marathons I'll be planning throughout the month. I was happy with the lineup and everybody else was cool about it, too. That was all the encouragement I needed to plan a second possible marathon, this time built around the theme of "School Days." (It was suggested by Dan Snyder. Thanks for the idea, Dan!) Planning 24 hours of movies about high school or college presented new challenges, but ones which I attempted to meet head on and address creatively.
There were enough other movies fitting the theme I wanted to include that I probably could have programmed a full 48 hours of "school" movies. Sacrifices had to be made. Hope you all dig what I came up with.
11: 30 a.m. Rock 'n' Roll High School (1979, dir. Allan Arkush)
1:30 p.m. Rebel Without a Cause (1955, dir. Nicholas Ray)
3:30 p.m. Brick (2006, dir. Rian Johnson)
5:30 p.m. Wonder Boys (2000, dir. Curtis Hanson)
The American President in the first fake marathon lineup I made. Almost makes me want to start an unofficial rule that this timeslot belongs to Michael Douglas, but that would mean I'm eventually watching A Perfect Murder or something and life is too short. But Wonder Boys works well because it offers yet another change of pace; it's a comedy, but the rhythms are different. A great character piece about a college professor paralyzed by his inability to follow up a very successful novel, the film is funny and smart and well-observed about academia and features great performances by Douglas (who maybe should have won the Oscar for this), Tobey Maguire, Robert Downey Jr., Frances McDormand and even Katie Holmes. It's a great hangout movie.
7:30 p.m. National Lampoon's Animal House (1978, dir. John Landis)
9:30 p.m. Grosse Pointe Blank (1997, dir. George Armitage)
11:30 p.m. Detention (2011, dir. Joseph Kahn)
1 a.m. Phenomena (aka Creepers) (1985, dir. Dario Argento)
3 a.m. Evilspeak (1981, dir. Eric Weston)
5 a.m. Switchblade Sisters (1975, dir. Jack Hill)
6:30 a.m. Dangerously Close (1986, dir. Albert Pyun)
8 a.m. The Breakfast Club (1985, dir. John Hughes)
In truth, though, the main reason I want to close with this one is because I'm reverse engineering the end of The Breakfast Club to coincide with the end of the marathon. After 12 movies and 24 hours, thinking about Brian Johnson reading his letter to the dean, John Bender pumping his fist into the air and "Don't You Forget About Me" swelling on the soundtrack is enough to make me want to cry. Like me, these characters have been stuck in a school all day. Like me, they're finally free. This is the way to end it.
Thanks again to Dan Snyder and to everyone suggesting themes. More marathons to come!