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Thread: Guilty Pleasures Again

  1. #1
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    Guilty Pleasures Again

    Okay... it's time to admit it... you're closet fan of __________:

    (1) What are the movies you're most ashamed to say you love?

    (2) Who are the performers you're most ashamed to admit you like?
    http://anduril.ca/movies/

    There's a spirituality in films, even if it's not one which can supplant faith
    Martin Scorsese

  2. #2
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    William Shatner makes me smile....
    "Set the controls for the heart of the Sun" - Pink Floyd

  3. #3
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    I really like Titanic, The Usual Suspects, Dead Again, Blood Simple, Lynne's Lolita, Twin Peaks:Fire Walk With Me...

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    Meatballs, Footloose, Real Genius, Lucas, Blue Crush...

  5. #5
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    1980's Chevy Chase movies:

    Caddyshack
    National Lampoon's Vacation
    Fletch
    Fletch Lives

  6. #6
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    I also secretly watch *Shhhh!* (the anna nicole smith show) and I have a thing for Kelly Osbourne
    "Set the controls for the heart of the Sun" - Pink Floyd

  7. #7
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    Is that before or after "Trimspa" (baby)!

    "This is important... it means something..."
    Richard Dreyfus, "Close Encounters"

  8. #8
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    Anna is wonderful fat or thin (don't ask me why-I can't explain it).

    She's crude, thick as a brick, gained so much weight that you wouldn't know she was a Playmate of the Year and an absolute embarassment.

    Why am I drawn to her like a moth to a flame?
    God help me...
    "Set the controls for the heart of the Sun" - Pink Floyd

  9. #9
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    Shame, shame...

    Okay, I guess it's time to let the cat out of the bag.

    I thought Tom Green's Freddy Got Fingered was a funny movie.

  10. #10
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    What a find!

    I finally rented Brian DePalma's Phantom of the Paradise.
    It's now one of my fave guilty pleasure films.

    You can tell there's a heavy Rocky Horror influence. The main difference is the bedrock of songs by Paul Williams as opposed to Richard O'Brien. Both have songwriting skill and both are grotesque to look at.
    Paul Williams is a cross between Peter Noone, Davy Jones and the mayor of Munchkinland. Why DePalma made him a star in this movie is a mystery. I love his songs, but he's not easy on the eyes.

    The story is interesting: a geeky songwriter named Winslow Leach has written a long cantata on the Faust legend that Paul Williams wants to use to open his new "rock palace": The Paradise.

    Problem is Winslow says he's the only one who can sing it.
    Paul ("SWAN" as he's called in the movie) sees it as a vehicle for his band The Juicy Fruits. The Juicy Fruits are a Sha-na-na type of group who "gave birth to the nostalgia wave of the 70's".

    Long story short, Winslow is swindled into signing a contract with the shady Swan, who auditions girls to sing backup vocals, hires a flaming gay showman named BEEF, and turns the Faust cantata into a costume-change extravaganza for his group The Juicy Fruits.

    Sound hilarious? It is. It's brilliant.
    Winslow ends up being framed and going to jail (Sing Sing!) for packing "smack, Jack!". He breaks out, crashes the Death records office and pressing plant (getting his face pressed in the process- disfiguring him) and he staggers back to Swan's "Swanage" where he finds a costume and mask to hide his identity.

    Swan proceeds to exploit Winslow's songs by putting on a concert that is one of the weirdest you'll ever see: check out the German Expressionism backdrop!
    As "The Phantom", Winslow lurks in the catwalks of the Paradise,
    where he kills Beef with a neon thunderbolt, and prepares to kill Swan.

    The film has a lot of bird imagery: Death Records' logo is a dead finch, "Swan" is the owner, "Phoenix" is his so-called muse, scantily-clad women dressed up in crow outfits prance about towards the end, and even The Phantom's mask is bird-like.

    I haven't mentioned the best thing about the film: Jessica Harper.
    She sings like an angel and looks like one- I understand your infatuation oscar! She's got that Oil-of-Olay look, a sweet innocence and a velvet voice. Her version of "Special To Me" at the auditions was rewound about 15 times....




    Late Edit: sorry, I just found out the film was released in 1974, so the Rocky Horror remark is null and void. I guess this film was an influence on Sharman.
    Last edited by Johann; 04-02-2004 at 04:35 PM.
    "Set the controls for the heart of the Sun" - Pink Floyd

  11. #11
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    anduril!

    You started this thread and haven't added a damn thing.
    What are your guilty pleasures?
    "Set the controls for the heart of the Sun" - Pink Floyd

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    STACY COCHRAN'S "BOYS" (1996)

    [Written for IMDb after watching the film for the third or fourth time.]

    Look, you don't watch every movie because it's a good movie. "Boys" – the title has wandered in from some gay porno flick shopping list -- is for all intents and purposes a bad movie and even nice film critics have been mean to it. But if this is a failure, this is not your average failure. Oh, no. It has moments, and an interesting, borderline cultish, cast. Skeet Ulrich is almost forgotten, but in his fleeting appearances he has a dysfunctional neediness, luminous sex appeal, a scary attraction – you see that also in "As Good As It Gets," where he robs and beats up Greg Kinnear. There's something dangerous – and expendable – about Skeet. We may think of John C. Reilly in PT Anderson's "Magnolia," and see that same homely touching appeal on idle here in his Maryland State Police role. This was probably the only time the mercurial, offbeat Lucas Haas was conventionally cute enough to match up with a pretty -- at times quite beautiful -- girl like Winona. And her dazed, out-of-it quality – she's clearly a young lady who makes nothing but wrong choices in men -- contributes to the curiously touching moments the two have in the amusement park when thehigh school boy briefly but intensely falls for the 25-year-old and proposes marriage and eternal loyalty and they kiss sweetly and the rest of the world disappears. That's the high point. Now, there's nothing more tedious than the boys in the opening segment nattering at each other, threatening to rat on each other, but curious to get in on any trouble that's going to come down—but the way they behave and look in this movie is completely natural and believable. Like most real schoolboys they're likely to bore each other to death before they'll ever enter into some sort of Lord of the Flies adventure. Chris Cooper – what is he doing here? He's playing an archetypal father, the one we don't see in "Dead Poets Society," the flipside of his twisted military dad in American Beauty. James LeGros and Catherine Keener complete the surprising cast. Using a classic college campus – St. Johns, Annapolis -- for a fancy prep school works and heightens the posh effect. The movie doesn't altogether work otherwise. It's energy is sluggish; it has no drive.. But you come back to it looking for something that didn't come together, but might have, because some choice ingredients were there. And won't come this way again.. Check out Haas in "Johns", dated the same year, with David Arquette for another good offbeat role, a wilder, quirkier one that also seems to fit him like a soft old glove. He's never had the role he deserves, but what an actor. James Salter, whose story this is based on, is a very fine writer. The music isn't inappropriate; it's just obtrusively loud, the way schoolboys would play it, if they weren't being properly supervised.

    [Possibly straight to video. Certainly watched it only as a video. But hey, you can get it from Deep Discount DVD on DVD for $6.45, shipping free!]

  13. #13
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    Good idea to "refresh" this thread. I find the topic intriguing. Anduril's original post asks: Which are "the movies you're ashamed to say you love?" and the thread's title includes the word "guilty". Shame and guilt are not emotional states I experience in relation to movies, certainly not movies I "love". So I listed a few movies I like a lot that went under-appreciated in certain quarters. Maybe I have an inflated regard for my own predilections and judgement, but don't we all? I don't think I've ever seen a movie for the "third or fourth time" that I think "is for all intents and purposes a bad movie". So, I'm not sure what movies to bring up here even though I think this is an interesting thread that can ellicit interesting responses. Boys was certainly poorly received by everyone, with few exceptions including Jonathan Rosenbaum, who seems to like it for similar reasons that Chris does.

    I love Michael Cimino's Heaven's Gate, one of the most beautiful westerns ever made. It was widely held by European critics as a masterpiece and it did well with audiences there. The release was preceded by reams of negative publicity payed by United Artists executives scapegoating and blaming Cimino for the demise of a studio that was already dead. This doesn't deny the fact that Cimino himself caused the budget to balloon way beyond what's reasonable. But watch the film and you can see where the money went: thousands of extras in exact period costumes, perfect replicas of midwestern towns circa 1890, attention to the most minute historical details, amazing art direction, etc. Heaven's Gate was released in NYC, Vincent Camby hated it and Kael didn't review it. Panicked UA execs ordered the film cut from 219 to 150 minutes, and released the abbreviated cut at a relatively low number of theatres without much in the way of marketing and publicity. Westerns were not popular anymore, to begin with, and the film's deliberate pace and somber outlook did not sit well with popcorn munchers. Of course, even in America, the film has its defenders but overall its bad reputation lingers. Now, that's a shame.

    I like two independent "gay-interest" films that came out without much fanfare over the past few years. Both priviledge character development over plot, and both have probably been under-rated partly because of subject matter.
    Harry + Max is the fourth film by writer/director Christopher Munch. It concerns the relationship between two brothers, ages 16 and 23, who are in the music business. I cannot argue that Harry + Max is nearly as wonderful as Munch's three previous films (The Hours and the Times, Color of a Brisk and Leaping Day and The Sleepy Time Gal). It is not. But it's worth seeing. I think that the brothers' fluid state of sexual orientation and the incestuous aspect of their relationship is what has turned off some critics, more so than formal flaws.

    By Hook or by Crook has won a ton of awards at Gay and Lesbian festivals. But it seems to me that it's been underappreciated by mainstream critics. It's kind of like a butch-lesbian Midnight Cowboy; a collaboration between best buddies Harriet "Harry" Dodge, a theatre actress, and Silas Howard, a musician. They are complete novices when it comes to filmmaking but they are talented and fearlessly experimental. The film is grounded in the most exquisitely detailed and believable characterizations as queer-looking, boyish girls who establish a deep but platonic friendship when they meet in San Francisco.

  14. #14
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    I'm glad I revived this thread too and I am wondering if by going through my videotape library I can come up with some more entries.

    Obviously a Guilty Pleasure is primarily a movie you know isn't good, but still take pleasure in and keep coming back to, possibly for some lurid reasons you can't possibly justify. I don't see any of that in your latest entry, because you argue for the excellence of the films you mention. But you have so many films on your mind I guess you need some new category.

    Maybe Heaven's Gate would be more in the category of spectacular failures. There are those, especially in Hollywood. I personally stayed away from this movie because I despised The Deer Hunter. This is a powerful film with a host of great actors who at that time were quite young and just beginning to show what they could do. But it was despicable to falsify the Vietnam experience by focusing on a lurid event that never occured. Vietnam veterans wrote letters to the editor to protest and then I realized that, though I had not been in Vietnam, I was not alone in being offended and outraged. So in my mind, Cimino is a director of very questionable taste and morals. I think his grandiosity is what increases my dislike of him. Obviously a tireless film student like yourself, Oscar, would have to see Days of Heaven, but given all the negative reports and my strong dislike for his most notable film (which I would agree any student of American films of the Vietnam era would be forced to watch) I felt perfectly justified in avoiding Days of Heaven. I don't think Cimino has done anything even worth seeing since so required viewings of Ciminio opuses would end with Deer Hunter and Days of Heaven. On the other hand, I could never by the wildest stretch of the imagination argue that anyone needs to watch Stacy Cochran's Boys. Your lesbian films don't sound like Guilty Pleasures either, just special interest films, not guilty pleasures unless you compulsively watch them over and over.

  15. #15
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    Originally posted by Chris Knipp
    a Guilty Pleasure is primarily a movie you know isn't good, but still take pleasure in and keep coming back to, possibly for some lurid reasons you can't possibly justify.

    Makes sense. I probably don't have guilty pleasures then. I haven't been able to come up with a movie I know is bad that I "keep coming back to".

    I don't see any of that in your latest entry, because you argue for the excellence of the films you mention. But you have so many films on your mind I guess you need some new category.

    Perhaps my choices fit more under the category "under-rated in my opinion" then. I want to clarify that I don't think Harry + Max and By Hook or By Crook are excellent or very good. I think they're definitely worth watching whereas a lot of critics, especially straights like me, didn't think so.

    Maybe Heaven's Gate would be more in the category of spectacular failures. I personally stayed away from this movie because I despised The Deer Hunter.

    I didn't let my opinion of The Deer Hunter make my mind up about Cimino as a person or about Heaven's Gate. The latter turned out to be a fantastic epic coming from a polar political sensibility than its predecessor. Atkinson wrote a potent (but not fawning) review the last time the film was shown in NYC: Heaven's Gate

    Your lesbian films don't sound like Guilty Pleasures either, just special interest films, not guilty pleasures unless you compulsively watch them over and over.

    Harry + Max are brothers and the only female character is heterosexual (played quite well by Rain Phoenix). By Hook or by Crook is a lesbian film but the writer/directors/actors would prefer we call it "butch". IMdb voters and most critics didn't like them (although the "butch movie" won a ton of awards at G&L fests, even at the one in Paris).

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