If you ask them, people will tell you with great confidence that there’s no way Lloyd Dobler and Diane Court actually make it after the credits roll in Say Anything… Their certainty is understandable — after all, they’ve had 25 years (the anniversary is today) to think about it. Even Diane herself seems uncertain, in that last scene; she asks Lloyd, “Nobody really thinks it will work, do they?” Lloyd confirms the fact, but then quickly adds, “You just described every great success story.” The question of their longevity usually boils down to a few basic ideas about compatibility — after all, she’s a genius and he’s (in her words) “basic,” a fast-talking, goofy Army brat who has hung his career prospects on the hybrid sport of kickboxing. “What’re you gonna talk about?” her father asks. “What do you have in common?” He asks these questions to break them up, unaware that his own dishonesty will not only bring them back together, but ensure that they do, in fact, last. … Read More
On Monday (April 14), Say Anything turns 25. Both a classic in the rom-com and teen movie categories, Cameron Crowe’s directorial debut also spawned one of the most memorable musical moments in modern film history. The movie’s protagonist, Lloyd Dobler (played by John Cusack), wins back Diane Court (Ione Skye) by standing outside her window and blasting Peter Gabriel’s “In Your Eyes” in the middle of the night. Hearing lines like, “In your eyes/ I am complete/ In your eyes/ I see the doorway to a thousand churches,” Diane melted and took Lloyd back. … Read More
The Toronto Film Festival, which came to a close recently, wasn’t just the starter pistol for We’re-Not-Saying-It-Yet Season; the long-term value of the festival may well be its place as a launching pad for first-time filmmakers. Twenty-eight films screened in its “Discovery” section, and while we won’t know for some time how many soon-to-be-immortal filmmakers were among its ranks, it’s a good excuse to peruse the history of film and pluck out the debut feature efforts of great directors who knocked us out from their first… Read More
Film fans love a good director cameo. Hitchcock made a trademark of them; viewers are regularly delighted by the sly appearances of Martin Scorsese, John Waters, Sydney Pollack, and many more (M. Night Shyamalan, not so much) in their own movies. But the real sport for true cinephiles is spotting the occasions in which chummy directors pop in for cameo appearances in the pictures of their filmmaking pals. It happens, well, all the time. Click through for our handy… Read More
‘Tis the season for adapting movies into television shows: A&E made a big splash with its Psycho prequel series Bates Motel, NBC has its Hannibal Lecter series Hannibal on deck for an April 4 debut, and Amazon has just announced its order for a pilot episode of Zombieland, based on the 2009 Jesse Eisenberg/Woody Harrelson movie. With all this activity stewing in the movie-to-TV pipeline, let’s not forget one important fact: with only a few exceptions, most TV shows based on motion pictures sink without a trace. Don’t believe us? Here are ten movie-to-TV adaptations that you probably didn’t know… Read More
It has its share of problems (contrary to what the ads are showing you, it spends most of its running time being yet another addiction melodrama), but Robert Zemeckis’ Flight does have one major draw: its opening in-flight sequences are among the most gripping, terrifying flying scenes ever put to film. And that’s not an easy boast to make — over the past several years, many filmmakers have brought the air traveler’s biggest fear to harrowing life on screen. After the jump, we’ve put together a dozen of the most harrowing flying sequences into this exclusive supercut. … Read More
So Bob Dyan’s got a new album out today, and while your film editor usually sticks to the movie beat, it’s not like Dylan is just a music figure, or even that vaguest of descriptions, a “pop culture icon.” He’s also an ever-present force in film and television, with his songs (as either writer or performer) appearing in nearly 400 movies and TV shows (according to IMDb). And while at least half of those are lazy filmmakers using the opening riff of Hendrix’s “All Along the Watchtower” cover to convey the turbulence of the sixties, that’s still quite a lot of Zimmy on film — he’s been much more free with his licensing than, say, the Beatles, whose best cinematic cues we ran down a couple of months back. In honor of Dylan’s new record (always a cause for celebration), we do the same for him below — with the same rules, i.e., no covers, no straight-up performances, but scenes where the music of Mr. Dylan is spotlighted, and in turn furthers the action and mood. Our ten favorites are after the jump. … Read More
It’s always a bit of a jolt to flip through a photo album or an old high school yearbook and to come upon a picture of someone who’s gone, a beloved relative or a classmate who left before their time — it hits you fast, and, for just a moment, it hurts again, the force of that loss compressed into a single moment of grief. It’s not the exact same feeling, but there’s something like that moment when you watch a movie shot in New York between the 1970s and 2001, and that inevitable shot of the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center appears. The towers appeared in literally hundreds of films, sometimes as background, sometimes very active in the onscreen action, but its eventual fate always makes it the foreground object when those films are viewed now. On the eve of this sad anniversary, a look at ten movies that make us miss the World Trade Center even more. … Read More
We’ve been excited about For A Good Time, Call… since its Sundance premiere, and not just because it (like fellow Sundance film Bachelorette, on demand now and in theaters next month) indicates that the post-Bridesmaids female-heavy R-rated comedy surge is actually going to happen. More than that, For A Good Time is, quite simply, a very funny and exquisitely likable sex comedy, and there’s a shortage of those any way you slice it. There’s no shortage of sex comedies, of course — since the early ‘80s heyday of Porky’s and Hardbodies and their ilk, they’ve been all but ubiquitous. But have you ever tried going back and watching those iconic titles? Good heavens. They do not hold up well.
But a select few do. After the jump, we’ve assembled ten of our all-time favorite sex comedies (which we’re defining as movies where sex is the primary preoccupation/subject matter); add your own in the comments. … Read More
Backlash is a funny thing. It’s always been present in popular culture, but it feels as though it’s become particularly prominent over the past few years, an unavoidable step in any celebrated film, band, book, or television show’s penetration into the cultural landscape: first comes critical acclaim, then financial success, then ubiquity, and then the inevitable backlash from those who object (or who have turned, perhaps because of said popularity and/or ubiquity). Sometimes, the pendulum swings back and the backlash fades — but often, the negative connotation is what sticks, and that’s what becomes the lasting perception.
This week’s 3D rerelease of Titanic got us thinking about backlash, and how often we find ourselves defending movies that were, at least in the beginning, critical and popular hits, but have since fallen out of public favor. Thus, we’ve collected ten movies that the worm turned on — but that we’re standing by, damnit, and we’ll tell you why. Check them out after the jump, and add your own in the comments. … Read More