Thursday, September 26, 2013

Jason takes a Midnites for Maniacs theatre crawl and goes Back to Skool

Catching up on my blogging, almost a week late.

Anyway, Midnites 4 Maniacs has introduced a new wrinkle, the "Theatre Crawl"--seeing multiple movies in multiple theatres (like a bar crawl, but with movies instead of drinking...and with drinking if you stop in any of the many convenience stores and smuggle in some alcohol.)

Anyway, last Friday was Back to Skool night, and we started at the Castro.

CAN'T HARDLY WAIT (1998): A movie that looked uninteresting to me when it came out (and I had just graduated college.) But now from my vantage point 15 years later...I understand why it didn't interest me. I was not a social person in high school. Nor did I want to be. The idea of going to an end-of-school party (even with a ridiculous revenge plot) just wouldn't appeal to me. I came out of my shell somewhat in college, but I don't think I've really become "me" until the last few years, and I'm probably still a work in progress who likes to be alone quite a lot of the time.

But wait, this is supposed to be a review of the movie, not a review of me. Yeah, it's actually pretty funny, for what it is. And you get to see a young Seth Green being absolutely ridiculous. Mostly I liked the irony in the title: CAN'T HARDLY WAIT is about a bunch of young people who waited until the last possible minute to do what they've been dreaming about for years. The thing is, most everyone who likes this movie likes it because there's a character they relate to. They can all say, "I was (or am) just like that character who ______!" But me...the closest I can say is "I was just like the character who never appeared on screen because he didn't give a crap about the party (no one told him about it anyway) and he stayed home and read a book." Consider me Sir Not-Appearing-in-This-Film.

RULES OF ATTRACTION (2002): Now this was a revelation. Again, I didn't pay much attention when it came out. All I remember was it starred teen heartthrob James Van Der Beek at the height of his "Dawson's Creek" fame, and that one version of the poster stirred up some controversy (note: I want that poster now!)

Van Der Beek did not make this movie to capitalize on his pretty-boy fame, he made it to subvert it and not get typecast as Dawson. And he's an extremely unlikable character--drinking, doing drugs, dealing drugs, screwing, screwing over his friends, etc. Not that anyone else is that sympathetic, either. Nor are the filmmakers or anyone involved at all sympathetic. Perhaps the biggest trolling insult you could give director Roger Avary is to say, "I really, really enjoyed RULES OF ATTRACTION." This is not a movie to be enjoyed. It's a movie to appreciate, to marvel at, even to be blown away by; but if you enjoy it you're one sick freak. You open with a rape scene. You go back in time. You meet your gaggle of shallow, privileged college students. The fuck. They fuck around. They try to fall in love. They fail. They try to make money to pay off their drug dealer. They fail. There's a suicide so beautifully, obsessively, fetishistic-ally shot that you forget for a minute she's hardly a character in the movie. And now you're about halfway through. No more, too many spoilers already. And so much it's hard to keep it all in my head. I need to watch it again. I really, really enjoyed it.

Also, how about a double feature of RULES OF ATTRACTION and GLITTERATI (the feature-length version of the rapid-edit "European trip" sequence in the movie)...if it ever gets released? (Please, please, please!)


Then we walked down to the Roxie for the midnight screening of...

TERRORVISION (1986): What...the...fuck? A satellite dish (remember those, when people had gigantic satellite dishes to get all this TV without paying monthly bills for cable service?) accidentally pulls an alien creature into our world. Or...into whatever weird world of swingers this takes place in. Cheesy special effects, ridiculous plot, survivalist grandpa, the kid no one believes, and a late-night TV horror hostess with cleavage that doesn't end. Oh yeah, and  Beef from PHANTOM OF THE PARADISE and Laslo from REAL GENIUS (or, if you prefer, Gerrit Graham and John Gries.) Then it gets weird.

Total Running Time: 293 minutes
My Total Minutes: 337,636
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