Monday, November 22, 2010

Jason goes to bad movie night and watches FIRESTARTER

And I admit I needed a little firewater to get me through it.

This is a story about how anyone who messes around with Drew Barrymore (I'm looking at you, super-creepy George C. Scott) gets punished with an intense burning sensation.

Yeah, I know Drew was only 9 years old at the time, and that's creepy, but you know she was already a coked-up whore back then. I applaud how well she's turned herself around.

Running Time: 114 minutes (but it felt a lot longer)
My Total Minutes: 216,418

Jason goes to the Niles Film Museum for comedy shorts night--Nov 20, 2010

Man, that place was packed! I thought the rain storm would keep a few people away, but I'm lucky I got there early. And, of course, the movies delivered (as did Greg Pane on the piano)

THE VAGABOND (1916): Charlie Chaplin in his Tramp character helps a poor, friendless girl (Niles favorite Edna Purviance) who has been stolen by gypsies. He fights off her captors, washes her face (in the most hilarious scene), and is ready to settle down with her. But a rival enters the picture, a painter who makes her famous.

NEVER WEAKEN (1921): Harold Lloyd does his best to help his girlfriend and her boss's struggling osteopathy business. And he succeeds, but he also overhears her talking with a man about marrying her. Distraught, he decides to end it all, but doesn't have the guts. And then dizzying high-rise girder acrobatic hijinx ensue. And those scenes always get to me. Hilarious, and truly tense and exciting.

Then a brief intermission

HIGH RISE (1921): Buster Keaton didn't actually like this film, but his friend and mentor Rosco "Fatty" Arbuckle loved it. Faking his way through a sharpshooting job in an amusement park, he gets inducted into the Blinking Buzzards, and is given the job of assassinating a businessman who's late on a payment. He's also hired by the very same businessman as a bodyguard. And with the house tricked out with all sorts of secret passages and trapdoors (for his safety), you know Keaton's trademark acrobatic wackiness will ensue.

SUGAR DADDIES (1927): And finally, The Boys, Laurel and Hardy. This was just before they were really a comedy team, they just happened to be appearing in a lot of the same Hal Roach movies, but Roach hadn't figured out to team them up yet. Their longtime foil/co-star Jim Finlayson gets equal billing, and stars as a rich tycoon who wakes up after a bender and is informed by his butler (Hardy) that he was married last night. Not only does he not want that, but it's really all a scam by his "wife" and her cohorts to steal his money. So he calls his lawyer (Laurel) to fix it. But nothing will be fixed before Finlayson ends up running through an amusement park with Laurel on his back, dressed up as a very tall woman. You know, to be inconspicuous. Hilarious. I think Mr. Roach should team these guys up more often!

Total Running Time: 94 minutes
My Total Minutes: 216,304


At a special sneak preview showcasing the San Francisco Landmark Theatres' new calendar. Lots of cool stuff coming up, but last Thursday was all about this twisted Christmas flick from Finland. The locals are pissed about the crazy American corporation that is drilling for archaeological relics in their mountain. But if they thought it was bad that they were disturbing the wolves and ruining the reindeer hunt (oh yeah, the heroes are reindeer hunters), just wait until they unearth the most amazing Christmas legend ever. You see, the Santa Claus created by Coca-Cola wasn't the real one. The real one was a demon who wasn't so interested in giving children presents, he was more interested in punishing naughty children. And now he's back. Pretty awesome, although I will say I wanted a bit more of a reveal at the end. Although to say anything more would be too much of a spoiler.

Running Time: 80 minutes
My Total Minutes: 216,210

Saturday, November 20, 2010


I've now finished the movie version of Stieg Larsson's "Millenium" trilogy, just as I've started reading the first one. This one picks up right where THE GIRL WHO PLAYED WITH FIRE left off. Lisbeth is in the hospital and awaiting trial for three murders just as soon as she's well enough. This time Mikael Blomkvist is working to save her. There's less physical action in this movie, so it's a tribute to the full, rich characters Larsson created (and to Noomi Rapace's performance) that a story that takes place mostly in her mind and her motivations is still gripping. In order to win her trial, she has to let go and open up about her traumatic past. My favorite scene is simply her totally punked-up appearance in court. Not just because she looks bad-ass, but because of the psychological implications--she's putting on a form of armor so that she can be vulnerable in public. Just brilliant.

Running Time: 147 minutes
My Total Minutes: 216,130

Monday, November 15, 2010

Jason goes to the Niles Film Museum for BLOCK-HEADS and MALICE IN THE PALACE

The monthly Afternoon with the Boys was part of our Vernon Dent weekend, celebrating the release of Bill Cassara's new book VERNON DENT: STOOGE HEAVY.

First up, MALICE IN THE PALACE (1949), one of my favorite stooge flicks, and probably my favorite Shemp. Vernon Dent plays "Hassan Ben Sober" in this goofy caper where the stooges run a restaurant and come across a plot to steal Rootin Tootin's diamond. A bit of trivia, Curly (who was recovering from a stroke) was supposed to play the cook, making this one of the very few 3 Stooges movies with 4 stooges (the only one is HOLD THAT LION, where Curly plays an uncredited sleeping passenger on a train and does his trademark snoozing noises). There was even production material made advertising it but ultimately he was too weak to stay in the film, so Larry filled in as the cook, and did a fine job. Get it? Larry...did a Fine job? Ha! I'm hilarious!

Then, after a brief intermission, the feature was BLOCK-HEADS (1938): Stan is the kind of loyal but not-too-bright WWI soldier that when he's told to guard the trench while everyone else attacks, he does just that until he's relieved. 30 years later, he shoots down an aviator that he mistakes for a German, and he learns the war is over. His old war pal Ollie sees his picture in the paper and goes to visit him. Ollie is now happily married, by which I mean he's totally whipped and lives in fear of his wife. Stan causes all sorts of problems, culminating in blowing up the kitchen and getting into a little trouble with the neighbor's wife, Mrs. Gilbert (in a setup that's copied from their earlier WE FAW DOWN (1928)). Very funny.

Total Running Time: 73 minutes
My Total Minutes: 215,983

Jason watches DUE DATE

And it's just...not...very...good. No chemistry between the stars, I never really cared about either of them. There was one drug scene that was visually engaging, but that's about the only part of the movie that's at all memorable. It not only slows down my process of becoming a Zach Galifianakis fan, it also somewhat diminished my fandom of Robert Downey, Jr.

Running Time: 100 minutes
My Total Minutes: 215,910

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Jason goes to the Bal Theatre for a Buster Keaton double feature

This was my first time at the Bal Theatre in San Leandro, and I love finding new theaters. And this, of course, was a great way to get acquainted with this beautiful old theater.

I won't say much about these movies, they're the Buster Keaton classics THE GENERAL (the epic about the Civil War where Keaton plays a Southern engineer who saves his train, his girl, and his town from the Union Army) and STEAMBOAT BILL, JR. (where Keaton is the weak college-boy son of a tough Steamboat captain and he saves everyone from a major storm). They're hilarious, they feature Keaton's fantastic acrobatic comedy, and they make for a great night. If you haven't seen them, see them as soon as you can (preferably on the big screen, but of course they're available on DVD).

Matt Hoffman made his debut accompanying silent films, and he did a fantastic job.

As a matter of honesty and completeness, I do have to mention that the aspect ratio was wrong for this screening. I talked to the theater owner and this was due to their 1080p projector being broken (due to a failed firmware update), but I'm assured it will be fixed...soon, so future shows should be right. It still looked good even with the standard projector, but film geeks like me noticed the aspect ratio was off.

Total Running Time: 177 minutes
My Total Minutes: 215,810

Jason goes to Jewfest South--Wednesday, Nov 10

One double feature last Wednesday, let's do this quickly.

First up, LEAVING THE FOLD, a fascinating documentary about Jews who were brought up ultra-orthodox, but have decided to leave. We meet several of them, and I certainly at least half-understand their motives. I was never ultra-orthodox anything (never even religious anything), and love the freedom to try new ideas and constantly refine/redefine the way I understand the world. But the most interesting character is actually the father who sees both his sons walk away from the faith. What's interesting is how he doesn't react with anger or ultimatums. He's disappointed, but still loves his sons, still has them over for Sabbath dinner, and makes a remarkably intelligent case both for the orthodox lifestyle and for treating loved ones who leave the fold with respect and love, all the while hoping, praying, and trying to convince them to come back.

And the second half of the show was GUT SHABBES, VIETNAM. Rabbi Menachem Hartman is from the Chabad-Lubavich movement. They send rabbis all over the world, no matter how remote. As long as they know some Jews live there, they will send someone to live there and bring them back to the fold. And that's how Rabbi Hartman, his wife Racheli, and his baby son Levi moved to Ho Chi Minh City. Immediate culture clashes, of course, but they carry the faith, find the local Jews, and start teaching and cooking kosher. It's just a weird experience, and oddly a demonstration of just how adaptable Jewish traditions can be to just about any culture.

Total Running Time: 105 minutes
My Total Minutes: 215,633

Jason goes to Jewfest South--Sunday, November 7

Two more movies last Sunday, starting with the hilarious British comedy, THE INFIDEL. Omid Dalili plays Mahmud, a moderate Muslim living in England, watching soccer, running his shipping company, and taking care of his family. He hates radical cleric Arshad El Masri, who is currently touring England. Things are a little rough when his son wants to marry a girl who turns out to be El Masri's stepdaughter, but he plays nice and pretends he's more devout than he really is. But things get really strange when he clears out his recently deceased mother's house and finds adoption papers. A little sleuthing reveals his birth name--Solly Shimshilewitz (might as well have been Jewy Jewy Jewsteinfeldbergfarb...owitz). He starts obsessing about his hated Jewish roots (hey, he's self-loathing, he's already a Jewish stereotype!) Now maybe it's just me, but if I learned I was adopted and actually had a vastly different heritage, I wouldn't think too much about it. I'm what I (and my family and friends) have made myself, and no accident of birth will change that. And maybe Mahmud/Solly would reach that conclusion on his own in short order, but he finds that his birth father is a) still alive, b) on death's door, and c) guarded by a rabbi who won't lett Solly/Mahmud see him until he's "Jewish enough." So he turns to his neighbor/erstwhile enemy Lenny (Richard Schiff) to teach him how to be Jewish. Of course, what with balancing his Jewish identity and newly radical Muslim identity causes wacky hijinx to ensue. The ending is a little cheesy, but ultimately a defense of moderation and an indictment of phonies. But who really cares about the message, the point is it's a really funny movie.

And the second movie I saw was LOVE LIFE, a graphically erotic Israeli movie. A young, studious but uncertain, married woman develops a mysterious obsession with an old family friend. Apparently he was her dad's best friend back in the day, but her mom is very uncomfortable around him. She tries to stay away, she always goes back, he treats her like dirt, then tenderly, then like dirt again. And along the way she uncovers a troubling family secret. Fantastic acting. Usually these movies kind of bug me. I don't get why the woman would keep coming back to the man who is so obviously a bad idea. And I still felt a lot of that, but at least the excellent acting made me believe her.

And that was a week ago Sunday at south Jewfest.

Total Running Time: 218 minutes
My Total Minutes: 215,316

Jason goes to Cinema By The Bay

The SF Film Society puts on a whole fall season, and I'm always too busy/distracted for it. But I did manage to catch one day of their weekend of locally made films last Saturday. It also turned out to be all documentaries. Weird. Anyway, here's how it was:

First up, a collection of short student docs from Stanford, THE STANFORD SCENE. They were all pretty good, but as short student pieces (that had to be finished in one quarter) the dominant theme was that I wanted most of them to be longer.

SHAVING THE CASTRO: A look at a neighborhood barbershop in the Castro that's been there long enough to pre-date when all the gays moved in. And it survived the change and has become something of a neighborhood landmark.

TIGHTLY KNIT: A quirky look at knitting circles. More than just old ladies, there are all kinds. The best part is the knitting equivalent of graffiti taggers who "yarn bomb" knitted sleeves around trees, parking meters, etc.

DREAMS AWAKE: Winner of the 2010 Student Academy Award. Doroteo Garcia (who was in attendance) is an immigrant janitor whose planned short stint making enough money for his family has turned into a decade long separation. So he's turned to poetry (and union activism) to express himself.

STILL REVOLUTIONARIES: A candid, insightful look at the Black Panthers from former members Madalynn Rucker and Katherine Campbell.

AN ARCHITECT'S VISION: Chris Downey was an acclaimed architect, and then he went blind. A fascinating look at how he's coped and learned to explore space by touch and sound instead of sight.

ZEUF: Zeuf is a breast cancer survivor, a nurse, and a surfer. And this movie is about her story and particularly her body image issues and accepting herself as she is--a strong, confident, proud surfer woman (who happens to have lost a breast).

KEPT: A look at hoarder--people who collect stuff and never throw stuff out. That's a lot of clutter.

WITHOUT COUNTRY (SIN PAÍS): The story of the Mejia family, torn apart by an insane deportation system (deport the parents first, then the son who was brought to America when he was one a year or so later. Leave the daughter who was born in America here?)

Next up was the coal mining documentary (didn't I see another one of those about a week ago?) DEEP DOWN. Like ON COAL RIVER (from Docfest), it's a movie that contrasts the effects of mountaintop removal mining with the beautiful scenery of Appalachia. And it's a portrait of locals who fight to protect their land. Terry Ratcliffe's family has lived there for generations, he owns his land and built his own log house. A mining company has offered him quite a bit of money to mine the mountain just above him, but he doesn't really want to sell (although he's tempted. He makes a meager living selling handmade wood furniture). Meanwhile Beverly May is an activist who works to prevent the coal company from destroying their hollow. Also like ON COAL RIVER, there's not a lot from the coal companies' point of view. Which is kind of expected, it's hard to justify mountaintop removal on any level other than 'we can make a ton of money doing it.' And that doesn't really fly well against personal stories of people struggling to survive.

Next up, a movie 30 years in the making, ED HARDY TATTOO THE WORLD. 30 years ago was when director Emiko Omori first ventured into Ed Hardy's tattoo shop. She made a short film at the time, but now she's made a feature length film about the entire scope of Ed Hardy's life and art. He was interested in drawing at a young age, and dabbled in fake tattoos before pursuing a "serious" art career. He graduated from the San Francisco Academy of Art and was primed for a career in fine art, but sort of shocked the world by declaring he would return to his childhood fascination with tattooing and elevate it to high art. He immediately learned that tattooing was harder than he thought. He could draw, but knew nothing about how bodies moved, how deep to get the needle, etc. He apprenticed under Sailor Jerry, and quickly learned his chops and did make an undeniable impact on the world of tattoos, especially by introducing Asian motifs (including the huge all-back tattoos) as well as classic Americana. Recently he's retired from tattooing, and taken up "serious" art again. And he's opened up his own shop for his art. A good movie about a fascinating, amusing man.

And finally, the night ended with 4TH AND GOAL, a documentary about NFL dreams with a focus on the class at City College of San Francisco. Under coach George Rush, Sr. (whose son is a producer on the film, making this kind of a father worship film) City College dominates the world of junior college football. Kids who for some reason (often financial) didn't start out in a division 1 school but want to play football flock here, and coach Rush really forms a family that is not just based on dominant football, but also demands academic achievement. As much as he doesn't want to squash anyone's dreams, he knows that the chance of any of them--no matter how good they are--of making the NFL is pretty slim. But all the subjects of this film at least make it into division 1 schools on football scholarships after two years there. And for the most part, they all find there is much less of a supportive, family atmosphere there. In fact, it seems right that the one kid from Sierra Leone that coach Rush officially adopted--a young Gibril Wilson--did go on to the NFL, and won a Super Bowl with the New York Giants. Each player was allowed to bring one friend/family member onto the field with him. On the field celebrating the Super Bowl win with Gibril was coach Rush. None of the other players had a career in the NFL--some fell to injuries, some made it to training camp but were cut. But all have a starring role in this film, and their stories, drive, and love of the game make this movie work.

And that was Cinema By The Bay. Or at least the one day I saw of it.

Total Running Time: 283 minutes
My Total Minutes: 215,098

Monday, November 8, 2010

Jason goes to the 3rd i South Asian Film Festival

Once again, I've fallen a week behind on my updates. Sorry this will be kind of brief.

I'm embarrassed to say this is my first time at this film fest. Although I've seen several of their co-presentations at SFIAAFF, I was, before last Friday night, a virgin to 3rd i proper.

I am pleased to say I started my 3rd i experience with a truly wonderful night. Which just makes me more embarrassed to say this is the only night I'll spend at the festival this year. The fall calendar for film fests in the Bay Area is too crowded, but maybe next year I'll carve out a niche for 3rd i.

Anyway, 3 movies to go with the 3 eyes.

First up, a slapstick British terrorism comedy, FOUR LIONS. A group of British Muslim Jihadi-wannabes plot all sorts of terror. A couple of them travel to a training camp, where they accidentally blow up the wrong people. Back home, one (the white guy) has a brilliant plan to blow up...the biggest mosque in London. The logic (if you can use the word) is that an attack on a mosque will make moderate Muslims more militant. Of course, that doesn't exactly work if you also make a video taking credit. It all ends in a tragically slapstick marathon race with them wearing bulky costumes to cover up the explosives. Very funny. In fact, I suppose it's one Lion better than the English football team (I don't know if there's supposed to be a connection, but they're the Three Lions).

Next up, SLACKISTAN. As the title suggest, it's like SLACKERS but set in Pakistan. And that pretty much sums it up. Well made, real, and funny. It introduces us to the prosperous youth in Islamabad, a group who speak fluent English, wear trendy clothes and dine at trendy cafes. If it weren't for the occasional news report (on, e.g., the Taliban), you'd think they were American. And that's the value of the movie--breaking down the stereotypes we see on the news and showing that everyone is really in the same business of living life, with the same goals, humor, and frustrations.

And finally, GANDU (ASSHOLE). This is quite an experience. Gandu is a Bengali rapper in India who spends his time (when he's not rapping) either getting high, masturbating, or...well, not much else. Getting into trouble, I guess. After a bit of a rocky meeting with Ricksha, a crazy Bruce Lee fan who pulls...a rickshaw, they eventually become friends. And the movie becomes kinda gay. Not that there's anything wrong with that. More drugs, more insanity, then the credit rolls...and there's at least another half hour, now in color (oh yeah, it was black and white up until then) and borderline pornographic. Awesome!

Total Running Time: 276 minutes
My Total Minutes: 214,815

Friday, November 5, 2010

Jason goes to Jewfest South--Thursday, Nov 4

So I had a bit of a dilemma last night, as a film fan and as a soccer fan. Should I go to a viewing party and watch my beloved San Jose Earthquakes take on the New York Red Bulls in the second leg of their home-and-away playoff round. Or should I go to SVJFF and see a documentary

Well, I employed this oft-used logic: If I watch the game and the Quakes lose, I'll be doubly sad both that I saw it and missed what looked to be a good movie. But if they win, I'll be happy whether or not I saw it live, and I'll also get to see the movie.

So about 7 pm I was standing outside the Cubberly theater in Palo Alto, following @sjearthquakes on twitter as Convey scored the go ahead (aggregate) goal (after scoring the aggregate equalizer in the sixth minute), then New York equalized, and finally team (and league? please, please, please...) MVP Chris Wondolowski scored the series winner (on a pass from Convey) that ended the Red Bulls season and sent San Jose into the Eastern (???) Conference final (yes, Eastern conference, because they were wild cards even if they're from the West. In fact, there's a good chance the Eastern conference final could feature two Western teams, if Colorado puts away Columbus on Saturday). I have to say, following soccer on twitter is still kinda exciting. Maybe more so, as only exciting plays are tweeted.

Thankfully the Quakes put 'em away in regulation, I'd have gone insane if they went to overtime (to my European readers, MLS doesn't count road goals over home goals. And good thing, that would've negated the most exciting game in league history) and the movie started before the game ended.

Oh yeah, all that and there was a movie. AFTER THE CUP is the story of Bnei Sakhnin. Sakhnin is a predominantly Arab city in Galilee. The residents are mostly Arabs, but they're also Israeli citizens. They're the poorest team in the Israeli Premier League, but in 2004 they shocked the country by winning they Israel State Cup, meaning they represented Israel in the UEFA Cup. The team is an idealistic rainbow, featuring Arab, Jewish, and foreign players. And that's all well and good when they're winning. In the next season, they find themselves in a struggle to avoid relegation. And they find themselves plagued by hooligans--both for and against them. I suppose I could find some metaphor in there about how coexistence doesn't work if nobody wins. But I'd rather just enjoy it as a good movie with some exciting soccer scenes. And I became emotionally involved enough with the team that I despaired at their losses and cheered their victories.

Running Time: 79 minutes
My Total Minutes: 214,539

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Jason figures out how to split time at several film festivals this weekend.

Almost, I think. It's exhausting being me. Anyway, here's my plan.

Tonight (Thursday) I'm heading to Palo Alto for the Silicon Valley Jewish Film Festival screening of AFTER THE CUP.

Friday night, I'm finally going to catch 3rd I, the SF International South Asian Film Festival. Especially excited about FOUR LIONS at 7:20 and ASSHOLE at 11:30. SLACKISTAN at 9:30 will probably be cool, too.

Of course, that means I'll miss my chance at a second screening of BABNIK, from this year's Cinequest, when it plays at Cinema By the Bay. I do plan to attend the series on Saturday, though (unless I'm too exhausted). Always happy to support locally made film, and especially since Cinequest is promoting it, too.

On Sunday, I work at Niles and as soon as I'm off at 4 pm I'll head down to San Jose for yet more of SVJFF, catch a couple more films there.

Good thing I finally (for the first time in a few weeks) got completely caught up on my blog posts, because I'm pretty sure I'll fall well behind this weekend again.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Jason goes to Jewfest South--Wednesday, Nov 3

One film last night at the Camera 7, NORA'S WILL. An alternately slapstick comedy and touching drama about a death in the family. Specifically, the death of the matriarch Nora, married for 30 years, divorced for 20, and committed suicide on Passover Eve. But she was (according to her ex-husband Jose) the ultimate manipulator, as the fully set table and refrigerator full of food with instructions would attest to. Jose arrives and starts making passive-aggressive plans for the funeral--complete with calling a Catholic cemetery (oh yeah, I figures it goes without saying since I saw it at a Jewish film festival, but the family is Jewish) for the burial and ordering a sausage and cheese pizza for dinner. This doesn't sit well with the rabbi, or his son, or the rest of the family and odd characters who start showing up. And things just get worse when Jose discovers a photograph that sheds new light on their past. The whole time--based on Jose's complaints--you can feel Nora manipulating events for her own purposes. But when every Jewish cemetery in town refuses to bury a suicide within the cemetery grounds (they have a lot put aside for suicides and criminals), you get the idea that maybe her grand plan was to give her warring family a common cause to rally around.

Running Time: 92 minutes
My Total Minutes: 214,460

Jason goes to the Niles Film Museum to see THE MILPITAS MONSTER

It just so happened that it was my birthday last Sunday (yes, Halloween), and I spent it first by napping a few hours after the Indiefest/Cellspace horror movie half-marathon. And then I saw something else (besides me) that was created in 1974--a movie made by high-schoolers in the small Bay Area city of Milpitas.

So I'd been warned literally for weeks to go in with low expectations. But the fact is, THE MILPITAS MONSTER was not as bad as I expected. Yeah, there's not much budget, there aren't many real actors (just a Bob Wilkins cameo), and the special effects are laughable. But there's an energy and sense of good-natured civic pride and self-deprecating humor (Milpitas is described as the Bay Area's "breadbasket" and "waste basket"). Plus they got the mayor and chief of police to show up, and this was back in the time when high school kids could make a movie with a drunk main character/comic relief. Oh, and there's an environmental message or something--The monster comes about from pollution.

This was presented partly in support of the efforts to produce THE NILES MONSTER. Here's hoping that gets made, Niles deserves a giant rodent terrorizing it....maybe that came out wrong.

Running Time: 80 minutes
My Total Minutes: 214,108

Jason goes to about half of a 24-hour horror movie marathon

The good folks at Indiefest, just days off the end of Docfest put on a 24 hour horror movie marathon following the formula from Eli Roth. I didn't make it to the whole thing, instead I watched my San Jose Earthquakes play hard but fall 1-0 to the New York Red Bulls in the first round of the MLS Playoffs. It's a home-and-away series so they need to beat New York tomorrow by more than 1 goal to advance. Anyway, I went straight up to the city to Cellspace right after the game. WHO CAN KILL A CHILD? was playing, and I have a thing about jumping into movies halfway through, so I stayed out and chatted with some friends for a while before starting with ERASERHEAD. A quick rundown of the films I saw (and somehow I managed to catch all films I've already seen, and missed the few I hadn't seen before):

ERASERHEAD: Love the look, love the giant-faced woman in the radiator stepping on the giant sperm. Love the joke at the end that his head is actually made out of eraser. And I "get it" in as much as it's a nightmare about the fear of sex/growing up. But goddamn if it doesn't confound me every time.

SUSPIRIA: Dario Argento's classic, and builds on the dream-on-screen feel that went maybe a bit too far in Eraserhead. I've seen it several times, but this is my first time seeing it since actually visiting Freiburg. makes no difference.

CANNIBAL HOLOCAUST: This actually brings me full circle. When I first moved to the Bay Area I learned about the Roxie when they played it as part of the 20th anniversary re-release and national tour. After watching it for the first time on the big screen after several times on video (I've now seen it a few more times on the big screen), I swore I had to keep track of what plays at a theater cool enough to play CANNIBAL HOLOCAUST. The next February there was something called "Indiefest." I took a chance, figured out it was possible to see everything, and became a film (and film fest) addict. And even after all these years, the turtle-butchering scene is still worse than the penis-severing.

THE EVIL DEAD, THE ULTIMATE EXPERIENCE IN GRUELING HORROR: Damn right I'll use the full fucking title! Maligned for years by people who preferred the more slapstick sequel (and who don't acknowledge that the first one is also intentionally funny). Most of the haters (at least through the 90's) either never saw the original (only heard it sucked) or saw it on a really bad VHS copy. Thankfully years ago it was released on a great DVD print and people are getting to learn that it was great in its own right. And now it has the honor of being the 365th film I saw on the big screen in 2010. Woo hoo! Guaranteed an average of over 1 movie per day. I wonder if that's something to be proud of?

AUDITION: Great movie, but hardly anyone was there at this point. And it'll never be the same as when it was first released, and art-house audiences were drawn in to the drama not knowing that it would seriously fuck you up at the end. Now everyone knows it's horror, but it's still a great movie.

And then, by mutual agreement of the very few people who were left (all but me working for Indiefest) we decided to end without showing TORSO. I'd say that's a shame since it would've been the one movie I hadn't seen before. But I really needed sleep by then anyway.

Total Running Time: 482 minutes
My Total Minutes: 214,028