I’m going back in time to my first entry in the Iron Director series, borrowing the same theme. My first entry was about two directors who I’d become obsessed with in 2010–François Truffaut and Rainer Werner Fassbinder. This entry will focus on two more directors I’ve developed an obsession about over the last 18 months–Billy Wilder and Preston Sturges. When you’re a hardcore film nerd, you spend too much of your time trying to spackle in the cracks in your film knowledge. Hollywood’s 1940s and 1950s heyday was certainly a crack for me until somewhat recently. As such, I’ve started slowly tackling various actors and directors from the era. Wilder and Sturges have emerged as directors whose style resonates with me–both comic, both deep, both mastering the dramedy in ways that few (if any) directors have done since. Which one is better?
First, let’s take a quick look at which films I’ve seen from Wilder and Sturges and how I’ve rated them. Note that all films are rated on Netflix’s five star system. Here’s an infographic: Continue reading
While summer doesn’t technically start until June 21st, the sun has already started the process of goring us like a bull might with its horns. Here in St. Louis, we just completed a stretch of 13 days in which 11 of them featured 89 degree temps or higher. Five of those days were 92 and above. And in St. Louis, nestled between the Missouri and Mississippi Rivers, it’s not just the heat. It’s the humidity. Summer here is a lot like living inside of a dog’s mouth for a third of the year. I imagine it’s becoming brutally hot all over the country. Having said all of that, as you can plainly see, I’ve started my annual rite of becoming an angry, ornery jackass about the oppressive heat. But I’m not the only one who’s affected by the hot weather. Here are some movies in which heat waves changed everything. Continue reading
As the clichéd saying goes, “Art imitates life”. And thus, since film is a form of art, it also imitates life. And films that imitate life wouldn’t exist if people weren’t populating theaters to watch them… which is a part of life. Naturally, films have featured some really great scenes in movie theaters. Here are some of my favorites.
Taxi Driver (1976)
The unimaginably awkward Travis Bickle scores a date with the beautiful Betsy (Cybill Shepherd) and takes her to the movies. The punchline- the horribly uncomfortable punchline that makes the viewer wince- is that Bickle’s idea of a dream date is taking her to a pornographic film, even despite her protestations upon realizing where he’s taken her. Continue reading