August 15, 2011

Cine-Smackdown: #21-#30

80 movies down! The end is in sight! I can view all the movies left at once on the right side of your screen! Your screen... because I'm standing behind you looking at it. HA! Made you look.

21. Chinatown
22. Some Like It Hot
23. The Grapes of Wrath

24. E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial

To Kill a Mockingbird
26. Mr. Smith Goes to Washington

High Noon
All About Eve
Double Indemnity
30. Apocalypse Now

I had not seen Chinatown (though I had started), The Grapes of Wrath, To Kill a Mockingbird (though I had assumed I had), Mr. Smith Goes to Washington, High Noon, Double Indemnity or Apocalypse Now (which I also thought I'd seen) previous to the blogviews. I had seen the comedies and the Spielberg. Nice.

Of these ten, which would I move further up the list?
For all-around brilliance I think it'd be hard to argue for anything but All About Eve. That cast! That screenplay! All the others have their good points but you just can't beat Eve and Margo.

Of these ten, which would I get rid of?
Oh man. Now this gets hard. These are all total classics! This was easier further down the list, but up here where the air is clearer it's harder to find things to pick apart. After lots of consideration, even though I liked it, I think it might be Mr. Smith Goes to Washington, if only because the others seem more singular, and I feel like there's other movies here like Mr. Smith.

Who in these movies do I want as my best friend?
Um, duh: E.T.! You bring the sweetness and the finger-glowing, I'll bring the Reese's Pieces.

Who in these movies do I want to have my back in a bar fight?
Atticus Finch (To Kill a Mockingbird) wouldn't really do me much good, I'm guessing, since he's such a pacifist. But in case that would keep me from getting sucker-punched, I'd keep him around. Will Kane (High Noon) might be a little old, but he can keep bad guys at bay all by himself, even if Grace Kelly threatens to leave town right after he put a ring on it. J.J. Gittes (Chinatown), Tom Joad (The Grapes of Wrath) and Captain Willard (Apocalypse Now) are all live wires and might not be the best guys to have around.

Who in these movies is your worst frienemy?
In light of current events, I'd like to say the Congress (Mr. Smith Goes to Washington). I thought they were gonna help me out but then they give me the silent treatment and become total assholes. Phyllis Dietrichson (Double Indemnity) might stab me in the back, or more accurately, choke me from the back. But do frienemies come more glossy and horrible than Eve Harrington (All About Eve)? Whatever, I saw right through her.

Who do I take home to Mom?
Jefferson Smith (Mr. Smith) is totally my mom's type, but she'd probably be creeped out by E.T. like all the adults are. C'mon Mom! He just needs to use the phone!

You're going on a date with these movies. Who do you agree to meet for coffee but never call again?
The Grapes of Wrath: we all know we should appreciate John Steinbeck but man you're a downer, and you ended our date with a weirdly out-of-place diatribe about how you'll be "all around in the dark" and that you'll be "everywhere." Ummmmmmmmmmmmmkay.

Who do you agree to meet for coffee, and then say you'll call but never do?
High Noon. Uh oh, does that make me the cowardly townsfolk who don't help Gary Cooper? I think it does. Whatever, he'll do a better job without me.

Who do you agree to meet for coffee, and then not show up?
Apocalypse Now. Does that mean I'm skipping out on my civic duty? If my civic duty means encountering fat Brando in Cambodia, I think I'll flee to Canada.

Who do you meet for a first date, ends up staying the night and makes you breakfast in the morning?
Mr. Smith totally would, even though we talked all night (I mean, ALLL night) -- I'm seeing that he's one of the only really likable characters in this line-up, and his movie is the one I said I'd get rid of. Oops. Sorry, Jeff. Ma Joad (The Grapes of Wrath) would give me everything she had just out of the kindness of her heart, sweet ol' thing.

Who do you meet for a first date, ends up staying the night and then leaves in the morning without saying goodbye ... and steals your favorite sweater?
Evelyn Mulwray (Chinatown) has some secrets to keep. And which bitch in All About Eve wouldn't screw me over? Maybe not Karen. But she'd drain my gas tank to teach me a lesson!

What other questions would you have asked about these movies? I'd love more ideas! Leave your thoughts, reactions, passionate defenses and harsh critiques in the comments!

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