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June 11, 2005

Movies Off The Beaten Path. [Dave at Garfield Ridge]

I would have posted earlier, but my weekends generally involve a few very important tasks: mowing the lawn, catching a ball game, shredding documents, etc.

I also see movies, lots of movies. I usually get by with going to the theater once a week, often more.

Unfortunately, my tolerance for crappy movies continues to decline. Whereas I once found myself enjoying nearly every movie I see (there's beauty in everything, except the cinematic works of Pauly Shore), I now find myself avoiding films that ooze crapitude. This obviously hurts my "water cooler quotient"-- if I don't go see something like Mr. and Mrs. Smith, whatever will I talk about come Monday?

So, my dilemma is thus: as I get older I'm getting pickier when it comes to Hollywood blockbusters, yet I really don't enjoy pretentious arthouse films, either.

Some I enjoy quite a bit-- among my favorite films of last year were Sideways, Hotel Rwanda, A Very Long Engagement, and Touching The Void-- but for the most part, I can't stand artsy-fartsy films. Not even if Eva Green gets naked.

C'mon, that's why I have INTERNET-- so I can download photos instead of seeing the movie. Efficiency, baby.

I feel that that to be good, drama has to have some purpose to it, a narrative thrust other than "Our lives are depressing, our families have secrets, watch me smoke Gauloises." I'd rather slit my wrists and bleed out into my popcorn than watch a piece of self-indulgent garbage from the likes of Lars von Trier. In the end, I need to be entertained.

Anyway, long story longer-- instead of seeing the latest Hollywood-produced dreck this weekend, I went and watched the British gangster movie Layer Cake.

If you're a fan of British gangster films like Get Carter or Sexy Beast, or even American mob films like Goodfellas, this is a great film for you. I highly recommend it.

So, this gets me to thinking-- what films off the beaten path do *you* all enjoy? If you're like me and enjoy action, thrills, and meaty drama, but can't help but be disappointed in the Michael Bay/Brett Ratner world we live in today, where every film is mere "product" destined for DVD piracy on the streets of Shanghai, well. . . what movies would you recommend?

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posted by Ace at 04:38 PM

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