Sunday, April 27, 2014

Movies by year: 1982

(Look out for spoilers, they're already among us!)

Wow, we're already up to 1982! This year we got another great Ustinov Poirot film, Evil Under The Sun; the visually impressive anti-corporateTron; the hilarious Victor Victoria (my favourite Julie Andrews role); Jim Henson's magic fable of a race divided and the Gelfling who must bring them together before it's too late, The Dark Crystal; and Ricardo Montalban's impressive chest coupled with Johnny Cool as Kirk's offspring in Star Trek II: The Wrath Of Khan, a mostly-perfect film.

I'm afraid I'm actually torn on this one, so I'm going to have to tell you about TWO movies...

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Movies by year: 1981

(Look out for falling mild spoilers!)

Now firmly into the 80s, we've reached the era of the blockbuster. Kurt Russell threw off the Disney stereotype as Snake Plissken in Escape From New York. Ron Perlman probably didn't need much makeup for his role as a caveman in Quest For Fire. Harrison Ford introduced us to everyone's favourite archaeologist in Raiders Of The Lost Ark (and, since we're being honest here, was more than a bit responsible for my Classical Studies and Anthropology choices at university). Terry Gilliam bent our wee little minds with Time Bandits. Mel Gibson was back in the infinitely superior Mad Max 2: The Road Warrior and hardly said a thing through the whole movie. And a little animated movie called Grendel Grendel Grendel gave us the Beowulf story from the other side. But I'm going to talk about...

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Movies by year: 1980

(Watch out, mild spoilers)

There was a real mixed bag again in 1980 - a bit of comedy (The Blues Brothers on a mission from God), a bit of terror (The Shining – All atmosphere, instead of supernatural (and there's really only one thing in the entire movie that can't be explained away), it becomes a tale of cabin fever taken to the extreme), a touch of romance (the ridiculously beautiful Somewhere In Time with lovers separated by the ages), a slice of adventure (Star Wars V: The Empire Strikes Back, my favourite of the Star Wars films), wartime exploits (Das Boot was claustrophobic and tense, the experiences of a u-boat crew over the course of WWII condensed down to one really, really bad mission) and a smidgen of musical (Popeye - perfectly cast, amazing soundtrack and the most expressive baby ever).

With such a variety, what did I choose?

Sunday, April 06, 2014

Movies by year: 1979

(Oh, did I mention there may be spoilers ahead?)

Okay, now things are heating up. 1979 was a pretty exciting year for movies – Monty Python's The Life Of Brian caused a huge ruckus, with people who had never seen it telling everyone exactly what was wrong with it. In fact, I went with my parents to see it and we weren't allowed in. 'It's PG,' they said. 'We're the parents and we'll give the guidance,' my parents said. They still wouldn't let us in. That theatre closed not long afterwards, serves them right. Malcolm McDowell was HG Wells to David Warner's Jack The Ripper in Time After Time, a wonderful time-travelling fish-out-of-water tale. Peter Sellers gave us the role of a lifetime in Being There. Steve Martin was born a poor black child in The Jerk. And Bill Murray was everyone's favourite camp counsellor in Meatballs (remember when they were trying to make Christopher Makepeace a thing?). But there's one hands-down fave for me from this year.