Friday, April 11, 2008

Friday Question

(a weekly feature, at least until I start forgetting to post it or lose interest)

Let's switch over to movies this week.

You're traveling. Alone. You're in a hotel and you've got some time to kill. Maybe it's evening. Maybe it's morning and you don't have anywhere to be until 1pm or something. Regardless: alone and spare time. So you watch TV. And you're flipping around the various channels and you come upon THAT ONE MOVIE. The movie that you know you're going to get sucked in to watching even though you've seen it before. Maybe many times. But you just throw the remote over your shoulder because you know you won't watch anything else when that movie is on. It has power over you.

This week's question: What is your toss-the-remote movie? The one that saps your free will and makes you watch.

I'll go first. Back to the Future. I have to watch it. And I think it's for all the little moments. George McFly falling out of a tree, Marty being mistaken for a sailor in a life jacket, Marvin Berry calling his cousin Chuck, Biff's comeuppance. Knowing that there's always a moment like that around the corner means I can't leave the set.

Moving up fast on the list: Ocean's 11. Soderbergh/Clooney/Pitt/Bernie Mac version. Again, too many perfect moments to steer away from. Damon in the bar in Chicago, the Mormon brothers racing cars, Pitt and Clooney wondering if ten would be enough but maybe they need one more. Don Cheadle's terrible dialect which isn't really a moment but just a hilarious abomination. Enough perfect moments that I can endure Julia Roberts angry giraffe-like performance.

Again: What is your toss-the-remote movie?

18 comments:

Scott Chicken said...

I'm going to go with three, two sports-themed and one not.

1. Bull Durham. I've seen this like 97 times if not more. I own it. I love it. It sucks me in because there's always a great line around the corner ("Well, candlesticks always make a nice gift. You could find out where she's registered, maybe get them a place setting...ok, let's get two!"), because 95% of the time Kostner is right on the money and the 5% where he's off he's so far off it's laughably painful ("Wake up. You were dreaming. We're almost home."), and because the cast is great.

2. The Replacements. I'm a sucker for football movies, and this one is more sucker than the others mainly because it's such a sappy classic "scrappy kids do good" kind of thing. That and the fact that smoking athletes have cracked me up since the "Smokin' Outfield" of HJT's "Ramblin' Rasputins" softball team back in '88.

3. The Fifth Element Of all the sci-fi movies that I inevitably get sucked in to this one keeps me coming back because it's so intentionally campy. The sets and colors are outrageous, Chris Tucker is insanely over the top, Bruce Willis is Bruce Willis, and Milla Jojovich is, well, hot (and an ass-kicking alien). Oh, and Gary Oldman does crazy super-villain better than most.

KikiRiki said...

The Thing Called Love

Granted not the best movie ever made, but every time I see it is playing I stop, sit still, and watch to the end. Luckily it isn't played all that often anymore.

I heart this movie for oh so many reasons, here are just a few:
* River Phoenix (in one of his last movies.
* Samantha Mathis and Dermot Mulroney, before they were very famous (their performances even manage to make Sandra Bullock look good).
* The music. As a closet Country Music lover the music in this movie made me want to sing along.
* Hilarious scenes like this on with Dermot as Kyle:
[Kyle runs into back of a guy's car and a crowd gathers]
Driver: Didn't you see the stop sign?
Kyle Davidson: That's my song!
Driver: Well, that's my car!
Kyle Davidson: That's my song playing on the radio!
Driver: You wrote that song?
Kyle Davidson: Yeah!
Bystander: You're a better songwriter than you are a driver.
Kyle Davidson: That's my song!
Bystander: That song's all right.
Kyle Davidson: Kinda makes ya wanna pat your foot, doesn't it?
Bystander: You shoulda patted the brake one time.
Kyle Davidson: That's my song!
Bystander: You got two hits in one day!

Anonymous said...

Shawshank Redemption

i love it all. red is black. the kid gets axed. and the good guy actually makes it.

john said...

Wife says: Rushmore.

Anonymous said...

Office Space.

But I thought about Shawshank as well.

Jennifer said...

Shawshank Redemption was the first to come to mind. Seeing that it's been done, I feel compelled to come up with another. Breakfast Club will do it to me as well. Though, I don't have a TV and don't generally turn on the TV in a hotel, so this is all from memory.

Cara said...

Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan. I love this movie. I've seen it at least 100 times. I always cry when Spock dies. I can turn on the movie two minutes before that scene, and I still cry.

The Godfather.

Shawshank. Even during that period when it was always on cable somewhere, no matter what day or time.

Dave Sailer said...

Since "Talk Like A Pirate Day" doesn't come around until September 19, I still have a few moments to answer this, but must be brief for time flies.

Also, since I'm crosseyed, I have to pick two movies, both of which I own copies of, and both of which I've re-watched in the past couple of weeks. Tadaa(!): "Memento" and "Fight Club", two nearly perfect movies.

The only perfect movie I've ever seen was "Wallace and Gromit: The curse of the were-rabbit". When I say perfect I mean without inconsistencies. And fun. With lots of bunnies. Makes me want to be clay again. Arrr. Come to think of it I'll pick all three movies as my One Movie (TM). Even if I have to grow another eyeball.

How hard could that be? And I have a spare eye patch too...

Tina Rowley said...

Moonstruck. Rushmore. And I kind of can't turn away from Animal House.

nancymcjensen said...

Fellowship of the Ring.
Run Lola Run.
Bourne Identity (but only Identity - not Supremacy, not Ultimatum.)
Ocean's 11.

And in a funny way they're linked.
Elijah Wood (FOTR) dated Franke Potente (BI, RLR) who worked with Matt Damon (BI, O11).

Kimm said...

I think I'll have to go with... all of them. If I turn it on, I'm totally sucked in.

I once watched some show for 25 minutes, trying to figure out what I was watching when all I saw was two guys looking at each other the entire time. Seriously - NOTHING happened. Apparently it was some cable access show where they really did just sit at stare at each other for a half hour.

I feel better, though, realizing I can't be the only one. These days, many movies say what they are at END of the movie too, as well as the beginning. I figure that MUST be for all of us who get sucked in partway through and just want to know what the @#%!@ we just watched.

Christopher said...

I gotta second "ST-II:TWoK", lots of great little moments that Meyer manages to pull out of a cast that thinks they know theor roles oh-so-well-that-NO-director-could-ever-possibly-improve-upon-them: Shatner's reaction to the Romulan Ale, the Ben Franklin glasses, the guy vaccuming the floor, KHAAAAAAAAN! Scotty dragging his dying nephew up to the bridge (?); Ricardo Montalban's Wagnerian performance, plus, his Michael Jackson "one glove" bit; Meyer's sly tribute to Bob Wise's "Run Silent, Run Deep" - so many more.

Stanley Kramer's "It's A Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World" - never shown on TV anymore, probably because of it's nearly 3 hour running time, but geez, there has never been a movie before or since that managed to pack as much comedic talent onto the screen as this. The scene at the airport, when Mickey Rooney and Buddy Hackett are trying to land the Beechcraft, and the camera pans down the row of emergency personnel, then lingers for just a moment on Larry, Moe, and Curley Joe in their firefighters gear always makes me laugh out loud, even after what must be the 30 or 40th viewing.

shannieshooshoo said...

Magnolia. Sucks me right in. That part where they all sing the Aimee Mann song! The plague of frogs!

Anonymous said...

Sixteen Candles!

Back in high school in the early 80's my parents frequently went away for the weekend to bowling tournaments (for real) or two-week camping trips (if you didn't have a job you had to go with them--we got jobs). We had between 3 to 5 teenagers in the house depending whether anyone was home from college.

We'd rent a VCR the size of a Samsonite and get Sixteen Candles & The Road Warrior and had a series of events we called "Bong-a-thons". They were classy because we used Roman numerals--Bong-a-thong IV!

Basically it was beer, bongs, beer-bongs, food from the local stop & go` and those movies. Sometimes there were other movies too but ALWAYS those two movies.

We knew every hysterical nuance in both but Sixteen Candles is the one that stands the test of time for me.

I have a sixteen year old daughter now practically had to force her to watch Sixteen Candles. And no, we will not be leaving her home alone for a weekend. Thankyouverymuch.

Paige said...

Say Anything ("You must chill!")
Bull Durham ("Rose goes in the front, big guy.")
Field of Dreams ("You said your finger was a gun.")
Meatballs ("Hi, Mickey!")
Raising Arizona (insert yodeling here)

Max said...

The Road To El Dorado. Between the album-quality Elton John soundtrack, the smart dialog, and the amazing voice chemistry between Kevin Kline and Kenneth Branagh, it's just too perfect not to watch.

J said...

Mine is The Last Emperor
The cricket scene at the end is such a climax to an underrated epic

umgrego2 said...

Wow, great idea for discussion!

1. The first one that pops into my mind is When Harry Met Sally? Talk about lines, I could quote that movie all day long.

"you made a women meow?"

"baby fishmouth, BABY FISHMOUTH!"

"...this stupid wagon-wheel, Roy Rogers, garage-sale coffee table."

2. Ferris Bueller's Day Off

Defintely served as my tourist guid e when I finally visited Chicago.

"see what finsky can do to a guy's attitude?"

"Gee, Ed, with your bad back, you shouldn't be throwing anybody."

"GRAAAAAAAACE!"

"Want a gummy bear? It's been in my pocket so it's warm and squishy."

The funny thing is that I own copies of both of those movies and never pop them in to watch.

... and the list goes on.