A selection from Rick’s Picks: A Bunch of Flicks that Rick Picked, the staff recommendations of Richard Lalonde, junior part-time clerk of Montrose Video.
The Dark Knight (Dir. Christopher Nolan, 2008): The understated prestige picture of last year which coyly pulls double duty as a cape-and-cowl action romp, this piece made a small splash at the Venice International Film Festival, buoyed by Aaron Eckhart’s star-turn performance as “The Face.” This film also features a passable performance by Heath Ledger, who we’re all excited to see more from.
Breathless (Dir. Jean-Luc Godard, 1960): Erratically paced and spatially incoherent, this masterpiece inaugurated the French New Wave Cinema of the 1960s, while simultaneously reconfiguring the grammar of cinema as we know it. This avant-romp provided the pointed answer to the question: “They make movies in other languages now?”
Slumdog Millionaire (Dir. Danny Boyle, 2008): Like foreign films do ya? Annoyed when you have to read them, are ya? Well cozy up, dumbass, for the most heart-warming film of the year. When some kid goes on some game show and wins a bunch of money, people can’t believe he’s that smart because he’s poor. Turns out that being poor doesn’t mean you can’t have a rich, storied and romp-filled life that can translate well into an organized trivia show context! Did you know they make movies in India too? Well English filmmaker Danny Boyle did and now he’s kind enough to share the spoils with you! And wait until you see ’em dance! This movie is soooooo cute and will make you feel sooooooo good after you’ve seen it. No wonder it won the Best Movie Ever Oscar! (Note to American audiences: a rupee is like a dollar except it’s not worth anything.)
Bride Wars (Dir. Probably some woman, 2009): Anne “Ha-ha” Hathaway and Kate “Ho-ho” Hudson take the seven-layered cake in this delightful rom-com romp. Perfect for the girlfriend/spouse trying to lamely hen-peck her boyfriend into thinking that Die Hard isn’t awesome. Dont 4get da Kleenex gurls! lol
Blue Velvet (Dir. David Lynch, 1986): This is the real Trapped In the Closet! When an All-American teen hunk (Kyle McLachlan) finds a severed ear for some reason, the smalltown sleuth gets caught up in a tangled web of rape, child-napping, woman-punching, Roy Orbison songs and imported beer. This sado-comic romp into the darker recesses of the human psyche (and Middle America!!!) will have you laughing, crying and cheering “He put his disease in me!”
Querelle (Dir. Rainer Werner Fassibinder, 1982): Not for the straight of heart, this German-language adaptation of Jean Genet’s French-language high-seas homoerotic romp is remembered for it’s surreal set-design and plaintive post-Anger homoerotic rompery. The perfect film to tell people you’ve seen.
Showgirls (Dir. Paul Verhoven, 1995): Sure sure, you’ve heard that this is one of the worst American films ever made. But how can you believe that? Have you seen every American film ever made? Have you seen Bride Wars? Are you even discerning enough to tell the difference between something that’s “bad” and a sly, ironic romp through the torrid backstage coke scene of Las Vegas, that channels everything from nudie-cutie sexploitation films to the big budget studio musicals of Busby Berkeley? Don’t you get that Jessie from Saved By The Bell is acting bad because Paul Verhoven wants her too? Did you know he made Robocop, or that he got Sharon Stone to appear pantie-less in Basic Instinct by telling her the camera wasn’t running? Are you aware that Paul Verhoven also helmed Spetters, Starship Troopers and Total Recall and that he’s ten steps ahead of you at any time?
Jurassic Park (Dir. Stephen Spielberg, 1993): The Citizen Kane of dinosaur-based cautionary tales, this sci-fi/thriller romp romped through theaters with the rip-rompin’ aplomb of a Tyrannosaurus Rex. Sam Neil, Laura Dern, and Richard Attenborough in the same film! Need I say more? Yes! Because the ‘Blum is there too! Check out the blockbuster hit you might have missed as a result of your temporary residency under a rock!
Citizen Kane (Dir. Orson Welles, 1941): The Jurassic Park of movies dealing with the lives of curmudgeonly media magnates, this Golden Age of Hollywood romp will keep you guessing until the very end, where you learn that “Rosebud” is just the sleigh Kane treasured as a child.
Thelma & Louise (Dir. Ridley Scott, 1991): When his hysteric, devil-may-care wife abandons him for a romping weekend of wanton fun and extramarital horsing-off with her loud mouth friend Louise, a stand-up husband (Christopher McDonald) teams up with a by-the-book cop (Harvey Keitel) to see if he can’t get wifey back in time for their anniversary. Keep an eye out for a young, pre-Legends of the Fall Stephen Tobolowsky!
Die Hard (Dir. John McTiernan A.K.A. GOD!!!!, 1988): In this, the only movie ever made, Bruce Willis plays a renegade New York cop who plays–get this–by his own rules. It’s shim-sham-KABLAM!!!! as Willis fricassees about a million Kraut’s like a regular Roy Rogers (whoever that is)! If you thought the Return of Bruno album was good, wait until you see Willis act! YIPPIE-KAY-AY, MOTHER$*@^#%!!!