I use these mini-marathons to reacquaint myself with old favorites, so they can only include films I've seen before. I pick film that I've been keen to re-watch for a while, and I try to design a program that will make them flow well together. It usually means: A film for the morning, a film for the afternoon, and two films for the evening.
The upcoming Easter holiday presents an excellent opportunity to do this again. This particular program I've put together is also a potential Bluray marathon, since all the films here have been released on high-def.
But enough talk, let's fight:
Film #1: The Goonies (1985)
"OK! I'll talk! In third grade, I cheated on my history exam. In fourth grade, I stole my uncle Max's toupee and I glued it on my face when I was Moses in my Hebrew School play. In fifth grade, I knocked my sister Edie down the stairs and I blamed it on the dog..."
We open the ball with an Eighties classic. This should be watched lying on the couch in your pajamas, while eating breakfast.
Richard Donner directs the story of a bunch of mismatched kids who go on a treasure hunt in an attempt to save their neighborhood. It's fun, full of adventure, and most importantly: It's not exclusively aimed at kids. Plus, Steven Spielberg wrote the story, what more do you need? They sure don't make films like this any more.
Film #2: Twister (1996)
"The Suck Zone. It's the point basically when the twister... sucks you up. That's not the technical term for it, obviously."
Ex-cinematographer Jan De Bont directs this tale of a band of hurricane chasers and does it with the subtlety of a nuclear explosion. This is so bad. And yet, so much fun. Gotta love the way Bill Paxton and Helen Hunt just COMMITS to the whole ridiculous thing. And it's got Philip Seymour Hoffman in it as well! He won an Oscar you know.
In the wake of Jurassic Park Hollywood tried to figure out just how much they could push the envelope with CGI. They haven't stopped pushing yet. This, though, belongs to the early days of the big CGI films, which makes it kinda charming.
Film #3: Smokin' Aces (2006)
"How bad?" "Mortal..." "What?" "Mortal!" "No! F**k!"
We're kicking it up a notch with this unbeatable kick-ass-awesome action movie. This is not just style over substance, more like: style has knocked substance down, cut off its face and is now wearing it as a mask.
This is just a story about a lot of contract killers who are going after the same guy, and the cops who try to protect him. Luckily director Joe Carnahan infuses the plot with the most excessive, beautiful, raw action-film style seen since John Woo did The Killer.
Film #4: A Modern Horror film
"It's okay, we're cutting your arm off."
So this is a cheat, because here we have a choice between three modern horror movies. Take your pick!
The Orphanage (2007) is a classic horror film, spliced with Asian horror antics. A couple plans to open an orphanage in the women's childhood home, but it all goes horribly wrong when their son begins to communicate with an "invisible friend".
Silent Hill (2006) is a great combination of mainstream CGI thriller, and dark, underground mystique, as Radha Mitchell search an abandoned mining town for her missing daughter, under the watchful eye of director Christoph Gans and Danish cinematographer Dan Laustsen.
Splinter (2008) is a near perfect low budget body-horror film, dealing with a few random travelers who find themselves stalked by a weird parasite at a gas station. It's one location. Four actors. The CGI is used sparingly, but well. Plus, it's just so damn nasty and creepy. A perfect end to the evening.
This is my program for a Easter Holiday Mini-Movie Marathon, feel free to use it, or come up with your own. And if you do that, please share it in the comments below.