My movie ‘bucket list’: A blogging project

388201 KS_New_runnerPretty much everybody who knows me knows that I’m a movie buff. I have to go see new movies on opening weekend, I read Entertainment Weekly cover to cover, and I know far too much random movie trivia. 😉 Interestingly, though, I didn’t really become a movie buff until college, which is when I started paying more attention to the details involved in making films — special effects, music, directing styles, etc. I didn’t start blogging about movies until the year after I graduated from college.

All this brings me to a confession I feel compelled to make. My film repertoire is pretty good from 2006 on, which is when I started college. However, there are some rather embarrassing gaps in the list of movies I’ve seen, and there are some classics I should have watched by now but, well, haven’t. As a film buff whose favorite genre is science fiction, I had to confess — with much shame — that I hadn’t actually seen “Blade Runner,” which is pretty much one of the definitive classic science fiction movies. Yes, there’s no excuse for this. I also watched a Mel Brooks movie for the first time this past year, after I kept getting the “I-can’t-believe-you-haven’t-seen-‘Blazing Saddles’!” response.

So, I decided to sit down and write out a movie “bucket list,” filled with classics I haven’t seen and films people have recommended to me but I just haven’t gotten around to watching yet. I’ve narrowed the list down to several “must see” films, and I’m planning to watch some of those films over the next couple weeks and blog about the experience. I’ve tried to cover different genres with the list, as well.

Week 1: Quentin Tarantino

There’s a small list of directors whose styles are so iconic that their name is enough of an advertisement to entice people to watch a film. One of those directors is Quentin Tarantino. And yes, I know it’s bad, but I’ve never watched a Tarantino film (it’s OK, you can gasp). 😉 Tarantino is known for crafting smart, creative, hyper-violent films, and he has a very devoted fan base. I haven’t yet decided what Tarantino film to start with; I’ve had people recommend I start with “Pulp Fiction.” If you’re a Tarantino fan, I’d also love to hear your recommendations about what I should start with.

Week 2: National Lampoon’s Vacation

Released in the early 1980s, “National Lampoon’s Vacation” continues to be a beloved cult comedy. A family trip to an amusement park quickly turns into a trip to hell as the vacation collapses into chaos. The film routinely shows up on “best comedy” lists, and I’m looking forward to crossing it off my bucket list.

Week 3: The Matrix

Don’t worry, I have since watched “Blade Runner,” but I realized “The Matrix” is another science fiction movie I need to cross off my bucket list. It could be too soon to call it a classic (it was released in 1999), and I’m curious to see how well it has aged. At the time, it received a lot of buzz for its innovative special effects and its mind-bending storyline.

Week 4: The Godfather

There are plenty of strong films in the Hollywood mafia genre, but none are quite as iconic as 1972’s “The Godfather.” It’s a saga of crime, family and destiny — the dark side of the American dream. It was nominated for multiple Academy Awards, and it continues to earn respect from critics and film fans today.

I plan to start with these four films and see how it goes. I may blog about more films from my bucket list in the future. 🙂

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11 thoughts on “My movie ‘bucket list’: A blogging project

  1. Wow…. Never seen a Tarantino film?! Wow…. Lol. Actually, I honestly think you should start with Reservoir Dogs. Please start there! 🙂 With him, I’d probably go with release date starting with the oldest. The Godfather is great. I’ll always have a soft spot for National Lampoons. The Matrix is a must see for sci-fi fans (but the sequels are awful!!). I love Blade Runner. Good luck! I look forward to these reviews. 🙂

  2. Good for you!
    Nothing like watching Blade Runner for th 1st time! (But then again, my 1st time was WITH Ford’s narration & WITHOUT th unicorn dream sequence).
    Having watched clips of The Matrix just wks ago, it still holds up pretty well (bt pls avoid th 2 sequels!)
    As for Tarantino aka Great Plagiarist Of Our Times: watch Hong Kong movie: City on Fire (1987) made 5 yrs before QT remade it as Reservoir Dogs.
    Cheers!

  3. Yes. You have to start with Reservoir Dogs. Pulp Fiction is a little advanced. (I know we’re talking about his first and second movies but he grew so much between the two.) And ABSOLUTELY the entire movie Reservoir Dogs is the heist scene from City on Fire (Shot for shot) But Tarantino isn’t the greatest director. He’s the greatest writer. The dialogue is the thing. And the reason I say start with Reservoir Dogs is because it’s (more) linear and there is one set of characters. Pulp Fiction is like an anthology. There is a lot going on at once. They’re both brilliant but start with Reservoir Dogs. Pulp Fiction may just be a Tarantino overdose.

    The Matrix is still good. The movie has a built in reason why the effects could look dated. It is time proof. While National Lampoon was a great movie in the 80’s. It is tame by today’s standards. They do most of that stuff on TV now. While Mel Brooks films are never dated. They’re also timeless. Young Frankenstein, History of the World Part One, Blazing Saddles, High Anxiety (his Hitchcock parody). Tell me you’ve seen some of Hitchcock’s best. Rear Window, Notorious, To Catch a Thief, Psycho…

    And it is also true that Blade Runner is best with the Harrison Ford v.o. So if you can find the Original Theatrical Release. That’s the one. It’s like when Lucas made Greedo shoot first. They tried to improve on perfection and just made it worse.

    Love the Godfather films. I even liked 3. But it’s nowhere near as good as One & Two (two of the greatest films ever made) LIke Star Wars and Empire… One is incredibly good but then Two is even better. But if you’re getting into Coppola, he’s got a list as well. Apocalypse Now, The Conversation… both amazing.

    Sounds like fun. Look forward to your reviews.

  4. Sounds good — I will plan to start with Reservoir Dogs, then. I’m curious to see what the experience of watching “Vacation” will be like so many years after it has been made. You’re right, Mel Brooks movies are timeless. The jokes still work. I actually must also confess that Hitchcock is on my movie bucket list as well, I know that is a gap that definitely must be remedied!

    I really enjoyed “Blade Runner,” it was easy to see why it’s a classic and how it influenced other sci-fi movies that came after it.

    Appreciate all your suggestions, I’m looking forward to diving into my bucket list! 🙂

  5. Best of luck, I was much the same, but have more of a catch them when I can mentality going on. I’d add anything by John Ford to the bucket list, go back more to the roots of film with the big directors.

    Happy viewing

  6. Oh wow, it’ll be great to get your reaction to your first Tarantino movie. 🙂 My first was Reservoir Dogs, but the one that really got me hooked is Kill Bill Vol. 1. I didn’t see Pulp Fiction until after and I became totally enthralled with it, reading a ton of reviews and analysis about it online.

  7. Pingback: The good, the bad and the ugly: Looking back at five years of hits (and misses!) at Box Office Buzz | Box Office Buzz

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