Saturday, January 25, 2014

Perflix of the Day

Here are a couple films I forgot to include in my original list (as opposed to new additions that I haven't seen previously).  Enjoy!

  • Children of Men
  • War Games
  • 28 Days Later
You may not have heard of Children of Men but it is a very unique and interesting post-apocalyptic story.  It is sort of made in a low-budget style of futurism depiction reminiscent of A Clockwork Orange (a wonderful Kubrick classic).

On the subject of Kubrick, while I included The Shining on my list, I have been hesitant to include Orange (above) and others (2001, Lolita, Dr. Strangelove) simply because it's been awhile since I watched them and need to watch them again to make a determination.  The same could be said for many many earlier films from the 30s through the 60s (another Kubrick, Spartacus, as an example) - I just haven't seen them or haven't seen them in a long time.  With two little boys, time is my limitation…  

Note: I did include A.I., which Kubrick handed off to Spielberg at some point and remains one of my favorite movies of all time for some weird reason.  

War Games speaks for itself - a classic.  Who doesn't love War Games?!

28 Days Later is a zombie movie but about the most plausible zombie movie one could make.  Because of this realism it will scare the hell out of you in a way Walking Dead never will.  The effects are awesome.

I will be watching E.T. in the near future.  I liked it when I was young but I doubt many Spielberg movies (Raiders was probably his finest work) will make the grade.

Last comment of the day:  I watched The Dark Crystal with my 4 year old son yesterday and really liked it (again, not having seen it in probably 20 years) but it doesn't quite make the grade as a Perflix in my opinion, though very very close.

Monday, January 13, 2014

Perflix of The Day

Once in a while I come across a movie that I think to myself "wow, now that was a perfect movie".  I usually make that comment to my wife and she gives me a quizzical look.  It's not something I can easily put my finger on, but it's how certain movies make me feel.  I guess I would characterize the feeling as complete and utter satisfaction similar to the feeling after you've eaten a great meal.  Or the feeling you get after giving a presentation or performance and thinking "nailed it!" - pure elation.  Another simile would be a perfect classic car model that you think to yourself "why didn't they just stop there?".

If I find myself annoyed by a segment of the film or a character, it's out.  If I find myself trying to find holes in the plot, or wondering and doubting about it - basically any thoughts of how it could've been better - it's out.  If I don't have the immediate sense that I want to watch it again, it ain't making the list.  If I'm thinking about it for days, weeks, months after watching it, it's probably on this list - I have been moved in some way.

I'm sure there is a way to quantify and characterize it more scientifically, and perhaps I will figure it out someday.  One thing I'm convinced of is there is some secret sauce to what makes a perfect film.  Until I figure it out, it is just an innate feeling for me.  Some may not agree with my selections and this list is by no means complete - it's mostly contemporary.  It's simply what I've been putting in my iPhone notes for a couple years and I finally came around to putting it out there (after watching Warm Bodies last night).  Consider this a first installment.  There are more that I will certainly be reminded of and feel free to make recommendations.

There are many great films (please don't be offended if your favorites aren't listed); these are just the ones that gave me that giddy feeling that I had just witnessed something, well, perfect.  Enjoy!

In no particular order:
  1. Alien
  2. Top Gun
  3. Ferris Bueller's Day Off
  4. The Road
  5. Warm Bodies
  6. The Shining
  7. School of Rock
  8. Say Anything
  9. Hi Fidelity
  10. Fight Club
  11. Risky Business
  12. Star Wars
  13. Brokeback Mountain
  14. Animal House
  15. Jerry McGuire
  16. Silver Linings Playbook
  17. Dallas Buyers Club
  18. Raiders of the Lost Ark
  19. No Country for Old Men
  20. Tangled