Thursday, December 15, 2005

Have Yourself a Movie Little Christmas

'Tis the season for good films. But then, Christmas has always meant movie time for me.

When I was little, we had to incorporate the blended family's Christmas requirements in creative ways. We celebrated on Christmas Eve day with Mom, step-dad, step-brother, Gaa, Grandpa and me. Then on Christmas day, my brother went to his mom's and I went to my dad's (did I lose you yet?), which left Mom and step-dad free to go have fun.

They always spent it seeing the latest release in Westwood Village, which in the 80's, was THE place to go see the newest movies. You know, when they had single screens, not multiplexes. It's still where they have all the Los Angeles movie premieres. (It's also home to UCLA, but we're talking movies today.)

Mom used to joke that it was the best time to go out 'cause the lines were short and they'd often hit the best Jewish deli in town after. And they'd come home raving (or conversely, ranting) about what they'd seen. (Well, there was also the time Mom came home in hysterics after seeing Gallipoli. I beg of you not to watch that if you're already depressed.)

So a tradition was born.

Thankfully the film industry agrees and tends to put out great releases at Christmas time. There's a lot I want to see, and heaven knows when we'll get around to it, but here are just a few from my wish list (and yes, some of these have been out for a little while, but we've been lagging):

1. Brokeback Mountain
Thank heavens Mr. Blogger wouldn't be the type to freak out, but this cracked me up.

2. Capote
Mom already saw it and loved it and I trust her judgment implicitly.

3. Pride & Prejudice
I admit I'm an Austen fan...Austenite...Austenophile??

4. Memoirs of a Geisha
Although I'm afraid I won't like it as much as the book. Plus what's up with casting the three main Japanese geisha leads with Chinese actresses?

5. The Producers
I saw it on Broadway with Matthew Broderick and Nathan Lane and I'm interested to see if the hilariousness translates to film...TRULY one of the best times I have ever had in the theatre.

6. Match Point
I usually can't stand the latest Woody Allen film, but this seems VERY different.

7. Walk the Line
We need to catch up and see most of the Golden Globe nominees, although I freaked when I realized it'll be on while we're in London!

Some I'm not too sure about...

1. King Kong
I had no desire whatsoever to see this until I started reading all the positive reviews. But still...

2. Syriana
If I'm in the mood to concentrate really, really hard.

3. The Family Stone
It appears I do need a comedy to cleanse the palate, but this may be a bit too contrived.

And proof that I'm really not as big a snob as it may seem...

1. Wolf Creek
Oh how I do enjoy my horror movies...and it's BASED ON A TRUE STORY!

So what do YOU want to see???


Anonymous M-I-L said...

How about The Chronicles of Narnia? Isn't 'The Lion, the Witch & the Wardrobe' on there yet? That's what I want to see!

F-i-L (being brought up Jewish) always refused to read the book because he said the fact that it was "heavy Christian allegory" put him off. Not having been brought up as a Christian, the 'heavy' (or not) allegory missed me completely, as a child! Later, when it had been explained to me and I looked for the Christian allegory, of course I could see it. But it was never what I would have called 'heavy'! I adored all the Narnia books!

That's gonna be my Christmas film! :-D

10:00 AM  
Blogger Ditsy Chick said...

I would have to remove the Woody Allen movie from your list and replace it with Good Night and Good Luck. I would like to see Syriana, but maybe at home. Yes, I would add Narnia, but that is the one movie I probably will get to see with my kids. The rest, possibly on video or 5 years from now on ABC. Sigh, single momminess has its drawbacks. I love movies.

12:17 PM  
Blogger Melanhead said...

Hey, Westwood Village is STILL the place for movie debuting! Although when that bad Batman flick with Ah-nold opened, we drove by the long ticket queue shouting DEATH TO SCHUMACHER!

1:11 PM  
Anonymous mom said...

It's definitely Good Night and Good Luck, followed by The Squid and the Whale. Obviously I want to see Brokeback Mountain. What fun to do so much catching up.

Friends have raved over Narnia, Harry Potter and Kong so I'll throw those in too at some point.

Now if I could only find a restaurant like the delis in West LA.

2:33 PM  
Blogger emily said...

Walk The Line and Rumor Has It, where are your priorities?!

8:36 PM  
Anonymous V-Grrrl said...

I'm with Emily on Walk the Line and Rumor Has It. And definitely The Lion, The Witch, and the Wardrobe. The previews give me goosebumps. I took an entire course on C.S. Lewis in college. Would love to see Brokeback Mountain. Have to wait for all to come out on DVD, unless I want to see them in French or Dutch.

4:44 AM  
Blogger #1 Dancer said...

Narnia for me, though, hello!! What rock have I been under? I read the thing and you're telling me now it's CHRISTIAN!! Next you're going to tell me that the Wizard of Oz was an allegory for the Capitalist US... And I just thought these were movies.
I too am an Austen fan, but who could compare with Jennifer Ehle and Collin Firth. Ahh... Dreamy. I'm not sure I could see it. I would feel like I was cheating on Collin. I can't do that to Collin.

8:53 AM  
Blogger Rock said...

One of the cool things about living in LA is the several still interesting movie houses you can see films in to this day - that were just art deco out the wazoo. And these are single theater type deals that take up a bunch of space in high rent LA but still survive or just exist. I remember the Bruin in Westwood as one that still has premieres, but I saw "A Beautiful Mind" in anothe theater that was to die for just south of Wilshire near Westwood that was just the bomb.

4:17 AM  

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