Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Mondo Anniversaries: 10 Years!

You never quite realize how long ago some films are until you really look at them. Case in point: today's films.

Star Wars- Episode 1: Ah, the movie that made the whole franchise look simultaneously great and terrible by comparison. Has it really been 10 years since Jar Jar Binks burned his visage onto the celluloid? Has it been 10 years since Jake Lloyd underwhelmed millions? Quite frankly, it has not been long enough!

The Matrix: It is hard to place another film that has so quickly placed two directors/writers on the map so quickly. In addition, it made Keanu Reeves viable again after numerous flops like Johnny Mnemonic. Mind you, most of the ideas were lifted from other sci-fi films (and would later be lifted themselves) and Eastern religion. Even so, this movie is bad-ass and should make no apologies for it. I should also mention that I actually like the sequels, although the MMORPG based on it was a bad idea. Really, guys?

The Blair Witch Project: Yeah, I didn't like this movie then and I don't like it now. I get the appeal of the 'lost footage' angle and seeing a movie that is purported to be real. Of course, this is a blatant rip-off of many other films, including The Last Broadcast (the most recent one to it at the time). In spite of that, I will give them credit for making a hit. How have the follow-ups gone, by the way? Just one bad sequel and a movie nobody saw in 2008? Oh, I see.

Deep Blue Sea: Ah yes, the movie whose greatest moment inspired a whole segment on my page. What's not to love about this movie? Giant sharks- check. Silly characters who take everything seriously- check. LL Cool J with a parrot- big check! This movie still holds up pretty well to this day, even if its CG is a bit dated at times. If you have not seen it, shame on you. Go watch Samuel L. Jackson get eaten already!

The Sixth Sense: This would be another film that put a filmmaker on the map so quickly. The whole movie is built around the twist, although it is mostly a human drama throughout. There is a certain appeal to watching it a second time and seeing if the twist holds up, which it mostly does. A couple of moments are framed in a certain way that doesn't fit, but it's not a deal-breaker. Unlike the guys from Blair Witch, he managed to follow-up on his film well...for a while. Now he's making the live-action version of Avatar: The Last Airbender. Oh well.

Some special shout-outs go to the other films, which include: Payback, Stir of Echoes, The Iron Giant, Godzilla 2000 (in Japan), Dogma, Galaxy Quest, Election, 8mm, The Thirteenth Warrior, Sleepy Hollow, The Muse, American Beauty, Three Kings, Mystery Men, Wild Wild West, The Mummy, South Park: Bigger, Longer and Uncut.

Secondly, a nod to some of the especially awful films put out in 1999 like Wing Commander, Inspector Gadget (live-action), EdTV, Forces of Nature, The Haunting, K-911, The Rage: Carrie 2, House on Haunted Hill and Universal Soldier: The Return.

Finally, just for Carl, this year was also the 10th Anniversary of Gamera 3: Revenge of Iris.

This segment will return sometime in 2010 to celebrate those anniversaries as well. Stay tuned...

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