project movies

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Sunday, February 20, 2005
So, today I was working working working on my project. I thought I would surely get it all done today and not have to worry at all tomorrow with the 4pm deadline. ha ha ha. One day you would think I'd learn. So, while I was painting and gluing and cutting things out, I decided to watch movies. Movies during projects have to be a particular kind for me - something I've seen many times before is a good type, because then I can just sort of listen along and I don't lose a lot of time watching and not working. I don't know why I like doing projects to movies more than music, but I do. I like writing to music, though. Anyway:
1. Ever After - I finally got this on DVD for Christmas - we had it in VHS, but DVD is just so much better. I hadn't seen this Cinderlla retelling for a while, PLUS there was a certain design on the jacket that I am supposed to incorporate into my project, so I chose it. In addition, I like Drew Barrymore (even with her crazy accent in this), and Dougray Scott is just too cute and charming (as he should be, as the prince). And Angelica Houston is PERFECT.

2. The Wedding Singer - This is when my overall theme started to develop - Drew Barrymore movies? Just wait and see. I love this movie - it is Adam Sandler at his sweetest, but with a little of his trademark rage in appropriate places. My sister and I still say things you could have told me YESTERDAY, as Sandler's character says to the girl who jilted him at the alter by saying "I don't ever want to marry you." PLUS, lots of great 80's tunes and a reminder that not every garment constructed in that decade was completely horrible. It really is one of the better "set in the 80's" movies that I've seen. Although now that I think of it, I'm not sure there are others. Are there? Billy Idol cracks me up in this movie every time.

3. Cinderella - The Disney Animated version - this ties together with the others because it is Cinderella, which Ever After also was, which had Drew Barrymore. It all makes sense in my head, anyway. There are parts of this movie that are really stupid and dated, and there are parts that are just lovely and charming. I have a memory that may be false (although I don't think it is) of being sick at school (at a young age) and my Dad coming to pick me up and taking me to see this movie instead of going home. Good things about this movie: The Fairy Godmother scene - classic, really; the little animals making a dress for Cinderella (and the whole Cinderelly song. I know I should probably hate it, but I can't! They sound like the chipmunks!); the ball. Things that are bad: why WHY why does she feel the need to make clothes for mice? That's just crazy. Cats are typecast as being represented by the evil Lucifer. I mean, with a name like that does he stand a chance? Things I noticed this watching: The two stupid step-sisters (it is really a stretch to call them wicked - they are venal and mean and stupid, but that does't make wicked in my book. Their mother, on the other hand - totally wicked.) remind me of Miss Bingly and the other one from the A & E adapatation of Pride and Prejudice. Prince Charming - totally a himbo. He gets about 5 lines of dialogue (that's being generous), and manages to look completely vacuous for a CARTOON. That's some himbosity! And the final thing I'll note here is that Lucifer the cat totally has opposing thumbs! This is disturbing - moreso than shirts but no pants on all the mice! Lucifer uses his thumb and gripping abilities to keep poor Gus trapped under the bowl. Oh! I lied - one more thing I noticed - the beginning says it is from the Perrault version, which apparently differs from the Grimm version by having the pumpkin and fairy godmother (or so the opening of Ever After would have me believe - I guess I could do a little research on my own). ANYWAY, this reminds me of the Cinderella Pumpkins (also known as french pumpkins) that I see at the farmer's market in the fall. They are beautiful bright orange, and look just the trick for making a carriage (opposed to making a jack-o-lantern). If you scroll down on this page you'll see a picture.

4. The Big Lebowski - this ties in because of Steve Buscemi! He was also in the Wedding Singer (and brilliant, of course). I love this movie. It is so freaking weird and just rambles all over Los Angeles, sort of like the shaggy dog of the shaggy dog story, but with slightly more purpose. It gets better every time I watch it. Everyone in it is perfect for the part they play.
2 comments on "project movies"
  1. You should re-read the Perrault and Grimm versions of Cinderella. I should too! I remember reading them in a fairy tale seminar I took with Lillyman (is there a better name for a professor who teaches fairy tales???). Anyway, I remember his reading of the Perrault version being that his Cinderella is much more of a conscious heroine than Grimm's. I can't remember if I agree, but his take was that while the Grimm character sort of stumbles through to success through chance, the Perrault one is smarter and actually manipulates her chances a bit, knowing that winning the Prince is her ticket to escape. Yep, I think I will reread them. If I'm feeling really ambitious, I might even try to do the Perrault in French. It might take a month, but it would be good for me. :-)

  2. I can tell you right now I won't be tackling the Perrault version in French! It would take me a YEAR (it has been a while)!! I really should re-read both though - for my nano project I read about umpty billion versions of Snow White. That was really interesting. I rewatched the Disney version of that too. I was surprised because I am always hearing how Disney sanitized the stories, but Snow White was still surprisingly dark - and a lot of the sanitization happened before Disney got there. Not that I am some sort of Walt Disney apologist or anything - I just think it has gotten to be cultural shorthand (in some circles) that whatever they do is a perverted version of the original, when the truth is that almost EVERY version is altered from the one that came before it. I guess the problem comes in because people start taking the Disney version as the definitive one. But people do the same with the stories the Grimms collected too.
    Lillyman IS the perfect name for a fairy tale professor!


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