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Showing posts from November, 2009

The 46x60 or So Project, Pt. 4: Getting A Party Started Which Has Already Begun...

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I have called it quits. The building of The 46x60 or So Project: Roughly 5000 Films from 1964-Present is over. Well, at least, 99% of it is...
As of today, not counting 2009, which will not be finished until after the awards get announced early next year, from 1964 through 2008, these are the stats: Total Films on List: 4966Total Films Not on DVD: 1372 (27.62%)Total Films on List Seen Since April 2005: 725 (14.59%)Total Films Left to See: 2869 (57.77%) Average Films Per Year: 110.35 Biggest Year 1964-1969: 1964 - 101 films Biggest Year 1970-1979: 1973 & 1974 - 108 films each Biggest Year 1980-1989: 1987 - 127 films Biggest Year 1990-1999: 1996 - 139 films Biggest Year 2000-2009: 2006 & 2007 - 144 films each It seems like an awful lot of movies to watch, and it is. But, it is not so out of bounds as you might think.
Here's one way to think about it: Say you are an average person, and that you rent five movies a week from your local Blockhead-Buster. You watch maybe one a night…

The 46x60 or So Project, Pt. 3: Things Start to Get a Little Wonky...

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With my Tower of Film already swaying haphazardly in the skies above me, I was beginning to consider whether it was simply time to concentrate on watching the movies and writing about the experience of doing so.
But, there were still three crucial elements missing...
First, there were my DVDs. The thrust for the notion of adding my own collection from 1964 forward to the list was that, while a certain portion of films already entered into the 46x60 or So Project were also sitting on my shelves, there were a great many discs that I had purchased over the last couple of years of which I had yet to pause for a viewing. Since watching every available film in the project would allow me little time (or much in the way of interest) for watching films outside of it, the solution was to add every single film in my personal catalogue. Not only did this increase each year, on the average, by eight to twelve more films, cushioning the Project a tad more, but it would essentially force me to finally…

The 46x60 or So Project, Pt. 2: It's a Tower Built to the Heavens. What Could Possibly Go Wrong?

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The foundation was built, and it seemed like a decent enough place already to just skip building the new couple of floors, planting an aerial, and calling it a home. The list had already taken me about a month to create, and in my excitement, I had already started watching films in earnest. The first film I watched under the sway of this fresh delirium was 1965's Sean Connery army prison flick, The Hill, directed in truly brutal fashion by Sidney Lumet. If I had started going through the multitude of films on my list by encountering a true dud (and not one where I went in expecting vileness), I may have given up the entire project then and there. But The Hill so captured my attention that I knew straight off I had made the right choice.
But, the list itself did not seem robust enough to me. There were still films that I loved missing from the list, and films I had always wanted to see which were not appearing yet. I began to think about what was influential in the mid-60s. in the d…

The 46x60 or So Project, Pt. 1: Building a Tower of Film...

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I wanted focus, but the question was, "Focus on what?" I began to try and work out exactly where to begin reeducating myself in the film history of my lifetime. Do I start with a certain director and watch all of his available films straight through? It sounded good, but then I was likely to lapse into a state of cinematic paralyzation if I restricted myself to just one style without interruption, and how would I determine the best place to force an interruption if needed? How would I fit those moments into the plan? The same went for choosing one genre outside of my normal path and focusing on the landmark films within that genre. Except who was to establish what I should see within that genre? I considered focusing on stars, cinematographers with whom I have grown enamored and wished to see more of their work, even something as goofy as choosing a random key grip and then watching any film in which they were involved.
But, then it struck me... Considering my concerns regard…

A Preparatory Indulgence, Pt. 4: The Facts, Ma'am... (Maybe the Facts)

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On the Internet Movie Database, which most of us simply refer to as IMDb (small "b", thank you) and which has largely taken on a generally accepted position as the main online resource for instant movie information, I have (to this date) rated around 5,000 movies.

Let's get this straight from this point on: I know that I am not a complete poser. Despite what happened with The Last Detail and those other films, I am very certain of my love for the movies. It's like asking if I wish to continue breathing. And I have actually seen all of the films that I have rated on IMDb. I may not have seen some of those films for over twenty years or more, but I have seen them. The difference, though, is that I actually care and consider what I am rating on the site. 

Fully aware that the way I felt about certain films in my teens, twenties and even early thirties may not be the way I feel about those films now (and even considering the fact that I might have nothing left of the memo…

A Brief Interlude Concerning the Most Recent Halloween

Sure, a couple of days ago, I wrote about the theory that I might not actually be a horror fan anymore. For those watching me struggle with self-doubt here this week, please remember that this is all building to something. A point, if you must have a more definite term. It is really about a refocusing of purpose on my part, on shifting my attentions to a larger, more educational goal for myself regarding film.

It has never really been about whether or not I actually like horror films anymore, because I do. It is hard to enter the Halloween weekend and not watch monster movies when one has the collection of films that I do. In fact, this weekend, I ended up zipping through thirteen of the little buggers, mainly because I purposefully kept Halloween small, private and at home this year.

Not that I didn't make an attempt to make it broader and more public. I bought a pumpkin well over four weeks ago, but as of tonight, it is still sitting in the center of our dining table, uncarved an…

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