October movies, part 3 of 3.

192. (499.) Brief Encounter (1945)
This romance was a reluctant recommendation. I had read that it was an inspiration for both Billy Wilder's The Apartment and John Carpenter's Starman. That may be true, but I liked both of those movies far more than this one. I'm not very sympathetic to movie characters who lie or cheat, and these protagonists do both.

193. (500.) Movie 43 (2013)
I hadn't planned it, but Movie 43 was the 500th movie I've watched in the two years I've been tracking. I think it was better than some of it's reviews allowed, but it does rely heavily on the "shock" nature of some of its extreme content for laughs when many of its vignettes could have used a little more time on script rewrites. (For the record: just showing the audience breasts or shit doesn't qualify as a joke.) The "Homeschooled" scenario was the stand-out home run of the film, the true nugget of comedy gold in thus unpolished mess.

194. (501.) The Ringer (2005)
I get that this film was an excuse to bring Johnny Knoxville into a scripted comedy that could be as offensive as Jackass. and I'd be lying if I said it was all bad. But in hindsight, if I can't remember a single laugh-out-loud gag, I have to wonder about the wisdom of a film that that uses retarded athletes as a setup for a punchline.

195. (502.) Incubus (1966)
William Shatner's infamous Esperanto movie! This damn thing was shot like a silent picture, and most scenes go on far, far too long. Shatner loves to hear himself talk, even in made-up languages! The ending is enjoyable, if a little nonsensically forced. (I had a problem with two people falling in love in one afternoon in Brief Encounter. In this movie, they fall in love over the course of a solar eclipse!)

196. (503.) The Nitwits (1935)
This is a comedy with the plot of a crime drama. I had never heard of Wheeler and Woolsey, but they apparently made 21 comedy films together in the 30s. If Nitwits is typical of their comedy, the other 20 are probably worth watching as well.

197. (504.) The Walking Dead (1936)
This is a crime drama masquerading as horror. Boris Karloff comes back from the dead to extract revenge on those who killed him. It's a little like D.O.A. meets Frankenstein meets Final Destination.

198. (505.) I Walked with a Zombie (1943)
This is a romance with the trappings of a horror movie. Looks great, with a lot of spooky moments, but it's really about a woman doing what she can for the man she loves.

199. (506.) Cat People (1942)
A woman turns into a cat when she feels she has been betrayed. That's not fiction, it's a documentary! Seriously, though, this is widely regarded as a b-picture classic, and its easy to see why. There's an over-abundance of atmosphere, and withholding the truth until the end is just the right amount of mystery.

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To be continued...

 

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