06
Nov
09

#98: Unforgiven, #30: Treasure of the Sierra Madre, #26: Dr. Strangelove

Sadly, my journey down the AFI list has been moving rather sluggishly the past few weeks.  Top priorities have been the wedding I attended in Arizona and Halloween festivities.  While I didn’t find time to catch a flick as the bride walked down the aisle or in between slamming back Solo cups of ghoulish punch, I managed to see a few films despite my demanding wide open schedule.

While my quest is noble and sometimes tedious, I have to remember that I’m not the only one who has set out to complete the film challenge.  Enter Mike Harvkey, who is in the list of links when I search “AFI Top 100, man, woman, watch.”  And though Mike has wisdom, age and many more writing credentials on his side, I’m farther along on the list.

Then there’s Shau, which I want to say is his actual name, but might have just accidentally left off the “n” when creating his blog.  I gotta hand it to the guy, he strives for organization, thoroughness, and an overall multimedia experience that my blog just can’t compete with.

Unfortunately, there are those who never complete the crusade.  Take for instance BugAJ.  He started in December 2008 and stopped watching in January 2009.  It should be noted here that he was watching the revamped 10 year anniversary edition of the list, which in my view is blasphemous and not the true AFI list.  His blog remains as barren as an old ghost town.  I wonder what made him quit.  Probably decided to get a life, unlike us poor schmucks tethered to our DVD players.

Though it takes some wind out of my sails to know others are taking on the film list to end all film lists, it’s comforting to know that someone else in this world is ransacking their local video store to find a copy of Dr. Zhivago because Netflix doesn’t have a copy.  Each person has their own way of tackling and documenting the list, but our goal remains unified: watch all 100 AFI movies so we can be pretentious snobs about it.  And with that, I wish my fellow comrades the best of luck.

Unforgiven_2Who woulda’ thought that one of the greatest westerns of all time would be made in my lifetime?  And who woulda’ thought it’d star Clint Eastwood?  Okay, I guess that part’s plausible.  Unforgiven (#98) takes all your standard western genre fodder and shakes it up a bit.  Eastwood (who directed the film as well) plays William Munny, an ex-gunslinger who hangs up his spurs and evil ways after his wife’s death.  When word gets out that a group of prostitutes are willing to pay big bucks to avenge an attack on one of their girls, Munny and pals (Morgan Freeman and Jaimz Woolvett) head to the little town of Big Whiskey to collect.  However, machiavellian sheriff Little Bill (Gene Hackman) is waiting for them and will stop at nothing to keep order in his town.  Unforgiven pokes holes in the western mythology and replaces them with real bullets and real sacrifice.  However the dialogue begs the question, did people in the old west frequently use modernized cuss words?

Brett HeadBrett HeadBrett HeadBrett Head4 out of 5 Brett Heads

TreasuremadreFred Dobbs and Bob Curtin (Humphrey Bogart and Tim Holt) are just a couple of gringos looking to make a buck in the film The Treasure of the Sierra Madre (#30).  A chance meeting with an old prospector (Walter Huston) sends the trio scouring the mountains of Mexico for gold.  But after striking it rich, Dobbs becomes delusional and consumed by greed, determined to get his share… and more.  Yes, this movie features the highly misquoted line, “Badges?  We ain’t got no badges” (this being the correct delivery).  Despite memorable quotes and superb performances, the film loses its stride midway through on account of poor pacing.  Either that or poor attention span, as I was more concerned with pictures of Kim Kardashian in my girlfriend’s Cosmo.

Brett Head Brett HeadBrett Head3 out of 5 Brett Heads

Drstrangelove1sheet-Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb (#26) might be the funniest movie about nuclear war ever made, or rather, the only funny movie about nuclear war.  The story follows a U.S. Air Force General as he acts on his own authority to launch a preemptive attack on the Soviet Union.  As a result, the President and his advisors scramble to thwart a nuclear holocaust.  With Kubrick behind the camera and an explosive cast (no pun intended) in front (Peter Sellers, George C. Scott, and Sterling Hayden), this dark comedy is definitely worthy of a place on the list.  The best part?  Sellers plays not one, but three standout roles, making him the Eddie Murphy and the Klumps of his day.

Brett HeadBrett HeadBrett HeadBrett HeadBrett Head5 out of 5 Brett Heads

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1 Response to “#98: Unforgiven, #30: Treasure of the Sierra Madre, #26: Dr. Strangelove”


  1. 1 Amanda
    November 6, 2009 at 5:57 pm

    This post gets 4 outta 5 Amanda-Heads. You lost a head for extraneous sexual references. Whoops!


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