the familiarity of movies

From http://www.criterion.com

so my mom and i were watching a tv show called “leverage” a couple of weeks ago and the episode was about how 4 of the 5 lead characters tried to steal a priceless dagger. the ep, called “the rashomon job,” had the different characters talking about the heist from their own point of view. mom asked me about the significance of the title and i began telling her about this famous japanese movie and its deliberation on subjective reality. … and then i realized something. i’d never actually seen the movie!

it’s strange, isn’t it, how some movies have become such a part of pop culture that almost everybody knows about them without ever seeing a clip? take “rashomon” for instance … i knew it was considered one of akira kurosawa’s masterpieces … it’s the film that, arguably, introduced western audiences to japanese filmmaking … that it’s about 4 individuals’ differing versions of the same story … that it delves into the subjectivity of truth. BUT until a couple of night ago, i had never seen it (though i had read the book it’s partly based on in college).

anyway, that got me thinking of other classic movies i’m familiar with but have actually never seen β€” “lawrence of arabia,” “citizen kane” (tried to watch it once but fell asleep), “gone with the wind” and β€” would you believe? β€” the “godfather” trilogy. i plan to rectify the situation soon; i actually own the first three on DVD and my parents have the “godfather” trilogy in NJ.

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3 Comments Add yours

  1. Betis Boy says:

    are you serious about the godfather trilogy? maybe because you've read the book? but still…

    gotta agree about citizen kane though πŸ™‚ i had the same sleep-induced reaction πŸ™‚

    do you rent the classics from your library or from the regular video rental shop? i made sure i watched those including rashomon (though i don't quite remember that anymore) when i had two months to spend at the national univ. of singapore's video archive. only problem was the more interesting scenes (e.g. nudity, violence, etc.) were censored, so that greatly affected the movie-watching experience. i got to watch zhang's “raise the red lantern” there for the first time, too.

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  2. Guagua Girl says:

    oh, gotta add “raise the red lantern” to the list … i remember your personal film festival when you were in singapore … didn't you cut classes just so you finish watching movies πŸ˜› and you have to re-watch those censored films. it's just not the same without the sex, violence and gore!

    most of the time, i get DVDs from the library. but that takes a while and if i get impatient, then i get the DVDs from a red box kiosk (love them!). have you heard of these? they are basically dvd rentals for a buck a night. all you do is choose a movie from the screen, swipe your credit card and the movie comes out of the slot. you return it the same way and you get charged for however many nights you kept it. blockbuster has them, too.

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  3. Betis Boy says:

    the red box we have here is a videoke joint (and a good one too). we have lots of ambulant dvd kiosks in the streets though, ha.ha. also for around a buck. good thing is you don't have to return it. bad thing is you can't return it if it's not a good copy πŸ™‚

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