April 27, 2014
I got a decent amount of sight-seeing done on this trip, so I'm looking forward to concentrating a bit more on the actual festival when I go back. I saw eight films total which I think is pretty pale in comparison to most festival-goers. I think even all of my friends saw more movies than I did (I can't blame sight-seeing for that though, I just overslept every morning. And skipped one movie for a mid-day nap. oops!)
The first movie that I saw at the festival was The World of Henry Orient with Paula Prentiss in attendance! I've seen it before but I don't remember finding it as funny as I did this time. The film is about two teenagers who stalk a pianist around New York City. The teen girls have a very Mary Clancy-Rachel Devery dynamic, with one kooky adventurous troublemaker and her slightly-less kooky stooge. The pianist was played by Peter Sellers. If you think he's usually too over-the-top, in this movie he is not. If you think he's perfectly lovely in his other movies, in this one he's just as awesome but a little toned down. Either way, he's brilliant. And his love interest is a nervous, paranoid married lady played by Paula Prentiss.
Do you ever think that somebody's acting is just SO funny that laughing doesn't seem like a sufficent expression of how joyful they make you feel? I wanted to invent a new form of comedic appreciation for how funny Paula Prentiss was in this movie. The movie is available on amazon instant watch here.
This is just an awesome mural that I saw on Hollywood Blvd.
The second movie that I saw was Invasion of the Body Snatchers. My dad is a big fan of 1950's science fiction movies so I knew he'd disown me if I didn't go see it, lol ;) In all seriousness, though, I love me a 50's sci-fi too, and I was pretty excited about seeing this one on the big screen!
I've been to quite a few classic film screenings at repertory theaters and so many times I've been disappointed and annoyed by how many people in the audience laugh at things that aren't funny. I assumed that most people coming to this festival would probably be more respectful, but I was still very apprehensive seeing a movie like this in a theater. Thankfully, the audience was amazing. Nobody laughed, except at lines that were obviously intended to trigger a giggle. The credits were met with applause, and you could hear a pin drop when the movie was playing, it was so quiet. I wish that every movie-going experience could be like this one! The movie is available on amazon instant watch here.
The next movie that I saw was a midnight screening of David Lynch's Eraserhead.
This is me, Millie and Sarah pre-Eraserhead.
This is Sarah, Millie and me post-Eraserhead.
I'm a big fan of Twin Peaks and Blue Velvet so I thought -- yay! David Lynch! I'm in! But this was much more disturbing than I could have imagined. I don't even know how David Lynch imagined it. I'm not sure I can even really describe it? It starts out having a semblance of a plot -- a man finds out his girlfriend is having a baby and they get married. At dinner with his girlfriend's parents he cuts into a cornish hen and the little chicken starts convulsing and oozing a thick liquid. Later on, the baby (which looks kind of like an alien/hairless horse hybrid?) is just constantly crying, in a pitch that lies somewhere on the border between a human infant and a velociraptor. Large worms shaped like pieces of funnel cake start falling from the sky and slithering around. A head explodes.
I'm sure that its reputation as a cinematic masterpiece is apt and I'm just missing something -- I generally try to have an open mind about movies, even disturbing ones, but I just didn't get it. I had a lot of fun attending the midnight screening with my friends, though, and it's going to be a lifelong memory, for sure. Not my favorite movie of the festival though, ha! It's available on amazon instant watch here.
April 19, 2014
The first day was pretty amazing. My friends and I have known each other for five years but this was our first time getting together as a group. We've been discussing it ever since we met, dreaming about our "five year epic meetup" but I think all of us were doubtful that it would ever actually happen. We all have busy lives and the thought that everyone would be able to drop what they're doing for a week to meet at the same time seemed so unlikely! But when the TCM Film Festival idea came up, we all jumped on board. We originally met through our classic film blogs and it was just SO fitting.
Left to right: Millie, Me, Nicole, Sarah, Casey
On our first day we went out to eat at a cute little restaurant and then split up temporarily. Casey got to go to a really cool TCM social networking party, and the rest of us played typical tourists on Hollywood Blvd. I majorly freaked out at Grauman's Chinese Theater. I've been dreaming about seeing Frank Sinatra's handprints since I was thirteen, so that was beyond exciting for me. (That's me with Frank's prints in the picture at the top.)
Some of the highlights of the trip were seeing Alec Baldwin in person (Jack Donaghy!) falling in love with The Beatles at the Hard Day's Night screening, seeing my all time favorite movie, Sunday in New York, on the big screen (I wept with happiness, omg!), two midnight screenings (I've been trying to get people to go to midnight movies with me forever and nobody ever wants to do it with me!), late night chats with Millie, and I finally got to go to Disneyland!! At the end of the trip I also got to meet up with Danielle and Diana, too! All in all this was one of the best weeks of my whole life. I can't possibly fit everything in one post so I'm going to break it up by day.