Sunday, February 24, 2013

My Oscar Predictions... And then my fantasy Oscar wins...

I'm not a huge fan of the Academy Awards. Same as the Emmys and Grammys, it's largely a ceremony based on personal politics and an inner circle of friends, rather than legitimate recognition for a nationwide plethora of significant achievements in cinema.
But because it's movies, I might watch it. I've been slacking a bit on the last Oscar ceremony (I didn't see it - I called that The Artist would win everything and Hugo would win everything else). I'm returning to watching the Oscars this year with the promise of pizza from a friend.
So there's an incentive.
Since I haven't posted in a while (work and a writing project I took on and school) and it's finally relevant, I figure it's time to talk the big golden guy again.


Best Picture: If Argo does not win Best Picture this year, I will be very surprised. It's certainly a sympathy vote for Ben Affleck's Best Director snub and everybody loves it, so why not? If Argo doesn't win, Silver Linings Playbook will. It's 2012's Slumdog Millionaire - a feel-good Oscar contender that everybody surprisingly loved without feeling manipulated.
But this is actually another year where none of the Best Picture nominees really feel worthy to me. They are all good, but sort of lacking that final dimension that makes a film a classic.
If I had to pick a nominee I want to win, it'd be Lincoln. That movie was outstanding. Zero Dark Thirty was fantastic as well.

Best Director: This is something I can't really predict confidently. My best guess is for David O. Russell with Silver Linings Playbook, but I really think a bone should be thrown to Ang Lee for Life of Pi. It may not have been a perfect movie, but damn if it didn't take skill to make it.

Best Actor/Actress/Supp. Actor/Supp. Actress: If there is any fucking justice in the world, The Master will sweep those Acting awards - Joaquin Phoenix and Phillip Seymour Hoffman were forces to be reckoned with, but that won't happen because the Academy loves a good Daniel Day-Lewis performance and that happened in Lincoln. Jennifer Lawrence is a sure-fire winner for Silver Linings Playbook and that's fine, she deserved it, although I wouldn't mind if everybody else nominated in the Best Actress category won. Emmanuelle Riva, Quevenzhane Wallis and Naomi Watts put out for their roles (Jessica Chastain was tolerable).
Anne Hathaway is also a shut case for Best Supporting Actress in Les Miserables, but I'm not very invested in that category, so go crazy, Annie. I can't predict whose going to win Best Supporting Actor, but I really hope they don't give it Christoph Waltz. He was good, but Leonardo DiCaprio (or Don Johnson or Samuel L. Jackson) deserved that nomination from Django Unchained. Waltz was good, but he was not Inglourious Basterds good. He was just trying to be Inglourious Basterds good.

Best Writing - Original/Adapted Screenplay: Silver Linings Playbook is going to win Adapted Screenplay, but my root is for Lincoln... Team of Rivals is a fantastic and thorough historical book and I recommend it to anybody interested in American History.
As for original screenplay, my vote is for Moonrise Kingdom, but I suspect Zero Dark Thirty and Amour are the primary contenders here.

Best Animated Feature: This is a rarity when the Pixar movie is a bit shaky in its possibility of winning and that's why I don't know who's going to win. But my favorite out of the nominees is sooooooo ParaNorman. Wreck-It Ralph probably has the best shot and that's cool, it was a very fun movie.

Best Foreign Language Film: My vote is for Amour and it's definitely going to win. I mean, it's nominated for Best Picture so... what more do you need? Palme D'or!

Best Documentary - Feature (have not seen the shorts): The only nominee I have seen is Searching for Sugar Man and so my vote for it to win is not so much that I think its the best out of the nominees, but that I really really liked it and would like to see get recognition as a work of cinema.
Watch it.

Best Animated Short Film (did not see the live action nominees): Again, the only nominee I saw was The Longest Daycare, out of my fandom for The Simpsons. I'm less enthusiastic in voting for it this time as I was with Searching for Sugar Man.

Best Original Score: I refuse to acknowledge this for not nominating Cloud Atlas. Fuck you.

Best Original Song: Oh, totally Adele's Skyfall. Gave me chills listening to it.

Best Production Design: Again, fuck you for not nominating Cloud Atlas. It would throw all these other nominees to the fucking ground. But my vote now is for The Hobbit - An Unexpected Journey or Life of Pi. At least these had some effort in their work...

Best Cinematography: Life of Pi has my vote.

Best Sound Editing: Zero Dark Thirty, end of story.

Best Sound Mixing: Is there a good reason Wreck-It Ralph is not nominated? What are you thinking, Academy?! Okay, whatever, fine, be stupid. My vote is for Argo instead. It'll probably win.

Best Makeup: Again, where is Cloud Atlas in the nominations, Academy? Eat a dick.

Best Costume Design: My vote is for Snow White and the Huntsman (do not mistake this for me liking that movie), but I'm guessing the winners will either be Les Miserables (more likely) or Lincoln.

Best Film Editing: My vote's for Zero Dark Thirty. If that doesn't win, Argo will.

Best Visual Effects: The lack of Cloud Atlas in the nominees for the millionth time deserves the Academy's consumption of all the fucking dicks. My vote is for Life of Pi. If that doesn't win, the winner will probably be The Hobbit - An Unexpected Journey. The Avengers is one of my favorite movies of the year, but it's not that special beyond run of the mill CGI (Iron Man's CGI effects were more spectacular), Prometheus had some pretty legit effects but Ridley's necessary evil usage of CGI was still kind of treacherous to the illusion and I laugh at the nomination of Snow White and the Huntsman.

So there we go... we'll see how close I came tonight at the televised Awards.

Saturday, February 2, 2013

John Dies at the End (Coscarelli, 2012) and The Amazing Spider-Man (Webb, 2012) - Two Films I Really Tried to Like...

In 2012, I didn't really have many movies I was looking forward to. I had taken to watching more classics and oldies than looking out for any coming attractions. I was surprised to realize that Ben Affleck and Paul Thomas Anderson came out with new movies, though I jumped on them immediately. I was not excited about The Avengers as such a concept of a film sounded unwieldy (though I was pleasantly surprised upon seeing the movie) and The Dark Knight Rises as I knew the movie would not be worth the hype that occurs. In fact, the upcoming Spider-Man reboot was the only movie I had expectations for. I thought it was way too soon to do a movie on the Osama bin Laden search, despite being under the direction of Kathryn Bigelow. And although I had been following Rian Johnson and Joseph Gordon-Levitt's next collaboration after Brick, Looper was not a movie that I was going to rush to see if I had no time.

The only three movies I was legitimately anticipating were two movies whose pre-production and production I had been following out of rabid fandom: Prometheus (out of my rabid fandom for Alien), Django Unchained (out of my Tarantino fandom) and a movie I had been surprised to find was being made... John Dies at the End.

My expectations to John Dies at the End were foolish. I won't say it was a bad movie, but Don Coscarelli, a director whose made movies I have undying love for like Phantasm, Bubba Ho-Tep and Incident On and Off a Mountain Road, is a guy who can only make movies that are good enough. Not great, not fantastic, but good enough to pass off the story and maybe have a bit of style and humor to it. It's a result that probably has to do with unwieldy yet ambitious production and budget problems. Coscarelli is probably at best a more independent Terry Gilliam without the reputation.

It may work for the other films, but when reading the original book by David Wong, John Dies at the End is a tale that requires larger than life, fantastic elements. It's a tale about two guys basically finding a gateway to a darker world through a drug. You cannot just half-ass that. The Coscarelli humor is somewhat adequate, but it's not the humor of the book - the absurdity, the banality, the true invincibility of the titular character's jackassery.
At the same time, it has to be legitimately frightening. It's part of the atmosphere. It can't be hallucinatory, because the things David and John encounter are real. The threat is real, not in the mind.
And the bigger thing is just that the story is more serial-esque but with an arc. If anything, it fits more as a TV series, but how do you really pitch such a series?
Very small changes are forgivable, a dog who is the central character of the story has been changed in sex and renamed to a punny 'Bark Lee'. A significant battle in the Luxor casino at Las Vegas has been removed - disappointing but understandable because of budget.
Other changes are pretty hurtful... They take out a huge twist in the story that defines the book, they made the lead female character Amy more of a love interest than anything else and there ARE NO CHAIR JOKES!!!! None!!!

These are not story changes that Coscarelli should take all the blame for himself, but David Wong as well, who has taken responsibility and explained why he insisted on the changes from book to movie. I'm only having a problem with it due to my attachment to the book to be honest.

As a strength to the movie, even though they had less time to flesh out the lead characters of David and John, the actors who played them really understood who they were. I didn't feel like I was watching an attempt at recreating David and John, I felt like I was actually watching David and John.

My advice to those interested: Watch the movie and then read the book if you liked the movie. You won't be as disappointed with the movie as I was if you read the book after the fact and it will really fill in the details for a lot of other things that had to be shortened for movie's length.

Now get ready, because a rant is about to ensue...

The Amazing Spider-Man on the other hand, I was initially disappointed. I was intrigued by the idea of a new Spider-Man film and was intent on seeing it. When I first saw it, I thought it was whatever, but not a terrible movie. But the reviews came in, lower than the first two Spider-Man films, but higher than the terrible Spider-Man 3. And all my friends were seeming to like it. And then, they started saying the movie was better than Raimi's trilogy - they started claiming Raimi's trilogy always sucked. Nevermind the sudden internet about-face, I thought there was nothing spectacularly good or bad about the Amazing Spider-Man. But I figured, I'd give it another shot... I'd see if I could catch what I was supposed to be missing and they were catching.

The Amazing Spider-Man is not just an overhyped movie, it's a very bad movie. There's in actuality, after watching it again and again, nothing whatsoever of cinematic merit in it. My attempt to watch it again to find the good in it backfired. I only found more bad. 

I've had times when I went against the public opinion to not like a popular movie... I was not a fan of Crash, Transformers (albeit the 2nd and 3rd movies were bad and everyone knew it) or a good portion of Tim Burton's work (though I have lightened up on him)... But I understood there was at least some merit in these films that allowed for their legacy, even The Dark Knight Rises. The Amazing Spider-Man does not have that. At all. It does not have anything of quality in it. There has never been another time I was so certain people were eating up shit since The Walking Dead TV series started and everybody claimed it was the best show ever made.

So, let me start with the obvious...
1) The most underdeveloped romantic story I've seen in films. I haven't seen From Justin to Kelly or Gigli yet, and I have no intention to, so I'll be fair and not say it's THE most underdeveloped romance in all films but giggling and staring at each other does not constitute chemistry.
2) Peter Parker is a brooder all around the movie. Before Uncle Ben even dies, he's brooding like a punk. People all around me say that this is the Spider-Man they've been waiting for, but that's not Spider-Man. They say Spider-Man has to be an asshole, Spider-Man has to make jokes...

Look, Spider-Man is not Spider-Man because he makes jokes. If you get mad, Raimi's Spider-Man didn't make jokes, you may as well be mad at Christopher Nolan's Batman because he didn't do that Dracula thing he always does with his cape...

Pictured: That Dracula Thing... I can English!
You know what makes Spider-Man Spider-Man? The fact that he's not an asshole. The fact that he legitimately means well everytime. He's human with faults, but Uncle Ben taught him to be a better person and his death spurs him into taking on hefty responsibility in life. He doesn't love his life, but he doesn't brood 24/7. A gritty Spider-Man would not work, just as a gritty Fantastic Four does not work. Peter Parker's a legitimately good guy who wants to do the right thing.
Anybody who claim Spider-Man is an asshole or his only defining feature in persona is his smartassery (which is done to offset the weight he feels put under)... These people don't know what they're talking about at all.

Andrew Garfield and Emma Stone, in my opinion, are better actors that Tobey Maguire and Kirsten Dunst... But man, Andrew Garfield's acting in this film, he made me want to punch Peter. Every damn time... they barely glance over his scientific knowledge and they make him look like a modern Edward Cullen.

3. The story was rushed. The origin was rushed, Flash Thompson was inconsistent in his treatment of Peter, the chase for Ben's killer went nowhere, the romance was rushed... and when they killed Captain Stacy, I just went 'Wow, that already happened?'... Then, I look at who wrote the script and I figure out why... James Vanderbilt: his portfolio does not seem to understand development or pacing. Zodiac is the one credit that actually seemed satisfactory. Alvin Sargent wrote all Spider-Man scripts... that's fine whatever, but he made mistakes too. And Steve Kloves wrote the Harry Potter films... which I despise with a passion for their lack of understanding how to properly adapt works of literature into cinema (Granted, I really really love the books, like anybody who grew up reading them, and I have a warm reception towards the movie of Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban - So, I'm not anti-Harry Potter at all).

The Amazing Spider-Man could've went into places Raimi never went to, it could've brought new life to the comic book film, but instead it played out as a lifeless script treatment of a high school drama. 

The biggest gripe I have is with what The Amazing Spider-Man claimed they were bringing to the table turned out to be absolutely empty promises. Norman Osborn's disappearance was laughably obvious by the sudden showcase of the shadowy bust they had in the OsCorp tour.

Are you fucking kidding me? Is that a whole obnoxious 'I'm gonna deliberately not show you the face because I want to be incredibly mysterious as a picture' instead of being unassuming about the whole deal and letting the ambiguity flow naturally?

Curt Conners' transformation into the Lizard was actually a well-treated part of the story, particularly with his being ridden on by Irfan Khan's character, but then his whole plan to flood the city with that mutation cloud was once again, worse than the more cliche comic book villain schemes I've seen since I was a child... At least the Green Goblin, despite a bad design, had a personal vendetta with everyone he targeted.
The worst part, the biggest crime, was the sudden focus on the parents. There's three reasons why it was absolutely appalling to use.

1) They don't say anything about his parents. They act like they're a big part of the story, but by the end of the movie, nothing is known about them except Richard worked for OsCorp with Connors. Nothing jaw-dropping out of that. Then they make the mid-credit scene in prison to laugh at us, teasing like they have more to say... when there was nothing said to begin with. By the end of the movie, I polled all of my friends who loved The Amazing Spider-Man (ie. Everyone who saw it for some reason - including my brother who I saw it with) to name the parents of Peter Parker. Half of them were able to name Richard as the father, nobody except one guy could name Mary as the mother.

2) It doesn't matter. It just doesn't. Richard and Mary Parker left Peter's life and they never returned and it never affected Peter in the comics (it had weight in the Ultimate Spider-Man universe, but never so severe). For all intents and purposes, Ben and May Parker are Peter's parental figures. They were the ones who shaped Peter into the man he became, not his parents... which leads me to the third reason.

American Gothic... it is not.

3) They downplayed Ben and May's role at this point. Their importance to Peter's life was absolutely nullified. Instead of feeling the pull I felt when I saw Ben die in 2002's Spider-Man, I instead thought 'Huh, they shot him already?' in 2012's The Amazing Spider-Man.

It was an bloodless picture that thought just from its exi
stence it was going to change the Spider-Man game the way Batman Begins did to the Batman game and instead, it came off as movie that was all the bad parts of the Ultimate universe and the Harry Potter stories. It was created only to make money and retain the Spider-Man copyright for Sony Pictures and everybody fell for it and ate it up. It's very insulting to the intelligence of the audience because it's obvious they half-assed this movie.

At this point, it goes far beyond I just don't like The Amazing Spider-Man. It goes far beyond Raimi's Spider-Man 1 and 2 being my favorite movies. I'm trying to avoid comparison. 
I'm making a certainly childish move to a degree, but one I feel completely justified in... The Amazing Spider-Man was a bad movie. A very bad movie. It has it's hype phenomenon going for it, solely because it's the new version... Everybody's going to eat it up because they like teenage angst and think it equals cinematic emotion. I'm that guy trying to explain that Soylent Green is people and whatever... I'll be the pariah, but everybody's wrong if they say there's something of quality in The Amazing Spider-Man.
I will forever fight this until it dies down.
It's not like you can say The Amazing Spider-Man was more accurate to the comics - that's not the case. In fact, it goes a lot backwards in comic book accuracy than forwards or makes the same leaps that Spider-Man made. The only accuracy added was the web-slinging device. That's one item of accurate delivery and even then, Parker steals it in TAS as opposed to building it.
You certainly can't say it's because it's the Untold Story. It wasn't. It wasn't everything told in Spider-Man as an origin.

At least John Dies at the End was funny.

Wait, no, The Amazing Spider-Man was better because 3D!
EDIT: So, I just read that the sequel to The Amazing Spider-Man will feature Jamie Foxx as Electro and possibly Paul Giamatti as Rhino. DEAR ODIN, this series fucking reeks of stunt casting - Martin Sheen, Sally Field, Denis Leary, C. Thomas Howell, Irfan Khan, Rhys Ifans and now this... this is only done to use big-name stars without respect for character.

Okay, I'm done now, I promise.

20 Years of Cinema-Watching Part 5 - A Whole Lotta Favorite Characters

So, I can't pick just 20 favorite characters. I just can't. It cannot be done. Many of them are from the same film. It was tough enough to choose select characters from stuff like Star Wars, Back to the Future and The Big Lebowski. In fact, I had read a blog that had indeed said fuck it and added the entire cast for The Big Lebowski and Glengarry Glen Ross (while I don't feel the same sentiment for the latter, if I could and had all the time I would definitely put the entire cast of the former).
It was tough enough to narrow those. You ask me cut down and I'll cut something else, I promise you...

...Now that that mental breakdown is behind me, I will begin explaining about this... I didn't just want to make this unorganized... Especially when I was afraid this was going to end upwards of 100... I can't tell, I don't want to count. I'm too scared. So I grouped them in a very cliche and gimmicky manner, but one that would be somewhat satisfying to read this list by. I mean, yea, this good and bad thing sounds a bit... mocky... like Donnie Darko says in that 'Fear and Love' moment... You can't just group things like that, there is more to these characters than meets the eye. I'm certain I've made a couple of mistakes in this struggle of categorization.

And that's part of the beauty of these types of characters. I regret that I only credit the director and whatever or whomever was portraying the characters listed, but it's the entirety of the movie's effect that builds up the best characters... like the editing, the make-up, the writing, the backdrop... The mood, the atmosphere, the character is ethereal, it's a part of this world we inhabit... he or she can't exist outside of it, so we emulate what we love to take it's example into perspective or fight the little signs and reminders so the horrors aren't re-enacted.

In the end... I'm basically saying I really love movie characters. I like paying attention more to movie characters and visuals than I do the plot. So what, big whup, wanna fight about it?

THE GOOD 'A man oughta do what he thinks is best...' -Hondo
When a moral center occurs in a story, it's a comfort. He doesn't have to be perfect entirely. He just has to have his or her heart in the right place. Maybe the right guy in the wrong place. Maybe a person who holds at least one thing close to the chest, if only to keep the world intact in their lifetime. No matter why, the end result is the same. These are the brave ones. And they let us know others in the world can be brave.

Ellen Ripley (Sigourney Weaver) from Aliens (Cameron, 1986)

John Milner (Paul Le Mat) from American Graffiti (Lucas, 1973)

Jim Malone (Sean Connery) from The Untouchables (De Palma, 1987)

Princess Leia Organa (Carrie Fisher) from Star Wars (Lucas, 1977)

Han Solo (Harrison Ford) from Star Wars (Lucas, 1977)

Obi-Wan Kenobi (Ewan McGregor) from Star Wars: Episode III - Revenge of the Sith (Lucas, 2005)

Jeff 'The Dude' Lebowski (Jeff Bridges) from The Big Lebowski (Coen/Coen, 1998)*THIS IS MY FAVORITE MOVIE CHARACTER OF ALL TIME

Rick O'Connell (Brendan Fraser) from The Mummy (Sommers, 1999)

Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr.) from Iron Man (Favreau, 2008)

Clementine Kruczynski (Kate Winslet) from Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind (Gondry, 2004)

Bob Harris (Bill Murray) and Charlotte (Scarlett Johansson) from Lost in Translation (Coppola, 2003)

Spike (animated character) from The Land Before Time (Bluth, 1989)

Frank Serpico (Al Pacino) from Serpico (Lumet, 1973)

H.I. McDunnough (Nicholas Cage) from Raising Arizona (Coen/Coen, 1987)

Jake (John Belushi) and Elwood (Dan Akroyd) Blues in The Blues Brothers (Landis, 1980)

The Prospector (Charles Chaplin) from The Gold Rush (Chaplin, 1925)

Indiana Jones (Harrison Ford) from Raiders of the Lost Ark (Spielberg, 1981)

Jack Burton (Kurt Russell) from Big Trouble in Little China (Carpenter, 1986)

George Bailey (Jimmy Stewart) from It's a Wonderful Life (Capra, 1946)

Father Damien Karras (Jason Miller) from The Exorcist (Friedkin, 1973)

Agent Clarice Starling (Jodie Foster) from The Silence of the Lambs (Demme, 1991)

Karl Childers (Billy Bob Thornton) from Sling Blade (Thornton, 1996)

Annie Hall (Diane Keaton) from Annie Hall (Allen, 1977)

Fezzik (Andre the Giant) from The Princess Bride (Reiner, 1987)

WALL-E (Voiced by Ben Burtt) from WALL-E (Stanton, 2008)

Eric Draven (Brandon Lee) from The Crow (Proyas, 1994)

Gandalf the Grey (Ian McKellan) from The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring (Jackson, 2001)

William Munny (Clint Eastwood) from Unforgiven (Eastwood, 1992)

John McClane (Bruce Willis) from Die Hard (McTiernan, 1988)

THE BAD 'Do you know what "nemesis" means? A righteous infliction of retribution manifested by an appropriate agent. Personified in this case by an horrible cunt. Me. -Snatch.
Self-indulgent. Aggressive. Violent. Distant. Not exclusively bad traits, we all have our flaws. But what you do with yourself is what really defines you. You could be a man who has no care or value for others lives, indiscriminately raping and maiming and killing. You could be a harbinger of chaos. You could get away with it. But there's no denying what your affiliation is... It's nature.

Darth Vader (David Prowse; Voiced by James Earl Jones) from Star Wars (Lucas, 1977)

Dr. Septimus Pretorius (Ernest Thesinger) from The Bride of Frankenstein (Whale, 1935)

Vincenzo Coccoti (Christopher Walken) from True Romance (Scott, 1993)

Anton Chigurh (Javier Bardem) from No Country for Old Men (Coen/Coen, 2007)

Biff Tannen (Thomas F. Wilson) from Back to the Future (Zemeckis, 1985)

Jack Torrance (Jack Nicholson) from The Shining (Kubrick, 1980)

Brick Top (Alan Ford) from Snatch. (Ritchie, 2000)

Lloyd (Joe Turkel) from The Shining (Kubrick, 1980)

David Lo Pan (James Hong) from Big Trouble in Little China (Carpenter, 1986)

Michael Corleone (Al Pacino) from The Godfather Part II (Coppola, 1974)

Mr. Pink (Steve Buscemi) from Reservoir Dogs (Tarantino, 1992)

Alain Charnier (Fernando Rey) from The French Connection (Friedkin, 1971)

Judge Doom (Christopher Lloyd) from Who Framed Roger Rabbit (Zemeckis, 1988)

Alex De Large (Malcolm McDowell) from A Clockwork Orange (Kubrick, 1971)

Jake La Motta (Robert De Niro) from Raging Bull (Scorsese, 1980)

Elliot Blitzer (Bronson Pinchot) from True Romance (Scott, 1993)

Amon Goeth (Ralph Fiennes) from Schindler's List (Spielberg, 1993)

Tommy De Vito (Joe Pesci) from Goodfellas (Scorsese, 1990)

Frank Booth (Dennis Hopper) from Blue Velvet (Lynch, 1986)

The Collector (Billy Zane) from Tales from the Crypt Presents Demon Knight (Dickerson, 1995)

Tony Montana (Al Pacino) from Scarface (De Palma, 1983)

Harry Lime (Orson Welles) from The Third Man (Reed, 1949)

Hans Gruber (Alan Rickman) from Die Hard (McTiernan, 1988)

Count Olaf (Jim Carrey) from Lemony Snicket's A Series of Unfortunate Events (Silberling, 2004)

The Wicked Witch of the West (Margaret Hamilton) from The Wizard of Oz (Fleming/Cukor, 1939)

The T-800 (Arnold Schwarzenegger) from The Terminator (Cameron, 1984)

Carrie White (Sissy Spacek) from Carrie (De Palma, 1976)

The Stay-Puft Marshmallow Man (... Puppets?) from Ghostbusters (Reitman, 1984)

Norman Bates (Anthony Perkins) from Psycho (Hitchcock, 1960)

HAL-9000 (Voiced by Douglas Rain) from 2001: A Space Odyssey (Kubrick, 1968)

Cody Jarrett (James Cagney) from White Heat (Walsh, 1949)

Leslie Vernon (Nathan Baesel) from Behind the Mask: The Rise of Leslie Vernon (Glosserman, 2006)

THE GRAY 'You sure you're on the right side?' -X-Men
Sometimes it's a struggle to really choose between right and wrong. It's hard to tell what's best for us, because by the end of the day, we want to know what's good for the soul and what's good for our health... Since it's a more internal struggle involving ambition, thought, restraint and so many other things that aren't easily visual, it's a lot harder to understand characters like these. But we roll with it and come along for the ride... mostly...

Travis Bickle (Robert De Niro) from Taxi Driver (Scorsese, 1976)** THIS IS MY FAVORITE PERFORMANCE IN A MOVIE

Mickey O'Neil (Brad Pitt) from Snatch. (Guy Ritchie, 2000)

The Writer (Patrick Magee) from A Clockwork Orange (Kubrick, 1971)

Tuco (Eli Wallach) from The Good, the Bad and the Ugly (Leone, 1966)

George Hanson (Jack Nicholson) from Easy Rider (Hopper, 1969)

Sanjuro Kuwabatake (Toshiro Mifune) from Yojimbo (Kurosawa, 1961)

Roy Batty (Rutger Hauer) from Blade Runner (Scott, 1982)

Dr. Henry Frankenstein (Colin Clive) from Frankenstein (Whale, 1931)

The Bride (Uma Thurman) from Kill Bill (Tarantino, 2003/2004)

Mark Zuckerberg (Jesse Eisenberg) from The Social Network (Fincher, 2010)

Jessica Rabbit (Voiced by Kathleen Turner) from Who Framed Roger Rabbit (Zemeckis, 1988)

Seth Gecko (George Clooney) from From Dusk till Dawn (Rodriguez, 1996)

Hugo Stiglitz (Til Schweiger) from Inglourious Basterds (Tarantino, 2009)

Randy 'The Ram' Robinson (Mickey Rourke) from The Wrestler (Aronofsky, 2008)

Max Fischer (Jason Schwartzmann) from Rushmore (Anderson, 1998)

Scarlett O'Hara (Vivien Leigh) from Gone with the Wind (Fleming/Cukor, 1939)

Gunnery Sergeant Hartman (R. Lee Ermey) from Full Metal Jacket (Kubrick, 1987)

Blondie (Clint Eastwood) from The Good, the Bad and the Ugly

T.E. Lawrence (Peter O'Toole) from Lawrence of Arabia (Lean, 1962)

Diane Selwyn/Betty Elms (Naomi Watts) from Mulholland Dr. (Lynch, 2001)

Jon Osterman/Dr. Manhattan (Bill Crudup) from Watchmen (Snyder, 2009)
Actually he's more blue than gray...
... Couldn't resist

Hesher (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) from Hesher (Susser, 2010)

Richard B. Riddick (Vin Diesel) from The Chronicles of Riddick (Twohy, 2004)

Malcolm X (Denzel Washington) from Malcolm X (Lee, 1992)

THE WEIRD 'You met me at a very strange time in my life' -Fight Club
Sometimes, it's a tiresome effort to imagine what goes in the minds of people around us. Maybe they amuse, maybe they horrify us, maybe they fascinate us in the more extraordinary fashion. This genuine and gem-like ambiguity of our peers, when adapted to cinema in a seamless and unforced manner, create the richest of characters.

Quint (Robert Shaw) from Jaws (Spielberg, 1975)

The Jesus (John Turturro) from The Big Lebowski (Coen/Coen, 1998)

Da Mayor (Ossie Davis) from Do the Right Thing (Lee, 1989)

Walter Sobchak (John Goodman) from The Big Lebowski (Coen/Coen, 1998)

Tyler Durden (Brad Pitt) from Fight Club (Fincher, 1999)

Borat Sagdiyev (Sacha Baron Cohen) from Borat: Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan (Charles, 2006)

Elvis Presley (Bruce Campbell) from Bubba Ho-Tep (Coscarelli, 2002)

River Tam (Summer Glau) from Serenity (Whedon, 2005)

Steve 'Stevo' Levy (Matthew Lillard) from SLC Punk! (Merendino, 1998)

Doc Emmett Brown (Christopher Lloyd) from Back to the Future (Zemeckis, 1985)

David Byrne from Stop Making Sense (Demme, 1984)

Dr. Herbert West (Jeffrey Combs) from Re-Animator (Gordon, 1985)

Winston Wolf (Harvey Keitel) from Pulp Fiction (Tarantino, 1994)

Ashley J. Williams (Bruce Campbell) from Evil Dead II (Raimi, 1987)

THE UGLY 'You are one ugly motherfucker....' -Predator
A tribute and tip of the hat to the monsters, the make-up, the special effects that paste expression into the beasts we see, haunt our nightmares and bring to life an imagination we thought would die easy...

Kong (Stop-Motion Designed by Willis O'Brien) from King Kong (Cooper/Schoedsack, 1933)

Chewbacca (Peter Mayhew) from Star Wars (Lucas, 1977)

C-3PO (Anthony Daniels) and R2-D2 (Kenny Baker; Voiced by Ben Burtt) from Star Wars (Lucas, 1977)

Freddy Krueger (Robert Englund) from A Nightmare on Elm Street (Craven, 1984)

Dr. Satan (Walter Phelan) from House of 1000 Corpses (Zombie, 2004)

The T-Rex (CGI) from Jurassic Park (Spielberg, 1993)

Bruce (Animatronic Designed by Joe Alves) from Jaws (Spielberg, 1975)

Count Orlock (Max Schreck) from Nosferatu, Eine Symphonie des Grauens (Murnau, 1922)

The Xenomorph (Bolaji Badejo) from Alien (Scott, 1979)

The Monster (Boris Karloff) from Frankenstein (Whale, 1931)

The Monster's Bride (Elsa Lanchester) from The Bride of Frankenstein (Whale, 1935)

Marv (Mickey Rourke) from Sin City (Rodriguez/Miller, 2005)

The Monster (CGI) from The Host (Bong, 2006)

The Thing (Animatronics and I don't know all the fucking people who portray the creature, that's why he's scary!) from The Thing (Carpenter, 1982)

And that's all for now... I may or not indulge myself in an extra list of regrettable omissions...
Too OCD like that...