Wednesday, March 24, 2010
Late Night Movies
When I was growing up, movies were a big influence on my imagination. Back then, instead of late night talk, there were late night movies on at least one and sometimes several of the network channels. With school, it was not possible to see all the movies during the week but come the week-end, I stayed up, often with my father as he was a night owl due to working graveyard during the week.
Through those late nights, I was introduced (distantly) to Fred Astaire, Clark Gable, Rita Hayworth, Ava Gardner, Humphrey Bogart and a slew of other stars and types of films. There were good guys, bad guys, and generally you never had to wonder who each was. Even if Alan Ladd looked suspicious for awhile, eventually he would redeem himself. There was some security in that.
Today, the three main networks offer very few old movies, but there are cable stations dedicated to them. Many I have already seen at least once and sometimes more. I watch very little daytime television, but when the evening comes, because I am not into network programming, movies are an important part of the night-- although these days that night ends a little before 10. Thanks to DVDs, I can make it so.
Since I got started with Netflix, with their one at a time deal, I have a movie from them about every three days although I mix my choices liberally with documentaries as Netflix is a treasure chest of documentaries, the kind you'd never find elsewhere. Well you would if you were regularly keeping track of what was on History Channel, Discovery, Science, PBS, etc., but I am not; so these are generally new to me.
To be honest, my favorite movies are not heavy ones. I like to be entertained, and I do enough heavy lifting with what I think without using movies for more fodder. Generally I like my movies to be uplifting and make me feel good by the time it says The End. This month though I have tried a few different ones.
One was Zombieland. Now that's a film I'd normally never watch as it's horror... but kind of horror, like that which isn't real and is full of humor and action. If I hadn't received a recommendation from my daughter, and if it hadn't starred Woody Harrelson, I'd still likely have never seen it. I admit. I liked it. It's not a movie to improve your mind, not one to make you think deep thoughts. It's pure escapist fare of the type where no way would you want to go there.
Would I recommend it? Not unless you can handle make believe gore. If you can or if you, like me, look away at certain times, even when you know it's make-up, it's surprisingly a fun movie. It's not like a film I will be buying. I think it'd bother me sitting in my shelves.
Actually this whole blog is intended as an introduction more than a post of its own. It's about a movie from the 1980s that I had not seen then and put off seeing through the years until again someone recommended it and I got to thinking it's the kind of film I should see. Last week-end I did and the next three blogs will be about it. It was heavy with a lot of thinking to be stirred up even by its title. So coming next-- a three-part movie review.