There’s been a little controversy over some particular flicks popping up on Flickchart for ranking. Some users seem to figure that Flickchart is a bit too liberal in the material it approves for ranking. WWE wrestling specials? Pixar animated shorts? Television pilot episodes? Looney Tunes? Captain EO?
Well, it all started there, didn’t it? Captain EO is a “4-D” film that debuted in Walt Disney theme parks in 1986 and ran there exclusively through the ’90s. The 17-minute sci-fi film (at the time, the most expensive movie ever made on a per-minute basis) starred Michael Jackson, and was essentially a giant music video with 3-D imagery, flashing lights and plenty of smoke. Following Jackson’s death, the film made a return to Disney parks in 2010, but it has never had a theatrical release.
‘Tis the season for cinephiles to be watching their holiday favorites. TV stations are airing the usual array of heartwarming holiday classics around the clock. Most of you will be watching the traditional Christmas fare. Whether it’s the touching morality fables like ‘It’s a Wonderful Life’ or the nostalgic Rankin/Bass animations, everyone has their can’t miss holiday movie. Here in the ‘Depths of Obscurity’, I like to buck the traditional fare, dig deep into the well of long-forgotten films, and maybe start some new Christmas traditions.
In this very special holiday edition of Depths of Obscurity, I’m going to do things a little bit differently. Normally I pick one specific filter, then watch and rank every film on that list. This time around I found that method too limiting and instead opted to go with five films that span the gamut of obscurity, from overlooked classics from the 40’s to low grade B slasher flicks from the 2000’s. Each film is from a different decade, and has a distinctly different genre. My one rule was that they had to be a holiday film and be virtually invisible on Flickchart, which I defined as having a ranking of 10,000 or lower.
By now, we’ve all had a good chuckle at the leaked Paramount memo showcasing the studio’s terrible slate of upcoming projects, including kiddie caper comedy Dunderheads and the criminally unnecessary Zoolander 2. Funny stuff, for sure, but I can’t help feel a tad slighted by this document’s instant popularity. After all, I’ve been coming up with shitty film ideas on my Twitter account, @MoviesIWannaSee, for almost a year now! Are you really gonna sit there and tell me my idea for a Jake Gyllenhaal Woodsy Owl biopic isn’t as hilariously stupid as Baywatch: The Movie? That’s cold.
To try and help remind people that I am the original shitty movie machine, I’ve compiled a brand new special list for Flickchart of wretched cinematic visions I honestly hope come to pass in my lifetime. Hopefully you Flickcharters will enjoy this selection of ideas, but honestly I’m hoping more that someone from Paramount accidentally reads this between cocaine snorts off the ol’ iPad and gives me a development deal. Fingers crossed!
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One was from a relatively young writer and director just hitting his stride. The other came from a seasoned pro, who had already given us some of the best films of all time. Drawing on a rich history of the real life mafioso’s exploits, these two films brought the stories, the characters, and the culture to life in a way that we had never seen before. The first had dazzling scope and a romanticized edge that almost glorified the ugliness despite its startlingly realistic violence. It captured the essence of some real-life mobsters, while adding a touch of glamour to the family business. The second stripped down that image and showed a raw, intense portrayal of street thug losers, who longed for the big time and would resort to ruthless, savage tactics to get there. In reality, their world was an unapologetically ugly one, but no less captivating. Talk to any film aficionado, and he or she will count both among the all-time greatest. But how do they fare against one another in the Reel Rumbles ring? It’s time to find out. So grab another cannoli, snuggle up to the fishes, and prepare to get whacked, it’s time for The Godfather vs. Goodfellas.