Thursday, August 02, 2012

1974 in film

948 movies.  As best I can tell from doing film rankings on Flickchart, that's how many movies I have seen in my lifetime.  At approximately two hours a movie, that's 79 days of 24/7 viewing that I've done in my lifetime.  And that's assuming that I only saw each movie one time which, frankly, we all know isn't the case.  Therefore, the theme of the blog today and for the next month is counting down my favorite movies.  One daily entry for each year I've been around, my five favorite movies of each year counted down and with clips.

#5 - The Man With The Golden Gun: In general, I find most of the Roger Moore 007 movies to be silly with too much of an emphasis on gadgets.  However, Christopher Lee as Scaramanga is one of the best Bond villians and Britt Ekland is certainly easy on the eyes.  

#4 - Young Frankenstein: 1974 was a pretty solid year for Mel Brooks, with both this and Blazing Saddle coming out within ten months of each other.  I have two favorite bits of trivia regarding this film.  The first is that most of the laboratory equipment seen in the movie is the exact same equipment used in the famous Boris Karloff version of Frankenstein.  Second is that Aerosmith went to see the film and got the idea to name their iconic song "Walk This Way" from a gag in the movie.

#3 - Monty Python and The Holy Grail: There's two types of people in this world, I'm convinced.  Those who get Monty Python's dry British humor, and those who don't.  So absurd, but so damn funny.

#2 - Blazing Saddles: Maybe the most politically incorrect movie in history and one I'm not sure could even get made today.  Clevon Little did a great job as the sheriff but there's still a part of me that wishes Mel Brooks had gotten his first choice--Richard Pryor.  This might be my single favorite delivery of a comic line ever.

#1 - The Godfather Part II: It seems ridiculous in hindsight, but this film wasn't supposed to work.  Sequels were extremely rare and almost always flops before this masterpiece.  Jumping around in time from 1901 to 1958 to 1917 and carrying on multiple story lines was going to be too confusing for the audience.  The story had been told in epic fashion and anything else was going to be a redundancy.  Well, so much for conventional wisdom.


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