ToC: Mad Max (1979), directed by George Miller

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By Jacob Slater

Poor Mel Gibson, things just haven’t been going his way for the last couple of years. After a couple of social faux-pas, including sexually harassing a female police officer after being pulled over for a DUI, claiming that Jews are responsible for all the wars in the world and telling his wife that she should be gangraped by a pack of racial epithets, his star in the Hollywood sky has dimmed considerably. I mean, when your most notable movie film role in recent memory is from Expendendables 3, which is itself notable for being three times shittier than the original, you know shit has turned south for all intents and purposes. You’d think that if you’re the kind of person who thinks a secret cabal of Jewish folk control Hollywood, you probably don’t want to accuse their people of being the basis for world conflict if you’re interested in job security. By the way, if any secret Jewish leader in the film industry is reading this, I totally have no problem with you guys running Hollywood. So if you just happened to have a movie deal or a full scholarship to film school or something just lying around, I’d be more than willing to take it off your hands for you. I also accept cash and money orders.

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ToC: Crumb (1994), directed by Terry Zwigoff

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By Jacob Slater

Despite what my writings on the T.O. and my oft-neglected film blog might imply, I actually do more than watch pro wrestling and movies. I’m more of an all-inclusive nerd, and there are many things that I spend my time on while I waste the precious hours of my life. Books, video games, theater, history, music, hardcore pornopgraphy,  and as is most relevant to this article, comic books. I’ve been reading comics/graphic novels since I was 12 or so, and I’ve always been fascinated with it as a medium for creative expression and the bizarre characters brought to life within its pages. Although I wouldn’t put myself on the level of my more serious comic book fan friends (check out my bud Alec Berry’s work to see a guy who thinks about the structure of comics far more than I do) I feel like I’ve read enough of the things over the years to know what I like and what I don’t on a somewhat critical level. Especially if it’s written by Alan Moore or Grant Morrison, in which case I’ll probably read it regardless of popular opinion.

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ToC: The Third Man (1949), directed by Carol Reed

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By Jacob Slater

If ever there was a man who not only defined the role of auteur director in the United States, but that of a career peaked too early, it’s Orson Welles. I mean, when your debut film is Citizen Kane, one of the most influential and well-regarded works in film history, the power of the sophomore slump becomes all too real. Not to mention being the mastermind behind the infamous War of the Worlds radio broadcast, being friends with H.G. Wells and Ernest Hemingway, and establishing himself as an A-list actor and director in one fell swoop. Which is quite the accomplishment by the way, I can’t think of many examples of great films that starred and were directed by the same person, much less on their debut movie. Aside from Yahoo Serious in the 1988 cult classic Young Einstein of course, but that goes without saying.

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Thunderbird on Cinema: Metropolis (1927), directed by Fritz Lang

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By Jacob Slater

“The mediator between brain and the hands must be the heart.”

In my little write up of Häxan: Witchcraft Through the Ages, which you can find on my Long Dark Marathon of the Soul articles, I gave a little explanation as to my feelings on the ‘genre’ known as silent movies. As I said then, it’s not so much that I have an aversion to soundless films as that I’m not very experienced with them as a viewer. I’ve grown up in an age where the ‘talkie’ is a common thing after all, where the context of a film is gathered from the dialogue as much as it is the physical action, and it’s quite to split your attention between other things and still understand the events of the film. Watching silent films took a level of concentration that I wasn’t used to, and so in the past I haven’t been as involved mentally as more modern cinema. Now that I’m principally a ‘movie guy’ however, who is attempting to gain respect and perhaps actual legal tender from writing about films (and maybe making them, if I ever get the opportunity), I decided that it’s best for me and all you out there in internet land if I expanded my horizons as much as I can. You know, rather than try and improve my writing ability or anything like that, because that sounds hard and I’m too lazy.

#truthbomb

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The Long Dark Marathon of the Soul, Halloween 2014: #11-1

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By Jacob Slater

And finally, our epic conclusion. What film shall take the top spot on the list? Will Halloween be saved? Read on and find out.

11. An American Werewolf in London (1981), directed by John Landis

Dracula. Frankenstein. The Mummy. The Wolf-Man. Ever since the original run of Universal horror movies way back in the 1930s and 40s (and before that if you count the 1910 film version of Frankenstein), we’ve seen these four concepts, if not the exact stories  repeated in hundreds of films since. Occasionally it works out okay, like the Hammer Films run in the 1950s (so much Christopher Lee…), but in most cases, like the 1972 shit-fest Dracula vs Frankenstein, it doesn’t. But they have the name recognition I guess, and if you’re in the business of selling movies rather enjoying them, I suppose it doesn’t really matter how you’re using the property as long as you can squeeze a few more bucks out of the audience. The pessimistic world of movies, kids.

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