TCM Film Festival Part 2

April 27, 2014

I got a decent amount of sight-seeing done on this trip, so I'm looking forward to concentrating a bit more on the actual festival when I go back. I saw eight films total which I think is pretty pale in comparison to most festival-goers. I think even all of my friends saw more movies than I did (I can't blame sight-seeing for that though, I just overslept every morning. And skipped one movie for a mid-day nap. oops!)

The first movie that I saw at the festival was The World of Henry Orient with Paula Prentiss in attendance! I've seen it before but I don't remember finding it as funny as I did this time. The film is about two teenagers who stalk a pianist around New York City. The teen girls have a very Mary Clancy-Rachel Devery dynamic, with one kooky adventurous troublemaker and her slightly-less kooky stooge. The pianist was played by Peter Sellers. If you think he's usually too over-the-top, in this movie he is not. If you think he's perfectly lovely in his other movies, in this one he's just as awesome but a little toned down. Either way, he's brilliant. And his love interest is a nervous, paranoid married lady played by Paula Prentiss.

Do you ever think that somebody's acting is just SO funny that laughing doesn't seem like a sufficent expression of how joyful they make you feel? I wanted to invent a new form of comedic appreciation for how funny Paula Prentiss was in this movie. The movie is available on amazon instant watch here.

This is just an awesome mural that I saw on Hollywood Blvd.

The second movie that I saw was Invasion of the Body Snatchers. My dad is a big fan of 1950's science fiction movies so I knew he'd disown me if I didn't go see it, lol ;) In all seriousness, though, I love me a 50's sci-fi too, and I was pretty excited about seeing this one on the big screen!

I've been to quite a few classic film screenings at repertory theaters and so many times I've been disappointed and annoyed by how many people in the audience laugh at things that aren't funny. I assumed that most people coming to this festival would probably be more respectful, but I was still very apprehensive seeing a movie like this in a theater. Thankfully, the audience was amazing. Nobody laughed, except at lines that were obviously intended to trigger a giggle. The credits were met with applause, and you could hear a pin drop when the movie was playing, it was so quiet. I wish that every movie-going experience could be like this one! The movie is available on amazon instant watch here.

The next movie that I saw was a midnight screening of David Lynch's Eraserhead.

This is me, Millie and Sarah pre-Eraserhead.

This is Sarah, Millie and me post-Eraserhead.

I'm a big fan of Twin Peaks and Blue Velvet so I thought -- yay! David Lynch! I'm in! But this was much more disturbing than I could have imagined. I don't even know how David Lynch imagined it. I'm not sure I can even really describe it? It starts out having a semblance of a plot -- a man finds out his girlfriend is having a baby and they get married. At dinner with his girlfriend's parents he cuts into a cornish hen and the little chicken starts convulsing and oozing a thick liquid. Later on, the baby (which looks kind of like an alien/hairless horse hybrid?) is just constantly crying, in a pitch that lies somewhere on the border between a human infant and a velociraptor. Large worms shaped like pieces of funnel cake start falling from the sky and slithering around. A head explodes.

I'm sure that its reputation as a cinematic masterpiece is apt and I'm just missing something -- I generally try to have an open mind about movies, even disturbing ones, but I just didn't get it. I had a lot of fun attending the midnight screening with my friends, though, and it's going to be a lifelong memory, for sure. Not my favorite movie of the festival though, ha! It's available on amazon instant watch here.

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