Tuesday, March 25, 2014

The Captain America Blog-A-Thon

Andy of Fandango Groovers created this blog-a-thon that has a very interesting concept. With the upcoming release for Captain America: The Winter Soldier, Andy came up with an idea of what 10 films would you show to Steve Rogers aka Captain America from 1943 in the year that he was frozen to 2011 when he wakes up to discover that he’s slept for 70 years. Well, it’s a unique idea but definitely tough since picking 10 movies from 1943 to 2011 is definitely a challenge.

For my list, I decided to go with films that are different from one another as it would have a mixture of gritty realism in some cases but also films that have entertainment value and offer something different. I could’ve gone with my favorite films or anything that’s classified as classics. Yet, I went with something that has something for everyone but also the kind of films that are willing to challenge ideas and such. Here are the following 10 films:

1948-Bicycle Thieves

If anyone wants to know what was going on in post-war Europe, this film is a perfect example of the harsh realities Italians had to face. Especially as it tells the story between a father and his young son trying to retrieve a stolen bicycle that the father needed for work as it’s a film that is heartbreaking and features one of the most heartbreaking endings in cinema.

1954-The Seven Samurai

Japanese cinema is a must for anyone who has been frozen for 70s and who better to represent Japanese cinema than Akira Kurosawa. Here’s a film that exemplifies all of the brilliance of what it means to fight back and have it be filled with action and drama as it features magnificent performances from Toshiro Mifune and Takashi Shimura.

1956-The Searchers

Westerns is as American as apple pie as who better to bring that than John Ford and John Wayne. Especially as it would play into the dark world of a man trying to find his lost niece and deal with the sense of prejudices that he’s been carrying inside. It’s a film filled with a sense of adventure and gorgeous imagery as it’s a touchstone of what a western should be.

1966-The Battle of Algiers

The world becomes much more complicated in the late 1950s and 1960s as this film is a perfect example of the idea that there’s really no such thing as good guys and bad guys. It’s a film that showcased what Algerians were trying to do and what the French were doing in this conflict that killed millions of lives as it would play into a world that is starting to unravel.


Federico Fellini is a must as this film displays the idea of the good times of what it was like being a child coming-of-age in a small village. It’s definitely one of Fellini’s more accessible films that is filled with imagery and bawdy humor that only he could tell it. Yet, it’s one that also has a lot of heart and whimsy as it plays to the joys of childhood.

1975-The Mirror

Andrei Tarkovsky’s film that is based on his own life is certainly the most unconventional film in this list as it doesn’t have a traditional structure while it plays with the ideas of dreams and realities. It’s a film that is about memories told from a man that is about to die as it’s filled with evocative imagery that manages to become far more rewarding with repeated viewings.

1983-National Lampoon's Vacation

If there’s a film that exemplifies American optimism and family values at its most insane, it’s this film. A film about a guy driving his family cross-country from Chicago to Los Angeles so he can take them to an amusement park features an iconic performance from Chevy Chase as the eternal optimist as it’s definitely one of the greatest comedies ever.

1995-Strange Days

A film that really bends genres as it’s a sci-fi film and a crime thriller all rolled into one that is helmed by Kathryn Bigelow as women directors need to be represented in this list. It’s wild and full of bravado yet it’s a film that is really driven by a woman as Angela Bassett’s character is an absolute bad-ass and not afraid to play the straight woman for Ralph Fiennes.

1998-The Thin Red Line

Terrence Malick’s adaptation of James Jones’ novel is unlike any war film out there yet it’s one of the most powerful anti-war films ever created. Set in the Guadalcanal campaign in 1943, it’s a film that features images that is unlike anything out there but with an unconventional story that plays into the sense of terror about war as well as the sense of humanity and inhumanity that occurs in the battlefield.

2000-In the Mood for Love

Love is a complicated thing, especially when two people find out that their respective spouses have been having an affair with each other. That is the premise of Wong Kar-Wai’s ravishing film as it explores the complexities of love as well as loneliness and heartbreak as it’s told with such beauty and care. It’s definitely a film that has the audience rooting for Tony Leung Chiu-Wai and Maggie Cheung to get together but there’s things that would complicate everything.

10 other great films to see between 1943 and 2011:

1. The Red Shoes 
2. The Wages of Fear 
3. The Apartment 
4. Once Upon a Time in the West 
5. 2001: A Space Odyssey 
6. Nashville 
7. Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown 
8. Ratcatcher 
9. Lost in Translation 
10. WALL-E

© thevoid99 2014


Anonymous said...

Great list! And we share one!

s. said...

I LOVE the inclusion of Strange Days. I think it's one of the most underrated movies out there, such a fantastic fun and Bassett is awesome, also how often is Fiennes this laid back?

thevoid99 said...

@Fisti-I'm glad we both agreed on The Thin Red Line to be in that list.

@Sati.-I figured that ladies needed to be represented and what better film to do so than Strange Days. Besides, it's a kick-ass film made by a kick-ass lady and starring a kick-ass lady. Women gotta represent!

Dell said...

Some very inspired choices as expected. Love your inclusion of Strange Days, not only for the movie itself but your reasoning, too. And everyone should experience the joy of Vacation.

thevoid99 said...

@Wendell Ottley-Thank you. For a list with some bleak films, I figured there needs to be something to lighten the mood. Why not a comedy classic like Vacation?

Chris said...

I haven't done this blog-a-thon,I love the inclusion of The Mirror-my favorite Tarkovsky, a truly unique experience watching that film.

thevoid99 said...

@Chris-I could've gone with any other film but I ended choosing The Mirror for its unconventional tone and the fact that it's a film about memories.