Ask me any movie related question about myself that you’d like. As the day goes on (and as long as the questions keep coming) I’ll continue to update this post and answer them. Release the hounds!
Who’s your favorite director(s)? (Alex)
MH: In no particular order…Steven Spielberg, Martin Scorsese, Steven Soderbergh, Michael Mann, and David Fincher
Is there a movie you thought you would hate, but ended up loving it? (MovieNut14)
MH: I’m kinda bad when it comes to 80′s movies that I didn’t see in the 80′s. With that in mind I was surprised how much I dug BETTER OFF DEAD.
If you could recommend only one film that every film geek must see, what film would it be? (Rachel)
MH: RAGING BULL, which I still believe is Scorsese’s masterpiece. One of the greatest examples of excellent acting, characters, story, photography, direction, editing and style. A classic that not enough film geeks our age have seen.
MANY more questions and answers can be found after the jump. Take a look!
What movie consistently affects you most on both an emotional and intellectual level? (Sean)
MH: Congratulations – that’s the toughest one to answer so far. For that I have to go back to one of the few films I can never watch again – REQUIEM FOR A DREAM. It emotionally kicked my ass, but likewise left me in awe of its construct. Perhaps on one bright and sunny afternoon I’ll try to revisit it.
What’s a classic/essential film that you’ve never seen? (Fletch)
MH: My first choice was going to be Kurosawa’s 1962 classic “Ballad for a Smartassed Blogger”…
…but in all honesty HIGH NOON is one I’ve never seen that I really think I should. I have a big blind spot for many of the classic westerns, and this is one of my worst offenses.
What would you consider as the most disturbing film(s) you have seen? (CS)
MH: Another tough question, as I don’t really do “disturbing” all that often. One that comes to mind though is a documentary called TARNATION. A guy cobbled together the video diaries he recorded growing up with home video footage of his home life. His mom was in terrible shape from being forced into shock therapy, and there’s a scene of her at the end that I found rather unsettling. Probably the closest I’ve ever come to leaving a screening.
**Edit** I’m horrible when it comes to movies dealing with exorcism. So much so that I can’t watch them (and I’ve tried). So along with TRANATION, I admit to being a giant pussy where any of the Exorcist movies are concerned.
Why do you insist on keeping your dvd collection separate from your wife’s? Are her movies not good enough to mingle with yours (pretentious much?)? Or are you preparing for an eventual break up? (Lady Hatter)
MH: Because I have an elitest streak. It would pain me to see BRIEF ENCOUNTER on the shelf spooning with BRING IT ON. Yes, I’m pretentious. No, I’m not bracing for a break-up.
NEW HOPE or EMPIRE? (Marc)
MH: Finally – a layup! Growing up i was always more drawn to EMPIRE for the scenes of The Millennium Falcon dogfighting with Star Destroyers. As I grew up I found myself drawn to the darker tone of the story.
What was the first film that really got you attached to movies in a way that went beyond enjoyment into a passion? (Heather)
MH: I actually aluded to this in my podcast with Meredith. DEAD MAN WALKING is a tipping point that comes to mind. As a teenager, I certainly watched a lot of movies…and indeed more than just the blockbusters. However, most of the dramas I was taking in were still of the big-budget Hollywood variety (A FEW GOOD MEN, JFK, PHILADELPHIA). But as I approached my 18th birthday, I started to find that I was getting drawn to the somewhat smaller, more human stories. They were the ones that stuck with me…and they were the ones I loved to tell people they should go and see.
Do you prefer to podcast or write? (Heather)
MH: You again? If I had to choose, I’d write. It’s one of those things that I’ve always loved to do, and there are a lot of days I still can’t believe I’m writing to an actual audience. But…Podcasting has been such a fun experience since it has allowed me to actually speak with so many other passionate movie enthusiasts. It’s a boatload of extra work, but so very worthwhile. Still, if I could only do one, I’m sticking with the keyboard.
What’s your “go to” movie. The one that you can play again and again, ad infinitum, without getting tired of? (Danger Girl)
MH: ALMOST FAMOUS is of course my yearbook answer. But others would include OUT OF SIGHT, WALL-E, FERRIS BEULLER’S DAY OFF, and CASABLANCA.
Are you a crier? Do you easily get moved by movies you watch? (Marc)
MH: Where’s all the repeat business coming from all of a sudden – everybody on lunch or somethin? Some movies have indeed made me cry…probably no more than a dozen. It doesn’t happen often or easily, but I’m not above showing emotion in a film if I’m seeing something particularly sad or particularly beautiful.
Why are movies your artistic medium of choice? (David)
MH: Truthfully – they’re not. Along with the amount of movies I watch, I also read a lot of books, listen to a boatload of music, take a fair amount of photographs, and watch too much tv. Movies are just what I’ve decided to write about.
You can only take one with you – The Godfather or Pulp Fiction? (Fitz)
MH: Another layup. (About time too, these questions are getting deeper in a hurry). My answer for “What is The Greatest Movie of All Time” is THE GODFATHER (over CITIZEN KANE, CASABLANCA, etc). Thus the choice is easy.
I appeal to your buddhist leanings, are there any has-beens you’d like to see make a triumphant return à la Downey or Rourke? (Sean)
MH: Everytime I think I’ve heard the hardest question, I’ve been proven wrong. I’d love to resurrect Paul Hogan’s career. Part of me thinks he might make for a cool gangster in a Quenten Tarentino movie. Get him away from the goofiness…perhaps he can surprise us.
Agree or Disagree? With all of the 80′s movie remakes out there these days, isn’t it time someone re-did some justice to Weekend At Bernie’s? (Susie Q)
MH: I actually plead the fifth – I’ve never seen either of he BERNIE’S movies.
If you could eliminate one movie from eternity, which would it be (Nicole)
MH: The entire _____ MOVIE series (SCARY MOVIE, DATE MOVIE, NOT ANOTHER TEEN MOVIE, etc). There are a lot of movies I think are crap, but I can see why a certain audience would enjoy them, and thus wouldn’t want to deny them their fun. However, parody films are the lowest movie lifeform in my eyes. I’d wager if we actually hooked up the sensors to someone watching one, we’d actually be able to witness brain cells dying.
Do you think my book would make for a decent movie? Assuming neither of us was allowed to influence the casting of Trick the Dog? (Susie Q)
MH: I do indeed actually. I see Laura Linney in the role of Emily, Carrie Anne-Moss as Julie, Rose Byrne as Samantha, Elisabeth Moss as Sara, and Mark Ruffalo as Ryan. Oh, and find the mutt that played Sandy in ANNIE – he’s Trick.
What’s a film that for any reason you wish you’d made? (Fletch)
MH: There are a lot of films that I could simply watch on mute, and given my photographic background…I’d love to be able to say “I fuckin’ shot that!”. At the top of the heap in that respect, is a movie recently mentioned by our friends The Film Cynics. ROAD TO PERDITION, for the final scene alone to say nothing of the countless other moments of beauty.
You’re on death row and you get your last meal and have to choose a last movie- What movie do you pick? (Wild Celtic)
MH: I’m goin’ out laughing…queue up CHICKEN RUN.
A man walks up to you in the street. He tells you that you can pick one actor/actress. All others will be airlifted to an undisclosed location and never be heard from again. Who do you choose to save? (Sebastian)
MH: That one’s easy – we could never deprive the world of the international treasure that is Christopher Walken.
How do Doc Brown and Marty McFly know each other? (The Film Cynics)
MH: Question of the day – congratulations. I’m gonna go with the fact that Doc is so busy doing all his mad experiments that he never has time to walk Einstein, thus he hired Marty to do it. The dog-walking led to Marty getting curious, which eventually led to an odd friendship.
Do you think that Terry Gilliam has a hit left in him? Was it the studios or the passage of time that have robbed him of his greatness? (The Film Cynics)
MH: Unfortunately not. The man thinks outside of the box…so far outside that he’d be charged by the minute if he wanted to phone the box…as such, his vision has drifted well away from what mainstream hit-making audiences want to embrace. He likely has more wonderful stories left in him, but his draw has a strongly defined ceiling. If Ledger’s last performance in PARNASSUS couldn’t bring ‘em in – Terry’s screwed.
What could you stand to lose to the MPAA: All the swearing or all the violence? (The Film Cynics)
MH: Three questions? What am I, OZ the Great and Powerful?? At least this one is a loose puck in the crease. I’d definitely ditch the violence. Beyond historical context, it’s hard to advocate a need for violence in film. Language on the other hand can be used effectively, even if it is a tad off-colour. I could live with never seeing another drop of blood shed, but I wouldn’t want to live in a world where I couldn’t sit in a dark theatre and hear a character tell another character to “Eat penguin shit”.
What book would you most like to see get an adaption? (Simon)
MH: One of my all-time favorite books is John Irving’s A Prayer for Owen Meany which was bastardized into the movie SIMON BIRCH. I’d like to see it get a proper go-round. Likewise, being the big Chuck Palahniuk fan that I am, I’m anxious to see what can be done with Survivor…should it ever actually get made.
Who’s your most upstanding, great, I-hope-my-kid-turns-out-to-be-like-that-guy/gal movie character? (Aiden)
MH: Not to state the textbook answer, but given that it’s one of my all-time favorite films I have to choose George bailey from IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE. People with his sense of community and greater good are in short supply these days.
Most loathsome, blood-curdling, that-jerk/skizzank-deserves-a-nice-swift-boot-to-the-groin movie character? (Aiden)
MH: Going back to one of the first war movies I ever watched, Tom Berrenger’s Sgt. Barnes from PLATOON. The guy seems to have lost all sense of humanity in that jungle.
Your favorite actor and actress? (Castor)
MH: I was wondering if His Castorness was going to join in on this. Glad to have you sir…this entire post was in part inspired by wuor current 31DBBB Series.
I haven’t really had a favorite actor or actress in a while, mostly because actors don’t get me into movies – directors do. But as for the ones that have my eye these days, Marion Cotillard is certainly up there for me. Loved her in PUBLIC ENEMIES, LA VIE EN ROSE, and BIG FISH. I have to go back and re-watch A VERY LONG ENGAGEMENT since Kurt from Row Three always brings up her part in that film as an assassin.
As for actors…I actually find that question a lot harder since there are so many I like a lot. Christopher Walken, Javier Bardem, Daniel Day Lewis, Russel Crowe, Alfred Molina…but if I have to put one above them all, I think I go with Sean Penn. The guy just has a grizzle to him that I love, and has certainly had quite a decade at the movies.
Is there any genre of cinema you wish you could simply implant in your brain that you really can’t be bothered to watch? (Simon Columb)
MH: I don’t entirely undrestand the appeal of B-Movies, probably because my sort of crap film is a different genre of crap film. However, around the blogosphere – and certainly amongst my local circle of enthusiasts – B-Movies are spoken of with a reverence reserved for the Dead Sea Scrolls. Never been my bag.
Since TIFF is just around the corner, what was your favorite experience covering the festival in 2008?
MH: One thing I love dearly about TIFF is being able to walk into films knowing precious little. At least a few times I’ll grab a ticket based only on the person directing it, and/or perhaps an actor or two. Going back to 2008, this tendency hit the jackpot by sitting down for SLUMDOG MILLIONAIRE blind. I knew the title, and that Danny Boyle directed it – everything after that was a glorious surprise.
What’s your favorite way to refer to the actor Joseph Gordon-Levitt? (Kai Parker)
Is there an actor/actress you just don’t understand the appeal for? (MovieNut14)
MH: Acting-wise, I can’t think of any. the only thing that comes to mind, is how I can’t ever seem to bend my brain around why certain young stars are famous other than the fact that they have pretty faces. That might make me sound like a crumudggeon, but I’ll take crumudgeonness over sitting through a Chase Crawford movie any day.
What’s your favourite kids movie, in the sense that it satisfies you as an adult too? (Madgestic)
MH: A tough one, since I find that many movies we like as children don’t hold up terribly well when we look at them through grown-up eyes. But that said, it’d have to be E.T. I really wanted to be on one of those bikes as a kid, and pretty much grew up munching on Reese’s. Now, when I watch it as an adult, along with the sadness of the story moving me so much more, I’m also quite taken with the intricate direction Spielberg brought to this film. As the old saying goes – they don’t make ‘em like that anymore!
Do you keep your DVDs and Blurays separate…or do you let them mingle? (Besides Mrs. Hatter’s, I mean.) Follow up: Do you have a prefered method for arranging your DVDs? (The Film Cynics)
MH: Brace yourself boy-o…I don’t have a bluray! If I did I would likely keep the separate due to the physical size difference between a dvd case and a bd case.
As for preferred organization method, there’s a funny story there. I really dig organizing my films chronologically – which puts THE PUBLIC ENEMY on the top shelf, goes year by year along and would end with EHERE THE WILD THINGS ARE at the bottom (for now). Unfortunately, most of my friends and family mocked me for such geekery and claimed that they could never find anything (“When the hell did SCARFACE come out???”). Thus, I caved to public outcry and organized all my dvd’s alphabetically.
Suckiest movie you’ve ever seen? (MovieNut14)
MH: I think I’ve told this story before, but a girl I once knew twisted my arm to take her to BLAIR WITCH 2: BOOK OF SHADOWS. As the credits started rolling, I turned to her and said “You owe me ten bucks”.