All that I am, all that I ever was…

I am more than my mental health. I am more than my homelessness. I am more than any one aspect of me. I am Addy. And this is…


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Movie Monday: Ten decades, ten films…

You are about to be marooned on a (semi) deserted island for one year.

You know you’re about to be marooned on a semi-deserted island for one year because you’ve paid someone to ship you to the Lost island. The reason you’ve paid someone to ship you to the Lost island doesn’t need to be explained (as nothing to do with this island needs to be satisfactorily explained!) :p

To keep you from going insane you have to take one movie from each decade between 1920 -2010. There’s no real reason why you’re only allowed one film per decade, you just have to accept it.

What (and why) do you choose?

Go…

~ My Desert Island Decatet ~

Posters 1

1920s – Sherlock Jr.
…because it’s the first Buster Keaton I ever saw (so lots of good memories attached!)
Plus, I’m gonna need to laugh!

1930s – The Wizard of Oz
…because it’s one of my favourite movies of all time.
Plus, I’m gonna need to sing!

1940s – Citizen Kane
…because it’s the greatest movie of all time! (Vertigo is nothing compared to this!)
Plus, I’m gonna need to be inspired.

1950s – Roman Holiday
…because it’s one of the greatest romantic comedies of all time.
Plus, I’m gonna need me some Audrey Hepburn.

1960s – Psycho
…because I wasn’t able to choose Shadow of  a Doubt, Rear Window or The 39 Steps.
Plus, I’m gonna need me some Hitchcock.

1970s – The Private Life of Sherlock Holmes
…because it’s the greatest ever Sherlock Holmes adaptation.
Plus, I’m gonna need me some Holmes and Wilder.

1980s – My Neighbour Totoro
…because it’s the greatest animated movie of all time!
Plus, I’m gonna need to dance (to that awesome theme tune!)

1990s – Fight Club
…because it’s one of my favourite movies of all time.
Plus, I’m gonna need to know how to make soap.

2000s – Secretary
…because it’s a film I have an immensely complicated love/hate relationship with.
Plus, I’m gonna need me some Maggie Gyllenhaal.

2010s – The Avengers
…because after so many serious films I think a mindless actioner is in order.
Plus, I’m gonna need me some Whedon (and Johansson!)

Posters 2

So? Over to you…


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Movie Monday: Where are all the female superheroes?

superheromontage

Captain America…Thor…The Incredible Hulk…Batman…Green Arrow…Iron Man…Spider-Man…Green Lantern…Ghost Rider…Green Hornet…Superman…so many superheros, so many testicles…yet so very few women!

Regardless of how much I enjoy superhero movies, the number of men with bulging biceps and throaty voices rushing around to save the world is seriously starting to annoy me. It seems that every month we have yet another superhero willing to put their penis on the line to prove, once and for all, that only men are capable of being the ‘hero’. That women, with the occasional bit-playing exception (Black Widow, Catwoman) are merely objects to be saved (and ultimately bedded) by the superior male gender.

What utter insulting, annoying, sexist crap!

With the influx of superhero movies over the last several years, I think it’s about time female superheroes started to get a better piece of the action. So for today’s Movie Monday, I present six female superheroes I’d like to see headline their own movie (and prove once and for all that women can – and do – save the world!)

Hawkgirl She-Ra Spider-Girl Squirrel Girl SupergirlTank Girl

Are you sick of the invasion of male superheroes and think it’s about time we had some kick-ass women saving the world?
If so, who would you like to see on-screen. If not, what exactly do you have against female superheroes?


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Movie Monday: A few of my favorite movies…

Ever since deciding to partake in daily memes on this blog I’ve been searching for something to do on Mondays. After months of searching the Interwebs and being wholly uninspired by what I found, I’ve decided to create my own. Or rather to just simply dedicate Mondays to be about one of my favourite things…movies.

Whether it is sharing my favourite movies, venting over various films I can’t stand or focussing on a single aspect of film-making that inspires and or interests me, each and every Monday feel free to join me with a barrel of popcorn for an exciting adventure into all things motion picture related. Switching off your mobile is optional, but if it goes off during the post, prepare to be scolded :p

For my inaugural Movie Monday I’ve decided to share ten movies that I absolutely adore…but rather than simply tell you the name of the movie, I’m sharing the one line IMDB synopsis. All you have to do is work out what the movie is.

Simple :p

What movie am I?

Movie Quiz

1. “A San Francisco cartoonist becomes an amateur detective obsessed with tracking down a serial killer.

2. “A young drifter working on a river barge disrupts his employers’ lives while hiding the fact that he knows more about a dead woman found in the river than he admits.

3. “A bored and sheltered princess escapes her guardians and falls in love with an American newsman in Rome.

4. “When two girls move to the country to be near their ailing mother, they have adventures with the wonderous forest spirits who live nearby.

5. “A new kid in town assembles a fledgling rock band – together, they achieve their dreams and compete against the best in a battle of the bands.

6. “A caving expedition goes horribly wrong, as the explorers become trapped and ultimately pursued by a strange breed of predators.

7. “After death, people have just one week to choose only one memory to keep for eternity.

8. “A young woman discovers her visiting “Uncle Charlie” may not be the man he seems to be.

9. “A young woman starts working for a demanding lawyer, where their employer-employee relationship turns into a sexual, sadomasochistic one.

10. “A group of very different individuals with different ideas of how to face the end come together as the world is expected to end in six hours at the turn of the century.

~ Clicking each line will whistle you away to the IMDB entry so you can find out all about the movie in question ~

So what movies do you love? Feel free to share the titles (or synopses, if you feel like being quizzical) in the comments or, if you like, in a blog post of your own :)


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My Life in Animated Movies

Over the last several months I have been writing a sporadic series titled  ‘My Life in…‘ where I highlight the films/books/moments/music that have defined me through each year of my life. As it’s been a while since I wrote a fun post, here is ‘My Life in Animated Movies’.

For each year since I was born, until last year, I have chosen an animated movie that has resonated throughout my life. Not necessarily the best animated movie of the year, but the one that would feature in a DVD collection that speaks of who I am in my soul.

Animated Movies

1978       The Lord of the Rings    

This was my introduction into the world of Tolkien and, unlike the recent adaptation of ‘The Hobbit’, can be watched without the sudden need to fall asleep.

1979       The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe

This was my introduction into the world of C.S.Lewis…although it’s not as good as the 2005 movie or the classic BBC serial.

1980       Bon Voyage, Charlie Brown (and Don’t Come Back!!)

Charles M. Schulz. ‘Nuff said.

1981       The Fox and the Hound               

This is the first animated film I can remember seeing at the cinema. My mother took my siblings and I to see this in Richmond (London) at a time when I was completely unaware of who Kurt Russell was.

1982       The Secret of NIMH       

Why are rodents so popular when it comes to animation? When the finished product is this good, who really cares?

1983       The Wind in the Willows            

This film used to freak me out. Seriously.

1984       Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind        

Hands up who can pronounce Nausicaä correctly? I saw this for the first time during a Studio Ghibli retrospective at the Cinema Nova in 2005, a magnificent feat of animated storytelling.

1985       The Black Cauldron        

Do you remember heading down to the newsagent as a child and spending your hard earned pocket money on pointless packets of stickers? Do you remember ripping open the packets hoping this time you’d find the one bloody sticker that was preventing you from completing the album, but you never did?

Disney’s The Black Cauldron was the only (the only) sticker album I ever completed and remains in all it’s disheveled, disintegrating glory in a box in my parent’s house as proof completing a Panini album was indeed possible.

1986       The Great Mouse Detective      

If this film hadn’t been made it’s entirely possible my life-long love affair with Sherlock Holmes would never have occurred, for this was my introduction into the world of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s most beloved creation. (see, animated rodents :p)

1987       Footrot Flats: The Dog’s Tale     

John Clarke provides one of the voices; ‘nuff said!

1988       My Neighbour Totoro   
Runners up: Grave of the Fireflies, The Land Before Time

Simply the greatest animated movie of all time…ever…period! The only people who could possibly disagree with this accolade are those who have never seen it. Hopefully you’re not one of them.

1989       The Little Mermaid        

I used to have a crush on Ariel. Just saying.

1990       Duck Tales the Movie: Treasure of the Lost Lamp            

This film will forever remind me of my childhood. And dodgy NES games. And rediculously addictive theme songs.

1991       Beauty and the Beast    

Until I saw My Neighbour Totoro this was my favourite animated movie of all time. At one point I knew it word for word…not exactly something a childless man should be admitting to, which I guess is why I live a socially isolated life :p

1992       Aladdin               

A film I can no longer watch due to it being a trigger to the abusive relationship I was in.

1993       The Wrong Trousers      

Wallace and Gromit were never better than they were in this masterpiece!

1994       The Lion King    

As those who have read this blog know, I once served Jeremy Irons coffee. Squee!

1995       Toy Story            

The second best Toy Story movie, after its first sequel, of course..

1996       James and the Giant Peach        

Better than A Nightmare Before Christmas. Oooooo, controversy :p

1997       Princess Mononoke      

Often forgotten fact…Neil Gaiman worked on the script for the English language version.

1998       A Bug’s Life       

I’ve said it before and I’m sure I’ll say it again; David Hyde Pierce is a genius.

1999       My Neighbours the Yamadas    

Perhaps Studio Ghibli should consider using the word Neighbour in all of their movie titles, for this lesser-known animated masterpiece is superior to some of their better known films.

2000       Titan A.E             

I watched this in Halifax with Rachel. She didn’t like it. Although she, like I, did enjoy the very-Whedon ‘Bob’ exchange.

2001       Monsters Inc   
Runners up: Waking Life, Shrek, Spirited Away

For years after watching this movie Louise (and anyone who I told/found out) teased me mercilessly over the fact I bawled my eyes out when they say goodbye to Boo; one of my favourite animated characters in the history of animated film!

2002       The Wild Thornberrys Movie   

This movie was on the television the day after I was assaulted in 2007. I watched it curled up in a ball and remember thinking ‘why couldn’t you be the Rugrats Movie’? (as I have always loved the Rugrats!)

2003       The Triplets of Belleville             

Magnificent. Beautiful. Inspirational.

2004       The Incredibles               

One of the all-time great CGI movies and easily one of Pixar’s finest.

2005       Wallace & Gromit: The Curse of the Were-Rabbit          

I very nearly didn’t get to see this movie as I refused to switch my phone off for the preview screening I was attending. The phone had no camera facility and I needed to have it on for work (as I was on call). Fortunately, they relented as long as they witnessed me putting it on silent (something I always do when going to the cinema anyway!)

2006       Happy Feet

I watched this with my parents on Christmas Day 2006; my last ‘enjoyable’ Christmas. Given I was suffering from Glandular Fever at the time I fell asleep when Mumble arrived at the zoo so, to this day, have no idea how the film ended as I didn’t wake up until the credits had started rolling.

2007       Ratatouille        

This is a film I watched during an anxiety ridden flight from Melbourne to London in 2008. My least favourite Pixar film, most likely because of the bad memories it brings of this horrible flight! Also, more animated bloody rodents!

2008       Ponyo  

Another Studio Ghibli gem.

2009       Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs        

A film that never failed to make me smile…until three days ago, when even this was unable to break the insidious depressive episode I’ve found myself in.

2010       How to Train Your Dragon
Runner up: Tangled

My favourite CGI animated movie of all time. Simply stunning.

2011       Puss in Boots    

I’ve never really been a fan of the vastly overrated Shrek movies, but this spin-off was quite marvellous. The short that accompanies it on the DVD is also wonderful :)

2012       Brave   

Perhaps it’s the red-headed Scottish heroine. Perhaps because it reminds me of Miyazaki. Perhaps because it’s highly under-rated. Perhaps because I watched it on a good mood day. I don’t know. All I do know is that I loved this movie from beginning to end and it should have received far more acclaim than it did.

See also:

My Life in Movies
My Life in Books
My Life in Happy Memories
My Life in Music

and

Addy’s Top Twenty Animated Films of All Time


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Addy’s Best of 2012: Best Movie

In addition to the Mental Health Month Challenge I have decided to undertake a more light-hearted challenge this month that I discovered on Heck Yeah Tumblr Challenges. Each day in December I will be issuing an award in celebration of everything 2012, continuing today with…

Best Movie of 2012

Of all the awards that I’ve issued in this series, this has been the hardest. When I had a life beyond homelessness and mental health I was an avid cinema-goer. I would, without fail, visit the cinema to watch virtually every new independent, multiplex and world movie release there was. There were times that I spent entire days watching three or four movies as I’ve had a deep passion for film for as long as I can remember.

But since 2007, I simply have not been in a financial or mental position to do this. Thus, the number of 2012 film releases I’ve seen are few and far between, severely limiting my choices for this award. What few were left I had to think long and hard about, as I came away from most movies I saw this year a tad disappointed – but as I’ve said in the past, this is more to do with social media’s obsession with hyping everything out of all proportion that nothing (The Dark Knight Rises included) could live up to.

In the end, I decided to go with the film I had the most fun watching, and although The Amazing Spider-Man came mighty close,  a criminally good one-take scene, a brilliant ensemble, Scarlet Johansson’s hair and the undeniable genius of Joss Whedon won through.

~ The Avengers ~

_The Avengers

I have been vocal in the past about being disappointed with this movie and I stand by its nomination in my most overrated of the year award, but as I explained in that post overrated doesn’t necessarily mean bad. Aside from a weaker than expected first hour, an annoying discrepancy  involving Banner’s sudden ability to control the Hulk and lack of screen time for Cobie Smulders, there is an awful lot to like about this movie.

Joss Whedon did a fantastic job of brining several major characters (and actors) together and Marvel should be praised for playing the long game over the last five years. The visual effects were, on the whole, excellent and the movie benefited immensely by not taking itself too seriously, something that has unfortunately effected a lot of superhero adaptations in the wake of Nolan’s Batman films.

~ Runners up for ‘Best Movie of 2012’ award ~

~ View the rest of the awards in Addy’s Best of 2012 series ~


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Addy’s Best of 2012: Best Animated Movie

In addition to the Mental Health Month Challenge I have decided to undertake a more light-hearted challenge this month that I discovered on Heck Yeah Tumblr Challenges. Each day in December I will be issuing an award in celebration of everything 2012 and as I don’t watch any of the reality shows, realised I would need to come up with a couple of replacement categories, including today’s award…

Best Animated Movie of 2012

~ Brave ~

Brave

This movie, a runner-up in my most underrated of 2012 award, is a more than worthy contender for ‘movie of the year’, let alone ‘animated movie of the year’. Unfairly ignored on it’s original release, I’m hoping this Disney-Pixar gem will find the audience it deserves on DVD and Blu-Ray.

Not only is the animation exceptional (seriously, just look at Merida’s hair!) and the voice cast magnificent (including the superb Kelly Macdonald, Billy Connolly and Emma Thompson), the storyline was not the all out action-adventure I was expecting it to be. Instead it reminded me of the work of Miyazaki and his wistful, spirit filled fables starring strong female characters.

Perhaps this is one of the many reasons I loved Brave so much (the fact it’s based in Scotland should go without saying!)

Being a huge fan of strong female characters it was quite wonderful to finally see Pixar create one for the screen. Granted they did occasionally stray a little too close to Disney Princess territory, but Merida was a breath of fresh air from recent animated creations (and not just because I have a kinky obsession with her amazing red hair!)

This film certainly didn’t deserve the criticism it received upon it’s release and more than earns its place alongside Pixar’s more well known (and critically heralded) work.

~ Runners up for ‘Best Animated Movie of 2012’ award ~