15 movies that stuck with me, in no particular order, part 1
- The Wizard of Oz: A little girl wakes up in a world she can’t relate to and has to journey deeper into the weirdness in order to come out safely on the other side. Also, sparkly shoes. I was obsessed with The Wizard of Oz. I was the Wicked Witch of the West three Halloweens in a row. My grandmother also had the books, which went on beyond the Wizard of Oz. I can’t remember most of it, but the gist is that Dorothy continues to save Oz and be far more awesome than anyone on the farm could ever realize.
- Mystery Men: When Ben and I moved to Portland we realized that, between us, we had four copies of Mystery Men: two VHS, a DVD and a BluRay. Of the two VHS, one of them was a Spanish-subtitled version I picked up at the friends of the library bookstore in Glendora for $1. The other came with him, and the DVD and BluRay were both purchased in the last 10 years. This movie has everything. It’s basically Mighty Ducks, but with awesome superheroes and no dumb kids.
- Don’t Be a Menace to South Central While Drinking Your Juice in the Hood: My dad used to let me stay up late to watch In Living Color because he was afraid I wasn’t getting any “culture” growing up with my white grandma and step-grandfather. I grew up on the Waynes family. I never really watched SNL, so when I think about the comedies my childhood, it usually has at least one Wayanes attached to it somehow. Don’t Be a Menace is probably the best example of the spooftacular style that went on to be most popular in movies like White Chicks and Scary Movie. I’m sure it can’t be as awesome as it seemed, but I wanted to be a Wayanes so bad when I was a kid.
- Spaceballs: This is another dad-influenced pick. I’m pretty sure I watched Spaceballs before I ever saw Star Wars. In fact, I remember confusing the two and getting made fun of for it. I have way more love in my heart for Mel Brooks than George Lucas could ever inspire, even if we don’t count episodes 1-3. I tried to show Ben how great Mel Brooks was with Blazing Saddles, and it wasn’t even a third as funny as I remembered. It was kind of a reverse-Django in that long instances of silence were punctuated with the N word. Since then I’ve been afraid to watch my fave because I’m not sure I could take it if that scene with the storm troopers and the giant comb wasn’t as awesome as it was when I was 15.
- But I’m a Cheerleader: I watched this movie in high school because Kate was shocked I’d never seen it, and I instantly fell in love with it’s gooey, campy goodness. Not to downplay the massive sex-appeal of Clea Duval, but I knew this movie was for me when the butchy tom boy with a shaved head tells the entire house that she likes balls. As in man balls, and the counselors say that there’s no way she likes balls because she was abused by her uncle, so she runs away in tears. Her butch-ness was played for laughs, in the same way as the guys fayness was, but I still loved every second of that movie. It’s not something that anybody could get away with today. Already a lot of it is pretty dated. But I don’t care, I like balls!!!
Read part two here