Let’s Go To The Movies!
My second home is a movie palace: a place to escape, to explore, to dream, and to get a raised heartbeat due to stuff like this:
Yes, “killer go go dancers” are always an important part of any movie – and in this edition of “Movies A-Z”, I have those naughty go-go dance killers for you, plus many more “M” movies to share – so let’s get going with a classic slice of blaxploitation!
10 – “The Mack”
The “blaxploitation” genre includes many great films like “Super Fly” and “Foxy Brown” – and one of the founders of the genre was Max Julien, who made a great film about “The Mack” – check out the trailer:
This was the first time I’d seen Richard Pryor in a movie, and he is great – you can see how he commands the screen, even in a supporting role.
If you are unfamiliar with the “blaxploitation” genre, here is a great place to start your film education:
If you know the question “why are you so unpopular with the Chicago police department?”, then you know one of the great comedy action films:
9 – “Midnight Run”
Robert DeNiro showed his comedic chops as a Bounty Hunter who has a VERY difficult client – here is the trailer:
While not a huge hit when released in 1988, “Midnight Run” has gotten a reputation as one of the funniest action films ever – and now there is a new remastered special edition on blu-ray – read all about it here:
Next up is the first film rated “V” for violence!
8 – “Mark Of The Devil”
There is a category of film in the 70’s known as “Euro-sleaze”, exploitation films from central and eastern Europe that pushed the envelope for sex and violence….and “Mark Of The Devil” may be one of the most shocking – check out the trailer:
This film was released widely in the US in 1970, and the “gimmick” was a free “vomit bag” for everyone who attended!
See more about this wacky movie stunt here:
Another gritty exploitation classic was released in 1981 – the shocking revenge thriller from Director Abel Ferrera!
7 – “Ms. 45”
Zoe Lund starred as a young mute woman who is assaulted in New York – and she decides to fight back!
Here is the trailer:
Zoe Lund made her movie debut in this controversial thriller – a sort of female version of “Death Wish” – she is mesmerizing to watch in the film – which is raw and gritty – and her real life story was tragic…you can read more about her here:
Next up on the “M” list is one of the most imaginative, exhilarating movie musicals of all time – thanks to visionary Director Baz Luhrmann!
6 – “Moulin Rouge”
Nicole Kidman and Ewan MacGregor star as ill-fated lovers who meet at the legendary Moulin Rouge theater in Paris – here is the trailer:
“Moulin Rouge” is, without a doubt, one of the most creative films ever released.
The dance numbers are amazing – the camera never stops, and the cast has so much energy – also, Luhrmann used a unique blend of modern and classic music for the soundtrack, and the dance numbers – so get ready for a mashup of “Diamonds Are A Girl’s Best Friend” and “Smells Like Teen Spirit!”
I just re-watched this recently with my wife and it holds up as fresh as when we first saw it.
Next up is a surreal dark comedy from England – starring legendary Actor Peter Sellers – and a real life Beatle!
5 – “The Magic Christian”
This is one of the darkest of black comedies from England in 1969 – with Sellers a wealthy eccentric who likes to use money to play with people…and Beatles drummer Ringo Starr as a homeless man who he adopts! First, check out the trailer:
This is a very dark comedy with many surreal touches, and Sellers and Ringo are great together.
The movie is star-studded, with John Cleese, Yul Brynner and Raquel Welch among the stars making cameo appearances, and Paul McCartney wrote the title track “Come And Get It!”
See that video – and more, by clicking on the story here:
How about this next film – endorsed by The President and Vice President Of The United States!
4 – “Mantis In Lace”
I LOVE that President Obama and Vice President Biden were photographed at a burger bar with the “Mantis In Lace” poster in plain sight! Talk about free advertising!
This is one wacky exploitation flick – which was originally known as “LILA”, and here is the original trailer for it:
This is one of those early exploitation films that promises a LOT more then it shows – but has energy and creativity that makes it a really fun “time capture” – one of many of that era – you can see more here:
From “grindhouse” to “the Oscars”, this list of “M” movies has them all!
3 – “Midnight Cowboy”
The Best Picture of 1969, “Midnight Cowboy” is the gritty drama about an unlikely friendship between wannabe male hustler Joe Buck, and streetwise hustler Ratso Rizzo…here is the trailer:
This is a brilliant, challenging film – with Dustin Hoffman’s classic line:
“I’m Walking’ Here!”
By the way, that iconic line was ad-libbed! It’s also the only X-rated film to win Best Picture – see more great trivia about his film here:
Time to head overseas for one of the wildest new genres in film – “J-sploitation!”
2 – “The Machine Girl”
“J-sploitation” is another genre of film that is worth exploring.
Japanese exploitation films usually involve a young woman who is abused, who then gets the ultimate revenge against her attackers in very bloody ways….check out the trailer:
These films are mostly over-the-top action spectacle with lots of blood, but in a cartoonish way – really wild films – see them all here:
I will wrap up my “M” list with one of my favorite movies of all time, with an incredible performance by the legendary Peter O’ Toole:
1 – “My Favorite Year”
Richard Benjamin directed this affectionate tribute to the early days of live television – here is the trailer:
This hilarious look at life behind-the-scenes of a live weekly TV show is great fun – and also warm and surprisingly emotional as well – and Peter O’ Toole chews up the scenery as the over-the-hill action star who agrees to do the show to get the IRS off his back!
See more about this legendary “hell raiser” here:
There you go, ten great films with the letter “M” – now, if you’ve missed any of my previous letters, you can catch up:
Alan Alda’s just hanging around wait for you to check out my list of movies from “A-F” – which you can see here:
Now, if you want to see what I shared for the letter G-L, you can go here, and remember: the horse’s head was real!
Yes, that trivia is just one of the reasons to check out my “G-L” list of sixty great movies here:
Let me know who you love from “M” – like Jimmy Serano!
Categories: 70's Cinema, Academy Awards, Action Films, Art, Awards, Blaxploitation!, Books / Media, British Cinema, Comedy Movies, Cult Movies, Exploitation films, Film Fight Club, Film Noir, Foreign Films, Golden Globes, Great Films, Grindhouse, Hollywood, Horror films, Independent Cinema, Japan, Japanese Sexploitation Movies, London, Los Angeles, Memoirs, Movies, Movies About Movies, Music, New York, Obscure Movies, Obscure Music, Revenge Movies, Sexploitation Movies, Talent/Celebrities, Uncategorized