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Pecha-Kucha Movie

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Mark Suszko
Pecha-Kucha Movie
on Jun 25, 2015 at 3:25:22 am

I've decided that my next presentation at the local pecha-kucha night should be 20 slides and seven minutes about a classic movie people think they know well.

Scott and Tim would probably do Godfather or Die Hard, I'm guessing, but the wife thinks I should do one based around "Casablanca", because the local PK audience skews towards women.

Any other suggestions for movies that would make good PK night topics? In terms of Godfather, what I'd do is focus on the high quotability of dialog in it, used by men as a sort of "lingua franca" in many business, political, and social situations. Scott or Tim has already waxed elegiac on the seminal, genre-creating nature of Die Hard, but I wouldn't want to crib their stuff, and the wife is agin' it. I'm shying away from Star Wars and Trek because I don;t want to scare off the audience of mundanes with too deep a dive down the fandom rabbit hole.

What movie would you choose to lecture on, using 20 slides, 20 seconds each?

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Stephen Smith
Re: Pecha-Kucha Movie
on Jun 25, 2015 at 4:09:12 pm

I don't know what a pecha-kucha is but it sounds like they cover all sorts of subjects. Since October 2015 is right around the corner and I'm a big Back to the Future fan I think it would be cool to present on Hollywoods take on the future and focus on what they have gotten wrong and more important, what they got right. In Back to the Future 2 there is the Jaws 18 or whatever number it was joke. At the time in the theater sequels where not common. I remember them basically really sucking. Home Alone 2 was just the same movie but this time in New York. Lets not even mention American Graffiti. There was a reason a lot of films back then couldn't get past the 2nd sequel. Sure films like Star Wars did but most sucked. I remember back then not being very interested in sequels. Sorry Wayne's World 2. Now, I'm very excited for sequels. Furious 7 is one of the biggest films of all times. All of the big films I'm excited about this year are sequels. I think Back To The Future was spot on with this.

And by the way the Jaws film was in Holomax 3D which is close enough to 3D. 3D is still a popular way to see a movie and was definitely spot on. 3D has come a long ways from when Back To The Future was made.

One of the posters in the alley says to surf Vietnam. On the BTTF blue ray special features Spielberg said he laughed at that one when they made the movie and here we are.

At the Dinner table Marty's son and daughter answer the phone or see who is calling with their glasses. Although Google Glass isn't a phone it is very simular and can connect to your phone.

Café 80s, I love the Goldbergs show which has a lot of jokes you would only get if you grew up in the 80s. Movies based off of stuff from the 80s is in full force and making a lot of money. We love nostalgia.

I could keep going but I'll have to stop. BTTF 2 would be fun and with October right around the corner and it is classic and current.

Best of luck at your presentation.

Stephen Smith

Utah Video Productions

Check out my Vimeo page

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Jeff Breuer
Re: Pecha-Kucha Movie
on Jun 25, 2015 at 4:19:47 pm

I think Stephen has a great idea to run with BTTF2 in 2015. Personally, I would pick a silent film. City Lights, Sunrise: A Song of Two Humans, Nosferatu or Buster Keaton in general. I think a lot of people are scared to watch silent films today but there are so many of these great gems. Keaton, especially if you can find a film with a good soundtrack is still really easy to watch today. So is Chaplin. But that's me...

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Stephen Smith
Re: Pecha-Kucha Movie
on Jun 25, 2015 at 5:02:55 pm


I think a lot of people are scared to watch silent films today

I agree with that. I think most people don't want to watch movies that where made before they where born. I haven't really seen any silent films and The Gold Rush was on Netflix and I thought since I'm a movie guy I really should watch a silent film. It was really good and I enjoyed it.

Stephen Smith

Utah Video Productions

Check out my Vimeo page

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Mark Suszko
Re: Pecha-Kucha Movie
on Jun 25, 2015 at 5:50:09 pm

People (including my kids) are afraid to watch a B&W movie, FWIW. I was showing Kane to my wife, my younger son came in and stayed for the whole thing, he liked it. My daughter OTOH used to think you could only watch B&W movies on an old TV. Tried to show her Casablanca, she could not stand the "slow" pace.

Pecha-kucha means "chit-chat" in Japanese. It's a world-wide movement in entertainment, you should see if there's one in your town. Twenty slides, each exactly 20 seconds long, no stopping, go straight thru. 10 presentations with a beer and meal break in the middle kills 2 hours very nicely. Don't fancy one of the presenters? They're only 7 minutes the next one's bound to be better. One of the presentations involves someone live-improving a presentation around 20 random slides they've never seen before; that's a hoot. If you told me three years ago people arrange date nights and group outings to go see someone's powerpoint deck, I'd say you were insane, but check it out sometime.

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Tim Wilson
Re: Pecha-Kucha Movie
on Jun 26, 2015 at 12:37:36 am
Last Edited By Tim Wilson on Jun 26, 2015 at 12:47:08 am

[Mark Suszko] "Tried to show her Casablanca, she could not stand the "slow" pace.

I could make a case that it's also not deserving of the praise it gets. I won't, but I could. I think that's the point of reappraisal. Some boats, some sink.

You know what sinks on reappraisal? Maybe every screwball comedy pre-Bogdanovich's What's Up Doc? (1972)

As a genre, fast as lightning. MUCH faster spoken and cut than virtually any movie today. But they're all terrible. It Happened One Night -- "What she needs is a guy that'd take a sock at her once a day, whether it's coming to her or not." Philadelphia Story -- not only a TACIT endorsement of adultery, but the only ssoliloquyin the movie ENDORSES it, and tells women that they need to forgive it in men, because men NEEEEEED it. The Thin Man: non-stop ddrunkenness and the only contribution of Myrna Loy's Nora Charles to the plot is getting punched in the face so hard that it knocks her out for no other reason than to provide a distraction.

On. And. On. And. On. TERRIBLE movies morally, and just not funny.

Okay, one exception I can think of -- Some Like it Hot. Not offensive, some sharp writing, but really, there's almost no plot whatsoever. I'm of course a HUGE fan of no plot. Plots are entirely overrated...but you have to go into this one KNOWING that the ONLY reason to watch is the performances of the four leads, some wit, one song, and an ending that's kind of sweet, but has even less connection to the movie than the rest of the movie has no plot.

I might evenually come up with an exception or two, but otherwise, no need to ever show a kid a screwball comedy, except as an example of how horrible Hollywood used to be, especially to women, but really, a dim view of men, too.


Dude, no way would I put Die Hard on a list like this. It's great fun, but you can summarize it in four slides, not 20, and I object to parts of the ending. So yes, underrated, deserves study, but for a pk presentation, not even close to my list.

[Jeff Breuer] "Personally, I would pick a silent film. City Lights, "

FANASTIC choice. I love its non-romantic love that's really, ultimately, too deep to be contained by romance. The tramp loves the blind girl selflessly, wants nothing more than for her to see again, but afraid it will be the end of them...but of course it's not. But they're not in lerrrrve. Beautifully shot too.

My #1 by far is Stranger Than Fiction, which is also #3 on my all-time list, period.

Fun for your purposes, Mark: FOUR women with meaningfully-sized speaking parts, ALL different, all interesting, and a romance that's both unconventional and plausible because of the NUANCE, rather than it being piled artificially into the plot You've Got Mail-style.

(BTW, you think 4 women with speaking parts isn't a big deal? After Bridesmaids and The Women, name another with even THREE women with plot-driving roles, none of whom is the best friend of the romantic lead. Can you do it? I sure can't.)

Emma Thompson's character is a novelist literally drives the plot, Queen Latifah plays an astonishingly calmly intimidating yet supportive role driving the driver, Linda Hunt has a small but charming role as a psychologist trying to help unravel the central mystery.

Most important, Maggie Gyllenhall has the charisma to fly beyond the limits of conventional romance, intentionally mocking Will Ferrel's idea of her quirkiness (she's actually not quirky at all), and with the power to drive the plot far past Will's character's imagination.

Dustin Hoffman's best part since Rain Man, period. Will Ferrell is a revelation in a quietly dramatic role as a man who finds life in embracing his death, with a twist you'll never see coming.

It's a movie of unparalleled generosity to the human spirit, and the kindness in the complexity of unraveling the truth about oneself that other people see in your before you see it yourself. It's about other people accepting your limitations before you know how to accept them yourself.

Love, but NOT a love story, and really, not that kind of love at all.

Also worth noting -- best use of motion graphics in a narrative film EVER.

Also worth noting -- best use of a song as a plot point in a narrative film EVER. That it's from Wreckless Eric is merely a bonus.

I cannot cannot CAN NOT recommend this highly enough. Enough praise for this film does not exist. Praise praise praise.

I'd have cut the trailer much, much differently though. For one, it uses the one scene with Maggie Gyllenhall acting quirky, and she's doing it specifically as a gag to rile up other characters. Has nothing to do with her in the actual movie. A shame. Anyway...

That's about 20 slides right there. You're welcome. LOL

The other one I'd kick around is The Visitor, Tom McCarthy's follow-up to The Station Agent. OOooh, another fantastic choice starring Peter Dinklage, Bobby Canavale and Patricia Clarkson in quiet, gentle roles you've never imagined they could pull off. Flawless, stem to stern. The more I think about this, the more I love it as a choice to put in the mix though.

I'm still going to lean to The Visitor, which brought Richard Jenkins an Oscar nom. McCarthy thought about how much he loves Jenkins, and how powerful he could be in the right role...then set out to write him the right role. (He did the same thing for Dinklage, who'd only kicked around in minor indie roles before that.)

This is incredibly moving, with a surprising turn from Danai Gurira, so amazing as Michonne on The Walking Dead. A LOT of love and loss here. This is a much better trailer, but the mother of one of the characters gets a LOT more coverage in the trailer than she gets in the movie (she's terrific though), at the expense of the relationship between the characters of Jenkins and Gurira, which is in some ways the heart of the picture. But overall, a good trailer.

I'm still going to smile brightly if The Station Agent wins. A beatiful tale of love forcing its way into your life against your wishes (BUT NOT ROMANTIC LOVE), and the way family forms itself without you even necessarily liking each other. LOL Superlative films, both of them, but what the hey. The trailer is still whackier than the movie, but you'll get the idea:

Of course, if you're trying to go light, rather than "here's great stuff from people you know, doing stuff you didn't know they could do that's really heartwarming if occassionally emotionally demanding" LOL then two better choices:

Heaven Can Wait (1978). SEE? I CAN BE ROMANTIC. Nominated for 10 Oscars, won one, and still desperately underrated.

Dyan Cannon goes way beyond the stereotype of shrew, terrific turn by Julie Christie, plus priceless supporting roles for (especially) Charles Grodin, Jack Warden, Buck Henry (Oscar-nominated for his script), and a brief but heartbreaking appearance from James Mason.

I really do think What's Up Doc is a charmer, and miiight give it the nod. Considered a comeback for both Barbara Streisand and Ryan O'Neal, a delightful twist on screwball-ism with one of the great chase scenes of all time. Very loosely based on Bringing Up Baby, but faster and funnier. (Yes, Streisand funnier than Hepburn. Yes, Ryan O'Neal as a funnier straight man than Cary Grant. Admittedly makes less sense, but as I said, plot is way, way overrated.)

Features the screen debuts of Madeline Khan who KILLS -- absolutely stunning -- Austin Pendleton, John Hillerman, and Kenneth Mars, a virtual murderer's row of "Oh yeah, THAT Guy" actors.

This was the first movie I saw more than once in the theater -- 5 times, which in the days before Star Wars was unheard of. People were sure I was insane, which turned out to be the case, but it bore rewatching because of how many lines the audience laughed over. It took me 5 tries to even hear the whole thing.

I infected my family with this, and it's now the movie we've watched collectively watched most often, as individuals and as all of us combined.

With, interestingly enough, Heaven Can Wait not too too far behind -- the SECOND movie I saw more than once in the theater.

I should note that my 22-ish year old niece and nephew have watched both of these many times over their lives, and count both among their favorites ever.

So, a much longer list than I'd intended, with the net effect still being Stranger Than Fiction alone at the top, but a handful of choices that I think will truly surprise and delight people, and make them excited to see these pictures ASAP.

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Mark Suszko
Re: Pecha-Kucha Movie
on Jun 26, 2015 at 2:07:01 am

Actually, you gave me another idea:

"That Guy" actors

(Also "That Woman" actors).

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Tim Wilson
Re: Pecha-Kucha Movie
on Jun 26, 2015 at 5:54:48 am

[Mark Suszko] "Actually, you gave me another idea:

"That Guy" actors "

A movie on that very subject from 1996. When did 1996 get to be nearly 20 years ago??? But a good start....for the time.

Here's a list from 2012 that's also woefully out of date. #1 is JK Simmons and #3 is Clark Gregg, neither of whom is really "that guy" as much as they were. And a couple of the greats on that list have passed, most notably to me, JT Walsh.

You'll find many, many of these lists, some more useful than others, but two of the giants for me are missing from every one of these that I've seen: Danny Trejo and (you guessed it) Michael Ironside.

But yeah, a great idea. I think it'd also be nifty as its own thread in this very forum.

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Mark Suszko
Re: Pecha-Kucha Movie
on Jun 26, 2015 at 2:15:23 pm

Robert Loggia used to be a "that guy!" actor. If you go WAAAAAAAAy back in time, to 1966, he starred in a TV series called T.H.E Cat, where he essentially played a circus acrobat/catburglar turned do-gooder/bodyguard.

Picture the lanky physical grace of James Coburn with the bad-assedness of Lee van Cleef. Wait... you don't have to:

Groovy title sequence, too!

Thanks, Robert Loggia!

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