Thursday, September 27, 2012


You know it's gonna be a good movie when...
  1. An amazingly fake dancing gopher is the first character you're introduced to.
  2. Bill Murray, Chevy Chase and Rodney Dangerfield are in it. 
  3. The soundtrack is by Kenny Loggins.
  4. One of the main characters is named Danny.
  5. There's a funny puke scene right off the bat.

And this was just in the first half hour—Caddyshack, you did not disappoint. Thanks for being such a riot.

Monday, September 24, 2012

Pulp Fiction: The Drinking Game

After my less than stellar review of Fight Club and my girlish appal to the entire concept of such a movie, many of you have warned me not to watch Pulp Fiction. While I'm fairly certain that your judgement on what I will and will not enjoy is probably spot on, somehow your warnings have only made me even more determined to watch it (yes, apparently I'm 5 years old).

Because I'm predicting that I'll be horrified for the majority of it, I figured I should at least have a little fun here, right? Enter, Pulp Fiction: The Drinking Game.

Since I've never seen the movie, I was a little unsure of what rules to set, so I searched around online for ideas. What do you Pulp Fiction buffs think of this one? I'm open for additions/subtractions:
  1. Drink 1 each time Someone gets killed (even if not from a gun).
  2. Drink 1 each time any of the main characters does any type of drug.
  3. Drink 1 each time any main character says “Fuck”.
  4. Drink 1 each time the word, “Chopper” or “Motorcycle” is said.
Sondra and Tony, this sounds like a good pre-wedding activity, eh?

Citizen Kane

My god, I love old movies. And I guess since it's 2012 now and movies aren't really "new" anymore, I should probably specify what I mean by old—I'm talkin' black and white films from the 1940's and 50's, starring the likes of Jimmy Stewart and Katherine Hepburn (just to name a few, of course). The funny old-timey accents, the lingo, the outfits, the hairdos, the wholesome plotlines, the lack of special effects—just everything. Sigh…

So, where I'm going with this is that I watched Citizen Kane last night. Ahhh, that's more like it. I'd rather watch Orson Wells play a millionaire newspaper tycoon than have to sit through Brad Pitt disfiguring a bunch of guys any day. And while Dan and I both generally enjoyed it (although I may have caught him snoozing through a few scenes), we were a little curious as to what makes it widely considered one of the best films of all time.

From a little "Googling", it seems that what makes it so noteworthy is a lot of behind the scenes stuff like the production, cinematography, storytelling techniques, and soundtrack. Or at least that's what Wikipedia says, true or false?

3 down and 7 to go though (eek). I have a busy week of movie watching ahead of me indeed...

and omg, how beautiful is this typography? LOVE.

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Today's Movie Haul

Today's movie haul from the Watertown Free Public Library:

How psyched am I that #1, they had all of these from my list, and #2, that renting them was free. Oh yeah, the library...

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Just because...

I thought I'd take a quiz to see how many of the American Film Institute's Top 100 Movies I've seen. My score wasn't actually too, too terrible (considering that it's me we're talking about here), but it looks like the final tally was 30 out of 100.

Not too embarrassing, right? The only thing that got me such a "high" number in the first place was my "I'm obsessed with black and white movies from my grandmother's generation" phase in high school. At least there's that.

Now back to more awful movies from the 90's...

Monday, September 17, 2012

"The List"

As expected, I've had plenty of feedback on the list of movies I choose to watch. So much so that I'm beginning to think that movies are as hot button of a topic as politics or religion because people have been pretty intense about their opinions:

"Omg, DO NOT watch that one"
"Wait, why wasn't this movie on the list?"
"You have to watch this one too"
"Who made this list? You aren't going to like any of those"
"Let me make the list for you"

and on, and on…

While I do appreciate all your comments and concerns, let me go over again how this list was made in the first place. My goal was to watch films that I though were sort of essential to have seen, not movies I necessarily thought I'd love. I wanted a mix of cult classics, classics (that's why Citizen Kane is on there), and then just a few others that people are always shocked I haven't seen. And for the record, the following movies aren't on the list because I've already seen them: Ferris Bueller's Day Off, The Breakfast Club, Pretty in Pink, Sixteen Candles, The Princes Bride, Dazed and Confused, Empire Records, Mall Rats, and Clerks.

So, I'm sticking to my original list, however I have decided to swap out Spaceballs for Caddyshack, because I'm 98% sure I won't like Spaceballs, and about 85% sure I'll like Caddyshack better.

And in other news, I watched The Matrix last night. While it was definitely much more tolerable than Fight Club, and I did enjoy the Jersey Shore-style unnecessary sunglasses wearing, and use of antiquated technology like flip phones and floppy discs, let's be honest—it was kind of ridiculous. Luckily, I was pretty beat last night anyways, so those 2 hours of my life that I lost wouldn't have been spent doing anything better.

2 down, 8 to go...

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Fight Club: A Review By Someone Who Doesn't Like Movies and Who Knows Nothing About Them

So, um, I watched Fight Club last night…


Yeah, well, considering that I'm a total girl and that I hate fighting, violence, and watching or even thinking about anything that's effed up, I'm not really surprised that I didn't love this one. I'm also not surprised that I had to look away for about 25% of it.

It started out good enough. There was a guy who hated his mundane job (been there, check!), he had lots of furniture from Ikea (I love Ikea too, I can relate to this!), then there were funny scenes of support groups and Meat Loaf was there too, and there were even a few notable quotes from Brad Pitt's character like:

"The things you own end up owning you", and "Working jobs we hate so we can buy things we don't need".

And I was introduced to the term, "Single Serving Friend": A friend you meet once, for example on a plane, and never see again. Brilliant.

But then it sort of went downhill from there for me. Lots of fighting and disfiguring and dismembering and other repulsive things that totally grossed me out. I'm pretty sure the horrified look on my face made it look like I was getting the shit kicked out of me too.

I get the whole "abandoning consumer culture" thing, and that's great and all, but for me, the most redeeming part of the movie was when everything blew up in the end and The Pixies started playing. At least The Pixies were there to save me (and Fanne too, who apparently loves movies because she sat 2" from my face the entire time).

So, that's that, I guess. 1 down and 9 to go. I hope my poor, movie-loving boyfriend can handle putting up with my asinine commentary and general disdain for the rest of the month. Oh boy...

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

My DVD Collection

Just to reiterate how "not a movie person" I am, here's the extent of my DVD collection (I definitely laughed out loud when I saw how pathetic this is):

1. Heima, a Sigur Ros film
2. It's a Wonderful Life, a Dzenawagis family Christmas classic
3. Swing Kids, I wore out my VHS copy of this in high school

I think I used to have copies of Amelie, Lost in Translation, and Garden State as well, but since they've somehow disappeared, my DVD collection officially consists of a whopping 3 movies.  Hahaha, really?

Monday, September 10, 2012

September's Lent: 10 in 21

Ok, ok, ok, so it's 10 days into September and I've been totally 12MOL MIA. I know, I know…so, what's the deal?

Well, what happened was that I started a new challenge for September and about 3 days into it I realized it was kind of a flop. I knew going into it that it was going to be a total hit or miss and, well—it was a miss. Hey, you win some you lose some, right? Moving on...

So, what now? I considered taking a month off but I decided to ask around to see if anyone had any cool ideas for me. The winner? Mr. Dan Kaplan for suggesting a "movie challenge".

This probably sounds way too easy, right? Not if you're Danne Dzenawagis. When I meet new people, there's 2 things that I can say that immediately make them dislike me:

Thing #1: "I hate movies"
Thing #2: "I hate dogs"

Ok, so hate is a strong word and it isn't entirely true in this case. I don't hate movies, I just hardly ever watch them because I have the attention span of a goldfish, and I don't actually hate dogs, I generally just dislike about 99% of them. And I mean, who needs a dog when you have a cat that's the size of one?

But anyways, my challenge this month is to finally suck it up and watch a bunch of the movies that I definitely should have seen at some point in my life. This list was complied over the weekend at our friend Kelly's house with the help of a bunch of movie buffs, including the Sullivan Sisters, who really thought long and hard about what was and wasn't important for me to see based on the list of the 12 movies that I actually have seen.

So, here they are, the 10 movies that I will be watching over the next 21 days. Don't make fun of me, I've never seen any of these. And please don't suggest more, watching this many movies in a month is kind of torturous, this is already way more than I can handle.

1. Citizen Kane
2. Usual Suspects
3. Pulp Fiction
4. Fight Club
5. Matrix
6. Say Anything
7. Spaceballs
8. Animal House
9. Legends of the Fall
10. Top Gun

Thank god there's only 21 days in this challenge, and thank god it's knitting season again so I have something to do while I have to sit through all these. Movie party anyone?

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

The Wallet Diet: Over and Out

Well, it looks like somehow it's September already and that my miserly living, money-saving, Wallet Diet challenge can officially come to a close—or at least, I wish it could come to a close. Through all the scrimping and saving that I did this month, one thing that I discovered was that unfortunately, at this point in my financial times, $100 a week is all I really should be spending if I want to stay on track. Hmpf…

But the good news? It actually wasn't that all that hard to live off $100 a week. Once I regulated my grocery expenditures, stopped eating out, bought a month-long supply of 3 Buck Chuck, found a less expensive litter that I liked (I mean, that Fanne liked), filled up at the cheapest gas station, froze my credit card spending, and generally just curbed my impulse purchases and paid much more attention to where my money was going, I got by on a lot less than I thought I could. I even had extra money each week, which admittedly, all went to lululemon. Hey, we all have our vices, right?

So now what? I'm sticking with this one, at least for a while because it definitely whipped me back into financial shape. My credit card is staying in the freezer, my budget is staying at $100 a week, and I'm going to continue to be critical and smart about my spending.  The Wallet Diet isn't a "fad diet"—it's more like a way of life.

And if you're looking for a little inspiration to kick-start your own money-saving challenge, here's a great list that I found today on the 50 Best Money-Saving Blogs

Next Up? "Do What's Right" September. Crytpic, I know...