Anonymous said: Which movies do you think are essential to watch for any movie buff?
hey! here’re a few lists people have asked me to make in the past that might be helpful
- top five films from each decade starting with the 60s that every film major should see
- movies that you feel every film lover HAS to see
- favorite films of the last 100 years with one from each year
- also check out this list by jim emerson”102 movies to become film literate" i’m trying to work through it rn
The “pre-Code era” refers to a roughly five-year period in film history, beginning with the widespread adoption of sound in 1929 and ending on July 1, 1934, with the inauguration of the Production Code Administration and a policy of rigid censorship. Before July 1, 1934, restrictions on movie content varied widely, depending on local laws, mores and public taste. As a result, “pre-Code films” tend to be racier, sexier, more adult, more cynical, more socially critical, more honest and more politically strident than the films produced by Hollywood on up through the early 1960s.
1929. The Broadway Melody | WATCH / DOWNLOAD
1929. The Cocoanuts | WATCH / DOWNLOAD
1929. Glorifying the American Girl | WATCH
1929. The Love Parade | WATCH
1929. The Last of Mrs. Cheyney | WATCH
1929. Redskin | WATCH / DOWNLOAD
1929. Rio Rita | WATCH
1930. All Quiet on the Western Front | WATCH / DOWNLOAD
1930. Animal Crackers | WATCH / DOWNLOAD
1930. Anna Christie | WATCH / DOWNLOAD PT.1 & PT.2 & PT.3 & PT.4
1930. The Blue Angel | WATCH / DOWNLOAD
1930. The Divorcee | WATCH
1930. Hell’s Angels | WATCH / DOWNLOAD
1930. Ladies of Leisure | WATCH
1930. Morocco | WATCH / DOWNLOAD
1930. Min And Bill | WATCH
1930. Monte Carlo | WATCH
1930. Raffles | WATCH
1931. Arrowsmith | WATCH
1931. City Streets | WATCH / DOWNLOAD
1931. Dishonored | WATCH
1931. Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde | WATCH / DOWNLOAD
1931. Dracula | WATCH / DOWNLOAD
1931. Private Lives | WATCH
1931. Five Star Final | WATCH
1931. Frankenstein | WATCH / DOWNLOAD
1931. Little Caesar | WATCH / DOWNLOAD
1931. The Maltese Falcon | WATCH / DOWNLOAD
1931. Mata Hari | WATCH / DOWNLOAD
1931. Night Nurse | WATCH / DOWNLOAD
1931. Platinum Blonde | WATCH / DOWNLOAD
1931. Possessed | WATCH
1931. Iron Man | DOWNLOAD
1931. The Public Enemy | WATCH / DOWNLOAD
1931. Smart Money | WATCH / DOWNLOAD
1931. The Smiling Lieutenant | WATCH / DOWNLOAD
1931. Susan Lenox (Her Fall and Rise) | DOWNLOAD PT.1 & PT.2
1932. A Farewell to Arms | WATCH / DOWNLOAD
1932. Blonde Venus | WATCH / DOWNLOAD
1932. Devil and the Deep | WATCH / DOWNLOAD
1932. Freaks | WATCH / DOWNLOAD
1932. Grand Hotel | WATCH / DOWNLOAD
1932. Horse Feathers | WATCH / DOWNLOAD
1932. The Mummy | WATCH / DOWNLOAD
1932. Murders in the Rue Morgue | WATCH / DOWNLOAD
1932. One Way Passage | WATCH
1932. Rain | WATCH / DOWNLOAD
1932. Red Dust | WATCH / DOWNLOAD
1932. Scarface | WATCH / DOWNLOAD
1932. Shanghai Express | WATCH / DOWNLOAD
1932. Shopworn | WATCH
1932. Tarzan the Ape Man | WATCH / DOWNLOAD
1932. Three on a Match | WATCH / DOWNLOAD
1932. Trouble in Paradise | WATCH / DOWNLOAD
1929. The Most Dangerous Game | WATCH / DOWNLOAD
1932. No Man of Her Own | WATCH
1932. The Old Dark House | WATCH / DOWNLOAD
1933. 42nd Street | WATCH / DOWNLOAD
1933. Baby Face | WATCH / DOWNLOAD
1933. The Bitter Tea of General Yen | WATCH
1933. Design for Living | WATCH / DOWNLOAD
1933. Duck Soup | WATCH / DOWNLOAD
1933. The Emperor Jones | WATCH / DOWNLOAD
1933. Footlight Parade | WATCH / DOWNLOAD
1933. I’m No Angel | WATCH / DOWNLOAD
1933. King Kong | WATCH / DOWNLOAD
1933. Ladies They Talk About | WATCH
1933. The Mayor of Hell | WATCH / DOWNLOAD
1933. Mystery of the Wax Museum | WATCH / DOWNLOAD
1933. She Done Him Wrong | WATCH / DOWNLOAD
1933. The Story of Temple Drake | WATCH
1934. The Black Cat | WATCH / DOWNLOAD
1934. Cleopatra | WATCH / DOWNLOAD
1934. Dames | WATCH / DOWNLOAD
1934. The Gay Divorcee | WATCH / DOWNLOAD
1934. It Happened One Night | WATCH / DOWNLOAD
1934. Of Human Bondage | WATCH / DOWNLOAD
1934. Tarzan and His Mate | WATCH / DOWNLOAD
1934. The Thin Man | WATCH / DOWNLOAD
1934. The Merry Widow | WATCH / DOWNLOAD
Thought to have been lost for decades, the two-minute feature Virginian Types: Blue Ridge Mountaineers documents the life of an isolated and long-vanished mountain community—Old Rag, Virginia—using a similarly long-vanished color process called “Pathécolor"—a stencil-based method that added artificial colors to black-and-white prints, something like the colorization of recent years.
The footage seems to have been shot just after Congress in May of 1926 authorized the creation of the Shenandoah National Park. Congress had stipulated that Virginia could turn over to the federal government only lands that were free of permanent inhabitants. Most residents of the Old Rag settlement were longtime squatters with no legal record of their holdings. As a consequence, an administration was installed to “relocate” the startled mountain folk, who reacted to the uprooting in anguished grief.
Virginian Types appears to have been the one of the “last chances” to document Old Rag and its surrounding communities, as on November 1st, 1935 all remaining residents were given 10 days’ notice. By the middle of the month the last holdouts were led away in handcuffs.
The cabin structures seen in the footage—some having been built in the early 1800s—would be burned or demolished, ostensibly to restore wilderness but also to discourage reoccupation. All that appears to remain of the lost community is this unique film, echoing a place where “Life is ardent, pleasures simple…”
Drawing from films
Drawing from films is a ridiculously useful exercise. It’s not enough to watch films; it’s not enough to look at someone else’s drawings from films. If you want to be in story, there’s no excuse for not doing this.
The way this works: you draw tons of tiny little panels, tiny enough that you won’t be tempted to fuss about drawing details. You put on a movie - I recommend Raiders, E.T., or Jaws… but honestly if there’s some other movie you love enough to freeze frame the shit out of, do what works for you. It’s good to do this with a movie you already know by heart.
Hit play. Every time there’s a cut, you hit pause, draw the frame, and hit play til it cuts again. If there’s a pan or camera move, draw the first and last frames.
Note on movies: Spielberg is great for this because he’s both evocative and efficient. Michael Bay is good at what he does, but part of what he does is cut so often that you will be sorry you picked his movie to draw from. Haneke is magnificent at what he does, but cuts so little that you will wind up with three drawings of a chair. Peter Jackson… he’s great, but not efficient. If you love a Spielberg movie enough to spend a month with it, do yourself a favor and use Spielberg.
What to look for:
- Foreground, middle ground, background: where is the character? What is the point of the shot? What is it showing? What’s being used as a framing device? How does that help tie this shot into the geography of the scene? Is the background flat, or a location that lends itself to depth?
- Composition: How is the frame divided? What takes up most of the space? How are the angles and lines in the shot leading your eye?
- Reusing setups, economy: Does the film keep coming back to the same shot? The way liveaction works, that means they set up the camera and filmed one long take from that angle. Sometimes this includes a camera move, recomposing one long take into what look like separate shots. If you pay attention, you can catch them.
- Camera position, angle, height: Is the camera fixed at shoulder height? Eye height? Sitting on the floor? Angled up? Down? Is it shooting straight on towards a wall, or at an angle? Does it favor the floor or the ceiling?
- Lenses: wide-angle lens or long lens? Basic rule of thumb: If the character is large in frame and you can still see plenty of their surroundings, the lens is wide and the character is very close to camera. If the character’s surroundings seem to dwarf them, the lens is long (zoomed in).
- Lighting: Notice it, but don’t draw it. What in the scene is lit? How is this directing your eye? How many lights? Do they make sense in the scene, or do they just FEEL right?
This seems like a lot to keep in mind, and honestly, don’t worry about any of that. Draw 100 thumbnails at a time, pat yourself on the back, and you will start to notice these things as you go.
Don’t worry about the drawings, either. You can see from my drawings that these aren’t for show. They’re notes to yourself. They’re strictly for learning.
Now get out there and do a set! Tweet me at @lawnrocket and I’ll give you extra backpats for actually following through on it. Just be aware - your friends will look at you super weird when you start going off about how that one shot in Raiders was a pickup - it HAD to be - because it doesn’t make sense except for to string these other two shots together…