Tag Archives: three o’clock high

An (Imaginary) Interview with Steven Spielberg

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I’m not really sitting with you right now, Steven Spielberg, but I want to be.  There’s really nothing I could think of that would be more of an achievement.  To be honest, I don’t think about your movies enough anymore, and I don’t reference you enough in my pieces on this site.  It’s because talking about you is kind of old hat.  You are unequivocally the most successful, and the most household name-y of any movie director in history.  You created my childhood, and millions upon millions of other childhoods.  Your name had as much market value in the 80s and 90s as McDonald’s and Reebok.  (I made that last sentence up but it sounds real!)

So anyway, yeah, I’m sitting here (not really) with the most iconic living legend filmmaker of all time, Steven Spielberg:
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An Interview with James Merendino, Writer/Director of SLC Punk (But First, A Review Of The Film)

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SLC Punk (1998)
Written & Directed by James Merendino
97 min.

I could never identify the groups in my high school.  We certainly had some jocks, potheads, and even a few hanger-on goths.  But punks, I don’t know.  We had a kid with a mohawk; he was a fucking asshole.  And we had a bunch of kids who loved punk music—a lot of them had safety pins in their clothes and dyed hair, but they seemed to really like some band called AFI, which I always thought was the American Film Institute.  By the time I was in high school, punk music had completely soaked into the mainstream and everybody had heard of Pennywise and Bad Religion.  It was in vogue to go see Henry Rollins do his spoken word shows in Ann Arbor, and if you were really cool, you already liked Bad Brains and Minor Threat.

I didn’t care about any of that stuff and I was tired of every local band sounding like Green Day.  I was like the James Duval character in SLC Punk—the social diplomat.  I could be friends with anybody.  I was too busy getting into movies and figuring out my own depression to bother committing to some specific clique.  Plus, the fashion of punk seemed so childish to me.  It’s music; I don’t wear it, I listen to it.  But that being said, we didn’t have nazis or rednecks either.  Well, everywhere has rednecks, but our punks didn’t beat them with bats.  Our punks were nice kids (except for that mohawked loser) and they got good grades and loved their parents.  They went to Michigan State University and were proud to do so.
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Netflix Quickies #2 (The Imposter, Bully, Frankie & Johnny, Hiding Out, Antichrist)

Alright so whenever I go on Netflix Instant I just sorta pick random movies from my queue, try them for a few minutes, and then if I’m not feeling them moving on to another until I finally find one I don’t hate, and then I watch that one. This ‘Netflix Quickies’ thing is basically a series where I just talk about movies I decided not to watch after some amount of minutes and explain exactly what turned me off about them. Here goes:

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The Imposter (2012)
Directed by Bart Layton
99 min. (Gave up after 7 min.)
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Three O’Clock High: Where Has This Movie Been All My Life?

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Three O’Clock High (1987)
Directed by Phil Joanou
Written by Richard Christian Matheson & Thomas E. Szollosi
101 min.

Spoiler-free (is the way to be!)

I hadn’t heard of this one until Greg mentioned it in his Husbands essay. And then the title kept swimming around in my head after that, for some reason. And then about a week ago, I was scrolling through the guide on my TV, and bam, there it was, about to start, on one of the movie channels. So I DVR’d it. (When the universe strongly suggests, through synchronicity, that I watch something, I abide, like a good little God-in-embryo.)
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The Idea of What a Movie Is: A Very Greg Journey Through Film

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A movie.

Security camera footage is not a movie, but screened at a film festival with a name like ‘Big Brother’s Kung Fu Grip’ (or some artsy crap) it is.  Andy Warhol filming the Empire State Building for nine hours is a movie—the video the real estate agent showed you of the interior of the house on Maple is not.  It’s all about context and intention.
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