Godzilla's Revenge, Again

I've written of this gem of a film before, but I wanted to reiterate what a wonderful evocation of loneliness it is, especially in how it deals with childhood.

The lead character of the film is a latchkey kid in an industrial wasteland. He has to deal with bullies and gangsters, and to do so he makes an invisible world that only he can enter. His hero becomes Minya, the son of Godzilla.

In the film, Minya can talk, as well as blow smoke rings and change his size at will. Only The Curse Of The Cat People puts one into the loneliness of youth as well.

Here we see the film's opening, and it's a raucous opening, intended to appeal to young boys:

Here is the trailer:

Note the old man in the film, and the creepy suggestions of a more than grandfatherly intent toward the baseball capped boy. This is one of those films that, whether intentionally or not, gave far more out to the masses than could rightfully be expected. And the film's end, while sunny (or seemingly so) is quite realistic, for, despite making pals with the bullies that harass him, and foiling the gangsters, the lead character, Ichiro, ends up with a life that is still an urban industrial hell.

Such is life in film when done so unfortunately well.

King Kong Vs. Godzilla

Ok, here it is (albeit in black and white trailer vs. color film). This is the film that took the monster vs. monster genre to new heights, literally. No more Dracula against the Wolfman crap, or Frankenstein meets the Invisible Man. This was mano a mano monster.

In America, King Kong bested Godzy, although the filmmakers had to give Kong powers he lacked in the original film, plus making Kong about ten times bigger. They also made Godzy more evil looking than in other films. It was clearly a Japanese sellout to try to make it big in American markets. And it worked.

Legend has it that there was a Japanese version of the film in which Godzilla kicked the King's ass. But, the supposed version of the film has never been found, despite being thought of as the 'Director's Cut'.

Let's face it, though, in reality (and let us fancify it), there is no way Kong could have beaten Godzy. The Big Green Stomper would have simply fried Kong's fur off.

Oh well, leave it to me to root against my own country's hero.


King Kong (1933)

Movie monster camps split into two fairly equal portions over which monster is the greatest in film history: America's King Kong or Japan's Godzilla. Forget the 1960s set-to between them (it was rigged in Kong's favor)- Godzilla rules!

But, Kong came first, so give him his due. The 1976 and 2006 remakes pale in comparison.

Here's a peek at one of the climactic moments:


R&J (per Baz)

Ok, so it's not exactly a musical, and it's not a great film, but the 1996 film, Romeo And Juliet, by Baz Luhrmann- of Moulin Rouge fame) is still an interesting and daring film that succeeds more than it fails. And,a s updates go, it's at least as good as West Side Story, and certainly more daring. No?



Ok; apologies to all other musicals, but Hair was THE great hippy musical. Of course, silly tale, but great songs.

Born in February, you know I heard this song over and over as a child:

The title song, hair, is not as good as many others. But, this is the other signature song of Hair:

Jesus Christ Superstar

Ok, while musicals are in the air, there are two I have to mention, having grown up in the 1960s and 1970s.

The first is Hair, which I'll post on later. The second is Jesus Christ Superstar.

Let's admit, up front, that the musicals of the hippy era blew away the Rodgers and Hammerstein era musicals. First, in energy, second, in music, and third, in revolutionary spirit.

Note, in this film version, we get the great choice of Judas Iscariot as a black man. Talk about in your face:

Now, here is another version of the song, from season 7 of American Idol:

Carly Smithson (nee Hennessy) should have finished much higher than she did that season- poor song choices and an inability to recognize her strengths doomed her.

Andrew Lloyd Webber is one of the great rock composers of the last 40 years.



Since Dan has been writing about musicals, I had to post about Rent. I recommend watching the movie where there is a great documentary about the writer/composer Jonathan Larson who had to work for a decade to promote himself and send his stuff out there. He faced rejection after rejection and waited tables for a living, thus composing music for 8 hours a day on his days off.

Rent isn't a particularly great story, but Larson is a great composer and song writer, thus making it a great musical. Poor Larson was waiting for his positive review in the NYT and when it finally opened on Broadway, he got it, and then went home that night and died at the age of 35.

Here's a clip with Mimi singing "Out Tonight," (played by Rosario Dawson). This is Dan's favorite clip. I'm sure after watching you can see why. I want those badass boots!

She makes me want to be a stripper. So here's the clip already:

Fred Astaire's Babes

Ok, we know he's got ritz.

But, which of his main squeezes was a) hotter, and b) the better dancer?

Here is Ginger Rogers:

Ok, we all know Fred Astaire:

And here she is hoofing:

Fred's second babe was Cyd Charisse. Here she is:

And here she is hoofing:

My vote? Cyd, all the way- better looking, sexier, and better dancer.

Any questions?

More Gene Kelly And....

In my last post I may have sounded as if I disliked Gene Kelly, the dancer. No. I just disliked his films. Unlike Fred Astaire, he did not even have nice looking steady female dance partners.

But he did have partners. His most famous was Jerry Mouse, of Tom & Jerry fame, in the 1945 film Anchors Aweigh.

But, the great tv cartoon, Family Guy remade his dance scene with an even BETTER partner!

Witness side-by-side for a comparison:

Singin' In The Rain

My mom and dad loved the dance films of Gene Kelly, Fred Astaire, and
the like.

I did not. These were generally mushy, brain-dead films- i.e.- the precursors of the crap that Lucas, Spielberg, and their descendants would foist upon the world decades later.

Singin' In The Rain is a particularly silly piece of fluff. Gene Kelly never excited me, although I saw these films as a child, on tv, with my parents still rapt by the aura of Classic Hollywood.

Here's the signature song and dance number:


Seuss meets Stanley Kubrick

Here’s a strange little featurette I recall seeing on TV as a kid.

Looking back on it now, I can only surmise that Dr. Seuss caught a bit of the ol’ Stanley Kubrick Syndrome floating around some circles in the early-to-mid ’70s. Unfortunately, Seuss was best at clever turns of phrase, not at 2001: A Space Odyssey.

Still, it’s sorta interesting, and it has a bizarre appeal for a kids’ film, even if it has dated rather poorly.

Moulin Rouge

I mentioned this Baz Luhrmann film in my last post.

This film actually has spoken parts (as does Evita- a single line!), but they so serve the fantasy tale that there is no suspension of disbelief required, as in other musicals.

And yes, Nicole Kidman is nice to look at. I'm not sold on her as a dramatic actress (her best role was the minor role in Eyes Wide Shut- and that role is most notable for her displaying her lovely derriere; but she can actually sing quite well. And Ewan McGregor is very good, as well.

A clip:


I am not a Madonna fan, although I have always thought Antonio Banderas was an underrated actor. I am not high on musicals, yet the film version of Evita is probably the best musical ever filmed (or, at least tied with Moulin Rouge).


Simple. It totally throws itself into the artifice of a musical. There is not a single spoken word (I believe) in the whole film. The big problem with musicals is the faux idea that people in normal lives will all of a sudden break out into song.

No, does not work.

Evita does not even try, and that's a good thing. It's a non-stop roller coaster- more so than any action flick ever made.

Here's the trailer:


The Sound Of Music

My favorite all time musical, simply because it was likely the first film I ever saw on the big screen, at Radio City Music Hall, in a revival as the Twin Towers were being built.

Here is the signature moment in the film, and one in which Julie Andrews was burnished into my young retinas and mind:

Damn, she was a babe!

Here is the trailer:


This Rodgers and Hammerstein musical works better as a stage play, for the outdoorsiness of the film (clearly not Oklahoma, the state) dwarfs the supposed bigness of the music.

Shirley Jones is young and pretty but....well, that's about it. Some great tunes, but nothing else much going for it. A year or so ago I got a DVD package of the great old musicals for a great price, but have yet to watch them. This one will be interesting to see if it still ticks me off, or has it sunk even lower in my memory?

Anyway, the trailer:


West Side Story

Of all the street gang films out there, none has had more success than the film version of the Broadway musical West Side Story, that 20th Century updating of Shakespeare's Romeo And Juliet.

I first saw it years ago, in a revival in the mid-70s. I am not big on musicals, for they succeed or fail based solely on the quality of the music. The Rodgers and Hammerstein films of the 1940s and 1960s, while having good music, were boring as shit. This film, while overrated, is still pretty enjoyable, with music and lyrics by Leonard Bersnstein and Stephen Sondheim.

Here is a clip of America:

And here is the ballad Somewhere:

Natalie Wood was terribly miscast, and her voice had to be dubbed. Rita Moreno steals every scene she's in, and there's really no male actor that is memorable, but, the songs are very good. What more should one expect from a musical?


This so-so 1977 film stuck in my mind, if only for the ending, with the Kansas song, Carry On, Wayward Son.

In the DVD edition of this film, about a crazy Vietnam vet (Henry Winkler), the song is omitted. Sally Field and Harrison Ford are also in this film. It is mediocre, but, the use of the Kansas song at the film's end was what kept this film in my memory.

Alas, the film's studio, Universal, substituted a mediocre pop ballad for the Kansas song. Too often this is done in DVD releases. The tv show, The Odd Couple, is probably the most notorious example of this- with many of the classic Broadway tunes that Felix Unger sings removed from the DVDs due to the fees required to use the songs. One would have thought that such rights would have been bought up at the making of these shows and films.

Nonetheless, Henry Winkler, while never a great actor, gives a solid performance in this film. This was at the height of his superstardom as Fonzie, from the hit tv show Happy Days.

By contrast, the performances of Sally Field and Harrison Ford, are mediocre, at best. Granted, Ford has never been much of an actor, but Field is one of the best American actresses of the last 40 years.

Still, watch the film. Unfortunately, there are no clips from the film that are embeddable, so Google the film and watch the few that are available.

The Lords Of Flatbush

A former gangster turned artist. Hmm....familiar?

Stephen Verona was the man behind the making of The Lords Of Flatbush. He seems to be quite a Renaissance sort of guy. Whether there is anything of depth is another matter, but his evolution from street punk to artist is certainly one that resonates with me.

Here is a brief featurette with Verona speaking on the making of the film:

I recall sneaking into one of the local theaters to see this film. Having seen real gangsters- street level and low level mobster types, I was fascinated to see gow things were in the 'ancient' 50s. After all, this was the mid 70s! How things had changed.

Here's a clip from the film:

Stallone is actually very good in this film. I often wonder if Stallone had not gone mega with Rocky, and its sequels, and then the Rambo films, if he would have become a really great actor along the lines of Marlon Brando? There's no doubt, in some of his films, he's capable of the same raw dynamism that Brando had. It's just that he was never able to break out of the action star box. Perhaps, with age having taken over, he can now really become an actor.

Regardless, The Lords Of Flatbush was a film that impacted me as a young boy, and still holds a sway all these decades later. I'll have to get the DVD some time soon, and review it.

American Graffiti

I recall this film being big in the early 1970s. It was George Lucas's first hit, and while a severe comedown from THX 1138, it was not quite as mindnumbing as the Star Wars films.

Some good performances in a frothy, light film, it did not make one hate Lucas, but it was not as dark nor 'realistic' as, say, The Lords Of Flatbush, which came out a year later. That film starred Henry Winkler in a proto-Fonzie role, while his future Happy Days co-star, Ron Howard, starred in this film. Lords was also a better film than AG, if for no other reason than its low budget feel made it seem more realistic. Also, its thugs acted the way one stereotypically thought of gang kids from the 1950s.

Here's the trailer for AG:


Cinemension RSS Feeds On Cosmoetica

I finally figured out how to put an RSS feed of this blog onto Cosmoetica's front page. Now you can follow this blog from my main website.

Slowly but surely the websites are synching up. By the new year I'll have new logos.

THX 1138

It's amazing to look at this intelligent and provocative film, and then realize that what followed was American Graffiti, and three plus decades of juvenilia known as Star Wars (aka Film Franchise Ripping Off Isaac Asimov's Foundation Series Without Any Remuneration).

Here is a clip:

As I wrote in my review:
'In the commentary, Lucas vows that now that he has finally done with the Star Wars films, he is set to return to avant-garde filmmaking of this sort, and his heroes from the French New Wave. Let’s hope so, because after three decades of dumbing down the art of film with his simplistic and pallid Joseph Campbellian rot, the man owes literate filmgoers, and owes us big time for he became, wittingly or not, the very thing that his great first film excoriates, and, if the commentary is to be trusted, he still does not get it. Let’s toss him a softball and pray for the future.'

Still holds true, yessireebob!

Criterion And Other Foreign DVDs

Aside from the ridiculous coding of regions for DVDs, probably the most annoying thing about foreign DVDs is that they are usually so expensive to buy vis-a-vis the films released on DVD by Hollywood. Is it any wonder more people watch Michael Bay films in this nation than those by Theo Angelopoulos or Bela Tarr?

There seems to be almost a cult that has formed to keep high quality foreign films out of the hands of American DVD collectors.

Even worse, is that so few companies go the extra mile to dub the DVDs into English. First, as film is a visual medium, it is incredibly annoying to have to read subtitles. No dubbing job- even at 1960s Godzilla film levels, is anywhere near as distracting as having up to a third of your visual field blinkered by subtitles. Worse is when black and white films are subtitled in white fonts that lack borders. This is one of the great sins of The Criterion Collection. It simply does not cost any more to put subtitles into crisp gold lettering.

In fact, for only a few thousand dollars, qualified stage actors can be hired to read the lines of foreign actors, and avoid the whole mess of subtitles to begin with. Acting has very little to do with mouth synchronization, and the greatest actors act with small parts of their bodies, and the whole. That some actors can actually 'act' when reading dialogue for cartoons proves how silly the arguments against dubbing is-a-vis subtitles is.

Furthermore, if one watches classic foreign films from the 1950s and 1960s, which were routinely dubbed for American audiences (often retained in DVD releases), one can see how superior dubbing is. As example, Ingmar Bergman's Spider Trilogy is dubbed, and the fact that different actors and voices are used for the characters played by Max Von Sydow actually enhances all the characterizations, for we really get that it is not Max Von Sydow in all three films, but characters who merely look like Von Sydow, but sound different, even down to the peculiarities of their emotional vocal choices.

Another flaw that Criterion has, especially since it rebranded itself with the semi-circle C logo a few years back, is that they have really skimped on audio commentaries. Realistically, this is the single greatest advantage DVDs offer over old VHS tapes. That they have cut back on the bread and butter of the industry bodes not well for Criterion, nor for future foreign film novices with a will to want to learn. Simply put, commentaries are very cheaply made and produced, for next to nothing.

So, now that I've gotten that out of mys system, here's hoping that companies, like Criterion, that specialize in foreign films, actually start exploiting the market better, for there is big money to be made by NOT underestimating the viewing public; as strange as that sentiment might seem coming from me.

Dancer In The Dark

Earlier this decade, Jess and I saw our only Lars Von Trier film, Dancer In The Dark, with wacko singer Bjork as the lead character. Recall it was an ok film, until about 45 minutes into it, when Bjork breaks out into song, and the movie went from solid to laughably bad.

A perfect example of why most musicals fail. The rush to fill in narrative gaps with puffery usually results in a worse film. Granted, I don't recall much of the film except thinking that this is a perfect example of what middle class America calls Eurotrash films- pretentious nonsense masquerading as art.

Here is a scene:

In short, Bjork cannot act, and her singing is, well, let's just say Ella Fitzgerald isn'r turning over in her grave that there's a new queen on the block. Oddly, her character, especially after singing, becomes so annoying that you actually root against her, and feel happy when her character is executed. The only other film I can recall, where I so despised the lead character was Roberto Benigni's moronic character in Life Is Beautiful, where I cheered when the Nazis finally sent him off to sure death in a concentration camp.

However, as much as I wanted Bjork to die, the film accomplishes even this good task in a grating, drawn out fashion.

Here is the end:

Numbers of folks have told me this is Trier's worst film and I should give him a second chance, and some day I will. However, right now, he occupies a place next to Jean Cocteau, Jean-Luc Godard, Pier Paolo Pasolini, and Luis Bunuel as among the worst and most overrated film directors ever to come out of Europe.

Yes, Antonioni and Fellini, Bergman and Tarr, Tarkovsky and Lang did poor films, but they at least also created masterpieces. I'm not holding my breath that Trier belongs in the latter group, rather than the former.

But, time will tell. Until then, and until every last horror of Dancer In The Dark is expunged, I think I'll bide my time before giving him a second go at my neurons.



Francis Ford Coppola wrote the screenplay for this classic film, and Franklin Schaffner directed it, right after doing The Planet Of The Apes.

It's not really a great film, but I guess arguments can be made. It's not a visual feast, but the writing and acting by George C. Scott is superb.

Scott's role is, in many ways, a reprise of his role as the daffy general in Dr. Strangelove, except that Patton, being real, is a bit more restrained.

My fave moment is when Patton starts quoting lines from a poet, while in North Africa, then declaims himself as the poet, reincarnated from an ancient warrior. It's a great moment because Scott so forcefully presents it, but also because great warriors need to believe in themselves almost to the point of self-delusion, just to do the horrible things they must do to win a war.

As Patton says in the trailer, to paraphrase, wars are only one by making the other nation's dumb bastards die for their country. I'll be rewatching this film in the near future.

Here is the trailer:

The Conversation

The Conversation is a great film.

Gene Hackman is superb. The script is first rate, and obviously owes a debt to Michelangelo Antonioni's Blowup.

Here is a pre-DVD filmlet about the making of the film:


Dementia 13

Roger Corman is noted for having guided many filmmakers who later became successful. The two most famed are Martin Scorsese and Francis Ford Coppola.

But only Coppola's debut film, Dementia 13, is considered anything to write home about. It's a Gothic film surrounding a deranged family and mysterious deaths.

So, yet another freeby for Cinemension fans, courtesy of the public domain:


Patrick Swayze.

Patrick Swayze has died. I was never a huge fan or anything, but he died. I know him most from Dirty Dancing (nobody puts Baby in the corner) and Ghost.

2 preteen movies for me.

I particularly enjoy looking up old Dirty Dancing clips on You Tube, and I think anyone who does is really, really cool and intelligent. Just kidding. That movie is annoying as fuck. But it had a KICK ASS soundtrack that in the summer of 1987 my pal and I PLAYED TO DEATH. I should know, I had the tapes.

And did you know Patty sung too? "She's Like the Wind" is sung by him. My pal and I argued over the lines: "She's like the wind, through my trees..." Or is it "She's like the wind...through my dreams?"

WHAT IS IT? TELL ME ALREADY. Just kidding. I don't give a fuck. But I like the line in the song when he calls himself "a young old man." Here's the song:

Living without her, he goes insane, just so you know. I wish someone would say those words to me, but now the only one who would is dead.

But what I really want to know is the asshole who disabled all the embedding of all the KICK ASS final dances of Baby and Patty together.

Why won't anyone dirty dance with me? I want to dirty dance and not the kind in Salo, but the fun kind, where I can carry a watermelon. If you don't get the joke, then YOU'RE NOT FEELING IT.

Patty is proof that beautiful people get cancer too. R.I.P Patrick Swayze.

P.S. I "dated" (and by "dated" what I really mean is spend nights with when he'd call and invite me over after 11 PM) a guy who had a body just like Patty in DD. I'm serious. I might not have let him get away had he not been dumb as dogshit, but man, what a body he had. That made it all worthwhile. Yee Haw!

Patty has died, but Dirty Dancing lives 4 eva'!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Peace Out!

The Last Woman On Earth

One of my fave Roger Corman films is The Last Woman On Earth.

Many similar apocalyptic tales have existed, but this one has always stuck with me. Perhaps it's because I first saw it in a theater, a matinee at one of the local theaters growing u[p. I think the owner let me see it for free because I did some stuff for him. Those were the days!

And, while it's not a masterpiece, it is better than expected, partly because it has a decent screenplay, written by Robert Towne, who'd later pen Roman Polanski's Chinatown.

Note how the film opens at a cockfight in Puerto Rico. One of the things that often made cheapo films like this, shot in the 50s and 60s, so interesting is how there would be little moments like this that Hollywood would never show. Only in foreign films and B films would such non-clean realities exist. Think of a film like The Wages Of Fear, also.

This sort of realistic depiction of life, even if often hamfistedly handled, related to me, much in the same way a cartoon like Fat Albert did, since it was the only cartoon that showed poor and black people.

Anyway, before I veer into a sociological tract, enjoy the whole film, for free, courtesy of a lapsed copyright.



Jack in Little Shop

Here's Jack Nicholson in an early role as Wilbur Force, in Little Shop Of Horrors.

Not a good bad film, even, but notable because of its becoming a cult classic and Broadway hit musical:


Why don't some ever grow up?

Wassim made an interesting comment on the e-list about how his own film tastes have evolved and matured with age, yet the many that he knows still hold on to those childish "likes" when it comes to movies. I too have experienced that, where many pals of mine still have favorite movies like Wayne's World and The Three Amigos and Father of the Bride. While it's fine to "like" a movie, you would think that with age, you'd let go of some of these childish impulses.

For example, many of my favorite movies are not favorites now. You want to know what my favorite movie was when I was 7? Superman 2. My second favorite movie was Superman. I watched them 1000s of times. I also liked The Neverending Story (a fun little kid movie but the book is better, from what I recall), I liked all the Vacation movies, The Jerk, The Parent Trap (original--not the remake with ho bag Lohan), Pollyanna, there was a movie that involved a cat and a dog on a long journey but I don't remember the exact title, The Goonies, and all this sort of crap.

Now, some of these movies I still like, and still have their merits. I think The Jerk is a good bad movie, (as opposed to a bad bad movie, ala Crash and Saving Private Ryan). I still like The Parent Trap with Hayley Mills for sentimental reasons, and I like The Neverending Story, but none of these are anywhere in a league with being my favorite films now. Why would they be? I've grown and my tastes have grown. I don't get it. To not evolve is like saying my favorite band is New Kids on the Block because I liked them when I was 12.

But this does not just apply to movies, but to all art in general. I know writers who still think crappy writers they grew up with are good, simply because they "like" them, or this writer gave them some kind of "inspiration" as a kid. I liked a lot of those stiff poets from the late 1800s/early part of the 20th Century, like Oliver Wendell Holmes, Edwin Arlington Robinson, and John Greenleaf Whittier. But my tastes have since evolved. None of them come close to Jeffers, Rilke, Whitman, Shelley, Crane and Stevens--all poets I learned later on in life. So why would I still cling to them? Loyalty? What is it?

As example, one other movie I liked as a kid was Dead Poets Society. The guys are cute to look at (esp. the one that offs himself), the scenery is nice and Robin Williams is being his usual self. Not to mention the film quotes all the poets I knew at the time. But it's not a film that is high on intellect. For one thing, the message is very trite: "seize the day" YAWN. Also, the father (who later became the dad from That '70s Show) who forces the kid to become a doctor is so lame and there is no dimension to his character. Even the father/son relationship in Love Story was better than this.

I remember Roger Ebert gave this a bad review and I agree 100% with his review. Sometimes Ebert was spot on, and this is one of those times. Here's what he says:

"Dead Poets Society" is a collection of pious platitudes masquerading as a courageous stand in favor of something: doing your own thing, I think. It's about an inspirational, unconventional English teacher and his students at "the best prep school in America" and how he challenges them to question conventional views by such techniques as standing on their desks. It is, of course, inevitable that the brilliant teacher will eventually be fired from the school, and when his students stood on their desks to protest his dismissal, I was so moved, I wanted to throw up."

Another point he mentions is:

"The movie pays lip service to qualities and values that, on the evidence of the screenplay itself, it is cheerfully willing to abandon. If you are going to evoke Henry David Thoreau as the patron saint of your movie, then you had better make a movie he would have admired."

If you go on You Tube, all the idiots think the ending is a great scene, when it's so trite and over the top. The purpose: "ooh, see life in a new way and stand up for things," but that same theme can be explored in It's a Wonderful Life, albeit it is done much, much better.

Dead Poets Society is Hollywood's attempt at depth. It's not a terrible film, there is much worse out there, but it's not in any way a good one. The message is cliched and you know what's going to happen. Yet having said that, I do like the film, for the reasons I mentioned (cute guys, nice scenery, etc.) and if it's playing on a Saturday afternoon when I'm folding the laundry, I'll inevitably end up watching a little. But none of these are reasons to cling to any work of art, especially if that art is mediocre.

Here's the end scene, then it's best to leave it at that:

Bullshit I can't hear you. Sound off like you got a pair!

I watched Full Metal Jacket last week and it's such a kick ass film. I was moved to rewatch after having watched The Human Condition over the course of a week. I saw FMJ in the theaters when I was 11 and admittedly did not get all the humor and sexual references at the time.

Here are some quotes:

Gunnery Sergeant Hartman: How tall are you, private?
Private Cowboy: Sir, five-foot-nine, sir.
Gunnery Sergeant Hartman: Five-foot-nine, I didn't know they stacked shit that high.

Gunnery Sergeant Hartman: Tonight, you pukes will sleep with your rifles. You will give your rifle a girl's name because this is the only pussy you people are going to get. Your days of finger-banging ol' Mary J. Rottencrotch through her pertty pink panties are over! You're married to this piece. This weapon of iron and wood. And you will be faithful. Port, hut!

I also have to say what a great actor Vincent D'Onofrio is because he literally can morph into his roles and become them (as opposed to a bad actor like Tom Cruise who is always Tom Cruise). While watching it, you almost think he has Down's syndrome or something, he's just so believable. Thus his awesomeness is what earned him in the Manly Men Hall of Fame.

Likewise, Matthew Modine is also great in the role and he and D'Onofrio were both 28 at the time of this filming. Even though Modine isn't my "type" in terms of looks, I was attracted to his character because he's smart, a wise ass, and in control (and a writer to boot) and I told Dan the character reminded me of him. So Private Joker is a cutie.

Watch the opening scene I embedded above, the acting is so great by D'Onofrio, you can see why the character would be smiling the way he is, partly due to nerves, yes, when there is a drill instructor screaming in your face, but also if someone was saying things like, "I'm gonna gouge out your eyes and skull fuck you," and "Do you suck dicks?" I'd probably be laughing too.

And Vincent had to fatten up for that role: he's actually kind of sexy.

One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest

In the last post I mentioned this film by Milos Forman.

Here is the trailer:

Personally, it'a a very overrated film. Nicholson has moments, but it's really the first wacky Jack role Nicholson essayed, and he's ridden that persona through 35 years of roles. Sometimes he's phoned it in, and sometimes he's been brilliant.

But, this film still is mediocre, even if it's better, overall, than its female counterpart, Girl, Interrupted.


More Mel

Saw this film, High Anxiety, when I was 12. While not as good as some earlier films, the scene s with Cloris Leachman, parodying the psycho-nurse from One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest, are priceless. here is her introduction:


Farting Cowboys

A classic moment from Mel Brooks' Blazing Saddles.

Mel Brooks

It's hard to believe, after the last quarter century, but Mel Brooks, and his comedies in the 1970s and earlier (The Producers, Blazing Saddles, Young Frankenstein, High Anxiety), were once critically acclaimed, and- especially pre-Annie Hall- he was considered a better filmmaker than Woody Allen.

Then, things all went downhill. Political relevance faded to second rate slapstick, like this video, from 1983:

It's always an interesting question to ask- why does an artist 'lose it'? Did they ever really have it? Did dumb critics and dumber audiences merely think they had it? Or, like so many rock bands that nosedive after they hit 30 years of age- The Who, The Rolling Stones, Deep Purple, Metallica, etc.- is lesser art (not the higher arts) somehow prone to be a thing for the young? After all, Woody Allen's zaniest comedies were in his youth.

Maybe there's a combination of things?

So, why did Mel Brooks falter and Woody Allen grow into a film director on par with the best of the world? Where is Brooks' Crimes And Misdemeanors, Hannah And Her Sisters, or Stardust Memories?

My take is that Brooks, like many one hit wonder bands, was saving his best material, over many years, and blew his load early. Think of rock groups that have a great first album, filled with songs they spent years perfecting on the road, and then go into a studio for the followup and are dry.

But, whether right or wrong, it's still a bummer that there have been no Brooks films of value for almost three decades.


Fires On The Plain

Watch the opening of the film:

What a beginning. And, that Kon Ichikawa's film came out in the same year as the first part of Masaki Kobayashi's The Human Condition shows how filmmakers with similar material can diverge so greatly, even from the start.

Both films have alot going for them, but I lean toward Ichikawa's film- it is shorter, less preachy, and darkly comedic. It also is the sort of film not so consciously striving for 'greatness' and award ribbons at film festivals.

What say you?


New Review

My new review of Fires On The Plain is online.

Orson Welles As An Actor

He's known mostly as a film director, a stage director, a con man, and a magician, but Orson Welles also acted alot for other directors.

By the 1960s he was reduced to being nothing but a celebrity for hire, doing cameos to help fund his many film projects that never took off.

But, in films like The Stranger, where he plays an escaped Nazi ear criminal, Welles is really the only good thing in the film, and gives such a good performance that he makes the film succeed.

Compare that with any of his numerous guest appearances in all star 1960s films and one wonders why, despite the blacklist, other directors at least did not hire the man to act. He was reduced to scrounging for work for films made on a shoestring budget, or letting directors like Carol Reed beard for him on films like The Third Man.

Yet, even in interviews, Welles was always a consummate actor and showman:

Then, compare some of his work in his Shakespearean adaptations to that in Touch Of Evil or The Trial.

Rarely has one man acted so well in so many genres and gotten no respect. Yes, Welles has belatedly gotten his due as a director, especially for his later works. But, as an actor, while he may not have been an all time great, he was certainly a cut above what Hollywood proffers today.


More Men's Men.

Ok, so in light of my last post, I realized I left off some names. Some additional names include:

Jack London
Robinson Jeffers
Kenneth Rexroth
George Dickerson
Mark Rowlands
Charlie LeDuff
John Steinbeck
Joseph Conrad
Herman Melville
Stephen Crane
Ambrose Bierce
Sean Connery

Melville. Any man that spends months at sea and then writes the manliest book ever penned is a man to me.

And does anyone get anymore manly than Robinson Jeffers? Even if he didn't build a house out of rock, he's so badass that he could have lived in a cardboard box, it would not have mattered.

Jeffers: A man among men.

And then there's the man that is Steinbeck. "Bah, I'm a man," he says.

And Jack London: he traveled the world before getting fat. Still a man.


Just followed up with writer William Kennedy for a DSI, and seeing Jess's mention of him, below, as Man's Man, made me think of the film version of his great novel, Ironweed.

Frankly, the film falls far short of the novel. Jack Nicholson is just poorly cast, as is Meryl Streep. Francis Phelan could have been Gene Hackman or some smaller 'name'.

Still, a solid film. Here is the trailer:

Are You A Man's Man?

Johnny Cash says "fuck you," I'm a man.

I've been reading Pete Hamill's memoir A Drinking Life, and it is very clear that Hamill is a man's man. So I got to thinking, what is a man's man? A term hard to define, (or is it?) but you know it when you see it. There are some prerequisites however, involving both looks and temperament, in order to qualify.

The first is that you absolutely cannot be British. Their whole way of speaking is too fey and finger up the ass, so they cannot qualify, unless we're talking about Patrick McGoohan from The Prisoner who has the British accent but was an American and manly to the core. Though Irish men absolutely qualify, and Canadian Bruce Greenwood makes it in.

Part of it is you can't be one of these pussies who obsess over petty things, you don't get depressed or sad because you're too goddamn fucking manly to do so, and you're able to kick the ass of anyone in front of you, yet men still like you. You also can't be too yuppish or too short, because such qualities are just asking for an ass beating. You also can't drink white wine but you can make your own salad dressing.

So here are some men's men who just reek of manhood everywhere they go:

Dan Schneider (poet and critic)
Marlon Brando (actor)
Robert DeNiro (actor)
Charlton Heston (actor)
Paul Newman (actor)
Russel Crowe (actor)
Vincent D'Onofrio (actor)
George Clooney (actor)
Gary Cooper (actor)
Werner Herzog (director)
Johnny Cash (singer)
Dick Proenneke (Alaskan Badass)
George Washington (1st President of the U.S.)
Teddy Roosevelt (26th President of the U.S.)***
Lyndon Baines Johnson (36th President of the U.S.)
Pete Hamill (Novelist)
William Kennedy (Novelist)
Ernest Hemingway (Novelist)
Gene Hackman (actor)
John Wayne (actor)
Orson Welles (director)
Kirk Douglas (actor)
Samuel L. Jackson (actor)
Max Von Sydow (actor)
Patrick McGoohan (actor)
Bruce Greenwood (actor)

Just the sight of him says "fuck you."

Examples of anti-men's men:

Leonardo DiCaprio (actor)
Hugh Grant (actor)
James Frey (crappy writer)
Anyone trying to pass themselves off as a published poet or who has an MFA
Richard Russo (crappy writer)

Oh yeah, I forgot to mention, being a man's man also means you kick ass in multiple ways, in that you're layered in confidence and you're good at what you do. So this leaves out pretty much any male published writer today with exception for Hamill and Kennedy.

Al Pacino, though as manly as he is, doesn't make the cut because he's only like 5'6". Though I'm sure if we were allowed to get close enough, or rather, if I could get close enough, I'd see he is in fact manly to the bone. *hee hee*

Also, Mark Wahlberg would have made it in had it not been for his career as Marky-Mark, and rumors that he's going to be starring in the anal-hemorrhage, estrogen-soaked schlockfest The Lovely Bones certainly doesn't help.

And George here, he's so goddamned manly that he led his troops overnight, crossing the Delaware, without any sleep, then kicked some British ass, (as he should) and didn't bitch once. Then, because he's so awesome, he gives up his privilege of ruling the U.S.A. because he doesn't need it. With that kind of fucking manliness, who would?

Hell, after writing all this, I feel as though I've just grown a pair.

Addendum*** Geoff suggested Teddy Roosevelt. How could I have forgotten ol' Teddy! Also, read more men's men.


Duck Tits

Here’s a revamped theme from a show my kid sister watched when i was about 7 or 8. I didn’t watch it, though, cuz even then I already watched ultra-violent Arnie and Sly Stallone films. Anyway, I thought this was amusing.

Cocteau's Shit

A clip from The Blood Of A Poet. If you watch enough Buster Keaton silent shorts, you see just how derivative the Frenchman was of Keaton- from Sherlock Jr. to The Electric House to Steamboat Bill.

Not only was Cocteau derivative, but he was inferior in terms of the special effects, even though his film came a decade after Keaton made it big.

Y Tu Mama Tambien

I pretty much hit the proverbial nail on the head when I reviewed this film five years ago.

I wrote:
The acting, by and large, is passable at best. Neither male lead shows any depth, but Verdú could be a star in Hollywood if she learns English. The problem is that despite its claims of ‘frankness’ the tale is just dull and hackneyed. The boys are off the rack horny male teenagers, then without any real reason, supposedly reveal a homosexual attraction for each other. The problem is that neither lad gives any prior indication that they are gay. Sure, they shower at clubs together, snap towels, jerk off at poolside, and share sexual boasts- but that’s standard heterosexual behavior. Prior to their night together both boys show their utter helplessness to Luisa’s wiles, so the night they share comes off as nothing but a plot contrivance to play to male homosexual fantasies- that all men who are friends are really latent, everyone’s sexuality is on a ‘sliding scale’, etc. Pish-posh, I say. I know lesbians, too, like to say ‘Once a woman’s tasted snizz she’ll never go back to plain old gizz’ but, c’mon- this is an example of plain old bad screenwriting by Alfonso and Carlos Cuarón.

Here is the trailer:

I only mention it again because I did so in my recent interview.


Zvyagintsev's BANISHMENT

I wasn't that thrilled about "The Return", Zvyagintsev's first feature for a specific reason: people hailing him as "the new Tarkovsky", "Tarkovsky successor"....etc, but The Return wasn't a bad movie,

in fact it was a decent work, especially as a first work of his. Overall form over substance, but Zvyagintsev's problem is claiming more substance, trying too hard, polishing his narrative (though interesting: a father returns after a decade of unexplained to his young teens that don't remember him, and his wife) with heavy soundtracks and stunning imagery.
this is the first 10 mins (u can watch the whole thing in 10 parts on youtube)

Now unlike the Return, Banishment isn't even a good movie. After a promising start, the movie succumbs into such mediocrity that even for everybody who hailed Zvyagintsev, they have to face the fact he had a major problem here.

There's a big responsibility in comparisons (though people tend to give it out of pure excitement sometimes), before Zvyagintsev Sokurov was regarded as the new Tarkovsky; but after watching some of his works, it's obvious that -though he has something to say- he's far from Tarkovsky's philosophical depth. Tarkovsky isn't only about landscapes, slow-panning cameras, smoke, and water....
Zvyagintsev's Banishment doesn't really go beyond appearances. And having said that I wanted to use another word but I can't: PRETENTIOUS!!
It's not bad to be influenced by such master at all, but empty reproduction ends up harming more than helping. His camera ends up panning aimlessly and missing -clearly- the depth and grandeur of masters that used this technique before.
Another clear feature was his use of christian metaphors (blood washing, Churches, Leonardo's painting....), but again it wasn't convincing at all. It seemed that Zvyagintsev has all this in his baggage and just wanted to throw here and there.
Plot wise, a man (Alex) gets involved with gangsters and is obliged to take his wife and small kids to an isolated place, leaving their urban life behind will destabilize his relation with his wife. Zvyagintsev tries to go under the surface, to squeeze emotions, to build characters...and if he doesn't really fail, he doesn't do great also, and the already very artificial and distant drama features major flaws and unjustified missing elements from the narrative.
The sound track is also inspired from orthodox Christian chants, but naively gives away a lot of the drama since it only culminates in a cresendo mode right before a twist or an incident. For me this isn't the role of a soundtrack, it (if present) should add a different layer to the work instead of forcing attention.
As a summary, despite of some VERY RARE fine moments and one or two clever camera tricks (especially by the end of the movie) it's just an overtly polished movie.

I'm always very open minded towards new emerging directors, new hopes in the current cinema. Zvyagintsev's the Return was a good work, but the Banishment fails on many levels.
It would be wise for everybody to stop throwing comparisons and titles, and keep Tarkovsky where he belongs (with masters like Bergman, Antonioni, Dreyer..) thus leaving these new directors free from such frames hoping for them to achieve their own identity.

And regarding Zvyagintsev, only time and more works will tell us if Banishment was a misfire, or The Return was a beginner's luck (most likely the latter)

New Interview Up

And this time it's me being asked questions for a change.

It's the Critical Mass interviews at Only Good Movies blog.

Crown of the Continent.

Read my review here. Great stuff!

Popeye The Sailor Meets Ali Baba's Forty Thieves

This is another cartoon classic. Not up to Daffy Duck's Duck Dodgers In The 24 1/2 Century, but still classic.

I'm Not There

In being a great devourer of Bob Dylan, I have had more often the pleasure than not, to englut and subject this self to nigh everything the man has produced and grazed: his feeble forays into prose and cinema - Tarantula and Renaldo and Clara, respectively, his cameos in others' works: Sam Peckinpah's 1973 Pat Garrett and Billy the Kid and Larry Charles' 2003 Masked and Anonymous, along with every bootleg and interview I could seize my hands and ears upon; this is the unforgivable ignorance of worship within youth, in particular when you decree everything a masterwork predicated solely on past glories. I've since cooled to Dylan, remembering his past presence though unmoved to fall any true thought atop him.

Having known of Todd Haynes' 2007 I'm Not There and its crux - six different actors playing each a character based on but not quite Bob Dylan - well before its release, I was all no and neuroses, believing, fearing that this was a mistake and an impossibility to pull off. Thus was the reason for my abstaining from it until this past week. This known and said, having my frights fleshed albeit on a television screen, I was merely minorly disappointed for my expectations had dwindled to crumbs at this point.

I suppose I shall commence by giving a precis of each Dylan in order of their emerging. The first incarnation we fully encounter is a young black boy (Marcus Carl Franklin) who calls himself Woody Guthrie with "This Machine Kills Fascists" scrawled about his guitar case and all, this owed to the real Dylan's obsession with the real Guthrie when he first began his career. The child recounts stories he's doubtless created and rehearsed in a mirror in assembling his legend. He takes up then with a family where he sings and they feed him. He soon leaves after a descent into reality via the matriarch who sees through him and the talk of boxcars, by telling him to sing of his own time, after his fraud being found out he hops another train where he is accosted by hobos who attempt to rob him. To escape, he jumps from the moving train to be met by a river. He awakens in a hospital finding that a couple has salvaged him and is subsequently taken in by them. He is soon found out anew this time when a phone call by a youth correctional center is received by the family which leads to his leaving to seek out the true Woody Guthrie who lay now decaying in a hospital room in New Jersey. The young Woody delivers flowers and songs to his namesake.

The theme of being "made" and seen through and the subsequent fleeing is a recurring one that wields not as much power as one would expect. This will be further illumed in the imminent descriptions of each remaining Dylan.

Our second surrogate is Arthur Rimbaud (yes, christened after that Arthur Rimbaud), he portrays Dylan as the poet he'd always been weakly described as by critics. I see no point in these moments in the film, they are worthless truly. We have the cardboard Ben Winshaw as Rimbaud spilling ceaseless quips and quotes of life and art intermittently besprinkled within the film that become boring, repetitious, and ultimately unnecessary.

Third up is Christian Bale as Jack Rollins, Dylan as "the folk singing prophet and voice of a generation", creator of the "finger pointing songs" of the early 1960's. His story and housed and heard in the form of a documentary where we are assaulted by various fictional talking heads, namely Alice Fabian (Julianne Moore as Joan Baez?) telling how he touched them, how great he was, essentially blowing him. The recreation of settings is superb; the early performances; "The Times They Are A-Changing" on black and white television and Rollins gently relaying "The Lonesome Death of Hattie Carroll" to a small a crowd on a farm. The echoing of actions and interviews are something of a different strain entirely. When Rollins shakes in anxiety while being interviewed you don't believe it, just as much as when he claims to have seen "something that Lee Harvey Oswald felt in him." Only the real Dylan could behave and feel such a way and make them feel authentic for this was the character he'd spent his existence up to that point cultivating. Certainly not any one or six actors could have shifted my perception on this, regardless of how much they look or sound like him. Rollins occurs again, as a preacher reformed from his past lives, seized by Christianity. What troubles me is that we are never given full reason for this need and conversion, only a new talking head who told him to pray one day. Dylan die-hards know why and Haynes' commentary expounds, but the casual viewer is left with only a thin answer.

Next we get Heath Ledger as Robbie Clark, an actor who portrays Jack Rollins in a biopic. This tale tells of how Robbie and his wife Claire (Charlotte Gainsbourg) met became rapt within each other and ultimately unraveled. Their relationship seems to sustain for as long as the Vietnam War does. This section just as the others never plunges beyond the surface which is a shame because this is primed material properly ripened. Gainsbourg carves what she can given the material, but we are only allowed the same uniformity that films' depictions of marriage these days seem to be about; the husband ignores the wife, fucks other women, and regrets it only when its too late.

Since I've known Cate Blanchett was to recreate Bob Dylan, I was afraid, in especial since she won an Oscar for her impression of Katherine Hepburn in The Aviator , and was nominated for her attempt at Jude Quinn, Dylan's electric period mirroring, in this film. This was expected; the mimicry and mere skimming of flesh, but never to this extent. Of Dylan's creative peak, the one that sired the triad of Bringing It All Back Home, Highway 61 Revisited, and Blonde on Blonde, we are met with the flower and never the root, which is not the folk facet of out hero, but the true person, before everything. The film gives itself opportunity when reporter Keenan Jones (the ever good Bruce Greenwood) exposes Quinn on television as being from a suburban, middle class Massachusetts family. Instead of choosing to plumb Quinn's emotions and motives, we get him moiling about a typewriter avenging himself creatively, scored by David Cross as Allen Ginsberg reading a passage about revenge from Thus Spoke Zarathustra. Yeah, Allen Ginsberg shows up at some point of this story on a golf cart as Quinn is being interviewed by Jones. His presence is as superfluous as Michelle Williams' as Coco Rivington, an ersatz Edie Sedgwick, in a dream sequence that echoes 8 1/2 , whom Quinn wants after an earlier unseen incident. They exchange odd barbs and Quinn resigns. Decadence seizes this passage of the film, where we glimpse the rock star life: drugs, parties, more drugs, etc. and never an eye into the creative process. There's nothing here to grab hold of aside from the musical interludes which are weakened by forcing Jones the reporter into the role of Mr. Jones from "Ballad of a Thin Man". Such could probably box the entire of my thoughts on the film, but there is more.

Richard Gere embodies Dylan as the recluse, Billy the Kid, who retreats from the world after, the viewer is never sure of, but fans of Dylan will see it as the mirroring of Dylan's burrowing into obscurity into Woodstock, New York after a 1967 motorcycle accident. The town, Riddle, is flooded of death - murder and suicide and the ruin rained by Pat Garrett (Bruce Greenwood again) with Greenwood portraying what threatens to slay the artist anew. Billy confronts Garrett on Halloween at the funeral of a young girl, asking Garrett to leave town. Billy is immediately arrested. He soon escapes, hops a train sees his dog who'd run away earlier and departs. Finding the guitar case that reads "This Machine Kills Fascists", we gather this is the concluding bookend to Woody's story and thus Dylan's life hitherto. And all ends with footage of the real Dylan atop stage from 1966.

I agnize the urge to limn Dylan so freely and unconventionally, but when the attempts sing futile and feeble with each actor, aside from Richard Gere, embodying ever impersonation and never immersion, all fails. The vertiginous effect of never settling screams of Haynes not believing in his material for had he, he would've had one actor inhabit this panoply of personae or focus on one event in each of his character's lives. For he doesn't, his attempts transcend never gimmick nor hipster preening. Perchance the mimetic was Haynes' intent; a Post Modern punching and poking at the biopic. Though I doubt it, if it was, he has succeeded. But Dylan is of himself, a self-supplying cannibal, the Ouroboros and only he could make such feelings, every tremble and every bon mot real. All these avatars did was show and denude how much of an act Mr. Zimmerman truly was, is

The film's second most salient failing is the wishing to spread itself over every corner and crevice of existence, a common reason most biopics fail. This cubist circus could have gotten away with its most prevalent theme of rebirth were it not so blatant and unballasted by the past. Each time his mask/armor is obliterated either by himself (Jack Rollins) or someone else (Jones' undoing of Quinn), he retreats within himself and emerges someone new, a flesh assembled tabula rasa, acknowledging rarely if ever the catalyst and/or the past.

Haynes' aping of Godard and Fellini are without neither pretense nor piling of the director's own ideas. They play as homely homage, simply stagnating. This is thin compared to the act of echo and recreation as in Woody Allen's masterful Another Woman, where the main character, a woman of fifty encounters in a daydream her brother as a teenager and he unbosoms he feelings, his wishes and fears. Taking its cue from Ingmar Bergman's Wild Strawberries, Allen cores into emotion in a frightening way, building off his Swedish antecedent, not merely tracing it.

The film is nude of revelation, which is something I believe needed in the biopic. What has rendered this man this way; what is he eluding? Why? Not that we need answers, but hell, an acknowledgment or two toward his pathology, his impulses and his emotions would have sung sufficience. All we are presented are grazings of the surface, beauteous visuals, and hollow mimicry.

This may have been too mountainous an assaying for Haynes and all involved. His smaller films: Safe and Far From Heaven play more coherent in all spheres than this and even his simple, diluted Velvet Goldmine. I seek not narrative as most detractors of this film do, simply truth and revelation.

The soundtrack to the film is a more revelatory experience playing as variorum, from first to finish with contributions from pillars as sundry as Stephen Malkmus and Roger McGuinn, which renders as a whole more the gradual unfurling of a career and life than the film's hurried unraveling.

In finishing, with all I've written said, I cannot wholly not recommend this film, for it is hypnotic and enthralling within even its failings. Perhaps I am biased for I am a Dylan fan, perhaps a film about a man so infinitely interesting as Dylan cannot and should not be shunned.


Daffy Duck

Resolved: Daffy Duck is a greater cartoon character than either his more lauded Warner Bros. co-star, Bugs Bunny, or his avian rival from Disney, Donald Duck.

Why he is greater than Bugs Bunny:
1) he is funnier.
2) he is more self-deprecating.
3) he almost always loses but perseveres.
4) Bugs almost always wins and never suffers consequences.
5) that uncanny ability to survive explosions and disasters, which is rivaled only by Wile E. Coyote.
6) Daffy's penchant for disaster survival is incurred by a far more devious rival- Bugs. Wile only has the goddamned Roadrunner to contend with.
7) Unlike Wile, Daffy often invents his contraptions; he need not order them from the Acme Co. Bugs has this ability, too, but does not have himself as an adversary.
8) Duck Dodgers In The 24 1/2 Century is possibly the greatest cartoon short ever made. Its star? Daffy Duck.
9) No Bugs Bunny short compares to the aforementioned classic.
10) Lisping is cooler than a Brooklyn accent.

Why he is greater than Donald Duck:
1) Warner Bros. kicks Disney's ass.
2) Black feathers are cooler than white feathers.
3) While lisping is cooler than a Brooklyn accent, it is more discernible than Donald's cackle.
4) Donald has Huey, Dewy, and Louie as nephews. Daffy is a duck alone against the cosmos.
5) Scrooge McDuck paid for Donald's success. Daffy is a self-made waterfowl. Nepotism is bad.
6) Donald wears that infantile sailor suit.
7) Daffy is a nudist, with a great physique.
8) The best Donald Duck cartoon is not as good as the worst Daffy Duck cartoon.
9) Donald has the insipid Daisy Duck as a girlfriend.
10) Daffy is a rogue bachelor.

There is no need to even argue my points, as they are brilliant.

The only real question is: Is there ANY cartoon character greater than Daffy Duck? And characters that started out in comic books do not count- they are comic book characters.