Aside from being an avid reader, self is also an avid movie-goer. She inherited this behavior from Dear Departed Dad! He loved watching movies. He took her to see “The Deer Hunter” and “The Godfather” and George Lucas’ “American Graffiti.” Also: “Saturday Night Fever” and “The French Connection.” He really liked Oliver Stone: he clapped at the end of “Platoon,” and rented “JFK” even though he’d seen it already, on one of his visits to self at Stanford.
Below are some of self’s favorite movie scenes of 2011:
- The full body-shots of Owen Wilson strolling around outdoor markets in “Midnight in Paris.” Also, full-body shot of the four unlikely travelers (Owen Wilson, Rachel McAdams, Michael Sheen and his hilarious wife/girlfriend, played by Nina Arianda), strolling in Versailles. Also, touchingly nervous Nina Arianda, self-correcting her French pronunciation.
- Anytime Shailene Woodley, the 20-year-old actress who plays George Clooney’s daughter in “The Descendants,” strolled on-scene in her raggedy cut-offs or her teensy Hawaiian bikinis, showing off not only a fabulous Hawaiian tan, but also very long and lean American legs.
- Paula Patton in “Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol,” performing kick-ass fight scene in a light blue shift dress. Jeremy Renner flexing with the Tai-Chi moves before flinging himself into a wind tunnel.
- Matthew McConaughey in “The Lincoln Lawyer,” sitting in the back of a limo and letting his Texan twang (and his mane) unfurl in all its glory.
- Oldman as Smiley, the very last shot of him in “Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy.” Tom Hardy as Ricky Tarr, any scene in “Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy,” except where he has his back turned to the camera.
- The apes in “Rise of Planet of the Apes,” swarming all over the Golden Gate Bridge in — of course — a deliciously thick, pea-soup fog.
- Zeus in “The Immortals,” lashing a golden whip at Poseidon (This movie had the Olympian gods don the craziest headgear self has ever seen: crazier even than the Fascinator Princess Beatrice sported during the Royal Wedding). Also, the opening scene of “The Immortals” — for drama, it cannot be beat.
- In “The Debt,” Jessica Chastain fighting with evil Nazi doctor in a depressing apartment adorned with cockroaches
Now, the worst, the absolute worst movie scenes of 2011 are to be found in the Jonah Hill vehicle, “The Sitter.” Self doesn’t even know how she endured watching the movie from beginning to end. Such must be her stomach for unappetizing fare.
Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.