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*All 31 "Prompts" might not be featured on this blog; I have my own schedule and topics to adhere to.

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Sunday
Apr102016

Zoe’s Gangster Movie Trivia: The Godfather Trilogy

Several vinyl hijackers known as the Popcorn Snobs are running this blog for the next 20 days with ‘The Taking of April A-Z’ as their theme. *For those who have yet to watch The Godfather films but plan to do so, please bear in mind that today’s post may contain spoilers*

Ladies and gentleman, It’s Zoe…your social cinema ally and the time has come to highlight some of America’s most iconic gangster movies! If you’ve visited before, then you probably know Nicole is a member of The Large Association of Movie Blogs (The Lamb).

This month, the LAMB community will be discussing The Godfather film series, which was crowned their “Movie of the Month: Franchise Special” for April 2016. Championed by Nick Rehak of French Toast Sunday, The Godfather, The Godfather Part II and The Godfather Part III beat out 10 other franchises including The Dark Knight trilogy, Star Trek: (The Original Series), the Toy Story trilogy, Harry Potter and the Bourne series.

While reports of screen legend Marlon Brando stuffing his cheeks with cotton when he auditioned for the role of Don Corleone -- to give him the “face of a bulldog: mean looking, but warm underneath” – are likely familiar to true film fanatics, I’d like to share some movie trivia I bet you didn’t know about The Godfather trilogy.

  • Actor Alex Rocco, who plays casino mobster Moe Greene in The Godfather, is noted saying that if you look closely, you can see his right eye twitch a little before he is shot.* Rocco was nervous while filming that scene, as special effects crew rigged his glasses with two tubes hidden in the frames and taped them to his body under the table. One tube had fake blood while the other contained a BB pellet connected to an air pump. The BB was fired away from the eye, using compressed air, shattering his glasses from the inside and causing the fake blood to flow. 

The British Film Institute published rare production photos from The Godfather Trilogy, including this one where crew members film a street assassination stunt, with actor John Cazale as Fredo Corleone.

  • In 1975, The Godfather: Part II became the first sequel ever in the history of film to win an Oscar for Best Picture. It remained the only sequel to ever do so until The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King won an Oscar for Best Picture in 2004. 
  • The scene in The Godfather: Part III where Calo, one of Michaels bodyguards, kills Don Lucchesi was originally filmed to show Calo snapping Lucchesi’s neck. Director Francis Ford Coppola wanted the murder to be bloodier, so he changed it to the shocking and violent death scene that exists in the film now – Calo stabbing Lucchesi in the neck with his own glasses. The gory nature of this movie prompted the MPAA to give The Godfather: Part III an NC-17 rating, so Coppola ended up re-editing this scene to give the film a better chance at scoring an R-rating for its theatrical release.

There you have it! Three bits of trivia from The Godfather trilogy. Make sure to check out the next blog post where Kesha teaches you how to survive a horror movie.

Which film in The Godfather trilogy do YOU like best?

*Further reading: The Annotated Godfather: The Complete Screenplay by Jenny M. Jones 

Friday
Apr082016

Brandon Reacts to Frivolous Arrest of North Carolina Father for Overdue ‘Freddy Got Fingered’ Rental

‘The Taking of A-Z’ continues as vinyl popcorn snobs take over this blog for the next 21 days.

Hi folks, my name is Brandon and I’m here today with an example of how insanely fucked up our nation’s legal system tends to be – especially when handling minor offenses. Last month, a police officer in North Carolina pulled over James Meyers for a broken taillight, while he was taking his daughter to school.

During this traffic stop, Meyers was also informed of an outstanding warrant out for his arrest. Want to know what was his crime? He failed to return a VHS of the cult comedy Freddy Got Fingered that he rented in 2002!

Meyers thought the officer was joking but the warrant was indeed real and he ended up turning himself in to face misdemeanor charges and a $200 fine for an overdue video rental. Freddy Got Fingered is a comedy film about an unemployed cartoonist who moves into his parents’ basement and starts spreading sexual abuse rumors about his father.

When I found out about James Meyers the arrest warrant for such a frivolous “crime,” my faith in the justice system has decreased significantly. Firstly, I do believe that there should be consequences for theft. I also agree with pursuing the collection of fines when customers renege on a deal or contract such as in this case where Meyers did not return a piece of property that he had on loan from a video rental store. To go so far as to issue an arrest warrant for a 2002 transaction involving one VHS tape? That’s a bit over the top!

The whole process of dealing with this man’s arrest including filing the paperwork, placing him in handcuffs, proceedings, etc. is such a frivolous use of law enforcement and resources that could have been better utilized in going after those who are deliberately committing other crimes such as robbery. There is a happy ending to this story. Tom Green, the director and star of Freddy Got Fingered, offered to help pay the fines for Meyers. Apparently, Green is another person who considers this whole ordeal -- of arresting a man because he did not return a movie -- to be just as ridiculous as it sounds.

How would YOU have reacted to this frivolous arrest over a video rental?

What was the last movie YOU rented?

 

Brandon is a popcorn snob that enjoys learning about weird film trivia. He likes technology and impersonating famous actors.

Thursday
Apr072016

Reese’s Enquiry – What makes a film EPIC?

A group of vinyl figures known as the popcorn snobs are running this blog for the next 22 days, in what they’re calling ‘The Taking of A-Z.’ Enjoy!

Hello to everyone, I am Reese and I’m requesting your help in settling an ongoing disagreement that Kesha and I usually have when we go to the cineplex. She claims there is only one key element that determines whether a film will turn out to be truly epic or not – acting. However, I don’t see things that way because it all depends on the type of movie you’re watching.

To me, epic films are the kinds that play well in a theater setting because different elements are working together so well that you have to see it on the big screen to get (and appreciate) the “full effect” of a movie in all its glory. The sound is so riveting that you don’t even realize how it’s playing with your emotions. The cinematography is breathtaking that you might think you’re actually there. The acting performances are so captivating that you feel like what you’re watching is real. The directing is so smooth that everything you’re watching looks like it belongs.

There’s nothing out of place that is making you question some aspect of the film. The script flows with characters that are so bold and unforgettable, you learn a lot about yourself from watching them. The editing is so smooth and extraordinary that you feel like you’re being taken on an exhilarating journey – one that will eventually come to an end but you’re fine when that happens because you got what you needed.

Extraordinary editing delivers nothing more and nothing less that you need to see or experience. In fact, if there was one element that is crucial to the recipe for making an epic film, I would say editing is it!

Extraordinary editing can make you forget you’re sitting in a theater amongst hundreds of strangers, watching a piece of fiction play out before your very eyes. It can take you into the future, make you relive the past and bring you back to the present, all without missing a beat. It can keep you on the edge of your seat, so wrapped up in a scene that you’re anxiously waiting to find out what happens next.

What element(s) do YOU think a film needs to be truly EPIC?

Reese is a popcorn snob who enjoys the art of making movies and believes they were meant to be seen at the theater, not on computers or mobile devices. She likes socializing about all things related to cinema, dancing, music and cute hairstyles. 

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