The Castastrophies 2010

December 25, 2010

…on the 12th day of Castmas the Chrazzas gave to me…

The Castastrophies 2010 (right click and “save as” for download)

We made it folks! We don’t know what to celebrate first; the end of another year of cinema, or the end of the 12 Days of Castmas…

…Merry Christmas by the way…

We hope you’re having an excellent day with family/friends/loved-ones/pets-as-replacements-for-human-interaction on this wonderful day-of-days.

If you are with company, why not sit everyone down and load up this latest offering from Casta La Vista as we present to you our very own awards episode…The Castastrophies! Yes its that time of year again when we have cause to reflect on all the movies that have been and gone this year and hand out our own accolades for those that we feel are most worth a mention.

All the same categories from last year are present and correct, plus a few new ones for good measure.

If you agree or disagree with any of our recipients, or you have any awards of your own that you’d like to dish out then tell us about them in the comments section below OR email them to us at mail@castalavista.com. You could post thoughts on our Facebook page too or tweet them to us, or even send us a both a postcard… its entirely up to you.

We’re going to take a little break now until the New Year but thanks for listening and checking out the site as always, we hope you enjoy the content and have enjoyed our 12 Days of Castmas (we certainly have); we’ll speak to you all again very soon.

Peace!

P.S. Happy New Year

P.P.S The first movie poster Chris M talks about is this one and the second is this one. Chris W’s poster business can be found here. The trailer Chris M references for this year is this one and for the movie released next year it’s this one – the trailer Chris W gives his award for is here.

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Project 365 – VICTORY!

December 24, 2010

…on the 11th day of Castmas the Chrazzas gave to me…

So here we are Casta fans – I’m sure you can no doubt tell from the oh so subtle title and my prolific singing in the soundclip above that I DID IT!  I finally stuck to a New Year’s resolution and completed one of the stupidest and most arduous tasks I’ve ever undertaken!

But here I am at the other side and you know what? I feel great. Not only have I finally managed to verse myself on a great deal of “classic” cinema, I’ve also managed to keep very abreast of the newest cinema releases throughout the year, as well as finding a few hidden gems I might have otherwise missed were I not scouring the world for movies every waking second of my life. Add in the fact that I have a full time job, have been on a couple of extended holidays, watched a ridiculous amount of TV and have a very time hungry passion outside of work and watching 365 films has been no mean feat.

People have asked me whether I think watching all these movies has been a waste of time, and I can quite honestly say that no, it hasn’t. Except maybe for Knowing… For the most part, watching movies has been a way of killing dead time either on the way to work, at the gym, on longer journeys, or just when I’m sat at home completely broke. Fair to say I could have used the time more constructively but that just wouldn’t have been me :p

I am a little shocked however that I managed to watch over fifty in the first three weeks; in comparison the last fifty took me over twice as long at nearly eight weeks. God I was a loser at the beginning of 2010. Look how much has changed.

Another thing people have asked me is what I’m going to do with all my free time next year. Well I’m thinking of splitting the time I spent watching movies (ave. 12.8 hours a week) into thirds and still spending a portion of that watching movies (for Casta’s sake!), the second third maybe doing something useful like the gym or something (where conveniently I can watch movies whilst on the exercise bike…) and the least third I want to spend concentrating on my own creative writing. Thinking on it, I might just use the second third on Casta instead.

The rest of this post is largely going to be further info for the datahounds and statcats like me out there, so if you’re not interested in that kind of thing then you’re probably just as well stopping here.

Before you go though I’d urge you to check out the picture just below (it’s the poster for every movie I watched this year in order and took me HOURS to make!)  and also to click on both the picture above and  the thumbnail of Marty Me at the bottom of this post – they’re very special for a reason that should become clear as soon as you click on them!

Thanks then to everyone who has supported me on my stupid venture throughout the year and lent me DVDs, come to the cinema with me (usually against their will), given me Orange Wednesday codes, let me change the channel or simply suggested movies I should watch.
You guys were great.

But I was better.

__________________

If you’re still with me, here’s some stats for you!

This year I watched;

  • 365 new movies (plus Toy Story 2 3D and the Back to the Future rerelease)
  • 115 of these were in the cinema (31.33%)
  • 135 were cinematic releases this year (36.78%)
  • The average length of those movies was one hundred and eight minutes (and forty nine seconds)

I spent;

  • 39,929 minutes watching new movies. Or twenty seven days, seventeen hours and twenty nine minutes if you prefer.
  • 12,148 (30.4%) of these minutes were spent in the cinema. That’s eight days, ten hours and twenty eight minutes.
  • The most films watched in any one day was five (twice, once in week three and once, unsurprisingly on the last day of the EIFF)
  • The most films watched in a week was nineteen (week two)
  • The most consecutive days without watching any movies was fifteen (whilst in Canada – although I did try and watch both Yojimbo and Weird Science but fell asleep in both and as such they don’t make the 365)

The best of these movies will be announced in the Castatrophies tomorrow.

For those who think this amount of film watching has been excessive, I’ll happily point out that I didn’t watch any movies on 140 days (includes those from now up to the end of the year), which accounts for 38% of the year. Ner ner!

THE MOVIE LIST


(c) indicates I watched the film at the cinema

(r) indicates the film was a cinematic release this year but I caught it on DVD

1. Sherlock Holmes (c)
2. Bad Lieutenant (r)
3. The Hurt Locker
4. Coraline
5. Extract (r)
6. Monsters Vs Aliens
7. Rocky Balboa
8. Man on Wire
9. Max Payne
10. The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor
11. Primer
12. (500) Days of Summer
13. Daybreakers (c)
14. I love you Beth Cooper
15. The Proposal
16. X Men Origins: Wolverine
17. The Brothers Bloom (r)
18. Push
19. Leatherheads
20. Superman: Doomsday
21. The Square
22. Nick & Norah’s Infinite Playlist
23. Dr Stangelove
24. Half Nelson
25. Max Manus: Man of War
26. Underworld Evolution
27. Underworld: Rise of the Lycans
28. American Pie: Book of Love
29. Hellboy: Blood & Iron
30. Resident Evil: Apocalypse
31. Resident Evil: Extinction
32. Observe & Report
33. American Pie: Beta House
34. The Road (c)
35. Easy Rider
36. Hellboy: Sword of Storms
37. Falling Down
38. The Book of Eli (c)
39. The Pursuit of Happyness
40. Waltz with Bashir
41. In Bruges
42. Casablanca
43. Aliens
44. Last of the Mohicans
45. Four Weddings and a Funeral
46. Bangkok Dangerous
47. American Gangster
48. Deliverance
49. Race to Witch Mountain
50. Up in the Air (c)
51. Butch Cassidy & the Sundance Kid
52. Get Carter
53. Charlie & Boots
54. Knowing
55. Me & Orson Welles (c)
56. Citizen Kane
57. The 6th Day
58. Away We Go
59. Bruno
60. The Lionshare
61. Ponyo (r)
62. Bonnie & Clyde
63. Good Will Hunting
64. Stardust
65. Raging Bull
66. Shooter
67. Vicky Cristina Barcelona
68. Precious (r)
69. Badlands
70. Pulp Fiction
71. A Cock and Bull Story (Only how much I watched)
72. A Prophet (c)
73. Pretty Woman
74. Dr Zhivago
75. The Goonies
76. Edge of Darkness (c)
77. Mystic River
78. The Dukes of Hazzard
79. Jaws
80. Time Bandits
81. Jennifer’s Body
82. The Day the Earth Stood Still (1951)
83. The Day the Earth Stood Still (2009)
84. Heat
85. The Princess and the Frog (c)
86. 12 Angry Men
87. 2001: A Space Odyssey
88. Rocky II
89. The Graduate
90. Rocky III
91. Manhattan
92. Rocky IV
93. Hotel Rwanda
94. Percy Jackson & the Lightning Thief (c)
95. LA Confidential
96. The Wolfman (c)
97. The Jacket
98. True Romance
99. Rocky V
100. The Manchurian Candidate
101. Sahara
102. Annie Hall
103. Breakfast at Tiffany’s
104. Solomon Kane (c)
105. A Serious Man
106. Cocoon
107. Wolf Creek
108. Stormbreaker
109. Some Like it Hot
110. Right at Your Door
111. My Name is Khan (c)
112. Severance
113. Balibo
114. Requiem for a Dream
115.  The Darjeeling Limited
116. From Paris With Love (c)
117. Lethal Weapon
118. The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford
119. Misery
120. State of Play
121. Crazy Heart (c)
122. The Informant
123. Alice in Wonderland (c)
124. The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (c)
125. Green Zone (c)
126. My Neighbour Totoro
127. The Blind Side (c)
128. Shutter Island (c)
129. Hot Tub Time Machine (c)
130. Kick Ass (c)
131. Whip It (r)
132. Repo Men (c)
133. Dear John (c)
134. Crying with Laughter (c)
135. It’s Complicated (r)
136. The Ghost (Writer) (c)
137. Iron Man 2 (c)
138. The Joneses (c)
139. Cheaper by the Dozen
140. Julie & Julia
141. The Men Who Stare at Goats
142. Centurion (c)
143. How to Train your Dragon (c)
144. Fanboys
145. The Final Destination
146. The Disappearance of Alice Creed (c)
147. Pandorum
148. The Time Traveller’s Wife
149. Four Lions (c)
150. Ninja Assasin
151. Alien
152. Newsmakers
153. Alien 3
154. Robin Hood (c)
155. Rock’N’Rolla
156. Date Night (c)
157. The Godfather
158. Defending your Life
159. Sunshine
160. The Godfather Part II
161. The Godfather Part III
162. A Knight’s Tale
163. Risky Business
164. The Last King of Scotland
165. The Dark Crystal
166. Zodiac
167. 13 going on 30
168. Prince of Perisa: The Sands of Time (c)
169. Braveheart
170. Ray
171. The Killer Inside Me (c)
172. Boogie Nights
173. Changeling
174. 4.3.2.1 (c)
175. Thelma & Louise
176. Indiana Jones & the Temple of Doom
177. Death at a Funeral (c)
178. 30 Days of Night
179. The Losers (c)
180. Indiana Jones & the Last Crusade
181. Milk
182. E.T.
183. Not Another Teen Movie
184. The Tooth Fairy (c)
185. Greenberg (c)
186. Superhero Me (c)
187. Skeletons (c)
188. High School (c)
189. The Good Heart (c)
190. The Extra Man (c)
191. Get Low (c)
192. Son of Rambow
193. World’s Greatest Dad (c)
194. Third Star (c)
195. Mean Creek
196. Restrepo (c)
197. Toy Story 3 (c)
198. Jackboots on Whitehall (c)
199. Monsters (c)
200. Eagle vs. Shark
201. The Station Agent
202. L’arnacouer (c)
203. Labyrinth
204. Whatever Works (c)
205. Get him to the Greek (c)
206. Twilight
207. New Moon
208. Eclipse (c)
209. Capote
210. Youth in Revolt (r)
211. Cop Out (r)
212. Shrek Forever After (c)
213. Predators (c)
214. The Pianist
215. Go
216. The Breakfast Club
217. Titanic
218. Alien Resurrection
219. It
220. Inception (c)
221. A Few Good Men
222. Singin’ in the Rain
223. Duck Soup
224. Raw Deal
225. FIT
226. Dirty Harry
227. Splice (c)
228. Synecdoche, New York
229. I Love You Phillip Morris (r)
230. The Bounty Hunter (r)
231. The A Team (c)
232. Gainsbourg (Vie héroïque) (c)
233. The Karate Kid (2010) (c)
234. Commando
235. Resevoir Dogs
236. The Happening
237. Predator
238. Lars and the Real Girl
239. She’s out of My League (r)
240. Collteral Damage
241. The Rebound (c)
242. Conan the Barbarian
243. Predator 2
244. Knight and Day (c)
245. Night at the Museum
246. Magnum Force
247. The Enforcer
248. Evil Dead
249. 3:10 to Yuma
250. Lemony Snicket: A Series of Unfortunate Events
251. The Sorceror’s Apprecntice (c)
252. Mad Max
253. Midnight Meat Train
254. Evil Dead II
255. Salt (c)
256. The Expendables (c)
257. Sudden Impact
258. Rambo III
259. Night at the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian
260. The Dead Pool
261. Full Metal Jacket
262. Scott Pilgrim vs. The World (c)
263. Gattaca
264. Mulholland Drive
265. The Girl who Played with Fire (c)
266. The Italian Job
267. Flags of our Fathers
268. Samurai Fiction
269. Michael Clayton
270. The Human Centipede (r)
271. So I married an Axe Murderer
272. The Illusionist (c)
273. The Switch (c)
274. Grown Ups (c)
275. Dinner for Schmucks (c)
276. Going the Distance (c)
277. The Visitor
278. Swingers
279. Cyrus (c)
280. Tamara Drewe (c)
281. The Other Guys (c)
282. Devil (c)
283. The Town (c)
284. Winter’s Bone (c)
285. The Hole (c)
286. Almost Famous
287. Bronson
288. Buried (c)
289. Carrie
290. The Diving Bell and the Butterfly
291. El Topo
292. Fast Times at Ridgemont High
293. Goodfellas
294. Hard Candy
295. Enthiran: the Robot (c)
296. In the City of Sylvia
297. Junebug
298. A Town Called Panic (c)
299. The Killer
300. The Social Network (c)
301. The Last Boy Scout
302. Moulin Rouge!
303. Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps (c)
304. Night on Earth
305. The Incredible Melting Man
306. Ong Bak 2
307. The Puffy Chair
308. Quiet City
309. Revolutionary Road
310. Sling Blade
311. Time Crimes
312. The Union
313. Videodrome
314. Despicable Me (c)
315. Cemetery Junction (r)
316. Wall Street
317. XX/XY
318. You, Me & Dupree
319. Zidane
320. Red (c)
321. Easy A (c)
322. THX 1138
323. Gone Baby Gone
324. Halloween
325. La Horde
326. Bubba Ho-Tep
327. Paranormal Activity 2 (c)
328. The Arbor (c)
329. Paranormal Activity
330. Burke & Hare (c)
331. Top Gun
332. The Karate Kid
333. Let me In (c)
334. Due Date (c)
335. The Seventh Seal
336. Schindler’s List
337. Skyline (c)
338. We Are What We Are (c)
339. Thirst
340. The Kids Are Alright (c)
341. Mary & Max (r)
342. Chico & Rita (c)
343. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part One (c)
344. MacGruber (r)
345. The Crazies (r)
346. Jackass 3D (c)
347. Unstoppable (c)
348. Machete (c)
349. Megamind (c)
350. The Girl Who Kicked the Hornets’ Nest (c)
351. 12 Rounds
352. The American (c)
353. The Illusionist (2006)
354. Withnail & I
355. Diary of a Wimpy Kid (r)
356. Killers (r)
357. The Warrior’s Way (c)
358. Exit Through the Gift Shop (r)
359. Rare Exports: A Christmas Tale (c)
360. The Chronicles of Narnia: Voyage of the Dawn Treader (c)
361. The Tourist (c)
362. Brighton Rock (c)
363. Smoky and the Bandit
364. Tron Legacy (c)
365. Once
366. Back to the Future (c)
367. Toy Story 2 3D (c)


The Casta La Vista Guide to Christmas TV

December 23, 2010

…on the 10th day of Castmas the Chrazzas gave to me…

The Casta La Vista Guide to Christmas TV (right click and “save as” for download)

 

“Day 10…and some of the housemates…have started turning on each other…”

Sorry, wrong website.

As Christmas Day draws ever closer Casta La Vista finds itself asking the big questions…what the heck are we going to fall asleep in front of this Christmas?

Messrs. Madden and Wakeman (always alphabetical order) have had a trawl through the Christmas TV guides and offer up for your approval their hot tips (TIPS!) of the best movies showing on terrestrial and digital TVs this holiday season.

If you’re a Casta fan (and who isn’t these days?) you’ll know that our advice trumps that of any drunken relative, so sit them in the corner with a mince pie and a blanket and perch yourself cross-legged 4 inches from the screen to enjoy these beauties (I said TIPS!)

We’ll be back tomorrow for a view of whether or not Chrazza Mazza was successful in his attempts to see 365 movies this year…


Putting on a Film Festival – An Insider’s Perspective

December 22, 2010

…on the 9th day of Castmas the Chrazzas gave to me…

In recent episodes Chris and I have made reference to a little side project of mine that has stopped me from performing my Casta La Vista duties to the full.

The time has come for me to lift the lid on these shenanigans and tell you a bit about what I’ve been up to.

This year I have had the good fortune to work on a fully-functioning, whistles and bells film festival called ID Fest thanks to my position at QUAD cinema and gallery in Derby. ID Fest 2010 was QUADs first ever film festival and as its title suggests it was focused around the issue of Identity. For QUADs inaugural festival the topic of Englishness was selected to get the ball rolling; talk about a Pandora’s box!

My relationship at QUAD has spiralled nicely into working projects like this since I began a placement there in January 2010. As the placement came to an end I began to pick up the odd bit of volunteer work; I was asked to chair a fortnightly film group called Cinefriends which has gone from strength to strength over the last 6 months and I am also the voice of QUADs podcast, the QUADcast (2nd best title ever). Eventually these efforts led to a position at the cinema as a Duty Manager, a great opportunity to see the inner workings of a cinema with a customer’s hat on- considering how our work will affect our guests and encouraging them to get involved in the arts as much as our staff do.

I was asked to work on ID Fest as a co-ordinator of the festival. Initially the role was mostly administrative and required me to call and email contacts and groups as part of the festival’s promotion, whilst also liaising with our various guest speakers and visitors in preparation for the weekend. I sat in on and participated in various technical and logistical meetings in the run up to the festival, a reminder that even though the arts is a fantastic thing to work in, at the end of the day it is still a business that requires serious meetings and the odd spreadsheet!

The festival’s organisers Adam and Adam (2 people to which I owe an enormous debt of gratitude) had set up the film schedule and organised plenty of other events to take place over the festival weekend; photography from world renowned photographer Matt Stuart (Google ‘photographer’ and he’s the first name that comes up!) based around The Great British Weekend; a music night in our cafe bar playing only English enthused music; and an event called Movioke! – yes, it’s exactly what it sounds like – hosted by yours truly meant that there was something for everyone during ID Fest that could leave participants (hopefully) thinking about the wider issues.

The main focus of my work was in producing a series of short films that aimed to talk to the local community and find its perspective on English Identity. QUAD commissioned filmmaker Doug Smith to create a collection of short films that we could show before and after each film during the festival. These films would hopefully pull together the thoughts and feelings of a wide cross-section of the Derbyshire community to promote the fact that this festival was all about audiences asking and answering questions themselves.

My main task was putting together a filming schedule that Doug and his co-director Ben Wigley could work from in a way that made sure they spoke to as many people as possible in the most efficient way possible.

Step one was getting in touch with community and social groups in order to gauge interest and put together a list of participants. I called and emailed over 100 groups in Derbyshire and eventually created a month long itinerary that ensured that each time we were filming we were speaking to a healthy number of different voices.

I would then attend the shoots with Ben and Doug, talk to the group leaders and participants, help arrange the set, and assist in the interviews whilst the directors manned the camera.

At the time I was simply doing what I thought was necessary, I have since been told that I basically acted as a producer on the film; which was nice! Banged that one straight on to the CV!

Our original brief was to produce a collection of one to two minute long films – about 15 in total – that would amount to around 25 minutes accumulative time. In the end we made 26 separate shorts that totalled 55 minutes. We conducted 75 interviews over the space of a month and collected 12 hours of raw footage that took Ben and Doug over 2 weeks to edit down. Examples of the finished product can be found here, here and here.

The weekend itself was probably the most relaxed part of the whole experience; I schmoozed with scholarly and cinematic types (keeping them fuelled with coffee and alcohol as they saw fit), introduced a few films myself and even found time to catch the opening 15 minutes of Four Lions! As the festival closed on Sunday there was only one question starting to niggle on my mind; what will the next ID Fest be all about?

Co-ordinating and marketing a festival often feels like an uphill battle. Have you got the brochure into as many hands as possible? Are you making the most efficient use of your time and energy? Have you updated Twitter or the Facebook page today? Have you followed up that email with a phone call yet? Have you found time to have a cup of tea?

At the end of it all you learn that you are only human and when those doors open for the first screening of the festival and the people start to show up you realise that everything is out of your hands now and the rest is up to fate.

Co-ordinating/Producing/Whatevering ID Fest was an unforgettable experience that gave me more insight into the day-to-day operations of an independent cinema than a year’s worth of on-set reports ever could – and at the end of it all I am happy to say that given the chance I would do it all over again.

Epilogue: A word of gratitude should also be made to Peter Munford, a work experience chap who was put under my supervision and burdened with any number of tedious and mindless tasks in the final weeks before the festival began, which he completed with the utmost enthusiasm. Had he known then what he knows now, that I too had no idea what I was doing, maybe he would’ve sworn at me a few more times. As it was, great work, and thank God he had sat-nav on his mobile!



Guest Review(?) – Tron Legacy

December 21, 2010

…on the 8th day of Castmas the Chrazzas gave to me…

Guest Review – Tron Legacy (right click and “save as” for download)

Day 8!

This time last year Casta La Vista was cursing its luck at approaching the Christmas break knowing we would be unable to review Avatar – in case you haven’t heard it was one of 2009’s biggest movies – in a regular episode.

Thankfully friend of the show Tim Smith from Canada sent us over a fantastic guest review and we were able to produce this as respite during the holiday season.

This year’s big Christmas release is Tron Legacy and yet again we find ourselves without an episode to put a review inside. However we do have our shiny-new 12 Days of Castmas roster, so we thought we would sit a few Casta-friends around the Christmas fire, roast some marshmallows, and have bit of a natter about December’s must see 3D extravangaza, which some lucky pups were fortunate enough to experience in IMAX.

Well that was the intention anyway… but then technology got in the way. That’s what happens when you dedicate an episode to something apparently… So what you have instead is Chris and I being complete winners (as always) and talking about a rather enjoyable movie…

Stay tuned for Day 9 flying down your chimney tomorrow…


Five Movies I’ve Rewatched in 2010…

December 20, 2010

…on the 7th day of Castmas the Chrazzas gave to me…

As I’m sure you no doubt know, I’ve been battling my way through three hundred and sixty five movies this year. One of the conditions I set myself was that all of the movies had to be ones that I hadn’t seen before and as such I’ve resisted watching movies I’ve seen before wherever possible to fully maximise my chances of achieving this monumental feat. There have however been a few occasions throughout the year where someone has suggested we watch a movie that I’ve already seen and I’ve happily obliged. These five are the best of the bunch and needless to say if I was prepared to rewatch them whilst trying to catch as many new movies as possible, they all come come highly recommended.

1. South Park: Bigger, Longer and Uncut
Speculatively written off before its release as a complete waste of time, South Park The Movie showed that the duo of Parker and Stone aren’t just potty mouthed idiots out to cause offense and earn a quick buck, whilst also demonstrating an expert use of satire that has gone on to influence all the pair’s subsequent work, as well as the course of the TV show itself. Perhaps one of the most reflexive movies ever written, South Park feeds off its own notoriety and masterfully prods the finger back at critics who used the TV series as a scapegoat for “the collapse of society” and every misdemeanour carried out by a viewer of the show. All that would be for naught though if it wasn’t such fun to watch, and as long as your on board with its comic stylings you’re on for ninety minutes of pure hilarity. Even years later I still don’t think this movie is given the kudos it deserves; it’s so much more than just another lazy TV to big screen cash in and contains such great music that it baffles me why it isn’t more widely regarded as a great modern musical. With the advancement of the animation, writing and technology behind current episodes of the TV series, I’d love nothing more than to see a sequel.

2. I Love You, Man
Undoubtedly one of my highlights of 2009 and a film I know I’m going to keep watching over and over as time goes on. Peter Klavin (Rudd) has recently got engaged but has a problem, he doesn’t have any guy friends to be his best man. Klavin eventually meets Sydney Fife (Segel) and what follows isn’t quite what you’d expect… I Love You Man sneakily takes the classic rom-com formula and stands it on its head; delivering a movie that is not only hilarious but is also genuinely touching. I like Paul Rudd a lot but have never really seen him as a strong leading character, but his well worn straight man routine gets its strongest outing here thanks largely to how straight Jason “how have I not been in more movies yet?!” Segel plays it right back at him; that’s not to say that it isn’t funny though, as this movie contains some of the best awkward humour of any film in recent memory and is perhaps the most quotable movie since Anchorman.

You got it Jobin!

3. Team America
Another entry for Parker and Stone? Sure enough they once again take a potentially volatile subject and point fun at it in such a way that makes viewers ask “hey what’s the fuss all about?!” Team America focuses on the eponymous band of do gooders who travel the world doing whatever they must to eliminate the terrorists that threaten world peace, whilst inadvertently proving themselves more effective than the terrorists themselves. From the moment the film opens and we’re greeted by puppets controlling puppets, we’re treated to ninety minutes split evenly between the best puppetry we’re ever likely to see on the big screen, and jokes made at the limitations faced when using marionettes. As explosive as it is skilful and as stupid as it is well observed, Team America proves that Parker and Stone have got a lot more in them than just South Park – even if it does run the names of Casta favourites Clooney and Damon through the mud whilst it does so.

AMERICA! FUCK YEAH!

4. 17 Again
My initial resistance to this film last year proved to be hugely unfounded. Knowing little more of Zac Efron than that he was the smiley singing punchworthy guy from the High School Musical trilogy, this film correctly changed my opinion of him to potentially being one of the most watchable new performers on the big screen, and (if he plays his cards right in the future)  surely one of the biggest names in Hollywood. The classic “one more chance at youth” narrative is given a run over once again but, for potentially one of the only times for movies of this genre with the same target audience, isn’t given the heavy handed sanitising that usually comes with the standard *cough Disney cough*  big studio backing. Efron proves himself a joy to watch throughout and events on screen prove to be just as funny and awkward as you imagine they will be. A great addition to the ranks of the teen comedy.

5. Back to the Future
I wrestled long and hard with whether or not to include this in my count of 365 being as its cinematic rerelease gave me the first opportunity I’ve ever had to watch it on the silver screen. However after much deliberating I decided that this (along with Toy Story 2) couldn’t really count, as the digitally remastered audio and visuals (and indeed the 3D in TS2’s case) didn’t constitute enough for me to count it as a “new movie experience”. Lucky then that I have this opportunity to talk a little more about it.
Cast your mind back and you may well remember that Chris and I went nuts for this back in Episode 24 – Cast Boot and for jolly good reason. Twenty five years on and it’s still every bit as funny, clever and charming as it was upon its release and I don’t think another twenty five are going to do it any harm either. If you didn’t catch this on the big screen for its rerelease then you missed out on one of the best cinematic experiences of the year.

Be sure to come back tomorrow for day eight of the Twelve Days of Castmas, a festive treat with some very special guests!


Audio Commentary – Home Alone

December 19, 2010

…on the 6th day of Castmas the Chrazzas gave to me…

Casta Commentary – Home Alone (right click and “save as” for download)

Welcome to Day 6 of Casta La Vista’s 12 days of Castmas. By the end of this post we will be exactly half way through our journey towards Christmas Day. Exciting!

Hopefully you’ve been enjoying the gifts we have provided so far. Have you had any pleasant surprises? Have there been any that you have opened and wondered if you could return it? Surely not!

For Day 6 we offer up something a bit different, another Casta La Vista first: Please sit back and enjoy with us a screening of the 1990 classic Home Alone as we introduce Casta La Vista’s inaugural AUDIO COMMENTARY! Dun dun duuuuuuuuuuurn!

Chris and I have sat down together (via internet technology) and watched Home Alone at the same time whilst chatting total (movie-related) nonsense.

If you have a copy of Home Alone to hand then shove it in your DVD player and join us on this new adventure. If don’t have access to a TV screen, maybe you can still listen along and enjoy the commentary as we dissect one of Hollywood’s best Christmas movies.

Let us know in the comments section or by the usual methods if you like what we’ve done here, and if so maybe we’ll do more in the future.

Thanks must go to Film Sack for having the idea in the first place.

See you tomorrow for another post but in the meantime…Enjoy!

NOTE: Since recording this audio commentary (we did it a couple of weeks ago- spot the many points where we try to make light of this!) we’ve moved a few of our 12Days Posts around a bit, so sorry if some of our references are a little bit out of sync- by the end of Day 12 it will all make sense- Promise!