Wednesday, May 4, 2011

"Mrs. Robinson, you're trying to seduce me."

In my continuing quest to see all of the "Classics" on my Netflix queue, I have recently watched The Graduate and One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest.

The Graduate
was nominated for seven Academy Awards in 1967, but only won for Best Director. It was definitely an interesting movie, but I did not really like it. Dustin Hoffman plays a recent college graduate who starts having an affair with the wife of his father's business partner, Mrs. Robinson. He then ends up falling in love with Mrs. Robinson's daughter, Elaine. However, Dustin Hoffman's character Ben, was just really annoying. He asked a lot of questions and was kind of a stalker. Anne Bancroft was also a little creepy as Mrs. Robinson. It does contain some iconic scenes and lines, so it is interesting to see them in context. However, for me, the only thing good that came from this movie was the Simon and Garfunkel song.

On the other hand, I really enjoyed One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest. It stars Jack Nicholson as a prisoner who has been transferred to a mental hospital and then rallies the other patients together to rise against the evil Nurse Ratched. It won five Academy Awards in 1976, including Best Picture, and nominated in four other categories. Because this film was entering a world that had never before been explored in film, a mental institution, the director felt that they should use unknown actors to play the other patients. However, several of these actors have gone on to become more famous. I am actually a little ashamed to admit, though, that it literally took me half the movie to figure out that Martini was played by Danny DeVito. I clearly was not paying very close attention. A few other familiar faces include Brad Dourif from Deadwood, Christopher Lloyd from Back to the Future (among other things) and Vincent Schiavelli, who Buffy fans will remember as Miss Calendar's Uncle Enyos. This movie was a little long, but definitely worth checking out.

As well as several other "Classic" movies, I am still working my way through the rest of my Netflix queue. On the docket for next week is Witness starring Harrison Ford. I also plan to check out the movie Once, which is an independent musical from 2006 which won the Academy Award for Best Original Song in 2007.