catapult magazine

catapult magazine

Vol 4, Num 1 :: 2005.01.14 — 2005.01.27


Film 2004

Asterisk Award for Film in 2004: Napoleon Dynamite

What movie gave you the most joy last year and why?

W.B.: Although the movie that impacted me the most was probably Hotel Rwanda

, which made the depravity of humans clearer than anything I have experienced since reading H. Selby’s Last Exit to Brooklyn, the movie that brought me the most joy was Napoleon Dynamite. Although I tend to prefer nerd films that have more to say about the intellectual aspects of being a nerd, and less to say about the social ineptitude, this movie did an amazing job of getting the audience to sympathize with Napoleon, and even more so, with Deb. Runner up: The Incredibles was a lot of fun.

B.D.: Garden State because it gave an authentic look at both the pain and joy inherent in love. I also loved Napoleon Dynamite. Again, so real and painful, but in a hilarious way.

W.D.: Napoleon Dynamite; it’s hysterical the whole way through and has a great ?feel-good? ending that isn’t cheesy.

C.N.: Return of the King (it’s the only movie I saw in the theater). I loved the scale of the epic and I love the story, though I found the ending a bit hackneyed and stale.

A.S: Walter Salles’ The Motorcycle Diaries. The story of a young man coming of age by seeing the harsh realities of the world and being energized by them reminded me of my own story and renewed my commitment to justice.

J.H.: The Station Agent for a number of reasons. The first is that it was a complete surprise, one of those under-the-radar gems that you rent on a whim from the Movie Barn and can’t believe that you hadn’t seen it before. Second, it’s the first film I’ve seen starring a “little person” with a role that has dignity and purpose. Third, the casting is brilliant, and the dialogue is right on. The character Joe is absolutely beautiful and hysterical. Fourth: lots of trains. Fifth: A beautiful exploration of community.

J.V.: Garden State. The movie offered a very intimate look into the aspects of forgiveness and grace as well as overcoming the struggles of lost identity and the rediscovering love and passion.

K.V.: I, Robot?it was a tribute to the greatest science fiction writer of all time, Isaac Asimov.

What film helped you to see God’s wonderful world in a new light? How do you see things differently because of this film?

A.S.: In the best year ever for documentaries, my favorite was The Corporation, which revealed many sad truths about our corporate culture.

W.B.: Not sure this quite fits the category, but Supersize Me helped me to see McDonald?s in a new light. I had already cut my consumption of the Evil Empire’s “food” down to once a month, but Supersize Me moved me into the Nuclear Ban category. I would say Farenheit 9-11, but it more confirmed things that I already believed than helped me see things in a new light. It did make me laugh a lot.

B.D.: Maria, Full of Grace, a Colombian film. It made me reconsider my ideas of justice and being law-abiding.

J.V.: Around The Bend. The film offers an introspective view into family dynamics as well as the history and secrets that chain us down and forge who we are causing us to forget or miss the beauty of generational wisdom and familiar love.

W.D.: Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind raised some interesting questions/thoughts about the nature of our minds and memories.

What was the biggest waste of money on film last year?

B.D.: I Heart Huckabees. It looked promising, but I hated it. I definitely do not heart huckabees.

J.V.: Baby Geniuses 2 and Garfield (a very strong tie).

K.V.: Alexander.

W.D.: The Ladykillers; gratutious cussing and a general lack of funniness.

Discussion: Film 2004

What would you add to the members? responses? What films stood out for you in 2004?

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