The 1st Annual Cheapskate Film Festival

Thursday, 23 June 2011


Every so often someone will reference a 'classic' film in a conversation. If it so happens that you haven't seen that film, the person is likely to react incredulously, dragging you into a world of consumer guilt.
"It's like that scene in Fight Club where he's kickin' his own head in in the car park."
"Yeah."
"You've seen Fight Club, right?"
"Err... no."
"What?"
"No. I haven't seen it."
"Fight Club? You haven't seen Fight Club? Oh, right, no worries then, It's only one of the best films ever FUCKING made."
"Never got round to it."
"You got round to watching P.S I love you, though, didn't ya?"
"Yeah but that was just to cover up the awkward silence after I did a sicky burp at that girl's house."

And so on. I signed up for a Netflix 1-month free trial and made a list of 15 films that I haven't been arsed to watch, but that I know I should have watched.
Because if you're a reasonably tasteful person, there's thousands of films, songs, books that you should have consumed by now. And you know that you'll never be a real human being until you do.

To save you the time, here's a digest of the questions each film raises, and the profound lessons one can learn from them:

'Casablanca' - U.S - 1951

Question:  Who keeps cutting up onions around Ingrid Bergman?
Lesson:    The problems of three little people don't amount to a hill o' beans in this crazy world.

'M' (Murderers Among Us) - Germany - 1931

Question: To what extent are compulsive criminals responsible for their actions, and who is responsible for punishing them?
Lesson:    If your handwriting exhibits 'swelling sweeps' then you're a paedo.

The Maltese Falcon - U.S - 1955

Question:  Why did they cast that old woman in the role of the 'sultry femme fatale' ?
Lesson:    Never trust anyone. Ever.

'Les Diaboliques' - France - 1954

Question: What happened to the bastard's body?
Lesson:    Don't kill folk if you'll go all 'Latina' and fall apart afterwards.

'Paris, Texas' - U.S - 1984

Question: What's he been eating in that desert for 4 years, scorpions?
Lesson:   The harder you try to repress the 'escape urge' of an unhappy lover, the harder they'll try to escape.

Tony Manero - Chile - 2008

Question:  What does a vain, cheating, selfish, insecure murdering sociopath have in common with military dictator Augusto Pinochet?
Lesson:    If you want to ruin someone's life, simply take a shit on their white suit.

The Good, the Bad and the Ugly - Italy - 1966

Question: Why were you standing there blabbering when you could have got the first shot in?
Lesson:   Soldiers give their lives for the government, outlaws keep their lives for themselves.

Kick-Ass - U.S - 2010

Question: Did they even have to pay Nic Cage to do this film, or was it just another weekend in the life?
Lesson: You don't need superpowers in order to make a stand against fuckheads

Nosferatu - Germany - 1929

Question:  Now does this fella look a bit weird, or does everyone in Transylvania have pointy ears and privet hedges for eyebrows?
Lesson:    Beware, so that his shadow cannot burden your sleep with terrible nightmares and that.

'Ascenseur pour L'Echafaud' - France - 1958

Question: Could shit films like Pearl Harbour have been salvaged by a cool-as-fuck Miles Davis soundtrack?
Lesson:   Never leave incriminating photos lying around.

Citizen Kane - U.S - 1941

Question: Isn't it weird how a film can be both brilliant and the most overrated film of all time?
Lesson: You can only bend people's will so far before it causes them to snap.

'Seven Samarui' - Japan - 1954

Question:   Is it the soldier who wins after a victorious battle, or does the victory belong to those who employ him?
Lesson:     Sometimes a 3-and-a-half hour film is worth watching.

Lost Highway - U.S - 1997

Question:  What the fuck just happened?
Lesson:     Don't tailgate.

'Network' - U.S - 1976

Question:  Is anything in the world more sacred than the pacification of corporate shareholders?
Lesson:    Don't sacrifice your marriage for high-cheekboned young career-women if you're a wrinkly cantankerous auld hack.

'The Isle' - Korea - 2000

Question:  Where does a director get the arrogance to drown a live, caged bird in the name of 'making symbolic art' ? Use a stuffed bird, you pretentious, twatty bastard.
Lesson:    Tragic damaged weirdos attract other tragic damaged weirdos. Tragedy will ensue.

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