This sticker is dangerous and inconvenient but I do love Fig Newtons

Sunday, July 20, 2008

The New York in the Movies Blog-a-thon (Updated! 2/24/09)

See below for updates

Welcome to the "Grand Central Station" of the New York in the Movies Blog-a-thon. This is the post that will have links to all the other posts both here at 12 Grand in Checking, and elsewhere around the 'sphere. Things start on June 29th, and they'll continue all week. Look for my Highly Personal Top New York Movie Moments, which will be a continuous series all week, and also my Favorite New Yorkers (a few of them, anyway!), who will be mentioned throughout the week as well. And also a variety of other pieces of interest, if I can -- I'm not quite sure why I decided to do a blog-a-thon the week before I leave for Los Angeles!

Anyhoo... If you have something you want to contribute to the blog-a-thon, drop me an email and I'll link it in the main body of this post, or just put the link in the comment box. And a big Thank You to those who got the word out and linked to this blog-a-thon; those who have written or are planning to write something; and those who have taken the time to stop by and read a few lines.

The New York in the Movies Blog-a-thon (updated 2/24/09):
Noel Vera takes a look at King Kong Old School and King Kong 3.0
Filmbrain says: "New York, I love you, but you're bringing me down"
Self-Styled Siren looks at the New York City of the Mind
My NY, a musing on New York as "the biggest collection of small towns, jammed close togther" and the movies that show us this New York, over at gee bobg
Hercules in New York(!) at Pluck You Too!
Radiator Heaven's look at the comedy Quick Change with Bill Murray, Geena Davis, and Randy Quaid
James Bond's New York City Movie at Ultimate James Bond Fan Blog
The Derelict's Highly Personal Top New York Movie Moments: #1 and #2
The Derelict's Highly Personal Top New York Movie Moments: #3
A few of My Favorite New Yorkers (updated 7/1)
New York Actualities
A Footlight Parade of Gold Diggers on 42nd Street (update coming)
No Time for Comedy (also part of the Great Movie Watching Challenge)

"In the end, the linkage [between New York and the movies] is fundamental. Like New York, film is big. Like New York, it is larger than life. And like New York, it embodies -- even defines -- qualities of romance, glamour, danger, adventure. What New York is, film by its very nature has tended to extend and heighten. If possible, film has transformed New York -- a city that looms so large by almost every measure -- to an even higher plane. It becomes an elemental force, transcending any earthly place: a super city, a mythic city, a dream city."

James Sanders, Celluloid Skyline: New York and the Movies

Monday, July 14, 2008

Do you know who the coolest people in L.A. are?

The people at Act One, of course! I'm in the writing program this summer and I can't believe how utterly, amazingly, fascinatingly cool the people are. The instructors, the people who run things, my fellow students: all awesome. I'm wondering who let the bum (me) in here, frankly, because I don't deserve to be with such talented people. So if I'm not writing a lot for the next few weeks, it's because I'm hanging out with all these awesome Act One people and having the best time of my life.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Woody's New York

"I selectively show my New York through my heart. I'm always known as a New York filmmaker who eschews Hollywood and in fact denigrates it. No one sees that the New York I show is the New York I know only from Hollywood films that I grew up on -- penthouses, white telephones, beautiful streets, waterfronts, going through Central Park on carriage rides. Locals say to me, 'Where is this New York?' Well, this New York exists in Hollywood movies of the 1930s and 1940s. The New York that Hollywood showed the world, which never really existed, is the New York that I show the world because that's the New York I fell in love with. A friend said to me after seeing me walk out of my house in Hannah and Her Sisters -- showing beautiful black-and-white doors over on East Seventy-second Street -- 'Where are these places? I saw New York in your movies with foreigners and fans in Belgium and France and Italy. When I came to New York I wanted to seee the New York I grew up loving in your films. It's more beautiful in them than it is in reality.'

"The fact is, when I first chose to portray New York as a character in a movie in a significant way, in Manhattan, I made the film in black and white because most of those movies I grew up on were in black and white. In those films you would see nightclubs and the kind of streets we'vev been talking about; actors would be walking on Riverside Drive or on Park Avenue, or coming out of their houses with furs on and getting into cabs. And, you know, where Jimmy Stewart goes through the park in that movie [Born to Dance, 1936] singing "Easy to Love" -- the Cole Porter song -- is exactly where I placed the scene with Mariel Hemingway and myself in the horse-drawn cab in Manhattan, because that's where I got it from. I feel I owe nothing to reality in my movies in that sense. That's my vision of the city and I'm creating a work of fiction, and that's what I want to create."

from Conversations with Woody Allen by Eric Lax (p. 266)

Monday, July 7, 2008

Coming into Los Angeles...

So, I didn't really finish everything I had planned for the blog-a-thon. Yeah, I failed. FAIL!

But, I'll be getting around to it eventually. The problem, you see, is that I'm in L.A. right now. And I'll be here for a month. So last week I was preparing for my trip and the whole watching movies and writing inane comments about them thing just wasn't always possible amidst the packing and the whatnot. But now that I'm here and settled in, I'll be able to get back to the blogging.

Even though I'm in Hollywood for the time being, it's still gonna be a New York state-of-mind around here.