My Top Ten Samuel L. Jackson Movies

Happy Birthday to Samuel L. Jackson, who is 69 today.

I love Jackson! I’m not sure if I ever see him as anything other than Samuel L. Jackson in his roles… But that’s okay since he’s cool.

And, holy crap, Jackson has been in loads of stuff. He has 167 credits with another 10 “upcoming” roles listed at IMDb. I know he does a lot of cameos so I’ve included every movie I’ve seen where he’s been given a credit (other than Inglourious Basterds, where he apparently provided an “uncredited voice”). I’ll be honest – I don’t remember him in some of the below films. And some I saw so long ago that I barely remember the films themselves so I’ve left them off the main list & listed them separately.

So, counting down to my favorites (films, not performances) & including everything I’ve seen, here are My Top Ten Samuel L. Jackson Movies:

29-21:

29. Cell
28. Sea Of Love
27. The Long Kiss Goodnight
26. A Time To Kill
25. Jumper
24. Deep Blue Sea
23. Die Hard: With A Vengeance
22. Snakes On A Plane
21. Big Game

Top Twenty:

20. The Hateful Eight
19. Patriot Games
18. Miss Peregrine’s Home For Peculiar Children
17. Out Of Sight
16. Kingsman: The Secret Service
15. 1408
14. Do The Right Thing
13. Coming To America
12. Fluke
11. Unbreakable

Top Ten:

10. Django Unchained

9. True Romance

8. The Avengers Movies

7. The Star Wars Prequels

6. Pulp Fiction

5. Jackie Brown

4. Kill Bill: Vol 2

3. Goodfellas

2. The Incredibles

1. Jurassic Park

Some I Saw But Don’t Remember Well Enough To Include In List:
Menace II Society, Juice, Lakeview Terrace, Loaded Weapon, Sphere, Changing Lanes

Some I’ve Not Seen:
The Hitman’s Bodyguard, Kong: Skull Island, The Legend Of Tarzan, RoboCop (2014), Turbo, Old Boy (2013), The Other Guys, Black Snake Moan, Coach Carter, The xXx Movies, The 51st State, Shaft, Rules Of Engagement, The Red Violin, The Negotiator, 187, Hard Eight, Trees Lounge, Jungle Fever, Mo’ Better Blues, The Exorcist III, Betsy’s Wedding

Mass Hysteria! – Art Show About Crowds In Movies

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I love all the stuff artist Truck Torrence has done (you can view his site & illustrations here: 100% Soft).

He has an art show opening today in Los Angeles called Mass Hysteria! which is all about crowds in various favorite pop culture movies & TV shows. I’m not sure which one is my favorite but the Kill Bill one is possibly the most adorable. 🙂 He also mentions having done ones for Big Trouble In Little China & The Warriors – I’d love to see the Warriors one!

You can see a few more of the pieces & find details of the art show HERE.

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The Ten Most Iconic Female Movie Characters Blogathon

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I was nominated by my buddy Mike over at Screenkicker to carry on this wonderful “blogging relay” started by Dell On Movies (you can see the original post HERE plus the links showing all the participants and the changes this list has gone through HERE).

Here are Dell’s rules:

A list of 10 iconic female movie characters has been made. That list will be assigned to another blogger who can then change it by removing one character (describing why they think she should not be on the list) and replacing it with another one (also with motivation) and hand over the baton to another blogger. Once assigned, that blogger will have to put his/her post up within a week. If this is not the case the blogger who assigned it has to reassign it to another blogger.

And this is the list that has been passed onto me:

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I love the idea of this blogathon as I’ve always felt there aren’t enough good roles for women in movies. I’ve thought about this for days and, the truth is, it was very hard to choose one as I think the majority of those I would choose are already (or have already been) on this list. You CANNOT beat Ellen Ripley or Princess Leia and I’ll now be following this blogathon closely to see if anyone dares to remove either of them. 😉

I have a large list I worked from (I take these things very seriously!) and there were certain things I didn’t like about some of the characters on my list. Too often, women are portrayed as either:

1) crazy or
2) nymphomaniacs or
3) victims

Most of the characters on my list fell into at least one of these categories so I tried to not pick one who was just one of these things without there being a good reason for their character being that way or without the character making the best of their situation. For instance, Fatal Attraction is kind of a guilty pleasure of mine and Glenn Close gives a memorable performance but I’m certainly not going to choose a character that makes all us women look like irrational “psycho bitches”. The same goes for Kathy Bates in Misery.

I didn’t have any from “category 2” on my working list but the number of female “victims” in movies is huge. It’s actually quite sad (look at horror movies – us poor women!). However, I think “victim” is sometimes fine as long as the character deals with it in the right way. Plus, it often gives the character more depth. So I’ve actually decided to remove & add characters who both fall into the category of “victim”.

I remove:

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And I add (one who was previously added then removed):

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My Reasoning:

I’ve read the first book & watched the first (original) The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo. Lisbeth is certainly a deep character and her look is very iconic. However, (and remember I only have knowledge of the first story), she’s such a thoroughly damaged character to the point that it made me uncomfortable. She LOOKS tough but she’s a complete mess inside. I know I should watch the rest of the films at some point but, based on what I know of her so far, I don’t think she belongs on a list with these all-time greats. Plus, I just don’t love the film – it feels very out of place when you see the classics on this list.

I like Tarantino’s films but none of them are exactly all-time favorites of mine. The Bride, however, is a great character and one I feel is worthy of being in a list of iconic female movie characters as I think she’ll still be thought of in 20 years time when similar lists to this are being made whereas I’m not sure Lisbeth Salander will be. I know Tarantino is always heavily influenced by older films and that The Bride will be an amalgamation of various characters but, hell – it works! The movie may be a little shallow but it’s good fun and, dammit, I LOVE seeing a female being the lead role in a violent action movie and seriously kicking some ass. She falls into the victim category but, unlike Lisbeth Salander, she gets her head together and does exactly what she sets out to do. Her look may also be borrowed from Bruce Lee but, again – it IS a great look. Who doesn’t instantly think of Uma in the yellow outfit when they hear the words “Kill Bill“? So… There you go. That’s my choice as I can’t choose Ellen Ripley. 🙂

My Nomination:

Wow – that was all very wordy. Sorry about that! Don’t know what happened there. It’s time for me to shut up and pass the baton to another blogger. I choose an amazing female blogger who I am confident will make a great decision: Zoe from The Sporadic Chronicles Of A Beginner Blogger. Take it away, Zoe! You have one week. 🙂

Oh, and can I just give a shoutout to one of my favorite “chick flicks”? I couldn’t choose just one of these women as I think they go together and shouldn’t be separated so I’m giving a shoutout to Thelma & Louise. They’re victims but, damn, they have good fun for a while! (Especially with the lovely Brad Pitt). 😉

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Kill Bill: Vol 1 (2003) IMDB Top 250 Guest Review

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For today’s IMDB Top 250 guest review, we have the wonderful Abbi of Where The Wild Things Are. Abbi has a fabulous site filled with everything from movie reviews to fashion to top ten lists to health & fitness to cooking. Cooking! I always feel totally inferior whenever I look at her site because the closest I come to cooking is popping crumpets in the toaster and the closest I come to exercising is walking to the nearest bus stop. And her outfits are great! I have no style. And she’s funny & her Film Friday movie reviews always crack me up. Basically, she’s cooler than me in every way so you really need to check out her site if you haven’t already. 🙂

There are still some movies up for grabs if anyone wants to do a guest IMDB Top 250 review. You can find the list HERE.

Now over to Abbi for her thoughts on the kick-ass Quentin Tarantino film Kill Bill: Vol 1, IMDB rank 152 out of 250

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Kill Bill vol 1

In this first instalment Quentin Tarantino’s Kill Bill films a young, pregnant bride (Uma Thurman) is viciously attacked on her wedding day by her former associates and left for dead. Five years later she wakes suddenly from a coma and embarks on an unstoppable revenge mission intent not only to avenge the five years she has lost but also the life of her unborn child. Her plan is to pick off the former members of the Viper Squad, O-Ren Ishii (Lucy Liu), Vernita Green (Vivica A. Fox), Elle Driver (Daryl Hannah) and Budd (Michael Madsen), finishing eventually with Bill (David Carradine).
And really that is pretty much the sum of the entire plot of Kill Bill, so what is it that makes sounds like a pretty run of the mill revenge movie that exciting?
First has got to be the casting of The Bride (who happens to be one of my favourite movie characters of all time). Uma Thurman is able not only to carry off her unmeasured fury but also the vulnerability caused by her confused and damaged emotional state. As a former assassin The Bride is a vicious and ruthless killer, and obviously a total badass, but she also feels pain, loss and fear, which makes her someone that it’s easy to identify and even sympathise with.
Second is the fact that Tarantino is not afraid to borrow from every and any genre he likes the look of all in one glorious hotch potch. From Western, to traditional Kung-Fu, to anime to multiple other things that I probably didn’t even register, he throws everything in everything but the kitchen sink. It shouldn’t work, and in the hands of a less skilled director it probably wouldn’t but somehow the genre switches work as a way of creating episodes within this already truncated part of a whole, which means the story at hand never gets tired. It also highlights the constant juxtapositions that crop up throughout the film. One of The Bride’s most noteworthy opponents is Gogo (Chiaki Kuriyama) a seventeen year old Japanese schoolgirl, who giggles behind her hand but is also lethal with a mace. And one of the most violent kills happens in a beautiful Japanese garden where the colour of the blood spilled is that much more vibrant spilled across the snow.
Third is the cinematography. Kill Bill vol 1 is a riot of colour interspersed with black and white that changes the perspective and emotions from one scene to the next and often within scenes. In so doing Tarantino creates intense and memorable visual portraits, the most iconic being The Bride in her yellow jumpsuit. This is mixed with creative, razor sharp fight choreography and oceans and oceans of cartoonish blood that remind us that this story is set in a hyper reality that we can only enter as bystanders.
Finally both the soundtrack and the use of sound in Kill Bill vol 1 are used mindfully to accompany and intensify the visual attack taking place onscreen, with the soundtrack always matching the genre that is currently at play.
The overall effect is that the viewer is left desperate for more after the cliff hanger ending.
5/5

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Competition for the Primark Christmas sale had become particularly fierce.

My Top Movies Directed By Quentin Tarantino

**I updated this list March 2017 to add Jackie Brown & The Hateful Eight and September 2019 to add Once Upon A Time… In Hollywood.**

Here we go! Counting down to my favorite (and not including his guest director credit on Sin City, a movie I don’t really like anyway), here are all the films I’ve seen that were directed by Quentin Tarantino:

9. The Hateful Eight (I wasn’t really a fan of this one)

8. Inglourious Basterds

7. Death Proof
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6. Django Unchained
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5. Once Upon A Time… In Hollywood

4. Jackie Brown

3. Pulp Fiction
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2. Reservoir Dogs
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1. Kill Bill (both of them – I count them as one)
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Inglourious Basterds was SO close to being above Death Proof, which few people will agree with. First of all, I should probably give Basterds a re-watch as I was especially wussy about violence that day and didn’t watch it closely enough except for the parts where Christoph Waltz or the lovely Melanie Laurent were on screen. It’s a much better film than Death Proof. But… Death Proof was fun and I really liked it. Zoe Bell was cool. I’m a girl and I like girls who kick ass (which is why Kill Bill is number one). So there you go!

AND I have an embarrassing confession to make: I’m a big film fan yet there’s one Tarantino-directed film that I haven’t seen. So I’ll update this list if I decide that Jackie Brown deserves a place in the Top Five. (Update – I’ve seen it now!) 😉

Now off to finally write my review for Django Unchained (Review done now!). I’ll leave you with a shitty haiku summing up how I feel about Tarantino’s crazily violent films:

Tarantino films
Are really brilliant but I
Wish I could watch them

**I need to point out that the hubby and I are having an argument over how many syllables are in the word “brilliant”. I think this is a US/UK difference. The way I say it, it’s two, dammit! Making my haiku correct…

My Top Five Severed Limbs In Movies

I normally start with my favorite with these lists but I’ll go backwards for this one, starting with number five:

5. Planet Terror

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Because, really, what’s cooler than a machine gun for a leg?

4. Monty Python And The Holy Grail

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It’s just a flesh wound!

3. Star Wars: Episode IV – A New Hope

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So many to choose from. Could do an entire list with just Star Wars limbs, hands, etc. But I like the Ponda Baba arm-severing in the Cantina. And Robot Chicken made this one REALLY funny. If I was a Star Wars geek I could go on about the arm on the floor not being the correct one to match what Ponda Baba’s arms actually look like or whatever. But I can’t say I ever noticed. Because I’m a girl and not that geeky. :-p

2. Kill Bill

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Again – so many to choose from in just this one movie. But I’ve gone with poor Sofie Fatale.

1. Teeth

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Okay – I may be stretching it a bit on what’s considered a limb? I won’t go into any detail – not necessary for anyone who’s seen the movie. And I choose the final “severing” in this movie as there’s more than one.

(OMG she didn’t include Evil Dead II! What about Reservoir Dogs? Do ears count? Toes? Big Lebowski? Decapitations? Am I going to get these sort of replies?) 🙂