VERSUS THE SCARECROW EPISODE TEN: Double Digits, Double Duty. I decided to challenge myself and really open the doors of my film knowledge and take on “The Scarecrow Video Movie Guide”. It’s 808 pages of movies and movie reviews from some of the most knowledgeable movie people you don’t know. It’s a book put together by a staff that praises, and destroys, some of our favorites and not so favorites. You can read the rest of my series here.
Just a quick refresher: each episode, I’m going to tackle three films from three different categories. Two films will be films I’ve never seen before and one will be one I’ve seen before or own. For the new films, well, new to me, I’m going to review them like a typical FTS review using the TOAST Rating system. But, for the films I’ve seen, I’m going give a quick paragraph or two about why I like or don’t like the film. We’ll try to include the poster and trailer for each film. “….and here. We. Go!”
Can you believe it? Ten episodes already? Where does the time go? Well I can tell you that the time goes towards watching old movies, and some new, reviewing them or happily reflecting back on them… and making snacks to eat while watching and reviewing… and drinking Coke Zero… the point I’m trying to make is thanks for reading!! As a reward, this series will now be a bi-weekly segment! This means more episodes, more movies, and more importantly, more snacks!! As a side note, I am playing with a new writing format and it may or may not change through the coming episodes. Enjoy!!
Now onto this week’s episode: I’ll be taking a look at Christopher Guest’s mockumentary Waiting for Guffman (1996), Woody Allen’s futuristic sci-fi comedy Sleeper (1973), and I reflect back on a film that will soon become the first in a trilogy, Kevin Smith’s Clerks (1994)
Sleeper (1973) Directed by Woody Allen. Starring: Woody Allen, Diane Keaton, and John Beck. IMDB says: ”A nerdish store owner is revived out of cryostasis into a future world to fight an oppressive government.”
Sleeper is a jazz filled vision of the future according to Woody Allen. Through slapstick, and hilarious satire, Woody Allen traipses through the world as an “alien” who has escaped from a test lab after being thawed out from 200 years of cryogenic stasis. He comes across a resistance group looking to use him and his knowledge to overthrow the all seeing all knowing government.
The plot is thin and feels like it’s only used to tie the jokes together. Allen uses his slapstick abilities to convey his misunderstanding of the new technologies (Robot servants and Orgasm Machines) as well as his satiric wit when discussing pictures of old government leaders and archaic vehicles. The film is outright goofy and the soundtrack, provided by The New Orleans Preservation Hall Jazz Band, make it all the goofier and campier.
Woody Allen gives a great performance and Diane Keaton taps into a character that’s even odder than her role as Annie in Annie Hall. If you’re in the mood for something for something goofy, Sleeper is worth the watch.
Check back tomorrow for my reflection on Clerks and if you’re interested in more, you can find the rest of the Versus The Scarecrow series here.