I love crafting song mixes, so when I saw this blog-a-thon hosted by Andy at Fandango Groovers Movie Blog, I knew I’d want to participate. Here is the concept behind the blogathon:
Mixtapes are most relevant when shared, to give someone a collection of songs, some they will know, others they don’t but will come to love is a true gift. The best mixes are of songs that are completely unconnected but fit together perfectly. So how does this translate to movies? The idea behind Mixtape Movies is to compile a list of movies that fit together. There are no hard and fast rules but here are my guidelines:
A selection of movies with no direct connection (star, director, source material) but that fit together or compliment each other.
Around six movies, five plus one wildcard (a movie that doesn’t quite fit but still belongs).
I love films that take on the matter of sleep & dreaming. Dreams themselves are already ripe for the cinematic treatment and the right director can bring that world to life in unique and remarkable ways. The films on my movie mixtape come from different genres, but they all tackle the subject in interesting ways. Most of them have to do with the dreamer’s yearnings from their waking life, a few deal with love and some involve more lucid dreaming than others but all (except my wild card choice) have treatments of sleep & dreaming that I love. I stole the list name from the song “Sh-Boom” originally by The Chords.
Mixtape Runtime: 681 minutes/11 hours & 21 minutes
The Science of Sleep – This film really inspired my decision to make a mixtape about sleep. I love the surreal way Michel Gondry directed and crafted this film. The sets used for the main characters Stéphane’s dreams are fantastic and artistic. This mirror’s his daily aspirations to work in a creative field as he falls in love with another artist, who happens to be his neighbor. His dreams tend to effect his life as he gets mixed up between his fantasies and reality.
Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind – Not only is this one of my favorite films in general, but one of my favorite movie romances. Joel & Clementine both undergo treatments in their sleep to erase the memory of each other after their relationship seems to fail. Only once Joel’s treatment starts he becomes aware in his subconscious of what happens and has to fight back to try to keep his memories of Clementine before they all slip away. This is another film directed by Gondry but featuring an amazing script by Charlie Kaufman. Despite Gondry directing this and Science each film handles dreams in a different way.
Sleepwalk With Me – This indie film written, directed, and starring Mike Birbiglia is about a man with serious anxiety that perpetuates his sleep issues, most significantly sleepwalking episodes. All of that intersects with Matt’s struggles to be a successful stand up comic, allowing him to discuss in hilarious and heartfelt ways the way he deals with his sleep disorder.
8 1/2 – Federico Fellini’s masterpiece about a director with a severe creative block plays out like a dream itself. It’s a sometimes surreal, sometimes puzzling, sometimes breathtaking but entirely magical film that mixes scenes set in reality with memories and dreams that vary all over the place. From the sequence in the beginning where the director floats away from a traffic jam, to the final wondrous procession at the end, this film is a remarkable look at the creative mind.
Inception – This Christopher Nolan film features a lot more action and huge set pieces compared to the first four on this mix, but its special treatment of dreams and exploration of how they are crafted earns its spot. Of course, at the core of this film is a love story that not only depends on dreaming, but also had its downfall because of it. The matter of blurring the lines between reality and dreaming is one of the fascinating reasons people love it so much.
Before Sunrise – I chose this as my wild card because this film is about staying awake. When Céline and Jesse meet on a train and spontaneously decide to spend the day and night walking around Vienna until Jesse must catch a flight the next morning, their chemistry is through the charts. It’s obviously one of those once in a lifetime chance meetings and neither want it to end. Instead they stay up all night and fight sleep in order to make every minute together count, leaving rest until after they part. It’s one of those remarkable occurrences that seem too fantastic to not be a dream, but the two characters find themselves in a real life fantasy.
Hope you liked my mixtape! What would you add?
Check out the other participant’s movie mixtapes here.