Rupert Pupkin Speaks: Underrated '99 - KC (of A Classic Movie Blog) ""

Friday, May 31, 2019

Underrated '99 - KC (of A Classic Movie Blog)

Kendahl Cruver (also known as KC) has written for Films of the Golden Age, Classic Images, ClassicFlix, Senses of Cinema, and her own site A Classic Movie Blog. You can find her at:

All About My Mother
Cecilia Roth is understated and moving as a mother who suddenly losses her son and must find her ex-husband, who has since transitioned, to tell her. This is one of my favorite Pedro Almodóvar films because he so thoroughly dives into one of his greatest themes: that we must give each other the freedom to create ourselves and openly love those creations.
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Though their comedic styles differ widely, I’ve always thought that Steve Martin and Eddie Murphy had a similar sense of the absurd. They’re a great team in this cheerfully goofy flick about a ridiculous, but ruthless film producer who scrambles to make a sci-fi movie with no budget and dubious casting. He, his cast and crew are all strangely loveable, despite being self-absorbed users, with the exception of Murphy in a dual role as a paranoid movie star and his sweetly nerdy brother.
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Ghost Dog
I remember being so absorbed in this Jim Jarmusch-directed drama about a philosophical hitman (Forrest Whitaker) that I didn’t notice that the back of the seat in front of my date had broken and he practically had another guy in his lap the whole film. It was such a mesmerizing experience: the perfect cool of the RZA score, a cast of quirky characters (including great gangster flick legends like Henry Silva), and the deeply sympathetic Whitaker as the quiet center of it all.
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Holy Smoke!
Harvey Keitel is a cult specialist who has been hired to deprogram the apparently brainwashed Kate Winslet. She is stronger than he expects though and she ends up essentially deprogramming him. I love how bold Winslet was in this role. At the time she seemed to be working with great ferocity to move beyond the bland stardom of her Titanic breakout. She definitely proved she had more to offer here.
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This is one of many films featuring gay characters that I watched with a friend who was struggling at the time to come out. I’ve always wondered if his movie choices were his subtle way of testing the waters with me; he must have known on some level that I would accept him for who he was, but it was so much more difficult to make that revelation twenty years ago. I remember a scene where a guy took off his shirt and the theater full of gay men gasped (I’m pretty sure I was the only woman in the audience). I haven’t seen the movie since that first viewing, it could be less compelling than I recall, but I remember how well it captured the desire of a guy (Christian Campbell, Nev’s brother) desperate for some time alone with the aforementioned shirt doffer. Tori Spelling is in it too. I remember being confused by the conflicting feelings of admiration and irritation her performance brought out in me.
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Office Space
This film is a cult hit now, but I remember seeing it in a nearly empty theater when it came out and wondering why no one wanted to see it. At the time I was living in the thick of bizarre office culture; it was an instant classic for me.

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