Even allowing for my recent splurge of mini-reviews, there are still 32 titles remaining before I can file Operation 101010 under “completed”. If anybody’s crazy enough to propose an Operation 111111 for next year (applying the same rules but bumping everything up to 11, you’d have to commit to watching and reviewing 121 movies during the year!), I doubt I’ll be as quick to throw my lot in as I was this time around. Operation 101010 has pointed me in the direction of some films I might have missed out on otherwise (the Lukas Moodyssons and Alex de la Iglesia’s ‘800 Bullets’ in particular were real finds), but it has seemed at times like a millstone around my neck.
One casualty of Operation 101010 has been a paucity of retrospectives and/or themed months on The Agitation of the Mind. There’s only been the Jeunet retrospective, July’s second annual Shots on the Blog and ‘Terminator’ week as opposed to last year’s Tarkovsky retrospective, the inaugural Shots on the Blog, the Dirk Bogarde fest, the Diane Lane fest, a bunch of spooky entries around Halloween and the month-long Sam Peckinpah tribute that saw out 2009.
True, I’ve got another Halloween special planned and I’m hoping to squeeze in the fourth annual Dirkfest (although with many of his most interesting late period movies still MIA on DVD, I might have to take a very different approach to it), but I can safely predict that finishing off Operation 101010 will occupy most of the rest of the year.
But I’m already looking ahead to next year. Inspired by Tim at Antagony & Ecstasy’s Summer of Blood (a mid-year celebration of all things gruesome and gory that has already established itself as something of a tradition), Kevin at Hugo Stiglitz Makes Movies’s similarly theme Summer of Slash and Bryce at Things That Don’t Suck’s equally alliterative Summer of Samurai, I’ve already started giving some thought to a possible season for summer 2011 on Agitation.
With an eye firmly on alliterative possibilities, I’ve come up with five options. And this, ladies and gentlemen, is where I need YOU. I’m making next year’s centrepiece on the blog completely interactive. A poll has gone up on the sidebar. Voting will run for the rest of the year. My choice of viewing is entirely in your hands. The options are:
Summer of Song. The remit: anything with a musical connotation. Classic Hollywood musicals, biopics of composers or musicians, documentaries about same. Pro’s: the musical is a genre I’ve never really immersed myself in; I stand to increase my knowledge of film and make discoveries. Cons: ‘The Sound of fuckin’ Music’, one of the few films where I’ve found myself rooting for the Nazis (“they’re in the cellar – fuckin’ lob a grenade!”)
Summer of Sin. The remit: anything seedy, sexy, sultry or seductive; anything torrid, tempting, tantilizing or titillating; anything nasty, naughty, nubile or nefarious; anything lustful, lewd, licentious or lascivious; anything rude, rampant, rapacious or recalcitrant … (to quote Jim Carrey in ‘The Mask’, “somebody stop me”. No, really. Please. Stop me.) Pro’s: the opportunity to write about provocative or erotic but still artistically valid films such as ‘Sex and Lucia’ and ‘Lust Caution’ without proving oneself the literary equivalent of a sniggering schoolboy. Cons: failing miserably and proving oneself the literary equivalent of a sniggering schoolboy.
Summer of Sarcasm. The remit: satire of the most scathing ilk; anything that royally and unrepentantly rips the piss. Pro’s: some freakin’ funny movies. Cons: said movies warping my fragile little mind to the point where I take an irreverent and facetious attitude into work and get myself fired (fuck it, I’m willing to take the risk).
Summer of Sci-Fi. The remit: what it says on the tin. Pro’s: a slew of great movies, from ‘Metropolis’ to ‘Moon’. Cons: can’t think of any; even a by-the-numbers opus like ‘Logan’s Run’ has Jenny Agutter in a microskirt. And don’t get me started on Anne Francis in ‘Forbidden Planet’!
Summer of Satan. The remit: anything dark, devilish and diabolical. Anything with Satan in the title or ol’ Scratch as a character, icon or narrative influence. Pro’s: some of the key horror movies in film history. Cons: exploitative trash like ‘Satan’s Baby Doll’ and ‘Nude for Satan’. (I’m only kidding about those kind of movies being cons.)
Right then. Get voting. Go ahead: make my summer.