The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari (1920)

Welcome to October, ye aulde scavengers of doorstep candies and defacers of guileless pumpkins.  This is a month unto itself in the world of film, a sort of embodied actor dictating the atmosphere and mood of its cinematic output with all the gusto of a mad composer.  Where December takes us to the stereo systems, bidding us hear the crooners and choirs in their mystic wonderlands of white, October ushers us manipulatively to dark rooms with dull lights emanating from silver screens.  It is a haunting force, not unlike the specters that inhabit it, simultaneously possessing us and scaring us away.  October is no mere month, it is a phenomenon, beckoning us to consume fear like we would fun-size chocolates and candy corns.  Trick-or-treating, costumes, haunted houses, plumes of dry ice flowing from plastic punch-bowls… none of these exorcise that possessive ghost of October quite like a scary movie.  Indeed, the genre of horror film lies at the very heart of Halloween celebration. Continue reading

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Greatest Acting Performances (Male and Female)

I have been on an acting binge lately and have determined to publicize a list of the greatest acting performances of all time; this is conjunction with my current two-part series on acting that can be found in my pages, as well as my earlier list of my favorite actors.  I’m sure a list of my favorite actresses will come next.  With this list, I see little to no necessity to divide based on gender or—worse yet—to divide into four, first by gender then again by the ever-present lead-role/supporting-role dynamic.  So, I have made a list wherein all acting performances that I personally have witnessed (irregardless of gender or prevalence in the film) are given equal footing and wherein only the best are counted.  The selection of number one, I know, is bold.  But I dare anyone to see this person in this movie and tell me that I’m wrong.  Of course, I think I’m right.  It’s my opinion. Continue reading