I won an award!

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 If you’re anything like me your blogger desktop has recently been inundated with the above picture being handed out from one worthy blog to another, and thanks to the lovely Siobhan (pronounced Shi-vawn, she’ll have you know) over at Film Flammers, this honour has now befallen me. Firstly, thanks Siobhan. You can find her blog over here, and I recommend that you too.
Here are the rules:

1. Each person must post 11 things about themselves.
2. Answer the 11 questions the person giving the award has set for you.
3. Create 11 questions for the people you will be giving the award to.
4. Choose 11 people to award and send them a link to your post.
5. Go to their page and tell them.
6. NO TAG BACKS

Every Thing You Always Wanted to Know About Jay* But Were Afraid To Ask

1. My childhood was relatively film-free. There was no sneaking down to watch a forbidden horror whilst my parents were asleep, or being taken to a cinema when I was severely underage. I feel this does not put me in good stead for being a film blogger.
2. I’ve never seen a film more than once at the cinema. There have been many films that have left me astounded and dumbfound, yet never to the extent that I cannot wait for it to come out on DVD.
3. Until the age of about 15, I thought that John Wayne was a character played by Clint Eastwood.
4. I got into films because of my Dad. He used to have a long working day, with a long commute, so I wouldn’t see him much. In fact, I’d get up ridiculously early to eat breakfast with him every day, else I wouldn’t see him until the weekend, and even then he’d be busy working in his office. My Dad likes films (granted, I’ve overtaken him now) and our early morning breakfast chats would generally move onto that topic. We still play the game of “what’s he been in” when a familiar face crops up on screen, though I win more often now.
5. If I could have had any job in cinema history, it would have been character design on Wall-E. I love doodling, especially robots, and a job at Pixar is that dream I’ll always have, but will never chase. Second choice would be visual effects on Terminator 2 or The Thing, because the effects are groundbreaking yet not CGI, and I’d have gotten to meet Stan Winston.
6. If there’s anything I love as much as films, its baking and chocolate making. I regularly make chocolates and sweets for my family and friends every Christmas/birthday, and hope to one day make it into a business. A good weekend does not occur unless it involves experimenting with a new ingredient, ruining a saucepan by letting something sugary boil for too long, or finishing off a bowl of frosting.
7. One of my favourite aspects of watching films is character actors. They tend to be so much better than the leads, but due to a slight facial asymmetry, receding hairline or lack of decent roles they end up being marginalised, but tend to put in exemplary performances none the less. My favourites include Steve Buscemi, John Goodman, M. Emmet Walsh, John Turtorro – basically anyone who’s ever worked with the Coen brothers.
8. I will watch any film that features robots or dinosaurs. That said, I’ve yet to see Robots or The Tree of Life yet.
9. I refuse to drive. I have a license (my parents force that on me) but I’m a firm believer that you can get anywhere you need to by cycling, public transport or a mixture of the two. I cycle to work every day, regardless of how sweaty and stinky I am when I arrive. (I’m still consistently 3 stone overweight, probably because of fact 6)
10. I like to make things out of paper, stemmed from a love of origami in my youth. Last year I made my girlfriend an advent calendar, and will occasionally make papercut greetings cards or posters. I’ve yet to do a film-based one, but I have some ideas.
11. I regularly have mini-breakdowns where I realise I don’t have time to work a full time job, have hobbies, write this blog and be in a serious relationship. I’ve recently discovered that watching a Pixar film helps get me out of this funk, and being given this award should hopefully stem these thoughts for at least a fortnight.

Siobhan’s questions, my answers
1. At a movie theatre, what snacks do you buy? Or do you sneak them in? If money were no object, what would be your movie theatre snack of choice?

Fortunately for me, you don’t have to sneak food into my local cinema, they let you take in whatever you want, and there’s an olde timey sweete shoppe next door which allows me to do this regularly. My personal choice? Milk chocolate raisins. Sometimes I’ll go toffee popcorn or Ben & Jerry’s Cookie Dough, if I’m feeling extravagant.

2. What’s the first movie that really scared you?

The first horror movie I can remember seeing is The Shining (aged maybe 15-ish) but I don’t really remember it scaring that much. To be honest the only films that tend to leave much a mark on me are the gorey ones like Saw (The bit in Saw 2 with the key behind the guy’s eye gets me every time) or Hostel (again, the girl’s eye at the end). But I try not to watch too many torture-porn film now I’ve discovered this. Paranormal Activity scared the bejesus out of me though, as I watched it on a laptop from my bed, alone in a dark house at night. I do not recommend this. I prefer watching ‘horror’ films that are really comedies with inventive, hilarious death scenes, hence my fandom for the Final Destination series.

3. The television show/book/graphic novel/other thing I would really love to see adapted to film is _______________________.

For personal reasons I have to say the as-yet-unpublished Fall by Beth Coombs, as she’s a friend of mine and the book is pretty damn good. Her blog is here. In terms of more famous works, I’d have said World War Z if it wasn’t already being made, so I’ll go with either Good Omens by Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman, or The Gun Seller by Hugh Laurie. As you can probably tell, I’m not too well versed in classic literature, but I’m working on this. I’d love to see someone try and make a film of 1001 Movies You Must See Before You Die.

4. If you like horror movies, why do you like them? If not, why not?
Christ, aren’t you listening? I told you this in 2. My favourite horror film is probably Alien, though I think that’s technically more science fiction. More traditionally, I’ll go with Scream, for the comedy and meta-ness. That being said, there are an awful lot of gaps in my horror history, with such classics as The Texas Chain Saw Massacre, Halloween and The Exorcist only ever being half-watched once. Also, I’ve never seen any of the Friday the 13th films, despite sharing the same first name as the antagonist.

5. If you could be any movie character, who would you be, and why?
Despite disliking the film intensely, I’d probably go for someone like Poppy from Happy-Go-Lucky, as she’s so bloody positive all the time, whereas I’m decidedly pessimistic. Or maybe Frank Drebin from The Naked Gun series, as even though he’s such a buffoon, everything just seems to work out for him. In real life, I’m more like Rob from High Fidelity, but with films. My life literally runs on lists.

6. Why did you start blogging? What keeps you going?

My girlfriend suggested I start a blog after she started one for all her crafting and baking. I then received the 1001 Movies book for Christmas, and everything seemed to fit together nicely. I don’t have a lot of friends who like films nearly as much as me, or indeed at all, and the ones that do like films I don’t see nearly as often as I’d like, so this is a good way for me to get my film discussion fix too. The main thing that keeps me going is a determination not to give up. I’m one of those people who never seems to finish anything, and I’m adamant not to add this to that list.

7. What movie would you most like to see again for the first time with no prior knowledge?
Great question. I’d probably go for something great, but that my first viewing of wasn’t great, for example Alien, which I had on as a background film whilst doing some university work, so missed out on most of its awesomeness.

8. What is your favourite sport to play? To watch?

I’ve never been much of a sportsman. I used to play cricket and football (the proper version where you use your feet) when I was much younger, but that’s about it. Nowadays it’d be more of the pub-sports like snooker or bowling. Yes, bowling. Love me some bowling. I’ve never understood watching sports unless you know someone participating in or have a bet on the outcome, so I don’t really watch any sports I’m afraid.

9. What is the best or most useful class in school you have ever taken?

It wasn’t in school, but I took an evening class for a year called Film Analysis, where a group of 6-12 of us would get together every Thursday and watch a film selected by the ‘teacher’ Peter Hogen (I think he was an extra in a few films and wrangled some horses on others). It introduced me to some classics (Rear Window) and some insanity (Bunuel’s The Exterminating Angel) and was full of fellow film fans from various backgrounds. Unfortunately I no longer live near where the class was taught, and it doesn’t run any more.

10. Describe your favourite article of clothing.

My navy blue Cheers t-shirt from Boston. It’s a couple of sizes too big, but it’s so damn soft and comfortable, and I’m told the colour suits me.

11. If you won the lottery tomorrow, what are the first five things you would buy with your newfound riches?
I’m in a very changeable time of life at the moment, and most of what I own is a hand-me-down from my parents, so it’d be really sensible boring things. Namely, a new flatscreen TV with surround sound (my current set is 36″ and about 2′ deep), sofas that aren’t too big for the lounge they’re in,  a new car for my girlfriend, a new bike for me, and a bigger flat/house (a one-bedroom, three-room apartment isn’t really big enough for 2 people). God, I sound so predictable and sensible. The most exciting thing I can think of is a hand-drawn picture that’s up at a key-cutters near my house, that’s replaced the classic Empire State Building workers on a girder shot with classic era movie stars like Bogart, Monroe and King Kong. I love that picture.
Now I’m not Spinal Tap, so I don’t go up to 11 with my nominees for the award, mainly because I don’t follow that many blogs that haven’t yet been nominated (because Steve at 1001plus got there first), so here are my selections, congrats guys:
My questions for everyone else:
1. At a movie theatre, what snacks do you buy? Or do you sneak them in? If money were no object, what would be your movie theatre snack of choice?
2. What’s the first movie that really scared you?
3. The television show/book/graphic novel/other thing I would really love to see adapted to film is _______________________.
4. If you like horror movies, why do you like them? If not, why not?

5. If you could be any movie character, who would you be, and why?
6. Which movie character are you most like?
7. What is it about films that interests you? What got you started?

8. Why did you start blogging? What keeps you going?
9. What movie would you most like to see again for the first time with no prior knowledge?
10. If you could have worked on any film in history, which would it be, and in what role?
11. What song will play over the closing credits of your life?
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15 thoughts on “I won an award!

  1. Oooh… I forgot about Hugh Laurie's The Gun Seller. That WOULD make a good movie. Good call.I'm not really a big baker, but I make an absolutely awesome chocolate fudge. It's the only candy-making I go in for myself, and it's a family recipe. The secret is using way more butter than one would normally add to fudge.

  2. When I read the Gun Seller, I could only imagine Laurie in the role, but maybe about 15 years ago Hugh Laurie, I think he's a little old for it now. Could still work though.I love making fudge. Recently been experimenting with more alcoholic ones, which my parents have gratefully received and devoured for their birthdays. No family recipes in my clan though 😦

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