The Blues Brothers
Pooh, by way of LGM asks:
You have to explain America to someone from not here, but you can only use ten movies to do it. Which ten do you choose?
The idea is not to give them a history lesson, so you don't have to start with The New World and end with Jarhead.
What you're trying to do is give them a sense of who we are---your take on our dreams, our attitudes, our idioms, what we think we are, what we are afraid we are, what we really might be.
Crap. Don't you hate it when, for years, you've had the same idea as someone else, but they put it out first? I've emailed and discussed versions of this for years, but did I write it up when I started this stupid blog? Noooo.
If I were to explain America in ten movies I don't care what numbers two through ten are. The only movie that matters is number one: The Blues Brothers.
One of the all-time great American movies and vastly underappreciated. It's the best overview of American culture: car crashes, blues, car crashes, country AND Western, car crashes, religion, car crashes, road trips, 4 fried chickens and a coke, car crashes, hammond organs, rooting for the underdog, car crashes, electric guitars, car crashes, disregard for authority, car crashes, eternal optimism in the face of overwhelming odds, car crashes, hating nazis, car crashes, you know - for the kids, and car crashes.
You go have your big long film festival on the American Id; we'll be over here in the land of a 1000 dances having a beer and some fried food.