I am a big fan of movies. I enjoy a wide variety of motion pictures of many different types. I particularly like science fiction, horror, film noir, some comedy, some drama, and, especially, cult films. I must admit, I am not a big fan of most of the big Hollyweird blockbusters - most of them just leave me cold, as will be discussed shortly. I prefer B movies, which are much more entertaining than, say, Titanic or Pearl Harbor.
I should mention that I don't particularly like going to the movies. The experience of going to a theater to see a movie these days is not really an enjoyable experience. It involves paying way too much money to go and sit in a cramped theater in a ginormous multiplex that smells like stale popcorn, rancid butter, and old bubblegum for upwards of two hours watching a movie with a bunch of strangers who may or, more probably, may not behave like civilized human beings.
Long gone are the days when the experience of going to a movie was much more of a culturally uplifting experience. In the old days, movie theaters were not only cavernous (one would not feel claustrophobic in such a place), but were so ornate that the buildings themselves were works of art. A few years ago, I found myself in my home town of Boise, Idaho, where I was visiting. There is an old theater downtown called the Egyptian, that was built in 1927. I went to see the 1956 film In Cold Blood one evening while I was there, and thoroughly enjoyed the whole experience. It was almost as much fun walking around admiring the ancient Egyptian decor as it was watching the movie itself.
To add insult to injury, theaters have started to run advertisements before getting to the main feature. If I want to sit through a bunch of boring commercials, I can stay at home and sit in front of the Boob Tube and watch them for free. Not only that, but one also has to endure the sights and sounds of small children running around like a bunch of yahoos and making noise. Sometimes, the adolescents are even worse. I went to see Batman Forever at the theater when it came out back in 1995. If you will recall, this is the third film in the Batman series, the one that introduced Robin, played by Chris O'Donnell. It was just as well that I did not indulge in any of the outrageously overpriced snacks that were being pushed by the snack bar, because I would have totally lost it when he showed up in his ridiculous, tight-fitting Robin uniform. Not only was this a sight not fit for human eyes, but all of the teenage girls in the audience started ooh-ing and aw-ing at the sight. Some of them were so out of control that they sounded like they were having orgasms (maybe they actually were). Last time I heard, they were using this scene from the movie as a method of torture at Guantanamo Bay, forcing all of the Islamic terrorists being held there to watch it over and over again, until they capitulated.
These days, I wait until a film comes out on Blu-Ray, where I can watch it in the comfort of my home and, rather than pay $5.00 for a Coke, just grab a can from the fridge.
As with anything else, not all movies are created equal. Films run the entire gamut, from those incredibly great works of art that could only have been inspired by God, right down to the very dregs of festering, unwatchable excrement that, for some unknown reason, managed to find its way onto celluloid. The great Science Fiction writer Theodore Sturgeon once observed that "Ninety percent of anything is crap!" This certainly applies to motion pictures.
It is that remaining ten percent that more than justifies the existence of a form of entertainment that has existed for more than a century. Such greatness deserves to be honored, respected, and remembered for generations to come. In an attempt to do this, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts, Sciences, and Stale Popcorn was created as a method to honor the best that cinema has to offer. Beginning in 1929, various films, actors, actresses, and other functionaries of the film industry have been inducted in an annual ceremony, complete with pomp, pageantry, women wearing low-cut dresses, and a certain amount of bullshit.
Only a tiny percentage of movies that are made every year are deemed to be "Oscar-Worthy." These include big-budget features that star famous but overrated actors and actresses, "message" movies that espouse one left-wing cause or another (Hollyweird is nothing if not hopelessly liberal), and overblown, special-effects-laden bombs with simplistic plots that the average viewer can figure out five minutes into the movie. Movies that feature unique and interesting plots, bizarre space aliens, oddball twists, and lots of babes running around in skimpy outfits (i.e., the types of films favored in The Skinner Zone) need not apply.
The Skinner Zone is not about to sit idly by and watch as the American Academy of Motion Picture Arts, Sciences, and Stale Popcorn continues to plague the world with its cinematic excess without making an attempt to rectify things. In order to offset the pernicious influence of the powers-that-be in Hollyweird, I have decided to create my own Skinner Zone Academy of Motion Picture Arts, Sciences, and Movies That Are Actually Worth Watching. From time to time, I will present my own awards, which I am naming "Ed Wood Oscars" (after the greatest filmmaker of the twentieth century), that are worthy of recognition. I will also be featuring a section showcasing the worst movies that ever had the absolute unmitigated gall to show up on celluloid to inflict themselves upon humanity.
So grab yourself a nice cold glass of Coca-Cola on the rocks and prepare yourself for a trip through the glorious history of movies, featuring the films that The Skinner Zone deems worthy of being honored and remembered.