The Truman Show: Jim Carrey at his finest. The theatrical poster was made up of lots of little pictures that made one big portrait of Carrey. Sort of like those posters at the mall.
(WARNING – Who the f*ck did I think I was when I wrote this paragraph?) The major themes are better left to Kierkegaard and religious scholars, but even the most progressive thinkers in 1998 couldn’t have predicted the prolific comparisons between the movie and the rise of reality television. Unfortunately, the similarities end at a critical juncture. Truman realized he’s unwittingly a product of manipulation and incarceration and escapes. Meanwhile, on reality TV, it’s the viewers that have unwittingly become the product of manipulation and incarceration. No escape yet.
There’s Something About Mary: You know when something is built up it can’t possibly live up to the hype? That’s what happened to me and the “franks and beans” scene. I’m surprised that it’s not shown on cable more often. Maybe it’s a little dated now that people can stalk exes via social media.
The Big Hit: Marky Mark showing off his comedic chops after startling everyone at the end of Boogie Nights. Plot points elude me.
Rounders: Another one we saw at The Uptown. A dark movie about poker with a tiny little Gretchen Mol who made a bunch of films that year and I thought would end up more famous.
Rushmore: Didn’t actually see it then, but it was released in 1998, so it falls within my made-up parameters for this list. I did, however, see Bottle Rocket which is also directed by Wes Anderson. One of Peter’s roommates rented it and made him and me watch it. They loved it. I was ambivalent. Anderson’s films just kept getting better and better. Bill Murray owes Anderson a fruit basket.
The Spanish Prisoner: Directed and written by David ‘Rhymes with Damnit’ Mamet. A Peter recommendation since he “loved” Mamet. What twenty-year-old loves Mamet? After we finished the movie it’s confusing plot evaporated like the punchline of an elaborate joke; you wish you could remember it.