Top 10 Movies

I love TV. In fact I have lately been really disinterested in watching movies at home. Seth and I will get new Netflix DVDs and they will sit for weeks before we watch them. There is just something so nice about TV shows and watching an episode of Mad Men, or Dexter before bed. Movies can be a big time commitment and honestly - all the good ones we tend to see in the theaters. But tonight I was once again convinced of the amazing power of a really great movie. I watched "The Graduate" and honestly I can't stop thinking about it. On my drive home from Britney and Sean's I tried calling a couple people so that I could just talk to them about the movie. It was so so good. I heard it was good but I had no idea. I decided that the movie was definitely in my top 10 - I just didn't know where. So my entire 20 minute drive home I contemplated my top movies. Finally I was excited to blog. Finally I felt inspired. I love movies so here is my top 10 list. Starting at the bottom.

10.

I'm not entirely sure if I can put into words why I loved this movie so much. It was a very unexpected love. What I think I loved about this movie was how perfectly simple the plot was. I love movies that don't feel overly saturated with dialogue. I loved the cast - stellar. Personally I think George Clooney will go down as one of the greats. Vera is one of my favorite actresses and Anna Kendrick - amazing. "Sometimes it feels like, no matter how much success I have, it's not gonna matter until I find the right guy. I could have made it work, he really fit the bill, you know. White collar, 6'1, college grad, loves dogs, likes funny movies, brown hair, kind eyes, works in finance but is outdoorsy. I always imagined he'd have a single syllable name like Matt or John or Dave. In a perfect world, he drives a 4 runner and the only thing he loves more than me is his golden lab. And a nice smile. What about you?" I loved that it had a "lesson" that it was trying to teach and threw a total spin at you at the end. I just loved it. I was riveted by this movie. That's the best way to describe it. Riveted. Definitely worth the top 10.

9.

This is a movie that I always knew I needed to see. I heard it was great. I just never really made it a priority to watch - until tonight. And I am so glad I did. It is a film made in 1967 so the fashion, the setting, the music - all perfect. I feel like it was so different from the other movies I have seen from the 60s. It was almost too artsy but I loved it. I loved the camera angels. I loved the subtle humor. I LOVED Dustin Hoffman. I loved the romance and the pacing. I loved that Simon and Garfunkel did the soundtrack. Over all the movie was amazing. Also according to Sean this movie created the "R" rating - which totally makes me laugh because it is so not "R" material. I am sure that for the 60s it was VERY risky. Oh man, so good. Have you seen it? NO - get off your butt and rent it. Trust me. In fact I am going to stop for a minute, get on Amazon and buy it. Right now. It's just that good. "Do you find me undesirable?" "Oh no, Mrs. Robinson. I think, I think you're the most attractive of all my parents' friends."

8.

This is the ultimate and maybe first real romantic comedy. You all have seen it. You know how good it is. I love that the main character is a really quite unattractive Billy Crystal. I love Meg Ryan's horrible hair and style. The dialogue in this movie is pure genius. The plot is pure genius and of course it ends perfectly. I love the whole "Can men and women just be friends" subplot. What's important is that it started a whole new genre. Really was there a great romantic comedy before this? I think not. Think of the orgasm diner scene, or the "too much pepper in my paprikash" scene. Think of the pictionary "baby fish mouth!" scene. Really just try not to smile and fall a little more in love when watching this movie.

7.

I had to throw one of the Lord of the Rings movies in there. I chose Return of the King because it includes all of the great characters that I love - including Eowyn who is one of the greatest female characters. I love that the final film includes the final battle of good vs. evil. This movie, the splendor and the magnitude of it really is amazing and I am SO GLAD it won best picture that year. I never thought in a million years that I would be a "fantasy novel" nerd. But here I am obsessed with Lord of the Rings. These movies were epic and I am so glad that I played a part in the release of all of them. I loved the midnight showings. I was so sad when it all ended. This is a movie I have watched so many times I could recite the entire thing. Well done Peter Jackson. I hope me kids like it as much as I do.

6.

This is a movie that Sean had to force me to watch. I remember seeing the previews and rolling my eyes. Ugh a movie about music in the 70s and the roadies that follow them around? Boring. Oh how wrong I was. This movie is genius and the perfect "coming of age" film. It was a perfect comedy with a bit of drama to make it good. You are graced with perfect scenes such as the "Tiny Dancer" scene on the bus. Or the scene where Kate Hudson glides around the floor on pieces of confetti while "The Wind" by Cat Stevens plays. This movie has so much heart and a killer cast. Trust me - doesn't look interesting? Watch it anyway. It will surprise you. It surprised me. "This song explains why I am leaving home to become a stewardess."

5.

It would be wrong of me to not include Harry Potter in this list. Do I think Harry Potter movies are "out of this world" amazing? No. Do I think they deserve a best picture award? No. However I love these movies. I was thinking this week that the world of Harry Potter has been a strong part of my life for 12 years now. 12. That is so crazy. I love the books far more than the movies but I do love the movies. I put the 6th movie on the list because I haven't seen the last one yet and I am sure it'll be the one that should be on the list. I can't wait to see the final show but I know I'll sit in the theater and cry when it ends. Not because of the movie but because Harry Potter will officially be over. Sad. No more book release parties. No more midnight movies. It'll be over. Yet I love them so much that they deserve a place in the top 5. I have watched the characters grow and the movies improve over the years. Again I hope beyond hope that my kids grow up and become obsessed with Harry Potter. I'll be the mom that will read each book with the kids before I let them watch the movie. How fun will that be? Here's hoping they love them as much as Seth & I do.

4.

Shakespeare in Love is on my list for so many reasons. First, it's a perfect period piece. Second, it's one of the most romantic shows I have ever seen. Third, it takes creative liberties with one of history's most famous men and makes a wonderful story. Fourth, the actors are perfect. Fifth, it makes me cry like a baby. Seriously how good is this movie? I don't need to say more other than Judi Dench won best supporting actress the year she was in this. Turns out she was only in the film for like 6 minutes or something? However she plays Queen Elizabeth so perfectly that she freaking deserves it. That's how you know you are an amazing actress. Judi Dench and her 6 minute portrayal of Elizabeth. This movie is beautiful. "How is it to end?" "As stories must when love's denied: with tears and a journey."

3.

I had to throw Johnny in here somewhere. What a fun and quirky movie. Again it has the most beautiful lesson - actually maybe one of the greatest lessons in a movie. It doesn't matter who you are, what you believe, what church you attend or how you worship. Being a good friend and a good person far surpasses all of that. This quote says it all "I'm not sure what the theme of my homily today ought to be. Do I want to speak of the miracle of Our Lord's divine transformation? Not really, no. I don't want to talk about His divinity. I'd rather talk about His humanity. I mean, you know, how He lived His life, here on Earth. His *kindness*, His *tolerance*... Listen, here's what I think. I think that we can't go around... measuring our goodness by what we don't do. By what we deny ourselves, what we resist, and who we exclude. I think... we've got to measure goodness by what we *embrace*, what we create... and who we include." Oh and there's a bit of romance and possibly Johnny Depp in his hottest role. Hottest on-screen kiss in my opinion - and he plays the guitar. Hot all around. However it's not his hotness that makes this movie. The plot, the music, the characters make this movie. It's genius and happily in my top 3.

2.

I had a hard time deciding which movie would take the top position. After much personal debate I decided that "The Wizard of Oz" is good to be in the #2. Anyone that knows me well knows that I was obsessed (with a capital O) with this movie growing up. I watched it every day for years. I acted out the part. I had a green and yellow Fisher Price plastic basket that I put my favorite stuffed animal Toto in. Toto by the way was a stuffed dog with pink overalls and a sailer hat that said "San Francisco" on it. Hilarious. I knew and still know to this day every line of this movie. I was Dorothy for Halloween for more years that I can remember. This movie really is iconic. I loved that the recording I had of it was from TV and that I can even recite the commercials that played during it, "Raise your hand, raise your hand - if your SURE!" or "It's your favorite Campbells tomato - you eat all that soup and maybe you'll be ok." Oh it even had the infamous Michael Jackson Pepsi commercial. Dang I hope mom still has that tape. I love the scene where Dorothy slaps the Lion and he cries. My grandpa used to laugh so hard he cried in that scene. He used to call me every time it was on TV. I love that I have that special memory with him. This movie was my childhood. In a nutshell. I love it so much.

1.

There is so much that I adore about Funny Girl. It's the perfect Barbra Streisand movie. It's the perfect musical as well and I'd be ashamed if I didn't have one musical on my list. From the opening scene where she's in her dorky red, white and blue outfit to the final heart breaking scene where she sings "My Man" I am riveted. To this day if I walk onto a stage in an empty theater I have to resist the urge to start singing "I'm the greatest star". Barbara is comic gold in this movie - and so young. What a talent and what a story. "I've got 36 expressions - sweet as pie or tough as leather!" I love the plot of the poor ugly girl with talent - making it big and falling in love with the handsome Omar Sharif. The movie doesn't end happily but the tragedy of it makes it even better. The songs in this are all so good. My dad claims that the "People" scene was one of the greatest film scenes of all time - and that the movie audience broke into applause when she finished singing. How cute is that? In typical old movie fashion - it is long. Long but wonderful and officially my favorite movie of all time.

Facebook as a Colt

Today I was once again smiling/cringing while reading the Facebook status updates of my little sister. It's cute and part of me can relate to what she is feeling. Or should I say part of me used to relate to what she is feeling. Once again I was struck with an overwhelming gratitude that Facebook didn't exist when I was a teenager. On my drive home I started thinking about what I would have been like in the world of Facebook during high school and decided I would post some of the status updates that I would have likely posted. So - I present to you - Becky Avery circa 1996-1999.


Becky is super excited for play practice on Saturday!


Becky is BEST DAY EVAHHHH! Early morning play practice, Blake breaking the glass in the auditorium, back rubs by Berg, McDonald nuggets and snowball fight!


Becky is sad. Why does he like her more than me!?!? I am so heart broken!!


Becky is "I AM THE BEAST!"


Becky is super excited for the football game tonight. CHIGA CHIGA!!!!


Becky is (insert any cheesy seminary quote once copied on a sticky inside my scriptures)


Becky is thinking that she can be a Fagan's boy as good as the actual boys in "Oliver"!


Becky is A+ at state! Cottonwood Mads are the best!!!!


Becky is pissed. It says alto solo not EFFING SOPRANO SOLO!


Becky is "Sensitivity Sensitivity I'm just loaded with that...."


Becky is ready for her 10am Subway run and Boyd better not steal it or I will be one angry girl!


Becky is stressed about Chemistry - who is going to help me with my homework (aka cheat) during lunch?!!?


Becky is "You've got the most STUMBLING blue eyes!?!" That doesn't even make any sense!


Becky is wondering who will get the duck on the California trip.


Becky is please please please please please let him ask me to prom!


Becky is going to bully Timms during Crucible rehearsal today - muuuwwahhhahahaha!


Becky can't be sexual with Jon McBride - he's like my brother!


Becky is SPAZ UNO IS THE BEST THING EVER! HA HA HA!


Becky is four queens forever!


Ah yes, lets be glad. Lets be glad this didn't exist.




88 Camaro

Take a step back with me will you? Take a step back 15 years. I was 15 years old, with my learner's permit and hanging out with my best friend Tiffany. (note: we used to do a wicked raptor impersonation)


It's time to take Tiffany home and my mom says, "Why don't you just take the Camaro and take her home?"

YESSSSSSSS!

Tiffany and I went alone to the car - a little nervous that I could not indeed drive a stick shift and neither could she. Mom was kind enough to tell me the basics about a clutch and off we went. It was a rough 2 block drive to Tiffany's. I'm not sure how many times I stalled the car but we made it.

And thus began my 6 years relationship with the epic 1988 Camaro.


Where do I start to describe this car? It was famous. Everyone at Cottonwood High School knew this car and they knew Becky Avery drove it. As a result I had guys begging me nearly daily to let them drive it (I'm looking at you Caleb Petersen & Charlie Halford). Somehow girls didn't really care to drive it.

This was also the car that got me checked out constantly - usually by white trash 40-50 year old men with mustaches. Oh ya they loved this car.

Lately I have been running by Olympus High School. You would think I was running next to a rich office building based on the cars in their parking lot. I'm talking new Outbacks, Audi's, Volkswagons, etc. At Cottonwood there were some nice cars, sure. However most cars were junkers. My car wasn't a junker but it was awesome. I loved that it had so much character - ghetto character- but character nonetheless. I loved the car parked each day between Caroline Jolley's silver Dodge Aries (red interior) and Jenny Bishop's station wagon. Our cars had style.


I have a lot of memories of the Camaro. Memories of stalking Jason Rhead. Funny that I ever thought I could casually stalk someone in that beast. It stuck out like a sore thumb.

Memories of belting broadway musicals with my drama friends on our way to lunch during play practice.

Memories of speeding through a Cottonwood Heights neighborhood, only to be side-swiped by Justin Lafeen (while Gurney screamed in the back). That was my first accident. I think Lafeen is still traumatized.

Memories of me hitting and killing a dog on Highland Drive. The poor dog ran right in front of me, late one night. I didn't even have time to break. I was devastated. What seems more memorable however is the crap everyone gave me as a result. Nate Stevens and crew mocked my car for having a beard for years because of this. That Christmas, Nate was my boyfriend, and he informed me he almost bought me a shaving kit for Christmas. Glad he didn't or that relationship would have ended quickly.

One particular memory still makes me laugh. It was my junior year of high school and all the drama girls were having a "girls night". We used to refer to them as OFM nights (operation face mask). We didn't want the boys to know where we were but we were all staying at I think Melissa Hernandez's grandmas condo? I left my car parked at Kim Ball's house. That night we snuck over to Mark Gurney's house and marshmallowed Blake Emett's car. Basically licked marshmallows and stuck them to the windows. Harmless right?

Wrong.

The next morning I got a call from my mom while at school rehearsing for "Oliver". The cops called them because while we were sleeping the boys trashed my car over at Kim's house. And when I say trashed, I mean trashed.


Wow. Pickled pigs feet, ketchup, mustard, you name it. Girls do these things to flirt - boys do these things to be mean. Clearly.

This wasn't the only time the infamous Camaro was trashed. There was also the night that I was working until 1:00am at Italian Village (a workplace that clearly merits its own blog post)

It was winter. When I was about to leave I walked outside to see that my car had be floured. Meaning water was poured on my car, and then flour was thrown on it. Normally this is bad but the fact that by the time I came out the flour was FROZEN onto my car, ya that was bad. I had to walk in and out of Italian Village at 1:00am with buckets and buckets of steaming water to clean it up. I think Casey Sullivan and Hudd were behind this one?

Something about the Camaro just begged to be tortured.

I drove this car until I was 21. I remember buying my Jetta and driving on the freeway and before I realized it I was going 90mph. I couldn't go over 55 mph without the Camaro shaking threateningly.

I miss the Camaro. I miss the giant speakers that only worked 1/2 the time. I miss the booming horn. I miss the rumble of it. I miss feeling like a total bad ass. Lets be honest, my Scion, not nearly as cool.

I would like to end this blog by referring to one of my favorite year book entries.

"Becky, nice car, nice legs. Too bad I've never been in either of them."

Thank you Caleb Petersen, thank you. The good mormon girl I used to be was horrified by that but now it just makes me laugh my ass off.

As far as first car's go - nothing beats the '88 Camaro.