The Liebster Award is a way for bloggers to recognize other bloggers and welcome each other into the community. I was extremely chuffed that both MIB’s Instant Headache and Lea of Silentology nominated me! When you receive a Liebster, you must:
i. Answer 11 questions from the person who nominated you;
ii. Tell your readers 11 random facts about yourself; and
iii. Nominate up to 11 other bloggers to receive the Liebster, and give them 11 questions to answer in turn.
In fact, both my nominations came some time ago – at the time I was super busy (and perhaps a little shy), so I apologize for the belatedness of this response! With the questions, I’ll split between MIB’s and Lea’s in order to keep it to eleven. Here goes:
1. Which decade of film do you appreciate the most? This is a deceptively difficult question—do I say teens or twenties: stylistic perfection, or intriguing development and experimentation? Currently, I’m very invested in the teens, so I guess that’s my answer.
2. What is one very obscure or off-the-wall film you would recommend? Obscure to the general public: Kind Hearts and Coronets (GB 1949)—a wickedly funny film, and surely one of the most brilliant scripts ever. Obscure to film people: Девушка с коробкой or The Girl with the Hatbox (USSR 1927)—Boris Barnet directs the wonderful Anna Sten in a Soviet drama-comedy. Obscure to silent film people: does the work of Yevgeni Bauer count? If not, I’ll say Одна из Многих | One of Many (USSR 1927), a charming look at film fandom; and on the more off-the-wall side, Balançoires (FR 1928), a strange but striking experimental film set in a carnival.
3. Which three places/countries must you visit before you die? New York City; Il Cinema Ritrovato in Bologna; Paisley Park.
4. If someone handed you a million dollars, what frivolous thing would you buy first? This question kills me, because I am very practical when it comes to money, so my immediate thought is “kill my student loan!” But a fantastic extravaganze—well, I really enjoy travelling, so I could sort out question 3 pretty fast! For a more film-related answer: maybe I would fund the restoration/release of a film that I really want to see but that’s not currently available. Oh, and I would buy Pina Menichelli’s owl headdress from Il fuoco—please, please, let this still exist.
5. You have the choice between two superpowers: learning any language in seconds, or being able to fix any car problem instantly. You must choose! The former! This one is easy—I’m really interested in languages, and I have never owned a car, nor do I drive more than a handful of times a year.
6. Okay, Keaton or Chaplin? Love them both, but Keaton has a special place in my heart.
7. What song do you want played at your funeral? As possibly an even bigger music nerd than a silent film one, this is tough. So why not opt for the obvious and go for Sparks’ Number 1 Song in Heaven? Great band, great song.
8. When it comes to movie productions, is bigger always better? I do love spectacle, but of the costume/set/choreography kind rather than the explosions/car crash kind. I also love work that goes to extremes in some way, perhaps through experimental techniques, bold performance, or big ideas. So, that’s a soft yes.
9. If you could swap gender for a day, what would be the one thing you would most look forward to doing? Surely there is only one answer to this question. *shifty eyes*
10. If the opportunity arose for you to have memory erased of just one film so you can watch it again for the first time, what would that film be? The video to Bowie and Jagger’s cover of “Dancing in the Street” probably. Hahaha, I love it so much. Serious film answer: Sherlock, Jr., which just made my draw drop the first time I saw it. Another is Morgiana (CZ 1972), one of my favourite films.
11. What song, if any, has made you cry? So many of my memories have musical components that it would probably be a long list. There are several by Magnetic Fields that would be good candidates—I find their music so bittersweet.
And 11 facts about me:
1. I’ve been vegetarian for about 15 years.
2. I share my birthday with Theda Bara, Clara Bow, and William Powell.
3. I’m a massive p-funk fan. One of my longest and strongest musical loves!
4. Except for one brief period, I’ve never lived more than a few kilometres from the sea.
5. I have very short hair which is currently dark red.
6. I have four flatmates.
7. I love very spicy food, to the extent that people sometimes ask me if I am a smoker – nope, just trying to kill off my tastebuds the natural way!
8. My text alert tone is the bell pattern from Run-D.M.C.’s “Peter Piper”. (Which is itself a sample from Bob James’ “Take me to the Mardi Gras”, which it turns out was originally written by Paul Simon, of all people).
9. I have a crescent-shaped scar by my right eye from where I was hit by a kayak as a kid.
10. I sincerely believe that naturally rectangular foods such as sandwiches taste better if you cut them into triangles.
11. My first job was in a movie theatre.
1. Who would play you in the movie of your life?
2. What is the last book you read that really impressed you?
3. You’re making a screwball comedy, and you can cast anyone from cinema history, with the caveat that the two leads must not have appeared opposite each other before. Who are your leads?
4. Five years from now, do you see yourself living in the same place as you do currently?
5. Is there any film that you regret watching, and why?
6. Which hypothetical Tim Burton-directed biopic film would you rather watch: a film called Helena Bonham-Carter, in which Helena Bonham-Carter is played by Johnny Depp, or a film called Johnny Depp, in which Johnny Depp is played by Helena Bonham-Carter?
7. Pick a Kate Bush single: “Wuthering Heights”, “Running Up That Hill”, “Sat in Your Lap”.
8. Let’s say that you were given a six-month paid sabbatical from your day job. What would you do with that time?
9. Desert island scenario. If you could only listen one musician/band/singer for the rest of your life, who would it be?
10. Do you collect any kind of item?
11. Name a film that you love that you wish was better known.
Thanks, and have fun!