The Manhattan Project--2016 A to Z Theme

Always a work in progress--welcome to my blog...

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

F is for Favorites

       Today is Francis Ford Coppola's birthday.  And what's that got to do with the cost of fromage in France?, you may say-- besides his name having two Fs in it.   Coppola's Apocalypse Now is one of my favorite films and today I'm talking about favorites.

         Apocalypse Now is one of those films people either really like or strongly dislike. It partly relates to one of my favorite films of childhood--Wizard of Oz--which to this day remains a favorite.  The way I see it Apocalypse Now is a kind of Wizard of Oz for adults, with an assortment of characters on a strange journey to find some eccentric man who rules from his secluded place.  In one film the quest is for "home" and in the other the answer is "horror". 

          One of my favorite film directors is Federico Fellini.  Some of his films that I am especially fond of are La Strada, Roma, and Ginger and Fred.  I reviewed the latter film back in December. La Strada, or The Road, is a 1954 film starring Anthony Quinn.  Fellini Roma is a surrealistic bio-travel fantasy that looks at the city of Rome.

           There is a common theme in all of these films that makes me very partial to them. They all have to do in some way with journeys.  The story of the journey is a common one throughout the history of fiction.  In part the concept of journey represents the journey we face in life from birth to death.  Then there is the adventure of surprise and discovery of what is going to happen next.  The arrival is just the end of the story that we see in the film, but we are enthralled by what is involved in getting to the destination.

            Films like these are particularly appealing to me because I have a gypsy soul.  I love traveling.  I have spent much of my life doing things that have involved travel and I'm always ready for a new adventure.  From the comfort of my couch I can embark on an odyssey that brings me to places that are strange and that take me to the heart of my dreams, nightmares, and fantasies.  It is the exhilaration of getting to a destination where I can bask in memories and meditations.

            Such is the journey we are on in the Blogging From A to Z April Challenge.  This is our blog adventure and already we have been surprised by the many different approaches that can be taken to Z destination. There are many routes that we are taking and each offers a fascinating look at what blogging is all about.  It should not be the arduous trek of Captain Willard in search of Colonel Kurtz and his visions of horror, but it should be closer to the fun and magic of Dorothy and friends on their way to see the wizard.

            That is not to say that all of the blogs are frivolous fun.  Some are very serious and require a lot of thought.   Others dazzle, while some are like a relaxing friendly visit with the neighbors.  There are blogs that instruct us and there are those that entertain us.  They all have something special to add to the mix.

           If you ask me to name my favorite movies, I have already named a few of them.  Want to know my favorite music or books?   I can't come up with just one answer, but I can give you list.  And if you want to know which are my favorite blogs, you might as well be asking which of my kids are my favorite.  They all are because they are all part of my family. Every blog in this challenge is part of our blog family and you all have something unique and meaningful to offer and I thank you for that.

           Our blog journey has just begun and the enthusiasm is high.  Try to keep a steady pace and focus ahead.  Enjoy the scenery--keep checking those other blogs and making the comments so you can support each other.  Just don't run out of fuel.  This is not a contest or a job, but it is your own personal challenge. We are all rooting for you finish the journey to the end.

Special note:
You can now comment on the Box o' Whine site -- at last!  This site was having problems accepting comments and now the problem has been fixed.


  1. I agree that it would be difficult to pick one blog as my favorite but if I had to pick my top 10 you would most certainly be in it.

  2. That's a good list of movies. One of my favourite all time movies is probably the 1960 version of H.G. Wells' The Time Machine, likely because, like you, I love the journey aspect of the story. The remake didn't do justice to the story, but the original was just amazing.
    Another favourite of mine is the original Planet of the Apes, though this is probably more to do with me loving the idea of the future becoming something entire alien to us.

    I'm glad to see that everyone is keeping up with the challenge do. You guys are awesome!

  3. Count me as someone who really loves Apocalypse Now-its one of my all time favorites, though I like the Wizard of OZ too.

  4. I never thought of those movies having "journey" as a common theme. But then I am dense- I never even thought of Favourite as a word I could blog about :-(

    I'm loving the journey so far, Lee. Found some wonderful blogs I would not otherwise have found. Thank you! (maybe that can be my T post)

  5. I love how you refer to us bloggers as your family. It is truly amazing the bond we all have made in such a short time. Thank you for the journey...

  6. Favorites - that's a good one! I was challenged with today, but tomorrow's was easy. (You'll see what I mean.)
    Enjoying the challenge. I try to comment on two new blog participants every day and I've met some nice people in the process.

  7. Morning Lee. I love Apocalypse Now. Have you seen the extended directors cut with the scenes with the French Family?

    I found them long and odd but certainly not bad and they do fit with the themes of the film.

  8. My, what divergent favorites! Of course the Life/journey cliche wouldn't be so popular if it wasn't so true! Now I'm craving a road-trip!

  9. Sounds like you don't like visiting your neighbours arlee, or you think they have nothing to say that will be of interest you

  10. Thanks Lee for an entertaining "F" BLOG.It never ceases to amaze me where you get all your information from.As you know my Favourite singer is Daniel O Donnell only problem is where I get my music from on the internet there are only 2 songs of his!!!!!
    Loking forward to the "G", this challenge has been a real one for me as I have found more and more friends than anticipated and am spending much more time commenting.
    So a bigh Thank you......20 to go.

  11. Lee, When I read your description of a journey being from birth to death and the baby, I thought immediately of the movie, "2001, A Space Odyssey" and it was so futuristic for its time. I think it should be included in one of the top ten. It was awing in its large screen viewing. Just a thought. Most of the movies you mentioned, I have not seen. I just read through the list of bloggers and their subjects. What a wide range of titles! I look forward to reading as many of them as I can.
    Regards to you,

  12. Very interesting. I have never seen the movie. I think I will have to look for it.

    It has been quite fun thinking of letters and posts. I chose to have fun to day with favorties so you're right, it might be the most favorite letter.

  13. It's very interesting to see how creative the blogging community is by the diversity of topics for each of the letters in your challenge.

  14. I need to watch your movie - never have. May be the only person on earth who has not. . .

  15. I love the idea of posting about some favorites...a great 'F' topic! I also love films and while I haven't seen any of the Fellini films you mentioned here, La Strada is on my list for sure!

    A great post and I am so excited to be on this great journey with all of you!

    May God bless your day Lee!

  16. Ron -- Thank you for saying so. The feeling is mutual. Haven't been making it by to see as much lately since I've been so preoccupied with the Blogging From A to Z April Challenge

    Jamie -- the movies you cite are great ones. Time travel is another favorite genre but they are journey movies as well.

    David -- a man with good taste.

    not enough-- I get inspired every day for new words to use -- we could never run out of topics.

    Rae -- I have seen a lot of caring and bonding going on and it's great.

    Alex -- looking forward to what's next. And thanks for the comments you've been giving-- I've been seeing you on sites everywhere.

    Matthew -- Redux is the version I own on DVD. I've only watched it once. It was good, but maybe too much. Then again I was so used to seeing the original. No matter-- they're both excellent.

    Will -- I'm always ready for a road trip!

    Cathy -- I think everybody has something interesting to say. After your comment I went back to reword what I said because I did kind of make a weird combination there. Thanks -- I like when things like that are pointed out to help me edit better. You've given me my idea for for N topic.

    Yvonne -- People have really been loving your site. I'm so happy you've added so many more new followers.

    Grammy -- 2001 is an excellent film that I had not really associated with being a journey film --it's the ultimate journey. I remember going to see it in the theater in the summer of 1968 down in Chattanooga. It just totally amazed me.

    Gregg -- I think it's a great film,but a lot of folks would dispute me on that. It's based on Joseph Conrad's Heart of Darkness.

    Karen -- I agree. The range has been so interesting.

  17. favorite movie is the Wizard of Oz as well...I also like the original Planet of the Apes Jamie...I did not choose favorites as my F word but Food...hope ya'll enjoy it! This challenge has been Fun for me...Blessings ya'll!

  18. I thought your post was a creative use of the letter F. Apocalypse Now wouldn’t be on my list of favorite movies but it is a movie that’s hard to forget.

  19. Trudy -- La Strada is definitely worth the look although a lot of people avoid it because it's in Black & White with subtitles. But it's a heartwrencher.

    Shannon --- Food is a good word.

    Jane -- I'm a big fan of surrealism and all of these films are pretty surrealistic.

  20. I missed out on a lot of movies, etc. in my younger days because for religious beliefs we couldn't watch TV or movies. So I've never seen Apocalypse Now, believe it or not.

    I do LOVE to travel and will one day visit the site of the nuclear disaster, Chernobyl.

    This A to Z challenge has been a fantastic journey Arlee. So I thank you again for putting it together.


  21. >>Apocalypse Now is one of those films people either really like or strongly dislike.<<

    Well, rLEE-b, my Brother, I'm that "odd man out" - but then, you know, I nearly always am. (Ha!) I neither really liked nor really disliked 'Apocalypse Now', it merely bored me. (I have gotten a lot of mileage out of that "Smell Of Napalm In The Morning" line, however.) Worst of all, it bored my buddy, Andy, so badly that he fell asleep in the theatre, and Andy, was a wacko pro-military "Kill 'Em All And Let God Sort 'Em Out" kinda guy. A war movie that puts Andy to sleep has REALLY accomplished something unique! (Sadly, Andy's doing "The Big Sleep" now.)

    Anyway and Oh Well, to each his own, eh?

    Well, Bro, I'm off now to F-up "Day F" with mo' "Stuffs".

    Enjoy the F-Day, my "Friend!"
    Yak Later...

    ~ "Lonesome Dogg" McMe

    Postscript: Your daughter, Emilee, stopped by my Blog yesterday to say Hello. That was nice. Later...

  22. Lisa --Apocalypse Now is not about the Biblical Apocalypse, but Chernobyl might be. That's a strange fascination with Chernobyl you've got there, girl, but I agree that it does sound interesting.

    Stephen --I think you've hit the nail on the head. Most Nam vets that I know hate the movie and military minded folks have a hard time appreciating the movie. I think a lot of people go into the film expecting a war movie in the traditional sense. Conrad's original source story was not about war. The film is a psycho-wacko surrealistic adventure journey much like the Wizard of Oz except dark and ominous. I like the surrealism of the story and the philosophy of ambiguity. But I like Fellini as well.
    Emilee's a fine young lady and she follows my blog faithfully. Glad she checked out yours.

  23. that is so true and it goes to show that not all minds think alike, we all have something different to offer :-)

  24. I have learned so much from this challenge and have made some friends..Thank you so much for starting it.

  25. My husband really digs that first movie.

  26. Great post, Lee! I too love FFC. Your quote about the price of frommage in France made me laugh...

    I can't pick a favorite blog, but yours is definitely in my top ten! Thanks for this entry, it was wonderful!

  27. I'm with Stephen. Apocalypse bored me. I'm not sure I ever sat through the entire thing.
    But 'favorites' is a good word and it's always interesting to read about movies I'm not familiar with in case I ever have time to watch one.

  28. The Wizzard of Oz has been a favorite of mine forever....:-Hugs

  29. Wizard of Oz is one of my all-time favourite movies as well. Love it :) May just have to pull it out this weekend!

    I can never pick just one favourite anything either - I always make a list!

  30. I love Apocolypse now. Pulp Fiction, Good Fellas, Training Day are others. So are Back to the Future, Spaceballs, and What About Bob.

    Hard to pick top 10 blogs. I like so many. I appreciate the diversity in the ones I visit.

    Stephen Tremp

  31. Great post I loved it; I grew up around film. My Dad and Mom met at a movie theatre. He was the projectionist; she the candy concession gal. My first job was
    the ticket window..loved it! We were always going to the movies and taking friends. My comfort food is popcorn. I think a lot of my favs
    are journey type, as well.
    I love how you tied in our journey of visiting blogs, seeing new views, making friends and finding all types of inspiration.

  32. Loved your post. Fred and Ginger are my favorites too! Been enjoying the diversity on this challenge...I'm learning so much.


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