Tag Archives: Fellini

Mickey Rourke is so awesome in this.

5. 8 1/2 (Federico Fellini, 1963)

My mom is a big Mickey Rourke fan, I don’t really understood why, he’s just some greasy looking dirtbag who has been washed up since like 1987. He tried boxing or something then he played like a transvestite in Sin City. He was pretty good in Year of the Dragon, but really I don’t get what my mom sees in him. Isn’t he just a poor man’s Tom Sizemore? But nonetheless my mom swoons when she hears his name.

A few years ago I went through a brief infatuation with the film Ghost World. I tend to like movies with alienated loners, and this one fit the bill. Plus it had Steve Buscemi and a guy with a mullet. Now as a general rule joking about mullets is criminally passe at this point. But back in 2001, it was still somewhat relevant. That fact combined with the mullet guy being a total non-sequitur in the film make it completely acceptable and even today I believe it still holds up. The other thing this movie has is Matt Doherty. You probably don’t know who Matt Doherty is, so let me explain.

D2: The Mighty Ducks is my favorite guilty pleasure movie. It has Iceland as a world hockey power, a team from Trinidad & Tobago (that happens to wear tie-dye uniforms, and who celebrate a goal by playing steel drums), Kenny Wu (an Olympic figure skater turned hockey star), The Bash Brothers (who rock out to “Takin’ Care of Business”), Team USA learning about the spirit of hockey in a Los Angeles ghetto, The “knuckle-puck”, hockey being relevant in the US, an evil coach named Wolf “The Dentist” Stansson, Gordon Bombay learning about the dangers of selling out to corporate America, and the list goes on and on. It also has Matt Doherty as the wise cracking Lester Averman, always bringing the funny with lines like “They’re bigger! They’re stronger! They’re faster! They’ve got more facial hair!” in regards to Team Iceland.

Matt Doherty only appears briefly in “Ghost World”, as a clueless employee in a video store(which looks suspicially like Blockbuster). A customer can be seen asking the clerk if they have the film “8 1/2“. We cut to Thora Birch and Scarlett Johansson walking the aisles, and here’s Lester Averman’s time to shine: “Hello, how are you young ladies this afternoon, can I help you find a particular masterpiece movie?”. Averman is money in the bank. Cut back to the customer and the clerk. The clerk informs the customer that they do indeed have the film: “‘9 1/2 Weeks‘ with Mickey Rourke, you’ll find that in the Erotic Drama section”. The displeased customer informs him that he is looking for “8 1/2” the Fellini film. The clerk looks confused. End Scene. You can actually view the scene here.

As a rule any film that can be described as an “erotic drama” is probably terrible. Not having seen “9 1/2 Weeks” I can’t say for sure if it’s crappy or not. But it does have Mickey Rourke, and to me that’s not really a good thing. I am sure my mom liked it though.

On filmaffinity.com I gave 8 1/2, 8/10. It’s inconsistent and meandering(like all Fellini) but has some great scenes in it. Plus Marcello Mastroianni(father of Pat) is a fine piece of man-candy.