i made it down to cambridgeport this noontime for elias' 30th birthday movie marathon. i'd been monitoring the weather all weekend, hoping it'd be clear enough that i could at least ride my motocycle down to the 12 hour extravaganza. it was raining pretty hard earlier this morning but by the time i woke up the downpour had stopped and even the sun managed to poke out of the clouds. i first made a quick delivery of avocados to my parents before going to central square. since i didn't have lunch yet, i got a large no.6 spicy chicken sandwich combo from wendy's before arriving at elias and amanda's place. elias and i originally both worked at the screen house design department. he was one of the youngest employees; while most of us were in our mid to late 20's, he was fresh out of college when they hired him. so to see him now turn 30 years old is a milestone not only for him but for me as well. to mark this occasion, he had kept a ginormous winter beard which he promised not to shave off until his 30th birthday. so dedicated was he to this cause that he kept his beard even on his recent tropical island vacation. when i met him today, he had already trimmed a good chunk of his former beard, leaving behind a shaggy handlebar mustache (an intermediate stage) straight from the industrial age. to assuage the female participants of his annual movie marathon, he purposely injected more "chick flicks" into his lineup, eschewing the normal selection of action, horror, and weird. for each time slot between noon to midnight (a total of 6), audience could vote for either the girls' movie or the boys' movie.

eternal sunshine of the spotless mind (2004): i first saw eternal sunshine back in 2004. i think this is a brilliant film, about the power of love and memories. it's a powerfully poignant movie and one of those films that really touch me, which is surprising, because it stars jim carrey, an actor who used to be famous for talking out of his butt. eternal sunshine is all at once science fiction, romance, tragedy, and comedy, in a big melting pot of weirdness. elias actually had this as a guy movie; the female counterpart was amelie, which wasn't selected.

sense and sensibility (1995): although i knew of this movie, i'd never seen it before. watching a jane austen film is like the cinematic equivalent of fingernails on a blackboard for me. the film started off confusing as well, and i couldn't figure out who were the sister and mother characters. i took it as a personal challenge, looking for ways to ridicule the film, but by the end i found it surprisingly entertaining. i'm still inclined to say it was just a coincidence and i won't be seeing anymore austen movies anytime soon. this obviously was a girl movie; the male equivalent was no country for old men.

the princess bride (1987): everyone's seen this movie before and everyone loves it. it was either this movie or pan's labyrinth. both belonged in the fantasy category. although it's not a bad movie to see again, i personally would've preferred to have seen something new, although fantasy is a hard genre to come up with good movies (xanadu keeps on popping into my head for some reason though).

high fidelity (2000): this time slot was devoted to the cusack romance, a race between say anything and high fidelity. i picked say anything just because i've never seen it from beginning to end. unfortunately, the majority picked high fidelity, a movie that i dislike enough to try and sit it out. lucky for me the pizzas came during that time. i sat in the kitchen eating and reading a cooking magazine. i also wanted to sit it out because the screening room was getting awfully crowded, with something like 15 people (including elias' parents and sister, visiting from vermont) crammed into the living room. i rejoined everyone during the final 30 minutes though. i personally don't have a cult-like adoration for john cusack. i would've preferred to see better of dead, or one of my favorite romantic comedies, serendipity, along with kate beckinsale.

9 to 5 (1980): i'd never seen this movie in its entirety. if this is a movie about women's liberation, then it's done in the heavy-handed style of the 80's. all women are victims, and all men are pigs, if you take this film at face value. i'm probably reading too much into it, maybe it should be enjoyed as a simple escapist fantasy. two things i absolutely love about this movie though: a glimpse of what offices were like in 1980 and dolly parton. she's so earnest in her awshucks country ways, it made me feel even more guilty when i gazed upon her large, pendulous breasts - which i feel are the real stars of the film. the male selection for this time slot was secretary, which i thought was too much of a downer so i went with 9 to 5 instead.

13 going on 30 (2004): it was either this movie or tom hank's big. personally for me i rather watch agent sydney bristow tackle the world of high fashion magazines with the mind of a 13 year old girl trapped in the body of a beautiful 30 year old woman. the film is easily digestible but oh that ending! feels like the writers couldn't figure out how to resolve all the conflicts and just slapped on a quickie happy ending for the sake of happy endings.

i personally thought elias could've gone with a format where he picked a movie in chronological order up to his 30th birthday. so for example, the first movie would be from 1983 (assuming he was born in 1978), followed by 1988, 1993, 1998, 2003, and finally something from 2008. i would also love to see some movie mashups. so often during these marathons we spot recurring themes. for example, mark ruffalo was in spotless mind as well as 13 going on 30. although it'd probably require a lot of work, i'd love to see different movies sliced into one another for either dramatic or comedic effect.

dan showed up for a brief cameo in the late afternoon, not to watch movies, but just to say hello (he had a cold). throughout the day the sky would alternate between overcasted sunshine to darkened sky downpours with accompanying thunder and lightning. it'd stopped raining for at least a few hours by the time i left after midnight. temperatures were in the mid 40's, i made it home in record time and didn't even feel particularly cold.