A Monday Movie

A Monday Movie #5 – Making a film

Day 4003 in lockdown (or so it seems). Despite not being able to leave the house other than for groceries, I have found myself spinning many a plate. It’s strange to be so busy when nothing is happening – I feel like I have been working so much, but not actually doing anything. Today, I won’t be talking about a film I’ve seen, rather something we made.

I’m a creative; I see colour, I see weirdness, I see random ideas. So, after a while of doing plain day-to-day activities and lots of emails; I find myself a little bit starved with a need to create something. Sometimes its pie, other times it’s a script – it really is anyone’s guess.

girl making a film

On Saturday, I told myself I would do my best to relax and reset, but that didn’t work. Mid-morning I thought to myself “I’m going to make a film today.” and after vocalising this out loud, Jack immediately knew that I had dragged him into this extravaganza too.

Looking around our flat for inspiration, rummaging for props and the like, I calmly told Jack the idea and gently explained that he would in fact need to wear a corset and my mum’s heels. He was unphased, this wasn’t the first time I had given him a weird pitch followed by a weirder costume.

Honestly, filmmakers are strange.

I’m lucky to have someone around me who trusts in my vision and embraces the madness, and who is good fun all round. We set to work in changing the flat into a noir-esque set. We banished every hint of modern living from the flat and set the lights. It started to look like a film set.

At this point, I really should tell you the story of this film, but that wouldn’t be any fun considering I can’t share it with you yet. So, you will have to use your imagination; Jack is the only character, it’s a silent film (with a nice jazzy bassline) and Jack ends up in women’s clothing. Oh, and it’s black and white, because….decadence.

The best part about all of this is, despite my creative juices, I’m not a camera person – I like photography but I know nothing about actually filming. (That’s what my wonderful Dazey Hills crew is for.)

Honey I'm Home film poster

A big experiment in more ways than one, but I do look forward to showing you all. Hopefully, the fun poster will tide you over.

Until next time,

A Decadent Pea x

A Monday Movie

A Monday Movie #4

I imagine my blog today to be a lot like an abandoned cinema, or movie theater (whatever floats your boat).

Why is it dark? Where is everyone? Why isn’t the movie playing? Is that an untouched candy? No, it’s just a ticket stub from times gone…

I’m sorry for abandoning you, peas. It’s a fun and festive time of year but also an extremely busy one. Day to day, my life is all about movies – I’m a talent agent and filmmaker away from this decadent space. However, one of the many impacts of Covid this year has meant that my fun movie like endeavours have hit a bit of a halt, and so I have had to find other ways to make money. Hence my absence. This past week I have been adjusting to a new situation, and sadly it has left me little time for blogging.

But, this movie has a happy ending, because time management is a good thing and so is having money. I now hope to write my blogs ahead of time which means lots of fun content coming your way.

Now, let’s continue with the movie shall we? Unfortunately, I don’t have anything specific to write about today – I would imagine you are indulging in Christmas films, or, like me are desperately trying to finish the series you are currently binge watching to make space for lots of nice 2021 content.

I’m almost finished with Suits, if you were wondering.

So, I thought it would be interesting if I shared my favourite films with you. I use Letterboxd to keep track of my watching habits, watch lists and to generally have a nose at what everyone else is watching. It’s a fun app to grow your personal favourites and must – sees.

To get started, I want to show you my favourite films – this is a personalised list I have made which is ever changing. I don’t know how people can have consistent favourites – there is just too much out there! So, at the time of writing, these are my favourite films. I’m not sure why there is 41 films on there. s 41 the new top 10?

So, there you go. Peruse at leisure. Silently judge me. Or, find something new! I’m not sure what to recommend you first as they are all pretty great, but maybe we should start something called A Decadent Pea Film Challenge. A film a day starting today would take you to the end of January, and let’s be honest – who goes outside in January anyway?

If you decide to watch a movie from this list – I’d love to talk about it with you! Send me a message or talk to me on Instagram – @adecadentpea

Until next time, and happy holidays everyone!

A Decadent Pea x

A Monday Movie

A Monday Movie #3

It’s raining, and has been raining for some time. I think that possibly it will rain forever. Also, it’s really cold. As I write this, I am sat with my back against the radiator, wearing a roll neck jumper and a blazer, and I’m quite tempted to stick on my head wrap and find my dressing gown, but I won’t because it’s the middle of the day and I have responsibilities. As cold as it is here (realistically, about 11° I know that in some places, it’s really really really cold. Like, for example in Chicago right now it’s -2° Why Chicago? Well, because I’m freezing I can’t find a better way to introduce this week’s film, I’m sorry readers.

But, if you haven’t seen or heard of this film – please find the time to watch it. Those of you that have seen it (and obviously love it) please message me as I’m trying to find the rest of the dancers for my rendition of Cell Block Tango.

Chicago – Rob Marshall [2002]

Okay, so I know on this blog I like to keep everything as vintage as possible and to be honest, this film is younger than me – but I share it with good reason. It’s a 1920’s crime MUSICAL. Come on, how cool is that.

I thought this film would be a nice way to continue from last weeks blog because, much like Streetcar, this film was on the stage before the screen, both versions fantastic. I saw Chicago on stage at my local theatre a few years ago, but would love to see it on the West End or Broadway (maybe if I get my dance troupe together….) anyway, it was fantastic. Like with my other film blog posts, I don’t like to give too much away but let me tell you this.

A women’s prison in the early 1920’s against the backdrop of a grizzly winter in Chicago, coupled with a tap dancing Richard Gere. YES you heard me.

I think the great thing about this film is that it’s suitable for a wide audience. Often, there is a stigma that musicals are targeted at women, or those who come from a musical theatre background – I wouldn’t agree, but I know that this a popular opinion. Obviously, there are crime scenes etc so not suitable for a younger audience, but I think teens and up can enjoy this, dare I say, decadent musical.

To put my theory to the test, I decided to call my Dad who is an avid musical lover, and military man alike. The conversation went like this.

ME “Hi Da, I know you are at work – but this will only take a sec, it’s for my blog. Do you like Chicago, the musical?”

DA: “Ello. Yeah, with Catherine Zita Jones…. and the guy from Trainspotting.”

ME: ‘Yes, and no, he’s in Moulin Rouge.”

DA: “Oh right, that’s good too. Yeah I like Chicago.”

ME: “Would you say it’s good?”

DA: “Yeah, I like it. I like musicals too. You should write down that Squaddies like musicals ‘cos it’s a nice escape from reality.”

ME: “Aw, that’s nice. I’ll put that down. Are you eating a sandwich?”

DA: “Yeah, it’s my lunchtime.”

ME: “Cool, thanks Da. Bon appetit.”

I’m not sure I need to write anything else about this film after that, so I’m going to go and eat a sandwich of my own.

If you watch it for the first time, let me know what you think!

Until next time,

A Decadent Pea x

A Monday Movie

A Monday Movie #2

I write this post tonight as I am sandwiched between two zoom webinars, so it may be a quick one…although, it may not. I am a filmmaker and talent agent day to day, and it goes without saying that films are incredibly important to me. I could write endless lists of films that I love and why, but I’m going to keep this blog-friendly for you all and write about a film I love that fits with the ethos of A Decadent Pea.

(Side note: and little bit of self promotion, if you would like to have a peek at the films I love outside of this vintage-sphere, you can look at my Letterboxd account)

If you did look at my Letterboxd account, you will see in my top 4 films sits A Streetcar Named Desire [1951] which is the centre of todays blog, yay!

I first learned about this film, and play when I was taking acting classes in my early teens. My teacher at the time was wonderful, she had a brilliant sense of humour, a brilliant list of things to watch and read – and fantastic advice on acting and writing.

At the age of 14 (ish) I didn’t have much interest in a black and white film from the 50’s, I was much more interested in the likes of teen comedies with pink wardrobes, and probably Lindsay Lohan. Anyway, I was told about this film from this wise lady who once taught me acting and writing, and I was adamant I just needed to see it.

So, the next time I was in town with my friends, I made a dash for HMV and searched desperately for this DVD that I had no knowledge about other than the cover.

And there it was…. Instead of me writing about my journey home, enjoy this GIF of the wonderfully beautiful Marlon Brando.

What was I saying? Oh yeah, the film.

I think when I watched it the first time, I fancied myself a bit of a teenage film connoisseur… look at me watching an old black and white film, look at me, a cinema enthusiast. In reality, I don’t think I understood the actual plot or much else until I’d watched it a few times over.

Fast forward to now, I’ve seen this film probably over 15 times – and I chase down every time that its playing on stage. Not only is it a great film, but Streetcar was originally written for the stage and I would recommend everyone to see it as and when they can. Fun fact: The play by Tennesse Williams made its debut on broadway on 3rd December 1947, wasn’t this post timed well!

I hate reading spoilers, especially accidental ones – but here is a brief plot outline of what happens in the film (please watch it)

A young woman lives with her husband in New Orleans, going about her life as normal in her tiny studio apartment when her sister Blanche (a stylish but fragile ‘southern belle’) moves in after suffering a loss (or a few losses). Drama ensues.

That’s me trying to tell you what happens without really telling you what happens. I’ve lived in a studio apartment, things get stressful.

After all, a woman’s charm is fifty percent illusion.

– Blanche Dubois

I’m really not going to say any more, because I don’t want to spoil things for you, and also my dinner is nearly ready. So, let me know if you watch the film and we can talk about it together!

Until next time,

A Decadent Pea

A Decadent alphabet

I have a very overactive mind, and sometimes it’s hard to slow down…especially when I am trying to go to sleep. As a result, I often pester my partner into playing word association games or something equally random, and last night I requested that he help me make an A-Z of decadent things.

“What do you mean? Like, foods.” He said. “Or people?”

I had to start off with a few of my own ideas, but I think on the whole we did quite well, let me know what you think. We ended up with a mixture of phrases, songs, books, films and superstars. Job well done, I fell asleep soon after.

A is for Art Deco – A style of visual art, responsible for the geometric patterns we know and love, if you’d like to read more click here.

B is for Boardwalk Empire – [2010] One of the best shows I have seen that depicts the Prohibition and Scorsese produced it! A cinema lovers dream.

C is for Chanel – duh!

D is for Dean Martin – Ain’t That A Kick In the Head? [1960]

E is for Ella Fitzgerald – Go and listen to all her music. All. Of. It.

F is for Flapper Girl – The bob haircut, the rouge lips, the beaded dresses. More than just a halloween costume.

G is for Gatsby – You say Leonardo Dicaprio, I say read the book.

H is for Highball Glass – Just waiting for a cocktail.

I is for Ingrid Bergman – Casablanca [1942]

J is for Jane Russell – Half of Gentlemen Prefer Blondes [1953]

K is for King Kong [1933]

L is for Lee Miller – I bought the book Age of Light by Whitney Scharer during my trip to Bordeaux and have recommended it to EVERYONE. Including you, reader.

M is for Marilyn Monroe – The other half of Gentlemen Prefer Blondes [1953]

N is for Negroni – A tasty Gin based cocktail originally from Florence, Italy.

O is for Orson Welles – HE WAS 25 WHEN HE MADE CITIZEN KANE [1941]. 25. I’m 25 (in two weeks) and I’m writing this list.

P is for Pin Up – The original poster girl! Marilyn Monroe.

Q is for Queen (See: Audrey Hepburn.) This one was hard to think of, but I think we can all agree Audrey is a queen.

R is for Rear Window – [1954] Essential viewing from Mr Alfred Hitchcock.

S is for Sunset Boulevard – [1950] Also essential viewing. “I’m going to be bigger than peanut butter!”

T is for Tinsel Town – Hollywood, baby.

U is for Un Chien Andalou – [1929] We love surrealism here.

V is for Vile Bodies – Written by Evelyn Waugh [1930] I would also recommend this!

W is for Warren Beatty – Okay, so we are moving forward a lot here – but the man made Bonnie and Clyde [1967]

X is for Xerox – moving backwards again, the invention of photocopying, and the brand that bought it to light.

Y is for You Can’t Get Away With Murder – [1939] Mr Humphrey Bogart.

Z is for Zelda Fitzgerald – The Mrs F Scott Fitzgerald. The original Flapper girl.

And there we have it, a list of random, decadent things. I hope you enjoyed it, learned some things and have some inspiration of what to watch or listen to next!

Until next time,

A Decadent Pea

A Monday Movie

A Monday movie #1

Over the weekend I thought that a nice thing to do would be to write about a movie on Monday’s. Seems simple, right?

Wrong. Unfortunately, I have already failed in my mission to watch a movie today (or this past week for that matter, I’ve been binge watching Suits) so I don’t have anything to review or suggest for you.

But, what I do have is a film of my own that I thought would be good fun to share. It’s on brand, on theme, and I think gives another little breadcrumb into who I am away from the blog.

I made ‘The Grumpy Director’ with my beloved crew at The Dazey Hills Company, with the class of UK Film Academy, and wonderful composing by Vintage Keys Studios – creating a Charlie Chaplin inspired (or Buster Keaton, take your pick) short film. Often, films these days are all about moving forward with the latest technology, and for this one it was so much fun to travel back in time for the day – I think the students really enjoyed it to!

Anyway, I really hope you enjoy it – it was so much fun to make! Next week, I will have another film to write about in more detail. If you have a film you’d like to recommend, then please do!

Have a great week,

A Decadent Pea