These are both great movies, and great for very different reasons. The thing is, PTA was just getting warmed up with Boogie Nights, while Spike Lee was at the top of his game with Malcolm X. Also, Boogie Nights feels like it's basically the same movie now that it was in 1997: it's still very cool, and very stylish. Malcolm X, on the other hand, feels even more urgent, more necessary, than when it was made. It's a movie we need right now in 2018, so I can't vote against it, at least, not in this round.
Denzel Washington in his top form is too important to lose, not to mention Spike Lee at his best. PTA, I promise to fight for you in next years Madness.
Give me one of Spike Lee’s Best over one of the Worst PTA films.
Can’t stand Boogie Nights. Go back and stay in that grimy 70s of Chatsworth.
I've definitely developed a new philosophy about these brackets. Will almost always vote for original ideas over biopics / docs / most adaptations, because the stories of the real people still exist, and the books still exist.
In this matchup, I guess you could argue that PTA's short film about Dirk Diggler would still be around and that "Boogie Nights" was influenced by a lot of real life stories from the porn industry, but...it's still just too brilliant to vote against. I loved "Malcolm X" when I saw it, but it's been a while. "Boogie Nights" is seminal.
I'm seeing a lot of people saying that PTA's best / most essential films were post-90s. I don't even know where to begin with that, except to chalk it up to personal taste and love for messier, angrier movies.
But this one's "Boogie Nights" all the way.
Bio pics should automatically lose because there are other ways to learn the same story.
Plus... Boogie Nights is a masterpiece. I like simple pleasures, like butter in my ass, lollipops in my mouth. That's just me. That's just something that I enjoy.
I'm still pissed about Naked losing to Boogie Nights, so Malcolm X would it get my vote on that alone. And then you consider how great a film Malcolm X is, and it's no competition.
Malcolm X is a masterpiece- a mesmerizing, epic take on poorly understood pieces of American history and a film that everyone should watch... and Boogie Nights is a gleefully trashy piece of sexploitation that has nothing of value to teach anyone. So why did I find this choice so hard? To hell with it, and me, and I’ll probably hate myself in the morning, but I voted for Boogie Nights. Do you have any coke at this party?
Spike Lee for the win, 100%
Boogie Nights is infinitely rewatchable. Malcom X is not. Case closed.
In the end, I don't care if Spike Lee needs to be represented by something. I don't care about the need to fight this tournament's becoming Madness So White. It's not about representation, justice, or timely societal needs; it's about which is the better film. Period.
Malcolm X is the better film.
(And *man* do I love me some Boogie Nights!)
I feel like this match-up is some sick cosmic joke for me saying last week that Malcolm X probably rightfully deserves to win this whole thing, while also giving a very personal glowing ode to Boogie Nights as the first movie that truly turned me into a capital-F Film lover. I love both of these movies so much.
But there isn't a hint of irony or hipster contrarianism in my statement about Malcolm X. I just flat out think it's a powerhouse of a perfect film and stands above even all the top seeds in this tournament. Yes, even those ones. It's THAT good, and even though I know deep in my heart that it will eventually be knocked off in this round or further ones, I have to give it every bit of support I can for now. And when it loses, I'll be imagining a hilariously scathing and incendiary Spike Lee rant against the entire Filmspotting audience for assassinating a rare black classic in favor of the "pure", lily white snows of Fargo, North Dakota. Or Pulp Fiction. Whatever.
One of the toughest of all the ones to choose, but in the end, the Best Films of the 90s need a Spike Lee film moving along more than they need a PTA film to move on. This was the decade where Spike was essential, and Anderson's essential films were yet to come.