Heat. Up to 7 or 8 viewings now? (Filed under: Heat). Caught a few more “time” references this go-round. Hanna’s wife offers him coffee before he heads out – can’t, no time. The daughter’s anxiety attack is about being late for her father. And of course the parting shot when Hanna meets with the snitch. One other minor thing: the Pietà statue at the hospital at the beginning of the movie is echoed by our protagonists at the end. I might have to call this my favorite movie.
Roma. It is a seriously beautiful but I left frustrated. In several emotional, daunting, or stressful moments the camera drifts away from our protagonist to just sort of take in the scenery. In form, it seems like it… doesn’t care? She’s a bit of a cipher. Perhaps that’s the point, and the broader time and place is what we’re meant to understand. You can see the climax coming a mile away. I like the water imagery, but the astronauts even more.
Harry Potter and the Sorceror’s Stone. What a delight. These movies could have gone off the rails in a million different ways, but they really came through. Somehow I felt the ~magic~ in this one, like literal gasping. So fun. (Side note: this came out 17 years ago???????)
Memories of Murder. I give this a solid A-. Pretty mesmerizing, and pretty depressing. I loved the lush orchestral score. Some Chinatown vibes here and there.
Bonnie and Clyde. The criminal road trip movie is a tough one. I think I respect and appreciate this one more than I enjoy it. Those birds at the end, though. What a moment! I’ll take Badlands over this one, given the choice.
The Game. Good harmless fun. Slowly plugging the holes in my David Fincher knowledge. Current rankings:
Logan. I had sworn off superhero films for a while, needed a break. This was a solid re-entry. And a relief to see a superhero film that’s not a direct sequel, and also not an origin story. Hard to see a hero so thoroughly vulnerable. Really fun limo chase.
Network. Oof. Too real, these days. And pretty great. Recommended pairing: Nightcrawler.
Deliverance. Pretty incredible movie. I like the sound work, the atmospherics. Young Jon Voight here reminds me of a young version of my dad (minus the rock climbing). Man vs. wild is just another name for man vs. man. 🤔
Willow Creek. This had some fun sound design. Super intense at the climax. Good chemistry from our lead pair, too. No masterpiece, but it takes the mold from The Blair Witch Project, trims some fat, and gives us what we want. Like in The Orphanage, I like the stress more than the scares.
Transsiberian. Man, Woody Harrelson is a treasure.
Testament. Really good. I’d like to see more post-apocalyptic films like this. It’s just people, a community, dealing with it and trying to support each other. How times change and how it changes them. Good slow burn.
Cave of Forgotten Dreams. Cool mostly for the fact that the cave exists, and that they got extended access to it. I saw some pictographs out in Utah a couple years ago, maybe a square meter or so’s worth on a cliff wall, and still think of them with awe. Can’t imagine what a whole cave-ful is like in person. Filed under: Werner Herzog.
Mr. Brooks. Two things I really like here: 1) villainous Kevin Costner (cf. A Perfect World) and 2) showing the subconscious/alter ego/devil on the shoulder in William Hurt. I think the plot might have a bit too much going on, but it’s fun stuff.
The Uninvited (2009). A remake of a Korean film. Elizabeth Banks and David Strathairn are just about always worth a watch, but this one can be skipped. Less than 90 minutes though! Maybe I just prefer more loose ends?
Klute. A young Jane Fonda and a young Donald Sutherland. I don’t remember ever seeing them performing young. Didn’t love the movie, but just to see and understand the early talent is cool. Good companion films: Three Days of the Condor, The Parallax View, All the President’s Men, Night Moves.
Night Moves. This was great. So much despair in sunny places. Gene Hackman has a crazy amount of charisma. (The more recent and unrelated movie called Night Moves is good, too.)
Psycho. Revival showing on a big screen. The movie has gotten better as a I age. Funny how that works. I appreciated it so much more this time around. Filed under: Hitchcock.
Mulholland Falls. If you must watch an early/mid-century L.A. crime tale, let it be Chinatown instead.
The Fly (1986). Excellent. I hadn’t seen this in ages. I remember watching it as a kid and being kinda bored and impatient. Totally different experience as an adult. You kinda know what’s coming and it’s supported and pushed the whole way with the character development. Fun performance.