Monday, December 31, 2012

The Year So Far

My top ten of 2012 as of December 31st:

1. Holy Motors
2. Barbara
3. Amour
4. Berberian Sound Studio
5. Frankenweenie
6. Sister
7. Tabu
8. Looper
9. Rust and Bone
10. Moonrise Kingdom

And the bottom five, from least worst to most worst: Mirror Mirror, Wrath of the TitansThe Dark Knight Rises, Purge and Pieta.

What I'm dying to see the most: 1. FRANCES HA. I'm sure I'll have to wait at least until summer, though, like with Margaret last year. Also looking forward to No, The Loneliest PlanetThe Master and Zero Dark Thirty.

What I'm not looking forward to at all, but will still almost certainly watch (of course, most of these will get a load of Oscar nominations):

1. Les Misérables
A bombastic musical directed by Tom Hooper? Do not want.
2. Django Unchained
I do enjoy some of Tarantino's films (more precisely,the 1997-2007 period), but Django looks terrible to me.
3. Seven Psychopaths
Hated In Bruges. This one seems only a little less obnoxious.
4. Life of Pi
Mildly interested in the visuals, but that's it.
5. Silver Linings Playbook
Probably a slightly-above-average romcom that's wildly overpraised.

I didn't include The Hobbit, because I'm not willing to torture myself that much - the LOTR trilogy was hard enough to sit through. Plus, already the poster gave me hives.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

"The End Is Near, The Plague Is Here"

So, I saw Epidemic, a sort-of-a-horror movie from Lars von Trier's early days, and whaddayaknow! It turns out that Dancer in the Dark wasn't the first film for which he co-wrote a song:

The juxtaposition between the quite horrifying final scene and this totally 80s end credits pop is amazing in an almost Lynchian way. It's a shame that Epidemic wasn't released in the US (at least according to IMDb) and therefore wasn't eligible for the Best Original Song Oscar, because obviously it would have deserved to win hands down.

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Some Lynchian Thoughts

I watched Eraserhead for the second time a few days ago, and it got me thinking that...

1) people don't talk often enough how great Jack Nance is in it. Performances by male actors rarely move me as much as this one - those sad eyes just kill me.

2) people also don't talk often enough about David Lynch as a great actor's director, but the lead performances alone prove that he certainly is one: Nance in Eraserhead, John Hurt in The Elephant Man, Richard Farnsworth in The Straight Story, Laura Dern in Inland Empire (!) and - most importantly - Naomi Watts in Mulholland Dr. (!!!)... Okay, so Nicolas Cage in Wild at Heart doesn't quite belong in that list, but that movie was really Diane Ladd's, anyway:

3) I know you are probably very busy with your paintings and music and meditation and coffee, but I really really hope you will soon find the big idea you need to make another great film, Dave!

Sunday, September 9, 2012

In a Tailspin

Soap is the answer.

Damsels in Distress on the whole wasn't quite my cup of tea, but it sure had its moments. In fact, the following three might be my favorite quotes #2 - #4 from anything since season 6 of 30 Rock ended in May:

"Humility comes from within. If it’s not there in the first place, where do you go to get it? I stopped looking a long time ago."
"I’ll be older, but also wiser. Or at least know more stuff. For me, that’s education!"
"I don’t like the term 'depressed'. I prefer to say that I’m in a tailspin."

 Quote #1, though, is undoubtedly from an episode of Girls which I got around watching in summer:

"You barely have the wherewithal to get to work at 10 AM, let alone sue somebody."

Replace "10 AM" with "noon" and you get the story of my life.

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Monica Vitti Is Everything

Maybe I should just shut this blog down and start a Fuck Yeah Monica Vitti Tumblr instead... Oh wait, it already exists.

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

"I must get this crack mended."

For about five minutes last week, I actually toyed around with this perverse idea that I should spend my first night alone in the new apartment rewatching Repulsion, but then realized I would have been just asking for trouble and watched it beforehand at home instead.

Poor Carol. She never got around to mending all those cracks, did she?

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Jenna Tells It Like It Is

"I can just be myself. Isn't that what love really is?"
"No! Love is hiding who you really are at all times, even when you're sleeping."
"Love is wearing makeup to bed, and going downstairs to the Burger King to poop, and hiding alcohol in perfume bottles. That's love."

I posted this already in December, but accidentally deleted it. Naturally, I had to repost it, because not only is it one of the best 30 Rock quotes ever (which is, you know, an achievement worthy of a Nobel Prize or something), but it's also a rare (the only?) moment when Jenna gets to impart real wisdom - such profound wisdom, in fact, that it makes me wonder if underneath all those delusions, she's secretly a genius.

Thursday, May 31, 2012

"I feel a real need to express something, but I don't know what it is I want to express. Or how to express it."
"Poor Joey. She has all the anguish and anxiety of the artistic personality without any of the talent."

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Pain in the Neck

Before last night, the only time I had seen The Exorcist was probably over a decade ago, when I wasn’t even in my teens, so a rewatch was needed. A few thoughts:

  • The exorcism scenes are actually by far the worst part of The Exorcist, with the religious mumbo-jumbo and over-the-top makeup (especially the tongue...?!). To quote French and Saunders, "Well, that's just one special effect too many, I'm afraid."
  • In other words: it's not your fault, Max von Sydow, but every scene your character is in sucks (c*cks in hell).
  • That being said, the 90 minutes in between are pretty great.
  • Spiderwalk! I had somehow totally forgotten about it.

As for my pick for the best shot(s)... I had to choose a moment from the hospital scene, because that's where the real horror happens:

The only way this could've possibly been more shudder-inducing is if they had stuck that thing in her eyeball instead.

Monday, April 16, 2012

Strangest Best Picture Snubs

I don’t like to use the word “snub” when talking about movie awards, but it only has one syllable and I wanted to keep the title short, so... Anyway. A recent rewatch of Thelma & Louise reminded me that it was oddly missing from Oscar’s Best Picture lineup, despite being nominated for Director, Leading Actress x 2, Editing and Cinematography and winning for Original Screenplay. Since I'm a chronic time waster, I browsed through 80+ Wikipedia pages and made a top five list of, well, what it says in the title. I took into account not just the number of nominations, but the categories in which they were received: nods for directing, writing and acting are a must, which is why films like The Dark Knight or The Poseidon Adventure didn't make the list.

First, honorable mentions to two films I’m fond of that just missed the top five (again!):

Interiors (1978), one of my favorite Woody Allen movies, and Silkwood (1983), one of those rare biopics that's actually pretty great.

And now, the ones that made the cut:

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

"How do I look?"

I wonder if anyone else has ever had the brilliant idea to watch Cries & Whispers and The Man with Two Brains the same night... And if so, how did he/she ever top that double feature? Because personally, I suspect the combination of Ingmar Bergman and "Anne Uumellmahaye" is unbeatable.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Laziest. Tagline. Ever.

"No one is safe"? Seriously? Not even Tilda Swinton, whose shield of awesomeness surely protects her against anything, including lame-ass Hollywood action films?

Also, I'm almost certain Denzel Washington has made that exact same movie about five years in a row by now. And even if he hasn't, it sure feels like he has, which is just as bad.

Monday, March 12, 2012

"He's just angry because I once took his bone."

2011 was dubbed the Year of the Dog in film, but while there did seem to be more dogs in high-profile movies than usual, standout canine peformances are definitely nothing new. Case in point:

Best Supporting Actor (and Palm Dog winner) 2003: "Moses" in Dogville

A great actor can make a lasting impression with only a few seconds onscreen.

Sunday, February 26, 2012

"Vanity and happiness are incompatible."

Glenn Close almost certainly won't win tonight (fortunately), but she should have won already 23 years ago:

Poster Hall of Fame: In the Loop

The tagline they chose goes well with the poster, but I still wish it had been "difficult difficult lemon difficult" instead.

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Poster Hall of Fame: Attenberg

I had never truly realized the awesomeness of shoulder blades until I saw this film.

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Poster + Tagline Hall of Fame: 1980 edition

"Empty Space" poster done right.

Also, I love the exclamation mark in Airplane! almost as much as the full stop in Adaptation..

And then there's this great... Just kidding.