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Showing posts with label Listmania. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Listmania. Show all posts

Friday, January 24, 2014

2013: Happy Young Beautiful Fire

The year has ended; corks have been popped; lists have been compiled, all singing out to you.

2013's Best Movie Songs, according to me:

1. Pharrell Williams - "Happy" (Despicable Me 2)
Because I'm . . . 

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

If Loving You Is Wrong, Well, I Don't Care. I Still Do. AKA Awesomely Bad

The world is a real horrorshow. And in times of feeling overwhelmed, I like to see movies that don't ask too much of me. My interest in film blossomed out of watching a lot of international/foreign-language cinema and drama. I watch a lot of films. 9 times out of 10 if the TV's on, it's tuned to a film. And the more films I see, the more I want to watch silly films, light films, charming films. The more I crave comedy. Counterbalance.

So, recently, I saw Beastly. Let me rephrase that. Recently, I paid money to see *Beastly*. The trailer looked like the gift of awful. I had hoped it would be a hilarious mini-mental vacation. And it was. *Beastly* was the sort of to-the-max all-around bad that mystifyingly passed every stage of production: from greenlighting to actual *theatrical* distribution. But that's one of the wonders of commerce. And somehow, ineptitude can be fun to watch. Like bumbling physical humor minus the physical.

In "honor" of my recent bad but funny encounter, I compiled a list of 10(ish) movies I love despite themselves. And I don't feel guilty about enjoying them.

Innocuous Awful, aka Bad But Fun1

1) National Treasure 1 & 2 - These were just on TV again recently. They are thin and borderline embarrassing. Even Harvey Keitel comes off as a cheeseball here. But it's a formula done with all the elements I can't help but enjoy: location-hopping mystery, puzzles and clues, unassuming cute sarcastic tech-geek straight man, flexible voice of reason scientist type, and hammy lead to amp up the camp factor. Nic Cage can be as over the top as he wants in these. It just makes them more fun to watch. These might be his only films of the last decade where I wish he'd turn it up even more.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

2010 Film Roundup: Best & Worst Viewed in 2010

Chronicling the highs and lows of the 300 films & series I watched over the last 13 months. All new to me (though not necessarily new).

Most Abysmal Viewing Experiences:
Most Annoying (Characters): Madeo (2009)
Most Embarrassingly Bad: Macgruber
Most Campily Bad (& Annoyingly Fake Accented/Overall Faux-->
     your movie-making is showing): Daybreakers
Most "Plain Bad": Legion
Most Insipid: Killers, Sorry, Thanks, G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra
Most Insubstantial: Sex and the City 2, Amelia
Most Uninspired: Videocracy
Most Ridiculous: The Spirit (2008), Eyewitness (1981)
Most "WHY?": Repo Men --> Best thing to come out of this viewing: This SONG:
     William Bell "Everyday Will Be Like A Holiday"
Most Nonsensical (Assemblage of Scenes): Bestia nel cuore [Don't Tell] (2005),
Death in Love (2008), Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus
Most Unwatchable: Lovely Bones (2009), My Dinner With Andre (1981),
The Killer Inside Me
... Special Mention: Antichrist (2009) (I've actually yet to finish it. It's been that hard to stick with. Many have told me if I ever want to enjoy sex with another human again, not to continue.)
Special Category: Jonah Hex -- It was bad, yes. But mostly, it was only half a movie. Or several different movies mashed together and still under feature-length run time. Either a massive amount of material was edited out or they didn't have enough to begin with. The screening I saw only hit the 70-minute mark thanks to 10 minutes of credits.

Most Memorable, Well Acted, Well Made &/or Cinematically Satisfying:
Winter's Bone -Just all around wonderful: acting, photography, tone, screenplay
The King's Speech -Quirky, nicely acted feel-good story. Rush was a gem.
The Social Network -Well made, sobering film
The Secret in Their Eyes (2009) -Touches that human-in-all-of-us note. Argentine cinema has been magnificent for several years now.
Crazy Heart (2009) -Actually saw this during 2009's voting rush & it just totally won me
A Single Man (2009) -Despite the end, beautifully lyrical
The White Ribbon (2009) -The film that makes me believe Haneke's finally reaching his potential and making whole films, not just fact/event presentations of sadists
Everlasting Moments (2008) -Quiet with an ethereal quality, touching on those human moments/needs
The Milk of Sorrow (2009) -There's almost nothing there, but it's executed beautifully. Lovely photography
Broken Embraces (2009) -Watching a filmmaker who is so clearly inspired by film is like watching passion on parade. Almodovar's sheer love of cinema is indelibly woven into this film. Only Tarantino rivals him in this respect. They know exactly what to do to get a desired result.

Lola Montès (1955) -Ophuls and his wonderful camera movements
The Good, the Bad and the Ugly (1966) -Leone, master of this genre
Forbidden Games (1952) -Crushing, real, and full of amazing child acting
The Prisoner (1967) -Despite some lulls & the end, incredible idea
Harakiri (1962) -Social dissent in the guise of ritual
Red Beard (1965) -Life lessons, though a bit meandering
The Warriors (1979) -A subtle odyssey. Tonally perfect. Restraint with an over-the-top theme. A film relevant then & now that I'm not sure could be made today
Bigger Than Life (1956) -Despite the third act. Great looming staging & photography
The Magician (1958) -I'm not sure I get the larger analogy of the artist from the film itself, but Bergman is a master of atmosphere and images from his films imprint in my mind. I can still see moments from this months later. That's remarkable.

Babies -Babies are universal. Pleasing presentation, beautifully photographed
Scott Pilgrim vs. The World -So clever and cleverly done
Me and Orson Welles -Complete and well acted
Io sono l'amore -Though not terribly satisfying, has something intangibly seductive
Mother and Child -I disagree with how it ends, but there are some really strong elements to this film, not the least of which is Naomi Watts.
+ 2009 special mentions: Gomorrah, Sin nombre, Fantastic Mr. Fox

Yes, only 8 of the "best" were actually from 2010.