Movies seen in 2005

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  • 43) Rushmore: A...well, I'm renigging on my initial review of this movie: on this rewatch, I loved it. It's not perfect, there are a few acting flaws, but it's so damn good, glad I decided to watch it again.

  • 42) City Lights: A+...amazing, every time.

  • 41) Animal House: B-...I can apply this movie much better to my life (or what I've seen) now that I'm in college. The first time I watche the movie, I was still in high school, but now everything makes sense. Though, I still don't love it like many other people, but surely some great moments.

  • 40) Oldboy: B-...way strange, but you can't help but like it. I had to turn away a few times during the film due to (intended) gore. Uncontrollable film with a somber and redeeming ending.

  • 39) Three Colors: Red: A...loved it, near a perfect film. Not for many, but if you like quiet, quaint films, you ought to love this.

  • 38) Amadeus: A+...who doesn't love this film? It is a perfect movie.

  • 37) Blowup: B-...experimental to the very end, but some very good implemented ideas here.

  • 36) Life and Nothing But: B...don't remember too much (as it was a couple months ago I saw this) but I remember enjoying it fine.

  • 35) Wild Reeds: C-...long, boring, did not appeal to me at all.

  • 34) Lucie Aubrac: B...interesting, intriguing. Not too much to comment on, definitely good.

  • 33) EuroTrip: F...I knew I wasn't going to like this, but it was late-night and I didn't have the viewing attention span to go through with The Station Agent, though, it looks really good.

  • 32) Touch of Evil: A+...still love it, even though the version I watched wasn't the first one I saw and is not the version on the DVD. It's in my top 15.

  • 31) Million Dollar Baby: A...so for the first 20-30 minutes I thought to myself, 'How in the world did this win Best Picture? It's bad!' But then, as soon as
    Spoiler: Highlight to view
    Maggie Fitzgerald begins to "train" with Eastwood
    , I started liking it, minus two parts that followed: one early on -
    Spoiler: Highlight to view
    when Maggie is told to shift her weight on feet and we see her serving guests at a restaurant, then the camera pans down to see her doing this at her job - and one later - when Morgan Freeman gets into the ring after Danger gets beat up, and in turn beats up the boxer who fought Danger and says "110."
    Also, I had no idea the direction the movie was headed, but loved how it played out,
    Spoiler: Highlight to view
    with Maggie being hospitalized for what seems to be the second half of the film. I don't love what happened to her, but I was predicting the movie to go a certain way, and loved it because a) it didn't go that way; and b) the path it took was involved, heartfelt and completely different than my assumption
    . Great stuff, surely deserving of it's Oscars.

  • 30) Harold and Kumar Go to White Castle: A-...still uncontrollably funny, great stuff, especially the chitah ride.

  • 29) Salvador: B...engrossing earlier film from Oliver Stone. Not too much to comment on here, but definitely good at times, quite a few of them.

  • 28) Jules and Jim: C...another film that, sadly, I couldn't wait to be over with. I didn't find it interesting at all, though I noted some bits that Tarantino used in Pulp Fiction, such as one time when either Jules or Jim are in a cafe and they say, "Garçon, more coffee, please." You can see where Tarantion put that in his '94 film.

  • 27) Moon Over Parador: D...completely predictable smut with very simple humor I didn't find funny but that the audience I was in, did.

  • 26) Apocalypse Now: A...geez, what a film! Rewatch for my Elements of Film class, I love this movie, it gets better every viewing.

  • 25) Cleo from 5 to 7: A-...really cool and different French New Wave than Godard and Truffaut. I took some notes on the film but seem to have misplaced them, but all in - very enjoyable.

  • 24) Hotel Rwanda: A...depressing story made better by a hotel manager in a story similar to that of Oscar Schindler. Paul Rusesabagina is very well portrayed by Don Cheadle and the rest of the cast is great as well. I could get started on the ideas and violence of humanity, but if you go see this movie, I think you'll feel the same way I do, at least similar. Truly worthy of its Oscar nominations.

  • 23) Boogeyman: D...what can come with a film that can't wrap itself up in the end? This film made itself cliché during its "scary" moments, it bathed in formulaic idiocy. Damn that preview that suckered me in. I thought the premise sounded flat, but then a preview was cut that actually made me want to see this. Surprised? I was, and then I wasn't, when does a preview really make me want to see a movie? When watching, you just know exactly what's going to happen once the sound fades out in any scene - BAM! Loud noise then quick and flashy (in the bright and blinding sense, not something hip) jump cuts to make the audience leap with fear. Then they have the gall to make the
    Spoiler: Highlight to view
    boogeyman CG. Just for the sake of anyone who cares, I put this in spoiler tags.
    The end...of this dreck.

  • 22) The Barbarian Invasions: C-...how this was even nominated for an Academy Award is beyond me. I didn't care for anything or anyone in the film at all. The editing was extremely sloppy, boring and annoying. Example: for every beginning of a scene, they faded in from black and every scene, they faded out, even on the most disjointed of scenes (which had nothing to do with the main storyline and therefor, rendered unnecessary). And why use B-movie horror music for this film? It's not the feeling they were looking for (and I just couldn't wait for Jason from Friday the 13th to come out from behind a bush and attack them).

  • 21) Treasure of the Sierra Madre: A...truly great a second time around (but not for a few years, so it was good to watch again). Bogey and the rest of the cast are fantastic and the story is quite compelling yet simple which works out perfectly for the film.

  • 20) Breathless (À bout du souffle): B...while I don't love the Godard films I've seen, I certainly like them and the style in which they are done. This doesn't have the touching and purely cinematic moments as Bande a part (Band of Outsiders) does, but it's the antithesis to Hollywood gangster pictures of the mid 20th century. Watching the film feels like we are watching actual people act out ideas they've seen in films before (not ironic though, as much of the movie, or all of it, was improvised). Some classic and truly brilliant moments here in the film, but just a bit too existential.

  • 19) Vertigo: A-...I don't know why I was so confused when I saw this a few years ago (as a younger teen) but this time, everything was much clearer. Hitchcock is amazing, but I felt the very end needed a bit more substance, not explanation, though; it just quickly cuts to the Paramount end title when I think it needed a bit more. Otherwise stunning.

  • 18) The Battle of Algeirs: A-...incredible direction and editing, especially for their time and quite a few years ahead of their time. The opening scene (right after the very first scene with the man being questioned) is intense with documentary-style footage (thuogh every foot of film for the movie is original, no news or miscellaneous footage here) and sharp editing techniques used in more movies nowadays, rare for its time. Very intriguing story with chaotic pace rampant through it's scenes akin to the life of the characters.

  • 17) Children of Paradise: A+...without a doubt: a perfect film. Charming characters portrayed wonderfully by their respective actors (especially Arletty), fine direction and a masterful script are the highlights of the film. I loved everything about it, but don't have much to say about it, though.

  • 16) Gone with the Wind: D...hated it, not without reason though. First, I'll say that I really didn't care what happened to any of the characters except for Rhett and Melanie, the only true redeeming characters.
    Spoiler: Highlight to view
    And what happened to Melanie made no sense to me: Scarlett and Rhett's daughter died, Melanie fainted after she found out and then died shortly after. Was there something I missed in the film that led up to that, or did they just throw her life away for emotion? Nothing built up to her dying, just a sorry screenplay.
    Sheesh this movie was rediculous, even if you can get past the awful pacing - in one moment, we have something that should be touching, but then it shuffles off quickly with a bad transition to a quickly (and poorly) edited scene. The time cutting was horrible as well: they cut months (in the film's story) at a time and did not even leave us with a transition to recover from the jump cut. Not only is the film poorly edited, but so is the audio: where it should comfortably fade out as another track is fading in, it harshly cuts. And now it's time to get started on the direction: apart from the fact that the film had 3 main directors, none of them did a lick of good for the film. For example: we'll have a character come into frame in a wideshot, talk with someone else in the frame, one character will exit the frame, the camera will dolly up to the other character that's left, they will say some little line or give a type of look, then walk out of frame or the scene will fade out. It's sloppy, it's annoying, and it happened on more than one occasion which angered me in a way only a film that uses this type of direction can. And the 180 degree rule was broken a number of times. Let's move on to factual errors: when Scarlett is praying in Tara and it is dark in the room except for one light at her front, the large shadow on the back wall, with the way she and Melanie are sitting, is at an impossible angle in reference to the light, it could never be like how it is. The script and actors play out uncomfortably: instead of actually listening to the other actors and responding, they just prepare for the time when they should read their line. Also, we never saw Scarlett give a damn about her daughter until Bonnie came back from England, where emotion was forced through her to actually care. On one lighter note (the only one that had anything to do with me liking any part in the film) is Clark Gable who David Selznik begged to take on the role. Luckily, for me at least, he did. Gable is charming and great and my only complaint about him is that he scrunches his face into his familiar way for every scene he's in (probably at the director's request). People talk and talk about all the technicalities that went into making this film and that happened during, they say that so that they can build the film up, but in the end, there's nothing there. Are they trying to protect it? Sure, but all those elements to do jack unless they're utilized well. A film on a low budget could be amazing and better than this film (and I've seen a few that are), if everything played out well, unlike how it does here. This film is just a few memorable lines and the redeeming ending which came about 4 hours too late.

  • 15) Collateral: A...I really enjoyed this film. I had wanted to go see it in the theaters, but as with many movies, never made it there. But everything worked extremely well here (except Pinkett Smith's acting, which I never really like anyway, but even she's not that bad in this). Some parts were close to terrifying, the screenwriter did a fabulous job working the characters and story. I never felt like it was going to pull a twist and it never did. Throughly satisfying.

  • 14) Metropolis: B...I enjoyed this film much more this second time around. Maybe I wasn't in a good mind set the first time, maybe it was the classical tracks played to the film insted of the soundtrack, maybe it was that the film was either way over-exposed or under-exposed. Whatever it was, I really enjoyed it.

  • 13) City Lights: A+...gosh, I forgot how great this film is, it's been a couple of years since I've seen it. Brilliant acting/direction/writing/composing/everything as always with Chaplin. Even got a bit watery in the eyes at the end.

  • 12) Finding Neverland: C-...this really didn't work for me, I saw through the cliches and hokey inspirations portrayed on screen. If that's how it happened (which they say it is), that's fine and I know a lot of people enjoyed the movie, I've read the reviews, but I was not captured by this film at all, too bad for me, I guess.

  • 11) Hero: A...this time around, I loved it. Where the first time it felt empty to me, it is now busting with heart which was beautifully portrayed. In some parts the pacing drags a bit, but it is so incredibly enjoyable that it doesn't really matter.

  • 10) The Machinist: B...I was in total suspense for 2/3 of the movie up until
    Spoiler: Highlight to view
    the point where I felt there was no threat (of the dying kind) to the main character.
    I was trying to figure out who Ivan is and why strange things keep happening to Bale's character.
    Spoiler: Highlight to view
    I also felt the end, while good, was somewhat anticlimactical, which wasn't bad, but I wanted something more.
    Still, all in, this movie was put together very well bordering boredom occassionally with some minor dragging. This is a movie that's made for the ending. You know the type: The Sixth Sense, etc. Those movies that if you watched 15 minutes of the film you would need to finish it off right then to get to the meat of it all.

  • 9) Harold and Kumar go to White Castle: A-...I absolutely loved it. It's not got great direction or cinematography or any technical aspect, really, but the humor was so good that I fell for this film (and I was not, nor am ever under the influence while watching). The cheetah run - brilliant, the pot bag relationship - hilarious. I will be purchasing this shortly.

  • 8) Confessions of a Teenage Drama Queen: D+...trite crap with poor excuses for acting, writing and pretty much every thing else. My friends wouldn't let me put on Harold and Kumar Go To White Castle until this dreck finished.

  • 7) The Player: B+...as the film started out, it really felt like it was headed in the direction of other films that are full of themselves (in this case: Robbins says he went to see The Bicycle Theif and everyone comments on what a great movie it is: I've not seen the movie, but when characters in a movie talk about a classic, it seems that the writer wants the audience to think he knows his stuff by having his characters talk about classic cinema, this may not be how it really is with him, but that's what it feels like), but the film turned right around and I lost the feelings I had before the meat of the film came through. And then I enjoyed it...quite a bit. I'm not sure I fully understand the ending but I have some ideas. Very good direction by Altman and acting from pretty much everyone, especially Robbins.

  • 6) Maria Full of Grace: A-...
    Spoiler: Highlight to view
    apparently, drugs tear friends apart even when they're not taking them. This film seems like it very accurately portrays a drug smuggle and it's absolutely frightening. I was nervous and tense as hell when customs pulled Maria aside. I was also a bit nervous through the rest until Carmen finally found out her sister was dead.
    Extremely well portrayed and very well done with superb acting. The only complaint is that it's a bit shaky and threw my senses off a few times...but maybe that was done on purpose...

  • 5) Day for Night: B...I'm very surprised that the character Truffaut played didn't lose it while filming. As an aspiring filmmaker, it's good to see that not everything goes perfectly with funded productions. I also felt this while watching the fantastic hour behind the scenes special on The Phantom Menace DVD.

  • 4) Danton: B...the film has a very interesting beginning with a haunting score but then it slows way down. The film at least remains somewhat interesting throughout the film, but at 138 minutes, I felt that it's too long.

  • 3) The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou: C-...honestly, I was not expecting anything for this film, but I was completely let down (minus all the music and the last 5 minutes of the film). I can probably understand if people do like this film (just like how I love The Royal Tenenbaums and can understand why people wouldn't like it), but nothing caught me. And I didn't even think that the direction and editing were very good. It's too bad, I won't be seeing this one again.

  • 2) Dodgeball: a true underdog story: D-...absolutely awful, it's my fortune to start the new year with two terrible movies. This movie is unbelievably and horribly predictable. It's stupid to no end and I absolutely hated, hated, hated it.

  • 1) The Erotic Adventures of the Invisible Man: F...my roommates and I thought this sounded humourously interesting, to our demise, it was neither. It sucked...a lot. And they (they who probably did everything for the movie minus "acting") had the nerve to use the font Comic Sans for the titles (possibly the worst and unfortunately most widely used fonts). If you decide to watch this dreck, try to not laugh when one of the characters tries to pretend there's an invisble man they're holding.

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Red indicates latest seen films.

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Re: Jules and Jim

Have you seen another French New Wave staple, My Life to Live (a.k.a Vivre Sa Vie), directed by Jean-Luc Godard? My film professor pointed out the other day how one scene with the lead actress dancing was lifted right out of that film and into Pulp Fiction. Uma's wig looks exactly like Anna Karina's hair too!

I thought the dancing scene came out of Bande A Part (Band of Outsiders) also by Godard. Well...he may have more than one dancing scene in his movies. I haven't seen My Life to Live, yet, but there are a lot of other connections from Tarantino to French New Wave. Bande A Part, he said, was his favorite film, hence his production company name A Band Apart. There are many other little things to catch and relate to Pulp Fiction in Godard and Truffaut's works as well as other French New Waves. I've only seen a couple and already noted a number of references, I wonder what's hidden in the rest.