Film Log, 2010
Submitted by neptune on Sat, 01/09/2010 - 07:31
- [Really Liked] The Hurt Locker (2009, Katherine Bigelow) The suspense was incredible, and the psychological aspect of this film was remarkably well played out. The performances were very convincing also.
- [Loved] Brick (2003, Rian Johnson) Completely over-stylized and unrealistic, not to mention awesome! I enjoyed this film on so many levels. Also, WTF on Sister Ray at the end!!?
- [Liked] Pi [REWATCH] (1998, Darren Aronofsky) Damn, Aronofsky is so much fun. Could easily be much shorter though, lots of wasted minutes.
- [Loved] Le Mépris (1963, Jean Luc-Godard) Amazing. Visually stunning, poetic, profound and it genuinely had something to say. It does a better job of studying the art of cinema (control, art, frustration) and art in general than Otto e mezzo does. I loved this film so much. One of my new favourites. And Lang is just a God.
- [Ok] Perfume: The Story of A Murderer (2006, Tom Twyker) Not especially great, but kept me interested mostly. I'd be interested to read the book. Although he's an anti-hero, I think we're meant to feel something for the protagonist, but I didn't. This meant that the ending had literally no impact whatsoever, and seemed utterly pointless. Cool concept to make something about the perfect scent on a medium which is almost wholly visual and cerebreal in nature. Really though, the best thing about this film was probably that Grenouille was played by the same guy as Pingu from Nathan Barley, which made it very hard to take him seriously.
- [Really Liked] The Beat That My Heart Skipped (2005, Jacques Audiard) Dunno about it being one of the best of the decade, but certainly highly enjoyable and at times emotionally affecting. It lacks genuine depth, though.
- [Loved] Juno (2007, Jason Reitman) Reitman continues to impress.
- [Liked] Up In The Air (2009, Jason Reitman) Better than Thankyou...
- [Loved] The Prestige (2006, Christopher Nolan) Awesome plot, with some quite beautifully presented themes of duality, obsession and morality.
- [Ok] The Road (2000, John Hillcoat) Very pretty, but its aestheticism was far superior to its development as a film.
- [Loved] Before Sunset (2004, Richard Linklater) Beautiful. Not a masterpiece, but I adored it.
- [Really Liked] The White Ribbon (2009, Michael Haneke) [Review to come soon, may need a rewatch]
- [No] Thankyou for Smoking (2005, Jason Reitman) Dull.
- [Loved] Children of Men [Rewatch] (2006, Alfonso Cuarón) Better than I remembered, the definitive sci-fi of its generation (one day I believe this will be viewed alongside Blade Runner, Solaris, 2001, Metropolis et cetera). I think one of the aspects that makes great sci-fi is an intense feel of realism despite its obviously fictitious and speculative view of the future. Children of Men does not disappoint in this department, presenting us with a dystopian future that is original enough we do not feel we're revisiting Orwell (Brazil tried that, with mixed success in my opinion) or looking at something too close to our society currently, but close enough that comparisons and an identification can be made. The density of the film is almost its most impressive feature, its highly religious (huge number of comparisons can be made with this and the birth of Jesus) and socially poignant story weave seamlessly with a thriller that keeps us fixated. The characters are not anything special, but Owen plays his cynical hero well, and it may well be Caine's best performance (normally I don't really like him). The combat sequences in this film are also fantastic, as good any pure war film, with the long takes and jumpy camera seeming more appropriate here than almost any other feature. I could go on but critical consensus will tell you just how good this film is. All this, and I didn't like Y Tu Mama Tambien one bit.
- [Liked] Fog Of War (2003, Errol Morris) Interesting and informative; for me it gave a whole new level of depth to a man that I'd only really had a one-sided view of. The editing was slick and effective, if we'd had to put up with all the potentional pauses of McNamara it may have taken three hours.
- [No] Fahrenheit 9/11 (2004, Michael Moore) The big lefty fatty returns with an overly emotive doc on the problems of the Bush administration. Perhaps this had more impact when it first came out, but I already knew most of what was in it and it feels like America (and the war in Iraq) has a whole set of problems that need addressing.
- [OK] The 25th Hour (2002, Spike Lee) Good, but could've done with more focus; I felt some of the supporting characters were a bit unnecessary. Cox and Norton were good, and Hoffman was decent too. This is trying to be some sortof essay on morality or culture or something, but it shouldn't have such a moral message (show and not tell).
- [Loved] 2046 (2004, Wong Kar-Wai) Sublime. Very few films manage to capture the beautiful cadence of poetry and the resplendant visual splendour of paintings; this does both. Staggering.
- [Really Liked] Magnolia (1999, Paul Thomas Anderson) The staggering imagery and soundtrack are so well placed and the story crafted so delicately by Anderson that the film's sentimental touch doesn't seem to affect its brilliance. The cast was excellent too, particularly Cruise, whose overly charismatic persona fit his role perfectly. I do feel that had the film been twenty minutes shorter it wouldn't have lost anything, but the ending incredibly well executed. I think that Anderson is one of the greatest directors of his generation, with this and There Will Be Blood being some of the finest examples of great modern cinema.
- [Liked] Punch-Drunk Love (2002, Paul Thomas Anderson) Excellent but not nearly as deep as I'd have liked it to be. Philip Seymour Hoffman was brilliant, and Sandler impressed me too.
- [Hated] Nine (2010, Rob Marshall) Awful. An insult to Fellini's original, I walked out I found it so tiresome and weak. Felt sorry for DDL.
- [Loved] Breathless [Rewatch] (1960, Jean Luc-Godard) The massive influence on Tarantino is obvious. The pace changes of this film are so much fun.