June 2017 Viewing Log

  1. The Crazies (10, B): Tight as a drum, dialing every set piece perfectly, utterly thrilling & scary even if we’ve seen this blueprint before. – 06/01/17
  2. The Help (11, C+): Engaging for its length, but baggy. Structure alone speaks to iffy politics. But Viola Davis holds up like a steel tower. – 06/01/17 (rewatch) (review)
  3. Enough Said (13, B-): Lovely ideas and dynamics somewhat hampered once the full conceit reveals itself. Thank God Gandolfini saves Albert. – 06/03/17 (review)
  4. The Godfather Pt. II (74, B+): So many glories, such powerful, epic ambitions on all fronts, but stumbles a bit for all its glories. – 06/03/17
  5. The Godfather (72, A): No real tweet.
    1. My Dad and I saw The Godfather in the front row in easy chairs and seeing something so epic only two feet from the screen was so perfect – 06/04/17
  6. I’m Not There (07, A): I understand prismatic as a term now. So virtuosic! To paraphrase many great men: “Look at all these Dylans!” – 06/05/17
    1. I learned so much more about Dylan that Thatcher, Belfort, Liz II. And you know where he says he was?
    2. (talking to someone else) I can’t wait to rewatch it. Now that I’ve spent two hours in awe I’ll spend the next two studying it more.
  7. Carnival of Souls (62, B): Low budget, bare-bones plot feels like it could collapse at any moment but this is bizarre, spooky, interesting work. – 06/06/17
  8. The Mourning Forest (07, B): Maybe too into its photography, none too exciting. But it’s tough at its center. I look forward to a rewatch. – 06/06/17
  9. The Edge of Heaven (08, B+): Exciting, unpredictable trajectory with rich rewards. So finely attuned to the emotions of its characters. – 06/07/17
  10. Wonder Woman (17, C): A lot of ways as a film it could’ve been better made. But as an experience it was exciting, and so goddamn important. – 06/08/17
    1. Definitely has some problems in the moment. But my sister cried three times, and its connecting with so many people in a way that matters.
  11. Zodiac (07, B): Triumph of structure and theme, abetted and inhibited by Fincher’s direction. Sets, photography, Lynch pretty swell too. – 06/09/17
  12. Sophie’s Choice (82, D+): So brazen in its appropriation of the Holocaust, and of Sophie, in some Southern babe’s coming-of-age story. – 06/10/17
    1. Streep’s miraculous, but she can’t escape how nasty the film’s structure is to her, and there’s no picture to support this character.
    2. This should have been told from Sophie’s POV, not Stingo’s. That alone would’ve done wonders for this film.
  13. Zootopia (16, B): No tweet.
  14. Jane Eyre (11, B): Again, no tweet.
  15. Capote (05, A-): Cold yet deeply personal, like a gunshot to the head. Evokes real crises of character. Performed, directed to a T. – 6/11/17
  16. It Comes At Night (17, B): Weak jump scares give way to a truly paranoid, scary chamber set-up. Between this and Alien who wastes Ejogo more? – 6/11/17 (review)
  17. The Hurt Locker (09, A): Terrifying, textures every scene and every character so adroitly. So technically prodigious. Bigelow a genius. – 06/12/17
  18. The Grapes of Wrath (40, A-): Filmmaking as sturdy as the Joads. Genuienly timely tale of the working class that honors a doozy of a novel. – 06/13/17
  19. The Bridges of Madison County (95, A): Maturely observes its characters, how they experience their loves, how they judge their lives. – 06/14/17
    1. Two romantic triumphs for Eastwood that seem so outside his usual oeuvre. With every new Streep performance I’m almost crying. She’s perfect.
  20. Magic Mike XXL (15, B): The Odyssey, but with strippers, and a more lackadaisical tone. Cast, changing rhythms hold it together. – 06/15/17
  21. Dark Victory (39, A-): Richly full of feeling, somehow dodging easy sentimentality towards a supremely likable lead, fully realized by Davis. – 06/16/17
  22. Walk the Line (05, C): Baseline quality to high to call rote, but never is it very special. Amazingly, unhelpfully slow and stodgy. – 06/16/17 (review)
  23. Lake Placid: The Final Chapter (12, –): No real tweet, but guys. This was great to watch at 1AM. – 06/18/17
    1. I’ve been thinking a lot about Elisabeth Röhm’s killer work in Joy but that doesn’t explain why I’m semi-enamored with her Lake Placid perf rn
  24. Double Indemnity (44, A-): Crackerjack plotting, slickly realized by Wilder, gorgeously photographed. Inimitable cast. Richly scored. -06/19/17
  25. Red Hook Summer (12, B-): Thematically and emotionally complicated. Filmmaking, story, kids falter frequently. Peters never strays. – 06/19/17
  26. Hyenas (92, A): As absurd & darkly hilarious as many tragedies can be. Magnificently adapted in itself, to West Africa, to African cinema. – 06/20/17
  27. Julieta (16, B): Definite case of not walking in with the right mood, but I still appreciate plenty. Just one I know’ll do better on rewatch. – 06/20/17
    1.  The core feels more elusive here than in other Almodóvars, and of course I appreciated it visually. Leads felt like they weren’t adding much.
  28. Female Perversions (97, B+/A-): Characters and concepts come to startling life. Deliciously specific, neurotically and visually captivating. – 06/20/17
  29. The Letter (40, A): Never slows down from the first six shots. Davis and Wyler do psychologically, emotionally rich justice to a lurid tale. – 06/21/17 (review)
  30. Young Adult (11, C): Prickly ideas. Cody barely has consistent characters. Reitman barely shapes it. Theron, Oswalt still get somewhere. 06/22/17
  31. Hope Springs (12, B): Filmmaking ain’t much, but who cares when the result is so earnest invested in its characters, and at their age. – 06/22/17
    1. How lovely to watch for Meryl’s birthday, but equally fitting for Tommy and Steve. How lovely in general.
  32. Blue Valentine (10, A): What would Dean and Cindy have to say to Kay and Arnold? What do they have left to say to each other? – 06/22/17
    1. So adroitly textured, in the past and the present, for the couple and each partner. Wedding bells cross-cut with marital funeral rites.
  33. 127 Hours (10, C): Like Steve Jobs, stylistically out of sync with its lead and their story. Compelling, but I took a while to start caring. – 06/23/17
  34. The Omen (76, B): Not all its tricks survive without a laugh, but for the most part this doomed lurch towards biblical tragedy holds up. – 06/24/17
    1. I’m taking back the number of the beast/cuz six is not a pretty number/eight or three are definitely better
  35. Barefoot in the Park (67, C-): So underdone most lines DOA. Useless camera. Redford, Natwick too droll. Fonda too serious. Least Boyer’s fun. – 06/25/17
    1. I canme about 20 minutes late to the broadcast. But lord even when the film was playing I felt I wasn’t missing much.
  36. Metropolis (27, A): Endlessly fascinating realization of revolutionary acts, cinematically and politically. Relevant in best and worst ways. – 06/25/17
  37. Macbeth (15, B): Haunted by actions its character have and have yet to take. Smart choices, vividly realized, by Lord and Lady especially. – 06/26/17
  38. Could Atlas (12, C): Ambitious, fine, and accomplished in many ways. Yet why am I so underwhelmed? Six stories end in three places. – 06/26/17
    1. Maybe because every take I find online is so one way or the other I can’t get much out of them. I can’t grasp it and no one’s helping.
  39. Maps to the Stars (15, C+): Not sure how well Cronenberg’s style fits Wagner’s scripts. Not sure about much beyond Moore(!!), honestly. 06/27/17
  40. Damsels in Distress (12, B+): I know people like this. Delightfully absurd, kind to the characters it skewers. Sambolas across a tightrope. – 06/28/17
  41. Night of the Iguana (64, C): Coulda used more guts, especially in coloring its sexualities. Gardner a blast. Burton, Hall, camera intrigue. – 06/30/17
  42. Okja (17, B+): Poignantly zany, doing that societal satire thing way better than Snowpiercer. Almost feels child-friendly. Hug the pig. – 06/30/17

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