If you want the gravy…

…You've got to get the biscuits!

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My Top 20 Films of the Decade: v. 0.0


Talking to a friend of mine the other day, we found ourselves musing over what the best films of the decade were. He had his own ideas, and I had at least three which immediately came to mind, which led me to say, off-handedly, that I should compile a list of the decade’s best at some future point. But the idea stuck with me, as ideas do, and I soon began drawing up a longlist from which a more definitive list could be derived.

Of course, I say “more definitive” and not “definitive.” There are still films I haven’t seen, films I need to see again, films I may have ranked too low – or too high – for reasons that had nothing to do with them and everything to do with me, or films which I dropped from the longlist, itself an imperfect document, for questionable reasons.

Hence I call this list the “Version 0.0” of this list – there may well be, in a year’s time, an “0.1” or “0.5” before, sometime in 2020, I make a serious attempt at a definitive list. But I hope that this embryonic effort is not wholly off-base; I hope that, even if you don’t consider these the very best films of the decade, you can understand why I am putting them forth as some combination of the decade’s best and most definitive films.

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2016 Rising, Actus Tertius: Reflections

It’s time to close the door on 2015. Past time, even. But I wanted to round off this awards season, as patchy as my coverage of it may have been, with a poll (seen above), some statistical fun, and some reflection on my awards past.

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25 Overrated Films


Or, “Time to Piss Off a Lot of People”.

Just as there are a great many films I think are underrated (here’s a list of 100 of them), so there are quite a few films I think are praised beyond their actual worth. I will only cite 25 films at present, for the following reasons:
– 1. Many of the films I consider overrated are recent releases which may find their proper level of obscurity in due time.
– 2. A lot of films I consider overpraised I have yet to give a second chance to, and in many of those cases (especially films I saw when I was fairly young), I have left them off the list.
– 3. The criteria for determining a truly overrated film is actually quite strict. For each film I’ll offer an explanation as to why I consider it so overrated.
– 4. There’s a lot of canonical cinema I still need to see/rewatch, so I can’t yet make a definitive listing of what I consider overrated.

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Maybe not the BEST action movie, but perhaps the MOST action movie.

This’ll be a quick one. I’ll be seeing The Raid 2 tomorrow, so I watched this to prepare myself (though, given the relative lack of plot or character development, I could probably have enjoyed without seeing this). Definitely I’ll want to watch this again at some point, but suffice to say, if you’re at all interested in this and haven’t seen it–see it. I can’t imagine, knowing what to expect, that many would be disappointed by The Raid: Redemption. It delivers on its promises and then some. It’s not quite a masterpiece, but it’s frequently very impressive.

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LOVE Review – ***

I’m not totally sure what this was, but I enjoyed watching it.

Some films resist my attempts to write about them. Wax, or the Discovery of Television Among the Bees, for example…I would have no idea where to begin with that one (though I’ll try sometime, because that movie is fascinating). Love, while not as inscrutable as Wax, is nonetheless an obscure and dense work, one that not only avoids answers but also doesn’t bother itself too much with questions. One could, not unreasonably, dismiss the film as a pretentious mess–and yet, throughout its 85 minutes, I was thoroughly compelled by it, and if the story is more than a little murky, William Eubank (who wrote, directed, designed the sets, and shot the film) is a fine craftsman, and Gunner Wright, who bears the film almost entirely on his shoulders, gives a fine performance. All told, for a film produced by a band–a supergroup called Angels & Airwaves–it’s pretty decent.

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My 1st Annual Film Awards (2011)

I was inspired to start giving out film awards by two major factors:

  • The excellent Nighthawk Awards given out by Erik Beck at nighthawknews.wordpress.com, and
  • My reaction to the film Melancholia, which I instantly felt to be the best film of its year and one that should have a great many Oscar nominations. That it didn’t is a subject for another discussion.

There I sat in a motel room in Chicago, still dazed by the film, pondering what awards I would give to it, and then, as I began to write them down, I thought back over the year and considered what I’d really liked, what I thought was especially accomplished in which category, etc…and so the Awards were born. I haven’t updated them significantly since I saw Once Upon a Time in Anatolia, and will at some point go back, re-review the old and introduce myself to the new, and see what changes should be made, if any. In any case, here we are:

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