09/30/10 Kick-Ass (Matthew Vaughn; 2010; DVD)
Watching this on DVD was much more enjoyable than watching it in the theatre. Perhaps it was the absence of expectation combined with the not-as-bad-as-I-remembered-it factor. But the fact that I even wanted to watch it again, I guess, means there was something positive about my first viewing.
09/27/10 The Shooting (Monte Hellman; 1967; DOC Films)
For years now, I have been watching the VCI home edition DVD of this film. This past week I had the opportunity to watch Monte Hellman’s own personal print lent to DOC Films at the University of Chicago, which only helped confirm that I absolutely love this movie. Oates plays the lead role so well. His motives are always suspect. Why is he guiding Millie Perkins and Jack Nicholson through the desert? Does he think he can stop them if he goes along? One thing I love about this movie is that, in spite of how cynical I feel I’ve become, with
The Shooting, I am not embarrassed to ask, “What does it mean?” What is the subtext, the allegory? The significance of the mirror-like ending?
09/27/10 Ride in the Whirlwind (Monte Hellman; 1965; DOC Films)
This played just before
The Shooting on a degraded 16mm print with a strong red hue. The latter half of the movie improved but was still scratchy and slightly red. This one begs a lot of ethical questions, which I think distinguishes it from more classical westerns. I see the Cameron Mitchell character as a version of a character Randolph Scott would have played in a Boetticher film, but less absolute.
09/26/10 Landscape in the Mist (Theodoros Angelopoulos; 1988; DVD)
Amazing film with great use of wide shots and a few long takes. The landscapes are expressive and desolate in a way that places Angelopoulos alongside Tarkovsky and Tarr.
09/25/10 Landscape in the Mist (Theodoros Angelopoulos; 1988; DVD)
Yes. I watched this two days in a row.
09/24/10 Quietly on By (Frank V. Ross; 2005; DVD)
I believe this was my first time seeing Ogden Avenue in a movie. I really liked this movie. The filmmaker(s) were keenly aware of the limits in whcih the character would remain sympathetic and he/they really pushed those limits; and after that final scene, you really do want to wish the best for him.
09/24/10 Mysterious Object at Noon (Apichatpong Weerasethakul; 2000; DVD)
“I attended the world premiere of [Mysterious Objects at Noon] at the Rotterdam festival two years ago, and I remember wondering how long it would take to reach Chicago–if it ever got here. The film made a strong impression on me, but I forgot many details, simply because I didn’t have an analytical context in which to place it. Perhaps if the film had been less original or striking, I and other publicists, journalists, and teachers could have started packaging it immediately.” (from http://www.jonathanrosenbaum.com/?p=6243)
Reading this was a sort of revelation to me. I watched this twice in a week. The first time watching it, I would watch for 15 or 20 minutes and then have to rewind and watch those same 15 or 20 minutes again. By the time I was finishing it for the first time, I had almost watched it three times. I think it’s this lacking in “analytical context” that prevents meaningful retention. Watching it the second time was immensely easier. But I have had similar experiences with Diamonds of the Night, Pearls of the Deep, and even something like Tarkovsky’s The Mirror.
09/22/10 Catfish (Henry Joost and Ariel Schulman; 2010; AMC River East 21)
I have already written on this fun documentary.
09/21/10 Dogtooth (Giorgos Lanthimos; 2009; DVD)
I plan on writing at this in depth as it is now on my top 10 list for the year.
09/19/10 Mysterious Object at Noon (Apichatpong Weerasethakul; 2000; DVD)
09/18/10 The Mechanic (Michael Winner; 1972; DVD)
A lot of fun.
09/17/10 The Town (Ben Affleck; 2010; Regal Cantera 30)
Ty Burr said it best: it “traffics in clichés but keeps the traffic moving.”
09/13/10 Breathless (Jean-Luc Godard; 1960; Classic Cinemas Tivoli)
I have never loved this movie, but seeing the 50th anniversary print from the front row was a really fun experience. Seeing it in full-scale projection really does help emphasize some of the choppiness.
09/12/10 A Matter of Life and Death (Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger; 1946; DVD)
This is a reallly strange movie. It’s kind of mess, but I kind of love it. The more I see it (and listen to it since I made a mp3 of it for my iPod), the more I love it and also the more cohesive it actually feels, that is I can see how its cosmological interests align with the love story, but I am still working out the end when they get in to the various nationalisms and debates over whether America or Britain most rightfully earned the scorn of the rest of the world.
09/11/10 Leap Year (Anand Tucker; 2010; DVD)
Speaking of Powell and Pressburger, this movie loosely based on
I Know Where I’m Going, isn’t terrible.
09/07/10 Wall Street (Oliver Stone; 1987; Netflix)
First time watching this.
09/07/10 A Town Called Panic (Stéphane Aubier and Vincent Patar; 2009; Netflix)
Audrey loved this movie, and I just laughed a lot.
09/06/10 Red Riding: In the Year of Our Lord 1983 (Anand Tucker; 2009; Netflix)
09/05/10 Red Riding: In the Year of Our Lord 1980 (James Marsh; 2009; Netflix)
09/05/10 Red Riding: In the Year of Our Lord 1974 (Julian Jarrold; 2009; Netflix)
09/04/10 The Girlfriend Experience (Steven Soderbergh; 2009; Netflix)
09/03/10 The True Story of Jesse James (Nicholas Ray; 1957; DVD)
09/02/10 Street of No Return (Samuel Fuller; 1989; DVD)
Highly recommend, but only partially joking.
09/01/10 The American (Anton Corbijn; 2010; Regal Cantera 30)
Ideally I would like to write more about this film in the near future.