This is the first film post on this blog. Just in case you were wondering why there was a Movie in my blog name.
First, a story of how that came to be, which I believe I haven’t told yet: In the earlier days of computers, many fonts used to have problems with the Slovenian letter “č” (pronounced “ch”), so much so that when copying files to the new hard drive, for example, all files with a filename that included a “č” were simply ignored and weren’t copied.
My surname has a “č” right there at the end: Maksimovič. When I typed it into various forms, I often noticed that “č” got replaced with an “è”. And there you have it: Maksimoviè or Maksi Movie. (Maksi became Mexi because this is my nickname which I inherited from my father – his is actually Meksi.)
Lately I haven’t been watching as many movies as before. I guess I run in cycles like that. Here are four flash film review posts from my previous blog. Not bad if I say so myself. 😀
Right now I’m in the middle of The Brave, the first film Johnny Depp directed a while ago with him and Marlon Brando, and I’m watching it dubbed in Italian since Amazon Prime doesn’t offer it in any other way. (We finally got it only now. Amore said: “They made me.”) And I just had an epiphany:
There are SO many films out there. I could be watching EVERYTHING else right now but I’m watching this. You could be doing everything else but you’re reading this. And I could be everywhere else but I’m in the corner of Tuscany not many find. And it’s good this way.
If you live with open channels, unblocked mind, wide eyes and healthy appetite, there is a good chance that everything will keep turning out just right.
Here are the films and the first few series that I have ever binge-watched, the crop of the last five months. The number implies what a film made me feel:
- 1: pissed off
- 2: sick or meh
- 3: more or less disappointed
- 4: well worth my time
- 5: greatly rewarded.
Within one category films are lined up from the worst at the top to the best down below.
The *star next to the title means that I found it on the Top 40 Sci-Fi Movies of the 21st Century.
*Serenity: I don’t know the series, okay? I thought Firefly were those vampires. After I learned to tolerate the way they talked, which took some will power, I realised this was not going to land anywhere I’d wish to be.
The ABCs of Death: Pfff. How many ways to die do you need? As if you will do it more than once.
The Smell of Us: Mr. Larry Clark will lose the “Mr.” bit if this goes on. Just as Spacey did.
Fifty Shades of Grey: We chose to watch this as a humanity study. A signature of the contract would imply that he could do all kinds of horrors with her. She doesn’t sign and he does it nevertheless.
Paprika: A reminder why I don’t watch Japanese cartoons. I dosed off three times. Was really tired though.
A Quiet Passion: I did study English literature but this was a harder test of how to stay put. The transfer in time doesn’t quite work. Maybe they should make Ms. Dickinson modern. And let her enter politics.
Gone Girl: I wanted to see this one for so long that I forgot why. Nobody told me Mr. Affleck was in it. I liked Ms. Pike’s acting but I’d prefer she could stay at home at the days of the shoot.
Wristcutters: A Love Story: The disappointment was only due to the fact that I forgot I’d seen it before at a festival. Quite cute, for a bunch of dead people.
Zootopia: I watched it the next day again with amore (why?). It’s all fine and dandy and inclusive and all but it still drags and she is just too eager.
Kedi: If you want to make a documentary about cats in Istanbul, there are a million ways of doing it. I just thought the potential was not fully realised. Still quite lovely.
Spring: A surprising horror film that could be happening just around the corner if it weren’t for such a far-fetched story. I liked the setting and the people. Of course, it’s Italy.
Happy End (2017): Oh, Mr. Haneke. I understand that you’re getting old but do we have to watch? Also, I didn’t have the translation of the sexting bits in French. I feel that I’ve missed out on the best part.
Smetto quando voglio (I Can Quit Whenever I Want): A bitter Italian satire on how to get rich making drugs. Is everybody doing it now?
The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (USA): I didn’t see the Swedish one (why?). I did read all the three books though. It had an impact. I liked Ms. Mara’s acting very much. The totality is not groundbreaking but it moves along nicely.
Star Wars: The Last Jedi: I just had to see it. Now I realise it’s too high on this list. Ah well. I think it’s Mr. Hamill. I will always love him.
Black Snake Moan: I watched it yesterday and didn’t recognise Ms. Ricci. Whoooa! Nice tunes too, Mr. Samuel. As for the story – I can see it happening for real but I seriously doubt there would be any chance for such a cutesy ending. I prefer it though. Some hope, at least.
Spielberg: A satisfying documentary but it doesn’t linger. It made me watch Munich though.
*Sunshine: It’s been a while since I saw it. I forgot the cast and all but I remember, aaaah, light in my eyes, and some groundbreaking film-making. Of course, it’s Mr. Danny Boyle. See if for yourself.
*Looper: Yeah, I can see a bit of a problem with this time-travelling! I wouldn’t mind watching this one again. Mr. Willis is particularly memorable. You never know who you might have to kill next.
Munich: Sometimes you get a slice of history on big screen in colours. As always with history, it’s bloody. Not much doubt about it – it’s pretty close to the real deal.
Dunkirk: I was all in awe of Mr. Nolan’s groundbreaking use of colours but then the next film started and they were the same. Somebody had played with our TV settings again. Still, a nice anti-commercial for wars everywhere. As if that will help.
The Shape of Water: It’s good but it’s not THAT good. A silly love story between incompatible characters with an unmissable gay friend (those uneaten pies in the fridge, aaaah). If you look a bit deeper, it’s a commercial for socialism in which even monsters are better than capitalist pigs. Good, we need these.
The Death of Stalin: Bahha, Mr. Buscemi makes a New Yawker out of the old boy Nikita. Hilarious casting all around. Something tells me there was a LOT of fun on the set. I can tell Russians are not loving it though. Even though they don’t show even half of the horrors.
Soaked in Bleach: Heartbreaking, that’s what they are, both this documentary and the next. This one is about a detective who was hired by Courtney Love to find Kurt Cobain. And then he turned up dead (Kurt, that is). The question remains: How do you shoot up a triple lethal dose of heroin and then STILL blow your head off?
Kurt Cobain – Montage of Heck: This is the saddest thing I have seen in a while: Kurt in home videos, own words and testimonies. Still, he is smiling more than I’ve ever seen him. He reminds me of a friend’s son. How to break it to her?? Can you even imagine becoming the biggest thing in music overnight after playing garages and dances to which the drummer’s mom comes to film her son?
Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri: Oh, man. Just as I was starting to believe that I was watching the best film of the last six months, sighing and cursing and cheering in all the right places with the amazing cast, the last ten minutes rolled in. I suppose there had to be some kind of ending other than a. heroic and b. tragic. That’s the one: c. unsatisfying. Americans, do yourselves a favour: take ALL your guns, bury them and forget about them, forever.
Paradise Lost: The Child Murders at Robin Hood Hills: Not much to say about it. Watch it and let the reality of America sink in, in case you don’t know it yet. Years later, the accused cowrote a Pearl Jam song with them, of all things.
*Moon: If they wanted to give Mr. Sam Rockwell an Oscar, this is what he should get it for. Yep, for playing a clone. And a clone. And a clone. 😀 How do you deal with the fact that you’re a clone and you’re dying because you’re only good to last three years? Teeth falling out? Join the club.
Miss Sloane: Ah, Ms. Chastain. ❤ Some jobs are a bit harder to do well than others. Including that of an actress who must watch her film being smeared by anti-propaganda. I talked of Russia above, but America, you’re worse. See it for yourself before you believe anything. Goes for everything in life.
Baby Driver: This film has one big black spot and its name starts with an S. All the rest is pure music. The leading actor, which I must memorise right now, Mr. Ansel Elgort (for real??), is such a joy to behold. Of course it’s style over story but see if I care.
Chasing Coral: A documentary to make you scream. No joy here. See what corals are doing just trying to survive. Soon we will have to do the same.
*Another Earth: What I love about a film (or a book) is the feeling it gives me, even if I don’t remember the details. I wish I didn’t google it right now: such bad ratings and reviews. People expect something else. They don’t want to see, they want to forget. What will you hope for when they discover Earth II.?
Tschick (Goodbye Berlin): A joyous, yet profound teen flick about two boys who go on the road and meet a girl. One is local, German, the other is from steppes far away. Only now I see that it is a work of Mr. Fatih Akin who has done some lovely stuff already. Here he is having as much fun as the boys. Incorrect in all the senses.
The Boat That Rocked (Pirate Radio): The film with a rock’n’roll heart and ensemble cast, including some dead people, about a crew who fights the government by running a pirate radio from a ship. See how this one suddenly turns into my favourite film of the last six months. (All the others below are series.) Not only but also for the sake of Mr. Tom Sturridge.
The Fall (series): The first series I binged on. Such survivor’s guilt. Ms. Gillian Anderson in a role to die for, Mr. Jamie Dornan in one to kill over. He reminds me of an ex so much. (Ahaaa, that’s where the guilt comes from! :D) All in all, a slick cat-and-mouse game that has brought about a new-found respect for Gillian in particular and TV in general.
I Love Dick (series): No word would do that one justice. Go and watch. Prime has it for free… (Except of course if you’ll hate it immediately. It’s been known to happen.) Also, it takes place in Marfa, Texas. I’m quite sure one of you did a post on it recently. Again, new-found respect for Ms. Kathryn Hahn. (And only a wee mention of Mr. Bacon. Hihihi).
Seven Up project: I wrote about it here. Michael Apted is behind this mind-blowing ride that follows the lives of several children from age 7 by years of 7 to the age of 56 which is how old they were in 2012 when the last part of the series was made. Yep, soon time will come to visit them again. And they will be 63.
Born in the USSR project: Same as above, just that instead of the Brits it is about various children from the former Soviet Union who now live as adults in various states in the region, which means that for them life is much, much tougher. Everybody living in the West should have a look before they bitch about anything at all. One of the boys immediately gets adopted by an American couple who saw him in the first part. Another child cannot be tracked down after seven years. Plus there is a live birth. (Both series available on YouTube.)
One Mississippi (series): And we have reached the best company to spent screen time with: Ms. Tig Notaro with her real-life wife and a host of colourful characters from the American south. It’s not about laughs at all, it is about life. They are such darlings, the bunch. Let me mention only Ms. Sheryl Lee Ralph as Tig’s father’s love interest. One episode shows what the disgraced producer-in-name-only of this show was obviously in the habit of doing to female colleagues. As it is, the series got cancelled after season 2. (Free on Amazon Prime)
On photographs: the assortment of local trash plus mushrooms, which sums up (some) films pretty well.