Archive for December, 2012

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My Month in Films: December 2012

December 31, 2012

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25 films, 17 first time viewings

Best first time viewings
1. Notorious (Alfred Hitchcock, 1946, USA)
2. Pierrot le fou (Jean-Luc Godard, 1965, France/Italy)
3. The Hunter (Rafi Pitts, 2010, Iran/Germany)
4. Animal Kingdom (David Michôd, 2010, Australia)
5. Miracle on 34th Street (George Seaton, 1947, USA)
6. Sightseers (Ben Wheatley, 2012, UK)
7. Jack Reacher (Christopher McQuarrie, 2012, USA)
8. Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance (Mark Neveldine/Brian Taylor, 2012, USA/United Arab Emirates)
9. Grabbers (Jon Wright, 2012, UK/Ireland)
10. Bad 25 (Spike Lee, 2012, USA)

Best rewatches
Chungking Express (Wong Kar Wai, 1994, Hong Kong)
The Incredibles (Brad Bird, 2004, USA)
Fargo (Joel Coen, 1996, USA/UK)
Bad Santa (Terry Zwigoff, 2003, USA/Germany)

Worst
Arthur Christmas (Sarah Smith/Barry Cook, 2011, UK/USA)
Friends with Kids (Jennifer Westfeldt, 2011, USA)
Seven Psychopaths (Martin McDonagh, 2012, UK)
The Girl (Julian Jarrold, 2012, UK)

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Jack Reacher (Christopher McQuarrie, 2012)

December 21, 2012

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Jack Reacher opens with a point-of-view sniper sequence in which a lone gunman causes panic, killing multiple citizens from afar. This impressive, tense scene, as well as a few immediately following it, adds up to a completely dialogue-free opening stretch of roughly seven minutes that conveys a lot of information with very precise, lean visual storytelling. Christopher McQuarrie’s film does veer into expositional dialogue overload on occasion, but it is generally a worthy descendant of the sort of atmospheric 1970s thriller a director like Don Siegel might have been behind; the sniper plot and stoic, cool-headed enforcer protagonist alone certainly recall Siegel’s most famous effort Dirty Harry

Full review at Sound on Sight

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The Skinny’s ‘Films of 2012’

December 3, 2012

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I was invited to submit a list of my favourite releases of 2012 for The Skinny’s annual contributor’s poll, going by UK theatrical release dates but not including festival showings. You can read my list, other individual lists and the consensus top 10 here.

My list there is not necessarily a concrete representation of what I would select now, nor does it account for films like Amour, The Master and ‘Turkey of the Year’ contender Gambit that I saw after the submission deadline.

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My Month in Films: November 2012

December 1, 2012

25 films, 21 first time viewings
A month heavy on films from the current decade (17 in total).

Best first time viewings
1. Amour (Michael Haneke, 2012, Austria/France/Germany)
2. The Master (Paul Thomas Anderson, 2012, USA)
3. Ernest and Celestine (Stéphane Aubier/Vincent Patar/Benjamin Renner, 2012, France)
4. Chinese Roulette (Rainer Werner Fassbinder, 1976, West Germany/France)
5. Sister (Ursula Meier, 2012, France/Switzerland)
6. Skyfall (Sam Mendes, 2012, UK/USA)
7. Moneyball (Bennett Miller, 2011, USA)
8. Silver Linings Playbook (David O. Russell, 2012, USA)
9. A Town Called Panic (Stéphane Aubier/Vincent Patar, 2009, Belgium/Luxembourg/France)
10. The Minister (Pierre Schöller, 2011, France/Belgium)

Best rewatches
The Shining (Stanley Kubrick, 1980, UK/USA)
Boogie Nights (Paul Thomas Anderson, 1997, USA)
Eyes Without a Face (Georges Franju, 1960, France/Italy)

Worst
Gambit (Michael Hoffman, 2012, USA)
Savages (Oliver Stone, 2012, USA)
Lessons of a Dream (Sebastian Grobler, 2011, Germany)