Friday, March 1, 2013

HAPPY NEW MONTH: Farewell, February 2013

The Oscars, my driver's license, Doctor Who - a lot of things went right last month. 
That's not to say things went perfect. We had the questionable - or let's say ambiguous - boob song (which could either be interpreted as McFarlane making fun of the Oscars being sexist, or McFarlane being sexist), then it was my fourth try at the driver's license (which didn't go perfectly right but hey, at least I finally succeeded), and right after falling head over heels in love with David Tennant, he had to go.
The good side of the story: McFarlane's hosting of the Oscars could be interpreted in a very positive way (we'll never know what his intentions really were), I don't have to worry about saving money anymore (at least not to pay for my own stupidity) and the Matt Smith has turned out to be great so far.

Needless to say, it hasn't been a particularly "good" month for movie-watching, due to my Doctor Who obsession, my energy spent on learning how to drive and my energy spent on surviving the post-Oscar depression and zombie mood swings. Add to that a large-scale blogathon of 18 days (10 until now) and you get the point. (By the way, check out the entries for my first blogathon ever, the Snubathon!). I have however managed to catch all films that were nominated for more than one Oscar, except for Anna Karenina which I didn't want to watch before reading one of the best books I ever read. Took me less than a month to read all 1207 pages, so you can see it's a fantastic book. 

Here's what I've seen, read and listened to in time gone by (had to add a little Les Misérables quote)...


10 Things I Hate About You (1999) 
This movie has already been in many of the lists I published in the last ten days. My sister introduced me to it and the only reason I was a little excited was Heath Ledger and Joseph-Gordon Levitt in the same movie. Suprisingly, the latter was just a shadow of his today self, and surprisingly as well, Heath was great as ever. If there's a perfect High School comedy, this has got to be it.

An American Werewolf in London (1981) 
I had no idea what to expect from this and was glad I did expect nothing in the end. A cool soundtrack and unusual coexistence of trash, comedy and horror made it work for me - although the ending was brutal!

Dommeren (2005) Danish
This is what we watch in philosophy class. Instead of The Matrix (we watched the beginning and I finished it today and it's so damn great but more about that next month), we get some boring sh*t about... yeah, what was it about anyway?

Gut (2012) 
One of the two DVDs that were sent to me by different indie film makers... while the other one was real inspiring this was pretty lame... but watch out for a longer review some time this month.

Les Misérables (2012) 
I'd like to say I don't understand why so many people didn't like it - but I do. The characters aren't very developed and much of the plot seems unrealistic. That is, if you're not used to films like this, or don't like films like this. I for one do love films like this, when they're well-made, and this one truly was.

Miss Pettigrew Lives For a Day (2008) 
By far the sweetest movie I saw for a long time. Amy Adams is adorable as al... often, I mean, and so is the whole story. Really liked the pacing too, after all those long-drawn Oscar nominees.

Percy Jackson & The Lightning Thief (2010) 
Believe me, I did not expect to like this at all. It just has a certain magic and honesty to it though, so as much as I wanted to hate it back when I saw the trailers in 2010, I enjoyed it a lot. After all, hell being placed just beside the Hollywood sign is pretty cool.

Tangled (2010) 
The second try I gave this movie - I fell asleep the first time but it really wasn't the movie's fault. Apart from having a nice soundtrack and okay animation (actually below average in my terms, especially for Disney) what saved this movie for me was its humour. I really laughed from my heart a couple of time and that's all I could want from an animated princess movie of the 21st century.

The Master (2012) 
First of all: this movie has so many parallels to Doctor Who! The title ("The Master" is one of the Doctor's worst enemies), the rhythmic drumming sound in the background and time travel?! Secondly, I really did like it, despite some negative reviews I read. Especially Sati had some good points, and some I agree with, but for me it was all right that not everything was explained, and that Freddie is a very restricted narrator. The ending was a bit abrupt though, I definitely agree, and the whole story could have been tightened up a little. Thirdly: this movie was so bloody beautiful to look at. Long live the 70mm!

Wild Girl Waltz (2012)
This was the second of the afore-mentioned DVDs and I genuinely liked it. The editing was a bit shaky, as was the cinematography at times, but the acting was great and it was much funnier than large-scale rom-coms that make it to my home town theatre. Thumbs up, and a review is coming up this month.

Zero Dark Thirty (2012) 
As much as I liked Jennifer Lawrence's performance in Silver Linings, I don't agree with her being the best actress of 2012. Not at all. Other actresses such as Jessica Chastain just did a better job, or at least had some more challenging roles. But also apart from Chastain's performance in this one and the fact that it's one of the least sexist Oscar nominated movies from 2012, I truly liked Zero Dark Thirty. It was suspenseful, it was philosophic (to me) and it was critical (to me). 


Nils Holgerssons underbara resa (1962) 
It was nowhere as perfect as I remember the tv series (the movie is a compilation of the episodes) to be, but it's an important part of my childhood. 


Amount of feature films watched: 12  (January –16)
Average rating: 7.2 (January –0.6)

Worst movie of the month: Gut
Best movie of the month: Les Misérables


Doctor Who, Season III + IV
Not enough room to express my fascination of these series. No words, even.
Verdict: Off course I'm still addicted!


Anna Karenina (Leo Tolstoy)
From the first page on, I was enthralled with this book. And I do not see the reason why - is it the language, the narration, the characters, the story? Or all of that? Is it perhaps the variety, the size of this novel? There is so much in it - social criticism, philosophies, religion, emotions... yes, mainly emotions. Emotions and characters, and relations between characters. Anna, Lewin, Wronskij, Kitty, Karenin - all these characters have grown so close to me through these 1207 pages. 
There's something I'm very certain of: I will never forget Anna Karenina. And I'm quite sure I'll re-read it some day. And I'm definitely going to check out some of the cinematic adaptions.



  1. Happy New Month!

    An American Werewolf in London: This was one of the very first horror movies I watched (at a very young and impressionable age). It remains one of the very best.

    Gut: I too was offered the screener, but I didn't accept because I didn't think it would be any good, and I'm just not comfortable trashing indie films.

    The Master: Haha, you should expand on your theory and make a full Doctor Who/The Master comparison post.

    Zero Dark Thirty: That was an impressive performance, but I felt the character lacked depth. I needed something more to connect with. Still it is one of the best English language films of 2012. I certainly enjoyed it more than Argo.

    1. To you too!
      I don't know how morally acceptable it is to trash an indie film and that wasn't what I thought of when I accepted the DVD... they want their movie to be known, and I'll let them know whether I like it or not. Doesn't mean I don't appreciate the fact that indie movies do exist, and I'm sure there are people who liked the movie.

      Great idea about the DW/ Master post - some time when I'm done with my blogathon ;)
      Perhaps Chastain's character did lack depth... but the performance was great. And I too enjoyed ZDT a lot more than Argo - another year with the movie I wanted to win Best Picture least winning.

    2. Just to clarify. I think it's perfectly fine, morally speaking, to trash any film. So I'm not judging you on that. It's just that I made it the mission of my blog to focus on celebrating films, as best as possible.

    3. I understand :).
      My mission is just to share my opinion on films - mixed with a small dose of objective analysis.

  2. DOCTOR WHO!!!!!!! Matt <3

    My theory for both of us liking Les Mis is because we're Bollywood people.

    Crap I need to learn how to drive. I'll be rubbish at it though.

    1. Who's back!

      I've thought of that theory too - it's not enough to "just" be a musical person because the songs in Les Mis weren't just meant to entertain, but were part of the story. And that's true for many Bollywood films too (although a lot of people like to believe the opposite).

  3. Congrats on the driving license! That must be a weight off your shoulders.

    Glad you got to see The Master (2012). Maybe has potential to become a classic. Sati's review of it was indeed great, the changing colors of eyes I missed.

    J Chastain was good, but I'm with BT that the characters in ZD30 lacked depth.For me, the strength of Bigelow's film is that it asks the audience to question the actions of the military. Maybe that debate is more interesting to me than the movie itself! So I agree, when you say it's philosophic and critical.

    1. It is!!!
      You missed the changing colors of the eyes? Well, it's easy to miss though if you just look away for a sec. Loved the scene where Freddie is told not to close his eyes - I didn't blink for one second!

      Maybe the conflict of ZD30 is indeed more interesting than the film itself/ is what makes the film interesting. I've always been interested in debates like that.


Let the discussion begin!