Sunday, March 31, 2013

The Films That I Saw: March 2013

Spring has already started and so far, this has been an extremely good month as far as film-watching is concerned. Recently, I decided to write down a list of what films to see for the month in order to have things planned and not divert myself or figure out what to watch in the coming days. It’s an idea that not only worked but most of the films I chose to watch for March definitely all played to something that was related to the Blind Spot selection I chose. What I didn’t expect was that the films I chose to watch this month were films that really exceeded beyond what I had expected from these films.

In the course of March, I saw a total of 45 films. 32 first-timers and 13 re-watches. The same as last month except in more first-timers and less re-watches yet the number of first-timers I discovered were a different mix of films from the works of Whit Stillman to the cinema of Japan as well as films by other regarded Asian filmmakers. Red Beard was one of the highlights but there were so many films I saw this month that really knocked everything out of the park that it is probably one of the most difficult lists to come up with. Here are the top 10 first-timers of the month:

1. Sansho the Bailiff

2. Metropolitan

3. The Samurai Trilogy

4. Still Walking

5. Riding Alone for Thousands of Miles

6. Stoker

7. Lore

8. The Sword of Doom

9. The Last Days of Disco

10. The Life of Oharu

Monthly Mini-Reviews:

Classic Albums: Screamadelica

I do watch the Classic Albums series from time to time whenever it’s on VH1 Classics though it’s often with records I’m not really connected with as it often focuses mostly on albums of the 60s, 70s, and 80s. In the case with Screamadelica which is one of my all-time favorite albums, it was something different that stood out from the series. Seeing some of the rare footage of the band before that period when they made the songs from the album and how they became this rock band that got people to dance is just amazing to watch. So good that it made listen to that album which is actually my second favorite Primal Scream album. Vanishing Point is my all-time favorite record from that band.

Croissant de Triomphe

If anyone had grown up watching Mickey Mouse cartoons over the years and seemed content that there wouldn’t be anything new from the iconic Walt Disney character. It was a good surprise to see Mickey Mouse come back in a new adventure where he came out with a look that was old and new but it was obviously him as he’s just trying to deliver French bread and croissants for Minnie’s cafĂ© in Paris. It’s a really fun cartoon to watch.

Withnail and Us

Withnail and I was definitely one of the highlights of first-timers that I saw last month and so far in the year that I started watching clips of that film on the Internet. I also came across this documentary about the film and why it’s so revered in the world of British cinema and British culture. Some of the surprising facts about the film were quite funny as well as the fact a lot of the comedy were based on some things that really happened. With the recent passing of Richard E. Griffiths, I think it’s time that people should revisit this classic film. Chin-chin dear old Uncle Monty.

Rock of Ages

I don’t really consider myself a fan of 80s classic rock. I find it to be cheesy, lacking substance, and often too sappy for my tastes. Yet, I will take that music over what is hot right now any day. Unfortunately, this film made me detest those songs even more as it was presented in what is undoubtedly one of the worst films I had ever seen. While only Paul Giamatti, Tom Cruise, and Tom Cruise’s monkey were the only things to keep the film from being a total disaster. It wasn’t enough to made me roll my eyes and do face palms as I watched the likes of Alec Baldwin, Mary J. Blige, Catherine Zeta-Jones, and Russell Brand butcher these songs and made them even worse. The leads in Julianne Hough and Diego Boneta were easily the worst thing in the film as neither could sing nor act as Hough makes Britney Spears’ singing voice sound actually sound great while Boneta looks too much of a pretty boy to be a convincing rocker. It’s crap like this that forces me to have no choice but to blast Slayer and destroy all of that lame shit.

Top 10 Re-Watches:

1. Trainspotting

2. Edward Scissorhands

3. The Fifth Element

4. Sense & Sensibility

5. William Shakespeare’s Romeo + Juliet

6. Swiss Family Robinson

7. The Imaginarium of Dr. Parnassus

8. Kurosawa: The Last Emperor

9. See the Sea

10. Kung Fu Panda 2

Well, that is it for March. With some upcoming theatrical film releases to watch in To the Wonder, The Place Beyond the Pines, Trance, and maybe Spring Breakers. There will be a slew of films I will see as it relates to the works of female directors like Chantal Akerman, Lena Duhnam, and Andrea Arnold as well as films by Danny Boyle, Baz Luhrmann, Powell and Pressburger and Francois Ozon where I’m still working on creating new reviews of films I had seen previously from him. Along with the next film of the Blind Spots series and whatever it’s related to, the Auteurs piece on Nicole Holofcener will definitely come in some time in the middle of the month. There is also a slight possibility in the return of the Favorite Films series as I’ve definitely figured out what film to write about. Until then, this is thevoid99 signing off.

© thevoid99 2013

1 comment:

Chris said...

That's so great when films really exceeded beyond expectations. I had that too in March.
Sansho the Bailiff and Red Beard are on my list. Soon, I'll be watching Touch of Evil + High and Low, that you previously recommended.
Withnail and Us doc I haven't seen- the dialogue is so quotable in that comedy. RIP Richard E. Griffiths.
I wanted to watch Parnassus-ever since I saw this fan clip: