Friday, September 30, 2016

Films That I Saw: September 2016

The heat is starting to come down and cold will emerge hopefully as it’s time for the real film-going season to begin. Especially as I hope to end what has become a four-month drought of going to the movie theaters due to all sorts of things. In the meantime, I’m trying to stay away from the chaos that is the Presidential election as I wasn’t entirely surprised at how disastrous the first debate was as I really hope something good will happen. Yet, this has not been a very good year at all as more celebrity deaths happen as the likes of Arnold Palmer, Jose Fernandez, and many others are now gone. Lately, I’ve been distracting myself with watching shows from the Disney Channel like Bunk’d, Jessie, and Austin & Ally just for light entertainment as well as wrestling company such as Lucha Underground and Ring of Honor while starting to lament on what could be the final days of TNA just as they had finally hit some pay dirt thanks in part to the Broken Hardyz.

Then there’s WWE where even though it’s been nearly 2 years since I watched it regularly as I haven’t seen any of their programming in more than a year. Yet, I have been reading Cageside as it is clear that the company is really unsure what to do ever since they brought back the brand split. I have however, become amused over the state of what Monday Night RAW has become as some are calling it RAW is Snore as they’re doing the same old shit over and over again. Yet, Smackdown Live! has managed to create its own identity and are doing well where they actually tell stories and use most of its roster and give them something meaningful. Sure, there’s a few flaws in the show but at least they got something of interest. Then there’s CM Punk whose UFC debut was pretty bad. I wasn’t surprised that he lost but I was more surprised at how bad he got his ass kicked. It was disheartening to watch knowing how much work he had to put into his debut and it wasn’t good enough. I’m still going to support him no matter what as he at least had the guts to get inside the octagon and take a beating.

In the month of September, I saw a total of 31 films 19 first-timers and 12 re-watches as I decided to take things slow this time around. Largely as I just didn’t want to overwhelm myself and watch movies every day. The big highlight of the month was my Blind Spot assignment in Come and See. Here are the Top 10 First Timers of September 2016:

1. Santa Sangre

2. Brooklyn

3. Speedy

4. Steamboat Bill Jr.

5. My Mutant Brain

6. Elvis

7. Major Dundee

8. Dark Star

9. Midnight Movies: From the Margin to the Mainstream

10. Fando y Lis

Monthly Mini-Reviews

Four Days in October

One of five 30 for 30 episodes that I watched this month began with the story about the 2004 American League Championship and the four days in which the Boston Red Sox made their comeback being down three games to nothing against the dreaded New York Yankees. Told by the players, it showcases what was going on and the atmosphere of those four games that would eventually have the Red Sox not just win the American League Championship but also break the legendary Curse of the Bambino and win the World Series.

Coney Island

A film from Roscoe “Fatty” Arbuckle that also stars Buster Keaton is a delightful silent comedy short about what happens when two different men go to Coney Island. Arbuckle trying to get another woman despite being married while Keaton just wanders around and causes all sorts of shit. It’s pretty funny as they use the locations in the Coney Island fairgrounds as it is something fans of Keaton and Arbuckle would enjoy though it’s minor work from Keaton.

Little Big Men

One of the great underdog stories about how this small team from Kirkland, Washington would make it to the finals of the 1982 Little League World Series against the heavily-favored Taiwan and beat them to win the series. Featuring many interviews with the players, it showcases what these kids would do but also how fame came into the forefront of its pitcher who became very uncomfortable with the attention he received. It’s a fascinating story about a little team that brought some hope to the country during the early 1980s.

Trojan War

In the 2000s, there was no team that was considered the best than the USC Trojans under the coaching of Pete Carroll who brought its football program back to prominence. With a groundswell of support from Hollywood and players being treated like celebrities, it is a classic rise and fall tale of a team that rose high only to be crippled by scandal. Stories about college football definitely showcase something that feels pure about the game yet there is always something dark that lurks around as it’s often due to the fact that these young players are given the chance to do something meaningful only to get shit on because of money or some sort of bullshit.

Run Ricky Run

Ricky Williams is unquestionably one of the great players in football yet was unfairly ridiculed for some of the decisions he made as it relates to his decision to quit playing football in 2004 for a one-year retirement. Some of it is due to his desire to smoke marijuana as well as some form of self-fulfillment. Yet, it’s a story told with a sense of redemption where Williams wouldn’t just conquer some of his demons but also get his life in order as well as enjoy playing football.

Small Potatoes: Who Killed the USFL?

This is truly one of the best of the 30 for 30 series as it talks about the short-lived United States Football League that was this alternative of the NFL that played its games during the spring and summer during the early 1980s. It was a league that gave players who never made it to the NFL a chance to play as it made stars out of guys like Herschell Walker, Steve Young, and Jim Kelly. Yet, it never had a chance to grow all because of some rich asshole who decided to challenge the NFL and their power only to succeed in calling them a monopoly but the USFL only got a dollar from that suit. It’s that asshole who is currently running for the U.S. presidency.

Top 10 Re-Watches:

1. Lost in Translation


3. Playtime

4. Blazing Saddles

5. Dr. No

6. The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford

7. Young Frankenstein

8. Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory

9. Steve Jobs

10. The Kid Stays in the Picture

Well that is it for September as another highlight of the month was the Kraftwerk concert I attended earlier this month. I’m not sure what I’ll see in theaters as I hope to see Voyage of Time if it’s playing in Atlanta. Yet, my main focus for October will be horror and suspense films that include some films of John Carpenter as well as a Blind Spot. Until then, this is thevoid99 signing off…

© thevoid99 2016


Anonymous said...

Wow to see it all laid out like've got some varied taste!

Dell said...

Very nice set of movies you watched, this month. Run Ricky Run and Little Big Men are both excellent docs. Glad you enjoyed them. I started watching the one of the USFL, but never got to finish it. I need to go back to that.

I also still need to see Lost in Translation.

Being a life long Yankees fan, I'll probably continue skipping Four Days in October, thank you very much.

thevoid99 said...

@assholes-Thank you.

@Wendell-I like the 30 for 30 series and maybe do the whole thing. That would be a nice challenge. I understand. My brother-in-law is from Boston and he's a Red Sox fan. I'm a Braves fan.

ruth said...

En eclectic viewing list Steven! Hope things improve for you this month and you get to see some good flicks at the theater. Hey at least you didn't miss out on Summer movies as there's hardly any good ones.

"I’m trying to stay away from the chaos that is the Presidential election…" Ahah yeah me too! For once I'm actually glad I can't vote yet, it's seriously been a crazy election year!

thevoid99 said...

@ruth-I hope the fall is better and I will see some films in the theaters. Anything to distract myself from the bullshit of the presidential election.