365 Days of Film: January

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I accidentally watched a movie a day for the first week of January. Like a crazy person I thought “Hey, why not keep going for the entire year. You can watch movies and study them at the same time. Win win!”

Yeah, probably not the smartest idea I’ve had as it puts the pressure on me to watch a movie not just because I want to, but have to. It has been a bit of a struggle but I am determined. Some are repeated viewing, because I love them or am in the mood, and others are for broadening my film horizons. Without further ado, here’s January’s list in order.

  1. Strictly Ballroom (1992): Great way to start off the new year. Yes, rom com and formulaic ugly duckling story. It’s just so good! Baz Luhrmann’s first feature film.
  2. Whiskey Tango Foxtrot (2016): Flat out this one isn’t going to be for everyone due to content (language, violence, sex, drunken people). I did love it though. It was real.
  3. Rogue One: A Star Wars Story (2016): It’s Star Wars, that is all. Love it, but flawed.
  4. In Secret (2013): Period piece based on a classic French novel. Started off slow and full of sex then, bam! it went super dark. Not for everyone, but the actors were great.
  5. Ex Machina (2015): Finally saw it! Very cerebral and original. I liked it a lot, but it requires your full attention.
  6. Ben-Hur (2016): It’s just good. I did like it and how they did it to tell the story and not be the Heston version. Still, not necessary to have made it.
  7. The Last Witch Hunter (2015): I wanted to turn my brain off and not have anything heavy. Interesting concept but it only played out meh.
  8. The Motorcycle Diaries (2004): Why did I not watch this sooner?! Love it, steady, interesting, and inspiring. Spanish with English subtitles.
  9. Y Tu Mama Tambien (2002): Definitely not for everyone. Lots of nudity and sexual content. In spite of that I found it captivating and interesting. Loved it really. Spanish with English subtitles.
  10. The Host (2013): Another day I wanted a no thinker. Visually well done, actors were good. Story meh from a meh source material. 606508
  11. Bolgen (The Wave) (2015): Formulaic, but the pacing and tension was great. I was talking to the characters on screen (rare for me). Norwegian with English subtitles.
  12. Terminator Genysis (2015): Argh, this one is frustrating because it was a set up for a trilogy that will never play out. As a stand alone it was ok, but it could have been better.
  13. A Little Bit of Heaven (2011): I thought I had seen it, I had not. Not the worst, but still meh. I love Gael Garcia Bernal as an actor, but he barely rescued it.
  14. Mojave (2015): Ok, interesting idea, played out kind of bad. It was a series of events that ended up with nothing changing. I had to pay attention and it was only minorly interesting.
  15. Thor: The Dark World (2013): It’s MCU, not much to say other than that. I still feel like something is missing in it though.
  16. Dead Man Down (2013): This one is still haunting me. Interesting concept. Colin Farrell and Noomi Rapace were great, even in no dialogue spots. Really loved it. Violence and language.
  17. Moana (2016): Love! Beautiful and detailed animation, love the music and the story. Happiness in visual form for me.
  18. Sin Nombre (2009): I really liked this one. Violence abounds, for a reason aka Latin American gangs. However it was still a simple tale of people who came together on a journey. Good acting. Spanish with English subtitles.
  19. Chasing Liberty (2004): So formulaic and predictable. I still like it for a no-brainer.
  20. The 400 Blows (1959): I found it slow, but so well done, especially for a first feature film. I need to be in the mood though. French with English subtitles.dead_man_down_fullres_1
  21. Cloverfield (2008): I still love it. I love the lack of score. I love that it is the exact length of the tape that the people in the film would have used. Monster film.
  22. Children of Men (2006): I still love this one too. Steady and gritty. Violence and language warning.
  23. Pillow Talk (1959): Ooo, risque for the era. Very dated though. I think a lot of people today won’t understand the point behind it due to the premise of a party line alone.
  24. Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit (2014): This one was good, not great, but good.
  25. Lost Horizon (1937): I haven’t seen it in years. It’s to the era and is good, but I wasn’t in the mood for it. That happens.
  26. Prisoners (2013): Very intense and well done. Not for everyone, the violence mostly. Freaking Hugh Jackman was disturbing in a good way. I cringed when I should have.
  27. Zootopia (2016): Cute and original, which is great. Wasn’t expecting a detective/crime thriller type (even though I knew the bunny was a cop) that was as intense as it was in a kids film. Pretty good and didn’t have to think, just enjoy.
  28. You Instead (Tonight You’re Mine) (2011): Formulaic rom com type, but different and original enough. I really liked it. Love the soundtrack and it made me smile.
  29. If I Stay (2014): A re-watch, but I still like it. Teen audience romantic tearjerker, but still keeps me following it.
  30. Sing (2016): That was fun. Again, the formula is there but it was original enough that I really liked it. The music was great, as were the actors.
  31. Blue Jay (2016): Oh my goodness. Black and white and not colour, which worked really well. It was steady and real. The actors had amazing chemistry, I could feel the emotions/atmosphere come off the screen. There were great. Small indie film, worth it.

So there you have my first month of movie watching. Granted I don’t tell you much about the films, if I wanted to do a proper review I’d be typing one up a day and have no time for anything else.

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How did I acquire all these random films? The public library is actually a great resource for free rentals of films. I also went to the theatre for some (since they are too recent to be on DVD), took out a few from the local video rental store, raided my personal collection, and Netflix. Sometimes I look on Netflix for ones I would never think of when I’m at a rental shop because it is less blockbuster and more random ones.

If anyone wants to know why I watch some of the very non-family friendly ones, feel free to ask. I have no issue with answering that, it just takes up too much space here.

Ok, hopefully I won’t be super quiet on here for the next month until I do the next month of films post. Take care everyone. Blessings.

Hilary

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