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Old June 12 2009, 10:39 PM   #9
Out Of My Vulcan Mind
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Re: Movies Seen in 2009

I almost never watch films theatrically anymore. I watch them on Blu-ray and/or Sky Movies HD instead. I keep track of the films I watch as I see them for the first time. So far this year I've seen 97 films that I hadn't seen previously:

Mr. Brooks (2007) - very effective film; unexpectedly funny in a very dark sort of way

Run Fat Boy Run (2007) - a good light comedy

Hellboy II: The Golden Army (2008) - I was a bit disappointed with it on first viewing, but it grew on me when I watched it again later; great production design

Wedding Daze (2007) - awful

Black Sunday (1977) - pretty good

Hoodwinked (2005) - a decent storyline is undermined by cheap, lousy animation

Nancy Drew (2007) - pretty good

The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford (2007) - beautifully filmed and well acted, but overlong; there have been a lot of Jesse James films but none have really stuck to the historical record

The Dark Knight (2008) - the greatest superhero film made to date

Alvin and the Chipmunks (2007) - reasonably entertaining with some cute moments, don't see why so much hate was aimed at it

Them (2006) - a very effective French horror film, although the claim that it's based on a true story doesn't hold up to scrutiny

In the Land of Women (2007) - a good film, and it was nice to see Meg Ryan looking more like her old self again

Breaking and Entering (2006) - a good film

The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance (1962) - good, but not quite as good as its reputation

Cloverfield (2008) - a good idea, but the extent of the shaky cam was too damned annoying for it to be enjoyable

McLintock! (1963) - rousing good fun, although it'll give feminists fits

The Sword and the Sorcerer (1982) - very cheesy and low budget, but kinda fun

The Good German (2006) - pretty good in parts, but too self-conscious

The Goonies (1985) - lots of fun; I'm a child of the 80s, but somehow this one slipped through the net and I only got around to seeing it now

A Bridge Too Far (1977) - a good film, but the outcome of the battle doesn't make for a good cinematic ending

The Darjeeling Limited (2007) - pretty good, but not as good as Wes Anderson's previous films

Edison (2005) - awful

St. Trinianís (2007) - even more awful

The Great McGinty (1940) - a good film

The Flight of the Phoenix (1965) - a very good film, much better than the remake

How to Steal a Million (1966) - a charming film with Audrey Hepburn looking especially great decked out in mod fashions

House of Bamboo (1955) - interesting to see all of the location shooting in 1950s Tokyo, but a dull film overall

The Duellists (1977) - Ridley Scott's first feature film and a fine one at that

Definitely, Maybe (2008) - pretty good

Derailed (2005) - pretty good

1408 (2007) - good, but not quite as good as I'd heard

A Clockwork Orange (1971) - great film, worthy of its status as one of the classics of science fiction cinema

The Wicked Lady (1983) - crap, but cheesy fun; lots of nudity, including from Marina Sirtis

Howard the Duck (1986) - awful, even worse than its reputation

The Virgin Suicides (1999) - pretty good, but doesn't amount to much

Frenzy (1972) - latter day Hitchcock with some very dark comedy; London and its inhabitants never looked grubbier

The Inn of the Sixth Happiness (1958) - a good film

Mamaís Boy (2007) - pretty bad

The High and the Mighty (1954) a decent film, a prototype of the disaster genre

Battleship Potemkin (1925) - interesting for its place in cinema history as a film that advanced the art of editing and screen composition and fascinating as a time capsule; the plot is pure commie propaganda

Fairy Tale: A True Story (1997) - a good film

The Cotton Club (1984) - great production design and the young Diane Lane is ravishingly beautiful, but the plot meanders around and doesn't amount to much

Southland Tales (2006) - awful

Zulu (1964) - a very good film, although the battle scenes have dated somewhat (the stabs with spears and bayonets are very obvious in how they were faked)

Blow Out (1981) - an effective chiller with an unsettling ending

The Front Page (1974) - pretty good Lemmon/Matthau remake

True Grit (1969) - rousing good fun with John Wayne in great form; "Fill your hand, you son of a bitch!"

Charley Varrick (1973) - pretty good crime film with Walter Matthau playing against type

Romeo and Juliet (1968) - a very well-staged adaptation; the most accurate and complete cinematic adaptation of the play ever made

To Catch a Thief (1955) - Hitchcock in fine form in one of his lighter outings; Grace Kelly is at her most radiant in this

October Sky (1999) - a very good movie, very straightforward and sincere in its drama

Custer of the West (1967) - mediocre

Torn Curtain (1966) - a mostly boring Hitchcock outing with a scene showing how difficult it is to kill someone in a hand-to-hand fight being the sole standout

Barefoot in the Park (1967) - a funny, effective comedy; the producers of Dharma and Greg obviously thought so, too

The Killers (1964) - a decent crime drama

Anne of the Thousand Days (1969) - a very good biopic with Genevieve Bujold in fine form

The Enemy Below (1957) - an entertaining submarine versus destroyer World War II film that shows both sides in a humane fashion

Demetrius and the Gladiators (1954) - reasonably entertaining followup to The Robe

Sunset Blvd. (1950) - a great film; it stands up extremely well

Cries and Whispers (1973) - an Ingmar Bergman masterpiece with one of the most realistic and harrowing depictions of someone dying of cancer ever put on film

Indiscreet (1958) - reasonably entertaining

West Side Story (1961) - I'm not usually one for musicals, but this one is great

The Big Country (1958) - rousing western with a great cast

Viva Zapata! (1952) - a good film, nicely directed by Elia Kazan

The Night of the Hunter (1955) - good, with some very memorable moments, but not quite as good as its reputation

The Bridges at Toko-Ri (1954) - a reasonably effective, if somewhat humdrum, war drama; I can't imagine a studio film having a downbeat ending played in such an abrupt and matter of fact way these days

Burn After Reading (2008) - pretty good, but a lesser Coen Bros outing; John Malkovich is the highlight

Speed Racer (2008) - a great film, very underrated

Wanted (2008) - crap

WALL-E (2008) - a great film

Kung Fu Panda (2008) - very funny

Juno (2007) - pretty good, but overrated

The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor (2008) - crap

Get Smart (2008) - mediocre

The X-Files: I Want to Believe (2008) - better than its reputation, it stands as a more fitting wrap-up than the awful series finale

Wonder Woman (2009) - a very good film from the DC Universe DTV line, best one yet in fact

Appaloosa (2008) - an effective western with Ed Harris and Viggo Mortensen in fine form; Renee Zellweger lets the side down, though

My Best Friendís Girl (2008) - a few funny moments, but mediocre overall; Jason Biggs now looks pretty bad playing increasingly lame versions of his American Pie character

27 Dresses (2008) - reasonably entertaining

Jumper (2008) - dull

Panic in the Streets (1950) - pretty good Elia Kazan drama

Cat People (1982) - cheesy, but fun; Nastassja Kinski and Annette O'Toole are both gorgeous in it

Silent Running (1972) - a hokey hippy trippy sci-fi film

Outland (1981) - an entertaining sci-fi take on High Noon

The Omega Man (1971) - dated, but still rousing entertainment

The Thing (1982) - a great film, John Carpenter's best and one of the best of the genre

Nineteen Eighty-Four (1984) - a great adaptation of Orwell's novel

THX 1138 (1971) - I saw an edited version of this on television when I was a child, but this was my first time seeing the full director's cut; it's a very effective low budget dystopian sci-fi outing from the young George Lucas (with some scenes spruced up a bit with modern FX in the director's cut)

10,000 B.C. (2008) - mediocre, dull

The Day the Earth Stood Still (1951) - good production values for its time, nicely made and acted

The Spiderwick Chronicles (2008) - so-so at the start, but it ended up being a good film

Brazil (1985) - at first it seems like it might be one of Gilliam's cacophonous, messy endeavors, but it comes together and hits the target, ultimately living up to its good reputation

Bedtime Stories (2008) - mediocre

Australia (2008) - seems like it's going to be awful in the early going, but ends up being reasonably entertaining

Quantum of Solace (2008) - a step down in quality from Casino Royale, in fact a couple of steps down

The Black Swan (1942) - mediocre

The Black Hole (1979) - some dated FX and production design (particularly regarding the robots and the visible wires), but good fun nonetheless and generally better than its reputation; the model work for the spaceships holds up well
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