Friday, December 31, 2010

2010 Movies

This is the time of year when everyone in Blogland seems to look back and reflect on what were their favorite movies, music, TV shows, books, etc. of the past year. The only two of those I even halfway keep up with are the first two and I really don't see or hear enough of what is new in either realm to comment the way others do.

As far as music goes I do prepare a Top 10 CD list for Cadence but that is confined to what has been reviewed in the magazine over the past year, not what came out in the actual calendar year. With movies, I simply don't go out to the theatre to see current films that much. Instead like most people these days I see most things at home through my TV, DVD player and computer. So instead I'm going to list a bunch of movies I saw for the first time in 2010 with some comments.

The Ones I Saw In A Theatre (and liked):
Black Swan, Get Low, White Material, Inception, Boxing Gym, The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo, The Art Of The Steal

Classics I Finally Got Around To:
2001: A Space Odyssey, The Taking Of Pelham One Two Three (original version), In A Lonely Place, Peeping Tom, A Walk In The Sun, The Burmese Harp

Recent Acclaimed Films:
Burn After Reading; Ghost World; The Informant!; Rabbit Proof Fence

Robert Ryan Was One Bad Ass:
On Dangerous Ground; Day Of The Outlaw - a strange Western where Ryan plays a rancher whose feud with neighboring farmers is interrupted by a band of ruthless outlaws led by Burl Ives

Assorted Asian Weirdness:
Thirst; Dr. Akagi - The story of a Japanese doctor in the waning months of World War II who is obsessed with curing hepatitis. Far less normal than it sounds.

Jazz Documentaries:
Anita O'Day: The Life Of A Jazz Singer; 'Tis Autumn: The Search For Jackie Paris - Films about the rocky lives of two great jazz singers, one who was famous and one who should have been.

The Troubles:
Hunger; The Magdalene Sisters

The Really Obscure Stuff:
Where Are My Children? - A 1916 anti-abortion film(!) directed by one of the early woman filmmakers, Lois Weber.
Antares - An intricate Austrian drama about three interlocking domestic dramas that all take place within the same apartment complex.
Christ In Concrete - A grim story about the struggles of an Italian immigrant worker in New York City that was actually a prequel of sorts to the novel of the same name. With a blacklisted director in Edward Dmytryk and blacklisted star in Sam Wanamaker.
Shotgun Stories - The story of a blood feud between two Southern families that share the same father.
Claire Dolan - An unsettingly dispassionate look at the career and self-redemption of a New York prostitute.
Carosello Napoletano - A pageant-like musical trawl through Italian history from the Renaissance through post-Mussolini with a young Sophia Loren featured in one sequence.

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