Officially The Best Redux

(June 13, 2020)

As a contrast, after watching a year’s worth of Netflix movies, I thought it would be fun to watch all the films on the Sight & Sound directors’ poll, so I did, and probably bored all you all to death while doing it. Or was that the COVID? It was probably the COVID. *crosses fingers* … Continue reading Officially The Best Redux

OTB#1: Tokyo Story

(June 10, 2020)

Tokyo Story. Yasujirô Ozu. 1953. ⚄ We’ve reached the end of this blog series, and we go out on a really good one. It’s a really moving film; even more so than that bicycle thief one. I can totally see why this ended up as #1 in 2012: The performances are swell, the cinematography is … Continue reading OTB#1: Tokyo Story

OTB#2: 2001: A Space Odyssey

(June 10, 2020)

2001: A Space Odyssey. Stanley Kubrick. 1968. ⚅ The end is nigh! For this blog series. I think… I haven’t seen this movie since the 80s? I think I saw it in a movie theatre? Yeah, I’m pretty sure I did. And then on VHS later. When thinking back on it, there’s so many scenes … Continue reading OTB#2: 2001: A Space Odyssey

OTB#2: Citizen Kane

(June 9, 2020)

Citizen Kane. Orson Welles. 1941. ⚂ I have seen this movie a number of times before — I’m not a complete moron. (Note: “Complete”.) But it’s been several decades, and I just remember some flashes of a huge, empty house, and a sled being thrown into an incinerator? Oh, now it’s coming back to me… … Continue reading OTB#2: Citizen Kane

OTB#4: 8½

(June 8, 2020)

8½. Federico Fellini. 1963. ⚅ I watched this (wow) six years ago, and it’s a wonderful movie. This blog post is part of the Officially The Best series.

OTB#5: Taxi Driver

(June 8, 2020)

Taxi Driver. Martin Scorsese. 1976. ⚅ OK, let me just tell you where I’m coming from: I don’t like Martin Scorsese’s movies. All the ones I can recall seeing are about uninteresting morons that do uninteresting and stupid things. They’re usually competently shot, with a cast of actors that make watching the movies not sheer … Continue reading OTB#5: Taxi Driver

OTB#6: Apocalypse Now

(June 8, 2020)

Apocalypse Now. Francis Ford Coppola. 1979. ⚃ I’ve seen this a couple of times before? But back in the 80s. I remember being quite taken with most of Coppola’s movies at the time — I even liked One from the Heart and Rumble Fish (well, sort of). Sitting down to watch this, though, I have … Continue reading OTB#6: Apocalypse Now

OTB#7: Vertigo

(June 6, 2020)

Vertigo. Alfred Hitchcock. 1958. ⚅ This movie is #1 on the critics’ poll. I have seen this before, of course, but… it’s probably a while ago? Is this the one with the Dali sequences? Hm… No, that was Spellbound! Which I have to see again. Oh right, this is the one with Kim Novak… Which … Continue reading OTB#7: Vertigo

OTB#7: The Godfather

(June 5, 2020)

The Godfather. Francis Ford Coppola. 1972. ⚄ I watched the second episode in this series a couple of months ago, and it was (to my great surprise) quite fun. So I’m guessing this is gonna suck. [five minutes pass] I can’t stop staring at the huge wads of cotton they’ve stuffed into Brando’s face: He … Continue reading OTB#7: The Godfather

OTB#9: Mirror

(June 5, 2020)

The Mirror. Andrei Tarkovski. 1975. ⚅ I watched this film when doing the one-movie-from-each-country blog thing. It’s really good, but I think Stalker is better, really. And perhaps Solaris, too? But I can kinda see why that one isn’t on this OTB list… I think… Anyway! This one is really good, too. This blog post … Continue reading OTB#9: Mirror

OTB#10: The Bicycle Thieves

(June 5, 2020)

Bicycle Thieves. Vittorio De Sica. 1948. ⚅ I watched this amazing movie in 2014? I’m not rewatching it now, because I’m all out of kleenexes. *sniff* I’m tearing up just thinking about the movie. This blog post is part of the Officially The Best series.

OTB#11: Breathless

(June 5, 2020)

Breathless. Jean-Luc Godard. 1960. ⚄ I watched this some years ago, and it’s a wonderful movie. This blog post is part of the Officially The Best series.

OTB#12: Raging Bull

(June 5, 2020)

Raging Bull. Martin Scorsese. 1980. ⚁ OK, we’re now in the final dozen movies in this blog series, and what’s striking about the final (i.e., most highly rated) movies is that they’re mostly box office smashes: It is, perhaps, not surprising, exactly — but it’s definitely a thing. It’s not that the OTB list is … Continue reading OTB#12: Raging Bull

OTB#13: Persona

(June 4, 2020)

Persona. Ingmar Bergman. 1966. ⚅ I watched this movie two years ago during the 87 Bergman Things blog series, but I wanted to watch it again, so here you go: Probably a slightly different series of screenshots? You gets what you pays for, dead reader. [thirty minutes pass] Looking at the remaining films on the … Continue reading OTB#13: Persona

OTB#13: The 400 Blows

(June 4, 2020)

The 400 Blows. François Truffaut. 1959. ⚅ I really thought I’d seen this before, but I couldn’t find it anywhere… until I searched for Quatre Cents Coups. Duh. Anyway, I watched this in 2016, and now I’m watching it again. I don’t actually remember much of this (pre?-)Nouvelle Vague movie other than that it was … Continue reading OTB#13: The 400 Blows

OTB#13: Andrei Rublev

(June 3, 2020)

Andrei Rublev. Andrei Tarkovsky. 1966. ⚂ I watched this a couple of years ago, and it’s a bit naff. Which was really surprising for me, because Tarkovsky is usually absolutely brilliant. This blog post is part of the Officially The Best series.

OTB#16: Fanny and Alexander

(June 3, 2020)

Fanny & Alexander. Ingmar Bergman. 1982. ⚅ I watched this in 2018, but I’ve watched it a bunch of times before. It is 100% amazeballs. This blog post is part of the Officially The Best series.

OTB#17: Seven Samurai

(June 3, 2020)

Seven Samurai. Akira Kurosawa. 1954. ⚂ [two minutes pass] I thought I had seen this movie before, but now I think not? And it lasts ALL THE HOURS. I may have to take a pause in the middle of this. I mean, I got up at 6 this morning and it’s 20 now… [half an … Continue reading OTB#17: Seven Samurai

OTB#18: Rashomon

(June 3, 2020)

Rashomon. Akira Kurosawa. 1950. ⚃ [fifteen minutes pass] I’ve seen this before, of course, but only once? I think? But the Rashomon concept is so well-known that it feels like I’m just waiting for the plot elements to happen… which isn’t the best way to watch a movie. So far, the cinematography has been a … Continue reading OTB#18: Rashomon

OTB#19: Barry Lyndon

(May 31, 2020)

Barry Lyndon. Stanley Kubrick. 1975. ⚁ Oh, I saw this as a (young) teenager. I remember renting it on VHS. What I remember from it is… er… that there were a lot of green hills? Correct! I also remember that I really liked the movie. And that it’s somehow a Kubrick movie that all Kubrick … Continue reading OTB#19: Barry Lyndon

OTB#19: Ordet

(May 31, 2020)

Ordet. Carl Theodor Dreyer. 1955. ⚄ I watched this in 2015, and it’s really good. This blog post is part of the Officially The Best series.

OTB#21: Au Hasard Balthazar

(May 31, 2020)

Au hasard Balthazar. Robert Bresson. 1966. ⚃ I watched this five years ago. I remember liking this a lot more than I apparently did. I was probably wrong! This blog post is part of the Officially The Best series.

OTB#22: Sunrise

(May 31, 2020)

Sunrise. F.W. Murnau. 1927. ⚅ This is a 2K version (from Eureka (Masters of Cinema)), but it’s only been very lightly restored? That is, it’s got a lot of horizontal shudder going on, which is usually the first thing they fix (since it can be done pretty much automatically by computers these days)… but otherwise, … Continue reading OTB#22: Sunrise

OTB#22: Modern Times

(May 31, 2020)

I think that guy might have nose powder. Modern Times. Charles Chaplin. 1936. ⚄ Here’s the thing: Obviously Chaplin is a genius etc bla bla bla, but… they’re not movies that I would seek out to watch on my own, because… I just don’t enjoy them that much? So I’ve never seen this one; perhaps … Continue reading OTB#22: Modern Times

OTB#22: L’Atalante

(May 28, 2020)

L’Atalante. Jean Vigo. 1934. ⚄ I watched this in 2015, and … I vaguely remember this movie. It’s pretty spiffy. And has cats! This blog post is part of the Officially The Best series.

OTB#22: La Règle du jeu

(May 28, 2020)

La Regle du jeu. Jean Renoir. 1939. ⚃ I watched this in… 2014!? That’s like half a lifetime ago. I have absolutely no recollection of having seen this, but apparently I wasn’t too impressed. This blog post is part of the Officially The Best series.

OTB#26: The Night of the Hunter

(May 28, 2020)

The Night of the Hunter. Charles Laughton. 1955. ⚅ Ooo. This is a good one, I think. I may have seen this only once before? Or… I think I remember thinking the last time I saw this (in the 90s? at the Cinematheque?) that I must have seen it before, so I was probably scarred … Continue reading OTB#26: The Night of the Hunter

OTB#26: Touch of Evil

(May 28, 2020)

Touch of Evil. Orson Welles. 1958. ⚄ I watched this movie in 2015, and it was apparently really good. I remember zilch about it now, though. This blog post is part of the Officially The Best series.

OTB#26: The Battle of Algiers

(May 28, 2020)

The Battle of Algiers. Gillo Pontecorvo. 1966. ⚃ I watched this movie when doing the “one movie from every country” thing. It’s a bit disappointing. This blog post is part of the Officially The Best series.

OTB#26: La strada

(May 28, 2020)

La Strada. Federico Fellini. 1954. ⚄ I talked about this movie here. It’s good. This blog post is part of the Officially The Best series.

OTB#30: Stalker

(May 28, 2020)

Stalker. Andrei Tarkovsky. 1979. ⚅ I was so sure I’d already blogged about this movie that I didn’t re-buy it for this Officially The Best blog series. But then it turned out that I hadn’t, so I rebought it on bluray. Which took weeks to get here. And now it turns out that the bluray … Continue reading OTB#30: Stalker

OTB#30: Amarcord

(May 2, 2020)

Amarcord. Federico Fellini. 1973. ⚂ Ah, yes… I saw this a few years ago, but on a horrible interlaced DVD (so the effective resolution was horrible). The is a 2K version restored by Criterion, and… it… still doesn’t really look very good? Like… the colours are kinda all over the place and… but that’s probably … Continue reading OTB#30: Amarcord

OTB#30: L’Avventura

(April 29, 2020)

L’avventura. Michelangelo Antonioni. 1960. ⚅ Emacs tells me that I watched this in 2014, but that was before I started movie blogging 4 realz, so I have no recollection of this movie. But I’ve quite enjoyed the other Antonioni films on the list, so this is probably going to be spiffy. [half an hour passes] … Continue reading OTB#30: L’Avventura

OTB#30: The Godfather: Part II

(April 25, 2020)

The Godfather Part II. Francis Ford Coppola. 1974. ⚄ I’m watching the movies on this list of the officially best movies in reverse order, and since the first Godfather movie is further up on the list, I’m watching part II first. ¡Scandalo! But I gotta keep the blogging concept going, right? Right. I haven’t seen … Continue reading OTB#30: The Godfather: Part II

OTB#30: Il Vangelo secondo Matteo

(April 21, 2020)

The Gospel According to Matthew. Pier Paolo Pasolini. 1964. ⚅ I watched this move a few years ago, and it’s pretty spiffy. This blog post is part of the Officially The Best series.

OTB#30: City Lights

(April 21, 2020)

City Lights. Charles Chaplin. 1931. ⚃ Oh, wow. It’s a silent movie? From 1931? I thought Hollywood had stopped making these at least a couple years before? And everybody had hastily started converting everything into talkies? Was Chaplin one of those people who thought that silent movies were for art and sound was vulgar or … Continue reading OTB#30: City Lights

OTB#30: Come And See

(April 21, 2020)

Come and See. Elem Klimov. 1985. ⚂ I watched this movie the other year, and I wasn’t very impressed, but that might have been because of the horrendous DVD transfer I was watching? This blog post is part of the Officially The Best series.

OTB#37: Un condamné à mort s’est échappé ou Le vent souffle où il veut

(April 21, 2020)

A Man Escaped. Robert Bresson. 1956. ⚄ There’s four films by Bresson on this “officially the best” list, which is a lot? I don’t think there’s anybody with five movies, but Bresson is tied for the coveted Most Movies On The List prize with Ingmar Bergman, Federico Fellini, Jean-Luc Godard, Stanley Kubrick and John Cassavetes. … Continue reading OTB#37: Un condamné à mort s’est échappé ou Le vent souffle où il veut

OTB#37: Some Like It Hot

(April 20, 2020)

Some Like It Hot. Billy Wilder. 1959. ⚄ I’ve blogged about this movie before, but we’re in a pretty serious grouping of movies on this list, so I want to re-watch it. Here’s a second look at the screenshots from that movie. You’re welcome. The last time I watched this, it was on an interlaced … Continue reading OTB#37: Some Like It Hot

OTB#37: La dolce vita

(April 17, 2020)

La dolce vita. Federico Fellini. 1960. ⚅ I must have seen this before? Right? But I can’t really recall it… This is the one with the fountain scene? I must have seen it… or perhaps I’ve just seen that scene, which is included in every documentary about Italian cinema. Oh, yeah! Here’s the opening shot … Continue reading OTB#37: La dolce vita

OTB#37: Close-Up

(April 14, 2020)

Close-Up. Abbas Kiarostami. 1990. ⚄ This is one of the rare movies on this “officially the best” from outside of the US/Europe/Japan/Hong Kong Axis of Movies, and I watched it for my World of Films and Cocktails blog series. It’s really good. This blog post is part of the Officially The Best series.

OTB#37: Viridiana

(April 14, 2020)

Viridiana. Luis Buñuel. 1961. ⚄ The third and final Buñuel movie on this list of movies. (Well, or the first, if you’re counting from the top, which would be more logical…) Eep! No English subtitles on this bluray! *phew* Subscene to the rescue. Without kindly pirates it would be next to impossible to watch the … Continue reading OTB#37: Viridiana

OTB#37: Passion of Joan of Arc

(April 13, 2020)

The Passion of Joan of Arc. Carl Theodor Dreyer. 1928. ⚅ This film is absolutely amazeballs, and I wrote about it here. This blog post is part of the Officially The Best series.

OTB#37: Playtime

(April 13, 2020)

Playtime. Jacques Tati. 1967. ⚅ So this is where Roy Andersson got his aesthetic from! Oh my. I realise now that I’m in a kinda multiple French delusion zone: For some reason, the name “Tati” made me think both of that umbrella movie by Jacques Demy, so slightly understandable, but also of Louis de Funès, … Continue reading OTB#37: Playtime

OTB#44: Le mépris

(April 9, 2020)

Les Mepris. Jean-Luc Godard. 1963. ⚂ I watched this in 2015 and didn’t like it at all, apparently. I was probably wrong, because the screenshots look lovely. This blog post is part of the Officially The Best series.

OTB#44: Once Upon a Time in the West

(April 9, 2020)

One Upon a Time in the West. Sergio Leone. 1968. ⚃ I’ve seen all the Eastwood Leone movies… but I may never have seen this one? I probably have, though, on third-generation VHS back in the 80s. Oh wow. Argento and Bertolucci? Well, the first sounds good, but not the second… OH WOW! This is … Continue reading OTB#44: Once Upon a Time in the West

OTB#44: The Apartment

(April 9, 2020)

The Apartment. Billy Wilder. 1960. ⚂ I watched this movie five years ago, and apparently I didn’t like it? I can’t remember why. I mean, it looks fun? I may be wrong here? I kinda want to re-watch it, but not with that DVD transfer, which sounds tragic. This blog post is part of the … Continue reading OTB#44: The Apartment

OTB#44: Hour of the Wolf

(April 9, 2020)

Hour of the Wolf. Ingmar Bergman. 1968. ⚃ I watched this a couple years ago, and I think it’s an odd Bergman movie to land on this “Officially the Best” list. It’s… I think there’s at least 20 better Bergman movies out there? I mean, it’s not bad, but… This blog post is part of … Continue reading OTB#44: Hour of the Wolf

OTB#48: One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest

(April 9, 2020)

One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest. Milos Forman. 1975. ⚄ I think I saw this when I was a child. I remember… it being sad? Yes. That’s all I remember. And I think I may have it confused with Birdy. And… Oh! Now I remember the Mad parody of it. There’s some pillow action at … Continue reading OTB#48: One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest

OTB#48: L’eclisse

(April 6, 2020)

L’eclisse. Michelangelo Antonioni. 1962. ⚅ Oh, L’eclisse… not Réglisse… So this isn’t a French movie about liquorice, but an Italian movie about an eclipse. Makes more sense. [time passes] OH MY EMACS! Everything in this movie is so gorgeous! The performers, the lighting, the costumes, the interiors, the framing, the film stock, the 2K transfer… … Continue reading OTB#48: L’eclisse

OTB#48: Lawrence of Arabia

(April 4, 2020)

Lawrence of Arabia. David Lean. 1962. ⚁ This isn’t a movie I’ve looked forwards to watching. I think I’ve seen it… a couple of times? Back in the 80s? I seem to remember it being one of those double VHS box things? And all I remember about the movie is that it’s one portentous desert … Continue reading OTB#48: Lawrence of Arabia

OTB#48: The Searchers

(March 22, 2020)

The Searchers. John Ford. 1956. ⚃ There’s sure a whole bunch of westerns on this survey, padner. I got this one from a 20 disc box set some years back. I think it was this? That’s a pretty solid collection. This is the only John Ford movie on the list, which is somewhat surprising. And … Continue reading OTB#48: The Searchers

OTB#48: Pickpocket

(March 21, 2020)

Pickpocket. Robert Bresson. 1959. ⚅ Oh, I’ve got this both on DVD from Artificial Eye and bluray from Criterion… I’m watching the Criterion release. OH MY EMACS! Bresson is straight from the screen into my pretentious mind. Those affectless deliveries! The moral quandaries! Those French hairstyles! It’s just pure fabulousness. I’m there from the first … Continue reading OTB#48: Pickpocket

OTB#48: Pather Panchali

(March 20, 2020)

Pather Panchali. Satyajit Ray. 1955. ⚄ There aren’t a lot of movies on this list from outside the US/Europe/Japan/Hong Kong axis. Is this the only one? Haven’t made a survey, but it kinda looks like it? Uhm… Oh! It’s got Close-Up by Abbas Kiarostami, too. (From Iran.) That one’s really good. My guess is that … Continue reading OTB#48: Pather Panchali

OTB#48: Man with a Movie Camera

(March 19, 2020)

Man With A Movie Camera. Dziga Vertov. 1929. ⚅ I think… when English translators are translating from certain languages… they always end up with “scenario” being “SCENARIO” instead of “script”, which is what it means… At least that’s my impression after reading a book about movies translated from French to English the other month. And … Continue reading OTB#48: Man with a Movie Camera

OTB#48: Rear Window

(March 18, 2020)

Rear Window. Alfred Hitchcock. 1954. ⚅ I saw this movie just the other year (I think… on a plane?), but now I’ve got it in 2K, so I’m rewatching it. The movie is kinda perfect, but this 2K transfer isn’t. Or perhaps it was just this soft on the celluloid (or er whatever the young … Continue reading OTB#48: Rear Window

OTB#48: Goodfellas

(March 18, 2020)

Goodfellas. Martin Scorsese. 1990. ⚂ My most shocking, controversial opinion ever is this: I think Scorsese is overrated. I was amused by all the accolades The Irishman got when it came out. I mean, just look at the critics falling over themselves in trying to praise it more than everybody else. It’s a mediocre movie, … Continue reading OTB#48: Goodfellas

OTB#48: Shoah

(March 17, 2020)

Shoah. Claude Lanzmann. 1985. ⚂ I suspect I’ve seen this before: Was it serialised on TV in the 80s? But it’s just a perfect day for watching this nine hour kneeslapper, isn’t it? Oh, yeah, I have definitely seen this before: I remember the really annoying way it has of have people talking in Polish/Czech/whatever … Continue reading OTB#48: Shoah

OTB#48: Psycho

(March 14, 2020)

Psycho. Alfred Hitchcock. 1960. ⚅ Oooh! Psycho! I haven’t seen this for quite some time! And now in a restored 2K version! Oh, it’s not in “acedemy” ratio? That’s the way I remember it, but perhaps it was pan-and-scanned when I watched it on VHS in the 80s… Hitchcock was a fucking asshole and apparently … Continue reading OTB#48: Psycho

OTB#59: Blow Up

(March 14, 2020)

Blow Up. Michelangelo Antonioni. 1966. ⚄ Whu uh. I thought I had seen this movie before, but in my mind it’s in black and white, and it’s set in Italy. This is in colour and is set in the UK. From the first five minutes, I would have guessed that this was a Nick Roeg … Continue reading OTB#59: Blow Up

OTB#59: Gertrud

(March 13, 2020)

Gertrud. Carl Theodor Dreyer. 1964. ⚅ Oh, wow — a Dreyer movie from 1964? I had no idea he lived that long. Hm… Ah. It’s his final movie. I’ve seen the fabulous Joan of Arc he did back in the 20s, but not a lot of his later movies. This is some grade-A bizarre acting. … Continue reading OTB#59: Gertrud

OTB#59: Aguirre, Wrath of God

(March 12, 2020)

Aguirre, Wrath of God. Werner Herzog. 1972. ⚅ Wow, this is the only Herzog movie on the list… and it’s a Herzog movie I haven’t watched! Amazeballs. (Not really.) Anyway, this is so incredibly lush… every scenes seems out of control and fraught with danger. And Klaus Kinski is insane here. (And probably in real … Continue reading OTB#59: Aguirre, Wrath of God

OTB#59: A Woman Under the Influence

(March 12, 2020)

A Woman Under the Influence. John Cassavetes. 1974. ⚅ This is the fourth (and highest-rated) Cassavetes movie on the list of Best Movies Ever (Officially). OK, after watching all these Cassavetes movies, it’s hard not to be charmed by his aesthetic. I think that he’s thinking that he’s showing us actual, real, life, and everything … Continue reading OTB#59: A Woman Under the Influence

OTB#59: Il conformista

(March 12, 2020)

The Conformist. Bernardo Bertolucci. 1970. ☐ I am not a fan of Bertolucci, so I was happy to see that there’s only one movie by him on the “Best Of” list. And this is movie of his I haven’t seen before, so that’s even better. Perhaps this one will be great! There’s a whole bunch … Continue reading OTB#59: Il conformista

OTB#59: Blue Velvet

(March 9, 2020)

Blue Velvet. David Lynch. 1986. ⚅ I think I may only have seen this movie once before, which is odd, because I love David Lynch. On the other hand, I remember not being … thrilled? by this movie when I saw it. Which was probably on VHS in 1987 when I was 19. What I … Continue reading OTB#59: Blue Velvet

OTB#59: The Good, the Bad and the Ugly

(March 9, 2020)

The Good, The Bad and the Ugly. Sergio Leone. 1966. ⚄ Has anybody remarked on the similarity between the first trumpet thing (mow mow moooow) in the theme song and the Sad Trombone thing? No? Anyway, this is the first Leone movie in this blog series, and it’s a movie I’ve seen a couple times … Continue reading OTB#59: The Good, the Bad and the Ugly

OTB#59: La grande illusion

(March 9, 2020)

La Grande Illusion. Jean Renoir. 1937. ⚄ I watched this movie about five years ago, and it’s pretty spiffy. This blog post is part of the Officially The Best series.

OTB#67: Ugetsu Monogatari

(March 8, 2020)

Ugetsu. Kenji Mizoguchi. 1953. ⚂ I read a compilation of Cahiers de cinema (the 50s years) the other month, and one film that was mentioned a lot was this one. I haven’t seen it before… I haven’t seen it before, and it definitely has it going on. But… there’s a whiff of super-simplified morality play … Continue reading OTB#67: Ugetsu Monogatari

OTB#67: Badlands

(March 3, 2020)

Badlands. Terrence Malick. 1973. ⚄ As usual with American movies depicting teenagers, it’s always confusing: Are these older actors really supposed to be teenagers, or are they developmentally challenged adults? Spacek looks mid-20s, but acts like she’s aiming for twelve, and Sheen looks like he’s late-30s, but acts like aiming for fifteen? Or are they … Continue reading OTB#67: Badlands

OTB#67: Vivre sa vie

(February 24, 2020)

Vivre sa vie. Jean-Luc Godard. 1962. ⚅ Godard movies of this era are such a delight to watch. He’s having so much fun, being all mischievous and stuff. Like filming the actors from behind for the first five minutes, and fading the music in and out at seemingly random. He’s so punk. Every single scene … Continue reading OTB#67: Vivre sa vie

OTB#67: Blade Runner

(February 23, 2020)

Blade Runner. Ridley Scott. 1982. ⚃ Apparently, I didn’t really like this movie when I saw it some years back. It seems better in my head than a ⚃, so it’s quite possible I was too grouchy when I watched it. On the other hand, perhaps not? This blog post is part of the Officially … Continue reading OTB#67: Blade Runner

OTB#67: Sunset Blvd.

(February 23, 2020)

Sunset Boulevard. Billy Wilder. 1950. ⚄ It’s a Billy Wilder movie, so I assumed that this was a comedy. It’s not, and I’m a moron. That’s some supporting cast. This is one of three Billy Wilder movies on this “best of” list, and the only one I haven’t seen recently. (Or… ever? But it does … Continue reading OTB#67: Sunset Blvd.

OTB#67: Journey to Italy

(February 19, 2020)

Journey to Italy. Roberto Rossellini. 1954. ⚅ This 2K restoration looks great: Another class release by the British Film Institute. Your tax money at work, for some values of “your”. But… “English version”? Oh! They seem to be moving their mouths in a slightly English-looking way? Did Rossellini film several versions of this? (As usual … Continue reading OTB#67: Journey to Italy

OTB#67: In The Mood For Love

(February 18, 2020)

In The Mood For Love. Kar Wai Wong. 2000. ⚄ I saw this movie a couple of years ago, and I’m not rewatching it for this blog series. This blog post is part of the Officially The Best series.

OTB#67: Singin’ in the Rain

(February 17, 2020)

Singin’ in the Rain. Gene Kelly and Stanley Donen. 1952. ⚅ Hey! We’re no longer on #75! It was a 16-way split, so we stayed on the same number for a while. #67 is only split between… eight movies… Oh well. I’ve seen this movie a bunch of times, but it’s been a few years … Continue reading OTB#67: Singin’ in the Rain

OTB#75: M

(February 16, 2020)

M. Fritz Lang. 1931. ⚃ Oh! It’s German? I really thought I’d seen this before and that it was an American movie? Perhaps I was thinking of the 1951 Losey movie… but… I do remember Peter Lorre being in it? I’m all kinds of confused. Anyway, this is a very narrow movie. I mean, format … Continue reading OTB#75: M

OTB#75: Battleship Potemkin

(February 13, 2020)

Potemkin. Sergei M. Eisenstein. 1925. ⚅ I’ve been looking for the Pet Shop Boys version of this movie, but that’s apparently never been released, so I watched this movie while playing the CD and things probably didn’t line up perfectly… I mean, it can’t because silent movies have a kinda vague connection to timing anyway… … Continue reading OTB#75: Battleship Potemkin

OTB#75: The General

(February 11, 2020)

The General. Clyde Bruckman / Buster Keaton. 1926. ⚃ Lobster? Who are they, then? Over the years, the companies doing releases and restoration of classic (and not-so-classic) movies has been ever-changing. Let’s see… there’s Criterion, of course, who’s been going all along. And BFI, doing more and more stuff, presumably gummint-funded. But I was thinking … Continue reading OTB#75: The General

OTB#75: There Will Be Blood

(February 11, 2020)

There Will Be Blood. Paul Thomas Anderson. 2007. ⚂ Is this one of those movies designed for an actor that acts big to be allowed to be totally over the top so that he can win an Oscar (see all male actor Oscar wins ever)? Oh it is: The standard joke is that the craft … Continue reading OTB#75: There Will Be Blood

OTB#75: A Clockwork Orange

(February 6, 2020)

A Clockwork Orange. Stanley Kubrick. 1971. ⚂ I’ve seen this before, but it was in my teens and I don’t really remember much about the actual movie. But everything from it is part of popular culture now, so it all seems so familiar anyway. Surely those bar tables aren’t very practical. Virtually no critics thought … Continue reading OTB#75: A Clockwork Orange

OTB#75: Angst essen Seele auf

(February 6, 2020)

Fear Eats The Soul. Rainer Werner Fassbinder. 1973. ⚄ This is the only Fassbinder on the “best of” list, and it’s a movie I can’t recall seeing anybody mention before, so I’m excited. Well, some things just aren’t believable here! Like the bartender not knowing how to pour beer! That’s a lot of foam, dude. … Continue reading OTB#75: Angst essen Seele auf

OTB#75: Hidden

(February 5, 2020)

Hidden. Michael Haneke. 2005. ⚃ I talked about this movie here. It’s the best Haneke movie I’ve seen, so I’m not shocked it ended up on this list of movies. I had expected Amour to show up either on this list or the critics’ list, but I realise now that that movie was released after … Continue reading OTB#75: Hidden

OTB#75: The Shining

(February 5, 2020)

The Shining. Stanley Kubrick. 1980. ⚄ Yesterday I watched Salò, and I may have given the impression that it’s more interesting than it is. It isn’t interesting. There’s no reason to watch it; it’s just audience abuse. So tonight (while waiting for the dinner to cook) I’m watching a much cosier movie. I don’t think … Continue reading OTB#75: The Shining

OTB#75: The Seventh Seal

(February 4, 2020)

The Seventh Seal. Ingmar Bergman. 1957. ⚅ I watched this movie two years ago, and it’s fabulous, of course. This blog post is part of the Officially The Best series.

OTB#75: Salò o le 120 giornate di Sodoma

(February 3, 2020)

Salò, or the 120 Days of Sodom. Pier Paolo Pasolini. 1975. ⚁ Well, this isn’t a movie I’ve been looking forward to seeing… I’m so over the whole épatering la bourgeoisie thing. Somewhat interestingly, the critics and the directors are really divergent on this one, only getting to the 202nd place in the critics’ poll. … Continue reading OTB#75: Salò o le 120 giornate di Sodoma

OTB#75: Kes

(February 3, 2020)

Kes. Ken Loach. 1969. ⚃ I’ve seen this before… like, a handful of years ago? I did not much like it then: The relentless awfulness of the boy’s life is… relentless? (I have a way with words.) But perhaps I misremember. Especially now that I’ve got a 2K copy of the movie. Heh heh: The … Continue reading OTB#75: Kes

OTB#75: Mulholland Dr

(February 2, 2020)

Mulholland Drive. David Lynch. 2001. ⚅ I’ve seen this several times before, of course… but now it’s in 2K! I adore Lynch, but I wonder: Why Mulholland Dr. and not… like… Inland Empire? There’s two Lynch Movies on this list: Blue Velvet (duh) and this. Perhaps the attraction of this movie is that it’s, well, … Continue reading OTB#75: Mulholland Dr

OTB#75: Husbands

(February 2, 2020)

Husbands. John Cassavetes. 1970. ⚀ I watched this movie a few years back, and I really loathed it. I can’t quite remember why, but I was probably right? Was is something about that interminable dinner scene? Hm… This blog post is part of the Officially The Best series.

OTB#75: The Wild Bunch

(February 2, 2020)

The Wild Bunch. Sam Peckinpah. 1969. ⚂ Oh, I’ve got this on an old 6Mbps DVD release… I should have bought a 2K version, because it looks like that would have been really nice… OK; I’m going through all the rest of the movies to see whether they’re suspiciously small files and re-buying them. But … Continue reading OTB#75: The Wild Bunch

OTB#75: Los Olvidados

(February 1, 2020)

Los olvidados. Luis Buñuel. 1950. ⚄ I didn’t know that Buñuel made straight-up sappy movies like this. This feels like it could have been any Italian neorealist movie of its time. Only set in Mexico. Not surprising: Los Olvidados was largely disparaged by the Mexican press upon its release. It’s a very picaresque look at … Continue reading OTB#75: Los Olvidados

OTB#75: Jaws

(January 30, 2020)

Jaws. Steven Spielberg. 1975. ⚂ This blog post is part of the Officially The Best series. I assume this has been voted the 75th best movie of all time by directors is because of the technical qualities. I mean, nobody can argue against how effective the “doon duun” scary music is. It’s beyond perfect. And … Continue reading OTB#75: Jaws

OTB#91: Pierrot le Fou

(January 30, 2020)

Pierrot le fou. Jean-Luc Godard. 1965. ⚅ I did not re-watch this movie for this blog series, but you can read about it here. This blog post is part of the Officially The Best series.

OTB#91: Un chien andalou

(January 30, 2020)

Un Chien Andalou. Luis Buñuel. 1929. ⚄ I have never seen this, but I’ve seen shots from every scene from this movie in various articles over the years. So I knew when to hold a pillow before my face, and I still haven’t seen That Scene. This is Luis Buñuel’s famous exercise in épater la … Continue reading OTB#91: Un chien andalou

OTB#91: Chinatown

(January 30, 2020)

Chinatown. Roman Polanski. 1974. ⚄ I’ve seen this before, but I was like… twelve. The only thing I remember is the shocking ending. This is like a proper mystery movie! With lots of detecting and conspiracies and stuff. I did not remember that at all. Very moody. Nicholson is great, of course, as the somewhat … Continue reading OTB#91: Chinatown

OTB#91: La Maman et la putain

(January 28, 2020)

*gasp* Shoes in bed! La maman et la putain. Jean Eustache. 1973. ⚄ All the movies on the list of the best movies (officially) are readily available… except this one. The only legit source I could find it from was this $80 VHS tape, and since my VHS player i… somewhere… I bought a bootleg … Continue reading OTB#91: La Maman et la putain

OTB#91: Beau Travail

(January 27, 2020)

Beau Travail. Claire Denis. 1999. ⚅ Somebody described Denis as “the best living director today” a few years back, and that’s what it takes to get on the Official The Best list if you’re a woman. (At #91.) There are no further female directors on the list. I’ve seen this movie several times before, and … Continue reading OTB#91: Beau Travail

OTB#91: Opening Night

(January 27, 2020)

Opening Night. John Cassavetes. 1977. ⚅ Gina Rowlands! I love her. I’ve had my doubts about Cassavetes before. I mean: But this is brilliant. Everybody behaves so awfully towards the Rowlands character (including the Cassavetes character (her husband, after all) slapping her), that it starts getting… is like Cassavetes trying to say something to her? … Continue reading OTB#91: Opening Night

OTB#91: The Gold Rush

(January 25, 2020)

The Gold Rush. Charles Chaplin. 1925. ⚄ Man, this has been beautifully restored by Criterion. It’s a 2K release, and it looks super sharp. OK, some of the shots are a bit blurry, but it generally looks great. Much better than the transfers I saw back when I was a child. Because I think it’s … Continue reading OTB#91: The Gold Rush

OTB#91: The Deer Hunter

(January 25, 2020)

The Deer Hunter. Michael Cimino. 1978. ⚂ This won all the Oscars, which immediately makes me suspicious. And I have seen it before, but I was probably… twelve…? at the time (probably got it on VHS some years after the release). And I remember absolutely nothing about it except that it’s sweaty and there’s some … Continue reading OTB#91: The Deer Hunter

OTB#91: Zéro de Conduite

(January 24, 2020)

Zéro de conduite: Jeunes diables au collège. Jean Vigo. 1933. ⚃ Since there are 16 movies tying for “last place” on this top 100 (all at #91), it means that I’ve got some leeway in choosing the order of movies. So the next film alphabetically was The Deer Hunter, but that’s over three hours long!? … Continue reading OTB#91: Zéro de Conduite

OTB#91: L’argent

(January 20, 2020)

L’Argent. Robert Bresson. 1983. ⚅ I blogged about this movie here. I should probably re-watch it, but I’m not. This blog post is part of the Officially The Best series.

OTB#91: The Killing of a Chinese Bookie

(January 20, 2020)

The Killing of a Chinese Bookie. John Cassavetes. 1976. ⚂ OK, the weirdest thing about the list of 100 best movies I’m doing is that Cassavetes has four movies on it. I mean, there’s nobody on here with more movies than Cassavetes. I wonder whether that’s an artefact of the age of the participating voting … Continue reading OTB#91: The Killing of a Chinese Bookie

OTB#91: Sans Soleil

(January 20, 2020)

Sans Soleil. Chris Marker. 1983. ⚃ The DVD of this I bought has La jetée as the main attraction, and this movie as the extra. Which makes sense, because I’ve heard of La Jetée, but I haven’t heard of this movie. Which makes me excited. I really love the central conceit of this movie: It’s … Continue reading OTB#91: Sans Soleil

OTB#91: Don’t Look Now

(January 18, 2020)

Don’t Look Now. Nicolas Roeg. 1973. ⚄ Oh, man. I have no recollection of having seen this movie, but every scene there’s a kind of primeval recognition. Could I have seen this, like, on TV as a child or something? It’s deja vu all the way for me. I must have been scared shitless while … Continue reading OTB#91: Don’t Look Now

OTB#91: Soy Cuba

(January 18, 2020)

I Am Cuba. Mikhail Kalatozov. 1964. ⚅ This is a movie I was completely unaware of, and I don’t seem to be the only one: It really is a neglected classic. It’s so weird! Movies this weird don’t usually end up on lists like these. Is it recently rediscovered or something? I’ve never seen cinematography … Continue reading OTB#91: Soy Cuba

OTB#91: L’Année dernière à Marienbad

(January 16, 2020)

L’Année dernière à Marienbad. Alain Resnais. 1961. ⚅ I’ve seen this at least a couple of times before. The last time was in 2015 according to Emacs… I regret not rebuying it on 2K. It’s such a beautiful film, and I’ve got it on a windowboxed DVD, so the resolution is like nil by nought. … Continue reading OTB#91: L’Année dernière à Marienbad

OTB#91: Le Samouraï

(January 16, 2020)

Le Samouraï. Jean-Pierre Melville. 1967. ⚃ I have apparently bought the Spanish version of this, but fortunately there’s also a French soundtrack. But no English subtitles! Subscene to the rescue! What would we do without pirates? Just watch Michael Bay movies? Oh, wow. Alain Delon. I don’t think I’ve seen any films by Melville? But … Continue reading OTB#91: Le Samouraï

Officially The Best

(January 16, 2020)

I’ve always wanted to watch all the movies on the Sight and Sound list of movies. First of all, it’s a poll taken of working directors, and that in itself makes it interesting. Secondly, the film that won was neither Citizen Kane nor Vertigo, which immediately makes it seem more relevant. I’ve jokingly referred to … Continue reading Officially The Best