A year ago, I set a challenge for myself: Each week, I would watch one film I had never seen before. No restrictions on age, genre, or theme. That would make fifty-two films over the course of 2016. I came down to the wire (I finished the last movie at 11:05 p.m. on December 31st), but: mission accomplished.
Here’s a little slice of my learnings:
- Vertigo isn’t the best film of all time; it’s not even the best Hitchcock film of all time.
Sorry, Sight & Sound. It’s really good, but not that good. The Saul Bass poster might be the best movie poster ever made, though.
- My tastes are very predictable, and predictably biased…
I’m a sucker for superheroes, movies about movies, period pieces that star James McAvoy, and anything Hayao Miyazaki has ever touched. Wes Anderson’s brand of whimsy really works on me. I think animation is a special kind of magic and movies about disaffected, entitled white dudes are universally overrated.
- …Except when they’re not.
I was reeeeeeeeaal skeptical about The Raid. I thought I’d fall in love with Snowpiercer. I figured nostalgia would paper over the worst bits of An American Tail, since I loved the sequel so much. I didn’t know if I’d fully understand the appeal of 10 Cloverfield Lane. I was wrong on all counts.
- There are so many good movies in the world, you guys.
I didn’t even make it through a fraction of the films I wanted to watch. I still haven’t seen The Maltese Falcon, or Seven Samurai, or Schindler’s List, or most of the films in Oscar contention for 2016. My Netflix queue is probably longer than it was when I started.
So here’s my strange little list, cobbled together based on what was playing in the art theater, streaming on Netflix, and available at the library.
Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind (2004)
Ex Machina (2015)
The Godfather (1972)
The Wind Rises (2013)
All the President’s Men (1976)
9 to 5 (1980)
An American Tail (1986)
10 Cloverfield Lane (2016)
Dr. Strangelove, or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb (1964)
The Raid (2011)
The Usual Suspects (1995)
Safety Last! (1923)
A Cat in Paris (2010)
Captain America: Civil War (2016)
Becoming Jane (2007)
Rear Window (1954)
X-Men: Apocalypse (2016)
The Boxtrolls (2014)
Silver Linings Playbook (2012)
Jurassic World (2015)
American Beauty (1999)
The Grand Budapest Hotel (2014)
Steve Jobs (2015)
Star Trek Beyond (2016)
Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation (2015)
Kubo and the Two Strings (2016)
Sunset Boulevard (1950)
The Secret of Kells (2009)
Top Gun (1986)
Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping (2016)
Pulp Fiction (1994)
A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night (2014)
Shakespeare in Love (1998)
Doctor Strange (2016)
Rogue One (2016)
A Single Man (2009)