What I Watched
At the Theater
La La Land
Dir. Damien Chazelle, 2016
Not an accident that this is here two weeks in a row. I went back to see it for a second time on New Year's Day. Loved it even more the second time. In fact, it's now in my top few of 2016 and in the running for my list of all-time favorites. Full
Rogue One: A Star Wars Story
dir. Gareth Edwards, 2016
I found this one, though fun, to be incredibly uneven, even boring in the first hour. I was nearly asleep in the theater. The final act, a massive chase/battle sequence is a blast, though, and I ended up digging the end.
On Home Video
Born to be Blue
dir. Robert Budreau, 2016
Chet Baker is a fascinating figure. Ethan Hawke's portrayal of him in this highly fictionalized rendition of his late-60s comeback is likewise and Oscar-worthy (too bad he's nowhere to be seen in the awards conversation...). Anyway, he works, and a nice mixture of visual styles mostly work as well. But the movie loses track of its early, highly-engaging film-within-a-film structure and Jazz-infused pacing too often, sometimes slowing to the level of a standard biopic. It's as if writer-director Robert Budreau put together a Jazz ensemble of narratives but only one or two of the players is any good.
(FT) = First Time
(RW) = Re-Watch
Show Runners: Carlton Cuse and Damon Lindelof (2004-2010)
Re-watched Season 1, started season 2. It's so comforting. My wife and sister-in-law and I are doing the whole thing. Sister-in-law for the first time. I'm so jealous of her.
Show Runner: Vince Gilligan (2008-2014)
This show puts you through the ringer. The wife and I have slowly been working through it. On the back end of season 4 right now. Such a masterfully written, directed, and acted piece of television. Nothing else like it. Nothing every will be.
Sonia at A Film a Day has a solid 2016 recap.
Erin at Cinematic Scribblings caught Resnais' Last Year at Marienbad in her Blind Spot. I hate it. She sort of dug it.
Brittany at Rambling Film reviews Fences, which I still need to see.
Steven at Surrender to the Void reviewed Mel Brooks' brilliant, under-sung High Anxiety.
Scottie at All the Hits So Far makes Golden Globe Predictions.
I have watched 3 movies in 2017, so far.
Re-Watched - 1
First-Timers - 2
2016 Releases - 45
2017 Releases - 0