So, I realised that I haven’t checked back in for a while on my goal of watching 50 movies that are new to me this year. Despite being behind schedule, there are quite a few to add to the list since last time I posted, so I’m not going to go through them one by one. Instead, I’ll pick out a few and comment as it comes to me.
First though, here is a list of the movies I’ve watched since the last update:
The Bicycle Thief
Jesse Stone: Innocents Lost
The Big Bounce
To Wong Foo
All Good Things
The 40-Year-Old Virgin
Lover Come Back
The Shop Around The Corner
The Social Network
(Bringing my total so far up to 24).
As I was typing out that list, I noticed that I had no idea what some of those movies were, and even had to Google them to be sure I hadn’t made a mistake. They obviously made a great impression on me. So, perhaps as a tip from that, I would recommend avoiding: The Big Bounce, Knowing, and All Good Things. Although now I remember it, Knowing is good for some classic cheesy, apocalypse-themed, over-the-top Nic Cage acting for a laugh. It’s like a genre all of its own.I was particularly excited about Jesse Stone: Innocents Lost. It was the first installment of the series that I actually had to wait for and watched on TV as it premiered. I told you it was exciting. Once more we’re brought into the familiar world of Paradise, Mass., with the usual faces greeting our day. Except for the new police chief, who’s the son-in-law of a local councilman and a nuisance to Stone. Even after a period of involuntary retirement, Stone finds himself investigating the death of a friend and once again, shows why he’s the man for the job. Even if he doesn’t think so. As always, Selleck and his moustache didn’t disappoint, and Innocents Lost is another gem to add to the growing basket of Jesse Stone splendor. Long may he live. The Strand is a little known movie from 2005 about the weird and wonderful world of Venice Beach, CA. I think it is actually only available to watch online, and you can find it here: strandvenice.com. I have to admit, I mostly watched it because the wonderful James Morrison is in it (albeit briefly). But, it turned out to be a well-made, intriguing look inside Venice, CA and the quirky people who make up the various facets of its character. The movie makes use of locals as well as actors of varying experience, and was a worthy project in my opinion. Finally, I’d like to give special mention to Lover Come Back, starring Rock Hudson and Doris Day. Every summer, the wonderful city I call home, Fredericton, New Brunswick, has an ‘Under the Stars Classic Film Series’. For 8 or 9 weeks we’re treated to some great movies in the beautiful open air, a stone’s throw from the St. John River. And did I mention it’s completely free? One of the movies on show this year was Lover Come Back. Being partial to classic movies, I tend to go and see them whatever is playing, but this one I especially enjoyed. It was genuinely funny and can even keep modern audiences enthralled. We follow the humorous competitive antics between two advertising execs (Jerry, played by Hudson, and Carol, played by Day), and in a series of unfortunate events for Carol, when she finally meets Jerry she doesn’t realise who he is. Jerry, a keen enthusiast of alcohol and women, of course takes advantage of this to one-up his fiery competitor. Hilarity ensues, and well, you can probably guess the rest. Worth watching if only for the great performances and the sly innuendos (or not so sly, in some cases!).
I could say much more about some of the others on my list, but well honestly, I have stuff to do. So, as a quick tip I’d recommend checking out The Bicycle Thief, Fargo, and Adaptation. And, To Wong Foo and Bridesmaids if you want a good laugh. Leave a comment if you’ve seen any of these movies, and let me know what you think.
Now onto the other half of my target for the year…