Dec 24, 2015

365 Days, 365 Movies: October & November

Grace Kelly: Fancy
It's been a crazy 11 months, but October and November finally saw me meeting my goal of watching 365 movies in 2015. Since the majority of the films I'd watched before October were from 1990-2015 (with over 150 coming from the last two years),  I thought I would focus more on 'classic' cinema for October and November, particularly old musicals (because Netflix) the films of Katharine Hepburn (who holds the record for most Oscars won) and Grace Kelly. It ended up being a fun couple of months filled with adorable old-timey accents.

I also got to pick my 365th movie, which I chose with a little trepidation.  I decided to watch two of my favorite movies, Rope and Home for the Holidays, as my lead-up movies, and I decided to watch Citizen Kane as my 365th. I'd never seen it, and people seem to like it, so it seemed like a good choice.

29 Films in October, 343 Total in 2015
New Releases are Bolded

About Alex (2014)
Amy Schumer: Live at the Apollo (2015)  Not as good as her show, but decent
Anchors Aweigh (1945)
Butcher's Wife, The (1991)
Confessions of a Shopaholic (2009)
Confessions of a Teenage Drama Queen (2004)
Daddy Long Legs (1955)
The Final Girls (2015)  Really entertaining and smarter than it needs to be
Goosebumps (2015) - Just good fun
High Society (1956)
Hocus Pocus (1993)
Kingpin (1996)
Little Giants (1994)
The Martian (2015)  Better than Interstellar
Masters of the Universe (1987)
Me and Earl and the Dying Girl (2015)
Move Over, Darling (1963)
A Night at the Roxbury (1998)
The Nightmare Before Christmas (1993)
On The Town (1949)
The Overnight (2015)
Perfect (1985)
Ricki and the Flash (2015)  Terrible, unoriginal, and so long
Sicario (2015)  Hard-to-watch yet mesmerizing at the same time, and Emily Blunt is amazing
The Swan (1956)
Take Me Out to the Ballgame (1949)
Theodore Rex (1995)
To Catch a Thief (1955)
The Unauthorized Beverly Hills: 90210 Story (2015)

29 Films in November,
372 TOTAL IN 2015
New Releases are Bolded

Absolutely Anything (2015)
Adam's Rib (1949)
The Addams Family (1991)
Alice Adams (1935)
Bringing up Baby (1938)
The Brink’s Job (1978)
Citizen Kane (1941)  Stylistically impressive and narratively brave, but hella boring: Number 365!!
The Colossus of New York (1958)
Desk Set (1957)
Father of the Bride Part II (1995)
Hackers (1995)
Home for the Holidays (1995)
John Mulaney: The Comeback Kid (2015)
Lifeforce (1985)
Louis C.K. Live at the Beacon Theater (2011)
A Muppet Christmas Carol (1992)
Naomi and Ely’s No Kiss List (2015)  boo.
Pat and Mike (1952)
The Philadelphia Story (1940)
Pixar: Short Films Collection (2015)
Pocahontas (1995)
Recess: Taking the Fifth Grade (2003)
Rocky (1976)
Rope (1948)
Someone Like You (2001)
Spectre (2015)  A weak entry in the 007 franchise
Unfinished Business (2015)  Ugh, this movie was terrible
Volunteers (1985)
Young Frankenstein (1974)

With the 365 film goal complete, I moved into December with the new goal of 400 films in one year. Because I'm crazy!

Aziz Ansari tones his shtick down for
 Master of None
I haven't written about TV for a while, but don't mistake that for not watching television. In fact, I made a point to watch a ton of new television series that came out this Fall. Of the new shows, there were four that were easy favorites:

Master of None
Aziz Ansari's new Netflix series is occasionally clumsily written and often poorly acted, but it's hella ambitious in scope and one of the most personal series created this year. It's so rare to see a fully formed Asian-American character on television, and his insightful critiques on age, race, and relationships are engaging and welcome. Maybe, once he gets out from behind Woody Allen's stylistic shadow, he'll be able to create something truly revelatory. Still, I can't wait for Season 2.

The Grinder
Rob Lowe's new series is so flipping funny, you guys. Once you get past the ridiculous title you find a smartly written sitcom with well-drawn characters and inventive stories. It's the funniest new show this year.

Crazy Ex-Girlfriend
Another series that's way better than its name implies. CEG is charming and wackadoodle and delightful as heck. Co-creator/star Rachel Bloom is a revelation, able to ping-pong around all the emotional extremes that she has to portray. Plus, it's all a hilarious musical. So, watch it? Now?

Jessica Jones
I haven't started to look back at my year of television watching, but it's quite possible that this Netflix series (the newest output from Marvel) might be my favorite show of the year.  Well-written and acted, with another incredible turn from the always delightful Krysten Ritter (the titular Bitch in the very much missed Don't Trust the B---- in Apartment 23) and wonderful performances from the entire cast. There are so few weak points. It even has the best villain that Marvel has produced, Kilgrave (David Tennant). It brings up interesting ideas about rape and consent while also being a hella fun superhero series.
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