Last week’s Friday Favourites post came out of a social media challenge that I was forced to take on board. This week is a similar thing. This time the challenge was:
Post a still from a film that’s influenced me over the next 10 days. Every day I’ll nominate one person to do the same.
Normally if someone tags me on a Facebook thing I just pretend I didn’t see it and walk away. Selfie challenges, Ice Bucket challenges, you name it, I’m avoiding it. But I haven’t got to where I am today by missing the chance to show off my love of films. So I did it. Even though I knew that trying to whittle down the list down to just 10 films would almost beak my brain. But I did it? Did anybody care? Nah. But nobody really cares about this blog and I’ve been doing this for nearly 10 years. It’s part of my charm.
This weekend saw the 77th Golden Globe awards take place. Unusually, the winners were pretty much the people you’d expect them to be. Well, apart from Olivia Colman winning for her work on The Crown. I love Colman in anything but she wasn’t given anything to do in that series. I know the Queen isn’t exactly a highly dramatic character but she was the least interesting character in her own show. But the most interesting thing to come out of the evening was the massive snub of Netflix’s two major award contenders. Neither Marriage Story or The Irishman walked away with any of the awards they’d been nominated for. Was this just a vicious snub by the HFPA or should Netflix be worried for the Academy Awards? If not even Scorsese is a guaranteed winner then who knows what will happen? Although, I’m sure Sam Mendes is a deserving winner. 1917 looks fucking amazing. But Netflix really had put massive work into getting the Oscar they so clearly deserved with Roma. Is this really proof that, no matter what they do, Netflix will never be accepted by the awards committees?
Today really does mark the end of Christmas. I’m back at work this morning after an 8-day break. It’s just flown by. It obviously didn’t help that I spent so many of the days in bed. But I’ve had a lovely time off and it’s been so nice to actually have a Christmas holiday for a change. I’m not looking forward to getting up in the morning. I’ve become too used to being able to get up whenever I want. I confess that I’ve been somewhat leisurely when it comes to getting out of bed. I set the alarm for 8 o’clock and get dressed at about 10. It does mean that a 7am wake-up call seems hellishly early. Though, I am looking forward to going back. If nothing else, it will mean that I might finally be able to work out what bloody day it is. I hate that period between Christmas and New Year when you don’t know what’s going. When every day fees like Sunday. When you can’t even work it out by watching TV because the schedules are all fucked and they’re only playing films. I love Christmas but I can’t wait until life feels a bit more normal again.
Looking back on my favourite films of 2018 has been tough. I definitely think I was a little generous with some of them. I mean, what was I doing putting Solo in my top 10? When I remember that now, I only remember bad things about it. I might have to rewatch it to make a final judgment. But I certainly think my ratings have been harsher this year. Last year I gave out 5* reviews as if it was an end of season sale. This year, I still don’t think I’ve quite cracked it but I think I’m getting there. Though I did end up with an awful lot of 4* films. 9 in total. I should have written a separate list of those films. And they were all films that I did really enjoy but, I guess, it wasn’t quite as much as these 10. But that’s the joy of criticism. It’s a personal preference that you offer to the world. I’m never one to suggest that my analysis of a film is the only way to look at it. I just like writing it down. Maybe some of you will get something from that but probably not. It won’t stop me doing it. Anyway, I’m starting to babble, so I’d better get on with it. Here are my top 10 films of 2019.
During my second or third year of university, Coraline was playing at our campus cinema. I say cinema. What I’m actually talking about is a lecture hall that had a huge projector in the back and really uncomfortable seats. Don’t get me wrong, it was really useful to have somewhere that showed films on campus but it was hardly a comfortable experience. But I still went with some of my flatmates. On the bus on the way home, we were sat in front of a group of people who’d also been there. One member of the group was loudly and confidently saying “you can tell it’s directed by Tim Burton. It was so similar to The Nightmare Before Christmas.” It certainly took all of my self-control to not turn around call him an idiot. I feel bad for Henry Selick. He’s been responsible for so many great films but he so rarely gets the credit. The fact that The Nightmare Before Christmas is also called Tim Burton’s The Nightmare Before Christmas is a bit crazy. I guess it was a marketing strategy and, if it was, it bloody worked. But it does mean Selick gets forgotten about.
Watching two versions of The AddamsFamily this week gave me a huge hit of nostalgia this week. Addams Family Values was one of the first films that I remember watching again and again. It was definitely a childhood favourite. There’s a lot to be said about nostalgia and how it changes your perspective on things. I know that many of the films I loved as a kid aren’t actually that great but that doesn’t spoil them. I can still watch all of those films as a grown woman and love them as much as I did then. So, having spent ages sitting here wondering what to write about this week, I’ve decided to discuss some of my favourite childhood films that still bring me joy. This is only a small list because I could go on and on forever with this. I’m leaving some for the next time I lose inspiration and make a part 2.
With the release of every new Quentin Tarantino fims there comes the same old gender discussion. Is he a massive sexist who refuses to give women ay real place in his films? This time it all kicked off when people started complaining about Margot Robbie being given so few lines in Once Upon a Time in… Hollywood. Does Robbie get short shrift? Yeah. But it’s not as if the film was even from Sharon Tate’s perspective anyway. It was a film about a male friendship that skirted around the star’s tragic death. It wasn’t supposed to explore Tate’s life but give an image of her as a person. It was a fairy tale where she was the kind, sweet, and promising young woman who didn’t deserve to have her life taken from her so brutally. Robbie and Tarantino manage to prove who Tate was without words. I’m not here to say whether Tarantino’s treatment of women is positive or negative but, in this case, it seems like a needless argument. Besides, since when is the only indication of a strong female character the number of lines they speak? As someone who has trouble speaking up at times, I’d say silence isn’t necessarily an indication of weakness.
On Tuesday I posted my spoiler free review of Avengers Endgame. I wanted to make sure that anyone silly enough to come to my blog before they watched the film wouldn’t see anything that ruined any aspect of that film for them. But, I also have a lot of feelings and ideas about it. So, just like I did with Infinity War last year, I’m also posting my spoiler-filled post about the film. Last year I did a separate post from my TBT but I wanted to dedicate most of this week to this film. It feels that important. Plus, what film is good enough to pair with such a meaningful film? And, I want to do a final post on Friday without getting too post heavy this week. So, I hope you’ll forgive me this once.
You may have noticed that I didn’t post a Sunday Rundown yesterday. That was mostly because, after a bad night’s sleep, I fell asleep before writing it. But it was also a tactical choice. After all, it’s that time of year when I need to start posting my Top 10 lists of the year. So, instead of wasting your time with a rundown of the week, I’m going to waste your time with a rundown of the year. Yep, what a 12 months it’s been. I’ve turned 30… not sure I mentioned it. I’ve also managed to review 54 films. It’s not the greatest number, I know, but it at least goes some way towards explaining why I didn’t make it through more books. I’ve always loved films and it was film criticism that made me start blogging. So, I guess that’s always been my focus. And it’s something I way more passionate about than most of my friends. I tend to be a little hyperbolic about films whilst most of them are just happy to watch anything. It makes me seem kind of psychotic. So, here are the 10 films that changed my life this year. Feel free to comment with your own.