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Best films so far in 05
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Cinephile
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Post26 Sep 2005 08:18 pm
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Cinderella Man for me.

geez...i was just taking a look at some of the films i've seen this year that were released in 05. i rate all of them. there haven't been too many good ones so far.

i liked staw wars, batman was decent, sin city was nice. but other than Cinderella Man and star wars, nothing really stood out for me so far.

usually what happens is that i don't get to see all of them...and in the next year i see the good ones i missed.
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Post26 Sep 2005 11:02 pm
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Not sure about "best" yet, but just saw An Unfinished Life and it was pretty good. It could contend, at least, I think.
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Post26 Sep 2005 11:39 pm
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It's true. This has been a pretty tepid year for movies. 2004 totally threw me off guard because for the past 10 years or so it's been every odd numbered year has been awesome for me and the even years kind of lacking. 1999 was cool, I LOVED 2001, 2003 was pretty good, and then 2004 was actually a really good year at the movies as well. Then 2005 comes up and makes up for it all by pretty much blowing.

It's right up there with 2000 or 1996 where the best The Academy could come up with for the awards were Gladiator, Jerry Maguire, and Erin Brockovich.

I've actually made a conscious effort NOT to look over the movies I've seen in 2005, but it's getting towards the end of the year so it's time to start thinking of my EoY article. Gotta start renting the movies I missed and making sure I catch the important ones still in theaters.

I totally agree with Cinderella Man. It is certainly in my top 5.

Other high points include: 40 Year Old Virgin, Howl's Moving Castle, Batman Begins, Millions (which is right up there with Cinderella Man), Mr. and Mrs. Smith, Star Wars, and The Interpreter. Been a sickly year for the arthouse film, though there's a few I really wanna see. I've got some in my queue to rent.

Still though....meager offerings all around.
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Post27 Sep 2005 04:17 am
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Getting started on your article early there Mac. Razz
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Kernan
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Post27 Sep 2005 07:34 am
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Best of the year so far for me was Batman Begins closely followed by the documentary Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room, Sin City and Star Wars. I also really liked Millions a terrific family film even more rare for being non-animated. Was Woody Allen's Melinda and Melinda released this year or last because that one is on my list along with Crash and I kid you not Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants.
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Nate
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Post27 Sep 2005 09:17 am
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Kernan, I believe ya, Traveling Pants was cute and heartfelt and very well acted. The problem with me compiling a best of the year list so far is that I feel I haven't seen some of the worthier movies of the year like Murderball, Grizzly Man, The 40-Year-Old Virgin, Me, You, And Everyone We Know, Millions, the Enron doc, Howl's Moving Castle, A History of Violence, and Broken Flowers. But to go along with the crowd, my list for 2005 so far would include--

Batman Begins, Crash, Mr. and Mrs. Smith, Layer Cake, Sin City, Inside Deep Throat.

As far as years go, I think the greatest year for film (besides the obvious 1939) was 1999; so many truly excellent and even groundbreaking movies released like, American Beauty, Run Lola Run, The Iron Giant, Toy Story 2, Fight Club, Magnolia, Dogma, Princess Mononoke, The South Park movie, The Red Violin, The Sixth Sense, The Blair Witch Project, Being John Malkovich, The Talented Mr. Ripley, Election, The Matrix, Three Kings, Go, The Green Mile, Office Space, Boys Don't Cry, The Insider. Wow. What a year. I'm sure I'm forgetting some as well.
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Post27 Sep 2005 09:28 am
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Nate wrote:

As far as years go, I think the greatest year for film (besides the obvious 1939) was 1999; so many truly excellent and even groundbreaking movies released like, American Beauty, Run Lola Run, The Iron Giant, Toy Story 2, Fight Club, Magnolia, Dogma, Princess Mononoke, The South Park movie, The Red Violin, The Sixth Sense, The Blair Witch Project, Being John Malkovich, The Talented Mr. Ripley, Election, The Matrix, Three Kings, Go, The Green Mile, Boys Don't Cry, The Insider. Wow. What a year. I'm sure I'm forgetting some as well.


I love you Nate. I couldn't agree more. Except for Magnolia. --hiss--

2001 means more to me, because it had some movies I absolutely unabashedly adore like the first LotR, Moulin Rouge, Ghost World, Royal Tenenbaums, and Enemy at the Gates...but 99 is a fucking close second. Definitely two of the best years of our lifetime and without a doubt the best two years since I became heavily immersed in film.

And Kernan, Enron is an EXCELLENT documentary and I would have no problem with it getting Best Doc award, though it likely won't. Sarah and I saw it at Full Frame and I keep meaning to review it. Murderball was one of the FEW docs that got a lot of buzz that we missed this year...total bummer. Gotta catch that before the year is out. Bearing Witness was also very good.

Short Documentary I'd give to Gray Matter by the fella who made Some Kind of Monster, Berlinger.

The absolute BEST documentary I saw this year actually won last year's best short documentary ocscar and I didn't even know it. They were "re-premiering" at Full Frame. Children of Leningradsky. That was a POWERFUL film. So much so that I corresponded with the makers for awhile. It really should have been made feature length I felt.

Also, Sarah and I just got a copy of Melinda and Melinda from the Fox Media people. We haven't seen it. Gonna watch it soon. We also got Millions! Woo.
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Post27 Sep 2005 08:25 pm
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Update: Freaking Serenity, holy crow.
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Post27 Sep 2005 08:42 pm
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i'll probably eventually see the constant gardner, broken flower, jarhead, Aeon Flux, The Chronicles of Narnia, king kong, the producers, zathura, harry potter


constant gardner is probaly good. broken flower is supposed to be good. flux could be good scifi. chronicles will tell a nice yarn probably...i read the books in grade school. KING KONG better not be good...it better be very good, zathura might be interesting. harry potter never disappoints.

thus....the good films always always get jammed at the end of the year because of oscars.
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Post27 Sep 2005 08:42 pm
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So far this year:


Using the star system for only a moment:

***:
The Constant Gardener
Unleashed
Crah
Ong Bak
Kung Fu Hustle
Mr. and Mrs. Smith

***1/2:

The Interpreter
War of the Worlds
Star Wars
Sin City (***1/2 or ****, I haven't picked yet)

****:

Batman Begins
2046

2046 is still my top pick of the year.

My personal favorite year was 2001. Thinking back (if I'm not mistaken) I believe it included the first LOTR, Moulin Rouge, Memento, Vanilla Sky, Mulholland Drive, In the Mood for Love, Harry Potter, Monster's Ball, and Joy Ride. (Did Iron Monkey also hit the states this year?)

P.S. I too felt like I was being tortured watching Magnolia. But then again, I don't pretend to have had decent taste back then.
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Post27 Sep 2005 08:52 pm
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Cinephile wrote:
i'll probably eventually see the constant gardner, broken flower, jarhead, Aeon Flux, The Chronicles of Narnia, king kong, the producers, zathura, harry potter


constant gardner is probaly good. broken flower is supposed to be good. flux could be good scifi. chronicles will tell a nice yarn probably...i read the books in grade school. KING KONG better not be good...it better be very good, zathura might be interesting. harry potter never disappoints.

thus....the good films always always get jammed at the end of the year because of oscars.


I'm excited about Chronicles of Narnia and King Kong.

Also....HP, though I wouldn't say it "never disappoints". I hated Prisoner of Azkaban.
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Nate
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Post27 Sep 2005 08:58 pm
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Cinephile wrote:
flux could be good scifi.


After seeing the trailer, I think it looks powerfully uninspired. There's no style to it, there's no flair, and I worry that they'll dumb down what was arguably the smartest cartoon ever assembled for American TV.
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Reel Monkey
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Post27 Sep 2005 09:00 pm
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well, I'm at least glad people are thinking about this. So let me get your gears really going.

Last year we did the Smoppies. I suggest you check out the Smoppies article and starting thinking about your nominations and make sure that you are caught up on your movies by mid-January. Last year people were upset because they didn't get to see movies and all that, so now you have a warning. So keep your lists going and make sure you see them in time for nominations.

Good luck!

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Nate
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Post27 Sep 2005 09:03 pm
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Reel Monkey wrote:
So keep your lists going and make sure you see them in time for nominations.


Of course the films with late releases will still be unavoidable. Does that mean late 2004 inclusions like Hotel Rwanda and Million Dollar Baby and others can be included in the next Smoppies nomination list?
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Post27 Sep 2005 09:05 pm
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Nate wrote:
Reel Monkey wrote:
So keep your lists going and make sure you see them in time for nominations.


Of course the films with late releases will still be unavoidable. Does that mean late 2004 inclusions like Hotel Rwanda and Million Dollar Baby and others can be included in the next Smoppies nomination list?


No. We still follow Oscar guidelines...with the exception of foreign films (I think) whose rules are stupidly convoluted. Foreign Films basically = same rulings as other non foreign films (have to show in NY or LA before the New Year).

Afterall, during last year's smoppies we had several folks who had seen Hotel Rwanda and MDB. And yes, Hotel Rwanda was AMAZING and I didn't get to see it until after the smoppies, but owell. That's the fate of films that push the deadlines too close to the wire. That happened to Nowhere in Africa for me too. It was one of the best films of its year....won best Foreign Film, but I didn't see it until way after the fact when it finally made its way to our theaters.
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Post28 Sep 2005 02:46 am
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I could not be less excited about Chronicles of Narnia. Something about the religious aspect of the marketing I find disturbing. I'm not a church goer but there should be some place you can go that is immune to marketing.
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Post28 Sep 2005 06:22 am
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Kernan wrote:
I could not be less excited about Chronicles of Narnia. Something about the religious aspect of the marketing I find disturbing. I'm not a church goer but there should be some place you can go that is immune to marketing.


Uh...

a) It's a deeply religious series, even if The Lion, The witch, and The Wardrobe is mostly fluff in comparison to the later books

b) I don't see the marketing as being particularly religious.

c) The "religious" section of society has as much right to have films made that appeal to their sensibilities as the sci-fi nerd (Serenity), hip hop fan (Get Rich or Die Trying), or comic book zealots (Sin City, Batman, wtfever).
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Post28 Sep 2005 08:13 am
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RE: Chronicles of Narnia... I don't think a person is required to be religious in nature to appreciate good religious imagery or biblical allusion. The bible is as much a cultural and literary institution as it is a spiritual one. So one ought to be able to enjoy Chronicles of Narnia and all its religious aspects in the same way as one enjoy's George Lucas' throwbacks to Jung, Joseph Campbell, or the Wizard of Oz; Clerks' structural similarities to the Divine Comedy; moments of Hamlet and Othello in the Spider-Man movies, and so on.
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Post28 Sep 2005 08:56 am
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Thom wrote:
RE: Chronicles of Narnia... I don't think a person is required to be religious in nature to appreciate good religious imagery or biblical allusion. The bible is as much a cultural and literary institution as it is a spiritual one. So one ought to be able to enjoy Chronicles of Narnia and all its religious aspects in the same way as one enjoy's George Lucas' throwbacks to Jung, Joseph Campbell, or the Wizard of Oz; Clerks' structural similarities to the Divine Comedy; moments of Hamlet and Othello in the Spider-Man movies, and so on.


QFT.
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Post28 Sep 2005 09:54 am
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I think my point about Chronicles has been missed. There was a story in the New York Times about how the producers of Chronicles of Narnia had been getting in touch with church leaders across the country about helping them market the movie to church goers. Now me personally I find it unseemly for corporations to spread their marketing in churches regardless of whether the product is religious in nature or not. That bulletin board in the church foyer is for bake sales, garage sales and baby pictures not movie posters.
Chronicles is likely to be a blockbuster no matter how they market it so is it to much to ask that the nations churches be the one place free of corporate advertising.
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