February 2015 in Cinema: Or Goddammit Takashi Miike Quit Hogging the Spotlight

The past month was characterized by three significant choices in my viewing habits. The first of which was my continual efforts to both shed light on films directed by women this year, and keep the number of movies I watch this year balanced on a gender spectrum. The other choices were motivated by adorable couple decisions you do when you’re in a cinephile relationship. My boyfriend and I attended the digital film festival being held at the local cineplex this year which showed older films in DCP (yeah, yeah, I know actual film prints are better, but that is a privilege not granted to us because of the area we live in), and we ended up rewatching a handful of great films like Blade Runner, Alien, Aliens, Darkman & Kill Bill. The second change of my viewing habits was present in the latter half of the month after we decided to forgo the difficulty of actually selecting a movie for pure change. We tore off 15 pieces of paper and scribbled titles on each parchment and drew movies out of a hat, and it has been excellent. It should be noted we had to ban Takashi Miike from the hat, because he hexed it, and we only drew his films at the beginning. Takashi Miike is a very bad man for cheating.

Best of February
Waitress (Adrienne Shelly, 2007)
No Fear, No Die (Claire Denis, 1990)
Dead or Alive 2 (Takashi Miike, 2000)
The Day I Became a Woman (Marziyeh Meshkini, 2000)
Big Bang Love (Takashi Miike, 2006)
Goodbye First Love (Mia Hansen-Love, 2012)
Life Without Principle (Johnnie To, 2011)
Summer Interlude (Ingmar Bergman, 1951)
Zebraman 2: Attack on Zebra City (Takashi Miike, 2010)
Friends With Love (Nicole Holofcener, 2006)
Le Pont Du Nord (Jacques Rivette, 1981)

Best Rewatches
Kill Bill (Quentin Tarantino, 2003/4)
Alien (Ridley Scott, 1979)
Aliens (James Cameron, 1986)
Blade Runner (Ridley Scott, 1982)
Darkman (Sam Raimi, 1990)
Gone Girl (David Fincher, 2013)
F For Fake (Orson Welles, 1973)
Paradise Lost: The Child Murders at Robin Hood Hills    (Joe Berlinger, Bruce Sinofsky, 1996)

Gender Tally for 2015
First Time Viewings Only
Women: 22
Men: 24

March/April 2014: Cinema

I held off on a monthly report for March because of a lack of viewings, but I’m back to doing the monthly thing now combining the past two months. I made a few cinematic memories over the past two months, and my favourites were from Ernst Lubitsch and Jean-Luc Godard. I also finished the filmography of Elaine May who has to be one of the most under appreciated directors of all time. She only made four films and each one of them is very good and Mikey and Nicky and A New Leaf are masterpieces. I finally got a start on new films as well in the past 61 days with Stranger By the Lake and Only Lovers Left Alive. The highlight of the past two months was writing for The Vulgar Cinema again. I loved Johnnie To’s, Don’t Go Breaking My Heart and it is one of the very best films I’ve seen this year. My interests outside of cinema have mostly been consumed by wrestling, but I did start up on classic era Simpsons and it’s as good as everyone says. 2014 is shaping up to be a fruitful year in cinema even if I’m working at a much slower rate than I have in past years for personal reasons. May is already off to a great start, and I might have big positive life changes this month as well. Things are looking mighty swell for Willow. I hope they are for you too.

Best
Don’t Go Breaking My Heart (Johnnie To, 2011)
The Doll (Ernst Lubitsch, 1919)
Notre Musique (Jean-Luc Godard, 2004)
Working Girls (Lizzie Borden, 1986)
The Fruit of the Paradise (Vera Chytilova, 1970)
Mikey and Nicky (Elaine May, 1976)
Stranger by the Lake (Alain Guiraudie, 2014)
First Name: Carmen (Jean-Luc Godard, 1983)
 Christine (John Carpenter, 1983)
The Palm Beach Story (Preston Sturges, 1942)
Journey to Italy (Roberto Rossellini, 1954)
Tokyo Drifter (Sejin Suzuki, 1966)
La Chambre (Chantal Akerman, 1972)
The Great Dictator (Charlie Chaplin, 1940)
Meet Me in St. Louis (Vincente Minnelli, 1944)

Best Rewatches
Whip It (Drew Barrymoore, 2009)
My Neighbor Totoro (Hayao Miyazaki, 1988)
Moonrise Kingdom (Wes Anderson, 2012)
8 1/2 (Federico Fellini, 1963)
Dogville (Lars von Trier, 2004)

Worst
Labor Day (Jason Reitman, 2014)
Proxy (Zack Parker, 2013)
Devil’s Knot (Atom Egoyan, 2013)
Goats (Christopher Neil, 2012)