Thursday, October 10, 2019

A List Update

It seems a little late this year, but the new version of the 1001 Movies list is out. As tends to be the case these days, I've seen most of the entries already. The 2019 version includes 12 new listings. I've seen eight of them and have posted reviews of seven, so I guess I'll be watching Avengers: Infinity War again.

Anyway, here's Wonderwall:
The Greatest Showman (2017)
Phantom Thread (2017)
Avengers: Infinity War (2018)
BlacKkKlansman (2018)
Capernaum (2018)
Crazy Rich Asians (2018)
Hereditary (2018)
The Favourite (2018)
Roma (2018)
Sorry to Bother You (2018)
A Star is Born (2018)
Vice (2018)

A few thoughts--

It's nice to see another superhero movie make the list that isn't a Batman film, but I'd have genuinely perferred to see Spider-Man: Into the Spiderverse on the list rather than Infinity War. This is not because I've posted a review of the former and I have to rewatch the later now. It's because it's genuinely a better movie, and arguably the best MCU-related film so far. But, The List has always been biased against animation, and that's not going to change this year, evidently.

I haven't seen the latest version of A Star is Born (it's sitting on the table next to me), but I'm a little disappointed that it's here. Maybe it's great, but do we need another version of this story? It'll be the third version I watch for this blog, and while I was going to watch it anyway, it seems that there's plenty of space for movies that tell a new story here instead of something we've all seen before. Honestly, I could say the same thing about Crazy Rich Asians. It's a fine movie, but aside from the all-Asian cast in an American-financed movie, this is nothing that hasn't been seen a hundred times. It feels a lot like the sort of "rich people romance" movies that were so prevalent during the Great Depression. It's a fine movie, but is it really required viewing in any real sense?

Off the top of my head, Can You Ever Forgive Me?, A Quiet Place, Annihilation, and Won't You Be My Neighbor? all seem like better choices. But hey, who am I to tell the Listmakers what to do (other than once a year at Christmas)?

It's also interesting to see that, as far as I know, the previous Best Picture winner did not make the list. Green Book is not here, and that feels off. Then again, I wouldn't choose to have it here, either, so maybe this is a good thing.

So, assuming I can find Capernaum by the end of the year, I should be able to knock these out before New Year's.


  1. The Greatest Showman? Seriously? I saw some of that film and I found it to be annoying and overwrought. Plus, I hated the songs as it played up to everything I hate about today's pop music.

    Of the films in that list that I haven't seen are: Vice, A Star is Born, Hereditary, Crazy Rich Asians (in its entirety), Capernaum, and Sorry to Bother You.

    1. Having not seen anything of it, I can't comment, but I was surprised to see it when there are so many other movies from last year that were almost certainly better.

      Crazy Rich Asians is a very standard rich people in love rom-com that just happens to be populated entirely by Asians. You could keep 95% of that screenplay the same and cast it with entirely white, black, or Hispanic actors and have the same movie.

      Sorry to Bother You is worth seeing. It spins out of control in the third act, but it's pretty great getting there.

  2. I haven't seen Phantom Thread, Crazy Rich Asians or Capernaum. Phantom Thread and Crazy Rich Asians will be easy to get from the library, and I will probably see them both within a week or two. I put a hold on Capernaum. The Los Angeles County Public Library system has several copies floating around and I'm 14th in line! I'm not sure when I'll get it. Hopefully by the end of the year.

    I loved Roma, The Favourite and Vice and I'm glad they are on the List. I put them all on the 10-film prediction list I made for the new additions, along with The Death of Stalin, Shoplifters, Isle of Dogs, Spider-Man into the Spiderverse and Won't You Be My Neighbor?

    I'm OK with A Star Is Born, Sorry to Bother You and BlacKkKlansman, especially Sorry to Bother You. They are all very good, perfectly watchable films that just didn't quite appeal to me as much as some of the others. I was actually pretty excited about A Star Is Born while I was watching it.

    So that leaves Avengers: Infinity War, The Greatest Showman and Hereditary as the films that are making me scratch my head. Infinity War is OK summer super-hero fare, but it's a narrative mess, it's too long and I also doubt that I'm only one who's a little tired of Tony Stark.

    The Greatest Showman seems to have a lot of fans among people who like musicals. I wasn't bored. It was OK. But I wasn't moved at all, I was rather disappointed in the major changes they made to Barnum's fascinating life and - worst of all - I wasn't humming any of the songs when it was over.

    I watched Hereditary last weekend after I heard it was one of the new additions. Hereditary has a great performance from Toni Collete, but otherwise I found it long, pretentious and torturously contrived. One of my horror-movie fan friends was talking about how great it was when I mentioned I had seen it and he was surprised I hadn't liked it. Hereditary apparently has a decent number of followers, so I guess it's just me that found it to be a bit of a chore.

    1. I have a great deal of respect for Hereditary, although it's not a movie I think I want to see again.

      There are, I think, some better choices than what we got.

    2. I have seen ten of these movies; The Greatest Showman only because I knew it would be in the list. My kids have been pressing me to watch Hereditary but I have balked because of *that*

      I hated Showman as I see no need to celebrate coincidence men in this day and age, and the spin of PC correctness and inclusiveness drive me up the wall. It was a nauseating combination for me. Just Ugh. I would have preferred Annihilation instead. As I was exciting the theater after that movie, I overheard a burly man saying in a hushed tones to his companion "That was much scarier than I thought it would be!" And no love for Can You Ever Forgive Me?

      weak in foreign films this time around. I am surprised Cold War or Shoplifters did not make the list.

      Off to see Capernaum and Herditary.

      I am at 903 on the complete list-but they keep moving the goalposts!

  3. I think you'll find Capernaum to be a good choice. I don't say "like" because it's hard for me to use that word about a film dealing with third world poverty conditions. I'm giving the 1001 list credit here for pushing me to watch something I'm pretty sure I would have skipped otherwise.

    1. I did like Capernaum quite a bit. I'm down to one left and a couple more days in the year, so I think I'll finish before the year turns.