Saturday, December 12, 2009

My 2009 Movie Odyssey - Part XVI

Okay, so I'm way behind on my movie odyssey posting. So in the interest of catching up so this doesn't drag too far into 2010, I'm switching to 10 per post instead of my normal 5. Enjoy.

Up (2009)
This is a wonderful tale about friendship and adventure found in unexpected places, full of emotional highs and lows, and even when something happened exactly as I predicted, it still provoked an emotional response.

Das Experiment (2001)
This is a grim tale about a psychology experiment in which volunteers play the roles of prison guards and inmates that gets out of hand and was inspired by an actual experiment.

Sleuth (2007)
This remake took almost everything that was visually interesting from the original and threw it out the window along with most of the compelling elements of the plot and replaced them with a visually boring set, copious amounts of profanity, and a homoerotic ending that came completely out of nowhere and made absolutely no sense.

The Brothers Bloom (2008)
This con man romp from the director of Brick (2005) is a lot of fun with several interesting characters including Bang Bang, a cute explosives expert who never bothers to talk.

Ace in the Hole (1951)
This heartbreaking indictment of sensationalist journalism features an excellent performance by Kirk Douglas who stars as newspaper reporter who manufactures a human interest story that captures the imagination of the nation, and then does whatever he can to make the publicity wave last as long as possible, no matter what happens to anyone else.

Wings (1927)
I really wanted to like this film that was the first winner of the Best Picture Oscar, but the aerial dogfights were not very thrilling and an overlong sequence where one hotshot pilot gets drunk for the first time grew tedious very quickly.

Mr. Hulot’s Holiday (1953)
This charming, quiet comedy is almost a silent film and is full of memorable characters and amusing recurring jokes that force the audience to pay attention since so many of them are very subtle.

The Passion of Joan of Arc (1928)
Stunning photography and a powerful performance by Maria Falconetti make this a must-see for cinephiles but should probably be avoided by people who haven’t seen many silent films.

The Simpsons Movie (2007)
It is funny and feels like a long episode, but doesn’t break any new ground.

I.Q. (1994)
This is a cute movie about intelligent people being foolishly in love and a wonderful posse of elderly scientists led by Albert Einstein which reminded me (favorably) of Ball of Fire (1941).

Coming up next: my final best picture winner.

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