We’re halfway through 2014, and as lots of other sites seem to be doing mid-year updates I thought I’d bow to the peer pressure and do one as well.
At the start of the year I made a few resolutions. Here’s how I’m getting on:
1. Go to the cinema more:
My aim this year was to visit a cinema on average once every two weeks, so by now I should have gone thirteen times. I didn’t think I’d achieved this, but after a quick count-up I’m on exactly thirteen, so hurrah for me. And that’s without having been at all for over a month (I went four times in two days during February, so that helped with the average). Looking at the rest of the year’s line-up, however, I’m not positive there’s another thirteen that I’m overly excited about, but we’ll see. I know there’s probably at least ten, so maybe I can squeeze in a few more. I imagine How To Train Your Dragon 2 will be next.
2. Make progress in my Film-Makers lists:
As you may know, part of my site is dedicated to watching the entire careers of a select group of film-makers – Steve McQueen, Alfred Hitchcock, the Coen brothers, George Clooney and Kate Winslet. The intention is that once I’ve finished someone, I’ll add a new person to the list. My main aim this year was to finish off Winslet entirely – only 6 films of hers left at the start of this year, and make further progress in Hitchcock and McQueen. So far I’ve watched one Hitchcock film (Elstree Calling). That’s it. However, I’m saving Hitchcock to be focussed on in October (Hitchc-October, if you will). I’ve also purchased four McQueen DVDs (The Blob, Bullitt, The Getaway and The Cincinnati Kid), which is a step closer in my book.
The main issue is Winslet. Her two new films – Labor Day and Divergent – are at the top of my LoveFilm queue, but do not get released until August. As for the rest, I have Little Children and Eternal Sunshine for the Spotless Mind on DVD, looming at me from a shelf above my desk, and I discovered a secondhand copy of the previously unattainable Faeries on eBay. Plunge, an English 2003 surfing movie, has never been released in any format, and for all intents and purposes simply does not exist, so I’m scrubbing that off her list. This means five film, all with relatively easy access, and six months to watch them in. I think that sounds do-able, so I’m making a vow to watch and review at least one a month from now on, probably skipping October. If, by some miracle, you know how to get hold of a copy of Plunge, by all means let me know.
3. Podcast more:
There’s a chance I was cheating a little when I made this proclamation, for you see I was fully aware at the time that I would be imminently taking over the reigns of the Lambcast, the primary official podcast of the Large Association of Movie Blogs, and as such I’ve been hosting a podcast almost every week since January. I’ve also appeared twice on the FilmWhys podcast with Bubbawheat from Flights Tights and Movie Nights, and a few weeks ago I recorded an episode of the French Toast Sunday podcast, which was a great deal of fun and will be released in 2 weeks. I’ll post that when it comes up, because that’s a show you’re going to want to listen to.
4. Most Anticipated/Least Anticipated Lists
This is the doozy. Late last year I compiled two lists from the 1001 Movies You Must See Before You Die list. One was for the films I’m least looking forward to, and the other was the opposite. At the start of this year I then decided to watch every film from those lists, one from each every month. As such, you’d expect me to have crossed off six films from each list. Alas, this is not the case. I’ve attacked the Most Anticipated list with the expected level of gusto – these six have been crossed off:
To Kill A Mockingbird
The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo
His Girl Friday
All About Eve
Harold and Maude
however, the Least Anticipated list has not fared so well, mainly because I don’t particularly want to see these films, hence why they’re on that list. Also, a lot of them are pretty damn long, and finding the time is difficult. As such, I’ve only crossed off four:
Salo or 120 Days of Sodom
The Crying Game
Hotel Terminus: The Life and Times of Klaus Barbie
although my review of Irreversible is pending, and will be posted in a few days, if not tomorrow. I’m not saying I won’t complete this list this year, but I am saying it’s going to be difficult.
OK, last bit. I mentioned earlier that I’d been to the cinema 13 times so far this year. Well, some of those visits were to see films released last year (such as Frozen and The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug), but I’ve also seen a few films from early this year that have hit DVD already. Here’s the fifteen movies from 2014 that I’ve seen so far, in order of how much I liked them. Some of them may have been released in 2013 in other areas, but they were all released in 2014 in the UK:
14. The Monuments Men – review pending
13. Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit
11. The Wolf of Wall Street
10. The Past – review pending
9. Cuban Fury
8. Dallas Buyers Club
7. Inside Llewyn Davis – review pending
5. Muppets Most Wanted
4. X-Men: Days Of Future Past
3. The Grand Budapest Hotel
2. 12 Years A Slave
1. The Lego Movie
I will update this list at the end of the year, with a mini review of each film. Hopefully, by the end of 2014, I will have seen at least fifty films released this year. I also aim to watch The Lego Movie another dozen or so times.
I hope you’re all enjoying your year so far, I look forward to the rest of it!