My Week in Movies, 2016 Week 52

This is the last weekly post of the year, but soon (hopefully) I’ll be posting my grander retrospective on the year as a whole, so I’ll not go into too much detail today about the targets and how well I may not have done with them. Instead, I watched a whole bunch of movies over the holiday period, so let’s talk about them instead!
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A Matter of Life and Death

Whilst returning home to England after a mission over Germany during World War II, RAF pilot Peter Carter (David Niven) reports back to American radio operator June (Kim Hunter) and alerts her to the presence of his squad, who all bailed out of their severely damaged aircraft. With his own radio technician, Bob (Robert Coote), dead and no intact parac/hutes remaining, Carter knows he will not survive the return journey, but plans to eject anyway, preferring to jump rather than fry, but during his brie dialogue with June the pair develop an attraction. Suffice to say, Carter bails out and his plane crashes but, miraculously, he awakes on shore, fully alive. You see there has been an error in Heaven and, due to the heavy fog across the English Channel, Carter’s body could not be found. An agent of Heaven, Conductor 71 (Marius Goring), is sent to retrieve him, but alas he has met in person with June and the two have fallen hopelessly in love, and therefore Carter is far from willing to accept his allotted demise, and instead intends to fight his case to the end.
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My Week in Movies, 2016 Week 50

Christmas is just a week away, but this year, and for the first time in as long as I can remember, I’m feeling relatively calm about it – I think I’m almost looking forward to it! I’ve got every present bought and am just waiting for one to be delivered, I’ve earmarked tomorrow to get started on the wrapping, everything is in place food-wise, and Christmas Eve is on a Saturday, so I definitely won’t have to work, and any last minute errands that need running won’t be a problem. The only downside is that so far this year the closest I’ve come to watching a Christmas movie is Batman Returns! Ah well, I guess that’s something I’ll be catching up on this week to come!
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Batman Returns

33 years after being dumped into the sewers as a baby by his horrified parents, Oswald Cobblepot (Danny DeVito), a disfigured, disgusting man, wants to surface and claim his rights as a human. Meanwhile, shy secretary Selina Kyle (Michelle Pfeiffer) works for business tycoon Max Shreck (Christopher Walken), who constantly belittles her. When she discovers his plans for a power station will actually drain and store Gotham’s surplus energy, he tries to kill her but fails, causing her to seek revenge. Also, there’s a bloke going around dressed as a bat, but clearly, he’s not as important.
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In 1919, the Russian village of Archangel continued to fight a war they didn’t know was over. Grief-stricken Canadian soldier Lt. Boles (Kyle McCulloch) arrives at the village and assists a family with an injured child, only to see a vision of his dead wife. This vision turns out to be field nurse Veronkha (Kathy Marykuca), who happens to look exactly like Boles’ wife. Veronkha has her own problems though, her husband, Lt. Philbin (Ari Cohen) has suffered a brain injury that makes him think he is always experiencing his wedding night, despite the fact that Veronkha is no longer in love with him.
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My Fortnight in Film, 2016 Weeks 48 & 49

Parks and Recreation is rapidly becoming one of my favourite sitcoms. I’m a few episodes into series six (of seven) and all the actors have really settled into their respective grooves and know exactly what they’re doing, and for the most part the writers know how to handle them too. Of the main cast it’s too difficult to pick a best character or actor, as they are all great in their own ways, although for me one of the funniest moments so far is Ron Swanson (Nick Offerman) attempting to do the unthinkable and eat a banana. I will be sad when I get to the end of this show.
swanson-bananaI’ve also watched all of Westworld recently (no spoilers, don’t worry) and whilst I enjoyed the premise and a lot of the set-up, I’ve been disappointed and feel let-down by how the series ended, as little happened that I didn’t see coming a long way off, and the parts I did find surprising felt like a disservice to the characters effected. I wasn’t expecting everything to be wrapped up neatly, and things have been put into an interesting point from which season 2 will have to start, but this has yet to join the pantheon of all-time greats like Breaking Bad or Game of Thrones. There’s potential – as long as they keep giving Jeffrey Wright and Thandie Newton killer scenes to chomp on – but it’s not there yet. Anyway, enough about TV, what have I been watching recently movie-wise?
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November 2016 Update

I have been trying to write this post for over a week! And it’s such a simple one to do, just ramble a little about what I got up to in the past month, put some links to the posts I’ve written, bemoan my lack of productivity and how much I’ve still got to do, and move on! And given how unproductive I was in November, this should have taken no time at all. I think I’ve been putting it off because this is the month where I finally admit defeat. Even if I’d got this post out as planned on the 1st of December, I still wouldn’t have had a chance, as I’m over 40 films away from my target, and that’s more days then there are in December. Now, one week later, I’ve written little new and watched even less, so consider my towel well and truly thrown in. “Wait!” I hear you cry, “what about the week after Christmas, when you’re job is closed down until after New Year? Surely you could watch and review lots of films then?” My response would be a firm and resolute “Maybe” were it not for the numerous family-based activities occurring during that week, which will severely hinder my film-watching and film-reviewing abilities. So don’t expect a repeat performance of last December, wherein the final week was spent valiantly catching up on the goals I’d fallen behind on. This year I’m taking the much easier, more sensible and less stressful option of just plain giving up. Not entirely, I might add. I’ve got no hope of achieving my 100 films from the 1001 List goal, but there are others. I only need to watch-and-review one Blind Spot pick and I hit that target, so A Matter of Life and Death is in my imminent future, which is more than OK with me. Similarly, I’m three “Bad” movies away from that goal, and I’ve already watched one and started the review, so that should be relatively straight forward. The Film-Makers challenge is trickier, given I’m 9 away from completing that. Granted I’ve already watched at least two eligible films, but it’d be difficult to see that one through. If I achieve it though, and somehow make all the Film-Makers movies to also be from the 1001 List, then along with the Blind Spot and “Bad” movies, and maybe even a few pending review, I could perhaps get my 1001 goal up to 70. That’s my target, let’s see how I do.
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