365 Films, 365 Days- June/July/August

Inspired by the Doug Benson Movie Challenge, I attempt to watch 365 movies over the calendar year of 2017. Any genre of film is eligible, including documentaries and Netflix originals, as long as it’s something I haven’t seen before (you’ll have to trust me on that). The hope is I can cross off some films I’ve been dying to see for ages but have never gotten round to, as well as discover some gems I might never have come across otherwise.

It’s been a dismal summer, here’s what went wrong…

June/July/August

It’s been a disastrous three months. Working 6 days a week, 13 hours a day, I always knew these would be barren months, but I didn’t even get close to my modest viewing goal of a film every three days, meaning everyday counts from here on out. The quantity wasn’t up to much, but there was certainly a fair amount of quality, so with that in mind lets press on…

These Months’ List

  1. Gregory’s Girl (dir. Bill Forsyth, 1980)
  2. The Seventh Seal (dir. Ingmar Bergman, 1957)
  3. Tarzan (dir. Chris Buck & Kevin Lima, 1999)
  4. Brassed Off (dir. Mark Herman, 1996)
  5. Eddie- Strongman (dir. Matt Bell, 2015)
  6. The Spirit of the Beehive (dir. Victor Erice, 1973)
  7. Raw (dir. Julia Docournau, 2016)
  8. Catfight (dir. Onur Tukel, 2016)
  9. The Great Dictator (dir. Charles Chaplin, 1940)
  10. Don’t Think Twice (dir. Mike Birbiglia, 2016)
  11. The LEGO Batman Movie (dir. Chris McKay, 2017)
  12. Beauty and the Beast (dir. Bill Condon, 2017)
  13. Batman: The Movie (dir. Leslie H. Martinson, 1966)
  14. The Break Up (dir. Peyton Reed, 2006)
  15. The Return of the Pink Panther (dir. Blake Edwards, 1975)
  16. Sing (dir. Christophe Lourdelet & Garth Jennings, 2016)
  17. Casa de mi Padre (dir. Matt Piedmont, 2012)
  18. The Lobster (dir. Yorgos Lanthimos, 2015)
  19. Fifty Shades Darker (dir. James Foley, 2017)
  20. Sleepwalk with Me (dir. Mike Birbiglia & Seth Barrish, 2012)
  21. Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping (dir. Akiva Schaffer & Jorma Taccone, 2016)
  22. The Little Death (dir. Josh Lawson, 2014)
  23. Okja (dir. Bong Joon Ho, 2017)
  24. Dunkirk (dir. Christopher Nolan, 2017)
  25. Prevenge (dir. Alice Lowe, 2016)
  26. Daddy’s Home (dir. Sean Anders, 2015)
  27. The Big Sick (dir. Michael Showalter, 2017)
  28. Man Bites Dog (dir. Remy Belvaux, Benoit Poelvoorde & Andre Bonzel, 1992)
  29. Personal Shopper (dir. Olivier Assayas, 2016)
  30. Modern Times (dir. Charles Chaplin, 1936)
  31. The Princess Diaries (dir. Garry Marshall, 2001)
  32. Hausu (dir. Nobuhiko Obayashi, 1977)
  33. Baby Driver (dir. Edgar Wright, 2017)
  34. Onibaba (dir. Kaneto Shindo, 1964)

 

Highlights & Standouts

This was probably the hardest month(s) to narrow it down a top 5. The fact that Modern Times, Okja, The Big Sick, Baby Driver, Personal Shopper, The Little Death and Hausu all missed out is testament to the films viewed this month.

I really want to single out The Little Death in particular, as it is a film that really deserves a bigger audience. Using multi-strand narrative, the film looks at how various fetishes effect different couples. It’s got a wicked line of jet-black humour running all the way through it, think a perverse, Australian, Love, Actually, and you’re somewhere in the ball park.

Low Points & Disappointments

The Break Up was a turgid affair from start to finish. A witless, charmless anti-romcom with unlikeable and unsympathetic leads. A criminal runtime at 1hr 46mins managed to make it feel like twice as a long again. I sincerely hope this is the nadir of the year.

It feels almost perverse to mention Dunkirk in the same breath as The Break Up, but it was a victim of impossibly high expectations, and for me it did not live up to the hype. That is not to say that it is not a magnificent technical achievement, and I thoroughly admired how Nolan seamlessly weaved the different timelines together, but I struggled to connect with any of the characters and was so wowed by the visuals that any semblance of tension passed me by.

Fifty Shades Darker was dreadful, and not even in a car crash, fun kind of way. But is that really a surprise to anyone?

Performance of the Month

I mean the correct is answer is of course Charlie Chaplin in The Great Dictator, probably closely followed by Charlie Chaplin in Modern Times. The man was a master, every scene he is in is planned out to perfection. He is never anything but a joy to behold onscreen. The Great Dictator is the first time I’ve actually heard his voice, and his words from his closing speech still ring in my ears.

chaplin

Benoit Poelvoorde deserves an honourable mention for his portrayal of serial killer Ben in Man Bites Dog. It is a charismatic and dangerous performance, a fascinating subject for the faux documentary crew to have stumbled upon. He rattles off his dialogue like machine-gun fire, turning from threatening, to funny, to offensive to insightful, all in the space of a single paragraph. He is the reason the film works so well.

 

Top 5 of the Month (in no particular order)

Raw– a vegetarian student begins veterinary school and develops a taste for meat. What could have been a shlocky-gorefest is in fact an fantastically artistic, immaculately performed, wince-inducing film that straddles multiple genres and is never predictable.

The Great Dictator- Chaplin’s a genius, and the film makes points still frighteningly relevant today. What more can be said?

The Seventh Seal- A slice of Quixotic existentialism from Ingmar Bergman. It’s beautiful, at times daft, but always fascinating.

Man Bites Dog- Provides the blue print for how to make a marvellous mockumentary/found footage film while at the same time makes it completely unnecessary to ever try to do so again.

Onibaba- Masterful tone and setting, you don’t even realise you’re watching a horror film until about 3/4 of the way through. The pacing is absolutely spot on, builds to a satisfying/horrifying climax.

Onibaba

The Year So Far

Breakdown by Decade

2010’s- 93

2000’s- 10

1990’s- 14

1980’s- 7

1970’s- 22

1960’s- 14

1950’s- 5

1940’s- 4

1930’s- 5

1920’s- 3

Days to film ratio

177 films watched in 243 days, meaning I still have 188 films to watch in 122 days. From here on out I will need to watch 1.54 films a day to finish on time. A total nightmare scenario to find myself in.

Total minutes of film watching

17,861 minutes of film watching, that’s over 297 hours, 12.4 days. Seems like a lot, and yet I’m so far behind.

Films by the Nations

USA- 100

UK- 42

France- 21

Germany- 11

Japan- 9

Belgium- 6

Spain- 5

Italy- 4

Netherlands- 4

Sweden- 4

Denmark- 3

Canada- 3

New Zealand- 3

Ireland- 3

Australia- 3

China- 2

Hong Kong- 2

Mexico- 2

Luxemburg- 2

Taiwan- 2

Norway- 2

South Korea- 2

Greece- 2

Brazil- 1

Austria- 1

Switzerland- 1

Romania- 1

Argentina- 1

Chile- 1

Soviet Union- 1

Cambodia- 1

Hungary- 1

Tunisia- 1

Jordan- 1

UAE- 1

Qatar- 1

Senegal- 1

Finland- 1

Indonesia- 1

Israel- 1

Czech Republic- 1

Some films are co-produced by multiple nations, which explains why the numbers may not add up.

Recurring Directors

Luis Bunuel- 3 (Los Olvidados, L’Age d’Or, Belle de Jour)

Danny Boyle- 2 (Steve Jobs, T2: Trainspotting)

Powell & Pressburger- 2 (A Matter of Life and Death, The Red Shoes)

Mike Mills- 2 (Beginners, 20th Century Women)

Ridley Scott- 2 (Thelma & Louise, Alien: Covenant)

Ingmar Bergman- 2 (Persona, The Seventh Seal)

Charles Chaplain- 2 (The Great Dictator, Modern Times)

Mike Birbiglia- 2 (Don’t Think Twice, Sleepwalk with Me)

 

The complete list so far…

  1. The Good Dinosaur (dir. Peter Sohn, 2015)
  2. Your Name (dir. Makoto Shinkai, 2016)
  3. Star Trek Beyond (dir. Justin Lin, 2016)
  4. Notes on Blindness (dir. Pete Middleton, 2016)
  5. Le Samourai (dir. Jean-Pierre Melville, 1967)
  6. I am Not a Serial Killer (dir. Billy O’Brien, 2016)
  7. Bridget Jones’s Diary (dir. Sharon Maguire, 2001)
  8. Keanu (dir. Peter Atencio, 2016)
  9. La La Land (dir. Damien Chazelle, 2016)
  10. Train to Busan* (dir. Sang-ho Yeon, 2016)
  11. Don’t Breathe* (dir. Fede Alvarez, 2016)
  12. Nosferatu* (dir. F.W. Murnau, 1922)
  13. Carrie* (dir. Brian De Palma, 1976)
  14. Re-Animator* (dir. Stuart Gordon, 1985)
  15. Jack Frost* (dir. Michael Coon, 1997)
  16. Blair Witch* (dir. Adam Wingard, 2016)
  17. What We Did on Our Holiday (dir. Andy Hamilton & Guy Jenkin, 2014)
  18. The Devils (dir. Ken Russell, 1971)
  19. Eddie the Eagle (dir. Dexter Fletcher, 2016)
  20. Chef (dir. Jon Favreau, 2014)
  21. The One I Love (dir. Charlie McDowell, 2014)
  22. Steve Jobs (dir. Danny Boyle, 2015)
  23. Manchester By The Sea (dir. Kenneth Lonergan, 2016)
  24. The Killing (dir. Stanley Kubrick, 1956)
  25. In the Heat of the Night** (dir. Norman Jewison, 1967)
  26. Shakespeare in Love** (dir. John Madden, 1998)
  27. The Sting** (dir. George Roy Hill, 1973)
  28. Mutiny on the Bounty** (dir. Frank Lloyd, 1935)
  29. Patton** (dir. Franklin J. Schaffner, 1970)
  30. Rogue One: A Star Wars Story (dir. Gareth Edwards, 2016)
  31. Little Men (dir. Ira Sachs, 2016)
  32. Julieta (dir. Pedro Almodovar, 2016)
  33. Fish Tank (dir. Andrea Arnold, 2009)
  34. Spa Night (dir. Andrew Ahn, 2016)
  35. 1984 (dir. Michael Radford, 1984)***
  36. 10 Rillington Place (dir. Richard Fleischer, 1971)***
  37. 44 Inch Chest (dir. Malcolm Venville, 2009)***
  38. Watership Down (dir. Martin Rosen, 1978)***
  39. Thelma and Louise (dir. Ridley Scott, 1991)
  40. David Brent: Life on the Road (dir. Ricky Gervais, 2016)
  41. The Fits (dir. Anna Rose Holmer, 2015)
  42. The Magnificent Seven (dir. Antoine Fuqua, 2016)
  43. Hello, My Name is Doris (dir. Michael Showalter, 2016)
  44. Toni Erdmann (dir. Maren Ade, 2016)
  45. Manhattan (dir. Woody Allen, 1979)
  46. The Clan (dir. Pablo Trapero, 2015)
  47. Black Sheep (dir. Jonathan King, 2016)
  48. T2: Trainspotting (dir. Danny Boyle, 2017)
  49. Florence Foster Jenkins (dir. Stephen Frears, 2016)
  50. Zatoichi Meets Yojimbo (dir. Kihachi Okamoto, 1970)
  51. The Girl with All the Gifts (dir. Colm McCarthy, 2016)
  52. Hidden Figures (dir. Theodore Melfi, 2016)
  53. Tucker and Dale vs. Evil (dir. Eli Craig, 2010)
  54. The Secret of the Kells (dir. Tomm Moore & Nora Twomey, 2009)
  55. Ixcanul (dir. Jayro Bustamante, 2015)****
  56. Aquarius (dir. Kleber Mendonca, 2016)****
  57. The Club**** (dir. Pablo Larrain, 2015)
  58. Los Olvidados**** (dir. Luis Bunuel, 1950)
  59. El Topo **** (dir. Alejandro Jodorowsky, 1970)
  60. Get Out (dir. Jordan Peele, 2017)
  61. Wrinkles (dir. Ignacio Ferreras, 2011)
  62. Logan (dir. James Mangold, 2017)
  63. The Taking of Pelham 123 (dir. Joseph Sargent, 1974)
  64. Laura (dir. Otto Preminger, 1944)
  65. L’Age d’Or (dir. Luis Bunuel, 1930)
  66. Battleship Potemkin (dir. Sergei M. Eisenstein, 1925)
  67. Sausage Party (dir. Greg Tiernan & Conrad Vernon, 2016)
  68. Love and Death on Long Island (dir. Richard Kwietniowski, 1997)
  69. Moana ^(dir. Ron Clements, Chris Williams, Don Hall, John Musker, 2016)
  70. Sleepless in Seattle^ (dir. Nora Ephron, 1993)
  71. Paris is Burning^ (dir. Jennie Livingstone, 1990)
  72. Sixteen Candles^ (dir. John Hughes, 1984)
  73. National Treasure: Book of Secrets^ (dir. Jon Turteltaub, 2007)
  74. Like Crazy^ (dir. Drake Doremus, 2011)
  75. Kong: Skull Island (dir. Jordan Vogt-Roberts, 2017)
  76. I am Not Your Negro (dir. Raoul Peck, 2016)
  77. Beginners (dir. Mike Mills, 2010)
  78. Godzilla (dir. Ishiro Honda, 1954)
  79. Tabloid (dir. Errol Morris, 2010)
  80. A Matter of Life and Death (dir. Michael Powell & Emeric Pressburger, 1946)
  81. Pink Narcissus (dir. James Bidgood, 1971)
  82. The Devil Rides Out (dir. Terence Fisher, 1968)
  83. Somm (dir. Jason Wise, 2012)
  84. I Live in Fear (dir. Akira Kurosawa, 1955)
  85. White God (dir. Kornel, Mundruczo, 2014)
  86. Super Fly (dir. Gordon Parks Jnr., 1972)
  87. Foxy Brown (dir. Jack Hill, 1974)
  88. Black Belt Jones (dir. Robert Clouse, 1974)
  89. Blacula (dir. William Crain, 1972)
  90. Three the Hard Way (dir. Gordon Parks Jnr., 1974)
  91. The Mack (dir. Michael Campus, 1973)
  92. Whale Rider (dir. Niki Caro, 2002)
  93. Dragon (dir. Peter Ho-Sun Chan, 2011)
  94. The Love Witch (dir. Anna Biller, 2016)
  95. Distant Voices, Still Lives (dir. Terence Davis, 1988)
  96. Headhunters (dir. Morten Tyldum, 2011)
  97. Dead Ringers (dir. David Cronenberg, 1988)
  98. Love is Colder Than Death (dir. Rainer Werner Fassbinder, 1969)
  99. The Red Shoes (dir. Michael Powell & Emeric Pressburger, 1948)
  100. La Promesse (dir. Jean-Pierre & Luc Dardenne, 1996)
  101. Lion (dir. Garth Davis, 2016)
  102. To Kill a Mockingbird (dir. Robert Mulligan, 1962)
  103. Fences (dir. Denzel Washington, 2016)
  104. Theeb (dir. Naji Abu Nowar, 2014)
  105. The Adventures of Prince Achmed (dir. Lotte Reiniger & Carl Koch, 1926)
  106. Shaun the Sheep (dir. Mark Burton & Richard Starzak, 2015)
  107. Kirikou and the Sorceress (dir. Michel Ocelot & Raymond Burlet, 1998)
  108. Ghost in the Shell (dir. Mamoru Oshii, 1995)
  109. Corpse Bride (dir. Tim Burton, 2005)
  110. The Iron Giant (dir. Brad Bird, 1999)
  111. 20th Century Women (dir. Mike Mills, 2016)
  112. The Fate of the Furious (dir. F. Gary Gray, 2017)
  113. Free Fire (dir. Ben Wheatley, 2016)
  114. Eyes Without a Face (dir. Georges Franju, 1960)
  115. Room 237 (dir. Rodney Ascher, 2012)
  116. Mifune: the Last Samurai (dir. Steven Okazaki, 2015)
  117. Paterson (dir. Jim Jarmusch, 2016)
  118. Stagecoach (dir. John Ford, 1939)
  119. The Assassin (dir. Hsiao-Hsien Hou, 2015)
  120. Black Girl (dir. Ousmane Sembene, 1966)
  121. Jiro Dreams of Sushi (dir. David Gelb, 2011)
  122. Grey Gardens (dir. Albert & David Maysles, Muffie Meyer, Ellen Hovde, 1975)
  123. The Barkley Marathons: The Race That Eats Its Young (dir. Anika Iltis, Timothy Anthony Kane, 2014)
  124. The Last Waltz (dir. Martin Scorsese, 1978)
  125. Where You’re Meant To Be (dir. Paul Fegan, 2016)
  126. We Were Here (dir. David Weissman, Bill Weber, 2011)
  127. The Look of Silence (dir. Joshua Oppenheimer, 2014)
  128. The Resurrection of Jake the Snake Roberts (dir. Steve Yu, 2015)
  129. Guardians of the Galaxy vol.2 (dir. James Gunn, 2017)
  130. Chicken Run (dir. Peter Lord, Nick Park, 2000)
  131. Meek’s Cutoff (dir. Kelly Reichardt, 2010)
  132. Mindhorn (dir. Sean Foley, 2016)
  133. Commando (dir. Mark L. Lester, 1985)
  134. Sabotage (dir. Alfred Hitchcock, 1936)
  135. The Levelling (dir. Hope Dickson Leach, 2016)
  136. The Red Turtle (dir. Michael Dudok de Wit, 2016)
  137. Romy and Michele’s High School Reunion (dir. David Mirkin, 1997)
  138. Alien: Covenant (dir. Ridley Scott, 2017)
  139. A Fistful of Dollars (dir. Sergio Leone, 1964)
  140. Breathless (dir. Jean-Luc Godard, 1960)
  141. Persona (dir. Ingmar Bergman, 1966)
  142. Belle de Jour (dir. Luis Bunuel, 1967)
  143. Bonnie and Clyde (dir. Arthur Penn, 1967)
  144. Gregory’s Girl (dir. Bill Forsyth, 1980)
  145. The Seventh Seal (dir. Ingmar Bergman, 1957)
  146. Tarzan (dir. Chris Buck & Kevin Lima, 1999)
  147. Brassed Off (dir. Mark Herman, 1996)
  148. Eddie- Strongman (dir. Matt Bell, 2015)
  149. The Spirit of the Beehive (dir. Victor Erice, 1973)
  150. Raw (dir. Julia Docournau, 2016)
  151. Catfight (dir. Onur Tukel, 2016)
  152. The Great Dictator (dir. Charles Chaplain, 1940)
  153. Don’t Think Twice (dir. Mike Birbiglia, 2016)
  154. The LEGO Batman Movie (dir. Chris McKay, 2017)
  155. Beauty and the Beast (dir. Bill Condon, 2017)
  156. Batman: The Movie (dir. Leslie H. Martinson, 1966)
  157. The Break Up (dir. Peyton Reed, 2006)
  158. The Return of the Pink Panther (dir. Blake Edwards, 1975)
  159. Sing (dir. Christophe Lourdelet & Garth Jennings, 2016)
  160. Casa de mi Padre (dir. Matt Piedmont, 2012)
  161. The Lobster (dir. Yorgos Lanthimos, 2015)
  162. Fifty Shades Darker (dir. James Foley, 2017)
  163. Sleepwalk with Me (dir. Mike Birbiglia & Seth Barrish, 2012)
  164. Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping (dir. Akiva Schaffer & Jorma Taccone, 2016)
  165. The Little Death (dir. Josh Lawson, 2014)
  166. Okja (dir. Bong Joon Ho, 2017)
  167. Dunkirk (dir. Christopher Nolan, 2017)
  168. Prevenge (dir. Alice Lowe, 2016)
  169. Daddy’s Home (dir. Sean Anders, 2015)
  170. The Big Sick (dir. Michael Showalter, 2017)
  171. Man Bites Dog (dir. Remy Belvaux, Benoit Poelvoorde & Andre Bonzel, 1992)
  172. Personal Shopper (dir. Olivier Assayas, 2016)
  173. Modern Times (dir. Charles Chaplain, 1936)
  174. The Princess Diaries (dir. Garry Marshall, 2001)
  175. Hausu (dir. Nobuhiko Obayashi, 1977)
  176. Baby Driver (dir. Edgar Wright, 2017)
  177. Onibaba (dir. Kaneto Shindo, 1964)

*=Horror Week

**Best Picture Oscar Winners Week

***John Hurt Week

****Latin American Cinema Week

^ Wifey’s Choice Week

Blaxploitation Week

Animation Week

Documentary Week

1960’s Week

 

Ten Best of the Year So Far…

Your Name

The Great Dictator

Persona

The Devils

Train to Busan

I Live in Fear

Los Olvidados

El Topo

In the Heat of the Night

Get Out

 

Right that’s your lot for this month, you can track my progress on Twitter @clancyhighhat. Now leave me in peace, I’ve got a lot of work to do.

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