As promised we have another batch of top picks of the year in this week’s missive. Josie and RJ chime on on what impressed and maybe depressed them in the world of cinema in 2018. Check out what they thought at the bottom of this edition. We’ve also just received more Ghibli socks and Shout Factory Blu Rays and DVDs (including the much requested Spirited Away) for purchase. All should be in the stores by Friday.
(All titles should be on the shelves by Friday at both Black Dog locations)
Anthropocene: The Human Epoch (Blu Ray only) – Cool, if not depressing, doc about how human activity is changing (destroying) the Earth planet.
Beautiful Boy – Big drama, based on a dad and son’s memoirs, chronicling how a family deals with addiction and things. Stars Steve Carell and Timothee Chalamet as dad and son of dad.
Boy Erased – Big drama about the son of a Baptist preacher being forced to undergo gay conversion therapy. Is this still a thing? What year are we living in again?
First Man – Canada’s baby goose, Ryan Gosling, gets shot into space by director Damian Chazelle (La La Land) and lands on the moon!
Hate U Give – A woman witnesses the fatal shooting of her best friend at the hands of da police. Pressure mounts from different sources as she struggles to do the right thing. Make a good companion piece with Blindspotting or Sorry to Bother You.
Here and Now – Shoddy remake of the acclaimed Agnes Varda film, Cleo from 5 to 7, finds Sarah Jessica Parker wandering the streets of NY after getting some bad news from her doctor.
Johnny English Strikes Again – Comedy spy thing starring Britain’s own Rowan Atkinson as a spy caught up in some hilarious shenanigans.
Kidding S1 – Comedy drama type shoe finds Jim Carrey barely hanging on to his sanity as his home and work life (kids show host guy) fall apart.
Kusama-Infinity – Cool doc about artist Yayoi Kusama.
Let the Corpses Tan – Fun-looking French thriller finds some thugs hiding out on a beach with a bunch of gold they stole. But others on the remote island show up to complicate things. And it also has the best title of anything released this week!
The Night Is Short, Walk On Girl – Cool-looking anuimated tale from Japan finds a girl partying all night and her many adventures.
Mid90s – Coming of age skateboarding flick from first-time director Jonah Hill.
The Sisters Brothers – Based on the excellent book, a couple of brothers in the old west, John C Reilly and Joaquin Phoenix, pursue a dodgy gold prospector. Really looking forward to checking this one out!
The Wife – Glenn Close re-examines her life with her famed author husband as they travel to Sweden where he’s to accept a Nobel Prize. Drama and emotions, I presume, ensue.
The Deuce Season 2
The Girl in the Spider’s Web
As promised, here’s a couple of lists to please your soul…
The Party – Sally Potter
The Death Of Stalin – Armando Ianucci
Zama – Lucrecia Martel
Annihilation – Alex Garland
Eighth Grade – Bo Burnham
Patti Cakes -Geremy Jasper
Faces Places – Agnes Varda
The Endless – Aaron Moorhead & Justin Benson
Gemini – Aaron Katz
Izzy Gets The F*ck Across Town – Christian Papiernak
Link to the full list with reviews and such (and a few films not yet available at Black Dog that we hope will be soon available): https://letterboxd.com/josieboyce/list/best-of-my-2018-so-far-in-no-particular-order/
And last but not least, RJ!
dir. Hirokazu Koreeda – Koreeda continues his journey to define and explore the meaning of family and the bonds we create as humans. A testament to finding your heart and a place to belong despite being in the gutter.
Dir Ari Aster – Another family story…but the worst kind. Finally someone can deliver on a premise instead of pandering to teenager sensibilities of horror. Kicks your ass so hard within the first 30 mins and it only gets better. Creative original and destined to be imitated.
Dir Yogros Lathimos – His funniest and funnest movie yet. Perfect casting and delectably snappy dialogue make this the best period piece in eons. Olivia Colmann is stellar as is Stone and Weisz.
You Were Never Really Here
Dir Lynne Ramsay – This masterpiece of editing and sound design might seem to conventional to some but it’s anything but. Fast loose and one of the best use of sound and theme in eons. Phoenix is the best living male actor after Day Lewis.
In My Room
Dir Ulrich Kohler – This quasi post apocalyptic dystopian/utopian drama hit me in many ways and stuck with me till this day. Moving between genres and moods the film confronts you with myriad of emotions and reflections of loss, love, and purpose.
Dir Gaspars Noe – A hypnotic descent into hell and paranoia in the funkiest phantasmagorical way possible. An ode to 90s dance culture mixed with the worst post outcomes. One of the best opening scenes ever.
Sir Jean Marc ValleÃ¨ – ValleÃ¨ returns to triumph again in the mini series form, only much darker this time. Taking Gillian Flynn’s macabre southern Gothic family drama and adding some creative visual and narrative tools that makes it so good its hard not to watch all episodes in one sitting.
My Brilliant Friend
Dir Saverio Costanzo – This HBO series was a bit of surprise in the last parts of the year. A rich tapestry of Neo-realism centered around the childhood friendship of two working class school girls in post war Italy. It seduced me with its stellar acting and delicate storytelling. Classic coming of age amidst the backdrop of social commentary.
Support the Girls
Dir Andrew Bujalski – Bujalski does it again in this funny and insightful look into the pitfalls of working in the service industry. Regina Hall is a force to be reckoned with and the entire cast is also stellar. Raw and un-glamorous.
Dream Corp LLC
Adult Swim series – Hopefully this will get a DVD release soon so more people can enjoy this overlooked gem. Imagine Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind directed by Quentin Depieux and add a dash of LSD. Hilarious and extremely creative.
Won’t you be my Neighbor
Dir Morgan Neville – Mr Rogers was always too dorky for me when i was a kid. Too bad i didn’t see the strides in reaching children and people he made till i was an adult. A touching portrait of a man whose legacy has had a dramatic effect on how children are reached through media. Uplifting and emotional.
Dir Geremy Jasper – Raw real and authentic. This journey into teenage dreams of transcending the shit hole life you can be born into something great needs to be seen. A young Jersey girl with serious rhyming skills who makes the music is great! So good you will be singing it for months to come.
Most overrated and biggest disappointments of 2018
Sorry to Bother You
A Quiet Place
Anything Marvel related
That’s it for this week folks! Sorry for the length of this edition. So much to tell you! See you next week or in the shops!
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