Sure, I could spend all of January pulling movies straight from the IMDB Bottom 100 and call it a day. Month. Whatever. But things like "bad" and "worst ever" are incredibly subjective. What you think is awful could be another person's favorite movie. As an example, Diary of a Cannibal--the worst movie I have ever seen and no I will never shut up about that--has reviews on IMDB giving it an 8 and a 10. Are these people deranged? Probably, but you get the idea. So while Possessor has been on several "best of 2020" lists, one anonymous person on Letterboxd said, and I quote, "One of the worst movies we have ever seen." Flimsy justification on my part to watch a good movie during this month, but someone said it was the worst! So here we are!
Merry Christmas! My gift to you is me rambling about aspect ratios. No, you can't exchange it for something else. So anyway, you've probably heard of "widescreen" versus "full screen." Full screen is an aspect ratio of 4:3 (if the width is 4 units, then the height is 3 units), creating close to a square. This was the format of most early television shows and a lot of movies got cut down to that for a home release, either losing things on the sides or forcing editors to make awkward shifts to keep the action on the smaller screen. Case in point, the DVD of The Muppet Christmas Carol I have gives you the option of watching either widescreen or full screen before starting the movie, and in the full screen example you can see Peter Cratchit nearly cut out of the shot entirely. So widescreen for theatrical movies is generally better, right? Well, let me tell you why I prefer to watch this particular movie in full screen, or at least for one particular scene...
One potentially bad habit of mine when writing these posts is referencing a different movie. A lot of the time it's a film I've already talked about, but there are also a bunch of times where it's something I haven't made a post for. I keep all the references on a list and it currently sits at 272 movies and TV shows. Holy fuck! So let's work through that backlog, but in a random way! I'm going to roll the digital equivalent of a 272-sided die and that's going to be what we're talking about today. As of writing this sentence, I don't even know what it'll be! So let's roll and... #149! The Life and Death of Colonel Blimp, as mentioned in the Viktor und Viktoria post! So let's talk about this nearly 3 hour movie in the Criteron Collection.
For a lot of people my age--Millennials that are very close to the Generation X divide--the 90's are a nostalgic time. Things were better back then, right? Or at least we didn't have the maturity and capacity to understand how things were not good, haven't been good for a long time, and that a lot of our current problems have roots back then. But, uh... at least the movies back then were good? Some of the movies. Okay, so this and a couple other movies that nostalgia goggles convince us were good. This intro is getting away from me... SO YEAH ANYWAY, HOW ABOUT THE CRAFT?
I love The Blair Witch Project. It's one of my favorite films (that I weirdly don't own), but it's by no means a perfect movie. Writers/directors Mr. Eduardo Sánchez and Daniel Myrick got amazing performances out of the small cast but through some rough means. And its financial success (under half $1 million budget against a $248.6 million box office) convinced every jackass with half an idea and a home movie camera that they too could make a found footage movie. But with those quibbles out of the way, now is my time to gush.
Have you ever seen the music video for "Fantasy" by DyE? If you haven't, here's a link. He's a French electropop artist and the song is pretty good! But the main reason I want you to see it is because it has a twist. A very... Lovecraftian twist. What starts out seemingly normal night suddenly becomes a nightmare involving realities beyond mortal comprehension. And I bring this up because that's basically the plot of The Void, too.
What's this? A surprise Thursday post? That's right, it's time for another month-long event! Every weekday in October I'll have a horror movie post ready for you, dear reader(s). In previous years I've done personal things like "Chwineka Watches 31 Netflix Horror Movies for October" (or CW31NHMO for short), but ain't nobody got time for posting EVERY day. Also I have far more streaming services at my fingertips, so movies will be coming from all over the internet. Anyway, let's start the month off with something actually good: Robert Eggers' second movie, The Lighthouse.
Man, remember when I used to talk about good movies? I don't! According to my lovely archives, the last movie I talked about that was generally considered "good" was last month. Watching two weeks of Mothman movies does horrible things to a person, so I need to take a break from the suck. So let's talk about Mr. Nic Cage killing a cult while high on megadrugs!
Mr. James Mangold did such a good job on The Wolverine, why wouldn't 20th Century Fox give him another shot? And what a shot this is! The second R-rated X-Men movie after Deadpool, Logan goes in a slightly different direction to justify the rating: instead of cartoonish violence, Logan shows how ugly fighting to the death can be. And a bunch of "fucks," but that's a side benefit.
Movie trilogies often follow a pattern: the first is fine, the second is superb, and the third is terrible. The X-Men trilogy is a wonderful example of this, in part because X2 (later retitled X2: X-Men United) is one of my favorite movies, and quite possibly my favorite superhero movie. This is the high point for the X-Men films; it’s all downhill from here! Well, except maybe for Logan and Deadpool, but still.