I honestly didn't plan on this being a mini-event week. I started with 1966's Django, then found out about 2017's biography Django about musician Django Reinhardt, who the western gunslinger is named after. Then I went down a rabbit hole of all the unofficial sequels that had "Django" in the title and noticed Sukiyaki Western Django, an English language Japanese western by... Mr. Takashi Miike? The same Mr. Takashi Miike responsible for Ichi the Killer, Audition, Visitor Q, and The Happiness of the Katakuris? Well shit, I guess I have to watch it! And so here we are. No more "Django" movies next week, I promise.
I will admit that I have trouble deciding what to review here. I want to find the right balance between the extremes of "no one has ever seen this movie" and "everyone has seen this movie." I don't always do that well, as is the case with today's film, Lost Lake, which has only one watch on Letterboxed: my own (this is also the case for A Windigo Tale, a story of the trauma residential schools do, which is... sadly always relevant). No one has heard of this movie! Why should I take the time to talk about it? Well, how else are people going to learn about the sheer madness that is the alternate--and true--ending of this film?
Once upon a time, I started a movie blog. The twist of the story is that what I created was not this Chwineka Watches, but a different, earlier blog whose name escapes me at the moment (probably also Chwineka Watches). The reviews were more longform, with posts being around 4000 words and featured several screenshots that had quirky captions because I was obviously inspired by Cracked Dot Com. One of the movies I reviewed at the time was Otto; or, Up with Dead People, a film about a gay zombie, something I'm redoing here as part of Pride Month. Looking back years later on that early review is weird to me now, because I can see how my opinions and thought processes have changed over time. Lemme explain.
Time once again to pull from the list of movies I've referenced but haven't reviewed, so let's roll the equivalent of a 297-sided die! Yes, the number has grown from last time (The Phantom) because I cannot help myself. Anyway... #96! Hm, that's the first of a trilogy and it would flow better if I did all three movies next week, so let's roll again. #87! And that is... oh. Oh my. This is going to be a weird one.
Folks, this is an extra special post. I've been keeping a detailed list of everything on the blog, and excluding basic information and non-review posts, this is my 200th review! This is huge milestone! And on top of that, today, January 6th, is the one year anniversary of my first review, Under the Silver Lake! When I looked at the calendar I couldn't believe that both events lined up so perfectly, yet here we are. Thank you all so much for sticking around and giving me a little serotonin boost whenever I see your views, likes, and comments. I couldn't have kept this up without you.
Oh, I'm sorry, did you think that just because Christmas was over I'd stop reviewing holiday movies? Well fuck that! There's still two updates left for December, and I'm queuing up things early! Today we take a detour from Christmas movies to "vaguely Christmas-related holidays," such as the very important Life Day! It's a day where you... dress in red robes and... grab your light up snow globe and... travel to some weird void... where you scream? Whatever, it's The Star Wars Holiday Special. It doesn't matter, not like it's canon or anything.
Have you ever watched something so bad and/or dumb that you can actually feel your brain cells killing themselves so they don't have to retain anything from it? A movie so awful you walk away a dumber person? WELL ON THAT NOTE, let me try to talk about ThanksKilling 3 without screaming too much!
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!
I think we all knew that I would review The Room at some point. I own two copies of it because I lent a copy to a friend, forgot, bought a replacement, and then she gave it back. I’ve seen it well over two dozen times, both with the RiffTrax (the guys from MST3K providing an audio file you sync yourself) and without. I’ve read The Disaster Artist, the book Greg Sestero wrote about what a nightmare making the film was, and I’ve even seen the solid 3 out of 5 movie adaptation of that book. So I feel a bit of obligation to review this.
Everything that needs to be said about Tom Hooper’s Cats has already been said, but that’s not going to stop me from adding my own two cents, pointing out some things I haven’t seen other people talk to death. The plot of Cats is… notoriously thin. Cats appear, sing about themselves, get kidnapped by Mr. Idris Elba, and at the end Ms. Jennifer Hudson is chosen to be reincarnated by the leader of the death cult. A tale as old as time, really. The movie adds some new elements, but I’m not all that familiar with the stage musical so I won’t open that can of worms. Now that we have the requisite “summary” out of the way, here are some of my notes.