Monday, June 30, 2014

Monthly Round-Up: June 2014 Viewing

With the Sydney Film Festival and a new full-time job June was a pretty busy month. I haven't really done much else but watch films (and Masterchef) but I have just started reading Frank Herbert's Dune, which should keep me busy for the next month. Only two months until Sam and I set out for Toronto and TIFF, so there are going to be a lot of future nights in. 

I watched 41 films in June. Most of them coming during the twelve days of the Sydney Film Festival.

New-to-Me Films (In Order of Preference)

-------- Essential Viewing --------

Mommy (Xavier Dolan, 2014)

What We Do In The Shadows (Taika Wiatiti, Jemaine Clement, 2014)  

Tom at the Farm (Xavier Dolan, 2013)

Snowpiercer (Bong Joon-Ho 2013)

Ida (Pawel Pawlikowski, 2014) - Will be one of the most interestingly and beautifully photographed film I see in 2014. Also one of the most efficient at just 80 minutes. The young lead is a stunner; Ida's story is quietly mesmerizing and deeply affecting.

Two Days, One Night (Jean Pierre and Luc Dardenne, 2014)

Winter Sleep (Nuri Bilge Ceylan, 2014)

Jodorowsky's Dune (Frank Pavich, 2013)

Boyhood (Richard Linklater, 2014)

Calvary (John Michael McDonagh, 2014)

The Disappearance of Eleanor Rigby: Her (Ned Benson, 2013)

School of Rock (Richard Linklater, 2003) - Oh what fun. A selfish, music-obsessed manchild (Jack Black) learns how to share his passion with others, in this case some straight-A youngsters who need their disciplined structure shaken up by his erratic, but all-heart, antics. I usually like Black anyway, but this role was created for him. The kids are incredible, too. You can't go wrong with Richard Linklater.

Fish and Cat (Shahram Mokri, 2014)

20, 000 Days on Earth (Iain Forsythe and Jane Pollard, 2014)

Of Horses and Men (Benedikt Erlingsson, 2013)

Starred Up (David Mackenzie, 2014)

-------- Essential Viewing --------

The Disappearance of Eleanor Rigby: Him (Ned Benson, 2013)

How To Train Your Dragon 2 (Dean Deblois, 2014)

Glory Daze (Rich Wilkes, 1996) - One of the most 90's movies I have ever seen. And I found it an enjoyable and pretty authentic bro-movie that looks at the crises (tenuous relationships, professional opportunities, dismantling routines) that fresh college graduates face about their future. Some amazing cameos, Matt Damon and Matthew McConaughey amongst them.

The Skeleton Twins (Craig Johnson, 2014)

Happy Christmas (Joe Swanberg, 2014)

The Lunchbox (Ritesh Batra, 2013) - Very pleasant. Took a little while to warm up, but it moved me. Surrounded daily by commuters and colleagues yet completely alone Khan's (terrific) character, by chance, finds renewed spirit for life and reevaluates his pending retirement. A sure-fire crowd-pleaser.

Manakamana (Stephanie Spray, Pacho Velez, 2013)

Human Capital (Paolo Virzi, 2013)

Locke (Steven Knight, 2014)

The Tale of the Princess Kaguya (Isao Takahata, 2013)

Love is Strange (Ira Sachs, 2014)

Kumiko, The Treasure Hunter (David Zellner, 2014)

Double Play: Richard Linklater and James Benning (Gabe Klinger, 2013)

In Order of Disappearance (Hans Petter Moland, 2014)

The Rover (David Michod, 2014)

Black Coal, Thin Ice (Yi'nan Diao, 2014)

Frank (Lenny Abrahamson, 2014)

22 Jump Street (Phil Lord and Chris Miller, 2014)

Miss Violence (Alexandros Avranas, 2013)

Re-watches (In Order of Preference...but all excellent)

The Wages of Fear (Henri Georges-Clouzot, 1953)

Under the Skin (Jonathan Glazer, 2014)

The Killing (Stanley Kubrick, 1956)

Nashville (Robert Altman, 1975)

Rise of the Planet of the Apes (Rupert Wyatt, 2011)

The Ghost Writer (Roman Polanski, 2010)


  1. Holy hell man, there is so much gold here! I’m so excited to see many of these films, namely, Mommy, Snowpiercer, The Disappearance..., Boyhood and especially Two Days, One Night. Gonna be a great second half of 2014.

    1. It was a great month, but by going hard at the SFF I get ahead and see some pretty incredible films. I look forward to hearing your thoughts on Snowpiercer, and I hope you love Mommy just as much as I.

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