Criterion Watched List

by Travis Eskins

Created 11/27/16

Edit List

Films in the Criterion Collection that I have seen. Vaguely in the order in which I saw them.

  • I saw this when I was obsessed with 80's action films in high school, and I remember liking it. I didn't fall in love with it like The Terminator or Indiana Jones, but it was good. It's been a while. 7/10

  • A (relatively) modern american classic for a reason. 8/10

  • I remember nothing about this movie, but I saw it.

  • Another classic. Masterful suspense. 8/10

  • A funny and extremely creative film with great commentary on celebrity culture. Almost too creative for its own good. 8/10

  • Classic. 8/10

  • One of Fincher's worst. There are some great moments, but he ending is basically a joke and I don't even think Fincher knew what it was supposed to be about. Even Fincher's worst is very good, though, as the directing is spot on. 7/10

  • Kubrick's first great film. A powerful anti-war film with great performances and beautiful photography. 8/10

  • A generally solid thriller that I found to be a bit sloppy, probably due to low budget and the fact that it is a debut. 6/10

  • This is lesser Hitchcock in my opinion. 5/10

  • I watched this before I knew what the Criterion Collection was. I remember it being entirely unremarkable. 6/10

  • There is some genuine emotion at times, but not much else. 7/10

  • Even when I love a del Toro film, I still don't understand the praise it gets. This film gets heralded as a one of the great films of the 21st century, and I just don't get that. I adore this film. The effects, acting, and music are all great and the story is very effective and emotional. I just think it is a bit too childish and cliche or sentimental to have the reputation it does, but I guess that's the point. whatever. 8/10

  • I loved the first half, with the brilliant imagery of depression and societal pressure, but I remember not liking the rest of the movie that much. Now that I have seen so much analysis of this film, I think I may be able to appreciate the film more. I will definitely re-watch before buying the blu-ray. 7 or maybe 8/10

  • I didn't really care for the romance and I found the structure and random mix of plotlines annoying. I mainly enjoyed the cinematography and the character of Adam Sandler. 6/10

  • I love the songs in this film and I thought it was funny at times, but I didn't get much else out of it. 7/10

  • I found this a bit disappointing compared to Kubrick's later work, but there is some good film making and humor here. 7/10

  • It's been a while since I saw this, but I remember it being sort of funny, but also incomprehensible and pretentious. 5/10

  • I genuinely do not understand what the big deal is with this movie. If the film did not have the main gimmick, than no one would give it a second look. The story is generic and boring and most of the acting is not good. As far as I'm concerned, everything this film tried to do was already better accomplished by the Before Trilogy. 6/10

  • Another solid, emotional film from the Dardennes. The plot is better developed, but is less emotional that Kid with a Bike. I like the brother's films, I just don't really understand all of the praise. 7/10

  • My favorite film in the collection currently. An expertly told and tense story that builds to the greatest ending I have ever seen in film. It's perfect. 10/10

  • I fell in love with the characters and humor, and by the end I was won over by the emotion. 8/10

  • An absolutely beautiful film and the ultimate "gay movie," as well as a universal love story with interesting ideas. A must watch for anyone who has ever struggled with their identity/sexuality. 9/10

  • Not as good as Weekend.

  • Very disappointing compared to The Holy Grail, but it's still funny I guess. 7/10

  • I found this film a bit slow and not as emotional as I imagine it was intended to be. It was still interesting and entertaining. 7/10

  • Possibly my favorite in the trilogy. The imagery of grief and depression in this film is absolutely stunning, and the use of music is brilliant. The second half gets a bit iffy for me, but the ending is great. 9/10

  • Everyone's least favorite in the trilogy, and I have to agree. It is still very good and entertaining and emotional at times, but does not have the same punch as the other two. It feels more like an episode of The Dekalog, which is not a bad thing. 8/10

  • The more I think about the trilogy, the more this starts to become my favorite. This film emotionally destroyed me, but I'm not sure why? Which is something I've heard before but never really understood. 9/10

  • Pretty disappointing after Three Colors. There were some parts I found emotional, but it was a bit too abstract for me to really get much out of it. Will probably rewatch in the future. 7/10

  • I thought it started slow, but I really liked the second half, and I loved the 17 min conversation long take. But I feel like McQueen does things specifically to piss me off, like the absolutely unbearable long take of a prison guard cleaning the floor. 6/10

  • Again, a bit disappointing, although I have come to appreciate it a bit more. Like all early Kieslowski, its a bit too political for it's own good. 7/10

  • Lesser Kubrick, A solid heist movie with good performances. Kubrick hadn't yet fully formed his own unique style, which makes this feel kind of cliche and derivative. 7/10

  • A great story featuring interesting characters first and foremost, with some social commentary thrown in for good measure. 8/10

  • A brilliant documentary and a brilliant film. The acting is beautiful and so naturalistic, which I'm not sure if that is surprising or expected because all the actors are real people playing themselves. It's amazing that an unedited court hearing could be completely riveting, but it is. Beautiful. 9/10

  • I liked this much better than Seventh Seal; this is my type of movie. I found this much more tonally consistent. I was initially grabbed by the great conversations and acting, but fell in love with the surrealist imagery and statements on identity. The repeated scene near the end destroyed me. 8/10

  • This film fucks with you unlike any I have ever seen before, and I love it. 8/10

  • My vote for the worst Criterion I have seen so far. I was intrigued at first, but the story just kept getting less and less interesting, culminating in the absolutely horrid ending fight sequence (also, "Jesus Gris" please kill me now). Most of the acting was fine, but surprisingly Ron Perlman pulls an awful performance. I give it credit for the practical effects and the intriguing first 20 minutes or so, but not much else. 4/10

  • A great modern romance film. The first half had me smiling from ear to ear with the brilliant writing and performances, but I don't think the second half was as emotional as it could have been considering how invested I was. Still great, but had the potential to be much more. 8/10

  • There are some really great horror scenes in this, and every scene with the daughter is outstanding, but I think the film gets too caught up in the pulpy police procedural story-line to be great. 7/10

  • An extremely effective horror film with a lot of hidden meaning to uncover for yourself. A surrealist classic. 8/10

  • The culmination of Lynch's career. Like Eraserhead, but even more dense and emotional. The ending scene had me completely terrified and then crying within a second. 9/10

  • A really interesting and influential sci-fi short film. The still images have a really interesting affect on me when I watch it, where I'll kind of zone out and just stare. I like it. 8/10

  • An interesting essay film of sorts. It doesn't seem related to La Jetee, but it is in a way. Although it is not still images, the shots are more concerned with images that movement most of the time. The images and voice-over have a similar effect as La Jetee as well. A great companion piece to the legendary short film. 8/10

  • I can appreciate the influence of this film, but I don't understand the present-day appeal of it. I got pretty much nothing out of this film. 6/10

  • Another beautifully human film from Abbas Kiarostami. He must be a great actor's director, because the brilliantly realistic performances he pulls out of non-professional actors in this and Close-Up are impressive. This one is all about the conversations. I'm not completely sure about the ending, though. 8/10

  • A solid war film and start for Tarkovsky's career. That's about it. 6/10

  • I appreciated the experiment and it definitely didn't get annoying as I expected it might, but I didn't quite love it. 7/10

  • Interesting ideas and a few great sci-fi scenes, but I guess I don't really "get it." I don't think Tarkovsky's films are for me. Every time someone describes the appeal of his films, I roll my eyes. 6/10

  • A handful of good scenes, but not quite great. 7/10

  • I liked it for a while, but I think it gets a bit too abstract along the way. 6/10

  • One of the few Criterion films I can legitimately say that I hated. It felt like it was building to something, but with every minute that passed I started to doubt that assumption. And I was right, as the film ends with a giant fuck you to the audience. I legitimately felt like I wasted my time with this film, as there was no arc or resolution and I gained absolutely nothing from the experience. I have seen several Haneke films, and all of them have felt like he made them specifically to piss me off. 4/10

  • I liked the style and thought it was pretty funny at times, but I did not get as much out of it as other similar "essay" films like F for Fake or Sans Soleil. 7/10

  • I loved the mystery and just pure weirdness of this film, but I didn't really connect emotionally with anything going on. also I couldn't stand Edith. 7/10

  • Much more emotional than Breathless, but also much less visually and stylistically interesting. Maybe the French New Wave just isn't for me. 6/10

  • One of the most realistic films I have ever seen, with a load of great performances, mainly child performances. There are some scenes where the emotion sneaks up on you out of nowhere and they hit me pretty hard. 8/10

  • A really great romance film filled with fascinating conversations. My theory about this trilogy is that you are meant to watch them at the same age as the characters. I relate pretty heavily to this film because I am a similar age to the characters, but I know others who are a bit older find the next film more effective. 8/10

  • I love the style and the decision to make the film in real time. I thought the beginning relied too heavily on nostalgia of the first film, but it only got better, with the last third being the best in the trilogy. I think the first two are relatively equal in quality, as I related more to the first, but the film making is much better in this 8/10

  • It was pretty fun I guess, but I didn't get much out of it, and It is flawed in many ways. 7/10

  • A really interesting documentary about an important person. There's not much else for me to say. I am a Hawking fan so I enjoyed this film a lot, if you don't care about him, the film will probably not do much for you. Morris brings his usual style so that it doesn't feel like every other doc. Much more effective than The Theory of Everything. 7.5/10

  • I really, really wanted to love this film. This has some of the most beautiful photography I have seen in any film, let alone black and white film. There are also some legitimately brilliant moments of tension and horror, but this film has far too many flaws for it to have a reputation as a masterpiece. First and foremost, all of the acting, except for Robert Mitchum, is awful, and even Mitchum dips too far into camp at times. The child actors were particularly bad, which is surprising considering they are the main focus of the story. And I could talk for a very long time about how much I hated the grandmother character, from writing to acting. I thought the pacing was off somehow, as this very short film seemed to last forever, and there were a lot of moments with confusing character motivations and actions. Also the ending is complete garbage in every way and this entry is already too long. Extremely disappointing, but beautiful photography and a handful of great scenes save it. 6/10

  • There are very few films that I believe have no weak moments, and this is one of them. A perfect film. 10/10

  • I can see why the american remake was so bad now, as the original is just as uninteresting. It is definitely better, though, because it has a certain energy that the remake lacks, but it is still not great. 6/10

  • November 2016
    My first Kurosawa film. My first experience of watching this film was confusing. I really liked the opening scene and the scenes at Rashomon gate in general, but once the different stories of the event started, I found the tone and overwhelming music almost unbearable. Then the twist happens, and I realized why the stories had that tone, I was completely blown away. When any film, especially one almost 70 years old, can mess with me that much, it is an amazing achievement 8/10 maybe 9/10 on later watches.

  • My second Kurosawa. After falling in love with Rashomon, I decided to take the leap and watch all 207 minutes, and I was very happy that I did. What can I say that hasn't been said before. The story, characters, writing, visuals, action, pacing, everything is flawless. A perfect film. 10/10

  • My third Kurosawa. I found this very disappointing after loving Rashomon and Seven Samurai so much. I found the story and visuals much less interesting and the comedic tone was annoying to me. It is still undeniably solid and entertaining. I'll have to give it a re-watch some day. 7/10

    Update: I rewatched this and, while I still don't love it, I can definitely appreciate more about it now. I'm not sure if my overall opinion or rating has really changed that much, though. Will probably still get the box set.

  • My fourth Kurosawa. It has the most serious and oppressive tone of any of his films I have seen, which I found refreshing after Yojimbo. There are a load of brilliant scenes, including the witches and the assassination, and Mifune's descent into paranoid madness is fascinating. The ending is also harrowing, which is not a word I use much. I'm starting to feel spoiled by how great all of Kurosawa's films are. 8/10

  • My fifth Kurosawa. What can I say, I love almost everything about this film. The framing and staging of the characters is completely brilliant and Mifune is at his absolute best. If the film was just in his house, I think it would be a perfect film. I think it slows a bit when the story expands, but it is never ruined or anything. One of the best police procedural/thrillers I have ever seen. 9/10

  • My sixth Kurosawa. His most emotionally draining but also most uplifting film I've seen so far. Shimura gives a great performance and I love the choice to focus on the people whose lives he's affected in the second half. I also love the repetition of the love song, including the iconic scene on the playground. Another great Kurosawa film. 8/10

  • My seventh Kurosawa. Typically brilliant visually, and Toshiro Mifune gives another fantastic performance. I love the horseback fight and duel near the middle and the ending is stunning. If there is one thing I don't like it's the overpowering soundtrack. I think Kurosawa's films work best with minimal music (Seven Samurai). 8/10

  • My eighth Kurosawa. This is more like it. Visually stunning, great story, and the comedic tone worked much better than the first film. Not to mention the great action and beautifully violent ending. I'll definitely give Yojimbo a re-watch because I want that box set. 8/10

  • My ninth Kurosawa. Similar to Throne of Blood to me, in that the tone was much more serious, and although there were a load of great scenes, I wasn't totally sold on the film until the ending, which I loved. The color photography was beautiful and I loved the story of the thief, although I found the overall story about the rival clans hard to follow. I am very excited for Ran after this. 8/10

  • My tenth Kurosawa. I made a mistake and watched this very long film at midnight. I absolutely loved the first half, especially the famous battle scene. Unfortunately, I started dozing off in the second half. I stayed awake for the whole thing but I was distracted and so the second half was kind of hard to sit through. I like it enough already, but I'll give it a re-watch eventually. 8/10

  • I've always thought that a great film could be made from Lord of the Flies, but this is not it. Most of the child acting is horrifically bad and I thought the film felt very rushed. I never really got a chance to know the characters or anything about their personalities. If I hadn't read the book I imagine I would have been completely lost. I don't think the film gave itself enough time to make the descent into madness seem believable, it just seems like everyone turns on a dime and is evil. I will say I like the ending and the scene with Simon and the pig head. 5/10

  • I was sort of into this film for most of the run time, it felt like a cheap Kurosawa film, sure, but I was into it. I liked the way the different story lines were being built up and was excited to see them all come together at the end because I'd heard the ending was great. Then the nightmare/hallucination scene happened, and I thought that was really great. I still assumed there would be some sort of resolution for the other characters, though. But then it just ends with the monotonous fight scene that just seemed to go on forever, and you never see the other characters ever again. Also I found the cheesy sword hit sound effect to be pretty fucking unbearable by the end of the fight scene. Maybe all of that was intentional? I don't know, all I know is it almost ruined the film for me. 6/10

  • A film that I appreciate more than I enjoy. I love the idea of a film about memories and how certain memories are tied to others or songs or movies; and for the most part, those parts of the film are great. I think the film falls flat because there wasn't enough emotional connection with the characters for me. And, although the film is only 85 minutes long, there were too many parts that felt super long-winded. 6/10

  • A really funny film that has a lot of interesting things to say about relationships. 8/10

  • Not as funny or as thought provoking as Tie Me Up. It gets worse as it goes along, ending with the awful "action" climax. 6/10

  • This is the film I expected Do the Right Thing to be. Great characters, interesting story with a lot of forward momentum and tension, good sense of humor, and an amazing cinematic style. The social and political statements hit much harder because of how invested I was in the plot and characters. One of the best endings I've seen in a while. 8 or maybe 9 I dunno/10

  • I really liked the violent or more creative parts, but the actual story itself was not all that interesting to me. 7/10

  • I absolutely loved the pickpocketing sequences and I enjoyed the character study, but I wasn't very interested in the love story and I found the end of the movie (except for the final pickpocket) sort of rushed. 7 or 8/10

  • I really don't have anything to say about this movie. It really didn't do anything for me. It felt like too many movies at once. 6/10

  • An amazing character study as well as a psychological thriller with lots of layers of commentary and meaning to be drawn out. My type of movie. 8/10

  • My introduction to Cronenberg's work in the collection. A film I almost loved in spite of all of the horror trappings. Oliver Reed is great, the effects are great, and I love the story and how you can tell that the director was working through a very stressful time in his life. My main complaints are that that acting, outside of Reed and Eggar, is not great and the film has the structure of a pretty basic slasher, aside from the fantastic final act. Also the sound quality is really bad. This seems like a film that will get better the more I think about it. 7.5/10 for now.

  • Another film I almost loved in spite of my brain wanting to hate it. The lead actor is complete garbage, I found much less substance in this film than in The Brood, and the film is just generally kind of sloppy, with the sound quality and dubbing being particularly shoddy again. But, I can't deny that the effects, sound DESIGN, and story are all fantastic. This is the second Cronenberg film I have seen and both have had a brilliant, unsettling tone that I get completely sucked into, and that is an achievement. Another film that I expect will age well in my mind. In some ways it is better than The Brood and in other ways it is worse. I am pretty excited to watch Videodrome, as it seems it may have the same ideas and tone as these films, but with less of the B-movie sensibilities. I can only hope. 7.5/10

  • I got nothing out of this movie. I was confused for most of the runtime, although I love the sequence of the character examining the pictures. I read some popular interpretations online, and although I can appreciate some of them, I have no idea how I was supposed to reach them by myself. Roger Ebert said it was about a man woken from his malaise and then sucked back into it by his society. I can understand that to a point, but if that was the intended interpretation, I don't think the film does a good job at showing his initial unhappiness. To me, he seemed fairly content with his career and the art he was making. I think if the film showed the character as very unhappy before being invigorated by the process of discovering the mystery, the film would have been more effective overall. I would still think the final act is overly nonsensical, though. 5/10

  • Amazing music and cinematography create a really creepy and absorbing tone. There are some outstanding thriller set pieces here, mainly the train and subway sequences. I also really loved the characters, but I am not sure about the last 20 minutes or so. It sems like something I will enjoy more on later watches. 7 or 8/10

  • Done with the same meticulous realism as all of Kiarostami's films. Somewhere between a romantic drama and a David Lynch film structurally, in the way that it gives us a puzzle and leaves us to gain meaning from it. I think this film sets up its puzzle perfectly. For most of the first half, the characters are debating original vs copy as it applies to art, so when the film takes a turn near the mid-point, the audience is ready to try to apply those themes to the relationship that is unfolding. It kind of feels wrong to give this a rating after only one watch, but I loved this film. 8+/10

  • A simple story told masterfully as always by Kiarostami. Not as thematically dense as Certified copy, but filled with emotional moments, fascinating dialogue, and beautiful, meaningful cinematography. 8/10

  • This was really frustrating and hard to sit through. I really liked a lot of the individual dreams and deciphering the themes behind them, but the movie as a whole felt really badly paced. Also the fact that the lines spoken on set were random and not related to the dubbed lines at all was probably the most frustrating thing I have ever seen. 5/10

  • I love basically everything about this move. The beautiful colors and photography, all the layers in the plot, the magnificent Romantic-Era-inspired score, and the brilliant ballet sequence. For a movie from almost 70 years ago, it felt more modern than a lot of 50s and 60s movies I have seen. I think the film drags a bit after the ballet sequence, but the ending is amazing. I am surprised I never heard of this film in relation to a modern film I love, Black Swan, because they are almost the same film. I am starting to think I just love ballet. 9/10

  • This was pretty disappointing after The Red Shoes. Unlike that film, this felt very dated and just plain goofy. The only things I can really praise are the color photography and the score. 5/10

  • There are some great comedy set-pieces in this film and I think the ending is great, but it is hard to view this as anything other than a piece of history. 6/10

  • An interesting character study with great acting and fascinating, intense dialogue. I don't realy think the film does enough to be called great, though. 7/10

  • Kind of like a great episode of an anthology TV show. It has a utterly fascinating theme and it explores the themes well. I mainly love the odd, eerie tone the film has that I can't quite explain. 8/10

  • Another film that is more interesting as history than as an actual film. I appreciate the realism and the plot, but overall it felt amateurish and rough around the edges. 6/10

  • I think this movie has extremely interesting themes and ideas and there are a handful of great scenes, but I think the movie is just not well made and kind of goofy. It doesn't live up to it's premise. 6/10

  • I could see that this film was going for a layered, meta sort of story, but it failed pretty bad in my opinion. The basic story was fine, but there was some really bad acting/writing and it was pretty mediocre technically. 5/10

  • A great coming of age film with beautiful photography, acting, and vibrant colors. I think it loses steam a bit in the third act, but it ends well. 8/10

  • I feel like this movie wasn't made for my demographic, so I didn't get much from this. The whole film felt really cynical and honestly really antagonistic to men in a way. Also the shocking ending didn't really seem to add much. 5/10

  • A realistic and meticulous (almost to a fault) film that serves as a commentary on the role of women in modern society as well as a subtle character study. The long static shots force you to study every detail and be aware of every subtle change in camera angle, framing, and character actions. 8/10

  • In which a bunch of things happen that have no apparent connection to one another and I don't care about any of them. Seriously, this should have just been a documentary or something because there was no character development or really any reason for this to be a movie. And the Scorsese comparisons are really not warranted, as this movie has no sense of humor. It's a shame too, because there are some serious directing and cinematography skills shown here. 6/10

  • I liked the opening, subway, and dream sequences, but the rest didn't really do much for me. 6/10

  • One of the most beautiful and emotional films I have ever seen. A film about a city, but also about what it is to be a human and all of the pleasures and horrors that come with that. I think the section in color at the end is not as good as the rest, otherwise this is perfect. 9/10

  • Definitely an interesting experience, but I didn't get much from this. I felt like it relies too heavily on the dances themselves, some of which I enjoyed, but for the most part, I was left confused by. I didn't really feel like I gained an understanding of Pina. 6/10

  • Honestly one of the worst in the collection that I have seen. Really bad acting, uninteresting story and character arch, and just plain not funny. 4/10

  • I was hoping this would be more stylistically interesting like Wings of Desire, but this was still a solidly engaging character study with some good acting and photography. The booth scenes are just as amazing as everyone says they are and are a much better version of the ending to Wings. 7/10

  • A lot of us like to think that we are desensitized to the horrors of the Holocaust, but the last five or so minutes of this are completely gut-wrenching in a way that I haven't seen before. I don't really know how to rate this. 7.5./10

  • A gripping and extremely tense thriller with a technique so simple and subtle yet somehow ahead of it's time. More consistent than Pickpocket but less emotionally dense. I will have to check out more Bresson, he might be one of my favorites. 8/10

  • An interesting idea, and one that sounded extremely tailored to me, as I love deep discussions in the films of Kiarostami and whatnot, but the conversations in this were completely uninteresting and borderline pretentious to me. 5/10

  • As beautiful and expressive as any of Kurosawa's period pieces, but with a more somber tone and sensitive style. I absolutely love the use of traditional Japanese flute and percussion music, the mother's song, and basically the entirety of the sound design. One of the most heartbreaking films I have ever seen. 8 or 9/10

  • Films like this just prove how special and talented filmmakers like Kurosawa and Mitzoguchi were. Where as Sansho was one of the most emotional movies ever, the attempts at emotion in this fail completely. Where as Kurosawa'a films are some of the most well-paced and thrilling action films ever, this film is awkward and stilted. The only things I can praise are the never-ending charisma of Mifune and the great color photography. 5/10

  • Another emotinal Mizoguchi film featuring more brilliant camera moves and sound design. Not as good as Sansho for me, but I feel like i am getting spoiled by another great Japanese filmmaker. 8/10

  • An absorbing love story about a generation of Americans featuring some of the best cinematography I have ever seen and a brilliant climax. I didn't think people were making films like this in the seventies. 8/10

  • I like the things it said about childhood, hometowns, and memory, but I thought it was a bit too bizarre and goofy for it's own good. 7/10

  • One of the most joyful and straight up fun films I have ever seen. Beautiful direction, cinematography, humor, and music kept me smiling and tapping my foot like an idiot the whole time. One of my favorite musicals. 9/10

  • A solid drama with great music and interesting, inconsistently stylish directing. I liked the characters fairly well, but I didn't believe the romance and the ending fell flat. 6/10

  • A hypnotic meditation on memory and trauma featuring brilliant and innovative editing. Somewhere between a traditional New Wave drama and a free-form essay film. I love that you can tell how Night and Fog leads to this film. On the lookout for more Alain Renais. 8/10

  • I kind of regret watching more Renais, because I found this almost completely incomprehensible. The editing is really noticeable again, but it doesn't really lead to much at all. The editing could have been more effective if it included some flash back scenes like Hiroshima, considering it is a film about time and memory. The stepson's story is the most effective, but Helene's failed completely for me. 5/10

  • Another hypnotic and atmospheric adenture that contains some of the best editing I have ever seen. The montages say more with images than could ever be said with dialogue. Much more effective at conveying the civilization vs. outback themes than Picnic at Hanging Rock in my opinion. I am even more excited for Don't Look Now than I was before. 8/10

  • The worst Demy film I have seen and in the running for one of the worst in the collection. The music is lame and cheesy, the direction is flat and boring, and the "drama" completely fails. I didn't buy one second of the romance and the ending is laughably bad. 4 or 5/10

  • Another masterpiece of editing and visual storytelling from Nic Roeg. The opening and ending scenes are some of the best edited sequences I have ever seen. I think Walkabout is a bit better because this has not aged as well, but this film has completely invaded my mind for several days. 8/10

  • A visually beautiful and gripping period piece that is as dark and perfectly crafted as every Polanski film. 8/10

  • The ending is legitimately brilliant, but the rest is boring and/or obnoxious. 6/10

  • I didn't like it at first, but it keeps getting better as it goes along, and the ending is a masterpiece. The stand out aspect of this film is the beautiful color photography. 8/10

  • There are some parts that are really great, but I wish the film would slow down a bit. A lot of the film, especially near the beginning, is really fast paced and hard to follow, which only makes the Shakespearean dialogue even harder to understand. The best parts are when the film takes its time, like the ending. Also the dubbing and audio quality are distractingly bad. I liked it quite a bit despite all of this, though. I will probably revisit this when the blu ray is released. 7/10

  • I find most "controversial" films to be disappointingly tame, but this is legitimately shocking and disturbing. It is also a beautifully made character study with great music, cinematography, and social commentary. 9/10

  • I really liked the first 40 minutes to an hour or so, which was funny and original. Once the story gets more "metaphysical" I suppose, it lost me a bit. The ending was a little too on the nose for me. 7/10

  • I can appreciate the style and the use of color and music, but these cheesy gangster B-movies aren't really my thing. 6/10

  • Some of the most amazing and impressive tracking shots I have ever seen and a surprising amount of emotion. The death scenes are some of the best scenes I have seen in a while. A definite inspiration for Lubezki and films like The Revenant. 8/10

  • I really loved the music and the horror-themed scenes and the story was effective and engaging, but some bits were a bit cheesy. I was surprised by the amount of fairly normal drama scenes. Better than most silent films I have seen. 7/10

  • I kind of almost consider this a perfect film. It is not particularly deep or ground-breaking or mind-blowing, but the structure builds so perfectly to the final feast and the ending is just wonderful. It made me happy and it made me want to go out and make something, so it was a success. 9/10

  • I loved the sections in prison and immediately after the escape, but the beginning and ending are not nearly as good. All of the acting, outside of the main three, is pretty bad. 7/10

  • A very effective horror movie with some interesting ideas. I'm not sure I ever want to watch it again, though. I think it is a bit too weird for it own good. 7/10

    RE-WATCH: So I did actually decide to watch this again, and I was completely blown away. I was much more engaged in the story and found it way more emotionally effective. This also made it easier and more interesting to try to figure out the symbolism or messages in the film. I think I was just too on-edge the first time around because of this film's reputation so I was distracted. This time I was more focused and the experience was much better. The climactic sequences are fucking breathtaking. 9/10

  • I expected this film to be funny and satirical, but I was surprised by the quality of the film making, acting, and how engaging the story was. Definitely one of the better comedies in the collection and I will be watching more Altman in the future. 8/10

  • A unique and engaging music documentary. I appreciated learning the history of the group, but the best moments are watching the musicians play and watching them explore America. 8/10

  • Although this is only the third Wes Anderson film I have watched and second I have actually finished, I continue to not understand the praise. It's definitely well made and it has some interesting visual comedy, but honestly all of his films are just so wacky cute zany quirky wow it makes me want to vomit. 5 or 6/10

  • Definitely a unique war film, choosing to focus on developing Che's character and putting less emphasis on the plot, but I don't quite think it worked. The acting and cinematography are great, but the editing style and lack of focus on plot make it very frustrating and hard to follow. There are some really great sequences, but I think it needed a bit of a re-edit; not even necessarily to be shorter, just different. 7/10

  • I held off on watching Ozu for a very long time even though I love Japanese films from the Golden Age because they seemed sort of long and boring and not really my style, but I was wrong. The story and writing are engaging and heartwarming, the color cinematography is great in the way that it makes smoke stacks and power lines look beautiful but also slightly menacing, and the acting is good in a sort of stiff, Bresson-esque way. I mainly loved the satire and statements on modern life; and the fart jokes were surprisingly well-done. 8/10

  • Another brilliant film by Bresson. I used to be a bit turned off by the acting style he often employs, but now I love the unique tone it gives all of his films. The characters aren't really characters or performances, they can be seen as a lot of different things, like a blank slate to project emotions onto or a symbol for all of humanity. This acting style also allows Bresson to focus on the actions of the characters as opposed to emotions or reactions. Most of this film is focused on character's hands or midsection (where their money would be). The ending is brilliant. 8/10

  • Another lovely film from Ozu. Focuses less on humor in order to create a more emotionally affecting story. Everything that was great about Good Morning is just as good here and better in some places. I don't really know what else to say, this is a great film. 8 or 9/10

  • I'd seen three Tarkovsky films before this, and I wasn't really a fan of any of them. They just did nothing for me at all, so I had pretty much decided I was just not a Tarkovsky person (also because the way people describe and praise his films is so pretentious to me). I decided to watch this after everyone was so excited that it was announced, and I am very glad I did because I absolutely loved this film. The difference between this and Solaris was that this film grabbed me from the start with it's interesting story and sci-fi world, and then I was able to to try to decipher the various imagery and whatnot. Solaris was interesting for a bit (and even better looking than Stalker), but it kind of fell apart the more it went along. Stalker, on the other hand, hand me hooked from beginning to end. There are so many great cinematic moments and questions to be asked and it is just my type of film. Maybe I'll give Solaris a re-watch sometime. 9/10

  • Suffers a bit from some cheese and the overbearing score, but this is a smart thriller with a unique visual style and an amazing climax/ending. Definitely my favorite between this, Blow-Up, and The Conversation, but I love that all three exist. One is a weird, socially aware art piece, one is a subtle character study, and this is a straight up thriller. 8/10

  • Ozu's most well known for good reason. All of his films seem so similar in so many ways, but at this point I don't really care. Ozu's films are like a lovely day where you relax and look at something beautiful and laugh and smile but also think about sad things or remember something slightly poignant from your past and you get a bit emotional. That's the best way I can describe them. 9/10

  • Probably my least favorite Ozu so far. The first time the similarities between his films started to bother me. This almost the exact same film as An Autumn Afternoon, just not as good in every way. Still really good. 7 or 8/10

  • An outstanding score, story, and visual style come together to create one of the great masterpieces of Japanese cinema. I think the story gets a bit iffy and melodramatic when telling his long backstory, but the climax is perfect. 9/10

  • Part serial killer story, part In The Realm of The Senses-style sexual drama, and it does neither of them very well. The story is interesting enough and the character study is the highlight, but just not quite a complete package. 7/10

  • The absolutely brilliantly haunting first half and ending make up for the boring, overly talkative second act. 8/10

  • A great collection of Japanese ghost stories enhanced by Kobayashi's visual style and Takemitsu's consistently brilliant sound work. Some thoughts on the individual stories: The Black Hair is perfect in every way. I really liked the visual style and opening of The Woman of the Snow, but I found the ending a bit lacking. Oichi the Earless has some of the best sequences in the entire film, but there is too much boring filler in between; it has no reason to be over an hour long when the others are less that 40 minutes. In a Cup of Tea has some great suspense but mainly I loved the frame story and ending. 8 or maybe 9/10

  • Basically a film made perfectly for me. A highly effective psychological thriller that works as a social allegory with brilliant cinematography, lots of symbolism, and another outstanding soundtrack from Takemitsu. This film takes no wrong steps. 9 or 10/10

  • I never really liked gangster movies and apparently I don't really like yakuza movies either. This was just boring to me. Takemitsu's score showed flashes of greatness, but it was nowhere near as effective as his other work. The same goes for the directing and visuals; sometimes great, mostly boring. 6/10

  • Definitely an interesting experiment; not as daring as Jeanne Dielman and it is worse for it. I felt like the film tried too hard to be dialogue free. Like there were some times when it would be totally normal and expected for the characters to talk but they would just stare or motion and it felt really awkward. I really liked the climax and the ending though, so I guess there's that. 7/10

  • One of the most renowned international films of all time for good reason. The performances are great, the story is simple yet effective, and it's just really fucking well made. Like I was expecting some sort of guerrilla film making from the Neorealist movement because this was my first one, but it was just really good. whatever. 8/10

  • The fact that this is not more well-known in the Japanese films in the collection is a travesty, because this is a masterpiece. It's beautiful, stylish, daring, and a hauntingly emotional story. The kabuki elements like the narration, sets, and scene transitions may be annoying to some but I found them to be fucking genius. There are so many powerful little moments and stories about death and aging and the final journey to Narayama is honestly one of the highlights of Japanese film I have seen. There are a few parts in the middle that are a bit boring or confusing.
    8 or 9/10

  • It has so many jokes and parodies and satires and whatever else in basically every frame. The design, acting, lighting, cinematography, editing, effects, music, etc. are all perfect for the experience this movie is going for. Plus it's just plain fun. 8/10

  • Not nearly as good as Bicycle Thieves because it lacks any real drive or motivation. The whole movie just ends up feeling sort of pointless. There are a few good sequences in which there is some driving force, but the film as a whole is pretty boring and forgettable. The train scene at the end is great, but the actual ending is not. I wonder if this is the first time in film history that a dog was exploited for cheap emotion. 6/10

  • There are so many really great things about this film, but god damn is it cheesy as hell. The synth score is strait-up terrible and the ending actually had me laughing out loud. 6/10

  • I decided to start looking into Indian films after binge watching all of those Japanese films with Ray's most critically renowned, and I am glad I did. Everything about this is great, from the cinematography to the performances and the story. The music is the highlight of course. Like traditional Japanese music, Indian music is haunting in a way that is completely unique. The music, along with everything else, create some heartbreaking moments and some moments of terror. A great introduction to Indian cinema. 8 or 9/10

  • I watched this for a film class and it kind of surprised me. I knew that it was important film, but it seemed like everyone thought it was dated and I just expected it to be cheesy and lame. It wasn't really any of those things, though. The performances are all naturalistic and great (except Jack Nicholson) and the "plot" was interesting and experimental.. I was definitely not expecting it to be as weird, existential, and New-Wavey as it is. The rock music montages never felt overdone or boring or dated and I love the way all of the editing, music, etc. seemed to reflect the thoughts of the characters. The acid trip at the end blew my mind. 8/10

  • Another pretty great Ray film. This one a bit less focused on one story and instead on a family and their lifestyle. I think it suffers a bit because of the lack of focus and it feels long in some places, but it is definitely Ray's most emotional film. 8/10

  • A little more consistent than Pather Panchali, but it doesn't quite reach the emotional heights of it. 7 or 8/10

  • I really wanted to like this so that I could buy the box set, but man is it hard to. I mean, the same basic filmmaking that made the rest of Ray's films good is still here, but the story just didn't quite work. I liked it for a bit once he got married, but then she just dies. I know that death has been a big part of this trilogy, but this death just felt like too much. It felt really unnecessary and It made the whole film just seem like misery porn. Also the actor who played Apu in this film is just terrible. He constantly overacts and has the worst fake laugh and fake smile I have ever seen. 6 or 7/10

  • A pretty interesting and psychologically complex noir film. But, just like every film from this era in Hollywood, it is so melodramatic to the point of being almost unwatchable. I don't know, maybe that is a controversial opinion, but I can't stand American movies from this time period. I give this some credit as it is definitely not the worst I have seen. Nothing about the direction here strikes me as special or unique enough to really single out Ray as some auteur. 6 or 7/10

  • Fantastic and influential cinematography and an engaging enough story, but I just felt distant from this film. I never really felt like I knew anyone and was definitely not invested in their problems. The 'emotional' moments just came and went and I felt nothing. 6/10

  • A little rougher around the edges than other Polanski films, but still a masterpiece. This film is all about the little details, from character moments like Carole putting too much sugar in her tea, to the absolutely perfectly paranoid sound design. The real reason this film works, though, is Deneuve's performance. Her eyes are just so expressive and all of the little actions and details make her descent fucking fascinating to watch. The cinematography is also fantastic, with the long over-the-shoulder tracking shots looking ahead to the masterful camera work in Chinatown. Definitely one of my favorite Polanski films. 9/10

  • A film I appreciate and I really wish I liked. I love the idea of this film and every time someone describes it, I want to watch what they are talking about. Unfortunately, the film people describe is not the film I watch. My main problem is the acting and writing, which are GARBAGE. I can appreciate the style, but even that is over the top and cheesy most of the time. I like the climactic riot scene, but the final conversation between Mookie and Sal is the worst scene in the film. 5/10

    RE-WATCH: I watched this again for a film class and I was really dreading it, but I was pleasantly surprised. Although I still don't like the acting or the excessive use of Dutch angles and the like, I have to admit this is a really good movie. I think I just accepted those aspects and just let the story affect me and it did, because I was choking up all throughout the final confrontation. I still don't think it deserves the reputation it has, I still think Spike Lee's acting borderline ruins the film, and I still think La Haine is miles better and basically the film that this wanted to be. whatever. 7 or maybe 8/10

  • A solid and unconventional coming of age story. There's not really anything bad I can say about it, other than I don't really like the cinematography style and that it borrows too much from Malick. It was just maybe a little bit too cheesy and pseudo-intellectual for me. 7/10

  • Not quite as good as Blow Out because it falls apart a bit in the third act, but it is still a really great thriller with a unique style. I absolutely love De Palma's split-screen compositions and there are some sequences that are just straight masterpieces. The Psycho references were annoying at first, but now I feel like they might be trying to make some commentary on film. I might have to look into that because it could even make me appreciate the third act more. 7 or 8/10

  • Another entertaining and stylistically masterful but heavily flawed genre film from Cronenberg. The acting is pretty much great this time around and the imagery and cinematography are incredible, but I don't think the amazing sound design from Scanners fully made its way to this one. There are still loads of cheesy moments and the plot is a little more nonsensical than I would have liked. I cant really say its any better or worse than his other films. I will still be thinking about it for a long time, just like the other ones. 7 or 8/10

  • I'm convinced Roman Polanski is one of the great directors of all time. I've loved him doing a psychological thriller, psychological horror, political thriller, noir, and a period piece. Now, he brings his mastery of psychological horror/thriller to Shakespeare for this beautiful, violent, and legitimately disturbing Macbeth adaptation. This might actually be the film that convinces me to like Shakespearean dialogue. I missed a lot of it, but when I understood it, it was really great. This seems like one to watch again and again with subtitles to catch every line. 8/10

  • Well, I jinxed myself with that last one because Polanski's debut was underwhelming and really disappointing. Honestly, I didn't find this tense or suspenseful at all and it was just overall boring. Like, I never felt any real tension or investment in the situation or characters, and by the time the "violent" climax came I felt nothing and almost found it laughable. The first time a Polanski film has been anything less than a masterpiece for me. Maybe I just didn't get it, whatever. 5 or 6/10

  • My first experience with anything Bunuel and it greatly exceeded my expectations. It's a simple story, but it's the perfect surreal, dream-like logic of the whole thing that make it great. This works well as a companion piece to Repulsion. I almost feel as if Deneuve's character in this is a version of Carole in Repulsion that never had the chance to go completely crazy and actually ended up marrying Colin. The film gets a bit odd and hard to follow in the final act, but that kind of just makes me want to watch it again and again. The ending is brilliant. 8/10

  • A boring but otherwise passable western. Acting is good and there's a scene near the beginning that I really like, but it's just not interesting and the ending is dumb. 5/10

  • This is funny and I like the premise, but I feel like I missed the entire point of this because I don't know anything about Spanish politics from the 60s. Belle de Jour worked so well because, although it was a satire of the wealthy upper class, it also felt universal. I liked the wierd dream sequences and the end was pretty funny, but this just kind of felt like the Twilight Zone. 6/10

  • Just a really well made biopic and character study of a man who wants to be important but finds himself with no agency in a world of increasing corruption leading up to WW2. The cinematography is absolutely breathtaking and I love the use of color to create tone over the course of the film and its many locations. The opening and his initial crowning just fucking overwhelmed me for some reason, but the film never really reaches that level again. It gets a bit cheesy, confusing,and overly-talkative in the second half. it is still really great. 8/10

  • A fun and iconic noir thriller and one of the best I have seen from this era. The plot is engaging, Orson Welles is a fucking joy as always, and the photography and lighting is great. The zither music is simultaneously the best and worst thing abut the film, as it ruins some scenes but completely makes others. Overall, I prefer it to the melodramatic symphonies that were common at the time. 8/10

  • I had almost given up on enjoying any Bergman other than Persona, but I decided to anther of his most well respected films, and I loved it and now I want to revisit the ones I didn't like. This is a really beautiful and sad and scary look at memory and death and life. The dreams and nightmares are especially brilliant, but the entire film is great. I love all the characters and their conversations and I just really enjoyed watching this. More consistently good than Persona but never gets as good as the repeated scene. 8/10

  • I decided to watch some more early Bergman to see if they would be as good as Wild Strawberries, and this was. Another beautiful film about memories and trauma that I just loved watching. That's all. I'll be sure to watch Monika at some point. 8/10

  • Finally finished all the Polanski films with this odd dark comedy. I loved the characters and their interactions and the cinematography is as great as all of Polanski's films. Overall, I'm not quite sure what to think of it yet, but it was definitely entertaining. 8/10 or maybe (but probably not) 7/10

  • A comedy made especially for me. Combines everything I love in comedy, serious Japanese film, wacky Japanese film like Hausu, musicals, and a touch of something that is uniquely Tampopo. A film like no other. 9/10

  • A solidly entertaining samurai film with a great visual style and probably the best use of light and shadow I have seen in one of these jidaigeki films. The only things I don't like are the annoying sword sound effects and the Yojimbo rip-offs/references. 8/10

  • I love all the characters and the thriller/battle-of-wits sequences. There is a subtext of faith vs. science, but the real allegory here is one of artist vs. audience and the general struggle of the artist. A genre film that is a blast to watch while containing brilliant commentary/subtext/allegory to think about for years. My type of movie. 8/10

  • I really liked some of the more serious moments and conversations, mainly the scenes between von Sydow and Death. The reason I didn't like this film very much is because I found the tone very inconsistent and I didn't like the more silly or happier scenes I guess. I don't know, something just didn't click. Some scenes were absolutely riveting, but ultimately I found this very short film very hard to sit through. 6/10

    RE-WATCH: I stand by this 6/10 even after my new-found Bergman appreciation. There are some really great and iconic moments, but even on only my second viewing they are significantly less effective than the first. It's everything else that basically ruin this for me. The music is obnoxious and overpowering and the film is overall way cheesier, more melodramatic, and less subtle than his films that I love.

  • Basically Summer Interlude but more boring and featuring even more cliches. 6/10

  • A unique and very well made and well shot anti-war film. Seems to be inspired more by neorealism than by contemporary war films. The final battle is great, but the best bit is the night before. 8/10

  • A perfectly fine crime thriller a la Hitchcock. The climax is the only thing that saves this film from mediocrity. 6 or 7/10

  • I have been having a hard time finding the right ways to describe the ways that Fassbinder's films have affected me. I will state it simply: this is a once in a generation masterpiece; one of those films that transcends a filmmaker's body of work and becomes one of The Greats. (Other examples may include Seven Samurai, Wings of Desire, Persona, etc.). Fassbinder's use of cinematography and color is unlike anything I have ever seen and the love story is so beautiful yet so ugly by the end that it makes me rethink the entire experience. I gave this a 9/10 on first watch, but after sitting on it and comprehending more of the story, it may be another 10/10.

  • See my thoughts on "In a Lonely Place." 6 or 7/10

  • Everything great about the visuals of Ali is even better here, but I was left a little cold by the end of the story. Again, I have come to appreciate it more after sitting on it for a while, but I may have to watch this several times to fully grasp it. 8/10

  • David Lynch the human is almost more interesting to me than David Lynch the filmmaker. I could listen to him talk and tell stories about anything for hours and this film perfectly scratches that itch. True to Lynchian form, the film has outstanding music and sound design. The photography definitely looks good, but it often falls into the documentary cliche of unmotivated slow lateral tracking shots. I am very glad that an extremely well made documentary with a unique vision like this is getting a standalone release instead of becoming a special feature. 8/10

  • This one starts off a little bit odd and hard to follow, but only gets better, with the final 20 minutes or so being some of the best work Fassbinder has ever done. Not quite as stylish as Ali or Petra, but it really feels like Fassbinder had perfected his craft and boiled his style down to the pure elements. 8 or 9/10

  • This definitely feels rough and like Fassbinder was still trying to develop his style while also incorporating the Sirkian elements. This is interesting and entertaining to me because of the stylish Fassbinder trademarks that are beginning to develop, but otherwise it is forgettable. The overuse of quick zooms and other camera moves is aggravating. 6 or 7/10

  • The most technically extravagant of Fassbinder's films along with an ambitious, influential, and engaging science fiction story. The color is beautiful and the use of mirrors is some of the most ridiculously impressive and thematically appropriate cinematography I have ever seen. Part 1 is a masterpiece, but part 2 gets a little absurd and goofy (Although, I am beginning to think that is intentional). The ending is brilliant and beautiful and chilling and thought provoking like all good sci-fi. 9/10

  • Godard's films make me wanna fucking die. I find it ironic that the two good scenes in the film only work because of the inclusion of other pieces of art: The Passion of Joan of Arc and The Oval Portrait. 4 or 5/10

  • Wim Wender's take on the definitive man + child Road Movie. A film about the way being on the road and witnessing landscapes affects the mind. The opposite of Wrong Move, as it is about a character who is unable to translate his experiences into meaningful writing or images. It is really nice and charming and a bit sad, but I kind of forgot everything about it because Wrong Move has invaded my brain. 8/10

  • Wender's Anti-Road-Movie. A film about how heading out on the road in search of meaningful change or inspiration will probably lead to nothing. A film about the psychological landscape of Germany even decades after the war and characters who are not interested in facing their fears and insecurities but merely in existing near them and observing from a distance in order to turn them into poems and stories or wax poetic about their dreams. A very unique film with beautiful cinematography. It feels like a Fassbinder film, not because of the Fassbinder regulars who appear, but because of the odd tone and the use of framing and staging. I wasn't quite sure about this film during and after watching it, but the more I think about it, the more I love it. 8+/10

  • Film_30w_m_w160


    Fritz Lang

    Sometimes a "classic" really surprises me and lives up to expectations, but more often than not I am surprised by how fundamentally flawed they are. As far as I am concerned, this film fails on almost every level. The story is completely contrived and not to mention just straight boring. The two early sequences involving groups of men rambling endlessly about things they should already know and that the audience doesn't need to know almost made me stop the film to take a nap. The film also fails to be scary or create empathy with its murderer (a thing I believe it was attempting to do) by barely focusing on him and instead on worthless police procedure. The few sequences involving the murderer before his capture were by far the best and bordered on brilliant. The final trial and ending are laughable as far as I am concerned. Convincing the audience that the murderer was not responsible for his actions may have been easier if they got any time to understand him at all before his ridiculous speech. I just don't really get it. It feels like this film's reputation is based solely on the small handful of "suspense" sequences, which are a very small portion of the film. 4 or 5/10

  • This is good and slightly emotional and funny and I like the characters, but it didn't really do anything for me aside from that. Also it is like really really long. Reminded me of Paris, Texas, which has never been my favorite Wenders film. 7/10

  • I'm starting to think Bicycle Thieves was the exception not the rule, because here is another Neorealist film that didn't work for me. The "documentary style" was just distracting as opposed to engaging and the bad acting along with the melodramatic and unfocused plot just left me distant from the action. Again, I think the simple and intensely focused plot of Bicycle Thieves it what made it into a timeless piece of cinema history. This is definitely not. Also, the transfer I watched was distractingly bad, so maybe that had something to do with it. 5 or 6/10

  • Drama, comedy, romance, coming-of-age, family, crime... This film is all of those things and is never a novelty, because it is a film about life and life is all of that. Yang's visual style and ability to create emotion with a single image is unmatched. A film that is near absolute perfection in too many ways to list, including the clever title. 9+/10

  • After Blow-up, I had a feeling I would not like this, but I had to watch it because it is a classic or something. Unsurprisingly, I found it kind of unbearable. Where Blow-up eventually descended into incomprehensible nonsense, this film descends into pure comatose boredom. Things I like: the whole boat trip/disappearance sequence is intriguing and moody and beautiful; the cinematography is legitimately beautiful and I imagine it would have been really powerful if I gave a shit about anything; Monica Vitti is pretty good. I hated everything else. 5/10

  • Probably one of the best romance movies I have seen. Iconic and simple and copied hundreds of times but it doesn't matter because everything is just so well done. Even the narration, which easily could have been terrible, is amazingly emotional and well-written. This seems like a film that I could watch over and over because because of its length and just pure charm. I could talk for a very long time about all the aspects of this film that are exceptional. If there are flaws, they would be that the film feels a bit dated and that, although I buy the initial relationship, the characters being so in love so quickly is a bit unbelievable. Also, does this film have the best use of a dutch angle of all time? maybe 8 but probably 9/10

  • Probably the most melodramatic film I have seen in the collection. If it weren't so technically fantastic, I would have probably never finished it. It became increasingly obvious that Farley Granger and Alida Valli were often speaking English with badly dubbed Italian and it completely pulled me out of the film. The climax is pretty great, though. 5 or 6/10

  • I held off on this one for a while because everyone called it a "romantic comedy," but I'm not really sure how much more comedic it is than any other Bergman film. I was reminded of The Magician (in a very good way) because of the lighter tone, quick dialogue, and the whole idea of humiliation and whatnot. Nothing about this film really stood out as great as most of The Magician, but it is really good in all of the ways that every Bergman film that I like does: writing, acting, direction, etc. My feelings on this are similar to that of Summer Interlude. 7 or 8/10

  • I watched about half of this after watching Persona for the first time because someone told me it was the "Persona of his color era" and I turned it off because I thought it was boring. It turns out I stopped literally seconds before the good stuff happens. On this second watch, I found a lot more to like in the first half, but the entire second half of this film consists basically of one conversation and it is fucking riveting and absolutely beautiful and really uncomfortable and whatever other words I can use to say I loved it and I cried a little bit. The cinematography is great, although I think it overuses the extreme close-ups, and the use of color is perfect. I highly disagree with the statement "Persona of his color era," but this is a great Bergman film. I might have to re-watch Cries and Whispers. 8/10

  • I don't understand Criterion's obsession with Olivier Assayas. He makes the most boring and pretentious films about the most boring and pretentious people imaginable. Sils Maria was like that, this film is like that, and now it looks like Personal Shopper wont be any different. Maybe it is just me, but I have a really hard time feeling anything for a bunch of rich and pretentious people, whether they are the decedents of artists and collectors or washed up actors. And the themes of this film are so fucking childish and simple but the film acts like super fucking great and transcendent. The cinematography and its obnoxious unmotivated movement was really distracting. I can say that the acting was pretty good all the way around. It is better that Sils Maria. 5/10

  • The first horror-type film of this era that I thought was really great. All of the aspects of the film combine to create a brilliantly eerie nightmare tone. The film does away with the plot/characterizations that often ruin films like this (ex. Dr. Caligari). This film has no pretensions of presenting a cohesive narrative, and it is all the better for it. It uses all of the strengths of silent cinema, but dialogue and sound design help to subtly perfect it and protect it from aging poorly. 8/10

  • This film is interspersed with breathtaking single shots, but I already barely remember anything about it. I remember having complaints about the story and themes and whatnot, but I forgot. I'd say that about sums it up. 6 or 7/10

  • I watched this because Meek's Cutoff kind of blew my mind, and this one isn't quite as good at that, but it is really good. Reichart's style is so perfectly unique and minimalist and feels like a modern update of Akerman's films. Her films can be extremely slow and borderline boring, but still incredibly emotional. Each story is great in its own way and, like Cutoff, show a really interesting look into the lives of women. I think the reason Cutoff is better is because each story didn't really have as much time to develop as the full length film, so they end up feeling a bit not satisfying.

  • My third Baumbach film, and I'm starting to think that Frances was a bit of a fluke. This and Mistress America were both so disappointingly cliche and sappy, which was kind of the opposite of why I loved Frances so much. This has a few good scenes and the writing was mostly great from a comedy perspective. The rest of the film is pretty mediocre.
    6 or 7/10

  • This is a bit iffy at the beginning, but once Roeg's directing gets a chance to shine it becomes just as good as any of his films. This is probably the best screenplay Roeg ever got to work with, because the characters and conversations are fantastic. The acting seems a bit bad, but I honestly can't tell if that is intentional or not because of the odd presentation of the entire film. Add that ending montage to Roeg's greatest hits list. 8/10

  • Wow this is probably one of the most disappointing films I have ever seen, and honestly that really bums me out. The story is just dumb and aimless and boring and there are so many weird moments that just don't need to exist. There is nothing special about Roeg's directing or editing in this film compared to his other films and any decent montage sequence is ruined by the unbearably terrible "alien" imagery. Although he is one of my favorites, Roeg's films have always been a bit odd and hard to take seriously, but this one crossed a line and completely lost me.

  • I am starting to come around on Haneke after the Funny Games re-make and now this, and I think some re-watches may be in order (although I am fairly certain of my hatred for Code Unknown, as it seems even Haneke die-hards aren't huge fans). I actually watched about two thirds of this years ago as my introduction to Haneke and I thought it was boring and long and shocking for its own sake. I remember thinking that nothing was happening, and I was very wrong. Every shot is perfect and filled with information. It is really nice to see a director that trusts me as a viewer to be paying attention and not constantly cutting to close-up or having dialogue to explain something. Not to mention that the characters and story are incredible as well. Haneke's ability to create an emotional moment based only on what the viewer knows and expects and without any manipulative film techniques is pretty much unmatched. I still have some problems with the pacing and I am not completely sold on the ending, but that kind of just makes me want to watch it again.
    8 or 9/10

  • Serious question: everyone talks about how "Cool" this film and Delon are, but what is the appeal of the film if you don't think it is "Cool"? Honestly, throughout most of the movie, I was either struggling to stay awake or laughing. Seriously, the blond guy busting his gun though a pane of glass is the funniest thing I've seen all week, and I have a feeling that was unintentional. Also I found Delon's performance pretty bad. There are a lot of great performances with very little expressiveness that are all about the eyes or little moments (See Above.), but this one just seemed blank the whole way. There are a few good suspense scenes, like the subway sequence (although that one was really anti-climactic and just sort of stopped?), but mostly it was boring.
    5 or 6/10

  • This is pretty much just bad all the way around. The acting is bad, music is cliche, pacing is pretty terrible, dialogue is awkward and forced and nonsensical, and any attempts at "effects" are laughable. There's like maybe a minute or two of decent suspense, but nothing out of the ordinary. I guess the lighting and cinematography are sort of good, but can you really just destroy the scene with shadows and call it good lighting? The ending was fucking hilarious and all of the religious references, including the "in the name of God" line which is definitely the low point of the film, are just as forced and unnecessary as every line of dialogue. There are no redeeming qualities aside from the fact that it is competent and mildly entertaining.

  • Yeah I don't really have much to say. This is just as good as the first two and, like the first two, has its strengths and weaknesses. It still relies a bit on nostalgia for the first film, but less so than the second film did. I think the music in this film is pretty terrible and just way too on the nose and simple. I don't even remember the score of the first two, I just remember the great moments with diegetic music, which this film does not have. I thought the ending was a bit of a cop-out, but the lead up to it was charming so I'm not sure. The point is, I love these films and I love these characters. I love that the films are about so many things but also about nothing. This one seems to have the most evident themes. Like, it is about getting older and long term relationships and all the things in the description on this website, but to me it also seemed to be about pretension or the toll that an artist can have on the people around them. It seemed like a lot of it may have been personal for Linklater or Hawke. whatever

  • Kind of the perfect storm: a perfect screenplay, iconic performances, solid music, and good direction and visual style influenced by neo-realism. Often I find these "classics" only do one of those well. The realistic (for the era, at least) dialogue combined with the multitude of relatively naturalistic performances (not just Brando) make this one of the most important films in the development of American cinema. I absolutely love both Father Barry's and Brando's famous monologues. My problems with the film are the music is a bit much in some places, the directing/cinematography is a bit plain, and the ending.

  • Definitely my type of movie. A musical with great horror sequences, a unique visual style, fantastic sound design, flashy (if a bit shallow) cinematography, and social criticism to boot. It reminded me of another recent film I enjoyed for similar reasons called The Love Witch. Both have a distinct visual style and similar themes of the alluring power women have over men and vice versa. It's a bit rough around the edges, but as a debut, this is terribly impressive. 8/10

  • 10/29/17
    As good as the other Mizoguchi films technically, specifically the brilliant cinematography. The story is a bit lacking in this one, however. The main emotional thrust of the film comes from the story of her having the Lord's child, but the film is stuffed with tiny tragedies that have little bearing on the overall arch of the film. I wish a few of those were cut, that way the film could have been much shorter and the emotional impact of the good stories would have been heightened. There were too many moments that just felt manipulative, like "Look at this person cry now," basically the equivalent of shooting a dog on screen. The moments where the film worked were when the emotions had time to develop before the tragedy, like the story of her son. The best example of a bad story was the sequence where she was married. It was a perfectly well made sequence, but it comes out of nowhere, manipulates the audience into feeling bad, and then immediately ends with no real resolution or fallout. Sequences like this completely ruin the pacing of the film and really make me wish it was about 30 minutes shorter. I really really wanted to love this one. (Also the film quality of this on Filmstruck is absolutely terrible for some reason; I have to believe that Criterion would never release a Blu ray with quality that bad.)

  • A fantastic family drama that is equal parts warm and uncompromising. Definitely takes lots from Ozu but injects enough modern sensibilities to actually make it feel like a bit of an upgrade as opposed to a rip-off. Those Ozu classics can never be touched, but this is a great film about the dysfunctions of a family and how they persist that doesn't try to neatly solve anything.
    8 possibly 9/10

  • 11/14/17
    I did really like the chemistry and the romance and the basic plot I guess, but so many plot points felt so contrived and the directing and editing was a bit shoddy. Like it was definitely good, it just didn't flow very well and some parts just felt wrong. Definitely felt like a debut.

  • 11/18/17
    The second Ichikawa I have seen and they both suffer from the same problems: some of the film is brilliant, but it is ruined by an abundance of cheesy bullshit and a terrible score. The cinematography, direction, editing, lighting, and production design are all fantastic for the most part. The opening scene is a masterpiece and is set to a really great traditional Japanese song, but the rest of the film is destroyed by a terrible score that sounds like a combination between a melodramatic Hitchcock score and a vague attempt at jazz. There are so many scenes and characters and sub-plots that are just terrible and nonsensical and add nothing and there is just too much fucking TALKING. Like every other scene is some old-ass man delivering exposition in an incoherent ramble or someone staring at the camera while a voice-over plays. It was trying to do a kabuki-styled Ballad of Narayama thing but it half-assed it and it ended up a complete mess because of it. It is just sad because, like I said, some of it is absolutely fantastic.
    5 or 6/10

  • 11/18/17
    A fine little thriller with a good Miles Davis score. Honestly the Jeanne Moreau stuff was completely useless and everything after he gets out of the elevator was pretty terrible. 6/10

  • 11/19/17

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