Friday, 8 May 2015

The Months that were February, March and April

          Welcome to another unnecessarily massive post because I was too lazy/busy with stupid exams to do one each month! All I want to say is that I watched an obscene amount of TV for someone giving her final college exams.


Firsts:
1) Beyond the Lights- I really liked it. It could've been totally cliched but it felt very raw and real.
2) The Disappearance of Eleanor Rigby: Him- God, James McAvoy is so underrated.
3) The Disappearance of Eleanor Rigby: Her- The best one and I really liked this order.
4) The Voices- It's kind of quirky but then it gets too depressing. Ryan Reynools is really good.
5) Chariots of Fire- I liked it a lot, surprisingly. I'm not one for sports movies generally.
6) Ordinary People- I really liked it although it's annoying that Timothy Hutton got an Oscar for this role and Logan Lerman got nothing whatsoever for Perks of Being a Wallflower.
7) Bananas- Super fun.
8) The Liability- Watched it for Jack O'Connell. It was pretty okay.
9) Roy- Worst 2015 movie so far.
10) Spanking the Monkey- Cannot believe that David O'Russell made this. Loved it.
11) A Matter of Life and Death- This was my February Blind spot which I didn't write on... yet. I loved it.
12) In the Heat of the Night- I don't think it's aged very well even though its message still applies, sadly.
13) Fifty Shades of Grey- Unintentionally hilarious. Johnson's pretty decent.
14) 3 Women- I didn't know this was going to be so surreal.
15) Wild Tales- Awesome. Best kind of humour ever.
16) Kingsman: The Secret Service- So much fun! The weird princess bit at the end notwithstanding, it's my favourite 2015 film so far.
17) Ugly- So unnecessarily bleak.
18) Charade- Fun!
19) Zero Motivation- I loved it. More films like this, please.
20) The United States of Leland- It was kind of terrible. Not all Gosling movies are good :/
21) The DUFF- I liked it a lot. Mae Whitman rules!
22) Romy and Michele's High School Reunion- I don't know why it took me so long to watch it. It's fucking brilliant!
23) All Good Things- All the talk about The Jinx got me to check it out. Both the Gos and Kirsten Dunst were v. good.
24) Focus- The leads were great. The film, not so much.
25) Cinderella- Absolutely lovely.
26) Thirteen- Wowsers, that was dark.
27) A Girl Walks Home Alone At Night- It got a bit slow in parts but I really liked it. Totes dressing up as the Girl at some costume party.
28) Office Space- Meh.
29) Dum Laga Ke Haisha- A really sweet and simple Bollywood film.
30) Mad Max- It's like a lame origin story.
31) Mad Max: Road Warrior- THIS IS WHAT I'M TALKING ABOUT! SO GOOOOD!
32) The Cook, the Thief, His Wife & Her Lover- I don't know why but I thought this was going to be a "light" comedy. Yikes!
33) Step Brothers- Laughed a lot.
34) It Follows- It wasn't that scary. I actually went with my dad and he fell asleep during the movie and he hated it. I liked it, especially the music and the way it's shot.
35) Fast and Furious 7- It's fun as long as no one talks.
36) A History of Violence- I've watched it in parts but never completely. Really good.
37) O Brother Where Art Thou?- I'm not the biggest fan of country music so that got a bit annoying but I liked it.
38) The Avengers: Age of Ultron- First day, first show! I was going to review it as soon as I came back home but my brother forbade me till he had watched it and now I kinda don't want to anymore... I still might but in short, I liked it a lot but it had issues.
39) Adult Beginners- I thought it was like a lesser The Skeleton Twins.
40) Lost River- Weird as fuck but not completely terrible. Never going to forget Ben Mendehlson dancing ever.


Rewatched:
1) Stoker- Margaret went Goode crazy and so I had to rewatch this *fans herself*
2) Run Lola Run- For our 90s episode. Still one of the craziest, coolest films I have ever seen.
3) La Haine- 90s episode. Cute, adorable Nino Quincampoix from Amelie made this. Like WOAH!!
4) Can’t Hardly Wait- 90s episode. Fun!
5) Election- Tracy Flick is such a fascinating character. I kinda hate her but I also have mad respect for how passionate she is.
6) Casablanca- Valentine's Day tradition.
7) Bridget Jones’ Diary- Ditto.
8) Chungking Express- New addition to Valentine's Day tradition.
9) The Breakfast Club- For it's 30th anniversary. I'm so scared that one day I will start identifying with Vernon :/
10) Kill Bill vol. 1- It's been too long since I had watched this. I should make a Withrow-esque "__ Things I Love About Kill Bill that No One Talks About" list because god, I adore this film.
11) Kill Bill vol. 2- Same.
12) Captain America: First Avenger- After watching Agent Carter, I got really thirsty for my favourite Avenger (if we don't count Peggy Carter herself)
13) The Avengers- See.
14) Captain America: Winter Soldier- Seeeeee.
15) Drive- It's been forever since I watched this too. I think it's kind of a perfect movie.
16) Zoolander- After the Zoolander 2 announcement, this had to be revisited.
17) Selma- Amazing
18) Star Wars episode IV: A New Hope- I think a huge reason why I can't ever love Star Wars (or the original movies at least) is because Luke bores the living shit out of me.
19) Star Wars episode V: Return of the Jedi- I kind of really like Lando.
20) Mommy- I cried so much this time. It broke me all over again.
21) The Heartbeats- There is maybe too much slo-mo but who cares if it all looks so gorgeous?
22) I Killed My Mother- Anne Dorval is aging like fine wine, isn't she?
23) Scott Pilgrim vs the World- Another one I hadn't watched in forever. I will never get bored of this film
24) (500) Days of Summer- Is the ending a happy one? Like really?


TV shows: (I'm skipping favourite quotes because there are so many)
1) Mad Men, seasons 1-6- I started watching this the day before my exams started because, duh. It's fantastic, of course. I am sorry that I waited so long to start it.
2) Buffy the Vampire Slayer, season 6 and 7- These aren't the greatest seasons but I love this show so much. For one thing, it has one of the best episodes of all time, "Once More With Feeling".
3) Grantchester, series 1- Anna lured me in by sending me links of the hot James Norton. He plays a priest in this show. What priest looks like that? (he's the one in the 2nd pic on the 1st row).
4) Daredevil, season 1- Really, really good. I especially loved the fight scenes (the hallway fight, amirite?) and the way the hero and the villain are so similar. a) Favourite episode: "Speak of the Devil". I liked how much we could feel Matt's mortality in this. Also, the two meetings between Matt and Fisk were both brilliantly handled. b) MVP- Though both Charlie Cox and Vincent d'Onofrio are excellent, I have a soft spot for Rosario Dawson's Claire. I wish we had more of her (one of the biggest flaws of the show for me).
5) The Mindy Project, seasons 1-3- They cancelled it, those assholes! Anyways, I really enjoyed it. An Indian woman who eats a lot and has a thing for hot, white guys and romcoms? It sure does sound familiar... Also, Chris Messina dancing is my sexual orientation from now on.
6) Agent Carter, season 1- SO FUCKING AWESOMESAUCE! I love it. I love the setting, the action, the banter and of course Peggy. Peggy is the badass goddess of my dreams. a) Favourite episode: "A Sin to Err" because we finally get Peggy showing those misogynistic assholes in SSR what a badass goddess she is. b) MVP: I loved James D'Arcy's Jarvis but this show belongs to Hayley Atwell's Peggy. She was already one of my favourite parts of Captain America: The First Avenger and in this show, she balances the action, the comedy and the emotions equally well.
7) Inside Amy Schumer, season 1 and 2- This show is the bestest thing ever and Amy Schumer is my god.
8) Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, season 1- Really really fun. "Pinot Noir" is actually my ringtone. a) Favourite episode: "Kimmy Goes to Court" simply because who would have thought that *that* person is the father. b) MVP: As enjoyable as Titus Burgess and Jane Krakowski are, Ellie Kemper's Kimmy is my favourite. Her optimism is infectious even though my cheeks hurt just looking at her smiling so much.
9) Pushing Daisies, season 1- I suddenly had the urge to rewatch it. Watching season 2 is too painful because of how the show just ended after that :'(
10) The Jinx: The Life and Deaths of Robert Durst- After seeing the way people were losing their shit over this on social media, I had to check it out. That ending, man. WOW!
11) Broad City, Season 2- The show that is my life. Season 2 was actually better than 1. How did they do that? a) Favourite episode: "Knockoffs". We meet Ilana's mom, go underground designer knockoff bags shopping with them, deal with loss of a loved one, finally have Abbi and Jeremy go on a date, have Abbi and Jeremy do "pegging", see two people have a serious conversation about relationships while one of them has a dildo strapped on to their crotch the entire time- all of this in like a half-hour episode. It's incredible. b) MVP: I can't choose between Ilana and Abbi so this one is for Paul Downs' complete devotion to both Trey and his porn star alter ego Kirk Steele.
12) Fresh of the Boat, season 1- This is such a fun show too. I especially like the 90s aspects of it. And how totally adorbs Evan is. a) Favourite episode: "Very Superstitious" Jessica is my favourite part of the show so seeing her go nuts over the number 4 is hilarious. Also the freak out Louis has after removing his jade locket. b) MVP: Constance Wu is killing it as Jessica. I can watch her all day.
13) Better Call Saul, season 1- I have a weird feeling I might end up loving this more than Breaking Bad. Mostly because I feel so much worse for poor Saul/Jimmy. Really excellent show in its own right. a) Favourite episode: "Pimento" because of that long time coming confrontation between Jimmy and Chuck. Heartbreaking stuff. b) MVP: In Breaking Bad, I always thought of Saul Goodman as someone really sleazy but now I just feel the pathos of the character which is so beautifully brought out by Bob Odenkirk. He's doing truly wonderful work.


Books:

1) Tampa by Alissa Nuting- Oh this book is so filthy but so fun! I enjoyed it to bits. It's a blast being in the head of someone so heinous.
2) The Sense of an Ending by Julian Barnes- Ironically, it's the ending I didn't like. Really beautifully written otherwise.


Final tally: 
                                                   Firsts- 59                                    Rewatched- 31
                                                                             Total- 90


Here's hoping I'm better this month onwards.

Saturday, 2 May 2015

The One Where I List Men With Hot Beards Because Of Reasons

        So I'm going to preface this post by saying that this has nothing to do with films or TV or things that aren't hot, bearded actors. It's just a random post that I have made for my satisfaction and it's dedicated to my friend Anna

        If you guys follow us on Twitter, you would have come across the almost daily conversations between us about attractive, male actors, 'cuz that's how we roll. Buzzfeed made an idiotic list a few weeks back and Anna suggested I should make something in response to it and this is it- equally idiotic but more accurate imo. 

         So the first 20 actors here look infinitely better with some sort of beardy-scruffy-stachey (actual term that exists) thing going on and I have photographic evidence to prove it!


Chris Evans
This whole list is because Buzzfeed had the balls to put him in that list. LIKE ARE YOU BLIND, BUZZFEED?! (I realize that Buzzfeed is not an actual person but come on!!)

Jamie Dornan
As awful as Fifty Shades of Grey was, my biggest issue with it was that Chistian Grey was clean-shaven (yeah okay, I have issues. Whatevs). I mean, half of Dornan's sex appeal lies in his beard.

Chris Pine
The man who single-handedly/beardedly started my obsession with hot beards. #scruffygod

Ryan Gosling
I find every Ryan Gosling hot- even the one in Lars and the Real Girl or when he's balding in Blue Valentine- but the hottest Gosling is scruffy Gosling,

Michiel Huisman
I don't know how else to describe it but I find his beard romantic. I mean, he's good-looking or whatever clean-shaven but with a beard, it makes me think of being whisked away on a horse

Tom Hardy
Hardy himself said that he looks cuter with a beard. I would go with hotter/sexier/everythinger but yeah, okay.

James McAvoy
Right?

Jake Gyllenhaal
He was originally on the other list but no, he looks better with a scruff.

Idris Elba
Classic example.

Daniel Radcliffe
I look at the first one and I go "Awww." I look at the second one and I'm like "DAYUM!"

Mark Ruffalo
Classic example #2.

Chris Hemsworth
The second one looks like he could be the sexiest man alive. The first one, not so much.

Jean Dujardin
Sexy Frenchman beard.

Chris Pratt
Yes, all the Chrises are in this list.

Ranbir Kapoor
He was on the other list too but again, he fits better here.

Michael B. Jordan
I think he looks kinda terrible as Johnny Storm tbh. So much cuter with facial hair.

Hugh Dancy
He just looks like such a child in the first picture.

Steve Carell
I realized in the middle of award season how attractive Carell looks with a scruff. Wit and scruff, amirite ladies?

Ben Affleck
No, I don't really find Ben Affleck hot but the beard hides his stupid butt chin! It makes all the difference in the world.

Ranvir Singh
Ew I feel gross just including him but in spite of myself, I am attracted to the second picture. Ew ew ew!


       And now for 5 actors who are equally hot no matter what. Bastards.


Michael Fassbender
He is never not hot.

Vincent Cassel
He was in the first list originally but then I rewatched Black Swan and goddamnit, this man can get it! Also, a bit of Lea Seydoux for additional hotness!

Henry Cavill
He's easily one of the most beautiful men on this earth, facial hair or no facial hair.

Tom Hiddleston
I can't choose.

Benedict Cumberbatch
Nope.

AND I'm done! Please don't unfollow me because of my shallowness!!

Friday, 1 May 2015

Thoughts

This week's post has some really, seriously serious stuff and a lot of normal, dumb shit one expects from this blog. Enjoy, I guess.

1) So, last week was a pretty stressful week. Everyone knows by now what happened in Nepal. We felt the tremors of the original earthquake and many aftershocks later. That first tremor on the morning of the 25th was the strongest and longest tremor I have ever felt. It was almost funny at first- as my friend described it, it felt like we were surfing- but then it started to get scary. I live with my grandparents and at the time, it was only me, my grandmother and our maid in the apartment, which is on the 3rd floor of our elevator-less building. My grandma has a bad leg and at that point, everything I had ever read about what to do in an earthquake situation started going through my head. Thankfully, and I really mean that, nothing worse happened and we didn't have to take any measures. There was another rather strong tremor the next day and for about four days, I just permanently felt like I was at sea. Like every time I thought about tremors, I felt them. This is obviously nothing, rather minus nothing, compared to what the real victims of the Nepal earthquake went through. Watching the death toll rise every hour or so was terrifying too. It was just a strange feeling to have felt something, however slight, that caused so much destruction. I really don't want this to sound like I'm making this about me. Oh god, I hope I am not Hannah Horvath-ing this awful thing. I just really wanted to share this. It was something that I couldn't stop thinking about and I just wanted to put it in words.

2) That was the really, seriously serious stuff. Let's go revert back to what this blog is about. Harry Potter! Doctor Who! Ryan Gosling! Abs! MAN-BUTT! Okay, we're back.

3) I also gave the last of my college exams this week. So I am currently at that awkward not-an-undergraduate-not-really-a-graduate phase. I have some free time in my hands but I have to give a couple of entrance tests to qualify for post-graduate courses in May. Once I have selected a college, I will be living on my own for the first time in my life. I am really excited/anxious about that. And I will be learning film-making properly and I can start actually doing what I want to truly do in life (hopefully) :) Yeah, so that was an update about my life or whatever right now. How are YOU guys?

4) Xavier Dolan had announced that he's making The Death and Life of John F. Donovan with Jessica Chastain and Kit Harrington (who I have officially warmed up to) but before that, he's going to make Juste La Fin Du Monde or Only the End of the World which will star *cue drum-roll and fangirl screaming* Marion Cotillard, Lea Seydoux, Vincent Cassel, Gaspard Ulliel and Nathalie Baye. I am not that familiar with Baye's work but the other four- oh my gawd!!! Like not only am I a huge fan of their acting, but I swear I have had (or rather still do) crushes on all of them. I mean, holy shit, this film is going to look soooo beautiful! It's based on a play by Jean-Luc Lagarce about a dying writer who comes back to his family after 12 years (why is everything 12 years long now??) and I just know I am going to be destroyed by it but goddamn, I want it in my life! Dolan's only 26 and he's making friggin' 2 movies this year with certified stars and acting giants (and Harrington) and what the fuck is even my life?!

5) Obvious Child was one of my favourite films of last year and its director Gillian Robespierre is now making a show with its star Jenny Slate and Ari Graynor (who I have loved since Nick and Norah's Infinite Playlist). Yayyyyy! It's been described as "two gutsy born-and-raised New Yorkers who discover each other in their 30s" and they then decide to go on a road trip after making a film together. I can't wait.

6) Speaking of comedic female duos, you guys must know about my crazy love for Broad City. Two of its writers, Lucia Aniello and Paul Downs (who plays the hilarious Trey on the show) are going to write an all-female spin-off of 21 Jump Street. I can only hope and pray that they get Abbi Jacobson and Ilana Wexler, aka my personal goddesses, to star as leads. As for the Jonah Hill and Channing Tatum characters, they are apparently going to be a part of the next Men In Black movie because this is some shared universe? Also, did you guys know that they're making another of those Dan Brown-Tom Hanks movies and it has Felicity Jones in it? I completely missed its announcement and I am baffled as to why it's even being made. Not even my undying love for Ewan McGregor could make me watch Angels and Demons.

7) Videos- I can't choose which form of objectification of the two Avengers' Chrises by Ellen DeGeneres on her show was better-

Okay, I can. It's Hemsworth (can you say life goal much?) but Evans is so cute!

8) Ava DuVernay got a Barbie doll made of her! That's soooo cool! Like, who even needs an Oscar when you have your own Barbie? This has actually become a life goal because I was OBSESSED with Barbies as a kid and I didn't even know this was a thing that was possible. Also, I really want the DuVernay Barbie but it's not in production and even if it was, it will never sell in India *sighs*.

9) Trailers- Legend looks fun and brutal and it has 2(!!) Tom Hardys. I also spotted Kingsman star Taron Egerton in it so I am definitely looking forward to it a lot. I forgot to post about the Black Mass trailer which also I liked. I can only hope that this is a return to form for Johnny Depp. I don't know about you guys but I think Irrational Man looks great. I adore both Joaquin Phoenix and Emma Stone and I like that both of their characters seem to be narrating. And now for something terrible- the Fifty Shades Darker teaser :X :X I mean, why?

10) Finally, as much as I like looking at Sam Heughan's ass, my true Outlander crush is Caitriona Balfe. Not only is she an amazing actress, she's absolutely stunning to look at. Some reviewer called her a brunette Cate Blanchett and I can see that. Can you?
Wowsers.


And that's it. Bye, guys. I am not Hannah Horvath!

Friday, 17 April 2015

Thoughts

     I know I said that I'm on hiatus but too much has been happening in the movie world and Twitter barely does justice to my deep, profound thoughts on them, and so here we are!

1) GOSLING FANGIRL TIME!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!- So deep, yes? Anyways, not gonna lie, this was kind of the whole reason to make this post. The Gos has been sort of M.I.A. since Only God Forgives and, of course, it's been dreadful. This week he has answered all my (and, like, other people's. Whatever) prayers. First, the news broke out that he will star in his Disneyland buddy Guillermo del Toro's Haunted Mansion, which is awesome. Reportedly, this isn't as scary as Crimson Peak is, rather it's a supernatural family film (whatever that means). Next, it was reported that Gos and Emma Stone will replace Miles Teller and Emma Watson in Damien Chazelle's next, the musical La La Land. I was already really excited about this movie because of Chazelle and as much as I adore Teller and Watson, I am wayyyy crazier about the Gos and Stone, who have great onscreen chemistry together as seen in Crazy, Stupid, Love and even Gangster Squad. Plus, I have greater faith in their singing abilities. And then came the news that sort of pushed me over the edge. While everyone was losing their shit over the new Star Wars movie (yes, it's exciting but calm down), I had a massive freak out about the news that the Gos may be starring in the Blade Runner sequel. LIKE OHMYGODIDEAD!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! (That was an example of how coherent my thoughts were after I read about this). Normally, I wouldn't be this pumped about a sequel to a film that is as perfect as Blade Runner but the inclusion of Denis Villeneuve had already warmed me to the idea. Then came the Gos news and the thought of him as a blade runner or a replicant or anything really- FUCK YEAH! I can't wait. For any of these. All seem like really good projects and by directors who I already love. Yaay for Gos!

2) The Cannes Film Festival lineup was just announced and many of my most anticipated films of this year are on it like Carol, Macbeth, Sicario, The Lobster, Irrational Man and Mad Max: Road Warrior, plus other films that sound really interesting like Louder Than Bombs, The Sea of Trees and Mountains May Depart. There are also two Indian films entering the festival- Masaan directed by Neeraj Ghaywan and Gurvinder Singh's The Fourth Direction. As always, I wish I could go there and watch the movies but since that's not gonna happen, I hope these movies are good and I don't have to wait for forever to watch them.

3) Eddie Redmayne is in talks to star as Newt Scamander in the Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them movie trilogy. I like Redmayne and I understand that he's hugely bankable right now and he would be good in this role, but after rumours spread about Matt Smith circling the role, I can't help but be disappointed by their actual choice. Sorry to go full Whovian-Potterhead head on you but Smith is such a Hufflepuff. He's already played a role that resonates with both children and adults alike and he would have been perfect! Also, Smith and badgers are already a thing :(

4) I am obviously dying for The Avengers: Age of Ultron and it's getting some really interesting reviews so far. One of the main reasons I will love this movie is its cast. Such crazy, awesome dorks-
Peter Pan :')

5) Trailers- Um, it's been too long to talk about ALL the trailers so I'll just talk about the ones I've been obsessing over for the past few weeks. Let's start with The Hateful Eight teaser. I love it. I think all teasers should be like this- actually teasing us by not blatantly showing what the film is about. I know there must be a hundred clues in the teaser which we'll understand once we've watched the movie but for now, it's just cool and bloody and fun. The new Star Wars trailer is pretty cool too. It has Han Solo and Chewbacca in it so yay for that. I just wish there was more Oscar Isaac because, well, duh. Ant-Man finally looks totally awesome. The new trailer gives us an idea of Ant-Man's powers which is good because until now, I was basically going to watch it for Paul Rudd's abs. I have declared everywhere that Mad Max: Road Warrior has my favourite trailers of all time and this one is no different. Goddamnit, I want this film in my life right now! Speaking of, how wonderful does Me and Earl and the Dying Girl look? I saw the trailer and I knew I would love it.  An older trailer that I really loved was of Slow West's. It looks like a really fun movie, which I wasn't expecting. Plus, the shot of Fassy sitting and smoking his cigar is my desktop wallpaper because, um, duh. Spectre is another trailer that's been out for a while which I really liked it. It looks stunning, though I wish Lea Seydoux was in it. The Suffragette teaser is a bit weird. The music is too loud and I'm not sure that #VotingMatters is the best way to promote a film. Dil Dhadakne Do is a new Bollywood film by Zoya Akhtar and it actually looks really good. I like its cast and dysfunctional families is a rare subject for a Bollywood film. Coming to television, True Detective season 2's teaser trailer is quite good as it doesn't really tell us anything about the story and because of Colin Farrell's mustache. Orange is the New Black season 3 trailer is even better. I mean, #SorryNotSorry is what I'm talking about, man! That's an awesome hashtag. Learn something, Suffragette!

6) Finally, Anna Kendrick spoke my mind when she tweeted this-
I mean...
God, I've missed this.


I don't know when I'll be doing this next. I should have a few posts up but I'm on a Mad Men binge atm so no promises. Bye all :)

Friday, 13 March 2015

Special Super Random Thoughts Post About Death and Disney

          Hi guys! Long time, no see etcetera.
 
          Okay so it's like 3:45 am here and I was in my bed trying to sleep but I couldn't because I was having my occasional thoughts about aging and mortality and about how I am going to age and then DIE one day and I was thinking of how I will be 70 years old in 2062 (if I don't DIE that is, duh) and then I thought about how Disney will still be announcing sequels then and now I am very confused about what to think/feel. I mean, does anyone else feel that Disney is going to be announcing sequels till the end of time? Isn't it weird/creepy?

         So yeah, I wanted to share that with you guys (I would have tweeted it but it's too long and did I mention it's 3:45 am here?).

         Also, since we're on the subject, here are my two cents of the Tim Burton's live-action Dumbo remake and Frozen 2:

1) Why, Tim Burton? Why?! Also dafuq, Disney? Dumbo is an extremely depressing and disturbing movie as it is and I can't even imagine the trainwreck this film will be. Tim Burton, you were meant for greater things!!!

2) I am not completely surprised that Frozen 2 is a thing but I swear, if it isn't about Elsa falling in love with her Disney princess, I am so not watching it! (Okay I am but still!)

        Sorry if this was a waste of your time, guys. Here's Chris Hemsworth's abs and also the rest of him to make it up :D



         I would also like to add that this blog is probably on hiatus till my exams get over in May (I may or may not post super random stuff like this so yeah, Idk). Byeeeeeeeeeeeeee!!

Wednesday, 18 February 2015

"I fell in love with him the way you fall asleep: Slowly, and then all at once."- MY FAVOURITE 25 FILMS OF 2014

          I saw 132 2014 films which is probably the most I have ever seen of any year. My first 2014 film was Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit and the last one was The Disappearance of Eleanor Rigby: Her, which also gives you a sort of idea of the range of the films from last year. It had everything and I mostly loved all of it. I mean, if you go through my Letterboxd list, I honestly only really dislike the last 15-20 movies. So, it has definitely been a task choosing my top 25. I wish I could have gone with a smaller number but it wasn't possible because of the caliber of these films.

         One thing I noticed about my list is that most of the films are either bleak as hell or full of exhuberance and humour. In fact, the higher one goes on the list, the more fun my choices become. I think I chose heart over matter this time but I don't regret anything. I like films that make me happy. These films did. So without further adieu, these are my picks:


25.
The Double
I am a crazy Submarine fangirl so I was super excited to see what Richard Ayoade does next and The Double didn't disappoint. One of the most unique looking and sounding films of last year, it also features a spectacular Jesse Eisenberg performance (or two). Plus, it has Fight Club-esque elements so, obviously, I was pleased.


24.
Starred Up
I don't know how else to put it but to say that this film explores emotions through violence. It actually made me cry at the end which I wasn't expecting at all. It's very gritty and scary but there is a sensitive side to it as well. It also has fantastic acting all around and it has put my man, Jack O'Connell, in the well-deserved spotlight.


23.
Force Majeure
Many of the films in my list have to do with expectations put on people based on their gender. Starred Up was one, Force Majeure is another. This is a very darkly funny look at the male ego and what happens when a man doesn't react the way he is required to. It is also a gorgeous film and has the best crying scene that I have ever watched on film.


22.
Only Lovers Left Alive
Oh it's just so cool and romantic and dreamy. The cast is perfect. Even smaller roles like that of Mia Wasikowska and Jeffrey Wright stick with you long after the film is over. Also, it made vampires awesome again.


21.
The Babadook
I feel that the best horror movies are rooted in something real and emotional and The Babadook has that. It's a film about a mother's anxiety and guilt about her troubled son and their complicated past and all of this manifests in the form of the dreaded Babadook. It is also very cleverly made, my favourite thing about it being the Babadook book itself.


20.
PK
Rajkumar Hirani is my favourite Indian filmmaker and PK once again proved this. Tackling religion in a country like India is one of the most difficult things one can do, but then also managing to make a wholly entertaining film with lots of heart in it- that needs to be lauded.


19.
Locke
I had no idea what Locke was going to be about when I started watching it. Turns out, it is also about the male ego- the way one man, because of his past, has envisioned his life and during this car journey, everything he has ever built is put at stake and it is up to him to come to terms with this situation. It's riveting in terms of its story, acting (a phenomenal Tom Hardy is our sole hero) and the way the whole thing executed.


18.
Selma
One of my favourite things about Selma was its focus. I haven't seen many biopics that are centred like that, especially not in 2014. It is a story about one event and how it affects everyone connected to it and how that has repercussions not only in the time of when the film is set but even till now. It is a fantastically well-made film and one that is painfully relevant in the intolerant and oftentimes inhumane world we live in.


17.
Pride
This was originally going to be my favourite shot of 2014 not because it is some cinematographic gem (why I had to leave it out of my best shots list in the end :() but because it is one of the most beautiful moments in the cinema of last year. In it, a person comes out to a friend and then they just continue preparing bread for sandwiches because their relationship is based on something beyond sexual preferences and there is total acceptance of that between them. The film is full of these tiny but significant moments of human kindness and friendship and it is, therefore, simply a joy to watch.


16.
Birdman
I still feel terrible about not watching it in the theatre because I am fairly certain it would have been higher in my list if I had. Still, this film is a spectacle to watch and not simply because of the way it is shot but also due to its story, themes and acting. It is also very funny which I didn't expect it to be at all.


15.
Nightcrawler
Speaking of funny, there were so many moments of uncomfortable laughter during this film. But I couldn't help myself! It is a very clever film that gives us one of the most compelling monsters of our time in the form of Louis Bloom. It boasts of a game-changing performance by Jake Gyllenhaal and it totally makes the viewers complicit in the dirtiness that the film portrays. I enjoyed the hell out of it.


14.
Under the Skin
I really expected the film to go over my head and me hating it as a result. Instead, I loved it. The striking visuals and eerily fantastic score aside, this film subverts one's ideas about sexual predators, by literally putting the woman on the front seat. It is also about the beauty of this world and how it is perceived by an outsider. A wholly unnerving work of art that does get under one's skin and stays there.


13.
The Grand Budapest Hotel
This is the Wes Anderson film that even Wes Anderson haters like. And I love him so of course I cherish this film. It is as beautiful as it is funny. I do think it loses its footing a bit which is why it's not higher up on this list but on the whole, it makes one wistful for a place and time that probably never existed until Anderson made it real for us.


12.
Calvary
I have a thing for films about religion and Calvary had me hooked from its legendary first line itself (for those who don't know, it's "I first tasted semen when I was 7 years old." This is said during confession in a church- I know, right?). It is a bleak film that gives us a week-long look into a modern-day priest's life and the people and circumstances that he has to deal with while also trying to keep his faith alive. Of course, it has the McDonagh humour there too and a truly excellent ensemble lead by the one and only Brendan Gleeson, who gives his best performance to date in it.


11.
Queen
One of the first 2014 films I fell madly in love with and which remained in my top 10 until very recently. It is a very fun film about a simple Indian girl who goes on her honeymoon alone, which is where she finds herself. Much like English Vinglish from a couple of years back, this film also tackles the issue of the Indian woman's emancipation though on a broader scale. The film takes very smart decisions with the course of its heroine's adventures and I sincerely hope this is the start of a new trend in Bollywood.


10.
The Lego Movie
I really do feel that this is one of the most intelligent films of last year. It is full of contradictions that work almost miraculously. It is about a commercial product but it satirizes corporations. It makes fun of the "Chosen One" trope but it also pays homage to it. It is about creativity as much as it is about following rules. Most shocking of all, it has a fun Batman! Mind = Blown.


9.
Snowpiercer
This is the film which finally replaced Queen and that too upon rewatch. As much as the shock factor is responsible for the impact the film has on the first watch, knowing about it makes it even richer upon subsequent viewings. It is a very dark movie that explores questions about humanity and tyranny but also a really thrilling one where we never know what to expect. It has a truly tragic hero and one of the most fun villains of last year. The train itself is a marvel (no pun intended), through which we see some of the most spectacular sets and visuals of last year.


8.
Two Days, One Night
This is a movie that couldn't be more different than its predecessor in its setting and themes but is also something of a thriller. Of course it takes place in a very realistic backdrop and the conflict that drives the film seems very trivial but the amazing thing about the film is how it manages to give it its due importance because that's how real life is. It's the small things that matter and even those stand for something bigger like individual versus community, as shown in the movie. Added to that, we have the always sensational Marion Cotillard delivering yet another superb performance that elevates the film even more.


7.
Nymphomaniac, vol. 1
I chose not to consider Nymphomaniac as one big movie because to me, the first part can exist almost completely on its own. I mean, it does have my second most favourite ending of the year (#1 ending is coming next) and I don't particularly think of it as a cliffhanger but rather as another instance of Lars von Trier's twisted humour. 
Nymphomaniac, vol. 1 is the most entertaining von Trier film that I have seen and it's one of the most enjoyable films of last year for me. I found most of it hilarious, from the way numbers and angles appear on screen to Seligman's academic approach to everything Joe says to Joe's deadpan delivery, especially during the penis catalogue, to obviously the Mrs. H incident and so on. There are also moments of sheer beauty in this film and even the darker parts have an emotional resonance to them and are not for shock value (which, unfortunately, most of vol. 2 is). I think the movie is a very interesting exploration of a young girl's sexuality and I appreciate the way it is tackled. If only von Trier had not, well, von-Triered the second part, the whole story could have been so much richer.


6.
Whiplash
I just love how confident this film is. Nothing in it is out of place. It is a precise, stylish, gut-wrenching look at the beginnings of an artist and the ruthless teacher who gets him to that place. I have spoken/written enough about its ending. I love it to bits. In its entirety, however, there are other films I love more but it is definitely a game-changing movie for me because it has completely transformed the way I look at films now.


5.
Obvious Child
I just feel like gushing every time I talk about this film. An abortion romcom that never makes light of its issues but still manages to be incredibly funny and real and lovely. The writing, the characters, Jenny Slate's wonderful lead performance- all of it is on point. And of course, I have a soft spot for romcoms and any film which tries to find new directions in the genre, which Obvious Child does remarkably, has all my love.


4.
Gone Girl
(That btw is the funniest moment of the film for me.)
Gone Girl is just so many things- it's a murder mystery, an investigation into the lies that make a marriage, a satire about media, a look into societal expectations of what makes a "cool girl" and a "good guy" and how it tears it apart, a Hitchcockian thriller and so on. I basically think Fincher is God and in this film, he has teamed up someone with an equally twisted mind and sense of humour- Gillian Flynn. Both of them together, along with one of the best casts of the year, have given us this beautiful pulp masterpiece. I'm not even going to start with how great Rosamund Pike is in it because I'll never stop. It's just an excellent film that keeps on giving.


3.
Mommy
This film is the most alive movie I have ever seen. It is very hard to write about it because I don't have anything to compare it to. Sure, the plot isn't something very unique and Xavier Dolan himself has tackled many of its issues in his earlier films, but the film is bursting at its seams with energy and life. Even in the quieter moments, it gets to you because you are so involved with what you are seeing. And what you are seeing are these beautiful, flawed people who love each other but are also constantly hurting each other and it's just so immersive that you're left devastated by the end. Plus, there's the cinematography and the music and the acting and gosh, everything! Just like Whiplash but on a bigger scale, I will never look at movies and what they can achieve the same way again after having watched Mommy.


2.
Guardians of the Galaxy
As much as I love the space epic elements and all the fighting and cool shit in it, the ultimate reason why this film is so high up is its humour. It is precisely the kind of humour I love. AND there are like so many types within that! There's deadpan, sarcastic, plain fucking rude etcetera. Also, the humour has a place within the story of the film just like its amazing soundtrack does. As much as the film sticks to the Marvel formula, it also deviates from it in the ballsiest of ways and it actually references it IN the movie itself and I have mad respect for all of that. Finally, it is friendship that saves the galaxy. If that doesn't make you feel things, you're basically the grass that Rocket is made to kick.


1.
We Are the Best!
This film gives me ALL OF THE FEELS!
I have, again, spoken a lot about it on the podcast, but to give a gist of it, (I'm going to go into deep stream-of-consciousness mode now) the story of these three 13 year old Swedish girls from the 80s reminded me of my own teenage which took place in mid-2000s in Dubai and though the settings couldn't be more different, the fact is that this film is a celebration of female friendship at that age and I know what that feels like. I'm sure even guys can relate to it- when you have your own group of misfits and those moments when you feel like even more of a misfit but your friends are always there for you. And this is the age when adolescence is just starting and it's confusing and fun and the film captures all of that!

It may be set 30 years in the past but it takes place very much as the girls are living it. Therefore, it feels immediate and spontaneous, just like the song the make up. And oh god, that song was when the film had completely won me over because I WAS THAT GIRL! (In that I hated and still hate sports). There were numerous other places I connected completely with this film and even when I didn't, I had such a blast watching these three awesome girls find their way through punk and friendship.

This film is infectious with its warmth and sense of fun and I just love it with all my heart.


        And with that, I can finally and fully close the book on 2014. I don't know when we'll get a film year like that again or if I'll be able to watch so many films from one single year any time soon. It was definitely a transformative year for me as a cinephile and yeah, I loved it :)


My other Best of 2014 lists include:
Everything Else (i.e., Sexiest Characters, Favourite Characters, Ensembles, Objects and Quotes)


What were your favorite films of 2014?