December is a month for Christmas films. I absolutely adore Christmas films – they seem to be one of the few exceptions to my general dislike of cheesy and sentimental films. As in every December, I watched a good number of festive flicks. I also saw a couple of most excellent films at the cinema and played 2014 catch-up, watching a bunch of films I missed at the cinema on DVD or VOD. The round-up of the 29 films I saw in December and my totals for 2014 are after the jump.
Screenings: refers to anything I have seen at the cinema/on the big screen.
New at home: encompasses new-to-me, first-time viewings on DVD/Blu-ray/VOD/Screeners
Rewatches: are [obviously] things I’ve seen before , which I’m viewing again at home
Best viewing: my favourite viewing in each of the categories listed above
Apart from the ‘Best Viewing’, films are listed in the order they were viewed in.
Best viewing: Infinitely Polar bear
The Imitation Game
Do the Right Thing
The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies
It’s a Wonderful Life
New at Home
Best viewing: The One I Love
The Internet’s Own Boy: The Story of Aaron Swartz
Blue is the Warmest Colour
Nick Offerman: American Ham
A Girl Walks Home Alone At Night
We Are The Best!
Best viewing: Home Alone (twice)
National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation
Home Alone 2: Lost in New York
The Santa Clause
The Santa Clause 2
Singin’ in the Rain
Mission Impossible 4: Ghost Protocol
While it wasn’t my favourite film at the cinema in December, Paddington is the one I was most surprised by (in a very good way). I didn’t think much of the trailer and thought the bear looked kind of creepy, but how very wrong I was. Paddington was an absolute delight, absolutely wonderful – it made me so happy and I couldn’t stop grinning for hours afterwards. It was such a fun film with excellent characters, a great story and so many laughs. The cinematography was fantastic (this film looks so good) and I wasn’t surprised to learn that the director of photography was one of my favourite cinematographers, Erik Wilson (The Imposter, The Double, 20,000 Days on Earth). Talking about cinematography and good-looking films, Birdman again proves what an absolute genius Emmanuel Lubezki is. Holy crap, that was one good-looking film. While I think it is technically impeccable, the story didn’t resonate with me so much. I’ve seen three other films in 2014 that dealt with the same/similar theme, better (Clouds of Sils Maria, The Humbling, Venus in Fur).
I watched some great stuff at home during December. The One I Love was a fantastic surprise. A real oddball comedy with a fun idea that was executed well. I love Elizabeth Moss and Mark Duplass, so it was fun to watch them in something together. I loved the music in A Girl Walks Home Alone At Night and (to a lesser extent) We Are The Best! Charlie’s Country was so beautiful – I was so moved and so frustrated when I watched it. I fear that it is pretty close to the truth….
The last film I watched in 2014 was a rewatch of Begin Again and I adored it. It really is a sweet film with a hilarious performance from Mark Ruffalo. I don’t think enough people saw this at the cinema, so consider this a recommendation to watch at home.
Coming up in January? I’ve seen most of the major releases, so I expect it will be light on cinema viewing. I’m really looking forward to seeing both Selma and American Sniper and I will try to see The Theory of Everything (I think it comes out in January). As for 2015 movie goals – I’ve made a list of classics I want to try to catch up with, but there’s nothing I am particularly aiming to watch or write about. Let’s just see how it pans out.
I want to take this chance to thank each and every person who has taken the time to stop by this little site of mine. It really means a lot that you would take even 10 seconds to read something I have written. I know I haven’t posted as much in 2014, but I will try my best to get a little more on the site in 2015. In exciting site news, my very talented partner Andrew Buckle has come onboard as a full member of the team (as of now), so we all have more of his fantastic writing to look forward to in 2015. Happy New Year to you all. I wish you a happy, healthy and prosperous 2015.
New at Home: 100