Movies Watched, Jan. 2021

from Ozu’s “Good Morning”

Can’t believe that January is already over. Trying to do this thing again at a more regular manner, since I lost track last year. I enter a month usually with a long list of movies to watch, with the primary intention of watching things that have been on my list forever instead of “autoplaying” whatever Netflix serves me when I am in the mood for something.

Trying to watch everything by Ozu and Kore-eda by the end of the year.

(1975) The Mirror

  • Beautiful cinematography, and the more I think about it the more that many films I love refer to this film in one way or another. Unfortunately, I personally find that the tone can be a little overwrought. (3.5/5)

(1959) Good Morning

  • Funny, melancholic, says a lot about the politics of everyday domestic life in Japan at that time. Surprising amount of fart jokes. (4.5/5)

(2021) Minari

  • Great. Captures the tensions of assimilation, class and intergenerational identities around the myth of the American dream in such an understated way. (4.5 / 5)

(1991) Pushing Hands

  • Had wanted to see this for a long time. Lovely film. The “Father” trilogy from Ang Lee is lovely, albeit my bias as all three films feel very reflective of my personal experience. (4/5)

(2020) Tenet

  • It was fine. (3/5)

(2020) Wonder Woman 1984

  • Better than the first one. Kristen Wiig feels under utilized (would definitely watch her in another superhero movie.) The last 10 – 15 minutes of the movie just felt really bad and anti-climactic. (3/5)

(2019) Gundala

  • Entertaining. Really missed that unique Indonesian brand of humor, and really appreciate Joko Anwar’s ability to create his dark aesthetic translate to a superhero movie here. The fact that most of the film is not reliant on CGI, but instead on amazing Silat performances makes the film worth watching. Not sure how I feel about the overall story, and curious to see how the political subtext play out across the Bumi Langit universe. Abimana Aryasatya is so handsome, geez. (4/5)

( 2002) Lord of the Rings: Return of the King

  • This installment of the trilogy really shows Peter Jackson’s horror roots. Forgot how creepy and eerie this was. Still feels weird to see a film that is mostly white though, this part of it definitely feels very dated. (4/5)

(2003) Lord of the Rings: Two Towers

  • So good, holds up. (4/5)

(1938) Bringing Up Baby

  • Second time watching this, still very charming – if not disorienting in its second half. Won’t lie, my brain struggled to keep up with the fast talking. (3.5/5)