Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Informal Poll

I know I don't have a ton of readers, but I'd like to know something from you guys...

Would you like to see more commercial reviews or more obscure reviews? I've found that reviewing more obscure movies forces people to go out of their way to find them which can be a challenge. More commercial movies however tend to be more middle of the road and it's hard to really critique them. I had a really hard time articulating why I didn't like The Change-Up more and I think it had to do with the fact that it's a perfect example of a Hollywood mainstream movie, it's not personal, it's a movie made by committee to appeal to as large an audience as possible and so it's hard to find a ton of faults with it or to find a lot of things to like about it.

Here are some of the movies I'm thinking about doing, but I fear that nobody will have seen them, making it harder for me to get people to read the reviews...

Alejandro Jodorowsky's El Topo or The Holy Mountain
Jean-Pierre Melville's Le Samourai or Army of Shadows
Gotz Spielmann's Revanche
Victor Sjostrom's The Phantom Carriage
Lucretia Martel's The Headless Woman and The Holy Girl
Pier Paolo Passolini's Mamma Roma, Gospel According to St. Matthew or Salo
Jean Cocteau's Orpheus or La Belle et la Bete
David Gordon Green's George Washington
Brian DePalma's Phantom of the Paradise
Claire Denis' Trouble Every Day or White Material
Errol Morris' Gates of Heaven, Tabloid, or Standard Operating Procedure
Christopher Nolan's Following
Monte Hellmann's Two Lane Blacktop
Terrence Malick's Days of Heaven
Michael Powell's The Red Shoes or Life and Death of Colonel Blimp
Anything by Louis Malle (Au Revoir Les Enfants, Zazie Dans Le Metro, Elevator to the Gallows, Black Moon, Murmur of the Heart, Lucien Lacombe, My Dinner with Andre)
Nicholas Roeg's The Man Who Fell to Earth

Do any of these interest anyone? What other movies could you suggest? I would love to hear from you guys about this! Let me know!


  1. I think that planning out your week, with a mind toward balancing between "elitist" films and "poppier" movies, is a good way to go. But, why limit yourself one way or the other? Readership is important, but you are writing for YOU. This is your blog.

    (BTW, I don't know even HALF the films on your list, but, knowing you, I now have expanded my Netflix queue.)

  2. You know, I've thought about planning my week but I can't even stay on the day to day schedule I set for myself sometimes (case in point I think I pushed back Bottle Rocket twice). I'm trying to alternate as much as possible, but I'm trying not to plan too far ahead because I might not be in the mood to watch a certain movie on a certain day.

    Let me ask another question, do you guys like knowing a day ahead what movie it will be so you conceivably have a chance to see it? At least this way I could throw out four or five movies I'm going to be doing and people can make an effort to see them before the reviews are posted?

  3. Ok, I'm game. I'll be honest; I've never heard of any of the movies on this list, but I don't see that as a bad thing.
    I've never met anyone in the last 20 years that knows more about film than you, and that being said, your breadth of knowledge and exposure go well beyond most of your readers I'm sure. I think your first two weeks were a great mix of mainstream and semi-obscure and my suggestion would be to keep it up.
    When you review a movie I have already seen I am comparing your take on it to mine. Sometimes it makes me want to watch the movie again in a different frame of mind; sometimes it reinforces my original feelings about the movie. But the most important thing it does is build a reference point for the times you review a movie I have never seen (or heard of) before, and I think that's very important.
    If you were to only review very obscure movies I may not feel inclined to seek any of them out, whereas the more comfortable I become with your reviews of movies I have an opinion about, the more likely I am to broaden my reach and find these obscure movies based on your review of it (and the others for that matter).
    Reviewing a blockbuster or mediocre commercial film is grounding and centering for someone like me. It helps me keep things in perspective when I decide to view an obscure movie through a different one. If you don't review any obscure films then I kinda don't see the point. I'm looking forward to being exposed to new films through this blog, but the odds of me actually watching them lies in your reviews of movies I have already scene(;-P)

  4. I don't mind reading a review of a movie I haven't seen, even a review of a movie I won't see. Case in point, I'm not going to see Life During Wartime because I do not enjoy downers and it would just make me feel icky (and yes, that's the technical term) but I appreciate your thoughts on it because it gives me a different perspective. Through your review I got to think about the movie and what it may mean to someone, without the icky. I would like a mix of obscure and mainstream movies, though, so I don't feel like a total dumbass.
    BTW - I am still thinking about Let Sleeping Dogs Lie, another movie I will never see. The secret just grosses me out, and while it may be handled with empathy I can't help but think only a man would come up with that, for a variety of reasons.

  5. The best thing about doing this for a year is that we, your readers, can always go back and read your review after watching the movie. Or, we can read your opinion of the movie and not even bother seeing it if it doesn't interest us. I've always thought that I needed to see THX 1138 but after reading your review, it makes me think that it's not worth my time. And conversely, I'd never even heard of Let Sleeping Dogs Lie, but after reading your review, I added it to my queue.

    So keep doing what you're doing and maybe someday we'll catch up to you.

    On a side note, do you have a way of knowing what movies you have? I found a program a few years back that is awesome but they're continually updating it and charging for the bigger updates kind of like Microsoft every time they release a new Windows. You can check it out at http://www.collectorz.com/movie/ and I'd be happy to give you more information if you're interested.