First: I apologise for how disarrayed the review schedule has gotten over here. Beyond the fact that the United States of America is disintegrating right before our eyes, I’ve had some personal life problems that have made it difficult to keep up with reviewing things (and that is, mind you, above and beyond the fact that I have reached the “writing the dissertation” stage of grad school, which is ostensibly the first place I should be sinking my writing energy). So rather than try to dig myself out of the hole I’m in, I’m just going to dive right into new stuff and hope that I can catch up with the ongoing stuff more or less in a timely fashion.
Second: we are at some point going to have to look reality square in the face and admit that movie theaters aren’t going to reopen in the United States in 2020. For some of you, that’s not a problem, because you don’t live in the United States. For some of you, that’s not a problem, because you’re fine with streaming. Me, I hate streaming – it makes the movies feel fake and not at all worth watching, and there has not been one film in the history of the medium that I’d prefer to watch on even a very big and well-calibrated television than to watch it in even a crummy theater. But streaming it will be. So the rather conspicuous lack of new release reviews at this site will be reversing itself, at least somewhat. More on that below.
Third: there are polls at the bottom of this post! Who doesn’t love polls? So even if you skip over the rest, be sure to check those out!
Anyway, I would be content to silently transform this into a site dedicated entirely into deep dives into the careers of major art cinema directors, but I know that not everybody loves that kind of stuff as much as I do. So the first new addition to the schedule will be a shallow dive into the career of a beloved cult horror director: the late Stuart Gordon, who would have turned 73 on 11 August, had he not passed away last march. As a native of Chicago and an alumnus of UW-Madison, Gordon is basically my hero, and I am pleased to use the opportunity of his birth month to dig into his career for a little bit. I’m starting tomorrow, but after that, Tuesdays in August are going to be dedicated to giving a little summary of his breadth as a filmmaker, starting with his two magnificent early adaptations of the work of H.P. Lovecraft, and moving to a pair of films from later in his career that found him trying in very different ways to establish himself outside of the horror genre.
The schedule (hidden in deference to those who prefer surprises):
11 August: From Beyond (1986)
18 August: The Wonderful Ice Cream Suit (1998)
25 August: King of the Ants (2003)
In the Before Times, this month was going to bear witness to the release of Bill & Ted Face the Music, the third film in the long-dormant series that produced on most excellent film that I have reviewed, and one bodacious sequel that I have not, and as a way of patching up that hole and celebrating just how non-bogus Bill & Ted’s Bogus Journey is, I decided to make up a whole little series of sequels that I like as much if not more than the original. And since Face the Music has only moved to a VOD release (*hiss*spit*) on 1 September, that hole still needs patching.
13 August: Gremlins 2: The New Batch (1990)
20 August: Bill & Ted’s Bogus Journey (2003)
27 August: The Godfather, Part II (1974)
The Best Picture marathon continues, tattered but undaunted, for one last month
14 August: Gladiator (2000)
21 August: The Godfather (1972)
28 August: The Broadway Melody (1929)
The Australian Winter of Blood plays catch-up, and concludes.
9 August: Lake Mungo (2008)
15 August: The Loved Ones (2009)
22 August: Patrick (2013)
29 August: Wolf Creek 2 (2013)
Sundays, Mondays, Wednesdays, and randomly elsewhere
Well, obviously I’m still chipping away at Ingmar Bergman, but now we’re actually to the famous masterpieces, so it’s going to be a lot more fun for me to write and hopefully more fun for you to read. Beyond that, as mentioned, it’s time for me to give up pretending that if I close my eyes and hum, streaming will go away. So I’m going to consult my list of (counts) Jesus, 102 films that have come out so far in 2020 that I have noted as being possibly interesting and worth seeing. And then I’m going to ask for your help in prioritising some of these movies, in a variety of categories – no promises on when I’ll actually get to any of them, but at least it will help me to make sure I’m at least writing about the things you want to read about.
(For all polls, you can vote again every 12 hours, and since I’ll be leaving them open and removing things/adding things for potentially months, you should feel free to do just that)
I know it’s annoying that these are links to another website, but I promise it’s less annoying than having four giant polls all in the same blog post.