I don’t think it an untrue statement to say that 2019 hasn’t been my best year for movie watching. Not from the perspective of the quality of the films but more so the frequency that I actually watched anything.
For the first half of the year there was almost nothing. Yeap – you read that right. Nothing. I couldn’t tell you definitively why that was. General disinterest in what was on offer. Not a huge amount of time. And it wasn’t a case of inconvenience. I subscribed to Netflix so there were literally hundreds of movie at the opening of an app but, well, there was nothing that I could match to my mood.
Spoiler: I no longer have Netflix and I can’t say that I miss it to be honest.
But things started to look up in the back half of the year. At one stage I made a pledge to watch a new movie every week but that proved difficult and made it feel like a chore which is not what I was wanting to achieve. So I decided to scale my goal back to something more manageable which was making it to the cinema every 2 to 3 weeks or as movies were released that I wanted to see.
And I am somewhat picky as to what I will pay theatre prices for. No graphic or gratuitous sex and violence and no serial killer movies because they almost always involve the degradation of women. I make no apologies for writing those off with hardly a glance. I also stay away from horror. I just can’t stomach all that death. It’s not a case of a squeamish stomach. I just don’t want to see that during my leisure time. What else? Movies drenched in sadness, unhappiness and ones that are likely to leave me feeling depressed as I exit the theatre I also tend to give a miss. I sort of feel bad – they might be excellent filmmaking but again, if I wanted those kinds of experiences I would watch the news.
So what did make the grade in 2019? Hold onto your hats cause here come the stats!
Out of a total of 18 viewings I saw:
- Three Identical Strangers (documentary)
- Boss Baby
- Paddington 1 and 2
- Captain Marvel
- The Farewell
- What Happened, Miss Simone? (documentary)
- All In My Family (short documentary)
- Twinsters (documentary)
- Behind The Curve (documentary)
- The Nice Guys
- Last Christmas
- Knives Out
- Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker
- Jumanji: The Next Level
This breaks down as:
- 5 documentaries
- 13 features
And the feature genres were:
- Animated: 1
- Family: 3
- Action: 1
- Musical: 1
- Biopic: 1
- Drama: 1
- Thriller: 1
- Murder/Mystery: 1
- Rom Com: 1
- Fantasy/ Sci Fi: 1
I think that’s a good spread and a lot of variety considering all the material that is discounted.
NOTE: There will be a small number of reviews for 2019 that will appear in 2020.
And I actually rated what I saw. So how hard or generous was I?
- 1 star: Star Wars – The Rise of Skywalker
- 2 stars: Hairspray
- 3 stars: Captain Marvel; Twinsters; Behind The Curve; Contagion; Judy; Knives Out
- 4 stars: Three Identical Strangers; Paddington 1; All In My Family; The Nice Guys; Last Christmas; Jumanji: The Next Level
- 5 stars: Paddington 2; The Farewell; What Happened, Miss Simon
I think my ratings are fair based on my emotional and gut reaction to what I saw. That’s how I tend to judge movies – how involved on an emotional and intellectual level did I get. And this is a very subjective measure because everyone’s reactions are different. So if you don’t agree with my view then that’s ok. Oh and the other defining factor … did I have fun. If I didn’t, then the movie was failing on some level.
So to cap off this look back at 2019 I will leave you with the results of the inaugural Sarah’s Ramblings Film Awards! I hope you’ve got your acceptance speech written …
- Film that induced water to fall from my eyes at an alarming rate: Paddington 2 (I sobbed)
- Film that most frustrated me: Hairspray
- Film that lived up to the reviews: The Farewell
- Film that has me shaking my head in disbelief at almost every frame: Behind The Curve
- Film that felt like a welcome return to form: The Nice Guys
- Most fascinating watch: What happened, Miss Simone?
- Film that broke my heart: Last Christmas
- Film that made me feel like yelling ‘this is bullshit’ in the theatre: Star Wars – The Rise of Skywalker
So onto 2020 which hopefully serve up some good movie fare. I wouldn’t mind adding in some older, vintage films in the coming 12 months … I do have a couple in mind so I will try to see if I can locate copies.
Best of luck to everyone for the coming movie year!
(Header Image: Skitterphoto)