Christmas Catch Up--East Coast Edition!

Brian has safely landed in Mississippi for the holidays! While he gets settled and before I head out to see "Mandela--Long Walk to Freedom," I’ll bring you up to date with where I stand coming down to the end of the year. With Brian now on the West Coast, this is the first year that we are separated during the whirlwind of heavy hitters being released into the theaters (I've been at screenings every night this week!). So, here’s a  Christmas Catch Up—East Coast Edition!

Below is my list of films yet to see—15 in all. The ones that have an asterisk next to them are one that I’m either scheduled for a screening this week or have screeners for. I wasn't able to get into screenings for either “Her” or “The Wolf of Wall Street,” so those I’ll be seeing in the theater (along with “Labor Day”) and I’m hoping to see “Frozen” over the holidays next week. Of the rest, “Blue is the Warmest Color” has been in my Netflix Q for a while, but is STILL marked Very Long Wait (come on and watch that three hour lesbian foreign film or put it back in the mail, people!!). “Prisoners” and “Short Term 12” won’t be released on Netflix until mid-January, so those two will just have to wait. But it should be very possible for me to get to the others by the end of the year (at which point, I have a whole second list of films to see that don’t seem like they’d make it into my Top 10—though I have been wrong before).

My Top 10 list is already shaping up to represent what was an excellent year for film and with many top contenders to go, it’s possible that a good half of them could wind up falling off!

I've never put together a Top 10 Best Scenes, as Brian does, and I doubt that I will this year, either. So, before I close, I want to offer up the opening scene of “The Grandmaster” (Hong Kong’s entry into the Foreign Film category this year) as it would surely be near the top of the list. Beautifully shot with stunning fight choreography, the element of water makes it almost sensual. Much of the movie was as gorgeously filmed, but sadly it gradually loses focus in its storytelling as it goes. I know that it’s been reedited for domestic release and now has a shorter running time than it originally had, which may be the cause. Still, it has strong performances and several excellent fight sequences, making it well worth seeing. Check out a portion of the scene below.

Happy holidays to all! I’ll keep you up to date on my progress and have several pieces in the works on my favorites.

Rick’s Movies to Watch:
*20 Feet From Stardom
All is Lost
*American Hustle
Blue is the Warmest Color
*The Butler
*Enough Said
Labor Day
*Mandela: The Long Walk to Freedom
Short Term 12
The Wolf of Wall Street


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