Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Films re-watched 2014

Each year is a year of film discoveries; some new, some old. But too each year there are films I re-watch because I enjoy them or because I want to see them again.
Here are some of the films I saw again in 2014.

Downhill Racer - I grew up in Colorado and I love skiing so it fits the bill every time. This is really one of the best sports movies ever made because it cuts through the rah-rah-rah.

The Ruling Class - As wicked and clever as ever. Peter O'Toole is terrific.

Casablanca - I'd forgotten how good this film was. Curtiz is often underrated.

Flirt - A forgotten Hal Hartley, which is saying something. Still, a good film.

Nostalgia -  I hadn't seen this Andrei Tarkovsky film in years; and always on the big screen. The images on the small screen are still powerful and the ending just as harrowing and mysterious.

Badlands - Leaning towards Malick's best because each scene doesn't stay vacant for long.

The Train - Burt Lancaster commandeering a Nazi train full of art. What's not to love?

Hiroshima mon amour - One remembers the beauty of the images rather than the tragedy, which makes it all the more powerful when you see it again.

Nelly and Monsieur Arnaud - Claude Sautet's last film and still a solid, effective love story.

Peking Opera Blues - I watch this Hong Kong classic every few years. It's ridiculous but fun. Or is that ridiculous AND fun?

Pursued - When they made psychological westerns.

Miller's Crossing - Man, I forgot how good this was. I liked it better this time around.

Pascali's Island - No one remembers this film but it's got fine performances by Ben Kingsley and Helen Mirren

The Long Day Closes - Terence Davies' beautiful, personal and nostalgic film is one for the ages.

Life and Nothing But - Bertrand Tavernier's film about World War I and the effect on two people; one an officer and one the wife of a lost soldier - is a film I watch every few years.

Red River - Is this the best Western ever made? Maybe. Still entertaining.

Ali: Fear Eats the Soul - Has any director ever continually cut as deep and as sharp as Fassbinder did film after film? This film is still so darn good.

Excalibur - I put this in to test my Blu-ray player and decided there was nothing better to watch at that moment. Fun film.

The Yakuza - Robert Mitchum doing his thing; only as an older man in the 1970's. Better than I remembered it. 

3 Women - Robert Altman's Persona made at the height of his artistic powers - when zooming was all the rage and people still ate patty melts.