A post of mine popped up a few times that it was being read, but I couldn’t remember what it was about. It happened to be the the “Favorite Films for Every Year I’ve Been Alive” list. I noticed it got rather squirrelly towards the end. For one, I tend to watch older movies. For another, I like having processing time and am usually years–if not decades–behind whatever the current trends are.
Thought I’d update the list:
In 2019, I’ve only seen about five new movies. My favorites have been Us and Horror Noire: A History of Black Horror.
When I first extended the list to 2018, I chose the short film “Whispering Pines 10” and Roma as my favorites. Roma was beautifully filmed and so many of the images have stayed with me even after only one viewing.
“Whispering Pines 10” is by Shana Moulton, one of my favorite filmmakers. I’ve watched and rewatched everything I can by her. In The Whispering Pines series, Moulton plays Cynthia, a woman searching for balance through various types of New Age and holistic body/mind/spirit healing systems, with often wonderfully surreal results. Moulton grew up in an area geographically similar to Twin Peaks, which she’s mentioned as an influence. I found it interesting that when I watched The Return how Lynch’s use of digital animation actually reminded me of Moulton’s films.
Below are some of my other favorites from 2018:
Andre the Giant
It’s Andre the Giant. That should be enough right there. Samuel Beckett used to drive him to school. Now that’s the buddy film I want to see.
The Ballad of Buster Scruggs
The Coen Brothers doing a kind of EC Comics Western/musical. My favorite segments were “The Gal Who Got Rattled” and “Meal Ticket.”
Hotel Trannsylvania 3: Summer Vacation
I watched this with the kids and had a blast. I was happy to watch something with monsters, especially classic monsters, with them because they are not into anything scary yet. The youngest is starting to get interested in Disney villains and their Descendants, but she’s also the most squeamish.
Milford Graves: Full Mantis
Graves is an absolute master percussionist and shaman for the 21st Century. Despite all my complaints about streaming services, they are likely the only reason I’m able to see this and it’s worth every second.
I wrote a little about this one here.
Nothing like Breen on the big screen. The only thing better than hearing “Where’s the laptop, Breen?” from the audience was overhearing the few people in attendance who had never seen a Neil Breen joint. Shock and awe.
The Zen Diaries of Garry Shandling
Shandling was a visionary and always seemed to be pushing himself to be not only a better comedian and writer, but also a better person. He seemed deeply aware of his flaws in ways that we all can learn from. I remember seeing The Garry Shandling Show and loving the theme, and then thinking about how the show felt like a weird mix of Mr. Rogers and David Letterman. The Larry Sanders Show is just about perfect. I had no idea of his interest in Buddhism.