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October 2014 Recap

Posted by martinteller on October 31, 2014

17 new viewings
11 rewatches

1. Death by Hanging
2. Ballad of Orin
3. Black River
4. Ballad of Narayama
5. A Touch of Sin
6. Deprisa, deprisa
7. Places in the Heart
8. One True Thing

9. Odd Obsession
10. Gone Girl
11. The Contender
12. Here’s to the Young Lady
13. Bitter Rice

14. Yearning
15. Always
16. The Hitcher

17. Freaky Friday

Quality over quantity this month.  The big thing was tackling my watchlist movies that are in Criterion’s selection on Hulu Plus.  This paid off quite nicely, especially with regard to Japanese cinema.  The other big thing was revisiting Cassavetes through the Blu-Ray box set and finding new affection for the ones I previously wasn’t that keen on.  And I have one more quickie review from yesterday: Jia Zhang-Ke’s A Touch of Sin.  Jia’s in a very cynical more here, presenting four stories (loosely connected) that explore violence.  The second tale offers little to chew on, but the other three are somber reflections on life in contemporary China and how it drives people to the brink.  Beautifully photographed as well, gorgeous use of light and color.  Fine performances all around, especially Wu Jiang (a dead ringer for older brother Wen).  Rating: Very Good (86)

November is of course Noir-vember, and I’ve got a dozen titles lined up so far… none of them especially promising, but we shall see.  It will also be a short month for me, as I’m spending Thanksgiving week in Hawaii with my fiancée and her family.

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