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I have been watching a few of the 2020 films lately and I haven't really liked any of them so far.  We should brace ourselves for 2021 which is probably going to be even worse.

These three were okay ...

The Trial of the Chicago 7

Nomadland

Borat Subsequent Moviefilm

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faves in no special order

 

maltese falcon

anthony adverse

my man godfrey

shop around the corner

ugetsu

twenty four eyes

seven samurai

a thousand clowns

pygmalion

thief of bagdad

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  • 4 weeks later...

Only seen 7 2020 films so far...

Ma Rainey's Black Bottom was very good. (9/10)

Emma was charming (8.5/10)

The Trial of the Chicago 7 has a firm, nicely handled script plus some flair (8/10)

Onward was lesser Pixar, but had its moments (7.5/10)

Let Them All Talk was a bit too wordy for its own good (6/10)

Pieces of a Woman preened itself too much of its own importance and was empty other that Ellen Burstyn's too-brief supporting part (5.5/10)

Mank was a major letdown (4/10)

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14 hours ago, CinemaInternational said:

Only seen 7 2020 films so far...

Ma Rainey's Black Bottom was very good. (9/10)

Emma was charming (8.5/10)

The Trial of the Chicago 7 has a firm, nicely handled script plus some flair (8/10)

Onward was lesser Pixar, but had its moments (7.5/10)

Let Them All Talk was a bit too wordy for its own good (6/10)

Pieces of a Woman preened itself too much of its own importance and was empty other that Ellen Burstyn's too-brief supporting part (5.5/10)

Mank was a major letdown (4/10)

Why was MANK such a letdown for you?

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1 hour ago, TopBilled said:

Why was MANK such a letdown for you?

For me - In the end it just wasn't that interesting to merit its length.  And that's from a film lover.

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10 minutes ago, Bogie56 said:

For me - In the end it just wasn't that interesting to merit its length.  And that's from a film lover.

Films like TRUMBO and MANK, while important, don't seem very exciting to me. I'm not saying everything has to be a superhero movie, but stories about old Hollywood insiders have limited appeal for audiences, I think. These stories matter more to scholars and to the families of those people, not the typical viewer. Also, these topics tend to be covered better in documentaries.

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21 minutes ago, TopBilled said:

Films like TRUMBO and MANK, while important, don't seem very exciting to me. I'm not saying everything has to be a superhero movie, but stories about old Hollywood insiders have limited appeal for audiences, I think. These stories matter more to scholars and to the families of those people, not the typical viewer. Also, these topics tend to be covered better in documentaries.

I agree.  Though Trumbo had the benefit of a very large back story which was the McCarthy era which made it a bit more fascinating.

They tried to do that by injecting a political angle into Mank but it was not as successful.

And maybe watching Trumbo writing in a bathtub was more amusing than watching Mank writing while he was drying out on a motel bed.

You can't fault the acting in either movie though.  Englishman, Tom Burke did a fantastic job as Orson Welles.  The voice was spot on.  At the end I wondered if a different actor had done the voice.  I'll have to see it again at some point and look closer.

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8 hours ago, TopBilled said:

Why was MANK such a letdown for you?

I'm sharing my review.

Quote

 

An astonishing letdown in almost every respect, Mank is an overstuffed biopic that is all surface, no substance, and not even the surface is that good. It is another in the long line of Hollywood as a cesspool films that go back through the days of The Day of the Locust, Inside Daisy Clover, The Bad and the Beautiful, and the ultimate, Sunset Boulevard.  It differs from the others in using real-life figures, instead of creating fictional characters. 

The film centers on Herman Mankiewicz, the writer of Citizen Kane, and supposes that he was driven to write the thinly disguised look at William Randolph Hearst by his lingering frustration at being associated with Hearst and Louis B Mayer's successful attempt to take down the political aspirations of Upton Sinclair. (In real life, Mankiewicz wasn't even involved with the whole situation). 

The problem is that the film gums almost everything up. The story is cluttered and unfocused. The black and white photography lacks the silkiness of the silvery film of the time; its modern-looking, harsh, badly-lit, muddled, and unpleasant. The music never sounds period appropriate. Aside from Arliss Howard (hilariously on point as the preening, overly theatrical Mayer) and Amanda Seyfried (who captures Marion Davies' personality, if not quite her voice [she sounds more like Jean Harlow or Lesley Ann Warren in Victor/Victoria]), the cast is boring and lifeless. Gary Oldman is a blank in the central role. The film feels it is making a giant statement (about the toxic relationship between politics and powerful individuals), but it has all been said many times before, and, as for its depiction of the era, the more you know about the classic Hollywood era, the more disjointed and maddening it is. Instead of a tribute to the distinguished writer of a masterpiece, this is an insult. This is one of the biggest disappointments I have had in a very long time.

 

 

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mank

Mank and the Ghost of Christmas Future

Film historian Joseph McBride, who penned “Rough Sledding with Pauline Kael” in 1971, graciously offered to revisit the authorship of Citizen Kane for Wellesnet after screening David Fincher’s new Netflix movie Mank — the latest in a string of unflattering film portrayals of Orson Welles.

November 28, 2020
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  • 1 month later...

2020

I have now seen all the film nominated for the Oscar and BAFTA Best Picture Award.  Sound of Metal is regarded as a 2019 release by the imdb.  Judas and the Black Messiah is regarded as a 2021 release.  Lots of the 2020 films in competition for these theatrical film awards are from Netflix and Amazon.  Normal theatrical release criteria has been loosened due to the pandemic.  I'm doing the same.  Even so, the films were hardly great.

My top films of 2020 (64 seen):

1.  The Trial of the Chicago 7

2.  The Father

3.  David Attenborough: A Life On Our Planet

4.  Greyhound

5.  Promising Young Woman

6.  The Dissident

7.  Uppity: The Willy T. Ribbs Story

8.  The Courier

9.  On the Record

10.  Nomadland

Runner Ups:  Onward

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  • 2 months later...

Top 10 Favorite Films of 2020       (121 titles seen)

  1. The Father
  2. Promising Young Woman
  3. Palm Springs
  4. The Trial of the Chicago 7
  5. Minari
  6. Nomadland
  7. Soul
  8. One Night in Miami...
  9. Ma Rainey's Black Bottom
  10. Never Rarely Sometimes Always

Honorable Mentions: The Old GuardAnother RoundHostLittle FishHis House

Top 10 Favorite Documentaries

  1. My Octopus Teacher
  2. The Bee Gees: How Can You Mend a Broken Heart
  3. Zappa
  4. David Byrne's American Utopia
  5. Crip Camp
  6. Showbiz Kids
  7. Have a Good Trip
  8. Dick Johnson Is Dead
  9. Skin: A History of Nudity in the Movies
  10. The Last Blockbuster

10 Worst Films of 2020

  1. Derek DelGaudio's In & of Itself
  2. Like a Boss
  3. We Can Be Heroes
  4. The Last Days of American Crime
  5. Coffee & Kareem
  6. Bad Boys for Life
  7. The Babysitter: Killer Queen
  8. Hubie Halloween
  9. The Tax Collector
  10. Songbird

 

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