So this month I watched far less than in previous months because. . .I watched four whole seasons of The X-Files! It has been years since I rewatched that show (I watched from the day it aired during its original run on TV!) and I feel real hard into a re-watch, which sort of distracted me from my new-to-me goals. That said, I am about forty films shy of 8,000 films watched! I’ll have to make sure #8000 is something really special.
Here’s a look at everything else I did this month! On my podcast Prog Save America I spoke with WilliamScurry about prog rock album art, Rich Bunnell about ELO, and Robert Daniels about Bob Dylan’s “Nashville Skyline”. Over on the Classic Film Collective I contributed a monthly movie rec, wrote a poem about Marilyn Monroe, and joined Jill Blake on the Watch With Jen podcast to talk about Girlfriends. Over at Nerdist I celebrated the 20th (!!!) anniversary of Moulin Rouge! with a look back at the drama of an Ewan McGregor Yahoo! group of which I used to be an active member, for Pride Month I explored the queerness of Venom and looked at 23 of the earliest queer films from the silent and pre-code eras. For my Moviefone column I interviewed Tove director Zaida Bergroth, Skater Girl filmmakers Manjari & Vinati Makijany, Good On Paper director Kimmy Gatewood, I Carry You With Me director Heidi Ewing, and took a look at documentaries about Rita Moreno and Jane Fonda.
As always, after the cut you can find everything I watched in June + some of my favorites from the month.
When this movie first came out I was dying to see it, but sadly my hometown theater didn’t get it and I had to wait for it to be a rental. I rented a shitty full frame VHS from my local rental store and I fell in love with it. Luckily, a week or so later we went out-of-town and I bought the special edition DVD and I watched it right away in all its widescreen glory. Let me tell you, I already felt pretty strongly about aspect ratios, but that little experience cinched it for me. The full frame ruined soooo much of Luhrmann’s amazing framing and ruined some of the film’s reoccurring themes. I finally got to see the film on the big screen when I was in college and boy what an experience that was! I also got to see it at the Castro Theatre last summer and boy who giant screen really brings out the power of the imagery and emotions of the film. After I saw this film the first time, I went back to my local rental store and rented absolutely every film starring either Nicole Kidman or Ewan McGregor that they had (which was actually quite a lot of films). That was a lot of fun. Moulin Rouge! was nominated for eight Oscars, winning two: Academy Award Best Art Direction (won), Best Costume Design, Best Makeup, Best Sound, Best Cinematography, Best Film Editing, Best Actress Nicole Kidman and Best Picture. Luhrmann didn’t receive a nomination for Best Director and Oscar host Whoppi Goldberg famously quipped when presenting the film that “apparently it didn’t have a director.” This was a year where two of the Best Picture films didn’t get Best Director nods (the other was Todd Field for In The Bedroom) and two directors whose films weren’t nom’d did: David Lynch for Mulholland Drive and Ridley Scott for Black Hawk Down. Always strange when that happens, though I am 100% behind Lynch’s nomination.
I’ve been a fan of Baz Luhrmann since I saw his version of Romeo + Juliet when it was first released in theaters. It was unlike anything I’d ever seen before. He wowed me again five years later with Moulin Rouge! a film that is so dear to my heart. Luhrmann is a showman in every sense of the word and his films are some of the showiest films to come out in the last twenty years.
I had this thought that perhaps The Hangover should win Best Picture at the Oscars this year.
Inspired by this post @ awardsdaily I’ve gone through the Best Actress nominees from 1989-2009 and picked by favorite nominated performances. Only two of my ten favorite performances went on to win the Oscar. Granted, I haven’t seen every Best Actress winner, let alone nominee, from the last 20 years, I’ve seen a lot of them. If you’re interested buying any of the films discussed below, click here.
My list after the cut.