Episode 783. Top Ten Films of 2021

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6 Responses

  1. FictionIsntReal says:

    I want to hear David’s (obscure) actual worst movie.

    The more Tyler rants about Jolt the more I want to check it out. I was warned about Come True by the Bloodlust podcast but I just watched that anyway. It indeed wasn’t good, but had some interesting bits.

    8 Bit Christmas is overrated in my book.

    I still think live-action is the wrong medium for Wes Anderson.

  2. Juhani Kenttä says:

    You two spoke beautifully of Pig and The Card Counter, kudos! I’m still catching up on stuff but I don’t feel too bad about my list so far.

    Honorable mentions:
    The Truffle Hunters
    Compartment No. 6
    The French Dispatch
    Licorice Pizza
    The Dinosaur
    (the last one is a quite thoughtful documentary about the legacy of Finnish film director Rauni Mollberg who is greatly admired for films such as The Earth is a Sinful Song and The Unknown Soldier but increasingly and rightfully scrutinized for his cruelty both as a director and a private person)

    10. Oasis – Knebworth 1996
    9. C’mon C’mon
    8. All Light, Everywhere
    7. Woodstock 99: Peace, Love ,and Rage
    6. Pig
    5. Supernova
    4. The Card Counter
    3. Bergman Island
    2. The Worst Person in the World
    1. Drive My Car

    • Dave says:

      Some good picks. Although I feel compelled to say that I am a listener and I love Belfast. I’m not sure what you mean by your “people”, because I logged just under 1300 first time watches on letterboxd in 2021, with a cross section that reaches from art house and indie to Blockbuster and popular level fare and I still picked Belfast as my number 3 (behind the humans and licorice pizza).

      It’s worth saying that I think one fristration that I did have with some of the reviews out there was the tendency to compare it to Roma. Not the same kind of films at all, and I think it gets misrepresented because of that. For what the film is- a family film first, with a layered commentary on place, home, social struggle, diaspora, culture and identity underneath that. I also can’t see how one could call the cinematography flat. I thought it was vibrant with the fluid mix of the constant moving camera and the still images. It really captures the Irish story and context, and the characters are operating as rich subtext for these generational ties, something I found so absorbing. Unlike Roma it is also not.trying to be emotionally distant, but rather fully present, uplifting and hopeful. Not sure why some critics equate positive with dumb..

      Also bizarre that in that discussion Deep Water was cited as a comparative of a great movie. It’s terrible, and it’s getting trashed by critics left and right.

      Sorry. I’m really passionate about that film, lol. Still love listening to you both 🙂

  3. Dave Courtney says:

    Some good picks. Although I do have to say that I’m not sure what you mean by “our people”, because I am a listener and I also love Belfast. And I also logged just under 1300 first time watches in 2021 alone. So I don’t think the “see more films” comment applies.

    I saw a very different film than you both did. Might be in part because you are comparing it to Roma. Not the same film at all, and I think comparing it undermines the film that Belfast is. I think first and foremost it is a family film, that also happens to be about family. Underneath that it is a commentary on social struggle, identity, hope, diaspora, and the different vantage points of young and old. And lastly it is love letter to Ireland. Unlike Roma which seemed intent on being emotionally distant, Belfast wants to be vibrant and hopeful, and I thought it’s eclectic mix of characters along with the mix of quick moving shots and still images worked really, really well. And the cinematography I thought was anything but flat. I found it vibrant and exciting and richly detailed.

    I’m also a bit confused about how Deep Water was cited as the compatible for an “excellent” film. It’s literally getting trashed by critics big time (I didn’t like it either).

    Still enjoy listening none the less though, and I really enjoyed many of the films in your top 10.

    • Battleship Pretension says:

      Thanks for the very interesting thoughts! I’m probably being over influenced by my Twitter feed. I was indeed shocked to see Deep Water’s Rotten Tomatoes score when I’ve only seen positive reactions on Twitter.

      – David

  4. BradleyD says:

    I’m right there with David on Belfast. I thought it was cloying and indulgent and what charms it had were shallow. I especially don’t understand the nominations for directing and screenplay. The film’s visual sense is often jarring and I found myself thinking, “I don’t know a ton about editing but this feels like bad editing.” The writing is often on the nose and clumsy and the “jokes” landed completely flat for me and those I watched it with. And the kid, sorry, while cute and all, I kinda hated him by the end. I’ve nothing against sentimental, personal films but they have to be done well (Sing Street is a similar film in some ways and much better). Belfast just isn’t very good filmmaking.

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