A Film a Day: Reflections on March

HUGO

Alright, I’m behind. Currently, on April 13th 2015, it is Day 103 and I have currently ‘clocked’ 96 films this year. I can blame Weddings or Poland, but the fact remains that I am now behind. I could watch some Charlie Chaplin and Buster Keaton shorts to make up the numbers, but it is surely too early in the year for that. I also have time in the week ahead (no holidays, weddings or visits to interrupt) to catch up. Daredevil, Game of Thrones and Mad Men ultimately hold me back still, but planned carefully, I can sneak an episode in here and there and ensure I get back on track. In any case, it’s not over until it is over and 7 is such a teeny number! *wiping brow* It’ll be fi-i-i-i-i-ne. April has begun well too – with daily films since the 5th, so things are looking up!

MICHELLE RODRIGUEZ and VIN DIESEL are Letty and Dom Torreto in Fast & Furious.

Indecision

The biggest fatal flaw of Netflix, Amazon Prime, et al, is the endless scrolling. When you have a large collection of films too, flicking through the sleeves holds the same challenges. On a bad day, it erodes time and potentially cancels the viewing altogether. You know the feeling, spend thirty minutes making a choice and suddenly it’s too late and a “really good” programme – like the News – takes over. The release of Fast and Furious 7 has meant less indecision, as any opportunity to watch every instalment in the lead-up is taken. March 31st, therefore, had an early afternoon of Fast and Furious, followed by a late-night viewing of Fast Five. Happy Days.

downloaded

Always time for a quick Doc’

After noting how documentaries can be the key to squeezing in a quick-film when you haven’t got much time, this continued through March. I finally viewed Alex Winter’s revealing Downloaded film, exploring the history – and consequence – of Napster. Sarah Polley’s Stories We Tell, after sitting uncomfortably too long on the Netflix ‘list’, was watched also. Interesting how both documentarians are actors also. Maybe I need to watch Keanu-Reeves-produced Side by Side next? Or rewatch Alec-Baldwin-produced Seduced and Abandoned? We shall see if they become available in April…

blue6.4.doc

Morning Routines

Though it is classed as an April film, this morning I viewed Blue is the Warmest Colour. It has been on my ‘list’ for a long time but, due to its three-hour length (widely noted in its Cannes coverage after winning the Palme D’Or 2013), I’ve always been hesitant. But, waking bright and early this morning, I experienced it over breakfast. The expectation that I’d break halfway-though failed to materialise, and soon enough, it was 9.30am and could mark off the epic-length teenage-romance (“epic” and “teenage-romance” is quite a rare combination). It is outstanding and requires every minute, of the 159, on screen. The early rise may be my way of watching the longer, denser, challenging films I intend to see, and this proved to be a solid use of time.

The late appearance of this post only serves as another example of the toll the film-a-day task is taking. Bear in mind that, outside of film-watching, I need to write, work and be more than a static sofa-robot to the family. The point is, nothing stops. I shouldn’t need to cancel my life to reach this goal. The challenge isn’t watching a film a day – but watching a film a day and maintaining a balanced, healthy lifestyle. It is more about focus and planning, rather than a bullish regime, at the cost of everyone and everything around me. Did I say I’m getting wider too? Somehow, I have to push some running stretches in between everything else to – and then return to eat carrots in front of the TV as I line up the next movie…

Read my reflections on January and February and track my entire journey on Letterboxd

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