Friday, January 16, 2015
When I started this blog, I had written up an entry titled "Top Twenty Favorite Films". Because arbitrary lists like that are fun. Considering that it's been five years since I had started this blog, I thought it might be fun to revise it since times change, so do opinions, movies stand or fall to the test of time. Yadda yadda yadda.
After hours of thinking, considering, and weighing my options and the movies I have seen since, old or new, I abandoned the idea of revising the list because only one movie fell out of my Top Twenty. Only one.
And the film that I rejected was.... *drumroll*
The Dark Knight - I will admit it, I bought into the Nolan hype hook, line and sinker. Don't get me wrong, I still believe this is a pretty good movie. Heath Ledger and Aaron Ekhart turn in fantastic performances. But the more I look back on this movie, the more it begins to fall apart. Very few of the characters have actual conversations with each other that aren't exposition, or these gigantic philosophical diatribes. It's a film that looks and sounds a lot deeper than it actually is. Not to say I don't like it, because I do. But it's not standing the test of time. It's a good comic book movie, but we have since gotten better comic book movies. It's a good crime drama, but it is by no means one of the best crime dramas.
And no, it's not #21. It's probably in the lower half of my Top Fifty at this point. Sorry, Batman...
As for what's replacing it...
Amadeus - Yes, I had seen "Amadeus" before 2010, and I liked it, but it had been so long I didn't quite appreciate it at the time. I bought the Blu-ray a few years back and have watched it a few times since then and this movie is just spellbinding. This is a movie that, without fail, captivates me every single time I watch it. My eyes never leave the screen, it is sublime. I think the character of Salieri is one of the most fascinating in the history of film. For me, his struggle with dealing with his utter contempt of Mozart the man, juxtaposed with his adoration of Mozart the artist, was simply brilliant. Salieri shows us what can happen if we become obsessed with trying to be better than people with true genius, instead of just trying to be better than ourselves - improving what we do, without focusing on others. He is "us" and also a cautionary tale.