Well, another month of 2016 is gone (eep!) and that means it’s time for another roundup!
Bits and bobs or things that made me happy:
-This video of Saiorse Ronan showing Americans how to make a proper cup of tea is delightful. “Just to make it extra Irish, I have my own potato.”
-Amy Adams has been cast as the lead in the television adaptation of Sharp Objects – while I know that’s not cinema related, Adams is one of my favourite actresses because of her film performances so I decided to include it. I am incredibly excited by this news. Sharp Objects is a great book and I think Adams will do the role of Camille justice.
-Final images of the Mattel dolls for Batman v Superman were released, and I was pretty impressed with them. I had already seen Wonder Woman last year but the Batman and Superman dolls weren’t revealed until last month. (The dolls are all now available to buy). Batman looks a bit off but Superman looks very good. I ordered a Wonder Woman to add to my collection. (And she arrived!)
-There is a new issue of Filmme Fatales out! Huzzah!
-There were a whole heap of cool announcements in February, but here are a few that I found particularly exciting: Mary Harron is directing a Manson-followers movie and Ava DuVernay is directing A Wrinkle in Time; Constance Wu will star in the feature debut of Jennier Cho Suhr, Jessica Chastain will star in Woman Walks Ahead and Taraji P. Henson will play history-making math genius.
-J.J. Abrams has said that Star Wars will (possibly) get an openly gay character. I hope it’s someone with a fair amount of screen time (someone we’ve already met, or someone not yet introduced) and I hope it’s more of a certainty rather than a possibility.
-I‘ve started using Tumblr again, so feel free to follow me as I often reblog movie related stuff.
Favourite Februrary watches:
My movie viewing slowed down in February, partly from energy, but largely because I’ve finally started watching Star Trek TOS (my first foray into the world of Star Trek at all) and I don’t want to watch anything else (or talk about anything else, for that matter). It took me a while to get into the rhythm of the show and I really don’t want to break that.
But I watched more than enough to pick some favourites. I think my absolute favourite was The Phantom (pictured at top of section) and the best was The Misfits. Phenomena (pictured above) and How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying were my favourites from an aesthetic standpoint (the lighting in Phenomena and the colours in How to Succeed!!!). And Mistress America (pictured below) was probably the one I related to the most.
I think I’m sick, and I don’t know if my ailment has a name. It’s just me sitting and staring at the internet or the television for long periods of time, interspersed by trying to not do that and then lying about what I’ve been doing. And then I’ll get so excited about something that the excitement overwhelms me and I can’t sleep or do anything and I just am in love with everything but I can’t figure out how to make myself work in the world.
Watch more movies made by women.
I’m still on track with my 52 Films by Women pledge: I watched six new-to-me movies directed by women in February (The Holiday – pictured above, Real Women Have Curves, Looking for Grace, TiMER, Real Genius, Smithereens – pictured below) as well as two rewatches (Josie and the Pussycats and The Hairy Bird).
I was admittedly quite disappointed with Real Genius and TiMER as I had thought I would love them but they didn’t do anything for me. I didn’t like the characters in either film and I just found myself bored. I did love the popcorn scene at the end of Real Genius, though. I wrote a longer than usual review of TiMER on letterboxd.
One that surprised me was The Holiday. Romcoms aren’t really my thing (I keep saying this, and then I keep ending up loving romcoms, so who knows) but this was just such a charming, funny movie and it made me feel so good. Jack Black felt very out of place but he was the only aspect of the film I felt wasn’t quite right.
And my favourite was probably Real Women Have Curves, which I’ve already written about here.
Watch more Australian films.
I only managed to see one Australian film in February, which was also the only film I saw at the cinema: Looking for Grace, directed by Sue Brooks. You can read my letterboxd review here but I will say that I thoroughly enjoyed it. Odessa Young was just brilliant as Grace, and I’m looking forward to seeing her in The Daughther, too. There’s an article over on The Screen Blog where Young talks about her experience making both films.
On the subject of Australian films, my favourite from last year, The Dressmaker, cracked $20 million at the box office! Huzzah!
Write (and read) more!
I struggled a lot with writing in February. I felt very energised in January, but then all my energy was drained last month. I still managed to post quite a bit on the blog and start some private writing (which is not yet completed). I’ve set up another blog for anything I want to write publicly that doesn’t fit on here – there’s nothing there, yet, but at least I have the space if I need it. I get easily frustrated with myself for being a slow writer (especially when it comes to my dabbling in fiction) but I can only keep practicing. And I’ve managed to write at least a sentence or two for everything I’ve watched on letterboxd, which doesn’t sound like much to be proud of, but it is for me.
When my energy is low, I struggle with reading, as well. I want to focus more on reading reviews and different kinds of articles (like more in-depth ones) in the future.
February reading recommendations:
Very heavy on diversity/inclusion related articles, which isn’t surprising considering the conversations happening, right now.
These 6 female-directed films rocked Sundance, but are still waiting for distribution at Film School Rejects
10 female directors you need to watch in 2016 at Mashable
What it’s really like to work in Hollywood* (*if you’re not a straight white man) at The New York Times
The Original Six: the story of Hollywood’s forgotten feminist crusaders at Pacific Standard
Endearing interracial romance in ‘Flirting’ at Bitch Flicks