Sunday 1 September 2019

this week on 100 Films

A new month begins today, so it's time once again to look back at the old one on 100 Films in a Year...

Plus, there were 3 new reviews this week...

Bad Times at the El Royale (2018)
feels like an imitation of latter-day Tarantino flicks. At least writer-director Drew Goddard has the good sense to dodge the carbon-copy style of Reservoir Dogs mimics by shifting genre, taking some of what QT brought to war movies in Inglourious Basterds and Westerns in The Hateful Eight and applying it to a neo-noir mystery-thriller. He even preempts Tarantino’s own oeuvre by including a Charles Manson-esque cult leader, thereby prefiguring Manson’s role in QT’s own Once Upon a Time in Hollywood.
Read more here.

Sholay (1975)
There’s every chance you’ll’ve only heard of Sholay (if you’ve heard of it at all) as “one of those Indian films that’s on the IMDb Top 250 nowadays”. But in Indian culture it’s a much bigger deal, a huge and longstanding success; like Star Wars or something is to us, I guess, only without the reams of sequels and spinoffs and merchandise and theme parks. Instead, it’s enjoyed remarkable success of its own: it topped the Indian box office for 19 years, was the first film in India to celebrate a Silver Jubilee at over 100 cinemas, and eventually set a record of 60 Golden Jubilees across India. From a British perspective, in 2002 it topped the BFI’s “top ten Indian films of all time” poll, and in 2004 it was voted the “Greatest Indian Movie” in a Sky poll of 1 million British Indians. I first heard about it years ago in that context, and my desire to see it was only exacerbated when it made it onto IMDb’s list. All of which is why I chose it to be my second-ever #200.
Read more here.

Their Finest (2016)
much of Their Finest follows the expected shape of a story like this (the love triangle; the woman coming to be respected by her initially dubious colleagues; etc). Two things work to stop it feeling too staid: an engaging lead cast, and some weightier developments and subplots. The latter includes at least one wholly unexpected twist, which helps make this a more powerful film than the potentially-light “people go on a jolly to make a movie during the war” premise initially seems. There’s a somewhat classical balance of comedy and tragedy there, which is reminiscent of movies from the era the film’s set.
Read more here.

More next Sunday.

Collection Count

Collection Count tracks my DVD/Blu-ray collection via a number of statistics every week.

Two last-minute arrivals led to this update being slightly later than normal: Avengers: Endgame on 3D Blu-ray (out on Monday, but it turned up early), and a Blu-ray box set of the Basil Rathbone Sherlock Holmes films from Italy, which I've had my eye on for ages and finally dropped in price to a steal. Which means a lot of additions to the films total this week.

Number of titles in collection: 2,249 [up 2]
Of which DVDs: 1,131 [no change]
Of which Blu-rays: 1,118 [up 2]
— of which Ultra HD Blu-rays: 32 [no change]

Number of discs in collection: 5,853 [up 10]
Number of films: 2,599 [up 15]
Number of TV episodes: 8,637 [no change]
Number of short films: 671 [no change]

See you next week, faithful reader.