What I’ve Watched in my First Week on 2013

Happy Monday all! This the first FULL work week I have for a while now, I’m definitely gonna miss the partial work week from the Holiday season, ahah.

In lieu of a weekend roundup, I thought I’d share how my movie watching has been in its first week of the new year. Actually it’s been rather slow and I haven’t been to the movie theater since The Hobbit over a week ago. Not that I miss going to the cinema, though some things are definitely meant to see on the big screen, which is why we’d go see Life of Pi next weekend.

AMCtheater

I miss the movie-going experience, though not the waiting-in-line part

I’ll be going to a couple of advanced screenings this week, but due to the embargo, I can’t talk about ‘em yet. Let’s just say one of them is likely going to be in the running for Academy Awards nominations and the other one is a period action film starring a few very popular actors. So anyways, I’ve only seen about three movies so far and three of them were new to me.

  • The Shop Around the Corner (1940)
    ShopAroundtheCornerPoster
    The inspiration for You’ve Got Mail starring Margaret Sullavan and James Stewart is lovely. I didn’t know it was set in Hungary. Though the mail correspondent part wasn’t as prominent a plot as the remake, but the scene at the cafe were pretty much identical.

    I need to watch more James Stewart movies, I think The Philadelphia Story is next! Oh, I also like Frank Morgan as the store owner Mr. Matuschek!

    ..
  • Safety Not Guaranteed (2012)

    SafetyNotGuaranteedPosterI’m so glad I finally saw this. I’ve been seeing a ton of great reviews on this one, glad it was available on iTunes. All of the actors were unknown to me, but I was impressed by Aubrey Plaza and Mark Duplass. The story is wonderfully bizarre and it was full of quirky characters as well. Duplass (who reminds me a bit of Sean Bean) plays Kenneth, a supermarket employee who put a classified ad seeking a companion for time travel, and Plaza plays Darius, one of the three magazine employees who head out on assignment to write a story on it.

    The premise makes for off-the-wall and hilarious scenarios, but yet the story ends up being quite heartfelt, especially when it’s between Kenneth and Darius. It keeps you guessing throughout up until that whoa! ending. It’s the kind of ending that makes you stand up and cheer despite how preposterous it is, definitely one of the most original time-travel stories I’ve ever watched. If you’re looking for great, memorable characters and emotional gratification, this movie is not to be missed. I quite like the music too, my favorite part was when Kenneth sang The Big Machine with a Zither!
  • The Wings of the Dove (1997)
    ///
    WingsoftheDovePosterI’ve been wanting to see this movie for quite a while, especially when someone mentioned about the memorable scene at the London Tube. Well, there’s that and a boat load of memorable rainy scenes in Venice too!

    It’s based on a 1902 novel by Henry James. The tagline says it all: A couple with everything but money. An heiress with everything but love. A temptation no one could resist. Helena Bonham Carter in one of her plethora of period dramas was quite bewitching as a young woman, Kate, who’s torn between love and her privileged life. She’s basically an impoverished girl who’s taken up by her wealthy aunt (Charlotte Rampling), but she’s in love with a penniless journalist Merton (Linus Roache). When she befriends a dying American heiress Millie (Alison Elliot), she concocts a plot to enable her to have her cake and eat it too, but things don’t exactly go according to plan.

    Oh, the things people in the name of love… the chemistry between Helena and Linus was scorching, but man, it’s awful and sad how far Kate is willing to do to get what she wants. It’s really a dark, twisted and poignant love story. It certainly makes for a passionate and ravishing period drama. Both HBC and Linus were captivating, Linus was quite mesmerizing, he’s got such an uncanny resemblance to Christian Bale, no wonder he was cast as Bruce Wayne Sr! Bonham-Carter was nominated for an Oscar for this role. I pretty much love all the performances, down to the supporting roles with thespians like Michael Gambon and Charlotte Rampling.

    It’s the kind of story that lingers long after the end credits. In fact, I kept thinking about it all night all the way until this morning. I feel like this film deserves a full write-up, which I still may do in the future. The cinematography alone is breathtaking… all in all a bewitching adaptation.
  • Indiana Jones & The Last Crusade (re-watch)
    It never fails to entertain. Sean Connery + Harrison Ford pairing is just brilliant, plus there River Phoenix in the beginning as the young Indy. I wish he were still alive today, I’d rather see him than Shia in the fourth installment! Anyway, we also watched the making-of documentary which was pretty cool as Spielberg went almost scene-by-scene on various locations.


Well, glad to report that the three new ones were all very enjoyable. So what movies did you watch in the first week of the New Year?

59 thoughts on “What I’ve Watched in my First Week on 2013

    • Hi Michael, hope you enjoy it! I’m glad I got started with a classic this year. Do you have another James Stewart recommendation for me?

      • I always recommend ‘Anatomy of a Murder’ for those looking for a great James Stewart work. Great cast, too. Along those same lines, if you’re up for an oater, I suggest John Ford’s highly underrated and contemplative Western, ‘The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance’. Stewart, John Wayne, Lee Marvin and others make it one for fans of the genre and those perhaps not enthusiasts. Hope you enjoy whatever you screen.

  1. I like both Aubrey Plaza and Mark Duplass, both of them stars in two of my favorite sitcoms on TV. Plaza is in Parks & Recreation and Duplass stars in The League, both shows are so funny. I’ll give Safety Not Guaranteed a rent this weekend.

    I’ve been catching up on two movies I didn’t go see in theater this past summer, Men in Black 3 and The Expendables 2, to my surprise I enjoyed both of them quite a bit. I do think the Men in Black franchise has run out of steem though, Will Smith look bored in the movie. But the film has some really funny parts.

    • I should start watching that show! I just realized Plaza was in P & R. Which one is The League? Is that a comedy?

      Ahah, you saw two movies I don’t care for. I actually saw parts of Expendables 2 on the plane as Ivan was watching. It was the part when Chuck Norris came out, it was such a hoot!

      • Yeah the League is about a bunch of friends who are crazy about fantasy football, if you’re a football fan then you’re really going to enjoy the show. Even if you’re not you might enjoy it because it’s so funny watching these guys get so upset about their fantasy teams. Just like in real life, people are obsess with it.

  2. The Philadelphia Story is tremendous. To round out your “Shop Around the Corner” experience, you should also see “In the Good Old Summertime,” which is a musical treatment starring Judy Garland and Van Johnson!

    We’ve been doing some rewatching lately…I think I’ve seen A Good Year and Bring It On so far in 2013. :)

    • I definitely will see Philadelphia Story. As for the other one, well I haven’t even seen Judy Garland’s most famous film The Wizard of Oz yet, I might see that before the prequel comes out.

      Rewatching is always good, I might do a marathon of LOTR at some point. Can’t believe it’s been over two years since we bought the BD set!

  3. I love Wings of the Dove; it was one of my first overlooked films :) It is a sombre film but lovely at the same time, you know?

    And yes I agree with Keith Philadelphia Story is not to be missed. I would also suggest looking at them somewhat linearly just because you can see that over time Stewart’s roles changed significantly. The most notable difference is in the pre/post WWII period.

  4. I’ve never seen “The Shop Around The Corner” but I did enjoy James Stewart in Vertigo, when I finally got around to watching it last year.

    • Hi Paul! I still haven’t seen Vertigo yet, but will do soon! I’m gonna try to do at least a dozen James Stewart films by year’s end :)

  5. I love The Shop Around The Corner – in fact I love most James Stewart films. Given that I’m trying to watch all my unreviewed DVDs by the end of the year it’s very likely I’ll have joined you in watching 12 Stewarts bythe end of 2013.

    So far this year I’ve seen Short Circuit, Les Miserables, The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel, Jack Reacher and Quartet. Only reviewed Les Miserables so far but it’s been a fairly decent start to the year.

    • Hurray! Perhaps we could do a blogathon of sort with Jimmy Stewart? :D

      Hey, you’ve watched quite a lot in the past week. I’ve never heard of Short Circuit before, did you like that? I’ll check out your Les Miz review.

    • Yeah, it was bold and preposterous, but yeah I was loving it! It was totally unexpected too, the movie did a good job in building up the suspense about Kenneth’s project.

  6. Cool, glad you got to see Safety Not Guaranteed! I liked that one quite a bit. If you get a chance, check out The Do-Deca-Pentathlon. It’s good low-budget fun directed by the Duplass brothers.

  7. Hoping to catch Safety Not Guaranteed soon. Aubrey Plaza is hilarious. Love her deadpan-ness.

    Only seen one film so far this year and it was, as you know, Flight. Need to see more me thinks!

    • Hey, there are still 385 days to catch up on movies :D So you watch Park & Recreation? Yeah, Aubrey does have that deadpan look, I just saw her on Conan last night.

  8. I saw Safety Not Guaranteed not too long ago and it’s definitely a quirky, offbeat romantic comedy. It didn’t totally work for me, maybe because it felt a bit too “indie” or maybe just because the humor didn’t really click for me. Glad you enjoyed it though! :D

    • Bummer you didn’t love it Cas. It was definitely quirky and I don’t watch indie as much as other bloggers but I really enjoyed it. The part with the other magazine employees were meh though, I wish they just focus more on Kenneth and Darius.

  9. I am looking forward to Safety Not Guaranteed. I’d also like to see Wings of the Dove. Even though I love classic novels, I’ve tried Henry James’s books several times and found them hard going. :-) Maybe I should skip straight to the film adaptation.

    • Hi Steph, both are highly recommended. I don’t know if I could read his books, I’m more of a movie watcher than reader in general anyway.

  10. There’s a “making of” for The Last Crusade?!?! Why did I not know this? That movie is one of my all-time favorites.. I creeped out a girl on the street who said her dog’s name was Indiana, and I replied “Indiana?? We named the DOG Indiana.” haaaaa oh Dr. Jones.

    • Yeah it was in the Indiana Jones Blu-ray box set. It’s worth buying for all the extras, though I wish there was an option not to buy the fourth movie, ahah. Yeah, that quip was funny indeed, the whole banter between Jones Sr & Jr never gets old!

    • I think you’ll enjoy ‘Safety Not Guranteed’ Mark, it’s quirky and bizarre (in a good way) and heartwarming at the same time.

      I’m so glad we got the Indy BD set, though we wish we could get the set WITHOUT the fourth movie, ahah. Ah well at least there’s miss Blanchett in there, love her!

  11. Out of those movies I’ve only seen Safety Not Guaranteed, which I really liked. Have watched a lot of movies this first week of the year, with 12 movies already under my belt (currently 15)

      • Yeah, haven’t got a project at the moment (have to wait for my boss to assign a new one), so I have some extra time to spend watching movies. ;)

        • Hey, enjoy it while it last man! Btw, kind of out of topic but my hubby and I are contemplating going to Amsterdam in early Fall, how far is that from Rotterdam? We don’t have a lot of time though, probably just 3-4 nights there as we might go to Bruges and Paris, too.

          • Holland is a very small country, you can get around very fast. Amsterdam to Rotterdam is about an hour by train. You are planning to see a lot in a short time ;)

            • Oh only an hour? Who knows we might be able to meet up :D I’m really hoping there are some Indonesian restaurants in Amsterdam too, he..he..

              • That would be cool, I could show you guys Rotterdam and you can come over for a nice dinner.

                There are a lot of Indonesian restaurants in Holland, so that shouldn’t be a problem.

  12. The Philadelphia Story is one of my five favourite films so I hope you like it. As I said, I’m glad you liked The Wings of the Dove. It is gorgeous, right?(But Italy is such a dream for any cinematographer, no?). It’s difficult for me not to sympathise with Kate and where the film one-ups the book for me is in having a dense appreciation and understanding of all parties involved.

    It does leave you somewhat melancholy as it lingers on in your mind.

    • Venice is just so unbelievably gorgeous n romantic. The thing is, i was a bit mad at Kate but at the same time i get that she needed her aunt for her dad’s sake. But to ask someone u love to cheat on u for money is just… devastating. It does make u think about it for days.

  13. The Wings of the Dove is such a great film, Helena was brilliant in it. Fun fact about Indiana Jones – Alison Doody who was there was actually the first choice to play Eowyn in LotR but she got pregnant. It’s a shame that she wasn’t in more movies – she is so pretty!

  14. I’ve been thinking about watching Safety Not Guaranteed but I always end up choosing something else. It’s on Amazon for “free” (if you pay for Prime that is) and I could very well watch it as soon as I’m writing this.
    As for the other films, I haven’t seen The Shop Around the Corner or The Wings of the Dove. Though the latter doesn’t peak my interest, I might have to put the former in my ever larger queue of films to watch.

  15. I just saw You’ve Got Mail yesterday! Isn’t that a coincidence? I loved it, though it was predictable. I’ve been meaning to watch Safety No Guaranteed, but always something in the way. I might check out Parental Guidance later. Seems you have a pretty good week. First full week after holiday feels a bit slow ahah..

    • Oh cool! Glad you enjoyed it. I didn’t mind its predictability as both Hanks and Ryan are so sweet together. Safety No Guaranteed is worth a watch Andina. Yeah it’s a rather slow going in the new year, thankfully there are some screenings to get me to watch more movies :D

  16. Yay! Can’t wait to hear your thoughts on The Philadelphia Story! :)

    Love Indiana Jones & the LC and The Wings of the Dove, and I really enjoyed Safety Not Guaranteed as well.

    I rewatched Django Unchained and Les Miserables, and I saw Rust & Bone, The Impossible, Not Fade Away, and Promised Land. Once I see Amour and Zero Dark Thirty soon, my top 10 list should be ready to post. :)

    • I have a feeling I’d enjoy The Philadelphia Story! I mean with that cast, can’t imagine I wouldn’t.

      I should give Amour a shot once it’s available to rent, that one keeps coming up in people’s list. I missed Not Fade Away at TCFF, that should be interesting for music lovers.

    • I’ve always like Jimmy Stewart ever since ‘It’s A Wonderful Life.’ I definitely would watch Philadelphia Story next. Haven’t heard of Harvey but will look that up now.

  17. Safety Not Guaranteed was wonderful! Mark Duplass is so bloody charming! I look forward to seeing him in front of the camera more!

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