December 2021 Viewing Recap + Movie(s) Of The Month

dec-2021-viewingrecap

 

Happy New Year, everyone!! Well, congrats on surviving 2021… may this new year bring you more peace, joy, love, success and good health!!

happynewyear

I honestly think last year felt like a breeze, especially the last half with Thanksgiving and Christmas gone by so quickly that it practically had time to digest it. Though initially we were going to spend Christmas in Arizona, we decided not to travel during the holidays, especially since my cousin actually got her Quebec trip canceled by her hotel a couple of weeks before her stay. I certainly hope we can start traveling again by Spring at least [fingers crossed!]

Ok, now on to the movie report… 

 

new-to-me-movies

Nightmare Alley

nightmare-alley-still

Full Review

3.5/5 Reels


A Boy Called Christmas

aboy-called-christmas

I wanted to watch a Christmas-themed original movie and this one intrigued me because of Maggie Smith‘s casting. It turns out to be just okay, nowhere near as good as Klaus which I saw last year. I find it amusing to hear Stephen Merchant‘s voice as the little mouse, but Sally Hawkins plays a really weird and awkward villain. Overall it has enough going for it to make for a good family movie, but doesn’t have enough oomph to make it a classic.

3Reels


Tragedy of Macbeth 

tragedy-macbeth-denzel-frances

Full Review

4.5/5 stars


The King’s Man

kings-man-2021

I’m not sure if I’ll have time to do a full review of The King’s Man but let’s just say it’s such a baffling movie that’s tonally off… it started out serious but then became kind of a parody, especially the scenes involving Rhys Ifans as Rasputin (I was laughing and cringing at the same time). If a movie could suffer from an identity crisis, then this would be a perfect example. Ralph Fiennes is still so committed to the role however, which is commendable but also bewildering given the bizarre script. Quite a disappointment from Matthew Vaughn as I enjoyed the first two Kingsman movies.

2-half Reels


Sing 2

sing2-stage

Full Review

4/5 stars


Being The Ricardos

BeingTheRicardos-Kidman-Bardem

Full Review

3.5/5 Reels


The Power of the Dog*

powerofthedog

Review to come…


Spiderman: No Way Home

spidey-nowayhome-peter-mj

Full Review

4.5/5 stars


Matrix Resurrections*

Matrix-Resurrections-dodge-bullets1
Full Review

2Reels


The Movies That Made Us: ROBOCOP

Robocop-original

I quite enjoyed this docu-series that presents the behind-the-scenes look into how great classics got made, as well as the impact of its release, which often beats expectations. Having just seen ROBOCOP on the big screen earlier this year, it was fun to see the journey of how this sci-fi hit got made. Peter Weller was truly perfect for the role, and Paul Verhoeven‘s antics was pretty hilarious to watch.

4/5 stars


Don’t Look Up

dontlookup-supermarket
Full Review

2-half Reels


Non-Stop

nonstop-movie

My hubby and I really enjoy the Liam Neeson action franchise (yep, he is practically his own franchise, ahah). This one was enjoyable, I guess I didn’t expect too much out of his action flicks and I always find him watchable despite the movie’s flaws. I have about 3 more Neeson-In-Action flicks to watch before I do a recap post of all of them.

3Reels


Pig

pig-movie

I haven’t seen a Nic Cage movie in a while as there’s nothing he’s done that interested me of late, but I was intrigued by the good reviews of this one and it lives up to the hype. You could say this is a career-best performance. I really like his subdued, almost passive role in a character-driven drama that deals with someone’s fraught legacy. Michael Sarnoski is a filmmaker to watch in his feature directorial debut. I like his story telling style that takes its time in the way it reveals the character’s journey, and the payoff in the end is an emotional one.

4/5 stars


Zookeeper’s Wife*

zookeepers-wife

3.5/5 Reels


Ron’s Gone Wrong*

rongonewrong

The trailer somehow didn’t wow me but I decided to give it a shot and I ended up enjoying it! Setting the story of a malfunctioning digital device in the form of a cute bubble bot is so clever and hits so close to home even for adults like me. I’d think parents of teens who are constantly on Tik Tok would be amused and terrified at the same time, ahah. The dark side of tech allegory obviously has a not-so-subtle jab against big tech giants like Apple and Facebook, especially the latter given its blatant disregard of privacy concerns. Makes me even more glad I’ve quit using that darn app!

3.5/5 Reels


The Lost Daughter*

lost-daughter

      Review to come


52 films by womenMovies indicated with * (asterisk) indicates those directed by women. I saw five films directed by women this month, so below is my tally of the year for the 52 Films By Women challenge.

  1. Promising Young Woman
  2. Raya and the Last Dragon
  3. One Night in Miami
  4. Where Hands Touch
  5. Orlando
  6. Things Heard and Seen
  7. Love It Was Not (doc)
  8. When Hitler Stole Pink Rabbit
  9. Antoinette dans les Cevennes
  10. The Assistant
  11. Rita Moreno (doc)
  12. Black Widow
  13. Last Letter From Your Lover
  14. Love Sarah
  15. CODA
  16. The Girl In The Book
  17. Reminiscence
  18. The Souvenir
  19. Love & Basketball
  20. Out Kind Of Traitor
  21. Worth
  22. My Name is Pauli Murray
  23. Good On Paper
  24. Proxima
  25. I Am Woman
  26. I’m Your Man
  27. Sounds Like Love
  28. Eternals
  29. Forty Year Old Version
  30. Passing
  31. The Power of the Dog
  32. The Matrix Resurrections
  33. The Zookeeper’s Wife
  34. Ron’s Gone Wrong
  35. The Lost Daughter

Well, I’ve only managed to complete about 70% of the 52 total… which means I have to do better next year! I might do a separate post of my top 5 favorite movies directed by women I saw last year.


TV SERIES

I finished season 1 of these two series that I quite enjoyed…

Hawkeye (Disney+) & The Wheel of Time (Amazon Prime)

I have to admit that one of the main reasons I tuned in to Hawkeye was because Florence Pugh was going to appear as Yelena. Wish they had her in at least half of the episodes instead of just two. She’s SO phenomenal as Yelena and was definitely the scene stealer of Black Widow. She deserves her own standalone series and movie!! In any case, I’m also looking forward to seeing more of Kingpin in the MCU!

As for Wheel of Time, well I like the first season enough that I’m anticipating more from this series. I sure hope there are more Daniel Henney as LAN in future episodes though, he’s got such a strong screen presence that demands to be showcased more.


REWATCHES

Spiderman: Far From Home

Captain America: The Winter Soldier

Avengers Infinity War

Avengers Endgame

My rewatches are clearly inspired by Spiderman: No Way Home, ahah. I saw the previous Tom Holland version w/ Jake Gyllenhaal as Mysterio to prepare for the new one. The Winter Soldier is my fave MCU movie so far that I usually watch at least once a year. I started watching Infinity War on a whim and of course once you watched that, you gotta finish it up with Endgame. The death of Black Widow and Tony Stark still hit me hard even on repeat viewing, which is a testament to how good the character development has been in the MCU, bravo Kevin Feige!


DECEMBER MOVIE(s) OF THE MONTH

POWER OF THE DOG + THE LOST DAUGHTER

It’s another tie this month as I can’t choose between these two excellent films that are both directed by women. Jane Campion is a true auteur who’s been making films since the mid 80s, while Maggie Gyllenhaal has just ventured into directing, but I was equally impressed with Power of the Dog and The Lost Daughter … both are supremely-crafted and have a haunting effect long after the film is done.

Full reviews coming in the next week or so.


Well, what did you watch last month and what’s YOUR favorite film(s) you saw in DECEMBER?

18 thoughts on “December 2021 Viewing Recap + Movie(s) Of The Month

  1. I have Power of the Dog and The Lost Daughter in my Netflix watchlist as I hope to see them in the coming weeks. I just saw Nightmare Alley earlier today as that was a fucking good film. Not as good as the original 1947 film but I do feel that it had a better ending.

    1. Hey, glad you like Nightmare Alley and liked it. I still want to see the original at some point. Well, hope you see Power of the Dog and The Lost Daughter soon, both will end up in my top 10 of 2021.

  2. Pingback: Lisa Marie’s Week In Review: 12/27/21 — 1/2/22 | Through the Shattered Lens

  3. Yeah, this past year flew by so fast and I hope this year things will get better. Fingers crossed! I have my first trip of the year this Friday, heading out west to San Diego. It will be my first trip anywhere since my last trip to Miami back in May.

    One of the new to me film was Neeson’s latest action picture, The Marksman. It wasn’t bad but it’s one of those movies that should’ve just released directly to streaming services. The only Neeson action film that I’ve yet to see is Cold Pursuit. The other new movies I saw were Matrix 4 and Spider-Man: No Way Home. I rewatched No Time To Die, liked it better the second time around. Then I watched my other “Christmas” film, Batman Returns on Christmas night.

    I’ve just been watching a lot of shows this past month. Finally watched Squid Game, now I get why people all over the world were obsessed with it. Then I just finished the new seasons of Succession, Hawkeye and The Witcher. I’m currently watching a new show from Tayler Sheridan called Mayor of Kingstown. Then I’ll start on the new season of Cobra Kai. And I just watched the first episode of The Book of Boba Fett. So many things to watch and so little time. Lol!

    1. Oh cool, enjoy San Diego! I went to LA in the Fall to see John Williams concert so I met up at Dana Point with my best friend who lives in SD.

      I saw The Marksman last month, I didn’t really enjoy it as much as Neeson’s other films. Cold Pursuit is good though, Tom Bateman was a fun villain. I have watched No Time To Die twice on the big screen, so probably will wait before rewatching it.

      Oh so you enjoyed Squid Game? Maybe you can do a write-up on that one at some point? I’m not that interested in the Boba Fett series, even though I love The Mandalorian. As for Succession, I better start watching that before it gets to as many seasons as GOT, ahah.

      1. I think the only reason I’m not a hurry to see Cold Pursuit is that I really liked the original film and this version just looks so similar. I believe it’s also directed by the same director that directed the original version. I’ll eventually watch it at some point. Neeson has pretty much became Charles Bronson in our time. Bronson starred in so many lame to decent action films in the latter part of his career.

        I’ll remember to write my review of Squid Game, just remind me when you want to publish it. After my San Diego trip, I was supposed to head overseas to Malta but that has been delayed because of Omicron. So I’ll have some free time later this month.

        I believe next season of Succession will be its last and I think that’s a good idea. They can’t keep milking the story like Games of Throne.

        1. Ah right, I forgot Cold Pursuit was a remake. I just saw a new Neeson-in-Action trailer today, Blacklight, and it opens on my birthday! I love his action films even though they’re predictable, I mean he’s like James Bond where he’d never die (well unless that Bond is Daniel Craig, ahahaha)

          Oh just take your time on Squid Game, I figure if you like the show you’d be more inclined to write about it. Oh glad to hear Succession will end after 4 seasons so I can finally catch up to it soon!

          1. I just saw the trailer of Balcklight like 10 minutes ago! Ha ha. It looks another generic Neeson’s action flick, I’ll wait till it’s available to rent on Vudu or iTunes. I won’t be going back to theaters until The Batman opens. When I went and saw SpiderMan, the guy sat next to me was unmasked and coughed like every 5 minutes. I didn’t want to make a scene but there are some inconsiderate pricks out there.

            I enjoyed Squid Game, it wasn’t anything new. It’s similar to The Running Man and The Hunger Games movies. Desperate people had to do terrible things to earn money. But the games were pretty inventive and I think that’s why so many people watched all over the world.

    1. I guess I should’ve taken a clue from the past two sequels which were pretty badly reviewed. But I thought maybe this fourth one could be good and I was curious to step back into The Matrix, alas it turns out to be another abysmal movie.

        1. Ahah, I love that word too, as well as ‘discombobulated.’ I wish I didn’t have to use it for Matrix 4, but yes who doesn’t love Keanu and he’s the kind of actor who uses his huge paycheck well, which is so rare in Hollywood.

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