Home > Film, Opinions (Film) > Film: 30 Movies in 30 Days: Day 01

Film: 30 Movies in 30 Days: Day 01

This post is part of a month-long project, answering thirty topics about movies over thirty days. The subject for the first day is:

The best movie you saw during the last year

It’s a fairly general question. Should I just include films that released within the last twelve months? Should I just include films I’ve not seen before? Or should I include any film I’ve seen within the past year, even if I’ve seen it before? The latter is no good because question thirty is about my favourite film of all time, which will be one of several choices that I’ve watched again within the last twelve months, so I’d be repeating myself. With that in mind I’ll answer all three versions:

The best movie you saw that released during the last year:

Carl and Russel

Up

(Click image for link to larger source)

Pixar really are fantastic, and the way they’ve managed to make Disney relevant again is an incredible feat. While I don’t universally adore all their films (Ratatouille and Cars did little for me) they really have put out some of my favourite films (not just animated or childrens’ films). Finding Nemo, The Incredibles, and especially WALL-E are all marvellous.

I knew very little about Up‘s plot before I went to see it. I knew about the old man in the balloon house and that when it takes off a young scout is on the porch, but that was about the extent of it (in fact the biggest reveal of info after that came from in the cinema itself while waiting to watch it, where it showed that the video game had jungle scenes including a giant bird).

The film itself was just so much more, from the opening that ran through Carl’s life of love, compromise and loss, to the reason he decides to fly away and what he finds there. Carl, Russell, Kevin, Dug and Charles Muntz are all great characters expertly written, there’s lots of humour and action in addition to the moving moments, and it’s almost flawless. Even if I had watched more new releases within the past year Up would have been a definite contender, and as it stands currently there’s nothing else close to competing with it.

The best movie you saw that didn’t release during the last year that you haven’t seen before

Charles Foster Kane

Citizen Kane

(Click image for link to source)

It’s easy to be dismissive of something universally beloved, and Citizen Kane is widely thought of as one of the greatest films every made. So can a 1941 black and white movie really be one of the greatest films every made, almost seventy years later? Yes, yes it can.

The film starts with the death of its titular character, Charles Foster Kane, as an old man. The last thing he says is “Rosebud”, the meaning of which is a mystery to everybody who knew him, which sets a reporter on the trail to try and find out what it was that Kane was thinking of in his final moments. This sets the stage for a highlight reel of sorts of Kane’s entire life, all the key moments that the interviewees feel shaped the man into who he was.

Kane himself is a fantastic character, and despite knowing in general what Rosebud was referring to (like a couple of other films – The Empire Strikes Back, The Sixth Sense, Soylent Green – the revelation has become common knowledge) I don’t feel that it lessened the impact of the film in any way. Excellent performances built around an incredible central character truly make Citizen Kane a wonderful film.

The best movie you saw that didn’t release during the last year that you’ve seen before

?

?

As mentioned above, I’ve very likely watched what I’ll declare my favourite movie of all time within the last twelve months, which would make this entry a double with the final entry of the series a month from now. So with that in mind this entry will be kept a mystery for the moment (although I’ve mentioned one likely suspect before on this blog), and I’ll try to remember to include a link here when it has been posted (Update: the post is here, the final entry in the project).

wond
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