Films in 2018: August

As I mentioned last month, August was set to be a busy month for me. Some personal news: I moved to Sacramento a few days ago! After working in Huntsville, Alabama for two years as a news producer for the ABC-affiliate station, I’m moving on to start work at the NBC-affiliate station here on Monday! Between all the moving arrangements though, I did squeeze in several movies and a few trips to the theater, including the 50th-anniversary screening of 2001: A Space Odyssey in IMAX. Sadly I didn’t get to watch as many movies from TCM’s Summer Under the Stars program as I would’ve liked, but I’m going to try to watch a few movies on the app before they leave. Anyway, let’s look at what I watched in August…

New-to-Me: 19

Re-Watched: 7

New-to-Me Films by Decade:

  • 1920s – 0
  • 1930s – 1
  • 1940s – 1
  • 1950s – 6
  • 1960s – 0
  • 1970s – 3
  • 1980s – 1
  • 1990s – 1
  • 2000s – 0
  • 2010s – 6

List of New-to-Me Films:

  1. Room at the Top (1959)
  2. Christopher Robin (2018)
  3. The Spy Who Dumped Me (2018)
  4. BlacKkKlansman (2018)
  5. Man in the Dark (1953)
  6. The Sellout (1952)
  7. The Unsuspected (1947)
  8. The Taking of Pelham One Two Three (1974)
  9. Charley Varrick (1973)
  10. Convicted (1950)
  11. The Tunnel of Love (1958)
  12. Julie (1956)
  13. Split (2016)
  14. Crazy Rich Asians (2018)
  15. Sunday Bloody Sunday (1971)
  16. Marked Woman (1937)
  17. To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before (2018)
  18. Yentl (1983)
  19. Out of Sight (1998)

A Few Favorite Discoveries:

BlacKkKlansman (2018)

BlacKkKlansman (2018), directed by Spike Lee

The latest Spike Lee joint is an excellent blend of entertainment and reflection, serving as a sharp commentary on current events in America while presenting an incredible true story. John David Washington leads the cast, and proves to be a talented actor outside the shadow of his father Denzel; I really look forward to seeing what he does following BlacKkKlansman. Other noteworthy performances include Adam Driver and Topher Grace, the latter of who I didn’t realize just how good he was in his role until seeing footage of the real David Duke. This movie is easily one of my top favorites of 2018, and I hope it’s still a presence come awards season.

The Taking of Pelham One Two Three (1974)

The Taking of Pelham One Two Three (1974), directed by Joseph Sargent

Walter Matthau was just one of a handful of honorees I was able to catch from TCM’s Summer Under the Stars program, and he’s an actor whose movies I tend to enjoy, whether as a whole or if it’s just his performance. Fortunately, in the case of The Taking of Pelham One Two Three, which had been on my watchlist for some time, it was a thrill to watch from beginning to end. The film also features what has to be one of the all-time great closing images, which also perfectly encapsulates the actor’s essence.

Crazy Rich Asians (2018)

Crazy Rich Asians (2018), directed by Jon M. Chu

Crazy Rich Asians was one of my most anticipated movies of the summer; between all the usual blockbuster fare (namely of the superhero genre, as of late), I was ready for an extravagant romantic comedy, and this movie certainly lived up to those expectations. Being of half Asian descent myself, this was a movie I was rooting for, and I’m so happy to see its massive success so far! I really can’t wait to see the sequel(s), as I had such a great time watching this cast and the characters they played.

Out of Sight (1998)

Out of Sight (1998), directed by Steven Soderbergh

This is a movie that’s been on my radar for a while, and after having recently watched Steven Soderbergh’s Ocean’s movies, I knew I had to get around to watching this one sooner than later. Out of Sight came out three years before the Ocean’s Eleven remake, and watching this really shows why George Clooney has such an enduring, charismatic presence. Jennifer Lopez is also perfectly matched with him, and gives a good performance all her own in separate scenes, though the movie is really at its best when the two are on screen together. The movie also features a great supporting cast, including the likes of Ving Rhames, Don Cheadle, Catherine Keener, and Albert Brooks, as well as some slick dialogue.

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One thought on “Films in 2018: August

  1. Walter Matthau is another example of an actor who has a lot of great work overshadowed by the fact he’s made so many great movies. When you ask people about Matthau films, they always go to The Odd Couple, Fail Safe, or as you mentioned, Charley Varrick. Taking of Pelham 123 is just such an example. Matthau is tremendous in this movie.

    By the way, you can replace the words “Walter Matthau” in the previous paragraph with the words “Robert Shaw” and change the movies to The Sting, Jaws, and Battle of the Bulge, and it’s still a true statement.

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