Sunday, June 10, 2012
Monday, February 27, 2012
You all knew it was coming up. Here is a list of some of my favorite films of the year:
Note: I really hate ranking films, so please don't give too much weight to the rankings. These films are all worth seeing.
Almost Got In There But Not Quite:
-The Ides of March
(Tie) 5. Hugo- I mean, how can you go wrong with Scorsese directing a love letter to the history of cinema? When I first saw the trailer for this movie I had my doubts, but in the back of my mind I kept thinking, “it’s Scorsese, even his misses have value.” Well my doubts were squelched completely. Martin Scorsese is dubbed a master for a reason, and I thought Hugo was one of his best efforts.
4. Moneyball- I read this book over a vacation in like two days and thought it was one of the most fascinating non-fiction books I had ever read, and it translated perfectly to screen. Pitt disappeared into Billy Beane’s persona. I loved how it was almost the anti-sports movie. A look into the behind-the-scenes of baseball, warts and all. Wally Pfister's shots were really and inventive aided to the story beautifully. I’d have to say this film takes the cake when it comes to best acting from an ensemble cast. Everyone was fantastic.
3. Midnight in Paris- For me, this is Allen’s best work since Crimes and Misdemeanors. I loved how light-hearted, yet meaningful it was. Owen Wilson took the “Woody Allen Persona” and made it into his own thing—which worked wonderfully. I also really appreciated how un-sci-fi the time travel elements were. It basically worked like a dream, you get into a car and then poof—you’re in a different era. Simple and effective.
Thursday, February 9, 2012
What has been going on in David Dangelico's life? Well...Lia and I were planning to move to another city. And when I mean another city I don't mean Alexandria or Arlington. I mean that we were looking at places as far South as Panama City, and as far West as San Diego. BUT, we have decided to give NOVA/DC another year to see if we can get anywhere in our careers.
"What does she do?" you ask?
I'll try my best to blog more (for real this time), and you can bet they will be a bit more comics-infused!
Friday, December 2, 2011
Here's a little list of what I've been listening to and what I deem as my favorite records of the year.
Overall it was a pretty solid year for music, with a bunch of artists finally having their breakout records, and some old favorites remind us again why we loved them in the first place. Also, there was a new Tom Waits record, which...you know, is always good.
The records are in no real order unless noted otherwise.
Bon Iver, Bon Iver (Favorite record of the year)
Wye Oak- Civilian
Tom Waits- Bad as Me
m83- Hurry Up, We're Dreaming
The War on Drugs- Slave Ambient
Childish Gambino- Camp
Future Islands- On the Water
Wild Beasts- Smother
Kurt Vile- Smoke Ring for My Halo
Wild Flag- Wild Flag
Iron & Wine- Kiss Each Other Clean
Beirut- The Riptide
James Blake- James Blake
The Antlers- Burst Apart
Kanye West & Jay-Z- Watch the Throne
Girls- Father, Son, Holy Ghost
TV on the Radio- Nine Types of Light
Fleet Foxes- Helplessness Blues
Favorite Song of the Year: Civilian by Wye Oak
Favorite Non-albums: Pearl Jam 20 Soundtrack, Drive Soundtrack
Lots of great music came out this year, if you have a moment and need some new tunes--any of the above should do the trick!
Monday, June 20, 2011
At the moment the comment didnt really bother me. In the context of the conversation, she was saying that the way I percieve violence and language in film is from an artistic standpoint and not a parental one--which is certainly true. I am not a parent therefore I watch films for my own enjoyment and entertainment--not to screen them for children (although I do think I could do it if you asked me to). And while I may be more careful about what I bring into the house when a young David or a young Lia is in the house, I would like to think that my fundamental beliefs on movies and music will not be changed when that day (far off as it is) may come.
But it got me to thinking about how I, and in turn we as a people, look at movies. Do I look at films differently than other people? My first instinct was to say Yes, of course, I've taken film classes, I know more about the way a film is made than the average person on the street. But what exactly does that mean? Just because I know a little bit more about how a film is made than the average person doesn't mean that my film-going experience is different than other people (also, that was quite the conceited thought you just had there, self, cool your jets). Are cinephiles so caught up in the technical aspects of films that we can't look at films in any other way? Of course not. In fact, I think it is impossible for anyone to step foot in a theater and not watch a film from a personal, emotional, or cultural standpoint. It is impossible not to take a film and look at how aspects relate to us or affect us. Movies do this to us without us even knowing (at least good movies do this to us without even knowing).The basic question, and the reason why we as a people love going to movies is because in some way or another we have an emotional or cognitive response to what is happening on screen. We all feel movies.
For instance, last year Darren Aronofsky's Black Swan was released. It was a wonderfully made film, superbly acted, and impeccably written. However, and this is not necessarily a knock on the film as I think it was intentional by the filmmakers, it left me emotionally cold. I understood and could see why it was a well made movie based on what was happening on the screen, and I certainly went home and had long conversations about it with my wife and my friends--yet I cannot say that the film affected me emotionally. Black Swan was a much more cognitive film. It was a thinking film and really is meant to be a head-trip rather than an emotional journey--which it succeeds wildly in being.
Now, on the other end of the spectrum, Aronofky's film The Wrestler (an equally well made film) does not have the trippy psychological plot that Black Swan has. However, it is very similar. It is about a physical performer, who loves his craft so much he is willing to give anything to it. A rather basic premise, yet it is one that The Wrestler and Black Swan share, perhaps on purpose. What makes the films different is how we relate to what is on screen. The Wrestler is much more of an emotional journey than Black Swan is. Perhaps because while Black Swan was very much a journey into the head of it's main character, The Wrestler is very much a journey into the heart of it's protagonist.
We all bring our own baggage with us into the movie theater. However our baggage does not necessarily mean that we are able to comprehend a film more-so or less-so than others. Say a person does not come from a broken home and watches the film Kramer vs. Kramer. Is he or she still able to understand the emotional complications of the film? Of course they are. Of course they can see the hardships and feel the heartache. Why? Because it is a well-made effective movie. The only difference between a person watching the film who has come from a broken home and a person who hasn't is one will be able to say: yes, that is an accurate portrayal and that is how it feels. They both feel what is on the screen, one just might be able to say whether or not it was they way it was for them.
Movies are a part of our culture for good reason.They connect us. They bridge the gaps that are created by life and help us to understand each other better. This is not only true about film, but any kind of craft.So, I guess in a way, we all look at film from a technical and artistic standpoint--we just don't necessarily realize it.
Friday, June 3, 2011
I stumbled upon Paris, Texas in a bit of a peculiar way. I was bored one night and I was watching interviews with my favorite musicians, in this case The Hold Steady. The bassist listed his favorite films, two of which I loved (A History of Violence (2005) and Videodrome (1983)). Then he mentioned that his favorite film was Paris, Texas, so I casually put it at the top of my netflix queue. When it came in the mail, I invited this girl, Lia (you all know the one) over to my apartment to watch it. We had planned to watch the movie in my living room, but alas, my roommate Quinn was watching Alien 3 (1992), so Lia and I had to change to my bedroom. If this sounds like a sly trick, you would be wrong.
Let me take the time to explain what consisted of my apartment bedroom. There was a mattress on the floor in the corner, a dog house with a two year-old Dalmatian-Lab mix inside, a desk with a crappy laptop, and a crappy TV sitting on a barely standing crappy table, oh and a beach chair. Not exactly ideal conditions for wooing. We started the film, regardless the conditions, as well as my dog's insistence that she lay on the bed and watch as well.
We were transfixed, something in the film clicked in both me and Lia's brains. We both got it and talked all night (after she went home of course) about what we loved about it.
Wednesday, March 9, 2011
The Social Network
Toy Story 3
The King's Speech
Never Let Me Go
Best Direction: David Fincher for The Social Network
Best Writing: Aaron Sorkin for The Social Network
Most Underrated Movie: Tie, Never Let Me Go and Shutter Island
Most Overrated Movie: The Kids Are All Right (I thought it was a good movie, just didnt understand the hype)
Worst Movie: Sex and the City 2 (only because I was too scared to see The Last Airbender)
Best Cinematography: True Grit
Best Original Score: The Social Network
Best Documentary: Restrepo
If you havent seen these films, all of them are worth checking out (except, of course, the worst movie of the year). Here's to another great year of cinema!!
Thursday, December 9, 2010
If you haven't gotten a chance to listen to any one of the albums off this list I suggest you get to the nearest record store pronto. 2010 has been one of the best years in music in a looooong time.
1) Kanye West- My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy
2) Arcade Fire- The Suburbs
3) Janelle Monae- The ArchAndroid
4) The National- High Violet
5) The Tallest Man on Earth- The Wild Hunt
6) Beach House- Teen Dream
7) Local Natives- Gorilla Manor
8) Max Richter- Infra
9) The Walkmen- Lisbon
10) Best Coast- Crazy For You
11) Sleigh Bells- Treats
12) Big Boi- Sir Luscious Leftfoot: The Son of Chico Dusty
13) Deerhunter- Halcyon Digest
14) Wild Nothing- Gemini
15) Joanna Newsome- Have One On Me
16) Cee Lo Green- The Lady Killer
17) LCD Soundsystem- This Is Happening
18) The Roots- How I Got Over
19) Sufjan Stevens- The Age of Adz
20) Spoon- Transference
21) No Age- Everything In Between
22) Broken Social Scene- Forgiveness Rock Record
23) Sun Kil Moon- Admiral Fell Promises
24) Four Tet- There Is Love In You
25) Band of Horses- Infinite Arms