Monday, October 17, 2005

A couple of cool projects

These are endeavors that I really admire and would love to undertake myself but, sadly, probably would never have enough time for.

Over at the Slant Magazine blog, Ed Gonzalez is running through his top ten films from every year essentially since the beginning of cinema, jumping around for variety (the most recent entry is 1948). The fact that not only has he seen ten movies from each year, but has also seen enough to rank them with conviction (and include a few honorable mentions) is extraordinary to me. I believe he's only a couple of years older than I am, too, which means I have a daunting amount of catching up to do (something that I've known ever since starting to work as a movie critic). To his credit, Gonzalez is also listing "blind spots" from each year (notable films that he hasn't seen), allowing me to grant that he's still human and not some robotic movie-watching machine.

And then there's this blog, pointed out by the Blogger home page, in which a film buff and aspiring filmmaker watches one movie a day for three months. He's come up with an excellent balance of classics, obscure cult movies and new releases, and his reviews are detailed, well-written and well-observed. I've aspired over the last few summers, in the TV off-season, to watching a movie a day, and it's never quite worked out. With all the movies I see to review, I'm watching 3-5 movies a week anyway, but they are all new releases and many are, shall we say, less than notable. I keep filling my Netflix queue with interesting movies that I want to see, but the queue just gets longer and my time gets shorter, and I suppose I'll be on my deathbed with a long list of movies I never got around to watching. Isn't that a pleasant thought?

In other news, there were four people at my first screening for the Vegas Valley Book Festival tonight, and god bless all of them.

2 comments:

Katie said...

I think there's always plenty of time. Nobody's /really/ seen everything, and more movies don't necessarily mean more insight.

I've gone through periods in my life when I watched four movies a day, and periods when I watched almost none at all. That seems perfectly natural to me, and is one reason I probably could never be a professional critic.

Josh said...

Well, of course nobody's seen everything, but seeing more movies does help you to have richer insights, even if it can't substitute for the ability to think critically in the first place.

I think I'd be happy watching four movies a day most days, as long as it didn't interfere with the time I could spend watching TV and reading comic books and surfing the internet and sleeping. That's when I start feeling like there's not enough time.