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Jake Gittes

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Everything posted by Jake Gittes

  1. Endgame, obviously. I mean, 10 years passes since Avatar and it can only beat it by what, a hundred bucks? 2.8 billion worldwide is NOT ENOUGH. DISAPPOINTING!
  2. Don't really remember how it started, like with movies themselves it was just there from the first moment I became aware of the concept. I think it was somewhere around 2004 that I saw a little table with the U.S. and Russian weekend top 10s in the newspaper, and it immediately got my attention, I'd check it and compare numbers and drops from week to week. From early 2005 till late 2007, when my home internet was first non-existent and then only accessible for short periods of time via dial-up prepaid cards, I constantly traveled across town to my mother's workplace to brush up on movie news, and spent a lot of time studying then-recent (yearly and all-time charts as they looked then) and current (weekend) box office - the former initially on IMDb and the latter on ComingSoon.net, then everything on BOM which I discovered in late June 2006 on the Superman Returns weekend and obviously had my mind blown by what a goldmine it was - and by "studying" I mean that I'd actually print out pages upon pages of these charts and bring them home with me. Played the derby every week (highest finish was #3, when I got Shrek the Third's OW within 300k), made my own predictions of upcoming movies' runs for fun. I joined BOM forums in March 2010, been talking to some of the people who are still here ever since. Wrote my own box office column in Russian twice a week from January 2011 until September 2017, a nice little freelance gig. Late 2000s and early 2010s was really the peak of my interest. It's been going down more recently, which is probably just as well given the double whammy of BOM dying and COVID hitting, although individual runs like Black Panther, Greatest Showman, John Wick 3, Knives Out or Parasite were still obviously impressive to track. But movies I'm interested in have less and less overlap with what gets mass-marketed theatrically in our ever-more flattened content-ified landscape, I think Jurassic World was the first record-breaker which I had absolutely no strong feelings towards on any level which I'd have previously thought unimaginable. As a teenager I'd just cheer everything on and only be disappointed when e.g. something like Zodiac bombed. These days what gets me to cheer is just seeing, like, Uncut Gems cross 50m domestic. And who knows if we'll ever even see something like that again.
  3. Putin is not massively beloved. He's been able to hold on to power by building up a cult of personality, surrounding himself with flunkies who make it look like the machine is running smoothly and, yes, maintaining popularity among the populace by pushing "stability" (it can't be overstated how much that word still means to those who were alive to see the hellish economic turmoil of the '90s) and socially conservative policies and occasional shows of power (like Crimea) that distract people from the real problems. But it's not like those problems are going anywhere. Tons of people continue to live below the poverty line, corruption is rampant (and consistently exposed by the opposition and independent media), protests against the abuse of power are more and more frequent, and Putin's failure to be a unifying/inspiring figure in the times of corona caused his approval rating to go below 60%, which is where it hovers now. He and his government have been on shaky ground for a while now.
  4. It may not have a murder mystery but be sure to check out the Todd Haynes miniseries too sometime, it's an excellent work.
  5. Pixar knows what the people want. 500m DOM baby let's go
  6. He's already warned the Emmys he'll go in super rage mode if it doesn't.
  7. 13 year old Timmy got all horned up watching those animated legs.
  8. throw Election in your watchlist if you haven't yet
  9. Woman in the Dunes (1964) - 8/10. First 90 minutes better than the last 60, with the central relationship more interesting and the narrative still focused on tension rather than resignation, although the way the story ruthlessly snaps shut in the final moments still gives me chills days later. Might love it more on revisit when I know from the start where it's going. Allegory fundamentally pretty perfect, some stunning imagery and music. *Only Angels Have Wings (1939) - 10/10. Fourth complete viewing, not counting all those times I made myself bawl by just watching the first 40 minutes (ending on the piano scene) and that time I spent weeks making Russian subtitles for it, which meant going through every dialogue scene multiple times. "Things are happening awful fast around here," is the key line, and you could say certain things happen too fast, but on the upside there's not a flagging second in the whole two hours and this is such a fully realized, immersive and immediate world it's still exhilarating to be in even when you know every moment by heart. Possibly the best screenplay ever written. *McCabe & Mrs. Miller (1971) - 8/10. One of those films I feel like I should love more than I do, and this time I warmed up more to its loose-limbed approach (some miraculous moments in the interplay among the supporting cast), on the other hand its genre subversion and anti-capitalist messaging are still overdetermined for my taste (though not "wrong", ofc) and, as in Don't Look Now, it's kind of a shame Julie Christie becomes increasingly sidelined in the second half after making such a great impression in the first. The cinematography may be the most beautiful I've ever seen. *Avalon (1990) - 9/10. A slight downgrade from the perfect 10, one of those cases where you're so awestruck by what a film is doing on first viewing that you quickly stop noticing the seams, which stand out more on revisit. Some overly cute scenes and dialogue that forcefully underlines things instead of just letting them breathe, but still a mostly phenomenal film about Time consuming lives with all their dreams, histories, joys and miseries. One of the most neglected American movies of the past 30 years. Eurovision Song Contest: The Story of Fire Saga (2020) - 6/10. Inexcusably long, structureless grab-bag of mostly pointlessly manufactured conflicts and overmilked jokes that range from pretty funny to DOA, juuuuuuuust barely saved by its sincerity (there are times when it connects, which is more than can be said for e.g. the craven synthetic bullshit of Yesterday), the occasional well-done comic and/or musical moment (esp. the climactic number) and Stevens and McAdams' performances.
  10. Well that's the best order these last three films could have been ranked in and I didn't actually expect it to happen, so well done.
  11. The mod establishment can't handle the people's vote I mean for real, though? Whose humorless ass did this?
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