Watched, Read, Reviewed: November 2022

Oops. Guess I better post this before the end of the year. And I’ll try to finish the year by posting what I watched in December but probably gonna need a break after that. 🙂

MOVIES WATCHED IN NOVEMBER (ranked best to worst):

Drifting Home – Really enjoyed this. It’s a pretty typical anime with young characters who can be overly dramatic but I really liked the creative story & themes of memory, loss, and friendship. Starts out a little slow but really gets going once they start “drifting” away and there was some lovely animation. One of my favorite 2022 releases that I’ve seen. – 7.5/10

Anomalisa – I appreciate most of Charlie Kaufman’s work but can’t say I’ve ever loved any of it. Anomalisa really worked for me, though. I’m not sure why. Think I could relate to the film’s main character in some ways & I liked Lisa (am also a fan of Jennifer Jason Leigh so that helped too). Am always happy to see a film that feels unique & I really liked the story. Glad I finally gave this one a chance. 

Oh – I also liked seeing “Starburns Industries” as the production company which made me go “Ha! Like Star-Burns in Community!” then finding out later that was actually the case as it was co-founded by Community creator Dan Harmon & Star-Burns himself Dino Stamatopoulos. So, hey – I like the Community link because that show rules. – 8/10

Glengarry Glen Ross – ACTORS ACTING.

I didn’t know just how many big names were in this but, when I looked it up, it was seeing Jack Lemmon’s name that made me hit the Play button. Wow, he was great. Everyone in this was clearly trying for an Oscar nomination so I was very surprised to see that only Al Pacino was nominated just for being, well, Al Pacino yet again. They all deserve recognition for these roles but I thought Lemmon, Baldwin & Pacino (even though he’s just being Pacino) especially stood out. 

If you like plays & intense ACTING from some all-time great actors, this is the film for you. It’s not really the type of film for me & not one I’d rewatch but I’ve rated it highly for the performances & the script & for Jack Lemmon. Well worth watching just to see these guys in action. – 7.5/10

Relic – This was good. Reminded me a lot of another recent(ish) Australian horror The Babadook, which I absolutely loved & was also a very clever allegory (or is it a metaphor?! I always confuse those!). This is the type of “horror” I like. Found it quite heartbreaking. Need more horror films like this one. – 7/10

My Summer Of Love – Enjoyed this English countryside drama with strong performances from Natalie Press as a working class girl who falls for rich girl Emily Blunt in her debut film role (and naked). Paddy Considine is also good as the born-again Christian brother of Press. Liked the relationship & how the film ended. From the director of Cold War. Check it out on BBC iPlayer. – 7/10

Weird: The Al Yankovic Story – This was fun. Liked that it was a parody of a biography, which is the only thing that would make sense for a Weird Al movie. Especially liked the stuff with Madonna & some fun cameos. It’s not as good as his music videos, though, and certainly not in the same league as something like This Is Spinal Tap. But certainly worth a watch for Weird Al fans. – 6.5/10

My Policeman – This was fine. I liked the story (I always love years of yearning) but the complete lack of chemistry between all the characters meant that the story didn’t have the emotional impact that I’m sure it probably had in the book. Everyone mentions Harry Styles but I was equally unimpressed with most of the performances except for maybe David Dawson’s. An okay film but may have been better with different leads. – 6.5/10

The Wonder – Good atmosphere & could have used a lot more of the eerie music which I quite liked. Not gonna lie, though: “Florence Pugh” & “Period Drama” are two things that aren’t going to get me excited about watching a movie. Not my type of thing at all but this was an intriguing story, the young girl was good, and I liked the conclusion. Hated how they started & finished the film, though. Totally threw me out of the movie. – 6.5/10

See How They Run – This movie, as most 2022 streaming releases, was okay. But that’s the problem… I’m so bored with okay movies. At least the ones I really hate tend to be more memorable. I thought Sam Rockwell & Saoirse Ronan worked really well together, though, which made this somewhat dull mystery far more watchable than it would have been without them. There’s some fun humor too. Certainly not a bad film but I know I’ll forget it even exists in a year. – 6.5/10

Disenchanted – Wow, this was terrible. I shouldn’t “review” it as I fell asleep & missed a big chunk in the middle but I refuse to rewatch it. I saw enough to know I don’t want it to ruin the fun & original first film so I’ll pretend it doesn’t exist just like I do with the Disney live-action remakes. Still love Amy Adams, though. She’s still lovely & did what she could with this absolute mess. – 5/10

Movies Rewatched In November:

Father Of The Bride – Watched this with the family. Been many years since I last saw this one. I’d say it’s actually held up better than some of the early ‘90s rom-coms. We could use more good father/daughter family films. This is sweet without being overly saccharine. The only annoying bit was when she freaked out over a blender. What?! I don’t remember us being offended by trivial things back in 1991. Also… Steve Martin’s family are meant to be “middle class” compared to the fiancé’s family but live in a big gorgeous house in a lovely neighborhood and can afford a ridiculously expensive wedding. Cry me a river! My daughter loved Martin Short, though. Think she’s a fan since seeing Martin & Short together in Only Murders In The Building. His character is fun & does threaten to steal the whole show in this film. – 7/10

Shorts Watched In November:

Zen – Grogu & Dust BunniesStudio Ghibli & Grogu?! Two of my favorite things ever?!? My heart just about exploded when I watched this. Now if they could add in Totoro, R2-D2, WALL-E & Snoopy I’d need no new media to ever be made again. Loved this. So adorable & peaceful. And Ludwig Göransson‘s score is brilliant (as always). Works beautifully with the Ghibli style.

The Guardians Of The Galaxy Holiday Special – This was…. Not great. Very cheesy. But did like seeing more of Drax & Mantis together.

Minions & More – Yeah, I like the minions. I don’t care. I think they’re funny.

The Wonderful Autumn Of Mickey Mouse – Bit of an odd one… Wasn’t really a fan. Give me old school Mickey Mouse.

Zootopia Shorts – Meh. Not big on the movie but these shorts were fine (except that dumb Real Housewives one because god I can’t stand that type of shit…)

BOOKS, TV, MUSIC, MISCELLANEOUS IN NOVEMBER

Been watching quite a bit of TV. Which is fine but it’s cutting into movie-time. 🙂

TV SHOWS WATCHED

The White Lotus: S2 E1-5 – Really liked the first series & feel the same about this one. Good characters & I always like a murder mystery where you don’t know who ends up being the victim. But, mainly, it’s all about Jennifer Coolidge. Love her. Best thing about The White Lotus.

Wednesday: S1 E1 – Think we’d only seen one episode in November but now seen through episode 5. Enjoying the story and the characters are growing on me. Teen daughter seems to love it so that makes me happy.

Andor: S1 E9-12 – Ended up thinking this was a really good series overall after a few episodes I wasn’t feeling so much. All the prison stuff & the funeral were fantastic. A very strong couple of episodes at the end of this series.

House Of The Dragon: S1 E8-10 – Was gonna write more about this now I’m finished but can’t be arsed. 🙂 It’s fine but definitely inferior to Game Of Thrones. Much better character development in Thrones. I’ll again say I far preferred the younger Rhaenyra. And the incest is just fucking nuts in this one. Game Of Thrones was bad enough with that. Ew.

Also been rewatching the pilots of various old ’70s & ’80s shows on YouTube for the nostalgia. Never see this stuff re-run in the U.K. Very much missing the sitcoms of my youth. Really enjoyed rewatching the pilots of It’s Your Move, The Facts Of Life, Benson & Taxi.

BOOKS READ

Gwendy’s Final Task by Stephen King & Richard Chizmar – Ended up really enjoying this trilogy (review of first book here and second book here). It’s one of those made much better by turning the story into a trilogy & really getting to know the character of Gwendy. I liked how they went all out in the final book. I mean, she manages to get herself up into space in order to try to finally rid the planet of the dangerous button box. That could’ve turned out ridiculous but I thought it worked well & I always love a story set in space. Also enjoyed King having fun with the rich asshole character who is SO obviously modelled on Tr*mp. – 3.5/5

BLOG PLANS FOR THE COMING MONTH

Gonna try to catch up on watching as many 2022 films as I can before the year ends. Man, 2022 has been another shit year for movies! Massively disappointing. As far as what’s made it to streaming, at least. Hoping some of what I missed in cinemas was good.

As I adored Ghibli Grogu & Ludwig Göransson‘s score, I need to end with a clip of that music:

My Top Thirty TV Shows (30-21)

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In recent years, I’ve found that I have less & less time to devote to watching TV shows. Plus, half the time I start watching a new show, it’s cancelled after one season & I’m pissed off at having wasted my time. So when I have any spare time these days, I watch a movie instead and, of course, that’s what 90% of this blog is all about anyway. But I LOVED TV as a kid! And I still make time for the occasional show (The Walking Dead & The Good Wife are the main two that I currently watch). So many movie bloggers have been posting about TV shows lately and I feel really left out as I don’t watch them (Game Of Thrones being the main one. I’ll make the time someday, people!). So I figured I’d do a top ten of my all-time favorite TV shows. Well, it turns out that I wasn’t able to narrow it down to only ten. So…

Here, counting down, are 30-21 of My All-Time Top Thirty TV Shows. (Stay tuned for 20-11 being posted on Wednesday and 10-1 on Friday, by which point you’ll be sick of me). 🙂

30. Highlander

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I liked it! Duncan was hot (even though the ponytail was kind of weird). And you have to admit the show was better than all but the first movie…

29. Fawlty Towers

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My first introduction to a British TV show after moving to the UK (Monty Python doesn’t count – all Americans have seen that). It was close between including this one or Only Fools & Horses. Both are great but I think this one is slightly better.

28. The Wonder Years

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I think a very big part of the reason I liked this was that it made me think of Stand By Me, one of my favorite movies ever. And I loved the time period in which it was set. Plus the music was great!

27. The X-Files

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I couldn’t WAIT to see this every week. But I have to admit I got bored with the overall “alien abduction” storyline and far preferred the individual stories about other weird & wonderful shit.

26. My Name Is Earl

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This. Show. Is. Freaking. Hilarious. I don’t find many things all that funny and this was the first “sitcom” I’d liked in YEARS. I miss good sitcoms. Plus they’re short – I have time for that!

25. Quantum Leap

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This show had the BEST concept! Well executed as well. Very original. And I love shows with such different stories each week. Such a fun watch.

24. Growing Pains

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Leave me alone. Being the age I am, I’d be a complete liar if I didn’t include this. Hehehe… “Boner”…

23. The Facts Of Life

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Again, it’s my age talking but I LOVED this show! I wanted to BE Jo. Jo was cool.

22. Monty Python’s Flying Circus

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So many classic skits (and many bad ones, just like with SNL). But the good ones are brilliant, making us forget all the rest.

21. Saturday Night Live

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Since moving to the UK over a decade ago, I no longer see this as it isn’t shown here. We all have our favorite SNL years, mostly according to our age. My favorite years were, naturally, the ones that brought us WAYNE’S WORLD and two of my all-time favorite characters. Like with Monty Python above, SNL has made some utter shite over the years but the classic skits more than make up for those not-so-funny ones.

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**As I said above, I’ll be posting 20-11 on Wednesday and 10-1 on Friday. As usual, I’ll have IMDB Top 250 Guest Reviews on Tuesday & Thursday. One is of a Hitchcock classic & one is the first movie that’s part of a beloved trilogy. The same blogger has reviewed all three, which I’ll post over the next three weeks. This IMDB thing has been so much fun – thanks again to everyone who has contributed! 🙂