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Dec 10, 2006

How many films have I seen this year?!

By my count, I have seen 42 films in theaters this year. Almost one a week, though mysteriously, in looking at a list of the films released this year, my wife and I saw none that were released in January or February. While it is the case that the studios generally put out their "leftovers" in these months (specifically February and August), I'm still shocked by this fact. Perhaps we were just finishing off the 2005 films we had yet to see in the first two months of 2006. That, or we have really good taste, I suppose. For evidence of this, look again at the movies that were released in January and February. Not a ton of quality there.

Here are the movies we have seen, in order by release month:

V for Vendetta, Dave Chappelle's Block Party, Thank You for Smoking, Brick, Art School Confidential, Friends with Money, RV, X-Men: The Last Stand, An Inconvenient Truth, The DaVinci Code, The Devil Wears Prada, Superman Returns, The Omen, Nacho Libre, Mission: Impossible III, Down in the Valley, Little Miss Sunshine, A Scanner Darkly, Miami Vice, Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest, Scoop, Lady in the Water, The Illusionist, Talledaga Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby, Pulse, The Science of Sleep, The Last Kiss, The Departed, Flags of Our Fathers, The Last King of Scotland, The Prestige, Marie-Antoinette, Man of the Year, Stranger Than Fiction, Borat (2), The Fountain, Babel, For Your Consideration, Bobby, Casino Royale, Let's Go To Prison, Blood Diamond

(The "(2)" for Borat is because I saw it twice in the theater.)

I'll wait for my top 10 until the year is actually over, but I have some awards to hand out based on what I've seen so far:

Biggest Letdown: The Prestige
Throw together the director of Memento and Batman Begins, with a cast that includes such names as Bale, Jackman, Caine and Johansson, and what do you get? Not much apparently. See The Illusionist instead.

Biggest Surprise (negative edition): The Last Kiss
The Prestige was a letdown because I expected it to be good. The surprise here is that The Last Kiss was just so bad. I didn't go in expecting Oscar to come calling, or for Braff to even come close to replicating the "magic" of Garden State, but Kiss was dreadful - probably the worst film I saw in a theater this year.

Biggest Surprise (positive edition): Dave Chappelle's Block Party
Kind of the opposite of The Last Kiss. This wasn't something that I thought would be bad that turned out to be good, but something that I thought would be ok that turned out to be excellent. Michel Gondry is quickly earning "must see" status (along with The Science of Sleep, he directed two of the best films of the year) and, despite it's being filmed prior to Chappelle's "trip," this movie earned him some good press at a good time. Oh, and the music in the film is TREE-mendous (Kanye West, Common, Fugees, Erykah Badu, Mos Def, Talib Kweli, etc, etc).

More to come...

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