As December rolls in, I’ve been spending some time reflecting. There’s a lot on my mind, but for now, here’s the media I’ve been experiencing over November.
Killers of the Flower Moon
What an incredible artistic achievement. Gets to the heart of America’s original sins in the same way that There Will Be Blood does. You don’t feel the runtime.
20 Million Miles to Earth
Science fiction creature feature, where of course Ray Harryhousen’s stop motion monster effects take center stage. The plot is pretty basic, late 50s B-movie stuff, but it looks great.
The Rats Are Coming! The Werewolves Are Here!
Amazing title, very weird movie. The first film I’ve seen by Andy Milligan, seemingly a character himself, the movie is this grunge-y, threadbare, almost documentary feeling chamber piece about a haunted family. Only for the heads.
No Hard Feelings
It’s a paint-by-numbers plotted rom com, but it’s so fun. There’s genuinely funny moments, and Jennifer Lawrence is effortlessly charismatic. I miss the days when this would be in competition with several other romantic comedies this year, but I’ll take it!
Death Race 2000
A deliciously unhinged movie. Want to see a cartoonish satire where racers get points for driving over people, and also the 70s? Your wish is granted. Peak Roger Coreman.
Wet Hot American Summer
Re-watched this with some folks who had never seen it. Still perfection.
Next Goal Wins
This one is alright. I loved the setting, and getting a bit of a peak into the culture of American Soma, but the plot is very formulaic and safe, and the expected character turns didn’t feel earned. That being said, there were plenty of fun moments, and despite the predicability, I found myself tearing up. Its fine!
Friday the 13th
I had planned to see this before Halloween, but only got around to it at the end of November. I had never seen a single Friday the 13th movie, and despite their reputation as Halloween rip offs, I felt it a cultural deficit growing up in New Jersey.
So, I saw it! And, it was a movie. It really is a Halloween rip off, but without any of the tension or attention to detail or music or scares. So many movies have copied or parodied the “horny teenagers get murdered” trope, that its kind of quaint to go back to when this was only the second film to do so (I know I know, I’m sure there were others, don’t at me).
It’s not a great movie, but I guess I’ll keep watching them, see how the series goes.
I don’t watch too many TV shows, but did catch a few episodes of The Critic my friend Jon showed me. I had never seen it, and not everything ages well, but damn, so much funny.
This has been a slow month for reading for me. Hope to pick up the pace in December.
The Haunting of Hill House by Shirley Jackson
So tense, so mean, so weird, so good.
Mexican Gothic by Silvia Moreno-Garcia
Kind of apiece with The Haunting of Hill House, but very much its own thing. I haven’t finished it yet, but so far it’s been riveting, with so much life to the characters, and effortless stylistic changes between the grounded real and the psychedelic terror.
I’m planning on making these media diet posts monthly, so I’ll write about this one again next month when I finish it.
Australia Stops by C.O.F.F.I.N
I was pretty much been listening to this one non-stop in November, after hearing them perform live on The Best Show. Raucous hard rock with a ton of energy. With the Australian accent and growl-shout delivery, I understand maybe one in ten words. It’s incredible.
Car Wheels on a Gravel Road by Lucinda Williams
I’ve heard of Lucinda Williams for a long time, but never consciously listened to her before. After hearing this album discussed on The Best Show, I decided to give it a spin. It’s a really beautiful record, and I’ll need to spend more time with it to really let it sink in.
It Takes A Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back by Public Enemy
Listened to this again, and yeah, still amazing.
Bachelor No. 2 or, the Last Remains of the Dodo by Aimee Mann
Went back to this album and boy does it hit on every level for me. The raw emotional power is only matched by the timeless songwriting, and a performance for the books. This is a perfect record.
Dopesmoker by Sleep
Finally listened to this early 90s doom metal classic all the way through. Strange, hypnotic, heavy. It’s a trip, man.