Christmas + looking ahead to 2013




How was your Christmas? Unfortunately there was a great deal of illness in our family this holiday season, but that didn't stop us from enjoying ourselves anyway. I somehow avoided becoming sick (so far). Fingers crossed.


Get any cool gifts? Here's a list of several of mine:

Books:
The Big Screen: The Story of the Movies and What They Did to Us - David Thomson
Cronenberg on Cronenberg
Quiet - Susan Cain
Sight and Sound film magazine subscription

DVDS, all of them random surprises:
Backwoods (2006)
Slumdog Millionaire (2008)
The Black Dahlia (2006)





Looking over my film watching numbers the last two or three years, I regret watching too many average new films. So one of my mini goals for 2013 is to cut back on that, and focus on diversifying film watching, so I watch films from different decades.

I've decided to simplify things, and rank my favorites by IMDb year, 2012, 2011, 2010, 2009 and so forth. I've seen so many from those four years, and some years way back hardly any, so that it's very unbalanced viewing.

I'd love to compile a Top Fives by Year, which other cinephiles are working on. Perhaps going back to 1920. It's a lifelong hobby. I stumbled upon Jandy's and Jeff's. Looking at their ambitious lists puts me to shame (:

I've taken a step in that direction by compiling a blindspot list for 2013 of about 50 classic films I've not watched. If I watch half of them, I'll be happy.


On the music front, I don't have anything definite planned. I feel a similar way as above, that I ought to listen to the old albums a lot more, and diversify.

Here are a few on my list to explore:

60s: The Beatles, Bob Dylan,

70s and 80s: Joni Mitchell, Nick Drake, Fleetwood Mac, Billy Joel, Talking Heads, Peter Gabriel, The Jesus and Mary Chain, New Order, Brian Eno, Genesis, The Smiths, Ultravox, A-ha, Tangerine Dream, Big Star, Paul Simon, Bruce Springsteen, The Pretenders, Vangelis, Daniel Johnston,

90s and 00s: Beck, Joan As Police Woman, Nick Cave, Fiona Apple, The Antlers, The National, Feist, The Radio Dept, Burial, Keane, Corinne Bailey Rae, Tindersticks, PJ Harvey, Air, Thievery Corporation, Eels, Enigma, Blur, Goldfrapp, Moby, Lenny Kravitz, Sinéad O'Connor, Phoenix, Massive Attack, Sneaker Pimps, Camera Obscura, Regina Spektor, Gotye, The Shins, Sufjan Stevens, David Gray, Sebastien Tellier, Cocteau Twins, Slowdive, Lush, The Vaccines,




Which mini goals, in terms of movie watching, or life in general, do you have for 2013? Receive any great gifts from under the tree? I hope you had a nice Christmas, and wish my readers a Happy New Year!

20 comments:

  1. It sounds like you got some good Christmas gifts. I've been hearing a lot about the book Quiet, and I'd like to read it. The film-related books sound great too.

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    1. @Quirky BookandFilmBuff: I usually prefer fixed gifts, so glad I got a few predictable ones ( :
      Looking forward to reading the books. If you ever read or review any of them, be sure to let me know.

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  2. I totally know what you mean about watching too many average new releases! I try to stop myself but they're all just too tempting. On the plus side I have Videodrome to watch from Lovefilm this week which I know you highly recommended.

    As for goals, I want to get my writing published in more places!

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    1. @Pete Turner: Tempting indeed. It's really not our fault, when I go into blockbuster, the shelves are packed with recent movies, probably 90% is new stuff.
      Look forward to your verdict on Videodrome.

      Good luck with getting published, if I were you, I would take up that offer by Dan at top10films.co.uk. Even if you don't get paid, you still get vital exposure, and your writing out there to a wider audience.

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  3. I'm of the same sentiment with regards to watching a lot of average films. Going to do the same as you and make an effort to watch more quality. But sometimes, like Pete said, they're just too tempting!

    Want to broaden my music listening to next year. Hopefully!

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    1. @Jaina: I find it frustrating that classic films don't get the same exposure or hype. New is not necessarily better. It's all about choice. Easy to be manipulated by marketing!

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  4. I like the idea of doing a series of top five lists by year. That would be quite the project, though, and many of the classic years would be woefully lacking for myself.

    For music, I hope you do check out The National. Their first couple albums are hit-and-miss, but everything from Alligator (2005) onward are near flawless, in my opinion. Love the hell out of that band.

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    1. @Eric: it's a daunting task to create a Top Fives by Year, from 1920-2012. The good news is I've already seen a lot, so should be able to put something together already. Then I can focus on blind years, once I've got a list.

      Intend to check The National. Hopefully soon. I'll keep in mind what you said about the first couple of albums.

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  5. I hope your family members are getting better, Chris.Yes, You definitely should watch less new films and more classic ones.

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    1. @David: Thanks, I'm ok, but the family is still recovering. Looking forward to watching lots of classics in 2013!

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  6. Nice gifts you got there. Merry Christmas, Chris. I know what you mean by average new films. Sometimes you just want to keep updated.

    My mini goals, like I posted in my blog, perhaps doing a blogathon and just post out of schedule for now. I think it will make it more go with the flow. I took your suggestion, thanks!

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    1. @Andina: Happy Holidays to you too. Yes, I know exactly what you mean. I need to be stricter with what I watch, or else rotten tomatoes needs to be stricter with what they call worth watching ( :

      You're welcome. Have a great 2013!

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  7. Sorry your family was sick, Chris. Hope you avoid it.

    You got some great gifts. With a few gift cards, I bought a 5-disc film noir set (The Asphalt Jungle, Gun Crazy, Out of the Past, The Set-Up, and Murder, My Sweet), Hobson's Choice, and The Ghost and Mrs. Muir. I've been in the mood for classic movies. :)

    Other than my Blind Spot list, my only movie watching goals are to watch more Best Picture Oscar nominees (still have 139 to see) and see more foreign classics.

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    1. @Josh: No illness so far, I got lucky ( :

      For someone you enjoys classic movies, that's a great gift you bought!

      Best Picture Oscar nominees, that's something I haven't even started on. Maybe down the road I should, in terms of the Top Fives by Year project.

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  8. Hope you had a nice Christmas, Chris. My hubby and I got each other the Jurassic Park trilogy BD, we don't always give each other gifts on Christmas day. As for goals for 2013, well I'd like to catch up to more classic movies, so I started 2013 by watching The Shop Around the Corner :)

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    1. @Ruth: It was a nice Christmas, despite a few people being ill. I haven't seen Jurassic Park in years,I remember really enjoying the first one in a packed cinema. Hope you enjoy the classic films you watch. Have a great 2013!

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  9. My Christmas was a very relaxed one as we celebrated early and didn't do much all day. As for presents I got a nice robe, and a gift certificate I will surely use to buy DVD's.

    No resolutions for the new year yet, but planning to have those ready next week.

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    1. @Nostra: Glad you had a relaxed Christmas, and presents you liked

      I think I may have been too ambitious with my resolutions (:

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  10. Some very ambitious goals you've set yourself here.
    I also have some myself, starting out with increasing my film-watching activity and posting more regularly on my blog, which I wasn't really able to do since I started it.
    I also have to expand my horizons and watch older films, focusing especially on those prior to the 1970s.

    Good luck on the year ahead!

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    1. @niels85: There's plenty to explore prior to the 1970s, I'm in a similar position having watched a lot from 1970-2012. Wishing you a happy 2013!

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