Tuesday, January 08, 2008

My Netflix queue is empty ... any suggestions?

That's a rather sad state of affairs for someone who watches as many movies as I do, but there is indeed a reason that, for the first time in many years (if ever), there is nothing at all in my queue.

When the fourth season of "The Wire" came out, there was, understandably, very heavy demand for it. Now, as a strategy to make sure I got all the season discs before anything else, I emptied the queue until I had received them all, and since I share "The Wire" with a co-worker who watches them at a slower pace, we're just now getting around to returning them.

I tell you all that to tell you this: I need your help. If any has any suggestions of 2007 (or older, obviously) movies I may have missed that are now out on DVD, I'd love to build the queue up again now that I'm out the TV zone. Any suggestions would be most welcome. Peace out.


Chalupa said...

I can't think of any movies you probably haven't seen right now, but did you ever catch the show Oz? There's six seasons of it on DVD. It was an HBO original. It's about a prison. Good drama and a bit violent at times, but you enjoyed No Country for Old Men so I don't think it would bother you.

Ashok said...

I have tried to name some with no idea whether you would have watched it at all. Forgive me if all the films have already been viewed. Let me know and I will come up with another list.

(1) Man on the Train - French movie which I loved and even with my one viewing, it sunk in to me like anything. A must watch.

(2)"51 Birch Street" - A documentary which makes you look into your life and the family.

(3) "13 Tzameti" - Another French independent movie but an amazing thrilling experience.

(4) "Nine Lives" - A nine part vignette which is subtle in all parts of it but blessed with phenomenal emotions.

I am going to list down here after,

(5)"The Unbearable Lightness of Being" (6)"Tickets" (directed by Abbas Kiarostami, Ken Loach and Ermanno Olmi) (7) I am sure you would have watched "Half Nelson" (8)"Sophie Scholl: The Final Days" (9)Another flick you might have definitely watched but just to make sure "The Station Agent" (10)"The Up Series" - The documentary which radically uses the medium in an amazing way. It started in 1964 and the recent one came 2006. (11) "11'09"01 - September - 11" (Directed by 11 directors) (12) "The Battle of Algiers" (13) "8 1/2" (14) "La Dolce Vita" (15) "Talk to Her" (16) "Infernal Affairs" (Chinese Movie) - All three parts (17) "Running out of time" (Another Chinese movie, highly entertaining) (18) "Waking Life" (the path breaking film by Richard Linklater) (19) "Kinsey" (20) "Das Experiment" (21) "Paradise Now" (22) "Downfall" (German Movie) (23) "The Straight Story"

Do let me know whether I suggested at least one movie you have not seen :-).


Bob said...

I've mentioned it a number of times but if you haven't seen "Snow Cake" yet you absolutely must. Alan Rickman's best performance and maybe Sigourney Weaver's best too. Excellent script by first timer Angela Pell. It played at the Seattle International Film Festival in '06 and finally got released a year later. It came and went with virtually no notice. It's easily the most overlooked movie of the past few years. Excellent film.
(Speaking of Sigourney Weaver what did you think of "The TV Set" anyway? I really loved that movie and I'm hoping it will catch on.)
"Color Me Kubrick" is a hilarious film with John Malkovich (brilliant!) as Alan Conway, a guy who actually told people in London that he was Stanley Kubrick even though he looked nothing like the man. People believed them and he bilked them out of considerable amounts of money. It has some of the best lines of '07 which is saying something.
"This Is England" is a great overlooked release from '07 that came out on DVD recently. Really brutal film but very good.
If you've never seen O'Toole as Henry II, "Becket" and "The Lion in Winter" are both absolutely incredible. A testament to why good ol' Pete is my favorite all-time actor.
"Everything's Gone Green" is a funny film from last year and for once somebody shot a movie where Vancouver plays itself. They also poke a lot of fun at movies and shows that try to make Vancouver look like everywhere else.
"Joyeux Noel" is a Christmas movie but it's great any time of year. It's the story of the WWI Christmas truce in 1914. The event itself has always fascinated me so I'm glad the movie turned out so great.
"Wah-Wah" written and directed by Richard E. Grant is that rare movie about Africa by someone who's actually from there. It's not a politically minded film, but instead based on Grant's own childhood in Swaziland.
Jacques Tati's "Play Time" from the late sixties is one of the most beautifully shot movies I've ever seen. Incredible use of every inch of the frame.
Well I think between Ashok and myself you should have a full queue in no time. :)
I just rented "Talk To Me," "Once," and "Rescue Dawn." I'm catching up on a few I missed earlier in the year. I can't make my year end list until I see those plus a few more.
I also posted my review for "There Will Be Blood." I'm an unabashed PTA fan (as you will certainly be able to tell) and I thought it was really amazing. Have a good one!

Chris said...

Just at a glance, it doesn't look like you've seen Away From Her and I'd recommend that one highly.

Bob said...

Yes, what Chris said!

Reel Fanatic said...

oz is one that I missed, Chalupa, simply because I got on the HBo bandwagon a bit late and missed the beginning of that one, then never caught up .. I'm not sure it's one I could watch in the gym at work, where I've been watching "The Wire," but I'll definitely have to give it a try somehow

Wow ... I knew a call for movies from people who bother to stop by here regularly would bear fruit, but I didn't expect quite the outpouring such as this ... I'm ashamed to say, Ashok, that from your list I've seen almost all in your short list, but none from the opening four, so thanks for the suggestions ... And I did have "Snow Cake" in the queue at your suggestion right about when I cleaned it out to make sure I would get "The Wire," Bob, so it's going right back in there when I have time today to update the queue ... And Chris, I somehow did indeed miss seeing "Away From Her," so that's going right near the top too

Eric said...

Check out Horrors of War

Low budget Indie that I have not yet seen but looks as if it may be interesting.

Nazi Monsters or some such. And looks to be better then your basic Indie Horror / Zombie fest

Kisses and Caroms
Another LB indie that was a dissapointment to me but still watchable and considering they did it in 5 days...
My problems with it are that the writer has a hardon for Keven Smith and he uses too much of his dialog. And not as your basic insert a brief homage but to pull an extra 10 minutes. But it looks pretty good.

I also watched The great Raid this weekend. That was pretty good

Ian said...

Can't remember what you've seen and what you haven't, but Bob's list contains most of my favourite films so if there's anything there you haven't seen I'd add them to your list.

I'm assuming you've seen "Eastern Promises" - a film I saw just last night and really enjoyed.

Mercurie said...

Well, I don't know what movies you haven't seen, so I'll give it a try.

L'Armée des ombres (Army of Shadows): I watched this last year. I think it is Jean-Pierre Melville's best film, even better than Le Samouraï. It's a shame it took so long to get to the States!

Phantom of the Paradise: I call this one of my guilty pleasures, but it did receive its share of good reviews when first released (Richard Schikel of Time gave it one when it was released in 1974). It's a little dated (some of the rock acts aren't so bizarre by these days' standards), but still a lot of fun.

The Shop Around the Corner: I rather suspect you have seen this one. If you haven't, you should. To me it is one of the more underrated romantic comedies. Stewart and Sullivan were in top form in the film. And it's far superior to the Nineties remake, You've Got Mail.

Das Tagebuch des Dr. Mabuse (The Testament of Dr. Mabuse): I rather suspect you've seen this one too. At any rate, besides M I have always thought it was one of Fritz Lang's best movies.

As to TV Shows, I would recommend the short lived Fox TV series Profit (I actually own this one on DVD). The show was co-created and co-produced by David Greenwalt (co-creator of Angel), which gives you an idea of its quality. Personally, I think this show should have run for years instead of the few weeks it did.

Marina said...

Oh man. My queue is 500+ strong. I doubt I can get through that many films in a lifetime!

I second the "Up Series" really fantastic documentary series. "Away from Her" is also great. If you're looking for more Canadian content, a few others to check out include "Waydowntown", "Margaret's Museum" and "Flower & Garnet".

Reel Fanatic said...

Thanks to all for the suggestions, and though I haven't had time yet to compile them all in my workday, I'm happy (and I guess somewhat ashamed) to report that there are at least 20-30 movies I either haven't seen or at least haven't seen for a long time, so it will be fun to update the queue tomorrow morning!

Sachin G. said...

Hey Keith,

I am not sure if you have seen Johnny To's Election & Election 2 but they are worth checking out. Also his Exiled is worth looking at because of two very poetic gun shoot sequences (unlike anything else out there).

Some other foreign titles:
Army of Shadows, Cobra Verde, Le Trou (or the Hole, 1960 French film by Jacques Becker). Also, want to suggest this dead-pan comedy from Uruguay, Whisky, very much in the mould of Jim Jarmusch.

Sachin G. said...

Also, want to second Ashok's recommendation of Tzameti. If you decide to watch it, please do not read anything about the film. I found it a riveting experience to see it without knowing anything. Looking back, if I had read reviews, I would not have cared as much.

Linda said...

Two foreigns I can offer are The Host and Kontroll, very cool films! You've got some awesome suggestions in these comments .... enjoy!

Reel Fanatic said...

Thanks Sachin and Linda ... I have indeed seen The Host already, though, and I have to agree with you that it was a heck of a lot of fun

Aracir said...

hi, just dropping by..

facing windows (Italian), the great raid, mountain patrol (Chinese), Wait 'Til You're Older (Chinese), driving lessons..

Reel Fanatic said...

Thanks, aracir ... I've seen "Driving Lessons," but the other will be new to me

Chalupa said...

Have you seen Battlestar Galactica? You need to start off with the miniseries and I'm pretty sure you'll be hooked. FYI - I'm talking about the re-make, not the original show from the 70s.

Reel Fanatic said...

I am a fan of the new series, Chalupa, but it would indeed be fun to go back and watch the rebirth from the beginning again on DVD

J. Marquis said...

I just saw "Alpha Dog" with Emil Hirsch and Justin Timberlake. True story about a bunch of kids down in SoCal who get involved in a kidnapping. I thought it was a really powerful indictment of a culture gone mad.

Reel Fanatic said...

That's one I just couldn't bring myself to watch in the theater, Mr. Marquis, but I really liked Larry Clark's "Bully" a whole lot, and this one seems to be in the same vein, so with your recommendation I'll definitely give it a try on DVD

Chalupa said...

I saw Alpha Dog in theaters, not my choice, and it actually wasn't that bad. There's some decent performances and Ben Foster is FREAKING AMAZING in it. Complete 180 turnaround from Freaks and Geeks.

Divinity said...

Just got back from internet-sketchy holidays so, off the top of my head (and I know that you have enough already and have probably seen most of these):
Fiorile (Italian)
Living Out Loud
Gods and Monsters
Hard Promises
Last of the Blonde Bombshells
The Big Hit
Better than Chocolate
Nausicaa of the Valley of the Winds
White Dwarf (1995) TV (please let me know if you can actually get this on DVD)

Hope some of these manage to keep you entertained until the strike is over!

P.S. Watched Bottle Rocket for the first time the other night. Liked it better than Zizou but still like Rushmore and Tenenbaums better... :)

Reel Fanatic said...

You did list a few I haven't caught yet, Divinity, and I absolutely adore Nausicaa ... I would have to agree with you that both Rushmore and Tenenbaums are superior to Bottle Rocket, but as first feature film goes, it's certainly a real accomplishment by Mr. Anderson

Shannon the Movie Moxie said...

I love how at least 4 of the suggestions are Canadian :)

Divinity said...

I think I've counted eight. It's amazing how many flicks never make it across the border. We're more than Atom Egoyan and Trailer Park Boys... :)

Divinity said...

Not that there's anything wrong with those dudes.

* (asterisk) said...

Tzameti is great, though I think of it as Georgian rather than French. Please catch it before the US remake!

Oz is fantastic. Did I mention I met Eamonn Walker back in August? What a thoroughly great guy. He really took the time to chat to the wife and me.

I keep my queue down to about 25 titles max, otherwise all sorts of shit drops through the letterbox!

Reel Fanatic said...

Just last night I finally sifted through all the great ideas here, Mr. Asterisk, and Tzameti is now near the top of the list, and I only added 25 or so for now, like you, but put the rest on a list taped to my computer

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