A decade is an arbitrary period to reflect on. The 2010s contain several important historical events and self-contained eras and grouping films before and after those events together for comparison is an insane activity and one that I love to do and watch others do.
So in the spirit of looking back at ten years of movies and of delivering some easy musings for Boxing Day, here are ten stray thoughts on films 2010-present that I need to get off my chest and on the official record without waiting for any better context than all films in that era are open for discussion. I encourage you to add your own in the comments below.
Cave of Forgotten Dreams – This was the first Blu-Ray I rented for my new HD screen, only to learn from Herzog a few minutes in that the cave’s opening was too small to fit their HD cameras in.
Coherence – In addition to just being a great sci-fi story, bringing up Coherence (or In a World) early in the decade was a covert way of saying you’d discovered Amazon Prime streaming video.
Wiener-Dog – Speaking of, remember that glorious time Amazon gave Todd Solondz money and he turned in a movie with a sixty-second tracking shot of dog diarrhea? Sometimes that’s where subscribing to auteur theory gets you.
Moneyball – The strangest part of this film is how the fact that Billy Beane returned to the A’s is treated like an inconvenient coda to the ending of the movie even though that seems like a pretty dramatically satisfying extra twist.
Easy A – A strange one to discuss here because in my head this movie came out about 1 million years ago. How many square feet do you think Emma Stone owns now compared to when this movie was released?
The King’s Speech – I like my friend’s description of the conflict – What can one of the most powerful men in the world with all the resources of his industrialized nation do against a minor personal impediment? – because it can be interpreted as a thought-provoking reversal or a sarcastic burn depending on your evaluation of the film.
Escape from Tomorrow – Pretty sure this caused a tense day or so at Disney HQ until somebody got a look at the film and reported back there was no need to worry.
After Earth – Here’s how forgettable this movie was: a friend of mine and I were looking for a movie to see on a free evening and settled on Now You See Me, a movie we thought forgettable until we realized we chose it over the new M. Night Shyamalan / Will Smith picture because we forgot it was an option between reading the showtimes and choosing a movie. Our brains pre-forgot the movie in an effort to protect us.
Shutter Island – This movie would have blown everyone’s mind and influenced popular film for the next seven years had it come out twelve years earlier. Don’t get me wrong, it’s a well-made film and I wouldn’t change a frame. But imagine if its twist had been foisted on the world before the twist-happy early aughts.
I’m Still Here / You Were Never Really Here – A joke about Joaquin Phoenix being the lead in both these movies is so obvious, yet its perfect formulation remains elusive.