Rick & Morty Season 6 – This was the only show I was watching in the autumn.
Free Guy (13 11 22) – Fun. Sweet rom com. Great cast. Mindless entertainment
Knives Out: Glass Onion – Very fun! I thought Janelle Monae was great in this and I continue to adore Daniel Craig’s Blanc character. I am so happy that this series is living up to the first film.
My Kitchen Rules AU – I was actually really pleased by the winners.
Only Murders in the Building season 1 & 2 – Funny. We loved this. Growing up I remember watching a lot of Steve Martin movies and his comedy style is silly and often wholesome. A bit predictable for me as someone who reads mystery but the comedy is top notch. I also like the chemistry between the three leads.
Julia Season 1 (13 01 23)- Started on plane and finished at home. Very great plane watching as it has some of my favourite things: food, mid-century decor and fashion, female characters, and a great cast! Uplifting and sweet. Also as someone who loves Frasier, the many scenes between Bebe Neuwith with and David Hyde Pearce feels like a spiritual successor to Frasier. The show’s writing is not perfect and the artistic license taken with the lives of real people and the social issues is clunky. However, relationships and acting and design are one point.
“Emma” (2020) – This was okay. The Romola Garai 2006 mini series is still the best. I think Anna Taylor Joy can act but her and the script did not make her Emma sympathetic enough at the start. Emma is very annoying in the book but you still get a sense of how much she loves the people around her. This one showed her as a tad too manipulative of Harriet. Everyone seemed more miserable and they played it laughs which I did not find as funny. There was too much crying in the second half. I liked the supporting actors like Bill Nighy and Miranda Hart. The movie did look good with its costumes, settings, and decor.
“Call my Agent! / Dix Pour Cent” Season 4 – I really like this show and I’m glad I caught up. My French is so rusty now! In any case, this was was suppose to be the final season and there seemed to be great character development with all the characters. We am cancelling Netflix for awhile but maybe I’ll get it back for this in the future.
“Running Man” (primarily 2010-2013) – I have watched a couple of eps of this show before and it’s unavoidable if you know East or South East Asia media. I never really got into it until now. The Yoon Eun Hye teasing was one of the reasons I wanted to try the earlier episodes. I’ve seen a number of episodes in the last couple weeks. I’m still in the sub 200 ep range. I will not watch everything and there are resources to tell me the best eps thankfully. It’s been a fun journey.
I watched everything in May and June except the end of Stranger Things. I did not watch much in July.
Shiva Baby (24 05 2022) – I saw a short scene from this many months ago on Youtube and didn’t know the name of the film. I saw it again on a film analysis video and I decided to watch some clips of it on YouTube before watching the film. I really enjoyed how tight the script was and how it was shot. You could tell a lot of work was put into it and the tone of the movie was chaotic and tense. The movie got a lot of pathos from everyone in a short time. I was not surprised that was it from a short film and am glad the director-writer was able to make it a feature.
“Stranger Things” Season 4 Volume I – After the first two eps, I spoiled myself and basically watched it in the background. I am not a fan of horror but I continue to watch this show. Also, some of these actors are good. The hopper and jock storyline were so weak that I fast forwarded to them.
“You” Season 3 – The appeal of this show for me is about 75% Penn Badgley and the other 25% being the writing and the location shooting. Everyone is so hard to like on this show but it’s played for dark comedy. I think I like this season more than the second one. I like that show changes locations every season and the next one is already shooting in London should be fun.
“Stranger Things” Volume II – Overall still fun. It was not a bad season. Too gory and violent at times though.
Back in the early years of this blog – about 20 years ago – I would track all the movies I watched.
In the last couple years, I cut down on a lot of TV and film watching because I was looking at too many screens during my work day and I wanted time for my other hobbies.
Now that I am living mostly alone (temporarily) and knitting more, tv and film are back on my radar. I also have a big backlog of TV and films.
I also want to watch more French language things because I have not been using French at all in the last 5 years. Ten years ago, I even worked briefly in French so I’d like to keep it up.
Logan Lucky (22 03 2022) – Long overdue to watch this film which features two actors from my List of favourites. Hint: Channing Tatum is not one of them even though I like him fine. I have always liked Steven Soderbergh as a director. I love his fast shots and angles. Funny and entertaining movie. I felt really immersed in the world. It’s really nice watching an original, smaller budget film with great actors and not overly fancy CGI or effects. This movie is not in any cheap looking because of the script and the crew though. Really good.
Spider-man No way home – I wish I had seen this in theatres. Like many people of my generation, I saw the Tobey Maguire Spider-man movies in cinema and liked them. Well, the first 2 any way. I was spoiled for awhile going into this newest edition. I am a casual Marvel fan and do not watch every Marvel movie or TV show but there are definitely some characters and aspects to the movies which I like. I honestly think they captured some of the best of the first time Spider-Man franchises (including their leads) and the new Marvel ones. The ending is more bittersweet than most Marvel movies which I appreciated.
I planned to watch more things in April, but other things got in the way.
I was been watching a lot of shows or movies this past autumn. November and December did bring more some better shows.
Hobbs & Shaw – I have not seen a Fast & Furious movie in a long time, but we both enjoyed the trailer of this movie way back in the spring. It was fun. I spent the whole time making candied peel for my stollen. It was the perfect movie to bake or cook to.
Murder on the Orient Express – See review here.
Knives Out – Mystery whodunnit kind of holiday flick. Loved this. Everyone did a great job and I look forward to seeing more Benoit Blanc mysteries. I really hope this means the return of more mysteries in theatres and original franchises.
“Midnight Diner” Season 2 – This is such a cozy TV show if you like Japanese shows. I found a couple of the episodes in the season didn’t work as well as Season 1 but I still love this show overall. It has a real ambiance and vibe similar to some sitcoms, but quieter in the Japanese style.
“The Crown” Season 3 – I did find the writing and storylines in Season 3 less engaging than the first two seasons. There was a lack of character development on the Queen. I did not like the “woe is me” narrative that Charles had. Acting is still very good. My favourite episode was probably “Bubbikins” and “Aberfan”.
“Masterchef The Professionals” Series 11 – This is one of my favourite shows. Pure comfort in watching professionals competing without drama.
“The Mandalorian” Season 1 – One of my favourite new shows in the year. “Baby Yoda” (or Not Yoda) is adorable. I love the body language acting by Pascal and the doubles. The writing and episodic nature are tight. Most of all, the music is some of the best TV soundtracks I’ve heard in awhile.
One of the best mysteries ever written. I thought I read this book but then I checked GoodReads for the date and this blog. I have read a lot less of Christie than I thought. It feels as if I’ve read more because I’ve watched several adaptations to her books including this one. I watched at least one version.
As a result, I was spoiled to the big twist. I had forgotten the finer details which includes all the character development Christie imbued. It’s a very well written and fun mystery. It took me a few days due to the holidays. It was fun and interesting. I was engrossed when I picked it up and I loved the setting.
My novel was a vintage one from the 1970s which used the North American title “Murder in the Calais Coach”.
Read December 23-27, 2019
Murder on the Orient Express (2017)
This is the recent adaptation from Kenneth Branagh. The novel was fresh from my mind so I was critically aware of the changes.
I did not mind Branagh’s Poirot. The cast had some gems but it feels like a lot of them were under-utilized. I liked Daisy Ridley and Michelle Pfeffier but I am biased towards them. The train was gorgeous and I loved the set design. The movie was good to look at and the screenplay kept most of the structure of the novel.
Now for the negatives. There were a number of changes to the characters’ backstories. The plot added more action and violence. These changes were sensationalist. There is a theme of racism in the movie which is not as heavily featured in the novel. The movie includes a non-white character which does not exist and a very racist Professor. I do not know if this was to add more diversity for movie audiences. It felt unnecessary just like the fact they made two of the characters substance abusers. Some of the changes felt strange and melodramatic. I was not a fan of but I guess this is what Hollywood wants.
It’s been many years since I’ve seen it but the David Suichet Poirot version was a better adaptation to the novel.
I will watch the next one after it comes out and after I read Death on the Nile. I like whodunit movies on the whole so I welcome the trend for movies.
Watched August 28, 2019.
Avengers: Endgame (04-05 08 2019) – I was thoroughly spoiled, but I haven’t been able to watch it since the release. It was a bit long and it had a bit too much fan service, but it was good for the most part. I think the endings fit for most of the characters except I was not satisfied with two of the most important ones. Oh well. I have my favourites from this series and will follow them through.
“Jack Ryan” Season 1 – I watched most of these episodes as my partner got a Prime trial. We both like John Krasinski and it was a nice to see Abbie Cornish.
“What We Do in the Shadows” Season 1 – Funny. Nadja is my favourite. There is some good character work as well in this for a an unconventional comedy. I really enjoyed and am looking forward to the next series. Lately, Taika Waititi can’t do wrong.
Plot, characters, perfect sitcom
Intimate Strangers (06 07 2019) – Watched on a flight to South Korea. This is the Korean version of the Italian Perfect Strangers. I haven’t see the Italian version but I saw the French one a couple months ago. This was much better than the French one as they were able to walk the line with the black comedy better. It also felt a bit more honest and I really liked the cast. The ending about everyone having three lives: public, private, and secret was interesting and drove the message better.
Captain Marvel (06 07 2019) – Fun! I really liked Larson in this role. She possesses both charm, humour and kick ass strength. Everyone in the cast were great too. I really look forward to seeing more of Captain Marvel and she may become my favourite Avenger.
The LEGO Movie 2 (11 07 2019) – Another easy flight movie. Not as good as the first one, but I still like the world building. I no longer find Pratt as funny or endearing as when the first movie came out, but it was fun here.
Aquaman (11 07 2019) – This was not bad. I think everyone involved did a decent job. I found the plotting convoluted and overwrought. While I think Momoa generally has chemistry with most people, him and Heard (who is beautiful) was moderate, but not stellar. I’d watch a sequel if the reviews for it are decent.
Cruise of the Gods ( 27 07 2019) – My partner the Steve Coogan fan made me watch this but it was not bad. It’s a satire about celebrity cruises and fandoms. I find Brydon’s character too much of a jerk to be believable but this is a comedy after all. James Corden as sweet little Russell makes me wish we saw him in those kind of subtle roles again.
Always Be my Maybe (01 06 2019) – Very cute and funny. I liked a lot of the jokes and could relate to a lot of the character touches. Not all the jokes landed or the pacing at times, but it worked for me. I rewatched the Keanu Reeves intro scene a few times.
Madame de / The earrings of Madame de (07 06 2019) – Well shot with lovely visuals. An old French classic with a very romantic plot of affairs. It’s over the top romance that works because of Max Ophüls’s direction. It’s been awhile since I watched a black and white film, but this one reminded me of the lighting and shots that were so innovative back then. I enjoyed it and felt invested by the end. I watched it again with film critic commentary too.
Les Grandes Chaleurs / Heatwave (12 06 2019) – A Quebec film from 2009 which I got for Francois Arnaud from The Borgias a few years ago. This film is set in the Quebec City region which i visited in May again so I understood the area. It was a cute film but was a bit slow in parts.
La Pianiste / The Piano Teacher (12 06 2019) – This is one of those French films where there is a very repressed female protagonist. Erica is an unlikeable character with lots of issues. This is not an enjoyable film to watch but the direction and two leads did a good job.
Spider-man Far From Home (29 06 2019) – Watched this 3D abroad where it was not dubbed but maybe even slightly censored. I find 3D rather useless and it didn’t add to this film much. Watching with a non-english speaking audience was interesting as they didn’t find some things as funny but they found others hilarious. I don’t think this movie was as good as the first Marvel Spider-Man and it was predictable and too jokey in parts. I do like the main cast.
Hail Caesar! (16 04 2019) – I remember seeing the trailer a couple years ago and looking forward to it but the reviews were not great so I put it off. The pacing in this movie is odd. It’s lacklustre and often times feels like a bunch of random scenes rather than a cohesive movie. I didn’t hate the movie but it did drag for the most of it. Good points is that every scene looks great. I love this era in the film and you can tell the Coen’s do too as they put effort in the look and of course the great casting. All in all, I still gave it a thumbs up on Netflix but I wouldn’t recommend it.
Bumblebee (24 04 2019) – Much better than anything Michael Bay could ever do. Sweet and easy popcorn flick. I hope the transformers franchise changes for the better.
Solo: A Star Wars Story (20 05 2019) – I needed to wash my brain after that GoT finale and see Emilia Clarke in a character with nuance. I put off watching this for awhile mostly because I knew it would be a decent popcorn flick. I watched it while doing chores, having lunch, and making Swedish cinnamon rolls. Maybe it’s because I knew going in that the movie had some weak areas, but I liked it. I thought it had a great cast and that everyone got to do something interesting.
The Death of Stalin (21 05 2019) – This is such an odd movie. It somehow manages to balance the inherent anxiety and fear of the time with black comedy. It’s very unique in its very dark themes and plot, but it is done well. Fantastic cast and acting. It is entertaining and thought provoking. While not completely historically accurate, it probably does capture the gist and spirit of history. A good watch.
“The OA” – We started this late March/early April. We watched it slowly for about five episodes but I wanted to move ahead so I binged the rest of Part 1 and all of Part 2 around April 22. I really liked this show. Good acting, very well shot, but it has a very interesting premise and world building. It is very slow so I am wary to recommend it to anyone, but I enjoyed weird shows like this.
“Line of Duty” Series 5 – Have not even seen series 1-4. I liked it and can see why it’s good, but some of these interrogation scenes were very long. End felt a bit dragged out.
“Game of Thrones” Season 8 – I don’t want to talk about it.
“Dix pour cent (Call my Agent!)” Season 3 (05-07 03 2019) – French comedy series on Netflix that I have been following. My French has been dropping off lately and I haven’t been watching as many French things. I try to do it while knitting so this helped me finish the Pavement sweater.
“Russian Doll” Season 1 (07 03 2019) – I like the time loop trope. I went in unspoiled and am so glad. I like how well written and acted it was. While it was sometimes crass and crude, the heart of it is about empathy and human connection. Good stuff.
Ant-Man and the Wasp (07-08 03 2019) – Enjoyable largely because of the cast. Wish it had more Pffeifer!
“Plan Coeur (The Hookup Plan)” Season 1 (11-12 03 2019) – Not as good as Dix pour cent. So many unlikable characters but at least the two leads and some of the supporting characters are OK. They hooked me with the cliffhanger ending. I wouldn’t recommend it to everyone though.
Le Jeu (Nothing to Hide) (12 03 2019) – French film that about boring middle aged French married couples having problems stuff. Mostly boring and full of unlikable characters. It was short at least.
Bienvenue a Marly-Gormont (The African Doctor) (19 03 2019) – Better than the last French movie but had some second hand embarrassment from the first hour or so.
Le Monde est a toi (The World is Yours) (19 03 2019) – I need to take a break from these French movies. I think I’ve watched most of the ones available on Netflix now. This one also had a bad start and the script is not great. The actors made it bearable. Vincent Cassel and Isabelle Adjani are in it. The best thing about this movie was the small moment of genuine friendship between an older guy and a little girl who experiences being abused by their parents.
Your Name / Kimi no Na wa (24 03 2019) – Beautiful. I’ve been meaning to watch this for awhile. I use to grow up watching a few anime series but I feel like the best ones lately and for most part are the movies.
Hidden Figures (30 03 2019) – A nice period piece with lots of good acting. There is aspect of feel good Hollywood but at least it’s about Women of Colour.
King of thieves (18 02 2019) – We watched this for the great cast and while there are some funny moments due primarily to the cast chemistry, the script and pacing was off. Tone was a bit weird too; it was darkly funny but then other times it couldn’t balance the darker moments.
Spiderman: Into the Spider-Verse (22 03 2019) – Very fun and worth the praise and help. This movie uses the animated medium to the best of storytelling. Great music and soundtrack and probably the best Sony spider-man movie ever. Will rewatch some of my favourite parts.
TV shows currently watching:
- Masterchef UK
- My Kitchen Rules
- Great British Sewing Bee