9-15 June 2008

June 16 2008 at 10:20 pm (The list)

I was a bit lazy last week and only ticked one film off the list, but it was a doozie:

Notorious (1946)

I’ve seen most of Hitchcock’s greatest hits but that’s clearly not good enough. Such was genius of the Master of Suspense that even his less obvious films are unmissable. How could I have gone this long without seeing every last one of Hitch’s films? Cary Grant and Ingrid Bergman are brilliant as T.R. Devlin, the government agent and Alicia Huberman, the socialite he recruits to seduce and marry the sinister Alexander Sebastian (played with despicable relish by Claude Rains). Hitch always attracted the A-listers, but no star, no matter how big, could ever match the director’s own sheer crowd pleasing magic. His great skill was in breaking a story down to its very basic elements so that focusing on even the most mundane of objects can elicit gasps – a wine bottle, a set of keys, a coffee cup. Thrilling, and a killer finale too.
Rating: 5/5

Shame list total: 775
Also watched last week:

Monster’s Ball (2001)
A very affecting and tightly written drama about family, racism and the need to connect. Halle Berry deserved her Oscar for Best Actress as a widow of a man executed on death row. Billy Bob Thornton, Heath Ledger and Peter Boyle are all great as three generations of a family of ‘corrections officers’. Marc Forster (Finding Neverland, Stranger Than Fiction) is one of the most interesting directors around at the moment – Quantum of Solace (aka Bond 22) should be worth a watch with him behind the camera. Rating: 4/5

I also watched Sex and the City last week. A separate review will follow shortly – I need space to rant.

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