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David Poland

By David Poland

BYOB – Happy New Year


52 Responses to “BYOB – Happy New Year”

  1. Bender says:

    I paid to see 168 movies in the theatre this year. Down quite a bit from last year.

    My fave films of the year:

    #1–Florida Project

    the rest in no particular order

    Brad’s Status
    Brigsby Bear
    Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 2
    The Lost City of Z
    Last Flag Flying
    Battle of the Sexes
    Lady Macbeth
    and…Red Christmas

    Call Me by Your Name, Shape of Water and I, Tonya haven’t made it to my mid-size town yet.

    Funny, every movie but GOTG and Red Christmas were seen at the tiny art-house screen in my city. Thank god for Studio 7.

  2. Nick says:

    Phantom Theead by far best film of the year with ample help from ddl’s performance.

    Very close second 3 billboards. Would have been first with a different ending (one that maybe played on for another 10 mins and showed a little you know what).

    Post was horrible. Fucking atrocious made for tv film that wanted to be 7 different movies. Spielberg is done.

    Lady bird was like Juno but more fucking boring and pointless and masturbatory which is saying something.

    The end.

  3. Non-Revisionist says:

    “Phantom Theead BY FAR best film of the year”


    “VERY CLOSE SECOND 3 billboards”

    Make up your mind, Nick.

  4. Sideshow Bill says:

    I don’t have my top 10 yet because I still have much to see.

    That being said Brawl On Cell Block 99…fuck yeah. B movie heaven.

    Blade Runner 2049 later tonight. Also Killing Of A Sacred Deer

    Lady Bird and Three Billboards by next weekend. I’m getting there.

  5. Nick says:

    non revisionist –
    I did make up my mind.

  6. Triple Option says:

    @Nick – If you say “by far the best film” that would indicate a large margin between it and any others. Saying a “close second” would mean that it was a tough call between the two and therefore not a wide margin between Phantom and the others.

  7. Triple Option says:

    I recently re-watched Logan. No special reason other than a family member hadn’t seen it. Easier to watch with a more critical eye. Man, that girl’s performance was off the hook! I thought she was great the first time but later did wonder if I was remembering incorrectly. Like was it at all gimmicky or smoke and mirrors with quick cutaways or whatnot? No, she was amazing. Why no love for her? Yes, economic factors in pushing a minor, yes, two big stars above her, yes superhero film, but I’m not seeing any sort of mention or recognition. At this point, I should at least know Dafne Keen’s name without having to look it up on imdb, but I didn’t and had to check before completing this post. What’s up w/that?

  8. Joshua says:

    Am I the only one wishing that they had killed two birds with one stone and erased Mark Wahlberg from All the Money in the World, too? Ryan Gosling, Gyllenhaal or almost anybody else would better. I just don’t understand why I need to have that artless dope in my eye line while I’m trying to watch Michelle Williams be wonderful. Honestly, why isn’t she the star of the film?

  9. Joe Leydon says:

    My wife and I saw Darkest Hour today, and we both liked it. (I value her opinion for many reasons, not the least being she’s an intelligent moviegoer who doesn’t bother reading movie websites.) But I can’t help wondering: How many people who still buy tickets to see movies actually know who Winston Churchill was?

  10. Bob Burns says:

    Regarding Oren Glieberman’s essay on The Post:

    The was on truth has deep roots in American history. Read Tuchman’s “Stillwell and the American Experience in China”. Henry Luce and Time Magazine were the leaders of an evangelistic Christian cross-demonimational cult, quite analogous to the Fox News Christian evangelistic cult of today.

  11. Js partisan says:

    He wants me dead, Leah. I know that much! I’m just going with its Leydon, but he fucked up his account. If it’s not… What the fuck?

  12. Glamourboy says:

    Joshua, I like your idea of erasing Wahlberg…but I think they should go further…at least as an SNL parody….they should have Christopher Plummer playing all the roles….call it, All The Plummer In The World…

  13. Joe Leydon says:


  14. Joe Leydon says:

    And again: I don’t want you dead, JS. I just wish you had never been born. Now that you’re here, you must be dealt with.

  15. movieman says:

    Not that anybody asked, but since people are sharing their 2017 favorites, here’s my personal top 10. (Yeah, I know the first two weren’t theatrical releases, although they did get festival exposure.)
    Twin Peaks: The Return
    Phantom Thread
    The Meyerowitz Stories (New and Selected)
    Lady Bird
    Song To Song
    Personal Shopper
    Molly’s Game
    Wind River

  16. EtGuild2 says:

    Yay! I was going to ask you movieman. I’m not there yet, but an interesting list as always. Personal Shopper is the only crossover, but you (again as always) have some inclusions that I skipped that I’m now considering visiting.

    @Sideshow Bill, yes to BRAWL! A great B movie, a revelation for Vince Vaughn and the best blocky, hulking title of the year :)

  17. JS Partisan says:

    Hey David Poland or Ray Pride: Joe Leydon is personally attacking me, and wishing death on me. If you truly care about making this a safe place to post, then ban his ass immediately. Physical violence and death threats, have no place on this blog. I don’t care who the fuck he used to be. He’s wishing DEATH AND VIOLENCE UPON ME, AND NO ONE SHOULD STAND FOR IT.

  18. movieman says:

    Anxious to see your list as well, Ethan.
    You always manage to list a number of things that I inadvertently skipped, or which flew under my radar.
    Speaking of which, I finally got around to pair of online screeners yesterday that I’d been putting off (mainly because I hate watching movies online), and one of them was a revelation.
    Loved Almereyda’s “Escapes”! Hampton Fancher led a fascinating life, and Almereyda does it justice. (The Brian Kelly stuff is really, really moving.) One of my top three docs of 2017.
    It took me awhile–two-thirds of the movie, actually–but I eventually came around to “Columbus,” mostly because of Haley Lu Richardson. Until then, I was ready to dismiss it as a failed (English-language) Eugene Green pastiche.
    Share the “Brawl”/Vaughn enthusiasm, but my favorite performances were actually turned in by Don Johnson and Marc Blucas, two underrated actors who deserve to be getting more high-profile gigs.
    Like Zahler’s “Bone Tomahawk,” I wanted it to be 15-30 minutes shorter. The Phil Karlson and Don Siegel movies Zahler pays homage to would have clocked in at a judicious 102 minutes max.

  19. Stella Boy says:

    I’d argue that cell block is a great movie period and not just a great b movie. One of the very best of the year and vastly superior to overrated drivel like three billboards and baby driver.

  20. Sideshow Bill says:

    Stella’s Boy wrote:

    “I’d argue that cell block is a great movie period and not just a great b movie. One of the very best of the year and vastly superior to overrated drivel like three billboards and baby driver.”

    I can get with that. Bone Tomahawk is also fantastic. Craig Zahler has a talent for freshening up old genres.

  21. Joe Leydon says:

    Speaking of badass B-movies: Anyone here see Mayhem and/or Wheelman? Yeah, I know, the latter was a Netflix nontheatrical. But still…

  22. EtGuild2 says:

    @movieman, here’s my working list which is looking more and more like a final list as the Oscar contenders fall short this year (though I like most).

    1. Mother!
    2. Blade Runner
    3. Frantz
    4. Personal Shopper
    5. Baby Driver
    6. A Ghost Story
    7. Logan
    8. Columbus
    9. We Are the Flesh
    10. Lady Macbeth

    Close calls: The Untamed and Marjorie Prime.

    I’d LOVE your thoughts on Frantz and Lady MacBeth if you haven’t seen them.

  23. EtGuild2 says:

    @Stella them is fighting words, though I agree on Three Billboards. You should find this movie if you look up passion play in the dictionary.

  24. Stella's Boy says:

    Sorry but I detest Baby Driver. I mean seriously loathe it with the fire of a thousand suns. Three Billboards I don’t hate. I just think it’s overrated and mediocre. Baby Driver I hate, hate, hate.

    I want to see Mayhem and Wheelman. They look like fun, and the latter has Frank Grillo. That’s always a plus.

  25. MarkVH says:

    Baby Driver isn’t very good. Edgar Wright’s worst movie by a wide margin.

  26. Joe Leydon says:

    Stella’s Boy: If you dig Frank Grillo, I hope you caught Wolf Warrior 2. At this year’s Fantastic Fest, Grillo said, only half-jokingly, that because of that movie’s extraordinary success, he can’t walk down the street anywhere in China without being mobbed.

  27. EtGuild2 says:

    “Baby Driver isn’t very good. Edgar Wright’s worst movie by a wide margin.”

    oookay. I respect your opinion Stella, but statements like this are batshit nuts. “The World’s End” is better by a wide margin? That was a fanboy ejaculation in cinematic form. An awful piece of trash with lazy callbacks and throwbacks to cinema standing in as some sort of support structure. It is a raging piece of dumpsterfire garbage.

    That being said, I can appreciate Baby Driver hate, but worse by a “wide” margin? Fanboy derangement syndrome. Nothing can be worse by a wide margin than “A World’s End,” even if you shat out a feature after your morning coffee.

  28. movieman says:

    Interesting list as always, Ethan!
    “Frantz” and “Lady Macbeth” both made my runner’s-up (in alphabetical order, lol) sidebar.
    The former was my favorite Ozon in years; and the latter is a stunningly assured debut…with a breathtaking Florence Pugh performance that deserves to factor into every Best Actress awards conversation. (I think we’ve chatted about her before.)

  29. Stella's Boy says:

    I didn’t say that Ethan. That was MarkVH. However, I found The World’s End more tolerable than Baby Driver.

    Is Wolf Warrior 2 a good movie, or just noteworthy for Grillo’s presence?

  30. Joe Leydon says:

    Stella’s Boy: I enjoyed Wolf Warrior II a great deal, though I must admit that its sheer novelty value as a Chinese version of a rah-rah, flag-waving American action flick is what really fascinated me. Here’s what I had to say about it a few months back.

  31. MarkVH says:

    Not a fanboy (in my experience, fanboys were the ones who creamed all over Baby Driver). And yes, I believe The World’s End is a better movie than BD. “By a wide margin” is subjective, obviously, but I believe the difference in quality is significant.

    And I realize I’m in a minority on this. I’m at peace with that.

    On another note – I finally caught up with Coco this past week and I’m bummed that it’s not more in the Best Picture conversation. I think it’s Pixar’s best movie since Up – better than either Toy Story 3 or Inside Out – and one of the four or five best they’ve ever made. Just a lovely, beguiling piece of filmmaking.

  32. EtGuild2 says:

    @Stella, yeah I wasn’t pegging that comment on you, just attempting to draw a line with BD hate.

    Mark…unless I’m missing something, BD’s cinematography and soundtrack craps all over “World’s End.” So maybe you prefer the acting, which Mr. Pegg and co have admitted they were not in the right state of mind for certain scenes. Bully, I suppose. A drunken frat boy romp dismissed by its own creators is way better than BD…but seems crazy to me.

  33. EtGuild2 says:

    @movieman, ah yes, we spoke about both of these. It’s been awhile! And yeah, Pugh’s neglect in the Oscar conversation sucks.

  34. Stella's Boy says:

    I wasn’t blown away by the music in Baby Driver, and the lead performance is fucking awful, probably my least favorite performance of the year. I like the cast a lot but none of them does their best work. So yeah I’d watch the world’s end again before BD.

  35. MarkVH says:

    Ethan, I found The World’s End a very funny, slyly subversive satire of fanboy culture and the nature of sequels. Don’t know if the actors were sloshed during its making, though that would certainly fit with the story. And I found it’s soundtrack and cinematography every bit the equal of Baby Driver – actually better in most respects.

    BD, for me, had one great car chase (the first one) before going downhill from there and then totally flying off the rails in its third act (after Foxx eats it), when it just throws away any semblance of narrative logic and becomes an endless barrage of noisy action sequences with characters just showing up out of nowhere with no explanation for how or why they got there. Also didn’t buy the love story for a second. It’s every bit the fanboy wank that TWE is (because news flash: that’s what Wright does) but to me it was his most half-assed script.

    And like I said, I realize I’m in a minority on this. I know people love the movie, because I guess it makes them feel cool or whatever. But it just didn’t work for me at all.

  36. MarkVH says:

    Also, Baby is a dick, and no girl in her right mind would run off with him before or after he repeatedly and carelessly endangers her life.

  37. Stella's Boy says:

    Amen Mark. That perfectly sums up my feelings about BD. By the time Hamm is Michael Myers in the home stretch I was laughing my ass off. I would have loved it at 15.

  38. leahnz says:

    ‘baby driver’ shits the bed in the third act

    ‘the world’s end’ is weird and hilarious english cringe humour (“let’s booboo” is a permanent fixture in our household’s lexicon. we’ll always have the disableds)

  39. movieman says:

    Ethan- Looking forward to “The Commuter” if only to see how a mainstream formula movie handles a firebrand talent like Pugh.

    Somehow I’m thinking “She was wasted!” will be on my lips as I exit the theater.

  40. Bender says:

    I rented Super Dark Times on Boxing Day…$6. It appeared on Netflix today!! ARGH!!

  41. Stella's Boy says:

    Great movie Bender. Loved it.

  42. Sideshow Bill says:

    I love Baby Driver. It didn’t make me “feel cool.” I had a lot of fun. I see the flaws but don’t care because I had fun and I was invested in it. It’s in my top 10.

    Sometimes you just have fun and that’s fine. That’s the case for me with the film.

  43. movieman says:

    I love “Baby Driver,” too, Bill.
    Don’t understand the hate. (Because it was the first Edgar Wright movie that actually made money in the U.S.?)
    “Driver” is my favorite Wright since “Shaun of the Dead;” it was the shot of adrenaline I desperately needed in an especially woebegone summer for studio releases.

    S.B.= I said the same thing about “John Wick” when it opened a few years back: that my 15-year-old self would’ve loved it more than my grown-up self.
    Yet weirdly, I turned cartwheels over “Wick 2″ last February.

  44. Stella's Boy says:

    I love fun! I think both John Wick movies are fun. I can’t believe people like Elgort in BD. I wanted to punch him in the face from scene one. He’s like fingernails on chalkboard. If you detest the lead the whole thing falls apart. My feelings have nothing to do with box office. That doesn’t make sense.

  45. movieman says:

    Hey, different strokes and all that, SB.
    I thought Elgort and Lily James were just about the cutest movie couple in eons.
    But that’s just me.
    And apparently the millions of moviegoers (and majority of film critics) who loved “Baby Driver”?
    Not picking a fight; just trying to understand the hate.
    Of course, I don’t get the vitriol being directed at “Last Jedi” by “Star Wars” cultists either. If nothing else, Rian Johnson gave them more “Star Wars” (150 minutes worth) than any previous “SW” director, including George Lucas.

  46. Stella's Boy says:

    Mark sums it up very well above. I found the romance to be one of the most forced and least convincing I’ve seen in many years. She is paper thin and an extremely weak character. Yes different strokes and yes it’s a very popular movie. Not surprised that so many male critics love it.

  47. Doug R says:

    I feel your pain Bender. My wife bought Jungle Book. Showed up on Netflix the next day.

  48. movieman says:

    “Super Dark Times” is available to stream on Netflix?
    If I had known that, I would have removed it from my DVD queue (they mailed it to me last week). Same thing happened w/ “The Trip to Italy” last month.
    Netflix used to give you a head’s-up re: which titles were going to be available to stream. Now you’re pretty much on your own.
    The master lists that run on various websites heralding “what’s new” and “what’s gone” conveniently leave out most of the stuff I’m actually interested in.

  49. movieman says:

    Also find it infuriating that Netflix refuses to acknowledge the existence of “Dawson City: Frozen Time” or “Endless Poetry,” despite the fact that they were both released on home video in October and December respectively.
    One of the reasons I still pay for 3 DVDs at a time (as well as streaming which is a separate charge) is to have access to movies like that.

  50. spassky says:

    Baby Driver is the freshest movie of the year… 1998.

  51. leahnz says:

    dear frogs
    you are being boiled alive

  52. Pete B says:

    Just want to say thanks to Ray (I’m assuming as I know he’s a Gun Crazy fan) for the notice on the Homepage of Peggy Cummins passing. What an underappreciated actress! I’m a happily married man, but if ‘Annie Laurie Starr’ had wanted me to go with her on a robbery spree, I’d have been facing the police in the swamp too.

    Not many of the classic Noir stars left.

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