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Five Films I’m (Apparently) Thankful For

by on 2013/11/28

Hacker RendersEvery year most of us spend a day or an evening — or simply the beginning of a meal — being thankful.

I hate to think I may not appreciate the bests while I still have them. In fact, I’d like to believe that’s one of my stronger characteristics: that I enjoy the good times while they’re happening.

Although it’s statistically unflattering, a search for the word “thankful” produces five posts of about six hundred written to date. (Am I really only grateful for good movies less than 1% of the time?)

Be that as it may, such a search turned up an interesting cross-section . . . of drama, historical/western, sci-fi, documentary, and horror films, all rated four stars or more. Check them out; they’re all very good.

Further, I’ll be thankful nobody points out I’m late for (Canadian) Thanksgiving.


About a Boy (2002)About a Boy (2002)

* * * * *

“It’s tough to throw stones at an experience this strong, one prompting introspection. Even after a half-dozen viewings, it has yet to lose its effect. About a Boy appears fast-paced and light in its sense of humour. In time, however, its ideas dig deep, seeding more sober reflection and, thankfully, hope.”


The Englishman's Boy (2008)The Englishman’s Boy (2008)

* * * * *

“Unnerving, disturbing, wrenching, agonizing . . . and ultimately edifying. The Englishman’s Boy, like Terry before it, is a made-for-TV production thankfully re-released on home video. Its flaws notwithstanding — for I don’t find it perfect — it’s still an essential work to see and to share.”


Repo Men (2010)Repo Men (2010)

* * * *

“Between the graphic imagery and hard-boiled decorations, you might expect an utterly dour production. Oddly, it is not. The filmmakers seem aware of the excesses, and balance it with lighter moments, thankfully none as cringeworthy-goofy as those in Shoot ‘em Up. I choose to see it as explicit form of dark comedy.”


Comic Book Confidential (1988)Comic Book Confidential (1988)

* * * *

“[Its] variety extends to the direction and editing too. Many stretches follow a similar pattern of the artist’s thumbnail biography, a background to their work, their specific creative process, and a spoken dramatization. Animated as motion comics, drawing from original panels — including word balloons, thankfully — music, sounds, and limited visual effects are applied, and the creators read descriptions and dialogue.”


Videodrome (1983)Videodrome (1983)

* * * *

“Complications arise when [Max] starts to believe the transmission is making him ill. The question is (thankfully) left unresolved whether sickness is the cause or effect. This layer is just one of a few in the plot, sharing others with director David Cronenberg’s later eXistenZ. Both traverse the uncertainty of nested realities.”


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