From: Bill Anderson <>
Subject: Re: My Top Ten Films of 2017
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NNTP-Posting-Date: Wed, 03 Jan 2018 07:25:47 -0600
Subject: Re: My Top Ten Films of 2017
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From: Bill Anderson <>
Date: Wed, 3 Jan 2018 07:25:45 -0600
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On 1/3/2018 6:01 AM, Mark Leeper wrote:
> On Tuesday, January 2, 2018 at 3:58:11 PM UTC-5, Bill Anderson wrote:
>> On 1/2/2018 1:49 PM, moviePig wrote:
>>> On 1/2/2018 2:05 PM, Bill Anderson wrote:
>>>> On 1/2/2018 11:08 AM, Mark Leeper wrote:
>>>>>                        My Top Ten Films of 2017
>>>>>                  (film comments by Mark R. Leeper)
>>>>> Once again it is time to pick out what I consider the best of the
>>>>> best films I saw this year and I have to bemoan the fact that I am
>>>>> just not in a position to see all the films that deserve
>>>>> recommendations.  I should not call these the top ten films of
>>>>> 2017, but the top ten I have managed to see.  It also is not a good
>>>>> idea putting a bunch of these films together and rank ordering
>>>>> them.  Last year there were four or five good documentaries wholly
>>>>> or in part about police brutality, race relations, and riots.  This
>>>>> year there is at least that many.  It was a topic that was very
>>>>> much in the news in 2017.  If they were seen separately and months
>>>>> apart they would probably get high ratings.  But it is hard to see
>>>>> three in a week and not down-rate them for being so similar and not
>>>>> have that affect my opinion.
>>>>> Films are rated on a -4 to +4 scale.
>>>>> This film is based on a true story.  Molly Bloom wanted to be an
>>>>> Olympic skier and came very close to making it.  Then in an instant
>>>>> she had an accident, was washed out, and had to give up her Olympic
>>>>> dreams.  By chance she ended up inheriting the job of organizing the
>>>>> most exclusive weekly poker game in the world.  This task brought
>>>>> her some small fame and some major fortune in (honest) tips.
>>>>> MOLLY'S GAME is written and directed by Aaron Sorkin who wrote THE
>>>>> did much of the writing for "The West Wing".  I will be honest that
>>>>> sports films are not my thing, and poker films are not my thing
>>>>> either.  I started this film thinking it was not for me.  It took
>>>>> five minutes before I became fascinated by this film and by Molly.
>>>>> Jessica Chastain is captivating as Molly Bloom and Idris Elba is
>>>>> her lawyer.  When the two talk they are really convincing as being
>>>>> very, very smart.  Much of the film revolves around the fact that
>>>>> Molly has very high scruples.  The FBI did not believe that, but I
>>>>> do.  This film was a lot of enjoyment and it may well be the most
>>>>> fun I will have at the movies this year.  This is a major role for
>>>>> Chastain and I suspect that from now on she will be thought of as a
>>>>> glamorous actress.  Rating: +3
>>>>> THE POST
>>>>> Set in 1971, the owner of the Washington Post is faced with a
>>>>> Constitutional issue of whether to publish the contents of the
>>>>> Pentagon papers or to allow the government to gag her newspaper.
>>>>> Meanwhile as the first woman ever to own a newspaper she gets
>>>>> little respect from her own staff.  Steven Spielberg directs a good
>>>>> cast led by Meryl Streep and Tom Hanks.  Hanks's character,
>>>>> Streep's editor-in-chief, is pushing for the newspaper to exercise
>>>>> the First Amendment right of the newspaper.  But that way leads to
>>>>> a lot of trouble.  Rating: +3
>>>>> JANE
>>>>> This biography of Jane Goodall shows us how by studying chimpanzees
>>>>> she has changed our definition of what is and is not human.  We
>>>>> see her in-depth (and continuing) study of chimpanzee behavior.  The
>>>>> film is a feast for the eye with its beautiful animal photography.
>>>>> Just how these images became part of the film is actually part of
>>>>> the story.  This is certainly one of the year's best documentaries.
>>>>> Rating: +3
>>>>> This is an epic yet personal story, a memoir of one very young
>>>>> girl.  Loung Ung, survived in Cambodia when the violently militant
>>>>> Khmer Rouge controlled much of the populace.  The narrative is just
>>>>> as vicious and painful as the title suggests it to be.  Angelina
>>>>> Jolie directs from a script by she co-authored with the real Loung
>>>>> Ung.  Rating: +3
>>>>> With an unusual stylistic approach, Christopher Nolan writes and
>>>>> directs his re-creation of one of the most heroic retreats in
>>>>> history.  400,000 British soldiers had been fighting in Europe and
>>>>> now were surrounded by Germans, stranded on the beaches of near the
>>>>> French town of Dunkirk where they were vulnerable to attack from
>>>>> the land, sea, and air.  At the same time as he is telling the
>>>>> story, Nolan does some strange experiments with cinematic time that
>>>>> the inattentive viewer (like me perhaps) might easily miss.  Rating:
>>>>> +3
>>>>> This is the story of the lives of a Hollywood couple, Lillian and
>>>>> Harold Michelson, who were the barely-sung heroes of the Hollywood
>>>>> film industry for six decades.  Harold had an instinct for how films
>>>>> should look and created pitch-perfect storyboards, often
>>>>> transforming the director's whole vision of the film being shot.
>>>>> Lillian had a huge and astutely collected research library to find
>>>>> authentic visions from around the world, from all of history, and
>>>>> into the future.  The story of their private lives is a love story
>>>>> of a perfect marriage.  Their visual style and knowledge shaped the
>>>>> look and feel of surprisingly many classic films.  This film was
>>>>> written, produced, and directed by Daniel Raim.  Rating: low +3
>>>>> This is based on a true story.  Stricken with polio and a prognosis
>>>>> of only three months to live, Robin Cavendish must first overcome
>>>>> his death wish.  He then attacks his problem that he must live in
>>>>> hospital with an immovable respirator.  With the help of friends he
>>>>> engineers a way to live at home and then to actually move around.
>>>>> His engineering solutions improved the lives of thousands of polio
>>>>> victims.  Andy Serkis's directorial debut is a moving paean to the
>>>>> human spirit and the possibilities of engineering.  Rating: high +2
>>>>> BLADE RUNNER 2049
>>>>> After thirty-five years the classic science fiction film BLADE
>>>>> RUNNER gets a sequel directed by Denis Villeneuve and based on a
>>>>> screenplay by Hampton Fancher among others.  The story concerns a
>>>>> search for the author of the false memories implanted in replicants.
>>>>> The film is a long 163 minutes starting at a contemplative (not to
>>>>> say "snail's") pace, yet is a little overstuffed with action later
>>>>> in the second half.  It is richer in ideas than is the original
>>>>> film, though it lacks the iconic visuals that that first film did
>>>>> so well.  Rating: high +2
>>>>> A police detective stalks a serial killer in Victorian London and
>>>>> tries to connect it to a recent killing.  The film feels as if it
>>>>> was dipped in "Victorian atmosphere concentrate." The movie takes
>>>>> itself very serious indeed, but the viewer can look between the
>>>>> lines to see it as something of a romp.  Peter Ackroyd's 1994 novel
>>>>> DAN LENO AND THE LIMEHOUSE GOLEM is the basis of this dourly fun
>>>>> mystery with a popular London music hall as a background.  Juan
>>>>> Carlos Medina directs a screen adaptation by Jane Goldman.  The film
>>>>> features the never-fail actor Bill Nighy and Olivia Cooke.  The
>>>>> mystery is perhaps not enough mysterious, but the acting and the
>>>>> look and feel are worth the trip.  Incidentally, one disappointment
>>>>> is that the plot has virtually nothing to do with golems.  Rating:
>>>>> high +2
>>>>> Dr. Bassem Youssef was a heart surgeon in Cairo who was fascinated
>>>>> by "The Daily Show" and its host Jon Stewart.  He quit medicine and
>>>>> started his own satirical daily show, patterning himself after
>>>>> Stewart, but in a country where extremists can be deadly.  This
>>>>> documentary, heavily laced with humor and satire, tells the story
>>>>> of Youssef and his send-up show(s) under three dangerous and
>>>>> autocratic presidents of Egypt.  Rating: high +2
>>>>>                      Mark R. Leeper
>>>>>                      Copyright 2018 Mark R. Leeper
>>>> This year I am looking for A GHOST STORY to appear on the year-end
>>>> best 10 lists.  I think those not including it are flawed.
>>> Came out in July.  Unpropitious...
>> And yet this guy at USA Today ranked it #1 for the year:
>> I also just noticed Leeper didn't include THREE BILLBOARDS either, so I
>> suppose it's best to understand his list as "the best 10 movies I saw in
>> 2017" rather than "the best 10 of 2017."  Actually I really appreciate
>> his list.  There are some movies on it that I really must make an effort
>> to see.
>> -- 
>> Bill Anderson
>> I am the Mighty Favog
> THREE BILLBOARDS would have been on a Top 15 list.  Very well acted film.  Rockwell was very good.
 I think some people did not like the ending (or lack thereof).

But what about A GHOST STORY?

Bill Anderson

I am the Mighty Favog