Close-up

You know we are officially approaching the end of the year when the web is a buzz with best film of the year discussion! For me the end of the year signifies another round of the Blind Spot Series. Created two years ago by James McNally, and championed by Ryan McNeil, the series is designed to encourage us film lovers to catch up on films that we have been procrastinating on seeing for some reason or another. Though I still have two more Blind Spot films to see before year’s end, 2013 was another great year of cinematic discovery. I finally ventured into the works of Tarkovsky, Bresson, Eisenstein, Melville and Clouzot just to name a few. Here are the films I plan to watch as part of the 2014 Blind Spot Series:

Close-Up (Abbas Kiarostami, 1990)
The Man Who Fell to Earth (Nicolas Roeg, 1976)
Mother India (Mehboob Khan, 1957)
Au hasard Baltazar (Robert Bresson, 1966)
Rebecca (Alfred Hitchcock, 1940)
The Rules of the Game (Jean Renoir, 1939)
The Life and Death of Colonel Blimp (Michael Powell & Emeric Pressburger, 1943)
Ikiru (Akira Kurosawa, 1952)
F for Fake (Orson Welles, 1973)
Audition (Takashi Miike, 1990)
L’ Avventura (Michelangelo Antonioni, 1960)
The Searchers (John Ford, 1956)

What films are currently in your cinematic blind spot?

11 Comments

  1. I’ve seen five of your twelve – you’re in for good times. I’m also starting to get amused by how many of us have chosen CLOSE-UP this year. Must be something in the water…

    1. Close-Up definitely seems to be the Moby Dick of 2014; the elusive title that everyone is trying to catch. It only jumped on my radar a few years ago after seeing and loving Certified Copy. Considering that I also enjoyed this year’s Like Someone in Love, I figured I would dive into some of Abbas Kiarostami’s earlier works. Plus it motivates me to start exploring Iranian cinema a little more as well.

  2. I’ve seen six of these – it’s a really diverse list!

    I’ve watched The Man Who Fell to Earth, Rebecca, The Rules of the Game, Ikiru, L’Avventura, and The Searchers. They’re all interesting for different reasons, with The Rules of the Game and The Searchers being the most notable ones. Both Ikiru and L’Avventura sneak up on you, so it will be interesting to read what you think of them. Can’t wait to check out your thoughts!

    1. I usually aim for diversity when picking my twelve films. It keeps things fresh and exciting. That is why past editions of the series saw films like Vanishing Point and The Omega Man included with titles like Breathless and Days of Heaven.

      The Man Who Fell to Earth is one that I am excited to finally cross off the list; especially considering how much I enjoyed Jonathan Glazer’s Under the Skin. I am told Roeg’s film covers similar themes as Glazer’s latest.

      1. I have mixed feelings about The Man Who Fell to Earth. It’s a stunning film and definitely worth seeing, though. I haven’t seen Under the Skin, so it’s interesting that it may cover similar territory.

        1. Funny, your reaction to The Man Who Fell to Earth is similar to how many reacted to Under the Skin at TIFF. Some found it visually stunning but had issues with the story and overall execution. I loved the film but can understand the divisive response it has received.

  3. Fucking great list. I’ve seen 9 of these as Au Hasard Balthazar is coming to Turner Classic Movies later this month as I hope to watch that film either late this year or early next year. Only Mother India and Rebecca will be the ones I haven’t seen. I hope you have fun w/ yours. Oh, and I don’t recommend watching Audition w/ the lights off. I’m still traumatized by that film and it still scares the shit out of me.

    1. Sadly I do not have Turner Classic Movies, so I will have to seek out Au Hasard Balthazar the old fashion way (e.g. the library, DVD rental store, etc.). Mother India was included partly because I want to experience more Indian/Bollywood cinema. I have really enjoyed the last few Bollywood titles I have watched (Eega, Gangs of Wasseypur Part One, and Bombay Talkies).

  4. Quite a few good ones in there. Of the 7 I have seen, I would love to see your take on Mother India and Ikiru. My interest in Mother India is obvious but be advised. Some people are turned off my melodrama in it. Ikiru I believe has most impressive second half I have ever seen.

    P.S.: Which one is Eega? I don’t think I know this one.

Comments are closed.