Dude Rates Movies

2023 facts

In 2023, I watched 78 movies, including 72 movies I never saw before and 25 movies at the theater.

My longest streak of movie-watching days was from 11 February to 13 February, with 3 movies watched.

My longest pause without any movie-watching was from 9 December to 23 December.

The oldest movie I saw was Singin' in the Rain, from 1952.

2023 Premiere League

A-rated movies I saw in 2023 which were released in 2023.

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Killers of the Flower Moon
Martin Scorsese — 2023
Leonardo DiCaprio, Robert De Niro, Lily Gladstone
Saturday 21 October 2023 📽️

The movie screams for being a mini-series, especially when some scenes feel rushed in spite of the already 3h30 runtime. I bet there is a 5-hours cut somewhere on Scorsese's shelves.

I enjoyed the minimalism of the movie, seldom using cinematic artifice to build up emotions, and depending on really great directing instead. Contrarily to recent long productions making heavy usage of soundtrack and editing whose result can sometimes feel like feature-length TikToks, Killers of the Flower Moon is all about restraint, and thoughtful dialogues, camera blocking, and acting.

The trio Leonardo DiCaprio, Robert De Niro, Lily Gladstone works incredibly well.

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Extraction II
Extraction 2
Sam Hargrave — 2023
Chris Hemsworth, Golshifteh Farahani, Adam Bessa
Monday 10 July 2023

I like the movement of specialized filmmakers crafting video-game-like action scenes with an emphasis on spectacular choreography and tracking shots (The Raid franchise, John Wick franchise, Athena from last year, etc).

Extraction II is a prime example. Stunning craft.

2023 Catchup League

A-rated movies released in 2023 which I watched after 2023.

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The Zone of Interest
Jonathan Glazer — 2023
Sandra HĂĽller, Christian Friedel, Freya Kreutzkam
Saturday 3 February 2024 📽️

This movie has extraordinary qualities that definitely make up for the lack of plot: The sound design, which is basically a second movie inside the movie, and which sets up the terribly heavy atmosphere of the movie. The exploration of the psychology of the main characters, and especially Höss' wife, whose attachment to the home seems insane from an external point of view. The amount of research done by the crew ahead of filming.

Among the movies about the Holocaust I've seen so far (although I've not yet seen Claude Lanzmann' Shoah), it is the one that makes me wonder the most about the sheer magnitude and nonsensicality of the final solution. The constant low background noise constitutes the clearest signal of industrialization of death as anything I've seen in cinema before, while the mundanity of unbothered family affairs contrasting with the distant sounds of violence conveys how numb Nazis had became to their own disgusting enterprise.

A haunting piece of cinema that needs to be seen, once.

Watched in 2024

2023 Classics League

A-rated movies I saw in 2023 which were released before 2023.

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Falcon Lake
Charlotte Le Bon — 2022
Joseph Engel, Sara Montpetit, Monia Chokri
Tuesday 11 July 2023

One of the best coming-of-age movie out there, even though it stayed under the radar.

  • Neat cinematography.
  • Excellent acting from lead character.
  • Nice cinema references to the theme of immortality (Psycho and The Sixth Sense)
  • Nice blending of horror shots into a non-horror movie (or was it?)
    • Especially the playful shots that start hard-to-explain and then get explained.
  • Excellent sudden and unexpected anxiety-inducing scene.
  • Ballsy ending.

Great stuff.

Released in 2022
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Romain Gavras — 2022
Dali Benssalah, Sami Slimane, Anthony Bajon
Sunday 22 January 2023

Ce film peut être interprété comme étant de droite, de gauche, ou neutre.

De droite car le scénario catastrophe qu'il explore le contraint à associer pendant toute sa durée l'imagerie de la cité avec l'imagerie de la violence.

De gauche car son utilisation des codes du film de guerre mythologique lui fait esthétiser les deux camps qui s'affrontent, qui ont chacune leurs raisons et leur cause à défendre suite à un casus belli, atténuant ainsi l’asymétrie des rôles de la délinquance d'un côté, et de l'ordre républicain de l'autre.

Neutre, car il se refuse effrontément à toute tentative de rationalisation, ou d'aide à l'interprétation de ce qu'il montre.

Il faut embrasser l'interprétation de la neutralité pour pouvoir apprécier le spectacle cinématographique sidérant, qui a de quoi rendre fier le cinéma français quant à sa capacité technique et esthétique.

Released in 2022
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Damien Chazelle — 2022
Brad Pitt, Margot Robbie, Jean Smart
Thursday 19 January 2023 📽️

This movie feels like the aftermath of a solid movie that decided to do cocaine. It has the size of a Scorcese saga, the punch of Mad Max: Fury Road, the excessiveness of The Wolf of Wall Street, and the overwhelming anxiety of Mother! It's a disjointed mess that fires all cylinders in all directions, with bodily fluids and evil Tobey McGuire and jazz and a love of cinema. It's a massive beast that moves with weird gesticulation, grand directing, deliciously outrageous scenes, and kind of lands on its feet, like a cat that just panicked after having set a kitchen on fire.

I had a great time watching it.

Released in 2022