‘I have now watched 271 hours of films so far this year!’

Aoife Wood is back with another update on her 2024 challenge to watch a film a day.

(Image: Jeremy Yap, Unsplash)

This month I went a little Wes Anderson crazy, but I also watched plenty of other fantastic films. I have now watched 271 hours of films so far this year! 

My top 5 this month are The Souvenir, Rushmore, The Grand Budapest Hotel, The Secret in Their Eyes and Bridesmaids.  

Here is every film I watched in May:

01/05/24: The Souvenir ★★★★☆

Watching this felt like walking home in the evening and glancing into the windows you pass or overhearing a conversation on the bus. It felt real and not performed. 

02/05/24: The Other Guys ★★★☆☆

Really stupid and mildly funny. The Other Guys does not stand out from the masses of comedic action films – maybe it’s even a little worse than others – but it was exactly what I needed and when consumed with some good snacks it really isn’t so bad.

03/05/24: Saint Maud ★★★☆☆

I kept waiting for it to finish setting the scene and for the story to begin. Overall, I guess it wasn’t too bad, hence the 3 stars, but I was frequently bored and I was dissatisfied with the ending. 

04/05/24: Bullet Train ★★★☆☆

Without Aaron Taylor-Johnson and Brian Tyree Henry this film would have been incredibly boring! 

05/05/24: Superbad ★★★★☆

I am grateful every day that Michael Cera became an actor. I have rewatched this film so many times now and everytime it delivers. 

06/05/24: The Cat with Hands ★★★★☆

Such a good stop animation short – and absolutely terrifying too.

07/05/24: In the Loop ★★★★☆

Sadly still a painfully accurate representation of world politics. Thank god this film managed to make it incredibly funny and not debilitatingly depressing. 

08/05/24: The Rat Catcher ★★★☆☆

I had been meaning to watch the Wes Anderson Roald Dahl shorts, and now finally I have. The Rat Catcher was an excellent start (though not the official order), and led to a brief Wes Anderson watching spree for me.

09/05/24: I’m Not There ★★★★★

In my other article, Comment: A Complete Unknown, I briefly went over I’m Not There and highly recommended it. So here I will explain why I regard it so highly. Firstly, it is really really fun. One of my absolute favourite scenes was the (fake) Beatles giggling and rolling around on a hill like Teletubbies. Secondly, the acting is incredible – Cate Blanchett’s performance is one of the best I have seen. And finally, the soundtrack cannot be beaten.

10/05/24: The Wonderful Story of Henry Sugar ★★★★☆

This was the second Anderson-Dahl short I watched, and I remain impressed. Officially, this is the first in the series but I found the order didn’t seem to matter much. Like The Rat Catcher, this short was quite excellent. 

11/05/24: Poison ★★★★★

My favourite of the shorts series! I am completely terrified of snakes so this one was very close to home. 

12/05/24: The Swan ★★★★☆

Although I have given The Swan the same rating as The Wonderful Story of Henry Sugar, I found it to be substantially better, though not quite Poison level. I think the smaller cast of The Swan appealed to me. It felt much more cosy.

13/05/24: Logan Lucky ★★★☆☆

Somehow both really hard to follow and incredibly formulaic. I have given Logan Lucky a three because I cannot think of anything I would change about it but at the same time it was dull and boring.

14/05/24: The Loved Ones ★★★★☆

Not quite as terrifying as I hoped but plenty gory. The whole cast was fantastic, particularly Robin McLeavy as Lola Stone.

15/05/24: The Beguiled ★★★★☆

Sofia Coppola is almost unmatched in telling the stories of women and girls. Her understanding of her characters shines through in The Beguiled. The film is rather typical of her other ‘historic’ pieces in that it uses historical circumstances to tell the story of modern women and girls. I think critics fail to understand this approach and hastily condemn Coppola for paying little attention to historical nuances.

16/05/24: Bodies Bodies Bodies ★★★★☆

Okay I know this came out two years ago and I definitely should have watched it much much much sooner. But, when it came out I accidentally saw some spoilers on social media so I put off watching it in the hope that I would forget the spoilers; I did not forget. Luckily, the film was still incredibly fun.

17/05/24: Rushmore ★★★★☆

The Wes Anderson spree begins. Firstly, Jason Schwartzman is a blessing to cinema. Secondly, I loved this film.

18/05/24: No film.

19/05/24: No film again (oops).

20/05/24: The Grand Budapest Hotel ★★★★★

Everything about this film was perfect. I love when films focus on being fun.

21/05/24: Paddington ★★★★☆

I was in need of this Paddington rewatch. Such a good way to relax and destress after hours in the library (and an excellent way to catch up on my film goal).

Paddington 2 ★★★★★

Very few sequels manage to match the original and somehow Paul King managed to make Paddington 2 even better than the first. 

22/05/24: To all the Boys I’ve Loved Before ★★★★☆

I know these films are not for everyone and that many find them to be unwatchable garbage but I like them. I don’t care that the characters don’t know how to communicate and that all the actors look too old to be playing teenagers. 

To All the Boys: P.S I Still Love You ★★★☆☆

I will admit that P.S I Still Love You is less enjoyable than the first film. The love triangle was so forced but I still found the film rather sweet and charming.

23/05/24: To All the Boys: Always and Forever ★★★★☆

Thankfully no forced love triangle in the final addition to the film series. Instead this film feels more coming of age than romantic comedy – and I love it. It still has the romance and charm of the previous films whilst also feeling new.

24/05/24: This is 40 ★★★☆☆

Quite unfunny for a comedy but still entertaining enough. Plus, Fiona Apple wrote a song for the soundtrack.

25/05/24: The Robbery ★★★☆☆

Another short film! Amazing that this was all one take. Sadly, for me it felt a little flat and dull. 

26/05/24: White Noise ★★★★☆ 

I am slowly, and unintentionally, working my way through Baumbach’s films. So far, Frances Ha remains my favourite, though White Noise does come close. I loved that he chose to end this film with a fun dance number; I wish more films included good credits scenes. 

27/05/24: Moonrise Kingdom ★★★★☆

The final Wes Anderson film of the month. I loved this one but, maybe controversial, Rushmore was much more my style.  

28/05/24: The Secret in Their Eyes ★★★★★

A masterpiece. I was completely blown away by Pablo Rago’s performance as Ricardo Morales – a man dealing with the brutal murder of his wife. I think it might be one of the best performances I have ever watched. 

29/05/24: Monty Python’s Life of Brian ★★★★☆

Coming to a conclusion on a film like this is hard. On the one hand, it is incredibly offensive and that cannot be overlooked. And on the other hand, it is representative of the time it was made – though, of course, such jokes were equally hurtful then. On a third hand there are non-offensive parts which are rather funny. 

30/05/24: Monty Python and the Holy Grail ★★★★☆

A very silly funny mess. 

31/05/24: Bridesmaids ★★★★★

I am the biggest Bridesmaids fan on the planet. I agree that it’s not massively funny – it is unfortunately plagued with unfunny toilet humour – but as a tale of female friendship it is fantastic.

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