The French Connection (1971)

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Since you’re reading this, yes, I’ve never actually watched The French Connection before this though I recall that this was one of the boring old films that often showed up on Malaysian television channels when I was growing up. Now I know that it’s a highly regarded crime thriller containing one of the best car chase scenes ever put on film, so watching it is a must.

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The American Friend (1977)

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We’d watched The Talented Mr. Ripley, the one starring Matt Damon, a couple of years back and rather liked it but I didn’t realize that this German film by director Wim Wenders is actually about the very same fictional character until quite a ways into it. Obviously I’ve also never read any of the novels by Patricia Highsmith and this one covers a later period in Ripley’s life.

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Stardust (2007)

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This one is obviously one of my picks, made on the basis of it being an adaptation of a Neil Gaiman novel, though it’s not one I’ve read.  It also helps that this is one of the rare fantasy film that Broken Forum users seem to like. My expectations were low however as its Rotten Tomatoes rating is only mediocre and it seems to be largely forgotten now, with not even a cult following to its name.

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Ant-Man (2015)

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This is the first of the Marvel Cinematic Universe films that I’d seriously considered not watching in the cinema. Ever since Edgar Wright left the director’s seat, it had been plagued by rumors of production problems. When it was first released, its critic ratings were awful and people were eager to call it Marvel’s first real stumble, though ratings have slowly climbed up since then. Plus, let’s face it, Ant-Man isn’t exactly the most inspiring of superheroes as even the actor who plays him, Paul Rudd, admitted.

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Braid

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Yes, it’s Braid and yes, I really should have played it ages ago, but I just kept putting it off. One reason is that it’s a puzzle platformer and I really hate platformers. Another is that I read that famous Atlantic portrait of Jonathan Blow as well as the equally famous parody of that article, and the guy does come across as being incredibly pretentious. The more time passed, the less important it felt to go back and play it, no matter how great it was.

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Duck Soup (1933)

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The last time we watched a Marx Brothers movie was for the film class and neither of us really liked it. Still, Monkey Business isn’t generally considered the best film by the Marxes. This one is, plus the brothers are such a big deal in the history of comedy in cinema that I thought this should be obligatory viewing. Interestingly, while it is thought of as a masterpiece today and it was one of the least successful of the brothers’ movies when it was released and had a lukewarm welcome even from critics.

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Seven Beauties (1975)

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Seven Beauties is one of two films that my wife asked to add to our list by Italian director Lina Wertmüller. It is apparently quite a prominent film and represented the first time that a female director was nominated for the Best Director Award at the Oscars even though it didn’t go on to win. Unfortunately both my wife and myself had so much trouble relating to it that it’s hard to say we like it, though we do acknowledge that it’s a unique and highly distinctive film.

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The unexamined life is a life not worth living