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Ranking Disney: Frozen (2013), Part I

It must have been two years ago now, when I decided to go through and Rank all the Disney movies. Essentially, I watched all the Disney movies that existed at the time, and ranked them in the order I liked them. It was fun. Pretty simple. Not as complicated as I’d do them now. One of these years, I’ll go through and update them to make them more like Fun with Franchises.

At the time, there were only 51 Disney movies. Winnie the Pooh was the newest one. So when Wreck-It Ralph came out, I figured I had to do that one as well. So now, writing up the new Disney movie has become an annual tradition for me. I’m actually late on this one. I probably should have put this article up back in March. But whatever. It’s finally time for us to do Frozen.

I was all over this movie when it came out last year. We got a screener right after it came out, and I watched it that day, in the office. And by the time “Let It Go” happened, I was certain the movie was a top ten film for me and that both the song and the movie were going to win Oscars. All three of those things happened.

There’s something so joyous about this movie. I’m sure now as I go through I’ll tear it to pieces. But I still love it. We’ll get to my feelings about it within the rest of the Disney canon later, but in terms of a movie, this is the best pure Disney movie the studio has put out in almost 20 years. This harkens back to the Renaissance days. And we’re going to enjoy this movie that it’s one of those for the next few days, before we get into our usual end of the year festivities. So without further ado, here is Part I of Frozen.

Frozen - Title Card

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A Pictorial History of the Movies: 2013 – Gravity

This is the defining film of 2013. I know people will say 12 Years a Slave is the film of 2013, but it’s not. Gravity is that film. 12 Years is the most important film of 2013, but it’s not the film that defines 2013.

Put it this way – how many people were really excited about Gravity before it came out? I was. Shit, I called that movie 5 stars when it was supposed to come out in 2012. January 2012, I already said, “I’m so fucking in for this movie.” It’s not like it had that prerelease buzz of something like The Avengers. Or The Dark Knight. Or Avatar. This was a movie that, unless you were paying attention to it, you knew was a space movie that was coming out.

And then if fucking blew up. This movie brought people back into the theaters. The right way. Not in that, “We spent millions of dollars to market it, so people will come out the first weekend and not afterward because it’s not very good,” way. This was the, people came out, people went, “Holy fuck, that was amazing,” and then went back to see it. And they told their friends, “Holy fuck, did you see Gravity? You need to go right now and see that fucking movie.” That’s why this is the most defining movie of 2013. Read the rest of this page »

A Pictorial History of the Movies: 2012 – The Avengers

At this point, pretty much any movie that cracks the top five all-time box office upon initial release is most likely going to be considered the film that defines its year. Though, in this particular case, it actually represents a larger trend that I’ve been discussing, which is superhero movies (Spider-Man, then The Dark Knight).

Starting with Harry Potter, franchises became the major form of big budget movie for Hollywood, and they haven’t turned back since. The trend has only taken even more of a stranglehold on the marketplace since then. Now, everything that comes out has a subtitle, designed to spawn a series of films. Movies can’t be one-offs anymore.

But The Avengers actually represents a very specific twist in the superhero genre, one that will define the next ten years of Hollywood, which is the trend of world building. And that’s what we’re going to talk about today. Read the rest of this page »

A Pictorial History of the Movies: 2011 – Bridesmaids

How can it not be?

This was the breakout hit of 2011. This came out to little fanfare, really, and then gradually, through word of mouth, became one of the biggest comedy hits of all time.

The important thing about this film is the fact that it really brought women to the forefront of comedy. It’s not that women were never present in comedy. You think of writers like Ruth Gordon and Elaine May, and stars like Lucille Ball and so on. It’s just that, over the past 20 years, women have become marginalized. They’re always playing a type, or stuck playing the girlfriend role. Especially has comedy has become… whatever the hell it’s become. That dumb, raunchy, sophomoric Apatow shit. Which is so clearly male dominated.

So the real importance of this film is that it brought women back to mainstream comedy and allowed them to do the kind of comedy men do and have a lot of people enjoy it. Read the rest of this page »

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