What I Watched // Week 1: Jul 21-27




New Netflix 5/5 additions: I’m not absolutely sure, but I believe 12 Angry Men was only recently added to Netflix. 12 Angry Men is a really important film for me, which sounds kind of corny. It was one of the first “important” films I had ever seen. It was one of the first films that left me thinking about how much I was really starting to love movies and theory. It’s one of those classics that all film students have to watch but it’s still one of the films I would probably list on my top 20 of all time. Without giving too much away, it’s the story of a jury made up of twelve men who must unanimously decide whether or not a teenage boy is guilty of murder. The men must face their own morals and beliefs to decide whether this boy will be sent free or sentenced to death.

Black Girl is a film I watched for the first time for a class I took on third cinema last semester. Black Girl tells the story of a Senegalese woman named Diouana who moves to France to become a nanny. Unfortunately, Diouana’s new life in France is not at all as she expected and she finds that she is treated more as a servant than as a nanny. As somewhat spoiled by the film’s poster, there is a highly emotional and traumatic moment in the film during which the entire tone changes and the consequences of particular actions are felt. The film deals with aspects of colonialism as well as instances of alarming racism. I think it is an important (albeit rather difficult) film to watch, especially if you’re someone who is beginning to delve into studies of post-colonial identities and ramifications as well as politically driven filmmaking.

Particle Fever is the only one of these three that I watched for the first time this week. It was great and I loved it, but it really made me sad. It reminded me of the time in my life when I spent months reading and dissecting physics textbooks and taking notes on string theory and supersymmetry. But wow, yeah, really fantastic documentary. The film makes all of this particle physics business easy to understand while still managing to educate and fascinate. I have a hard time separating myself from the subject matter (I used to dream that I’d one day work at CERN too) so maybe I’m just overly emotional about it. Someone else watch it and tell me if I’m wrong. Seriously, let me know.

One more, and not from Netflix this time…



I actually left my house and went to a real life movie theater this week. Against my judgement and based on the insistence of my friends, I saw Lucy. I like Scarlett Johansson (who doesn’t?) and, while I don’t have particularly strong feelings toward him, I always thought I liked Luc Besson, too. I guess the good news is that I liked Lucy more than I thought I would. For one, the concept is great for a science fiction/action film: through an unfortunate series of events, Lucy gets involved in a strange drug ring and, inevitably, things go ever so horribly wrong. Lucy soon discovers that there are drugs leaking into her body allowing her to access previously unactivated parts of her brain. Things are alright (but wildly silly – still not sure if it’s meant to be taken seriously or not) for a while but Lucy eventually starts to seem like a weird version of Tree of Life…and I didn’t even really like Tree of Life. Overall, Lucy was entertaining, but mostly just a strong “meh” from this girl.

Wow, I am awkwardly bad at this.


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