I just tallied up the number of books I’ve read and movies I’ve watched for the year, and I’m at 50 for each. Last year I read 70 books according to this, which also lists this year’s books read, and watched 68 movies according to this list I compiled on Listography.
The list of this year’s movies can be found here. After each one, I put the number of asterisks for how I rated the movie: *- abominable, ** below fair, *** fair, **** good, and very good *****.
Here are the 12 that I rated with five *****
- La Vie En Rose *****
- Blade Runner: The Final Cut *****
- Man On Wire *****
- I’ve Loved You So Long *****
- Rambo *****
- Notes on a Scandal *****
- The Visitor *****
- The Lives of Others *****
- Doubt *****
- All Quiet on the Western Front *****
- Frost/Nixon *****
- Tell No One *****
Out of those, half are foreign movies (in bold), and out of those six, I highly recommend I’ve Loved You So Long for the performance of Kristin Scott Thomas (she also has a supporting role in Tell No One) and The Lives of Others for the performance of Ulrich Mühe.
Out of the 50 books, the five-starred reviews are a lot less with only eight books that passed muster for me. Four are by Agatha Christie: The Mysterious Affair at Styles, The Murder of Roger Ackroyd, The Murder at the Vicarage and Murder on the Orient Express. Two are by Arthur Conan Doyle: A Study In Scarlet and The Sign of Four, and one is by Donald E. Westlake, writing under the pseudonym of Richard Stark, with his first Parker novel, The Hunter.
The last one I technically gave a 4.5, but bump it up to a 5, because it is by an independent author and an online acquaintance of mine, Robert Kroese. The book is called Mercury Falls. My review is here; the book’s website, here. Out of all the books I’ve read this year, it probably was the nicest surprise, because I’ve read Kroese’s blog, Mattress Police, for a few years, and it was good to see that he could pull off such an accomplished novel. Sometimes with bloggers that you like, you’re not sure if they can pull off a novel too (I mean, you know they’re good writers, but to put together a novel is another thing entirely), but Kroese shows that it can be done and with quite good results too.
I’ll leave you with the trailer for the two movies I mentioned earlier, first, I’ve Loved You Too Long and then The Lives of Others:
This post also can be found on my main blog, an unfinished person (in an unfinished universe). If you are interested in getting a more complete picture of this unfinished person, you can subscribe to that blog, if you so choose.