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🎬 “He’s invisible, that’s what’s the matter with him.”

🎬 “He’s invisible, that’s what’s the matter with him.”
By Eric Johnson • Issue #92 • View online
What a week! After more than five years, yesterday was my last day working at Vox Media. I’m going to try to take today off (maybe watch a movie or two), but I’m working on something new that I can’t wait to share with you. Watch this space.

🎭 Shakespeare in Love
Shakespeare in Love is a passable fictionalization of how William Shakespeare wrote Romeo & Juliet, but its triumph at the 1999 Oscars is reflective of Hollywood at its most corrupt.
This is a blandly directed, extremely unsubtle movie. It has a killer cast that includes Gwyneth Paltrow, Colin Firth, and Geoffrey Rush, but none of the actors — save for Judi Dench, who plays Queen Elizabeth I — are able to elevate the predictable script. I could recognize, while watching this movie, that it wanted me to enjoy its many gettable references to Shakespeare’s plays, but instead, it left me feeling like I’d watched a mediocre episode of Family Guy set in early modern Europe.
(How does an adequate movie like this win Best Picture over Saving Private Ryan? Blame convicted rapist Harvey Weinstein.)
Let’s end on something nice. Uh … the costumes are good! Skip this and watch West Side Story again instead. ★★★
Shakespeare in Love Official Trailer #1 - Tom Wilkinson Movie (1998) HD
Shakespeare in Love Official Trailer #1 - Tom Wilkinson Movie (1998) HD
I watched Shakespeare in Love on DVD, but it’s currently streaming on Starz and DirecTV.
🎥 Ed Wood
Filmed in gorgeous black and white, Ed Wood is a tribute to Hollywood weirdos from one of our most popular weirdos working today, Tim Burton.
A very young Johnny Depp plays Wood, full name Edward D. Wood, Jr., who made the exploitation film Glen or Glenda and the so-bad-it’s-good sci-fi Plan 9 from Outer Space. Much like The Disaster Artist and Dolemite is My Name, this is a meta-Hollywood movie that mines a cult entertainer’s career for universally relatable truths, and it succeeds admirably.
The cast is stacked: In addition to Depp, you have Bill Murray, Sarah Jessica Parker, and — most importantly — Martin Landau as frequent Wood collaborator and former Dracula star Bela Lugosi. He is really good. I loved the sympathetic eye with which Burton captures Wood and Lugosi’s loneliness and the contrasting ways the two men try to find some solace in a world that doesn’t understand them. Recommended. ★★★★
Ed Wood - Official Trailer
Ed Wood - Official Trailer
I watched Ed Wood on Apple TV, and it’s not currently streaming for free anywhere. But you can rent or buy it here.
🕶 The Invisible Man
The Invisible Man has surprisingly good effects for 1933, and a lead performance by Claude Rains that reminded me at times of Heath Ledger’s iconic Joker from The Dark Knight. For that performance alone, this movie is worth seeing.
Based on the H.G. Wells novel, it starts off a little silly — there’s a loud family that runs an inn in rural England, a clueless cop, a mad scientist who’s been missing for a month, and a doting woman waiting for him to come back. The descent into darkness, which we’re told is what’s happening to Rains’ mental health, is quick and brutal.
I didn’t get especially invested in William Harrigan’s Professor Kemp or the other side characters here, but I didn’t need to. More than Dracula or Frankenstein, which I appreciated more than I enjoyed, The Invisible Man actually feels like a menace. Recommended. ★★★½
The Invisible Man (1933) - I'll Show You Who I Am Scene (1/10) | Movieclips
The Invisible Man (1933) - I'll Show You Who I Am Scene (1/10) | Movieclips
I watched The Invisible Man on Blu-Ray, but it’s currently streaming on Peacock and IndieFlix.
🔢 Every Movie I've Seen in 2020, Ranked
(new additions in bold)
  1. The Godfather
  2. 12 Angry Men
  3. Do the Right Thing
  4. Knives Out
  5. Parasite
  6. Arrival
  7. My Neighbor Totoro
  8. Raiders of the Lost Ark
  9. Airplane!
  10. The Lives of Others
  11. Hot Fuzz
  12. Boys State
  13. Hamilton
  14. Groundhog Day
  15. All About Eve
  16. West Side Story
  17. The Farewell
  18. 12 Years a Slave
  19. Monty Python and the Holy Grail
  20. What We Do in the Shadows
  21. Spotlight
  22. Booksmart
  23. Her
  24. Won’t You Be My Neighbor?
  25. Moonrise Kingdom
  26. Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban
  27. Your Name.
  28. North by Northwest
  29. Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade
  30. The Incredibles
  31. Looper
  32. Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog
  33. The Wrong Trousers
  34. The Old Guard
  35. Thank You For Smoking
  36. Little Women
  37. Marriage Story
  38. Portrait of a Lady on Fire
  39. La La Land
  40. Sunset Boulevard
  41. Ford v Ferrari
  42. A Fish Called Wanda
  43. Bringing Up Baby
  44. Gremlins
  45. Apocalypse Now
  46. The Hidden Fortress
  47. Hell or High Water
  48. Moneyball
  49. Hacksaw Ridge
  50. Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping
  51. The Lunchbox
  52. Heat
  53. Little Miss Sunshine
  54. A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood
  55. Coming to America
  56. Hustlers
  57. Shrek
  58. Wet Hot American Summer
  59. Dolemite Is My Name
  60. Good Will Hunting
  61. Palm Springs
  62. The Grapes of Wrath
  63. Fantasia 2000
  64. First Cow
  65. Kedi
  66. Honey Boy
  67. The Great Escape
  68. Ed Wood
  69. Annihilation
  70. The Hunt for Red October
  71. Wordplay
  72. Boyhood
  73. 1917
  74. Once Upon a Time … in Hollywood
  75. The Philadelphia Story
  76. Dark Waters
  77. Hail, Caesar!
  78. The Death of Stalin
  79. 50/50
  80. Hannah and Her Sisters
  81. Horse Feathers
  82. Enemy of the State
  83. Captain Phillips
  84. Uncut Gems
  85. Independence Day
  86. 9 to 5
  87. Frost/Nixon
  88. The Incredibles 2
  89. How the West Was Won
  90. Almost Famous
  91. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone
  92. Bad Education
  93. Godzilla
  94. Just Mercy
  95. Midnight in Paris
  96. Da 5 Bloods
  97. High Fidelity
  98. Guardians of the Galaxy
  99. My Fair Lady
  100. The Invisible Man
  101. The Hateful Eight
  102. Happy Gilmore
  103. Gates of Heaven
  104. Emma.
  105. Birds of Prey (and the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn)
  106. Home Alone
  107. Gremlins 2: The New Batch
  108. Batman: The Dark Knight Returns
  109. Braveheart
  110. Bicycle Thieves
  111. Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy
  112. Frankenstein
  113. Hugo
  114. All the Money in the World
  115. My Big Fat Greek Wedding
  116. Live From the Space Stage: A Halyx Story
  117. John Mulaney & The Sack Lunch Bunch
  118. Onward
  119. Hidden Figures
  120. Pain and Glory
  121. Bambi
  122. The Great Dictator
  123. Lemony Snicket’s a Series of Unfortunate Events
  124. Anastasia
  125. Hot Rod
  126. Borat: Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan
  127. Animal House
  128. You’ve Got Mail
  129. The 39 Steps
  130. (500) Days of Summer
  131. Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets
  132. Modern Romance
  133. Shakespeare in Love
  134. Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story
  135. 3:10 to Yuma
  136. The Big Country
  137. Ghost
  138. 28 Weeks Later
  139. History of the World: Part I
  140. The African Queen
  141. Greyhound
  142. Bamboozled
  143. Bullitt
  144. Dracula
  145. The Bachelor and the Bobby-Soxer
  146. Bride of Frankenstein
  147. Howard the Duck
  148. Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom
  149. The Descendants
  150. The Hangover
  151. Joker
  152. Kingpin
  153. 28 Days Later
  154. Bridesmaids
  155. The Great Gatsby
  156. 13 Assassins
  157. Creature From the Black Lagoon
  158. High Anxiety
  159. Kentucky Fried Movie
  160. Hang ‘Em High
  161. Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull
  162. Ice Age
  163. Romancing the Stone
  164. Crocodile Dundee
  165. The 40-Year-Old Virgin
  166. Hard Ticket to Hawaii
  167. Gods of Egypt
  168. The Gentlemen
  169. Ace Ventura: Pet Detective
  170. Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band
  171. The Last Airbender
Did you enjoy this issue?
Eric Johnson

I'm reviewing every movie I watch, and watching every movie I own. Settle in, this is going to take a while.

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