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🎬 "You see gum on the street? Leave it there. It isn't free candy."

🎬 "You see gum on the street? Leave it there. It isn't free candy."
By Eric Johnson • Issue #103 • View online
As you’ve probably noticed, I’m rewatching my way through the Marvel movies in the order they were released. It’s a lot, but even at 23 movies, watching the MCU canon feels attainable … at least, it does until you consider the TV shows, which I am almost definitely skipping. Seven seasons of Agents of SHIELD, two seasons of Agent Carter, several seasons of shows like Jessica Jones and Daredevil on Netflix, and now there are going to be TEN ADDITIONAL SERIES on Disney+. And ten new Star Wars series, too. I guess Disney is hoping we’re cooped up in our homes for a lot longer!
In other news, I’m booking meetings left and right at my podcasting company BumbleCast (sign up for our newsletter here), and we’re currently running a survey to understand how our audience actually uses social media. If you like podcasts, please take the survey here.

🎅 Elf
When I reviewed Zoolander back in October, I singled out Ben Stiller’s earnest commitment to the part as that movie’s strongest asset, and the same is absolutely true of (Zoolander co-star) Will Ferrell’s starring role in the disarmingly wholesome Elf.
Not unlike Paddington, Buddy the Elf is new in town and the source of many hijinks, but Ferrell is, a) very tall, which is funny; and b) completely, destructively clueless about the ways his foreign behavior is disturbing to average New Yorkers, which is funnier still. The supporting cast is also on point, including a pre-New Girl Zooey Deschanel and a pre-Game of Thrones Peter Dinklage, the former playing a surprisingly cynical woman and latter still in the “playing every dwarf in Hollywood” phase of his career.
It’s kind of wild that the same guy who made Swingers, Iron Man and the Mandalorian (Jon Favreau) also made an extremely rewatchable and comfy Christmas movie, but here we are! Recommended. ★★★½
Elf (2003) Official Trailer #1 - Will Ferrell, Zooey Deschanel Christmas Movie HD
Elf (2003) Official Trailer #1 - Will Ferrell, Zooey Deschanel Christmas Movie HD
Elf is currently streaming on fuboTV, Starz, DirecTV, and Sling TV.
🧝‍♂️ Thor: The Dark World
Thor: The Dark World is emblematic of some of the MCU’s worst impulses.
Despite some great visuals and a few very funny quips, the tone is all over the place, the CGI action is too bouncy to be believed, and the villain — despite being portrayed by a talented actor, Christopher Eccleston — is instantly forgettable.
I prefer the first Thor film for its epic fantasy aspirations and especially the third film for its inspired sense of humor; this ungainly middle child only half-works because of the chemistry among its actors, including a returning Tom Hiddleston as Thor’s brother Loki and Natalie Portman as his love interest, Jane. Apart from setting up some of the funniest bits of Thor: Ragnarok, and potentially laying the groundwork for Portman’s upcoming turn as the Mighty Thor, this one is eminently skippable. ★★★
Thor: The Dark World Official Trailer HD
Thor: The Dark World Official Trailer HD
Thor: The Dark World is currently streaming on Disney+, fuboTV, FXNow, DirecTV, and Sling TV.
🏍 Easy Rider
I could easily imagine Easy Rider being one person’s favorite movie of all time, and another person’s least favorite. For me, it falls somewhere in the middle: An impressionistic, artistic picture with avant-garde editing style, a killer soundtrack, and characters whose unexplored depths keep the audience at arm’s length.
More than anything else, it’s a time capsule of the southwestern and southern US in the late 60s, and a snapshot of three young actors on the verge of fame — Dennis Hopper, Peter Fonda, and Jack Nicholson. As a movie, though, it doesn’t really cohere for me, which is a shame. In my head, I compare it to a pre-modern sculpture: I appreciate its historical significance, but I’d rather spend my time admiring a Michelangelo.
I imagine that, in 1969, the sweeping shots of the beautiful deserts and mountains were a revelation for many Americans, but I’d sooner watch a documentary about the land than take this easy ride again. That said, there’s enough I liked here that I’d cautiously recommend the movie for students of film history and/or folks looking for a movie that’s truly different. ★★★
Easy Rider | Original Trailer [HD] | Coolidge Corner Theatre
Easy Rider | Original Trailer [HD] | Coolidge Corner Theatre
Easy Rider isn’t currently streaming anywhere, but you can rent or buy it on these platforms.
🔢 Every Movie I've Seen in 2020, Ranked
(new additions in bold)
  1. The Godfather
  2. 12 Angry Men
  3. The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring
  4. Get Out
  5. Do the Right Thing
  6. Knives Out
  7. Parasite
  8. Arrival
  9. My Neighbor Totoro
  10. Raiders of the Lost Ark
  11. Airplane!
  12. The Silence of the Lambs
  13. Dick Johnson Is Dead
  14. The Lives of Others
  15. Hot Fuzz
  16. Boys State
  17. Hamilton
  18. Groundhog Day
  19. All About Eve
  20. Ocean’s Eleven
  21. West Side Story
  22. The Avengers
  23. The Farewell
  24. Vertigo
  25. 12 Years a Slave
  26. Monty Python and the Holy Grail
  27. What We Do in the Shadows
  28. Spotlight
  29. Booksmart
  30. Her
  31. Moana
  32. Won’t You Be My Neighbor?
  33. The Matrix
  34. Moonrise Kingdom
  35. Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban
  36. Your Name.
  37. North by Northwest
  38. Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade
  39. The Incredibles
  40. Lost in Translation
  41. Looper
  42. Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog
  43. The Wrong Trousers
  44. The Old Guard
  45. American Psycho
  46. Thank You For Smoking
  47. Little Women
  48. Marriage Story
  49. Portrait of a Lady on Fire
  50. La La Land
  51. Sunset Boulevard
  52. Ford v Ferrari
  53. A Fish Called Wanda
  54. Bringing Up Baby
  55. Gremlins
  56. Apocalypse Now
  57. The Hidden Fortress
  58. Hell or High Water
  59. Moneyball
  60. Hacksaw Ridge
  61. Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping
  62. The Lunchbox
  63. Heat
  64. Little Miss Sunshine
  65. A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood
  66. Coming to America
  67. Hustlers
  68. Shrek
  69. Wet Hot American Summer
  70. It Follows
  71. Dolemite Is My Name
  72. Good Will Hunting
  73. Palm Springs
  74. The Grapes of Wrath
  75. Fantasia 2000
  76. First Cow
  77. Kedi
  78. Honey Boy
  79. The Great Escape
  80. Ed Wood
  81. Isle of Dogs
  82. Annihilation
  83. The Hunt for Red October
  84. Wordplay
  85. Boyhood
  86. It Happened One Night
  87. The Hunger Games
  88. 1917
  89. Once Upon a Time … in Hollywood
  90. The Philadelphia Story
  91. Dark Waters
  92. Elf
  93. Hail, Caesar!
  94. The Death of Stalin
  95. The Irishman
  96. Zoolander
  97. 50/50
  98. Paddington
  99. Hannah and Her Sisters
  100. Horse Feathers
  101. Enemy of the State
  102. Captain Phillips
  103. Uncut Gems
  104. Independence Day
  105. Borat Subsequent Moviefilm: Delivery of Prodigious Bribe to American Regime for Make Benefit Once Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan
  106. 9 to 5
  107. Frost/Nixon
  108. The Incredibles 2
  109. How the West Was Won
  110. Almost Famous
  111. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone
  112. Broadway Melody of 1940
  113. Bad Education
  114. Godzilla
  115. Just Mercy
  116. Kahaani
  117. Iron Man 3
  118. Midnight in Paris
  119. Da 5 Bloods
  120. High Fidelity
  121. Guardians of the Galaxy
  122. My Fair Lady
  123. Iron Man
  124. The Invisible Man
  125. Iron Man 2
  126. The Hateful Eight
  127. Happy Gilmore
  128. Gates of Heaven
  129. Emma.
  130. Men in Black
  131. Thor
  132. Birds of Prey (and the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn)
  133. Home Alone
  134. Gremlins 2: The New Batch
  135. Batman: The Dark Knight Returns
  136. Braveheart
  137. Bicycle Thieves
  138. Captain America: The First Avenger
  139. Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy
  140. Bottle Rocket
  141. The Addams Family
  142. Frankenstein
  143. Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs
  144. Hugo
  145. All the Money in the World
  146. Planes, Trains, and Automobiles
  147. My Big Fat Greek Wedding
  148. Live From the Space Stage: A Halyx Story
  149. John Mulaney & The Sack Lunch Bunch
  150. Onward
  151. Hidden Figures
  152. Pain and Glory
  153. Bambi
  154. The Great Dictator
  155. Lemony Snicket’s a Series of Unfortunate Events
  156. Anastasia
  157. Easy Rider
  158. Hot Rod
  159. Borat: Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan
  160. Animal House
  161. Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire
  162. You’ve Got Mail
  163. The 39 Steps
  164. Thor: The Dark World
  165. The Princess and the Frog
  166. Elysium
  167. (500) Days of Summer
  168. Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets
  169. Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street
  170. Modern Romance
  171. The Incredible Hulk
  172. H.M.S. Pinafore
  173. Shakespeare in Love
  174. Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story
  175. 3:10 to Yuma
  176. The Big Country
  177. Ghost
  178. 28 Weeks Later
  179. History of the World: Part I
  180. The African Queen
  181. Greyhound
  182. Bamboozled
  183. Bullitt
  184. Dracula
  185. The Bachelor and the Bobby-Soxer
  186. Bride of Frankenstein
  187. Howard the Duck
  188. Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom
  189. The Descendants
  190. The Hangover
  191. Joker
  192. Kingpin
  193. 28 Days Later
  194. Bridesmaids
  195. The Great Gatsby
  196. 13 Assassins
  197. Creature From the Black Lagoon
  198. Benny & Joon
  199. Bad Moms
  200. High Anxiety
  201. Kentucky Fried Movie
  202. Hang ‘Em High
  203. Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull
  204. Ice Age
  205. Romancing the Stone
  206. Crocodile Dundee
  207. The 40-Year-Old Virgin
  208. Hard Ticket to Hawaii
  209. Gods of Egypt
  210. The Gentlemen
  211. Ace Ventura: Pet Detective
  212. Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band
  213. The Last Airbender
  214. Manos: The Hands of Fate
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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