My years in film 2022

Letterboxd have released their 2022 year in review. I love these roundups because they’re usually pretty great at bubbling up some gems. It’s not any one person or publication’s opinion of the top films of the year, it’s aggregate opinions across the kinds of people who like to track their film-watching across the year.

Well, I’m one of those kinds of people, so it’s probably a good time to look at my own stats for 2022.

I logged 115 films in 2022. The second-highest number of films in a year since I started tracking this a decade ago. Although technically I watched more because I don’t count the films that I watch (and rewatch, and rewatch) with my kids because that feels like I’d just be cheating my numbers.

Here are my highest-rated films that I watched in 2022 that were released 2022:

Highest-rated films from 2022

And here are my highest-rated films that I watched in 2022 from earlier:

Highest-rated films from earlier

Most of these were first-watches for me, trying to close out some obvious blindspots (I’m in my 40s and had never seen Once Upon a Time in the West). Penda’s Fen was a real standout. I watched this as part of Severin Films’ incredible box set of folk horror because it’s got some great extras, but you can just check it out for free on YouTube right now (and you should).

Apparently my most-watched actor in 2022 was Scott Adkins, the best stunt-actor working today. But my most-watched director is George Pollock, a man mostly known for directing cozy Agatha Christie adaptations.

Most-watched actor: Scott Adkins. Most-watched director: George Pollock.

I contain multitudes, I guess.

Anyway, you should follow me on Letterboxd.


Riding Japan’s 7 Star Luxury Sleeper Train | Seven Stars in Kyushu

Solo Solo Travel is one of my favourite YouTube channels to watch before bedtime. It’s a type of ASMR, I guess, like a soothing digestif to help me wind down for sleep – mostly-wordless videos of someone traveling around Japan on various forms of transport. The thing I love most about the videos are the captions the filmmaker has added to describe what they’re doing/seeing. This person is an underrated comedy genius. Perfect timing, perfect phrasing. My wife and I watched this one the other night, where the person is traveling around one of Japan’s islands on one of the most exclusive trains in the world (pretty niche content!) and belly-laughing our way through the entire thing.


Bring back personal blogging – The Verge

At the end of the day, we don’t know what is going to happen next with Twitter or any of these platforms. We don’t know what changes Web 3.0 is going to bring to the internet. We do know that we will all still be here, wanting to share our thoughts, talk about anything and everything, and commune with our people. Personal blogging is the simplest and fastest way to do all of that. 

I don’t know if blogging is as easy as The Verge are making out in this article. They talk about owning your own platform so that you can be sure that your content won’t go away. But to do that, you really need to host your own blog, and that brings its own set of headaches (Ask me what my backup strategy is for this blog! Ask me if it’s something I worry about!) And toxic social media has made me extremely reluctant to share intimate details of my life on the internet. And the whole rise of AI has made me extremely wary of contributing anything to the corpus of things that will help train them.

But, all that being said, it’s a noble goal. Godspeed.


Polygon announce a “Making of Spycraft” documentary

Oh wow! Spycraft was one of my favourite games of the 90s but it’s been pretty well forgotten by most people, despite the fact it did some really interesting things both narratively and gameplay-wise. And it had Charles Fuckin Napier!

So fair play to Polygon for going back and revisiting it now for a making-of documentary that sounds like it’s been in the works for a while. The documentary is coming in 2023 but you can watch the trailer now. And if you want to play the game, it’s available from Steam and GOG and it runs pretty well in Dosbox, even on a Mac.


Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny trailer

The trailer for Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny was released last week, and of course I went through it frame-by-frame. And since I was already going through each frame, what about putting together a collage of frames from each shot? So that’s what this is – one frame from each shot in the trailer.

Click through for a larger version (19400(!)x6576, 6.5MB).


A year of new avenues

I want to insist on an amateur internet; a garage internet; a public library internet; a kitchen table internet. At last, in 2023, I want to tell the tech CEOs and venture capitalists: pipe down. Buzz off. Go fave each other’s tweets.

With the implosion of Twitter and the move towards Mastodon and the federated web, the internet of late 2022 is feeling more and more like the internet of 2002: Ours.


Everyone Everywhere Needs Waymond Wang

This is a wonderful essay about Everything Everywhere All At Once’s portrayal of masculinity. I hadn’t conscously picked up on Waymond’s lack of a character arc, but it makes so much sense.

Also EEAAO (as no-one is calling it) was unexpectedly one of the best films I’ve seen so far this year. If you’ve been putting off watching it, please do check it out.


Did People Used To Look Older?

I was watching Thief the other night and couldn’t get over how James Caan (RIP to a real one) was only 41 in that film but looked so much older. This is a great explanation of why that is.