Sunday, December 30, 2012

CR5FC Year in Review: 2012

It's been another fantastic year for Film Club.

While it's true that we all slowed down from last year, it's also true that last year we posted a ton. Who knows if we'll ever reach those heights again?

I'll probably post quantity stats after the new year. Right now, I want to focus on the highlights of 2012 as experienced by Film Club.


Arthur stepped up participation in CR5FC-FB. I hold out secret hope that we'll get him blogging in 2013.

Jerzy's biggest contribution to Film Club was starting Book Club, which has re-directed many of the hours that I would have spent watching films. Thanks for almost ruining Film Club for me, Jerzy.

Lisa gets credit for hanging around. Every once in a while, we'd get a shout from the gorge. Hopefully, this continues. I'm still waiting on a Wreck-It Ralph review. :)

Alex is a most welcome new addition. Just when I thought that we'd stalled out on new members, Alex showed up to give us a fresh voice. I've been bad at "conversations" posts this year so I haven't interacted with Alex's posts like I should have. Nevertheless, I've enjoyed each one and hope that we get many more in the new year.

I've said this before, I think, but I'll confess again that it took me a while to fully accept Adrienne in Film Club. Jason had been mentioning her repeatedly before she became an official member, but I didn't pay much attention. All of that non-film talk on her blog clogged up what could have been a great pure film blog! Fortunately for me, I've gotten over this silly hang-up. I can even make a second confession. Sometimes, I like Adrienne's non-film posts better than her film posts. My favorite post of hers from all of last year, though, is the short post in which she puzzles through why her husband loved Three Kings. Here, the personal and the film talk is indistinguishable. It's exactly the sort of personal film writing that I love. In which it is acknowledged that what we're doing in Film Club (by this, I mean both watching movies and writing about them, but primarily the watching part) is so much more than any so-called objective viewing. Three Kings is given more importance than it can possibly bear and a viewing of it becomes a wrestling match with the present understanding of the past instead of a trifling entertainment that is easily dismissed. Film watching becomes an exercise in imagined habitation of someone else's perspective. Besides that post I singled out, Adrienne wins the prize for being a lot nicer than the rest of us dirtbags in Film Club.

I'm pretty sure that it was Ben that instigated the mandatory viewing last year. I'm giving him credit for it so I hope I'm right. It was a great idea while it lasted and is Ben's top contribution to Film Club even if Ink did kill my computer. Ben's worst contribution to the Club? Introducing his girlfriends to CR5FC. One of my new year's resolutions will be to stop spending any time thinking about Lena Dunham. I also want to blame Ben for the hipster debacle, but I think that one was started by Brandon before I made it into something ridiculous.

I probably ought to give Ben credit for luring some of us over to Twitter. The credit goes to Chris, though, for keeping up the funny on Twitter. Not that it's always movie related, but it's almost always been fun. Chris's real top contribution of the year was the unveiling of his previous life as a professional reviewer. I wish I had a book of collected essays by Chris H on the films of Chris Rock. Of course, I could also always count on Chris to keep the focus on Breaking Bad when things got too filmy around the Clubhouse. I only wish that I could keep up with all of the TV that he watches so that we could have more TV Club interaction. The Twilight Zone blog (starting soon!) is going to be fun.

Jason's big contribution to Film Club was the opening of his optometry office. Ever since he diagnosed all of the eye problems in the Club, we've all been wearing glasses all the time. Swapping certain glasses for other glasses. Stomping on glasses. Wearing two pairs of glasses at the same time. Wearing glasses upside down. Wearing tinted glasses. Trading glasses with one another. Glasses, glasses, glasses. I've enjoyed all of Jason's posts, but I'm still waiting for him to wean himself off of Flixster and become more healthy and regular with his dumps.

Finally, Jeff and Brandon. Even without a final count, it's clear that these two are the reigning posting kings of Film Club this year. Jeff deserves praise for completing his 30s-50s project. Of course, Brandon has to one-up him by being ahead by an entire decade, successfully completing his 60s project. Between the two of them, the less prodigious of us have been kept stimulated by their steady flow of content. Well done, gents!

There were lots of great discussions throughout the year. Plenty of films got run through the Club mill. We brought up the old dead horses. We looked for new dead horses. As usual, there were repeated outbreaks of that perennial plague which is arguing about horror films and more generally about film content and where to draw the imaginary line in the imaginary sand.

Film Club successfully completed two major projects collectively over the year. I think that Brandon led the way on both. I am, of course, speaking of the All-time Top Ten and the Top 30 Aughts Lists. Really fantastic output from everyone during the times in which these lists were percolating.

And the stupidest, silliest group project of the year? One which I hope will stay active throughout 2013? You guessed it. BOO!

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