Maybe it’s the escapism, putting my mind into a different scenario each time the lights dim and the credits begin. Perhaps it’s the shared experience of seeing movies with others. After all, scientists say we all tend to blink at the same time when we sit together watching movies. But for whatever reason, I’ve been drawn to movies all my life at an almost obsessive level.
After more than a year of insane political discourse — pre and post election — it’s good to divert our attention to something a bit less agonizing. But uh-oh, my favorite movies of 2016 also carry political and social baggage. Maybe that’s just a marquee of the times we live in now. We are lucky to live in a society where art can be a protest and a protester can create art. Enough with the previews; here are the five films that captured my attention this year.
35 years ago my not-yet roommate was belting a song on our college quad about a guy who died in a South African prison. “Who sings about stuff like that?” I wondered.
Peter Gabriel sings about stuff like that.
On that same quad, someone’s radio was playing a boppin’ song from a British band and to this day I remember my introduction to Sting as he sang with his band The Police.
Sting also sings politically charged songs. Peter Gabriel also sings boppin’ songs. They’re on tour together and I got to witness their synthesis last night at The Palace.
“Buckingham Palace?” my cousin Keith joked via text. No, although they’re both British, this was at The Palace of Auburn Hills, Michigan.
The early reviews are in!
So far, Hope’s Diamond is a hit.
HOPE COMES TO DETROIT
Detroit is a town in need of Hope, and in Rodney Curtis’ world, Hope comes in the form of Baseball. If you love Detroit, Baseball and Hope, you will enjoy this delightful little book.
Welcome to my list of favorite films from last year. I’ve been compiling these since back in the 1990s when I used to just email them to friends. Before that, I had actual face-to-face conversations about movies. Thank goodness those aren’t recorded. I remember once telling high school pals Danny Baron and Jeff Dorchen (director and co-writers, respectively, of the upcoming Brie Larson musical comedy Basmati Blues) that I really enjoyed Olivia Newton John’s terribly maligned Xanadu.
At some point or another, most TV shows jump the shark. And from there on in, you just know the end is nigh.
Our favorite programs, those that have stood the test of time, know how to avoid that one little slip. But if they jump, they somehow manage to pull on their big-boy water skies and jump right back over the shark cage.