A Look Back at March 2021

Although things continue to be slow, I can’t help but notice the pace of high-profile releases is picking up once more. Following the much-anticipated release of Zack Snyder’s Justice League, a few more films are starting to emerge from the woodwork. Not so much over here in the U.K. where the cinemas remain closed, but a lot seems to be happening in terms of streaming, with many releases now out on Premium VOD.

There was also the small matter of the Academy Awards nominations being released, and my attempt to catch up with some of the films shortlisted. It’s been a funny old year and the nominations reflect that, with a few films that wouldn’t normally get a look in finding themselves in places of prominence. So far, I’ve only looked at Mank, which I found to be an underwhelming experience. I’m hoping to see some more nominated films in the next few weeks, in the hopes that they can win me over.

Film of the Month: Downfall (2004) – Directed by Oliver Hirschbiegel

As crazy as this sounds, my film of the month was almost Zack Snyder’s Justice League. Given how little I thought of the theatrical cut, it’s a testament to the hard work and perseverance of Snyder over the last few years, but then I thought back to how riveted I was by Downfall and I realised that Zack would be pipped at the post this month.

After reviewing a fair few World War II films in my time, I thought films documenting that particular war could no longer shock me, how wrong I was. A wonderful, yet harrowing piece of cinematic drama that shows the unravelling of one of history’s most evil minds. The fact that not a single word of dialogue was in English was ultimately immaterial to my enjoyment of it, which is the sign of an incredible film.

Regrettably, I won’t be able to provide the usual level of Academy Awards coverage this year. I simply haven’t been able to see enough of the movies shortlisted to properly comment on them, and I doubt I will have the time to now before the ceremony. I am disappointed that this is the case, as I never usually pass up an opportunity to poke fun at the Academy, but after the year we’ve had, I suppose it’s not a surprise.

This coming month, I’ll be looking at some more nominated films currently available on streaming. I’ll also be looking at some older films sent to my by my regular correspondent, Ian. I may even get around to finish The Hobbit trilogy, if I find myself with a weekend to spare…

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