Returning to the realm of cinematic consideration — as it’s been a bit and I let Commentary Conundra languish some time back. I may yet revive that on a very irregular basis but encouraged by a good friend, I shall retake the plunge into the medium that I adore and yet barely engage with regularly.

To explain — I really don’t see movies in theaters anymore, I really really don’t. Everyone should read Kevin Murphy’s brilliant book A Year at the Movies at some point if you can, because it’s a lovely celebration of the power of movies and viewing and more. But it pulls no punches when it comes to the sterile horror of the usual movie experience amid multiplexes and stadium seating, where the ticket prices for matinee showings barely differ from the regular ones and anything and everything on sale at the concession stand could buy you a full-price RIAA-approved CD just as easily. When it comes to a theater, I’ve seen Anchorman so far this year — everything and anything else, come to me, sweet DVDs, and lend me your time.

And those I see, quite a bit of. This year was the year I’ve finally seen The Manchurian Candidate (pretty good), The Third Man (entrancing), Andrei Rublev (almost crushing in its length but truly a masterpiece of flow, editing and unexpected cinematography) and La Grande Illusion (brilliantly moving), discovered the creeping horrors of Frailty and the now-a-great-period-piece Fear of a Black Hat, understood why Full Contact helped make Chow Yun Fat even more of a star than before, realized exactly why The Onion Field made a star out of James Woods in the first place, finally got my long overdue commentary and more for the peerless Ed Wood, still my favorite movie of the nineties, hands down. And more and more and more besides — I’m not a Netflix person or a renter, for better or worse I want to own DVDs (shop used, of course — the only way to go), and then I want to wait for that moment or time when I’m bored or at a loose end or suddenly seized with a desire to watch to break out a disc. Far more fun and less pressure all around.

So I’ll not be writing about new films – much. There will be the exception. But mostly, things will just come to me…and I will write.