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State of the Blog – January 2016


I am going to keep the January 2016 State of the Blog a little shorter than normal, because I am very close to finishing up my version of “the best 10 films I saw of 2015” type post, and it will include a lot of sum-ups and ideas that would otherwise be repeated here. So, I’ll use this update to talk about things that I am looking forward to in January (there’s not a lot), and how I will use that opportunity to slightly change the focus of Plot and Theme, for at least the foreseeable dregs of January / February.

First, January doesn’t offer much of value with respect to theatrical releases. The main attraction is undoubtedly The Revenant, which I will be seeing this weekend after it enters its wide release. I am stoked for this movie. There really isn’t much beyond that, unfortunately. There’s the YA-adaptation The 5th Wave and a few supernatural duds that the studios love to bury in January like The Forest and The Boy. And then we have a couple of comedies like Dirty Grandpa and Ride Along 2 and some animated films, something called Norm of the North and the third entry in the Kung Fu Panda franchise. Of all of these, there is a reasonable chance that Dirty Grandpa and Kung Fu Panda 3 are quality films. You never know which Robert De Niro will show up, but the good one showed up for The Intern, so he may show up again. And, Dreamworks can usually put together a sequel, so Panda might be solid as well. The only other film that has my attention is 13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi, and not for the right reasons. This is Michael Bay attempting to be serious with a war movie based on a true story. How did Pearl Harbor turn out, again?

With only one movie that I can guarantee I will see in theatres, and at most three that I will see, it strikes me that I will not have very many new movies to review in January (and February is similar, though offers the respite of Deadpool!). As such, I am going to shift my focus slightly towards the Classic Review Friday posts and the larger-scale essays that I have been promising. The Don Bluth series will conclude on Wednesday, and then I will get to work on polishing up the other ideas that I have mentioned before. And, as for the “classic reviews”, I want to hit Under the Skin and Ferris Bueller’s Day Off for sure, and maybe I will make my first attempt at a Stanley Kubrick film!

Followers grew nicely during December, so keep up the sharings and likes and whatnot. Look for my review on The Hateful Eight later this evening, my top films of 2015 tomorrow, and the aforementioned Don Bluth piece on Wednesday!

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Derek Jacobs

Chicago,IL 60606

A website

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