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State of the Blog – The First Quarter of 2018

The first quarter of 2018 is squarely in the books, and a State of the Blog post here on Plot and Theme is long overdue. If you do not recall from earlier, I decided to move these from a monthly basis towards a quarterly basis, which basically just means that there’s way more to talk about. First, I’ll delve into the cool flicks that I saw early this year. Then, I’ll detail the neat things to look forward to over the next quarter (so, through June). Finally, we’ll go over some bookkeeping here on the blog.

Let’s go.

I feel like I’ve had a pretty strong start to the year. This is likely because i started th eyear off with Best Picture Film Festival, where I watched and reviewed all nine of the films nominated for Best Picture. I’ve posted all of these reviews now, plus a Top 10 list, and there really isn’t too much to complain about with the Oscars this year.

For films that were actually released this year, there’s a lot to like. Marvel started the year off with an absolute bang in Black Panther, an incredibly solid superhero film. The thing had some serious legs, and I enjoyed it thoroughly. In smaller films, I had a great time watching Annihilation and Thoroughbreds, which would be my smaller standouts from the first quarter of the year.

There’s a bunch of cool things to look forward to in the next quarter. We’ll break this down into the Big Blockbuster flicks and then smaller indies.

For the Blockbusters, this is pretty simple. Avengers has already released (I am drafting that review now; it is largely positive). May gives us Deadpool 2 and Solo: A Star Wars Story, the latter of which certainly feels more like a chore than an actual film that I am excited to see. Finally, June delivers Ocean’s Eight, The Incredibles 2, and Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom. This is the state of Blockbusters these days: each of these films is a sequel! Of them, Deadpool and The Incredibles are the major draws for me. I am on record for absolutely hating Jurassic World when it first came out, and the single rewatch did not alter anything. This next film looks like more of the same lazy monster movie and fan service garbage – but I’d love to be proven wrong.

Looking at smaller flicks, I already know that April is pretty strong. A Quiet Place was amazing, and really crushed it at the box office before all of the Avengers showed up. I’ll have a review up shortly. I am working on seeing You Were Never Really Here as well, so hopefully that works out. For may, I am looking forward to Terminal, and there’s also a strong possibility that a 70mm screening of 2001: A Space Odyssey will show somewhere near me. June has a lot of draw as well: the horror flick Hereditary creeped out everyone at SXSW, we get a Sicario sequel (different director and writer, which seems weird, but we’ll see), and also get Under the Silver Lake, the next feature from It Follows director David Robert Mitchell.

After all of this, I’ll likely spend a few weeks thinking about a “Best First Half of 2018” list and all of that. These are always popular posts and I like writing them, like thinking about the rankings and the films and why I liked them so much. So, definitely look for that.

Also, Plot and Theme is now three years old! It has over 350 posts, more thank 350K unique site visits, and although recent changes in my life (moving, new jobs, etc) have cut into the number of posts, the blog shows no sign of stopping. I’ll keep writing for the foreseeable future, because I love thinking about film and discussing the merits (or lack thereof) of each movie. Keep checking back here, reading my stuff, sharing things, and whatever else makes you happy, and I’ll keep providing you with my inane opinions.

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Derek Jacobs

Chicago,IL 60606

A website

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