I have always wanted to do a «monthly favourites» type of post on this blog, but I kept putting it off some reason or the other. Last year, though, I finally decided to do it. I will be doing one of these every month (or every two months) and I will include literally everything that I loved or made me happy during that time, be it a film, a song, a TV show or anything else. Here are my August and September favourites. Prepare yourselves. There's A LOT of them.
1. Elite (2018-)
The first season of Elite was amazing, but the second one was even better. I loved every single thing about it! Even the things I didn't like I loved (if that makes sense). My babies Omar and Ander had more screen time together, even though their relationship wasn't always unicorns and rainbows. Guzman and Nadia FINALLY got together, which made me very happy. I love the relationship between Lucrecia and Valerio, even though they're brother and sister (excuse me, medio hermanos!). I know it's wrong, but I can't help it. They're perfect for each other! They reminded me of Cesare & Lucrezia from The Borgias, which I loved and miss terribly.
What else? Oh, I CANNOT stand Cayetana, I still hate Polo, and I used to hate Samuel and Carla, but after season 2 I'm not so sure anymore. I'm kind of in love with them now. I would never in a million years picture them together, but they're actually perfect for each other. They sort of complete each other in a way. And I think the first time Carla has ever showed some real, genuine emotion and feelings towards someone was with Samuel.
Recently, I lot of Sam & Grizz videos have been recommended to me on YouTube, so I became curious to know who they were and what show they were from. I found out they were from a Netflix show called The Society, so I went and watched the show. And now I'm obsessed.
The Society is about a group of teenagers who return home after a cancelled school trip and realize that everyone else is gone. Their town appears to be surrounded by a dense forest, and the outside world apparently no longer exists and cannot be contacted by phone or Internet. In order to survive, they have to come up with their own rules and learn to run their own community, where resources are limited. It's sort of like Lord of the Flies, only they're not British school boys, they're not on an island and they don't have to hunt for their food.
3. Never Look Away (2018)Never Look Away is a German film about a young artist (played by Tom Schilling, one of my favourite actors) tormented by his experiences as a child during World War II, who is struggling to find his voice and have some kind of artistic breakthrough. And as fate would have, he ends up falling in love and marrying the daughter of the Nazi doctor who had deemed his aunt schizophrenic, ordered her forced sterilization and ultimately sent her to a camp to be killed.
If you haven't seen Never Look Away yet, I urge you to watch it. It's beautifully shot, the cinematography is absolutely gorgeous — it's Caleb Deschanel, so of course it would be — and the entire cast is simply outstanding. Tom Schilling is one of the best actors of his generation, and I was completely mesmerized by his performance in this film. As of you now, it stands as my number one favourite film EVER. It's honestly the best film I have ever seen in my entire life. It's one of those films that, even though it's three hours long, you wish it was longer. The story is so compelling and so beautiful that you just don't want it to end. If you look up the definition of «masterpiece» in the dictionary, I guarantee you will find Never Look Away right next to it.
4. Lust, Caution (2007)
I had a World War II movie marathon back in August and Lust, Caution was one of the films of that genre that I saw. It's loosely based on the story of a group of Chinese university students who plot to assassinate a high-ranking special agent working for the puppet government during the Japanese occupation of Shanghai in 1942. They decide to use one of their group, an attractive young woman, to lure the agent into a honey trap, but things get complicated because she becomes too emotionally involved and cannot carry out their plan properly.
Lust, Caution captivated me from beginning to end, and it has become, without a doubt, one of my top 10 favourite films of all time. It's a visually stunning film, and everyone in the cast is phenomenal, especially Tang Wei, who is simply mesmerizing in the lead role.
5. The Chinese Widow (2017)
The Chinese Widow was another film I watched during my World War II movie marathon. I had never heard of such a film (maybe because it's a Chinese film, even though it stars Emile Hirsch, who is American, and was directed by Bille August, who is Danish), but I loved it so much. It's about an American Air Force pilot who crash lands his plane China after bombing Japan during the Doolittle Raid and his helped to safety by a local widow.
As far as World War II films go, The Chinese Widow has become another of my personal favorites. It's incredibly well-directed, and the two stars are exceptionally well-matched. Along with Lust, Caution, this film has truly sparked my interest in Chinese cinema, which is something I've never been particularly keen on, but I've now realized that I've been missing out.
6. Rocketman (2019)The fourth and final film in this list is not a World War II drama; it's actually a biopic about one the greatest entertainers the world has ever met, Mr. Elton John. The film recounts his life from his early days at the Royal Academy of Music through his partnership with Bernie Taupin and his struggles with substance use, which culminate with a suicide attempt.
Rocketman is a beautiful tribute to Elton John and it is an absolute joy to watch. The musical sequences in particular are a visual spectacle. I also think Taron Egerton was born to play this role, and if he doesn't get an Oscar nomination for it, then the world has really gone to the dogs.
7. «Rocket Man» by Elton JohnAfter watching Rocketman, I listened to Elton John non-stop for about two weeks and «Rocket Man» became a personal favorite of mine. I already knew the song and had listened to it several times before, but it was only after watching the film that I truly appreciated it.
8. «High-Flying Bird» by Elton John
«High-Flying Bird» was one of the many Elton John songs I discovered after watching Rocketman and it became one of my favorites. I still listen to it pretty much everyday.
9. «Queendom» by AURORA