I just had a weird epiphany. Spike Jonze may be my favorite director working today. I mean, we all know that Xavier Dolan is my favorite filmmaker...but I've made it clear that Dolan's auteur ascendance is a combination of brilliant ideas finding their voice in a very unique landscape that doesn't always mesh completely (his highs are higher than anyone else's, but he has some lows). Spike Jonze has only made four feature films since delivering his debut back in 1999 (like, what?) and all four of them are, in one way or another, perfect. While Dolan is probably my most rewarded modern filmmaker (because of having hands all over his films, from writing to directing to editing to costuming, he's wracked up 9 Fisti nominations and 6 wins, ATM), Jonze holds a pretty big Fisti record.
All four of his films are BP noms.
Yes, all four of his films are deemed, by me, to be Top Five in their given years, and two of them actually win BP (he shares that with Dolan).
I guess I really love this guy, and it's funny because I didn't really know that until earlier today. Like, I knew that I liked him and I obviously knew that I really liked his films (one in particular is one of my all time favorite films), but when I think of modern filmmakers that really excite me, my mind goes (after Dolan) to names like Fincher and Coppola and Wright...but...Jonze may actually be a favorite I didn't know I had.
I feel a list coming on.
Anyways, in thinking of his perfect filmography, I thought to myself...it's time for another batch of Visual Reviews!!! It's been too long. For those of you unfamiliar, this is when I take a director's entire resume and I review their work using stills from their films.
Let's do this!
Being John Malkovich (1999) *****/*****
|A deeply intimate look into one's self...|
|Unexpected moments of grace make this surprisingly personal...|
|It goes there...|
|Two sides of the same coin...|
|Completely original despite it's 'adaptation'...|
|Glimmers of beauty abound...|
|Like the warm hug of nostalgia...|
|It stirs in the soul the triumphant spirit of childhood...|
|Intimately personal and shockingly comforting...|
|It's all about the journey...|
|...and the fact that you can always come home!|
|Loneliness, set free...|
|Beautifully comfortable in it's expression of themes...|
|That carefree plunge into love sets my heart a spinnin'|