454 - The Bourne Supremacy - 4 stars
Paul Greengrass took over the franchise and delivered an even leaner, meaner sequel that quickly dropped the romance subplot (quite literally by *spoilers* shooting it in the back of the head), and Bourne is back being tracked by a bunch of suits looking at computer monitors who are terrified because they are now the target of Bourne's anger.
This was the moment that Damon turned into a A-List megastar, carrying a film with a magnetic ans physical screen presence yet not saying much at all. After all, actions speak louder than words, and they certainly do when you are kicking somebody's ass with a rolled up copy of Heat magazine!
The film, in my humble opinion, was responsible for the new direction and success of the James Bond reboot. Gone were the gadgets, romancing and witty quips and replaced with a grittier, more realistic feel in keeping with the Bourne films. Even the ending of Quantum of Solace is a rip-off of the ending of Bourne Supremacy with a confrontation/confession in a snowy apartment block.
The other major influence on filmmaking in the last few years, arguably for better or worse, is the super fast, even dizzying, editing style that is used during the movie-defining car chase. In this MTV generation, a lot of young filmmakers think that by editing a sequence so that you squeeze in 100 shots within 30 seconds means that you can place emphasis on style over substance. This isn't a criticism of this film but on the copycats that followed.
389 - Election - 3 stars
A witty social and political satire about a teacher who rigs a student council election due to a vendetta with a pupil.
I know I'm not alone in finding Reese Witherspoon intensely irritating but I guess that works very well for this film when she is supposed to be annoying.
Matthew Broderick was very good as the teacher whose simple life spirals out of control, all due to complications in what should have been a simple election. Often forget that Broderick can be a good actor and not just Ferris Bueller.
Just wondering if Jim McAllister was working in Florida in 2000 during the Bush/Gore election?
Days remaining - 226 Films remaining - 295