Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Cultural Review of 2009

As in previous years, I present my highly subjective review of the year.

I managed to see all of the films that were nominated for Best Film, Best Actor or Best Actress category at the Oscars, mainly at the beginning of the year. My favourites were Frost/Nixon, Milk and Slumdog Millionaire (although I still think Trainspotting is a way better film). I also loved Moon, which won an award for best British Independent Film (although the OH hated it) and Rudo y Cursi, possibly the best football film ever.

I may have to retire the music category if my apathy towards new music continues. I did get out and see a couple of bands - Maximo Park and the Yeah Yeah Yeahs who were both fantastic and the support band at one of these gigs is my only new discovery of the year, Joe Gideon and the Shark. Rage Against the Machine being the Christmas Number One was probably my musical highlight of the year though.

I achieved my aim of seeing at least one production for each month of the year, although amongst that list were some absolute stinkers. The highlights were seeing Sir Ian McKellan and Patrick Stewart in Waiting for Godot, the one-man show Stefan Golaszewski Plays and the very funny The Priory, but my favourite was Three Days of Rain with the wonderful James McAvoy.

In the post-Wire era, any comments about television shows need to be preceded with the phrase "Its not as good as The Wire, but...". So with that disclaimer in place, I was impressed by In Treatment (although 5 episodes a week was a huge committment), Curb Your Enthusiasm was excellent and The Daily Show continued to inform and entertain. Embarrassingly, I became addicted to Come Dine with Me, but I'm hoping to ween myself off it. On DVD, we rediscovered NYPD Blue, which isn't as good as The Wire, but...

I read over 100 books this year so its a wonder I found time to do anything else. The best were Tropical Fish: Tales of Entebbe by Doreen Baingana, Giraffe by J M Ledgard and The Road by Cormac McCarthy. I also loved The Picture of Contented New Wealth by Tariq Goddard (I'm looking forward to his 5th book in 2010) and Brave New World by Aldous Huxley which left me wondering why it had taken me so long to get around to reading it.


cogidubnus said...

All very highbrow...Theatre and Film just haven't been in it for me at all this year, although I suspect I may've beaten you with the reading this year...

Have a great 2010 sandancer!

Roses said...

Happy New Year lovely.

Hope 2010 is a great one for you and yours.

SandDancer said...

Happy New Year everyone.

Cogi - to be fair, most of my theatre trips were free due to my old work. I'd be interested to hear what your top reads were of the last year.

M said...

I always look forward to reading your cultural 'Year in Review' postings, but then I always feel like an idiot because I realize how much I have not seen or read. Alas, I am culturally challenged and very uncool. Perhaps I should put improvement of all that on my New Year's Resolution list for 2010. Cheers!

Mellifluous Dark said...

I miss reading!!