Tuesday, May 14, 2019

Top ten Keanu Reeves films

1. Point Break (Bigelow, 1991)
2. My Own Private Idaho (Van Sant, 1991)
3. The Matrix (The Wachowskis, 1999)
4. Speed (de Bont, 1994)
5. Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure (Herek, 1989)
6. A Scanner Darkly (Linklater, 2006)
7. River's Edge (Hunter, 1986)
8. Thumbsucker (Mills, 2005)
9. Dangerous Liasons (Frears, 1988)
10. Parenthood (Howard, 1989)

We recently had trouble watching the whole of Siberia, a 2018 Netflix film starring a wooden Reeves as a dodgy diamond trader ("Fatally, the script requires Reeves to do some serious acting", quipped the Guardian). You'd think after thirty years of doing the same job, he'd get the hang of it by now.

On paper, Reeves seems more interesting than he is on screen: born in Beirut with a mother from Essex and a Hawaiian father, Reeves is actually Canadian. I read once he didn't own anything and lived out of hotels. His wife gave birth to a stillborn baby in 1999 then died just over a year later in a car accident. It's thought he's Buddhist (though he's not). Then there was that sad meme which went viral a few years ago. No one's entirely sure if he's deep or dumb or both, but everyone likes him. Adam Driver looks like a long lost cousin of Keanu's – but at least he can act.

I’m torn about writing top tens for actors – do you rate the film or the performance or a combination of both? I'm going for both. Hence I'm leaving out the "critical approved" John Wick films, The Devil's Advocate, Constantine and the two other Matrix films – all of which are terrible. Recently he seems to be doing a Liam Neeson and typecasting himself as an action hero in his later years (Neeson was 56 when he did the first Taken movie; Reeves is in his mid-50s now.)

To misquote a line about Orson Welles and Citizen Kane: Point Break is the best action film ever, and it's not even Bigelow's best (that would be Near Dark, surely?).

Top ten Canadian musicians

1. Leonard Cohen
2. Glenn Gould
3. Joni Mitchell
4. Neil Young
5. The Band
6. Godspeed You! Black Emperor
7. Jane Silberry
8. Arcade Fire 
9. Peaches
10. k.d. lang

Do say: Where's The Weeknd, Feist, Owen Pallett, Daniel Lanois, Ron Sexsmith and Barenaked Ladies?
Don't say: Where's Rush, Justin Bieber, Bryan Adams, Celine Dion, Avril Lavigne, Drake, Michael Buble and Alanis Morissette?

Previously on Barnflakes:
Top 10 Australian bands

Wednesday, May 08, 2019

Pencil patterns

Soon to be... enamel pin badges!