Welcome to the Wednesday edition of Internet Insider, where we tell you what you should be watching this week.
- The best movies and TV shows of 2021
- Drop your Letterboxd
- Being the Ricardos does too much
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YEAR IN REVIEW
Trying to remember the movies and shows of 2021
During a holiday gathering, I was asked an innocent question by a loved one: What was your favorite movie this year? I smiled and tried to look thoughtful, but panicked when I kept coming back to the same question: Was that this year?
The internet culture staff watched a lot of content this year, and came up with lists of our favorites, from the buzzy Showtime drama Yellowjackets, to Jane Campion’s acclaimed The Power of the Dog, to season 2 of the memeable I Think You Should Leave.
As for my favorite movie, Titane was certainly the most memorable theater-going experience, and it’s the answer I eventually arrived at, but how does one describe that film to their mother?
Read our full year-end lists here.
—Audra Schroeder, senior writer
Cut your grocery shopping bill in half
Do you ever get to the grocery store checkout and nearly faint at the crazy amount you owe? It’s no secret, groceries are getting more expensive, but it’s still a surprise every time.
Buying in bulk is great for saving some $$, but that’s a beginner hack. It’s time to level up with some intermediate-level grocery shopping tips. Here are some lesser-known ways to save money next time you shop.
Letterboxd was the only good social network in 2021
A few weeks ago, Jeff Goldblum was subjected to a series of questions by Stephen Colbert during his appearance on The Late Show. Released as two separate videos on YouTube, the questionnaire consisted of 15 fairly softball and low-stakes questions that let Goldblum play up his eccentric charm.
To kick off the second video, Colbert asked Goldblum what his favorite action movie was. Instead of listing just one movie, Goldblum took out a small black notebook from his jacket pocket in clear anticipation of the question at hand.
“Now, this is a work in progress,” he told Colbert, getting excited enough that he struggled to get the words out. “I’m going to- I can’t- I would be- I can’t say one, but here are a bunch of movies, very quickly.” By Colbert’s count, Goldblum listed 25 movies, which encompassed a blend of classics, modern movies, and even one of his own movies: Jurassic Park.
It didn’t take long for Letterboxd, a social media site that allows users to log, review, and list all of the movies they’re watching or want to watch, to urge Goldblum to “drop your Letterboxd” so that we could see what else Goldblum was watching. Shortly after, someone made a Letterboxd list of Goldblum’s favorite action movies, which features a bar that allows users to see what percentage of the movies they’ve watched for themselves or to plan a new watch. (I’ve seen 11 of the 25.)
Letterboxd, the New Zealand-based site that was founded in 2011 by Matt Buchanan and Karl von Randow, was geared toward cinephiles. In 2021, it’s a site I frequented more and more not just because I logged movies, but it gave me more of a window and a curative experience that made the year suck just a little less.
Many of Letterboxd’s early users are the kind of people, according to a 2020 Ringer profile on the site, who were already obsessively logging what movies they watched on paper or spreadsheets; the site notes that it’s been described as “Goodreads for movies.”
The site is active on Twitter as it celebrates movie anniversaries and film awards or showers affection for filmmakers. More people started frequenting the site more during the pandemic; Letterboxd said in January 2021 that the number of accounts on the site nearly doubled in a year.
Read more here.
—Michelle Jaworski, staff writer
DAILY DOT PICKS
- QAnon, Epstein’s old island, and the Reno Sheriff’s Department? Seriously, what can go right? Find out and watch RENO 911! The Hunt for QAnon – now available exclusively on Paramount+. Sign up today and get a 30-day free trial!*
- The top 12 celebrity cancellations of 2021.
- Streaming low-res video is the ultimate live stream fail. These HD cams for live streaming will keep you from ending up on r/livestreamfails for the wrong reasons.*
- Andrew Garfield is getting a resurgence online after No Way Home.
*The Daily Dot may receive a commission in connection with purchases of products or services featured here.
Being the Ricardos is an overstuffed and unfocused look at Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz
Being the Ricardos wants to be a lot of things. The newest film from writer-director Aaron Sorkin (The Trial of the Chicago 7) plays out over a highly eventful week during the production of I Love Lucy in 1953, the events of which would need far more than a single episode to convey.
It tries to encompass elements of a more traditional biopic as Lucille Ball (Nicole Kidman) weathers two scandals—one that could tank her career, the other her marriage—as well as another development that’ll throw a major wrench into the show.
It wants to recreate certain scenes from I Love Lucy shot-for-shot, and for some reason, the film is framed with a fake documentary in which several key players during this week are interviewed by an unknown person behind the camera.
Some of those devices are far more successful than others.
Read the full review here.
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