M2M: June Film Challenge List

I posted about my Goals for 2017 last month and I thought I would outline a more simpler post per month.

I’m calling it the Month to Month post. Here, I will outline what I am doing for each month as a goal.

June’s goal is watching a movie a day for the next 30 days.

The following one line reviews will be as spoiler free as possible. I can’t say for certainty that they will be 100% spoiler free and I will not take responsibility for it.


  • 50/50 Comedies and Dramas, no documentaries, no shorts. Animated is fine.
  • At least 5 foreign language films.
  • Minimum of 3 should be watched in theatres.
  • At least 5 films made by Canadian production companies/creators.
  • At least 5 films by a female director.
  • No rewatching movies that you’ve already seen.

Ho boy…

1. The Way, Way Back (2013) – Directed by Nat Faxon, Jim Rash – Starring Liam James, Toni Collette, Steve Carrell, Sam Rockwell, Alison Janney

Check List: Comedy, Family Drama, American

Moon Rating: A good movie about adults being assholes to teens and also teens trying to figure it out and ALSO SAM ROCKWELL!

2. Wonder Woman (2017) – Directed by Patty Jenkins – Starring Gal Gadot, Chris Pine, Connie Nielsen, Robin Wright, and Danny Huston

Check List: Directed by a Woman, Drama, In Theatre, DCEU, American

Moon Rating: Laugh and cry and feel energized by seeing Wonder Woman take names and kick ass.

3. Kubo and the Two Strings (2016) – Directed by Travis Knight – Starring Art Parkinson, Charlize Theron, and Matthew McConaughey

Check List: Drama, Stop Motion, Animated, Family Drama, Asian Inspired, American

Moon Rating: I’m sure others might find this movie very hype and inspirational but I thought it was a bit drawn out and dull.

4. Whiskey Tango Foxtrot (2016) – Directed by Glenn Ficarra,  John Requa – Starring Tina Fey, Margot Robbie, Martin Freeman, and Christopher Abbott

Check List: Dark Comedy, Journalism Movie, War Correspondent, Based on a Book, American

Moon Rating: Could have been edgier but still a fun watch. IRISH WATSON! Hey-o.

5. Spotlight (2015) – Directed by Tom McCarthy – Starring Michael Keaton, Mark Ruffalo, Rachel McAdams, and Liev Schreiber

Check List: Drama, Journalism Movie, Based on True Events, American

Moon Rating: Entirely engrossing, completely devastating, a must watch. Get ready to feel every feel.

6. Zoom (2015) – Directed by Peter Morelli – Starring Allison Pill, Tyler Labine, Michael Eklund, Gael Garcia Bernal, Jennifer Irwin, and Don McKeller

Check List: Dark Comedy, Meta Movie, Canadian Movie

Moon Rating: A strange flick that churns the idea of connectivity between subplots and side characters. Also, literal comic book scenes.

7. I Don’t Feel at Home in this World Anymore (2017) – Directed by Macon Blair – Starring Melanie Lynsey, Elijah Wood, and Devon Graye

Check List: Drama, Home Invasion, Revenge Movie

Moon Rating: A must if you love strange coincidences and Elijah Wood acting a fool.

8. Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping (2016) – Directed by Akiva SchafferJorma Taccone – Starring Andy Samberg, Akiva SchafferJorma Taccone, Sarah Silverman, and Tim Meadows

Check List: Comedy, American, Music Parody

Moon Rating: If you know a lot of music trivia and can spot a parody in seconds, a good watch. Otherwise, not the best from the SNL movie collection.

9. Any Given Sunday (1999) – Directed by Oliver Stone – Starring Al Pacino, Jamie Foxx, Dennis Quaid, Cameron Diaz, and LL Cool J

Check List: Drama, Sports, Football Movie, American

Moon Rating: Watch it for the dialogue. Stay for the Inches speech. Best sports speech of all time.

10. The Diary of a Teenage Girl (2015) – Directed by Marielle Heller – Starring Bel Powley, Kristen Wiig, and Alexander Skarsgard

Check List: Drama, American, Coming of Age Story, Directed by a Woman

Moon Rating: Incredibly touching if you’ve ever been a little lost finding your sexuality as a teenager.

11. The Last King (2016) – Directed by Nils Gaup – Starring Jakob Oftebro, Kristofer Hijvu, Ane Ulimoen Øverli, and Pål Sverre Hagen

Check List: Period Drama, Historical, Norwegian

Moon Rating: Skiing Viking men save a King Baby. What else do you need?

12. Queen of Katwe (2016) – Directed by Mira Nair – Starring Nadina Malwanga, Lupita Wyong’o, David Oyelowo, and Martin Kabanza

Check List: Drama, Directed by a Female, Biopic, Sports Movie

Moon Rating: A wonderful timeline of how tough life’s goals can be when you are pursuing a passion many can’t fathom. Amazing visuals, GREAT MUSIC. #1 Spice!

13. Dear Zindagi (2016) – Directed by Gauri Shinde – Starring Alia Bhatt, Shah Ruhk Khan, and Yashaswini Dayama

Check List: Bollywood Movie, Foreign Language, Drama, Coming of Age, Directed by a Woman

Moon Rating: A movie that shows mental and emotional healing takes time.

14. The Secret Lives of Pets (2016) – Directed by Chris Renaud,  Yarrow Cheney – Starring Louis CK, Eric Stonestreet, Kevin Hart, Jenny Slate, Lake Bell, and Albert Brooks

Check List: Animated, Comedy, For Pet Lovers

Moon Rating: Cute, childish, good for background noises. This one is for pet owners for damn sure.

15. Everybody Wants Some!! (2016) – Directed by Richard Linklater – Starring Blake Jenner, Glen Powell, Quentin Johnson, and Zoey Deutch

Check List: Comedy, College Movie, American

Moon Rating: A fun romp into young adulthood, high residuals of Linklater’s Dazed. So many bro moments.

16. The Art of the Steal (2013) – Directed by Jonathan Sobol – Starring Kurt Russell, Matt Dillion, Jay Baruchel, Kenneth Welsh, Chris Diamantopoulos, and Katheryn Winnick

Check List: Canadian Movie, Heist, Dark Comedy

Moon Rating: A fun heist flick, some great character work.

17. My Beloved Bodyguard (2016) – Directed by Sammo Hung – Starring Sammo Hung, Jacqueline Chan, Qinqin Li, and Andy Lau

Check List: Foreign Language, Drama, Kung-fu Action

Moon Rating: Get ready for sadness and kung fu.

18. Sicario (2015) – Directed by Denis Villenueve – Starring Emily Blunt, Benicio Del Toro, Daniel Kaluuya, and Josh Brolin

Check List: American, Drama, Drug Cartels, Revenge

Moon Rating: Intense, a reminder that we will never be fully prepared for the cartel experience which also includes the characters in the movie.

19. My Life Without Me (2003) – Directed by Isabel Coixet – Starring Sarah Polley, Mark Ruffalo, Scott Speedman, Debbie Harry, and Amanda Plummer

Check List: Drama, Bucket List Movie, Directed by a Female, Canadian Film

Moon Rating: Everyone is very young and smol in this movie. Dreamy melancholy movie about preparing for the end.

20. The Phantom of the Paradise (1974) – Directed by Brian De Palma – Starring William Finley, Paul Williams, Jessica Harper, Gerrit Graham, and George Memmoli

Check List: Musical, Psychedelic, Monster(ish) Movie, Cult Classic


21. The Voices (2014) – Directed by Marjane Satrapi – Starring Ryan Reynolds, Gemma Arterton, Anna Kendrick, and Jacki Weaver

Check List: Directed by a Woman, Low-Key Horror, Norman Batesy, Dark Comedy

Moon Rating: Creepy Ryan Reynolds doing his least comedic role. Certainly worth it for the talking animals.

22. Maudie (2016) – Directed by Aisling Walsh – Starring Sally Hawkins, Ethan Hawke, Keri Marchett, and Gabrielle Rose

Check List: Directed by a Woman, Canadian Film, Drama, Biopic, Watched in a Theatre, Artist Movies

Moon Rating: A gorgeous setting, high Canadiana nostalgia, hard line artist biopic themes.

23. Burn After Reading (2008) – Directed by Coen Brothers – Starring George Clooney, Frances McDormand, Tilda Swinton, John Malkovich, Brad Pitt, and Richard Jenkins

Check List: Dark Comedy, Comedy of Errs, Blackmail, Intelligence Game, American

Moon Rating: Sure, that was a movie. I didn’t enjoy it much, maybe its your thing but it wasn’t for me.


Well, I did okay. I missed 7 movies by the end but I did hit one goal.

By a Woman: IIIII II
Foreign Language: III
Canadian: IIII
In Theater: II

I wished I hit that Canadian film goal but that’s fine. This is pretty good for picking a very busy Summer month to try and fit 30 movies in.

Of the 23 movies I watched…

  • Two were made before the 2000s and 12 of them were released between 2016-2017.
  • Both of the movies I saw in theatres were directed by women; Wonder Woman and Maudie.
  • The only Bollywood entry was also directed by a woman, Dear Zindagi.
  • The movies directed by women were Wonder Woman, Diary of a Teenage Girl, Queen of Katwe, Dear Zindagi, My Life Without Me, The Voices, and Maudie.
  • Of the 3 foreign language films they were in Norwegian (The Last King), Cantonese (My Beloved Bodyguard), and Hindi with English (Dear Zindagi).
  • I only watched one musical; The Phantom of the Paradise.
  • Five films required more than one director; The Way Way Back, Kubo and the Two Strings, PopStar: Never Stop Never Stopping, Secret Lives of Pets, and Burn After Reading.
  • Two films had the director also star in the feature; Sammo Hung in My Beloved Bodyguard, Akiva Schaffer and Jorma Taccone in PopStar: Never Stop Never Stopping.
  • I saw 2 animated movies; Kubo and the Two Strings and The Secret Lives of Pets.
  • The Canadian films were Zoom, My Life Without Me, The Art of the Steal, and Maudie.
  • Three movies were biopics or based on a real life; Whiskey Tango Foxtrot, Queen of Katwe, and Maudie.
  • Only one movie was based on news events; Spotlight.
  • Mark Ruffalo is in two of the 23 movies; Spotlight and My Life Without Me.
  • Three movies have SNL alumni; Kristen Wiig, The Lonely Island, and Tina Fey.
  • One movie is a Netflix “original” was I Don’t Feel at Home in This World Anymore.
  • My top five were Phantom of the Paradise, Queen of Katwe, Zoom, Spotlight, and Any Given Sunday. I’d say a runners up would be Diary of a Teenage Girl and The Way Way Back.
  • One movie had Sam Rockwell and I needed more Rockwell in my life I made bad decisions why didn’t I watch more Rockwell flicks…
  • One lonely borrowed DVD remains unwatched on my coffee table, it is Spring Breakers.

Sorry Spring Breakers…


As it turns out, trying to fit a movie in is a lot tougher than fitting a TV pilot in your day. Well, at least it was for me. I like being totally engaged with what I am watching so trying to fit a movie in and not do other things was kind of tough. It helped if I watched movies with people or planned a movie night around new movies. I especially don’t like pausing movies, I want to watch them in a single sitting.

I wished I had at least watched the minimum of movies in theatres. I really did try. Its a bit tough on the wallet and particularly with so much happening in the Summer, it was always gonna be tough.

If I were to change up the challenge, I’d say use a time marker as in if you want to watch older movies, just have all the movies be released between a year and a year.

All in all, a pretty good go of it. I should really do this challenge during a winter month.