Media Inventory: What I Watched and Read in 2022

2022: a year

Happy New Year! When I started keeping track of everything I watched (2004), I was a freelance writer whose livelihood largely depended on seeing movies, particularly new stuff in theaters. That continued to describe my situation until November 2019, when I took a full-time regular grown-up job writing content for a large religious organization that pays well and on time (which does not describe most freelance gigs).

Now I continued to see movies, because I love movies — that’s generally why people become film critics, you know — but there were no longer movies that I HAD to see. My viewing habits began to change. Then the pandemic changed everyone’s viewing habits, possibly forever.

So my 2022 list of movies, while the same length as most years — I watched 384 movies — has a very different makeup.

By decade:
1920s – 2
1930s – 15
1940s – 17
1950s – 13
1960s – 5
1970s – 23
1980s – 74 (including 29 horror movies I watched with my friend Brett, our viewing list culled from Shudder’s “In Search of Darkness” documentaries)
1990s – 42
2000s – 32
2010s – 28
2020s – 132 (including 20 films from 2020-2021)

I watched 57 movies from before I was born (1974), and all but five were movies I hadn’t seen before.

Criterion Channel is by far my most-used streaming service. They sometimes have something specific I’m looking for, but more often I watch things that I stumble upon while browsing. It’s the only service I subscribe to whose suggestions I take, the only one that’s really “curating” for me. I watched a number of screwball comedies, film noirs, and obscure ’80s horror this year simply because Criterion featured it.

EVERYTHING I SAW (384, including a few that I saw twice)

Asterisk (*) means I saw the movie in a theater. Movies I saw at the Sundance Film Festival (which was online only), Telluride Film Festival, or Fantastic Fest (both in person) are also noted. (I covered Sundance professionally and attended the other two as a civilian.)

2022 releases (96):

If you would like to see a ranking of these movies, from best to worst, I have a list on Letterboxd. I’ll update it as I continue to catch up with 2022 films, just as I have continued to update the 2021 list.

After Yang (SFF)
Aftersun* (TFF)
Alice (SFF)
Ambulance
Armageddon Time* (TFF)
Athena
The Banshees of Inisherin* (FF)
Barbarian*
Bardo: False Chronicle of a Handful of Truths* (TFF)
The Batman*
The Black Phone*
Blood Relatives
The Bob’s Burgers Movie
Bodies Bodies Bodies*
Bones and All* (TFF)
Breaking (aka 892) (SFF)
Brian and Charles (SFF)
Broker* (TFF)
Bullet Train
Cha Cha Real Smooth (SFF)
Chip ‘n Dale: Rescue Rangers
Choose or Die
Confess, Fletch
Crimes of the Future
Deadstream
Death on the Nile*
Decision to Leave* (FF)
Deep Fear* (FF)
Deep Water
Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness*
Don’t Worry Darling
Dual (SFF)
Elvis
Emergency (SFF)
Emily the Criminal (SFF)
Empire of Light* (TFF)
Everything Everywhere All at Once*
The Fabelmans
Fire Island
Fresh (SFF)
Glass Onion*
Glorious
Good Luck to You, Leo Grande (SFF)
Halloween Ends
Hatching (SFF)
Hellraiser (2022)
Holy Spider* (TFF)
Honk for Jesus. Save Your Soul. (SFF)
Jackass Forever*
Kimi
Lady Chatterley’s Lover* (TFF)
Living (SFF)
Living* (TFF)
A Love Song (SFF)
Mad God
Margaux
Master (SFF)
Matilda: The Musical
Men*
Minions: The Rise of Gru*
Moonfall
No Exit
Nope*
The Northman*
On the Count of Three
Pearl*
Pinocchio (Guillermo del Toro)
Prey
The Princess
Project Wolf Hunting* (FF)
Resurrection (SFF)
RRR*
Scream (aka Scream 5)*
Smile* (FF)
Something in the Dirt (SFF)
Speak No Evil (SFF)
Spirited
Strange World
Tár* (TFF)
Texas Chainsaw Massacre (2022)
Thor: Love and Thunder*
Three Thousand Years of Longing
Top Gun: Maverick*
Triangle of Sadness
Turning Red
V/H/S/99
Vengeance
Watcher
We’re All Going to the World’s Fair
Weird: The Al Yankovic Story
The Woman King
Women Talking* (TFF)
The Wonder* (TFF)
The Worst Person in the World (SFF)
Wounded Fawn* (FF)
X*

Not counting film festivals, I only saw 19 movies in the theater this year (one of them twice). In a typical year when I was a film critic, I’d be in a theater around 150 times. And of those 20 theatrical experiences, all but four of them were with friends or family. I rarely go to the movies alone anymore, something I used to do all the time, simply because it’s usually no problem to wait 45 days (or less!) and see the movie streaming somewhere.

2023 releases (Sundance, Telluride, or Fantastic Fest movies that haven’t opened yet) (12):

Huesera* (FF)
Kids vs. Aliens* (FF)
King on Screen* (FF)
Medusa Deluxe* (FF)
The Mission (SFF)
Nightmare* (FF)
Satanic Hispanics* (FF)
Shin Ultraman* (FF)
Swallowed* (FF)
Smoking Causes Coughing* (FF)
When You Finish Saving the World (SFF)
The Year of the Shark* (FF)

New to me (175):

Accused of Murder (1956)
All Dogs Go to Heaven (1989)
All the Right Moves (1983)
All-Star Superman (2011)
Alligator (1980)
Androcles and the Lion (1953)
Angst (aka Fear) (1983)
The Appointment (1982)
The Babe (1992)
Baby’s Day Out (1994)
The Bachelor and the Bobby-Soxer (1947)
Bad Luck Banging or Loony Porn (2021)
The Band Wagon, The (1953)
Beat Girl (aka Wild for Kicks) (1960)
Being the Ricardos (2021)
Benedetta (2021)
Beyond Atlantis (MST3K) (1973)
The Black Cat (1981)
Black Widow (1954)
The Blob (1988)
Bluebeard’s Eighth Wife (1938)
Boomerang! (1947)
Brain Damage (1988)
Brigadoon (1954)
Broadcast News (1987)
Buffalo Bill and the Indians; Or, Sitting Bull’s History Lesson (1976)
Bull Durham (1988)
Burning, The (1981)
Car Wash (1976)
Cat’s Eye (1985)
The Cheat (1931)
Children of the Corn III: Urban Harvest (1995)
Children of the Corn IV: The Gathering (1996)
Children of the Corn V: Fields of Terror (1998)
Chopping Mall (1986)
Citizen Ruth (1996)
The Cocoanuts (1929)
Come Back to the 5 & Dime Jimmy Dean, Jimmy Dean (1982)
Coonskin (1974)
Crash (1996)
Crime Wave (1953)
Critters (1986)
Critters 2 (1988)
Critters 3 (1991)
Critters 4 (1992)
Critters Attack! (2019)
Cube 2: Hypercube (2002)
Cube Zero (2005)
Damien: Omen II (1978)
The Dead (1987)
Death on the Nile (1978)
Deep Cover (1992)
The Devil Is Driving (1932)
Devil Times Five (aka Peoplegames; aka The Horrible House on the Hill) (1974)
Doctor X (1932)
Don’t Breathe 2 (2021)
Drive My Car (2021)
Encanto (2021)
Eternals (2021)
Evilspeak (1982)
eXistenZ (1999)
Extraordinary Tales (2015)
The Fan (1981)
Flower Drum Song (1961)
Friday Foster (1975)
Frontier(s) (2008)
Fun and Fancy Free (1947)
The Funhouse (1981)
Ghostwatch (1992)
Ginger Snaps (2000)
The Glass Key (1942)
A Goofy Movie (1995)
Greaser’s Palace (1972)
The Great Ziegfeld (1936)
Hell Night (1981)
Hello Mary Lou: Prom Night II (1987)
Hellzapoppin’ (1941)
The House by the Cemetery (1981)
House of Frankenstein (1944)
House of Gucci (2021)
The House on Sorority Row (1982)
How Green Was My Valley (1941)
Humanoids from the Deep (aka Monster) (1980)
In Search of Darkness (2019)
Inferno (1953)
Intruder (1989)
Jeanne Dielman, 23 quai du Commerce, 1080 Bruxelles (1975)
Just Before Dawn (1981)
The Keep (1983)
Killer’s Kiss (1955)
King Kong (1976)
The King’s Man (2021)
Kiss of Death (1947)
The Lair of the White Worm (1988)
The Last Detail (1973)
The Last Tycoon (1976)
The Last Waltz (1978)
Leatherface (2017)
Leatherface: The Texas Chainsaw Massacre III (1990)
Livid (2011)
Lonesome Dove (TV) (1989)
The Lost Daughter (2021)
Lost Highway (1997)
Love Is News (1937)
M. Butterfly (1993)
Mad Max 2: The Road Warrior (1982)
Maniac (1980)
Maniac Cop (1988)
Maniac Cop 2 (1990)
Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein (1994)
Maximum Overdrive (1986)
Me and My Gal (1932)
Messiah of Evil (1973)
Million Dollar Legs (1932)
Mother’s Day (1980)
Murder at the Vanities (1934)
Murder, He Says (1945)
Murders in the Zoo (1933)
My Bloody Valentine (1981)
Next of Kin (1982)
Night of the Comet (1984)
Nightmare Alley (2021)
Nineteen Eighty-Four (1984)
The Old Man and the Sea (1958)
Omen III: The Final Conflict (1981)
The Palm Beach Story (1942)
Pennies from Heaven (1981)
Police Story (1985)
Poltergeist III (1988)
Postcards from the Edge (1990)
Predator 2 (1990)
Prince of Darkness (1987)
Prom Night (1980)
Prophecy (1979)
The Quick and the Dead (1995)
Reno 911! The Hunt for QAnon (2021)
Ride the High Country (1962)
The Ring (1927)
Roadgames (1981)
The Robe (1953)
Robot Wars (MST3K) (1993)
A Room with a View (1985)
Sabotage (1936)
Santo in the Treasure of Dracula (MST3K) (1968)
Secret Honor (1984)
Sense and Sensibility (1995)
The Seventh Curse (1986)
Silent Night, Deadly Night Part 2 (1987)
The Slumber Party Massacre (1982)
Slumber Party Massacre II (1987)
Slumber Party Massacre (2021)
The Snake Girl and the Silver-Haired Witch (1968)
Society (1989)
Solaris (1972)
Solomon King* (1974) (FF)
Something Wild (1986)
Son of Frankenstein (1939)
Stormy Weather (1943)
The Stuff (1985)
Swamp Water (1941)
Terror in a Texas Town (1958)
Tetsuo: The Iron Man (1989)
The Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2 (1986)
Thinner (1996)
This Gun for Hire (1942)
To Have and Have Not (1944)
The Tragedy of Macbeth (2021)
Transylvania 6-5000 (1985)
Trapped (1949)
Vampire’s Kiss (1989)
You Never Can Tell (1951)
Young and Innocent (aka The Girl Was Young) (1937)

Rewatches (98):

The Amazing Spider-Man (2012)
Anchorman (theatrical cut) (2004)
Annihilation (2018)
Argo (2012)
Avatar (2009)
Barton Fink (1991)
Batman (1989)
Batman Returns (1992)
Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure (1989)
Birth (2004)
Blade Runner (1982)
Casablanca (1942)
Cheap Thrills (2014)
Chicken Little (2005)
Cube (1997)
The Darjeeling Limited (2007)
The Dead Zone (1983)
Death Becomes Her (1992)
Drive (2011)
Dune (2021)
Dunkirk (2017)
Easy A (2010)
Elf (2003)
Fantastic Mr. Fox (2009)
Final Destination (2000)
Final Destination 2 (2003)
Final Destination 3 (2006)
The Final Destination (2009)
Final Destination 5 (2011)
Full Metal Jacket (1987)
Galaxy Quest (1999)
Game Night (2018)
Gone with the Wind (1939)
Highlander (1986)
Highlander II: The Quickening (Renegade Version) (1991)
Honeymoon in Vegas (1992)
Inception (2010)
Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom (1984)
Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade (1989)
Jurassic Park III (2001)
L.A. Confidential (1997)
Land of the Lost (2009)
Legally Blonde (2001)
The Lost World: Jurassic Park (1997)
The Loved Ones (2012)
MacGruber (unrated) (2010)
Mad Max: Fury Road (2015)
Malignant (2021)
Miami Vice (2006)
Moana (2016)
Moon (2009)
The Mummy (1999)
Munchie (MST3K) (1992)
My Man Godfrey (1936)
Network (1976)
Nobody (2021)
The Omen (1976)
Once Upon a Time in Hollywood (2019)
Pee-wee’s Big Adventure (1985)
Pinocchio (1940)
Pontypool (2009)
Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping (2016)
The Predator (2018)
Ravenous (1999)
Risky Business (1983)
Robin Hood: Men in Tights (1993)
Run Lola Run (1999)
Seven Psychopaths (2012)
Shaun of the Dead (2004)
Silent Night, Deadly Night (1984)
Sleeping Beauty (1959)
Slow West (2015)
Snake Eyes (1998)
Source Code (2011)
Spider-Man 2 (2004)
Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse (2018)
Spontaneous (2020)
Star Wars: Episode II — Attack of the Clones (2002)
Star Wars: Episode III — Revenge of the Sith (2005)
Strange Days (1995)
Superman II (1981)
Superman II (Donner Cut) (1981)
Texas Chainsaw 3D (2013)
The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (2003)
The Texas Chainsaw Massacre: The Beginning (2006)
Texas Chainsaw Massacre: The Next Generation (1995)
Time After Time (1979)
Titanic (1997)
Treasure Planet (2002)
War of the Worlds (2005)
West Side Story (2021)
Where the Wild Things Are (2009)
Who Framed Roger Rabbit (1988)
Willow (1988)
Wristcutters: A Love Story (2006)
Wrong Turn (2003)
Young Frankenstein (1974)
Zola (2021)

BOOKS

FICTION

I’m plugging away at my goal of reading every novel that has won the Pulitzer Prize. Of the 94 winners (so far), I’ve read 68, including 25 this year. I’m very proud of that, especially considering I tackled some of the longest books on the list in 2022, including Lonesome Dove, Gone with the Wind, Andersonville, and The Travels of Jaimie McPheeters (loved ’em all, even GWTW, which is hella racist but a real page-turner).

Asterisks (*) indicate a book I particularly enjoyed.

*Gilead – Marilynne Robinson
The Good Earth – Pearl S. Buck
Alice Adams – Booth Tarkington
The Collected Stories of Jean Stafford
The Stories of John Cheever
The Collected Stories of Katherine Anne Porter
One of Ours – Willa Cather
Now in November – Josephine Johnson
*Lonesome Dove – Larry McMurtry
Years of Grace – Margaret Ayer Barnes
The Able McLaughlins – Margaret Wilson
*Gone with the Wind – Margaret Mitchell
*Andersonville – MacKinley Kantor
The Keepers of the House – Shirley Ann Grau
*The Travels of Jaimie McPheeters – Robert Lewis Taylor
A Thousand Acres – Jane Smiley
Early Autumn – Louis Bromfield
Arrowsmith – Sinclair Lewis
Scarlet Sister Mary – Julia Peterkin
Elbow Room – James Alan McPherson
*The Sympathizer – Viet Thanh Nguyen
Journey in the Dark – Martin Flavin
The Goldfinch – Donna Tartt
The Night Watchman – Louise Erdrich
*The Edge of Sadness – Edwin O’Connor

NON-FICTION/MEMOIRS

So, Anyway… – John Cleese
I Must Say – Martin Short
Comedy, Comedy, Comedy, Drama – Bob Odenkirk
The Kid Stays in the Picture – Robert Evans
In on the Joke – Shawn Levy
Always Look on the Bright Side of Life – Eric Idle
My Anecdotal Life: A Memoir – Carl Reiner