Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Bees, Ducks, and Other (Cinematic) Delights

I realize it makes me the world's biggest geek, but I write down every film I see. And I've been doing so for years. Otherwise, I won't remember, and I need all the help I can get as I participate in an annual countdown. I also compile a personal top 30--the Axman's party only requires 10 titles--so it helps to have a master list from which to work.

This weekend, I hit the big 250, so it seems like a good time to bring my favorites to light. I've arranged them in chronological order, since I won't be doing any actual organizing until late-December/early-January. Also, I still haven't seen some of the year's most critically acclaimed movies, like Babel and Inland Empire. Nonetheless, I've used bold to indicate the 20 entries, including re-releases, most likely to make it onto my top 30.

To save space, I present the following with only the occasional editorial comment, although I've provided links when available.


A Good Woman, The Three Burials of Melquiades Estrada, The Intruder, Sophie Scholl : The Final Days (should've won the Oscar for best foreign film over Tsotsi), Dave Chappelle's Block Party (y'all slept on this one--for shame!), Thank You for Smoking, Duck Season (see Dave Chapelle comment), Inside Man (Spike's biggest box office opening ever!), The Devil and Daniel Johnston, Friends With Money (I preferred it to Lovely and Amazing...guess I'm in the minority), Spirit of the Beehive, Mouchette, Innocence (for the final sequence alone), Classes Tous Risques, Sketches of Frank Gehry (some dismissed this as a puff piece; they might want to take another look), Pusher II: With Blood on My Hands (for Mads Mikkelson alone), I:I, C.R.A.Z.Y., Art School Confidential (see Dave Chappelle comment), QuinceaƱera, The House of Sand (watched it twice; it holds up), Who Killed the Electric Car? (see previous comment), The Proposition (yes!!!), The Death of Mr. Lazarescu, Old Joy, We Go Way Back, Sa-Kwa (for Moon So-ri alone), Lunacy, Wristcutters - A Love Story (please ignore the crappy title), 13/Tzameti, Brothers of the Head, Starfish Hotel, 49 Up, Linda Linda Linda (yes yes yes), Heading South, Who Is Harry Nilsson (and Why Is Everybody Talkin' About Him)?, Backstage, The Science of Sleep, Gravehopping, Time to Leave, Jonestown: The Life and Death of People's Temple, Russian Dolls, The Devil Wears Prada (because I'm nuts!), Superman Returns (see previous comment), A Scanner Darkly, Lemming, Army of Shadows, Leonard Cohen: I'm Your Man (for Cohen, natch), Half Nelson, Idlewild (see Dave Chappelle comment), Burn to Shine: Portland, The Queen, and last but far from least, The Departed (Scorsese's back--as with Spike, his best opening ever).

Endnote: And there you have it. Note that Michael Mann and Clint Eastwood didn't make the cut. Miami Vice and Flags of Our Fathers have their charms, but failed to move me as much as Collateral or Million Dollar Baby. Then again, I'm still tossing Flags around in my mind; it may well be a grower. Images from my photo gallery: Spirit of the Beehive, Romain Duris (Russian Dolls), Dave Chappelle's Block Party, and Half Nelson.

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