Post #400: Musings & Problems / What’s Next / Capsules / Endings List / Index
MUSINGS & PROBLEMS (SKIPPABLE)
Some changes are afoot during the rest of 2014 at this blog. The prospective visitor right now, assuming he or she skips this indulgent little catalog of nitpicks and stresses, is seeing on the front page three reviews posted in the last week with which I am about as happy as I’ve been with anything of any kind that I’ve ever posted. They’re all wordy and overstuffed and frantic with ideas and opinions, but they are well-informed, robust and hopefully engaging. Short of finding a professional editor and getting paid to do this stuff (and continuing to age, naturally), there’s not much chance I can do a lot better than I’m currently doing. Nevertheless, there’s obviously room for improvement. There’s always room for improvement. And as proud as I am of the recent pieces posted here, I’m also feeling… exhausted. Can you forgive a tangent? Oh, thank goodness.
Something else that happened this week: Owen Gleiberman, chief film critic at Entertainment Weekly, was fired after 24 years at a magazine he’s been part of since it was founded. A year after the death of Roger Ebert, this has renewed a long-running conversation about the continued viability of professional film criticism, especially in print. EW has begun commissioning bloggers to generate content for its webpage for free — less than you’d make on Mechanical Turk for writing about the spiritual advantages of owning a beanbag chair, remember — and implying that the weight of “prestige” one receives for a byline on their website is worth foregoing, y’know, a livelihood.
Now, admittedly I have provided free content for a publication’s blog before — but it was a publication that was simultaneously paying me (very well, if sporadically) to write articles for their print edition. And I only contributed to the blog when I felt like it or when I was extremely determined to get something in their orbit that there wouldn’t be room for otherwise. And admittedly I have now written untold hundreds of thousands of words of music and movie reviews online for no compensation, some of it not so good, some of it okay, but all of it driven by love and interest in doing so. Am I participating in a devaluation of criticism and writing? I’d hate to think that. Luckily, this stuff is up here because I enjoy doing it. I’m going to say something — in writing — about every movie I see because I don’t have a choice, it’s the way I am. I share it because I have the ability and it doesn’t seem to bother anyone. With that said, if it becomes somehow stressful or burdensome, I would of course have some thoughts about hanging it up.
This brings us to one of those three reviews that is currently near the top of the chronological pile: American History X. I don’t have word or paragraph counts for these things on record anywhere but from memory, I’m reasonably sure it’s one of the longest pieces ever posted here and I would be surprised if it’s not the longest extremely negative review that’s made it all the way to any of my blogs. I watched American History X for this blog — and for the second time in my life — more than six months ago. I sketched out an outline and a rough-hewn writeup from my notes about two weeks later. But when I got ready to polish it and post it last week, I was extremely unhappy. Do you know how when you praise something that you really really love, you can almost by default find yourself resorting to vague platitudes? This was the opposite. The film angered me so much that my arguments against it became shorthand, based so much on the specifics of my own emotional reaction that there would be no reason for anyone else to read what I had said, to get anything out of it, and while I would again insist that this is all done because I enjoy it, there’s not much point in making it publicly visible if it’s of no outward value.
Thus, last week, when I should have been starting to write this thing you’re reading now, I did a complete overhaul of the X review and it took up way too much time. It involved approaching every point I had considered important to touch on back in September and clarifying it piece by piece. It took days. It involved me finding a copy of the film again and consulting portions of it, spending more time with it than I really wanted to. Once I had pages and pages of raw material, I spent about three hours this week — after the post was already scheduled to be online — turning it into a coherent review. Whether the results are praiseworthy or not, I feel like it’s a very good and level-headed piece of writing. It is not a professional piece — it has no eye toward word count and has not been edited by anyone except me, and I’m not great at editing my own stuff. But the amount of work I put into it is as much as I ever have in a paid, commissioned situation. And this to make very, very clear why I hate a movie that I hate with every fiber of my being. That’s really a bit fucked up, the more I go over it in my head.
The truth is that while many who get a kick out of prattling formally on about art adore writing negative criticism, I loathe that process. I find it tedious and draining with very little reward. It was hard to write something that made sense about, for instance, Psycho and 2001 in the first year I was doing this, but that was an enjoyable exercise because I love those films and it pleases me to go “on record,” so to speak, about my responses to them at length. That’s the sort of thing that prompted me to create this blog and doesn’t make me feel guilty about contributing in my own small way to the perception that this stuff doesn’t warrant being compensated. I can say that I spent hours working on a Vertigo review because I love it and get pleasure from watching and analyzing it. Every minute I spend dealing with American History X feels less like a pain in the ass, not a hobby. I have a day job. That’s supposed to be the pain-in-the-ass part of my life.
What’s my point? Basically, that — for lots of reasons — there will be fewer long-form negative reviews here in the future. That was always something I planned in the back of my mind, but it’s going to become increasingly apparent in the next hundred and especially the next two to three hundred posts. It’s not that I think bad reviews are necessarily uninformative. The review of the Tony Kaye film is really painstakingly thought out, much more so than the writeups you’ll see just below it of Vacation from Marriage and Dementia, lovely movies I’ve just discovered in the last year. My reviews of those films are very much in the voice of a fan, which I think is fine — they are too obscure for heady and widely scoped analysis to be really valuable to anyone likely to read this blog, and my prime utility is to champion them succinctly. Platitudes can take over in that direction too, but it seems less egregious a problem when you’re not basically slandering with a crude and confused brush.
Writing, rewriting and rewriting again is not a working method I envisioned for this project; the best way to keep my desire to maintain some semblance of consistent quality here is to divert the temptation to spend loads of time on something that isn’t really going to be a blast to work through or look back on. American History X is the handiest example but not the only one. Other extensively, disproportionately meddled-with reviews include those for Life Is Beautiful, Léon, and two yet to be posted: Aliens and The Dark Knight Rises, both of which have been “finished” for months but won’t likely be “finished finished” for several more. Amusingly, in designing the blog’s structure in 2011 I expected the gradually increasing number of capsules to be occupied with neutral or noncommittal reviews rather than those on either extreme. On the contrary, disappointments or relatively neutral opinions seem to make the most interesting reviews and the easiest ones to write — unclouded by any sort of deep, fiery passion. Still, writing isn’t much fun without some passion — I doubt that any film I love will not someday receive a full-fledged essay from me.
One other note of mild insecurity has been born of the controversy over movie critics not writing about visual content enough, the accusation often being that many scribes may as well be reviewing novels. This is something I don’t think I fall into too much, although this may be a poor week to be defending myself — all three of the current reviews are of narrative films with very little visual identity of any artistic signifiance. (The flashback sequences in Frears’ Philomena are an exception.) The only note I really keep in my head when putting these things together is to try and communicate the experience of watching the movie, of the emotional response therein. This is as often visual as it is narrative anyway, but it’s my hope that my allergy to plot summaries keeps my literary impulse to solely concentrate on story points in check. The visual element is what matters most to me anyway, but how does one properly communicate that? In a way, every successive review is sort of an act of refining answers to questions like these.
Besides the three most recent, other reviews in the last hundred that I think are especially good examples of this blog working the way I want it to are: The House on 92nd Street, Once Upon a Time in the West, Marie-Louise, 12 Years a Slave, The Empire Strikes Back, The Dark Knight, The Scoundrel, The Bling Ring, Fargo, The Thief and the Cobbler, Blade Runner (yeah, a takedown, but one I’ve wanted to put into words for many years), Toy Story, Magic Mike, The Manchurian Candidate, The Birth of a Nation, Fantasia, and my likely favorite of the posted pieces so far, Rebel Without a Cause. Reviews I wish I could have worked harder on or made better would be The Quiet Man, Yankee Doodle Dandy, The Pianist, One Way Passage, and Pygmalion.
Generally things are moving along at a clip here at SOC. Parallel to the projects that are the bread and butter around here we have flown into space with the film I most looked forward to over the last several years, Gravity, sunken into the horrors of chicken-leg fellatio with the dreadful Killer Joe, and — most shocking of all — fallen in love with a Tarantino film, Jackie Brown. Completely by accident as a result of my duties here, I saw every major Oscar contender of 2013, including all of the Best Picture nominees and most of the fixtures in other categories, the only big exception being August, Osage County. If not for the ever-violently lurching IMDB Top 250, I would not have seen The Wolf of Wall Street, but its briefly high placement on that list necessitated a visit. Several of the movies in play at the 86th Academy Awards won’t be covered here for a while yet, but it was refreshing and fun to have an informed opinion — for the first time ever — on the lion’s share of nominated films. (Outside of those, the movies I/we saw theatrically during the relevant period were: The Conjuring, Monsters University, Much Ado About Nothing, Blue Jasmine, The World’s End, Blackfish, The Spectacular Now, Rush, Enough Said and All Is Lost. That’s a lot of damn soda ads and cell phone warnings.)
So about that IMDB list. Right now I’m on the verge of breaching the #100 spot in my viewing activity; if that’s any indication, I should have the thing finished up in about a year. Surprises have been scant, and there are times on this one when I feel as if I’m regressing to my thirteen year-old identity, though when faced with the likes of Memento, The Usual Suspects and Se7en it should be admitted that the adolescents are on to something. This is the final list project I completed the first time I tried to do something like this back in the 2006-08 period — now as then, it probably is more instructive about movie fandom than about movies themselves, but yet again, the idea here is to have expansive thoughts posted on these major, often cultish titles even if I frequently dread having to write about them. (What can I really tell you about Terminator 2 and Donnie Darko?) Reviews have been written of almost the entire top 100 at this point, but we have some way to go before everything is fully posted.
Inevitably, I have found the Best Screenplay runthrough — the third part of the Oscars project — the more interesting endeavor. There were so many wonderful films in the ’30s to investigate, including at least a couple (The Scoundrel, significantly) that I strongly doubt I would ever have seen otherwise. Others, like Manhattan Melodrama and The Big House, I’ve wanted to watch for years; a disproportionate number of these have required trips to the Warner Archive supply, a pricey thing to have to use but thus far almost consistently worth it. Bootlegs have also come around and we have to be grateful for the illegal distributors of classic-movie world. Without them, there’s absolutely no way that reviews of Marie-Louise or Arise, My Love, among others, could have been possible. Marie-Louise especially has dwindled into such obscurity that — and this is a bit of a mindfuck — my essay about it here is the only extensive writing about it currently available on the net.
Warner Archive gave us Vacation from Marriage, a delightful and splendidly melancholy comedy that deserves your attention and money, a shady streaming video site kept us happily swimming in the impeccable Seven Days to Noon, and what do you know — you can still find legitimate DVDs for rental or library checkout of some terrific films, like Love Me or Leave Me, The House on 92nd Street and Splendor in the Grass, all huge and welcome surprises. In general this has been the most instructive and absorbing project yet undertaken here, and it will likely remain such until we cycle around to the same category’s nominees. At the moment my stubbornly sequential viewing habits have taken us all the way into the mid-’60s. Father Goose, in fact, is waiting for me as I type this. It’s possible but not likely that I may begin to take on Best Actor before we reach the 500th post. For the moment, there is still a great deal left to see.
I suppose I have shown my hand, though. When Screenplay is finished it’s on to Actor, then Actress (both of which will be quicker than Picture and Screenplay but much, much longer than Director), Supporting Actor and Actress (these will take about as long as Best Picture did, I think), and then the nominees. It’s an undertaking, which is why we have the other lists to provide an antidote to Oscar prestige. But I am not telling you what will follow the 250 — except to say that it will probably be an alternating setup, whereby we have multiple non-Oscar projects running concurrently so that one doesn’t get terribly boring to us.
That should bring us all up to speed. I welcome any thoughts or questions you might have.
There’s not a lot to report here. In the last milestone post, I already went over the Screenplay list in its entirety and nothing has changed in that regard. (Both 2013 winners will have been reviewed separately from the project.) Besides those already noted previously, the films coming up in the back half of the IMDB 250 that I have never seen are: Like Stars on Earth, The Hunt (which I am quite excited about), 3 Idiots, My Neighbor Totoro, Rang De Basanti, Into the Wild, How to Train Your Dragon, Mary and Max, The Lego Movie, Incendies, Hachi, Captain America: The Winter Soldier (not betting much money on this still being on the list by the time we reach it), In the Name of the Father, Persona, Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind, and Lagaan, which brings us into the 200s. It’s not looking like we have much chance of reaching beyond that before another milestone post comes up.
In the only mildly possible event that we take on Best Actor in the next few months, we will open that project with a slew of performances new to us: Emil Jannings in The Last Command and The Way of All Flesh, Warner Baxter in In Old Arizona, George Arliss in Disraeli, Lionel Barrymore in A Free Soul, Frederic March in Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, and at long last, Charles Laughton in The Private Life of Henry VIII.
IMPOSSIBILITIES & SUBJECTS FOR FURTHER RESEARCH
On occasion, in our various projects here we will undoubtedly encounter films that we absolutely cannot see no matter how hard we try, and believe me, we will be trying. So far we have had just one such case.
The Patriot (1928, Ernst Lubitsch)
This Oscar winner for writing is unfortunately, as of right now, a lost film — probably the most anxiously sought after in existence with the exception of Murnau’s 4 Devils and Hitchcock’s The Mountain Eagle. If I’m not mistaken, it’s the only major Academy Award winner to have vanished. Its (highly entertaining) trailer is all that remains. Based on what we know, it looks like quite a rollicking and ambitious piece. Given its director, its absence from circulation can only be termed a major disappointment.
Below: nine films that couldn’t or shouldn’t warrant complete reviews here, for varying reasons I will do my best to explain. Four of these films were part of the Best Screenplay project; one was an IMDB Top 250 title. Their placement here doesn’t necessarily mean they are bad, but sometimes they are.
The Strange Case of Angelica (2010, Manoel de Oliveira) !! CAUTION !!
Not meaning to cast a cynical eye on the dramatic choices of a filmmaker past 100, but this is an extremely silly story, performed broadly — which is the only way the rather vague dialogue will allow. I laughed at more than one inappropriate moment toward the end, and up until then any lyricism is drowned out by the mystical mumbo-jumbo of both the ghost story and the looking-off-into-the-distance-saying-profound-things mooniness. The Chopin music is pretty stunning, anyway.
Bernie (2011, Richard Linklater) !! CAUTION !!
Can’t suss out what Linklater wants us to get out of his straightforward, Coen Brothers-like, vaguely condescending telling of a not terribly interesting small town Texas murder story. Are we supposed to just think it’s automatically funny because it involves churchgoing normals with funny mustaches? I love black comedies, but my definition of the genre doesn’t really incorporate mocking portrayals of dead women whose demises we’re supposed to see as ambiguously moral because, uh, they were “mean.” (Are we meant to extrapolate a feel-good story from this about how a certain percentage of gun violence victims in the U.S. are probably jerks anyway? Because that sure sounds like coded NRA propganda to me.) All I end up getting out of this baffling hodgepodge of talking heads and crassly deadpan “humor” is what a waste it is to put the luminous master Shirley MacLaine on a screen with a couple of assclowny nincompoops like Jack Black and Matthew McConaughey.
Cosmopolis (2012, David Cronenberg) !!!!! AVOID !!!!!
Badly performed, sub-Cinemax pseudo-intellectual claptrap, like a TED talk with sex scenes. Cronenberg bounces back from the dull-as-dishwater A Dangerous Method to return to the kind of unwatchably turgid tripe he graced us with in the ’80s. Hooray? (Ideal for a drunken awful-awful-awful movie night, anyway.)
Boys Town (1938, Norman Taurog)
Syrupy, uninspired based-on-a-true-story MGM social problem picture escapes the proto-Going My Way doldrums strictly thanks to Spencer Tracy and Mickey Rooney’s gently emotional, compassionate performances — and Taurog’s surprisingly confident, agile direction. As in Skippy, he enlivens a rather drab story with several strong visuals, though this time he’s also saddled with one of the most abrupt third-act turnarounds I can recall seeing. The upshot is that the film changes tone and direction too many times to really pursue any of its various utilities to completion, falling back finally on easy sentiment that its gritty background doesn’t warrant.
The Human Comedy (1943, Clarence Brown) !! CAUTION !!
No wartime rationing of schmaltz, I guess. (If you walk into my library and repeatedly say “all these! all these!” I will call the cops.)
Post Tenebras Lux (2012, Carlos Reygadas) !! CAUTION !!
Dear smart, gifted young filmmakers: please stop letting Malick’s relentless self-enabling influence you.
Wilson (1944, Henry King) !!!!! AVOID !!!!!
Insipid, superficial Technicolor biopic-lovefest from Darryl Zanuck starring babyfaced Alexander Knox glosses over, among other things, titular president’s famously nasty racism, showing him fawning over Lincoln portraits and making nice with black federal employees who in reality were driven out of their jobs under his watch. Actual dialogue from warm loving scene at home with zombie-wife: “Your work at Princeton is done. You believe in the principles of democratic equality, the abolition of any special privileged class!” Slightly pared-down dialogue from a daughter being given her first tour of the White House: “The Emancipation Proclamation was signed in this room… Hey, they have three cars here!”
The Stratton Story (1949, Sam Wood)
Unremittingly jolly and slick baseball biopic — it can’t even find more than five minutes to let its hero be sad about having to have a leg amputated — shows Sam Wood succumbing to the MGM anonymity more than usual, but is watchable thanks to James Stewart and June Allyson’s unsurprisingly luminous lead performances, while Agnes Moorehead accidentally gets some comic mileage out of Stratton’s unflappably dour mother. But at nearly every turn, the film ignores its opportunities to do anything interesting, despite a story that encompasses hobos, dance lessons and slot machines.
The Intouchables (2011, Olivier Nakache & Eric Toledano)
Ordinary, inexplicably popular story of an unlikely friendship between a paralyzed man and his caregiver: one is rich, one is poor, one is white, one is black, and guess what? Each kind of attains some of the traits of the other, and each learns valuable life lessons from their interactions! It’s hard to get mad at this crowd-pleaser, especially when it’s genuinely funny at times, and it isn’t as offensive as I thought it would be — though the oft-voiced attitude toward women is rather crass. Performances are excellent, especially by Omar Sy and Anne Le Ny, but it’s almost bold just how obvious and clichéd this is.
LIST: BEST ENDINGS.
(Obviously, this is spoiler heavy for lots of films. I tried to phrase everything somewhat vaguely, so… scroll fast if you don’t know a film? I dunno, people.)
1. The Third Man (1949, Carol Reed): The final shot is not just beautiful, it’s a fulfillment of a promise — to a dead man’s integrity, and to the film audience.
2. Vertigo (1958, Alfred Hitchcock): It all happens so fast you’re out of breath.
3. City Lights (1931, Charles Chaplin): “You can see?”
4. The Birds (1963, Alfred Hitchcock): The best of all apocalyptic movie endings; its ambiguity is sublime and even silently incorporates closure for all of the major characters.
5. Manhattan (1979, Woody Allen): Beautiful in every way, and also a signal that the Allen persona will be permanently left reeling from its agonized, self-involved paranoia while the world moves on — a lovely, bitter pill.
6. Melancholia (2011, Lars von Trier): No words needed, really; everything must break apart.
7. The Searchers (1956, John Ford): Profound and poetic, an illustration of passing time and evolving culture embodied in what in lesser hands could have just been a “my work is done here” moment.
8. Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981, Steven Spielberg): As with The Birds above, a boldly pessimistic ending for such a rousing audience-friendly adventure.
9. Cinema Paradiso (1988, Giuseppe Tornatore): This film often wanders ineffectively, but its achingly nostalgic final scene — wrought by nothing more than a reel of film — is so devastating that it nearly justifies every prior indulgence.
10. Broadcast News (1987, James L. Brooks): There may be no film whose ending feels less like a lie.
11. The Graduate (1967, Mike Nichols): Without the final moments of that two-shot, this would be a considerably less memorable and more innocuous film — with them, it’s a shattering commentary on youthful relationships and malaise.
12. All About Eve (1950, Joseph L. Mankiewicz): The cycle of deceit, idolatry and fearsome conformity at the core of show business summed up in one sublime shot.
13. Dr. Strangelove (1964, Stanley Kubrick): Wow, the world ends a lot on this list. But Kubrick somehow makes it a sweet, even lyrical experience using nothing but stock footage.
14. Casablanca (1942, Michael Curtiz): You know it by heart. It’s still magnificent.
15. The 400 Blows (1959, Francois Truffaut): The only justified freeze frame ending, but quite apart from that, a closing moment that captures like no other cinematic moment the sensation of freedom.
16. One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest (1975, Milos Forman): I don’t care for this film at all, but its final moments are indeed glorious — the lighting, the performances, the violent action at its center, everything.
17. Margaret (2011, Kenneth Lonergan): There are movies that made me cry in their closing moments, and there are movies that made me cry in their closing moments.
18. No Country for Old Men (2007, Joel & Ethan Coen): What a memory — sitting in a dark theater stunned by the cut to black. Imitated endlessly already, but never with such boldness or bleakness.
19. Freaks (1932, Tod Browning): Genuinely terrifying, something that (for me) movies seldom manage. That it’s also sort of funny helps rather than hurts.
20. 2001 (1968, Stanley Kubrick): This should probably be higher, except that separating its finale from anything else seems arbitrary. Still, if your heart doesn’t swell up when the baby looks at you and then “The Blue Danube” starts again…
21. Black Narcissus (1947, Michael Powell & Emeric Pressburger): Kind of a cheat since it was already named in the shots list, but — the moment when the rains come is the kind of thing that makes you think “oh, yes, I get it. Movies!”
22. Dogville (2004, Lars von Trier): Flippant and senseless but the only way this could climax properly — you’re meant to be repelled but also to take part in it, one reason this is such a stirring treatise on violence and power.
23. Network (1976, Sidney Lumet): Voiceover and everything. It’s the perfect tone on which to leave the perfect satire, and it still feels increasingly, frighteningly real.
24. Greenberg (2010, Noah Baumbach): If only more movies left so much unsaid.
25. Dawn of the Dead (1978, George A. Romero): The cyclical ending isn’t too original, though it is elegant, but what I love is the way the tasteless Muzak kicks in and propels us into the credits. The ideal microcosm of this odd, beautiful film.
26. The Awful Truth (1937, Leo McCarey): The sexiest movie ending in Hollywood history.
27. Synecdoche, New York (2008, Charlie Kaufman): Hard now to talk about this, but yes indeed. Oddly I’ve always found it left me with a warm, elated feeling. Die.
28. The Best Years of Our Lives (1946, William Wyler): Our lives aren’t worth much if we don’t have at least one opportunity to meet a loved one’s eyes across a crowded room like that.
29. Jackie Brown (1997, Quentin Tarantino): This spot would’ve belonged to Boys Don’t Cry, but it appears that film cribbed this one. Driving off into oblivion, into the future — a feeling of overwhelming hope and apprehension.
30. Paths of Glory (1957, Stanley Kubrick): Fear and desire melting hearts. Only tangentially related to the narrative, which in a film documenting such madness is the idea.
31. King Kong (1933, Merian C. Cooper & Ernest B. Schoedsack): See Casablanca.
32. Chinatown (1974, Roman Polanski): See King Kong.
33. Repulsion (1965, Roman Polanski): Chills, even just thinking about it.
34. Citizen Kane (1941, Orson Welles): See Chinatown.
35. True Grit (2010, Joel & Ethan Coen): Cribs its tone from several of Clint Eastwood’s films but significantly improves upon them — the note of sadness it strikes so oddly lingers long after the rest of this movie.
36. Gone with the Wind (1939, Victor Fleming): See Citizen Kane.
37. The Maltese Falcon (1941, John Huston): Not merely the line, the way he says the line — almost like he knows we’re listening.
38. Boys Don’t Cry (1999, Kimberly Peirce): See Jackie Brown.
39. Full Metal Jacket (1987, Stanley Kubrick): That monologue voiceover just gets me, as does the “Mickey Mouse Club” chorus, as does — most of all — the way the Stones kick in.
40. Batman (1966, Leslie Martinson): Funniest of all movie endings, sticking it to the audience with a bizarre, jokingly melancholy tone. No way a modern Batman film would end with Batman fucking up and trying his best to spit out an excuse.
41. The Blair Witch Project (1999, Daniel Myrick & Eduardo Sanchez): See Repulsion.
42. Blackmail (1929, Alfred Hitchcock): The beginning of an idea later demonstrated by everything from Psycho to Deliverance to Friday the 13th — the terrifying sensation that something still lurks out there, here a painting with a hidden piece of evidence attached, all merged with a hint of madness and a critique of casual misogyny. Have we mentioned lately that this director was really fucking great?
43. Back to the Future Part II (1989, Robert Zemeckis): We love cliffhangers around here, and this is one of the best ever in any medium, both for its left-field mystery and the parallel existence it neatly draws up with the first film. (Please note: I love the endings of both The Dark Knight and The Empire Strikes Back far more than the respective movies themselves, for similar reasons.)
44. Fantasia (1940, various directors): Hesitant to include this since it isn’t really a narrative film, but the spiritual awakening followed by sudden fade out is a Vertigo-like moment that still leaves you overwhelmed.
45. Days of Wine and Roses (1963, Blake Edwards): Pop psychology or not, this is enormously downbeat and therefore strangely satisfying.
46. Psycho (1960, Alfred Hitchcock): See Blackmail.
47. Duel (1971, Steven Spielberg): Spielberg’s first three films (counting this one) all have essentially the same ending: a person catching his or her breath after a defeat of a monster or (in Sugarland) oneself or (here) both. It ends at just the moment it should.
48. The Seventh Seal (1957, Ingmar Bergman): Literal dancing at the edge of Death.
49. 7th Heaven (1927, Frank Borzage): From the shaken wandering through the crowd to the stairs to the reunion, almost too much to endure.
50. Room at the Top (1959, Jack Clayton): The boldest of boldly cynical conclusions, the most pessimistic and drab wedding in history, making Match Point seem downright cheery.
51. I Am a Fugitive from a Chain Gang (1932, Mervyn LeRoy)
52. Dead of Night (1945, Cavalcanti et al.)
53. Eyes Wide Shut (1999, Stanley Kubrick)
54. Brazil (1985, Terry Gilliam)
55. Gravity (2013, Alfonso Cuaron)
56. Shoot the Piano Player (1960, Francois Truffaut)
57. Deliverance (1971, John Boorman)
58. Fahrenheit 451 (1966, Francois Truffaut)
59. Diabolique (1955, Henri-Georges Clouzot)
60. Beauty & the Beast (1946, Jean Cocteau)
61. Night of the Living Dead (1968, George A. Romero)
62. The Godfather (1972, Francis Ford Coppola)
63. Some Like It Hot (1959, Billy Wilder)
64. Bottle Rocket (1996, Wes Anderson)
65. San Francisco (1936, W.S. Van Dyke)
66. Paris, Texas (1984, Wim Wenders)
67. Seven Samurai (1954, Akira Kurosawa)
68. Roman Holiday (1953, William Wyler)
69. Sunset Blvd. (1950, Billy Wilder)
70. Let the Right One In (2008, Tomas Alfredson)
71. Se7en (1995, David Fincher)
72. Being John Malkovich (1999, Spike Jonze)
73. Treasure of the Sierra Madre (1948, John Huston)
74. Duck Soup (1933, Leo McCarey)
75. About Schmidt (2002, Alexander Payne)
76. Happiness (1998, Todd Solondz)
77. M (1931, Fritz Lang)
78. Lost in Translation (2003, Sofia Coppola)
79. Ace in the Hole (1951, Billy Wilder)
80. The Conversation (1974, Francis Ford Coppola)
81. 12 Angry Men (1957, Sidney Lumet)
82. Das Boot (1982, Wolfgang Petersen)
83. The Apartment (1960, Billy Wilder)
84. Moonrise Kingdom (2012, Wes Anderson)
85. Modern Times (1936, Charles Chaplin)
86. The Turin Horse (2011, Bela Tarr)
87. Midnight Cowboy (1969, John Schlesinger)
88. All Quiet on the Western Front (1930, Lewis Milestone)
89. Kind Hearts and Coronets (1949, Robert Hamer)
90. L’age d’Or (1930, Luis Bunuel)
91. The Bridge on the River Kwai (1957, David Lean)
92. Monsters, Inc. (2001, Pete Docter)
93. Amadeus (1984, Milos Forman)
94. The Sugarland Express (1973, Steven Spielberg)
95. The Killing (1956, Stanley Kubrick)
96. Up in the Air (2009, Jason Reitman)
97. Targets (1968, Peter Bogdanovich)
98. Toy Story 3 (2010, Lee Unkrich)
99. The French Connection (1971, William Friedkin)
100. Do the Right Thing (1989, Spike Lee)
101. Dancer in the Dark (2000, Lars von Trier)
INDEX OF POSTS SO FAR.
[If you want this alphabetically, you can use the Movie Guide above; if you want it chronologically, you can use the categories at right.]
1. introductory post
2. Exit Through the Gift Shop (2010, Banksy) [hr]
3. [not yet posted publicly]
4. Up in the Air (2009, Jason Reitman) [hr]
5. The Curious Case of Benjamin Button (2008, David Fincher) [r]
6. [not yet posted publicly]
7. Rango (2011, Gore Verbinski) [-]
8. Inception (2010, Christopher Nolan) [c]
9. [not yet posted publicly]
10. Black Swan (2010, Darren Aronofsky) [r]
11. Strange Powers: Stephin Merritt and the Magnetic Fields (2010, Kerthy Fix & Gail O’Hara) [r]
12. Bridesmaids (2011, Paul Feig) [r]
13. [not yet posted publicly]
14. The King’s Speech (2010, Tom Hooper) [r]
15. Citizen Kane (1941, Orson Welles) [A+]
16. Slumdog Millionaire (2008, Danny Boyle) [-]
17. The Tree of Life (2011, Terrence Malick) [NO]
18. Life During Wartime (2009, Todd Solondz) [hr]
19. Moon (2009, Duncan Jones) [r]
20. Let the Right One In (2008, Tomas Alfredson) [r]
21. The Hurt Locker (2008, Kathryn Bigelow) [r]
22. Scott Pilgrim vs. the World (2010, Edgar Wright) [r]
23. Notorious (1946, Alfred Hitchcock) [A+]
24. A Serious Man (2009, Joel & Ethan Coen) [hr]
25. Whatever Works (2009, Woody Allen) [r]
26. Certified Copy (2010, Abbas Kiarostami) [-]
27. You Will Meet a Tall Dark Stranger (2010, Woody Allen) [hr]
28. Milk (2008, Gus Van Sant) [hr]
29. The Informant! (2009, Steven Soderbergh) [r]
30. Melancholia (2011, Lars von Trier) [A+]
31. Frost/Nixon (2008, Ron Howard) [r]
32. 127 Hours (2010, Danny Boyle) [hr]
33. Hugo (2011, Martin Scorsese) [r]
34. The Kids Are All Right (2010, Lisa Cholodenko) [-]
35. Dead of Night (1945, Cavalcanti / Charles Crichton / Basil Dearden / Robert Hamer) [r]
36. The Illusionist (2010, Sylvain Chomet) [r]
37. Super 8 (2011, J.J. Abrams) [r]
38. Rachel Getting Married (2008, Jonathan Demme) [-]
39. Inside Job (2010, Charles Ferguson) [r]
40. Patterns (1956, Fielder Cook) [hr]
41. The Godfather (1972, Francis Ford Coppola) [-]
42. Wings (1927, William A. Wellman) [r]
43. The Broadway Melody (1929, Harry Beaumont) [-]
44. All Quiet on the Western Front (1930, Lewis Milestone) [A+]
45. Cimarron (1931, Wesley Ruggles) [c]
46. Grand Hotel (1932, Edmund Goulding) [r]
47. Casablanca (1942, Michael Curtiz) [A+]
48. Raging Bull (1980, Martin Scorsese) [c]
49. Singin’ in the Rain (1952, Stanley Donen & Gene Kelly) [A+]
50. Gone with the Wind (1939, Victor Fleming) [A+]
51. Lawrence of Arabia (1962, David Lean) [c]
52. Cavalcade (1933, Frank Lloyd) [c]
53. A Separation (2011, Asghar Farhadi) [hr]
54. It Happened One Night (1934, Frank Capra) [A+]
55. Mutiny on the Bounty (1936, Frank Lloyd) [r]
56. Drive (2011, Nicholas Winding Refn) [NO]
57. Meek’s Cutoff (2010, Kelly Reichardt) [r]
58. Antichrist (2009, Lars von Trier) [hr]
59. The Great Ziegfeld (1936, Robert Z. Leonard) [-]
60. Schindler’s List (1993, Steven Spielberg) [A+]
61. The Life of Emile Zola (1937, William Dieterle) [r]
62. You Can’t Take It with You (1938, Frank Capra) [r]
63. Rebecca (1940, Alfred Hitchcock) [A+]
64. How Green Was My Valley (1941, John Ford) [c]
65. Mrs. Miniver (1942, William Wyler) [hr]
66. Vertigo (1958, Alfred Hitchcock) [A+]
67. The Wizard of Oz (1939, Victor Fleming) [A+]
68. Going My Way (1944, Leo McCarey) [NO]
69. The Lost Weekend (1945, Billy Wilder) [r]
70. City Lights (1931, Charles Chaplin) [A+]
71. The Ghost Writer (2010, Roman Polanski) [r]
72. The Lavender Hill Mob (1951, Charles Crichton) [hr]
73. The Searchers (1956, John Ford) [hr]
74. Star Wars (1977, George Lucas) [c]
75. Psycho (1960, Alfred Hitchcock) [A+]
76. The Best Years of Our Lives (1946, William Wyler) [A+]
77. Footnote (2011, Joseph Cedar) [hr]
78. Winter’s Bone (2010, Debra Granik) [hr]
79. True Grit (2010, Joel & Ethan Coen)
80. Shortbus (2006, John Cameron Mitchell) [r]
81. Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past Lives 92010, Apichatpong Weerasethakul) [NO]
82. Gentleman’s Agreement (1947, Elia Kazan) [c]
83. Somewhere (2010, Sofia Coppola) [hr]
84. [not yet posted publicly]
85. Hamlet (1948, Laurence Olivier) [r]
86. Enter the Void (2009, Gaspar Noe)
87. 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968, Stanley Kubrick) [A+]
88. Sunset Blvd. (1950, Billy Wilder) [A+]
89. The Graduate (1967, Mike Nichols) [A+]
90. The General (1926, Buster Keaton & Clyde Bruckman) [hr]
91. Carlos (2010, Olivier Assayas) [r]
92. On the Waterfront (1954, Elia Kazan) [-]
93. [not yet posted publicly]
94. Gods and Monsters (1998, Bill Condon) [r]
95. White Material (2009, Claire Denis) [hr]
96. All the King’s Men (1949, Robert Rossen) [-]
97. The Kid with a Bike (2011, Jean-Pierre & Luc Dardenne) [r]
98. It’s a Wonderful Life (1946, Frank Capra) [hr]
99. [forthcoming: The Social Network]
100. [post 100 / shots list etc.]
101. All About Eve (1950, Joseph L. Mankiewicz) [A+]
102. An American in Paris (1951, Vincente Minnelli) [-]
103. Chinatown (1974, Roman Polanski) [A+]
104. Some Like It Hot (1959, Billy Wilder) [hr]
105. The Grapes of Wrath (1940, John Ford) [-]
106. E.T. the Extra Terrestrial (1982, Steven Spielberg) [-]
107. The Greatest Show on Earth (1952, Cecil B. DeMille) [r]
108. To Kill a Mockingbird (1962, Robert Mulligan) [c]
109. Moonrise Kingdom (2012, Wes Anderson) [hr]
110. From Here to Eternity (1953, Fred Zinnemann) [r]
111. Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy (2011, Tomas Alfredson) [hr]
112. Marty (1955, Delbert Mann) [r]
113. Mr. Smith Goes to Washington (1939, Frank Capra) [hr]
114. High Noon (1952, Fred Zinnemann) [c]
115. Around the World in Eighty Days (1956, Michael Anderson) [NO]
116. Double Indemnity (1944, Billy Wilder) [A+]
117. A Midnight Clear (1992, Keith Gordon) [hr]
118. Apocalypse Now (1979, Francis Ford Coppola) [r]
119. The Bridge on the River Kwai (1957, David Lean) [hr]
120. Beasts of the Southern Wild (2012, Benh Zeitlin) [A+]
121. Gigi (1958, Vincente Minnelli) [NO]
122. The Skin I Live In (2011, Pedro Almodovar) [r]
123. Ben-Hur (1959, William Wyler) [r]
124. The Apartment (1960, Billy Wilder) [A+]
125. To Rome with Love (2012, Woody Allen) [r]
126. The Maltese Falcon (1941, John Huston) [hr]
127. The Trial (1962, Orson Welles) [A+]
128. The Godfather Part II (1974, Francis Ford Coppola) [r]
129. One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest (1975, Milos Forman) [-]
130. Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (1937, David Hand) [A+]
131. Annie Hall (1977, Woody Allen) [A+]
132. Purple Rain (1984, Albert Magnoli) [-]
133. West Side Story (1961, Robert Wise & Jerome Robbins) [r]
134. Tom Jones (1963, Tony Richardson) [-]
135. The Turin Horse (2011, Bela Tarr) [hr]
136. Mother Night (1996, Keith Gordon) [r]
137. My Fair Lady (1964, George Cukor) [NO]
138. The Treasure of the Sierra Madre (1948, John Huston) [A+]
139. Shutter Island (2010, Martin Scorsese) [NO]
140. Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb (1964, Stanley Kubrick) [A+]
141. The Sound of Music (1965, Robert Wise) [r]
142. King Kong (1933, Merian C. Cooper & Ernest B. Schoedsack) [hr]
143. Another Earth (2011, Mike Cahill) [hr]
144. Shadows (1959, John Cassavetes) [-]
145. A Man for All Seasons (1966, Fred Zinnemann) [r]
146. In the Heat of the Night (1967, Norman Jewison) [-]
147. Oliver! (1968, Carol Reed) [NO]
148. Greenberg (2010, Noah Baumbach) [hr]
149. Bonnie and Clyde (1967, Arthur Penn) [hr]
150. Midnight Cowboy (1969, John Schlesinger) [hr]
151. Jesus Camp (2006, Heidi Ewing & Rachel Grady) [-]
152. The Philadelphia Story (1940, George Cukor) [r]
153. Le Havre (2011, Aki Kaurismaki) [c]
154. Patton (1970, Franklin J. Schaffner) [-]
155. The French Connection (1971, William Friedkin) [A+]
156. Tess (1979, Roman Polanski) [-]
157. Shane (1953, George Stevens) [r]
158. A Streetcar Named Desire (1951, Elia Kazan) [r]
159. The Sting (1973, George Roy Hill) [r]
160. Rocky (1976, John G. Avildsen) [c]
161. Rear Window (1954, Alfred Hitchcock) [A+]
162. Mysteries of Lisbon (2010, Raoul Ruiz) [r]
163. The Deer Hunter (1978, Michael Cimino) [NO]
164. Kramer vs. Kramer (1979, Robert Benton) [r]
165. Ordinary People (1980, Robert Redford) [c]
166. A Dangerous Method (2011, David Cronenberg) [-]
167. The Master (2012, Paul Thomas Anderson) [hr]
168. Another Year (2010, Mike Leigh) [r]
169. Frankenweenie (2012, Tim Burton) [hr]
170. Intolerance (1916, D.W. Griffith) [-]
171. Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring (2001, Peter Jackson) [c]
172. Margaret (2011, Kenneth Lonergan) [hr]
173. Taxi Driver (1976, Martin Scorsese) [c]
174. Looper (2012, Rian Johnson) [c]
175. Chariots of Fire (1981, Hugh Hudson) [-]
176. Gandhi (1982, Richard Attenborough) [r]
177. Terms of Endearment (1983, James L. Brooks) [hr]
178. Point of Order (1964, Emile de Antonio) [hr]
179. MASH (1970, Robert Altman) [-]
180. Argo (2012, Ben Affleck) [hr]
181. North by Northwest (1959, Alfred Hitchcock) [A+]
182. Amadeus (1984, Milos Forman) [hr]
183. Skyfall (2012, Sam Mendes) [r]
184. Flight (2012, Robert Zemeckis) [r]
185. Jaws (1975, Steven Spielberg) [A+]
186. Lincoln (2012, Steven Spielberg) [r]
187. The Gold Rush (1925, Charles Chaplin) [hr]
188. [not yet publicly posted]
189. Once Upon a Time in Anatolia (2011, Nuri Bilge Ceylan) [r]
190. Nashville (1975, Robert Altman) [r]
191. Dark Horse (2011, Todd Solondz) [hr]
192. [forthcoming: Back to the Future]
193. [not yet publicly posted]
194. Frankenstein (1931, James Whale) [hr]
195. Duck Soup (1933, Leo McCarey) [hr]
196. Sullivan’s Travels (1941, Preston Sturges) [A+]
197. Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade (1989, Steven Spielberg) [hr]
198. Poetry (2010, Lee Chang-dong) [-]
199. American Graffiti (1973, George Lucas) [c]
200. [post 200 / directors list etc.]
201. Platoon (1986, Oliver Stone) [c]
202. The Last Emperor (1987, Bernardo Bertolucci) [-]
203. Rain Man (1988, Barry Levinson) [c]
204. [The Best Movies of 2012]
205. Silver Linings Playbook (2012, David O. Russell) [r]
206. Young Adult (2011, Jason Reitman) [-]
207. Cabaret (1972, Bob Fosse) [-]
208. Network (1976, Sidney Lumet) [A+]
209. The African Queen (1951, John Huston) [hr]
210. Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981, Steven Spielberg) [hr]
211. Diary of a Lost Girl (1929, Georg Wilhelm Pabst) [hr]
212. My Architect (2003, Nathaniel Kahn) [r]
213. Zero Dark Thirty (2012, Kathryn Bigelow) [-]
214. Driving Miss Daisy (1989, Bruce Beresford) [NO]
215. Dances with Wolves (1990, Kevin Costner) [NO]
216. Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? (1966, Mike Nichols) [r]
217. The Silence of the Lambs (1991, Jonathan Demme) [A+]
218. Unforgiven (1992, Clint Eastwood) [-]
219. Tootsie (1982, Sydney Pollack) [c]
220. A Clockwork Orange (1971, Stanley Kubrick) [hr]
221. Forrest Gump (1994, Robert Zemeckis) [NO]
222. Braveheart (1995, Mel Gibson) [NO]
223. The English Patient (1996, Anthony Minghella) [r]
224. Titanic (1997, James Cameron) [hr]
225. The Deep Blue Sea (2011, Terence Davies) [r]
226. [not yet publicly posted]
227. Saving Private Ryan (1998, Steven Spielberg) [c]
228. The Shawshank Redemption (1994, Frank Darabont) [r]
229. Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid (1969, George Roy Hill) [-]
230. Shakespeare in Love (1998, John Madden) [r]
231. Hanna (2011, Joe Wright) [hr]
232. American Beauty (1999, Sam Mendes) [hr]
233. Gladiator (2000, Ridley Scott) [NO]
234. A Beautiful Mind (2001, Ron Howard) [-]
235. Take Shelter (2011, Jeff Nichols) [-]
236. All the President’s Men (1976, Alan J. Pakula) [A+]
237. Modern Times (1936, Charles Chaplin) [hr]
238. The Wild Bunch (1969, Sam Peckinpah) [-]
239. Spartacus (1960, Stanley Kubrick) [hr]
240. Jonestown: The Life and Death of Peoples Temple (2006, Stanley Nelson) [hr]
241. Chicago (2002, Rob Marshall) [r]
242. Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King (2003, Peter Jackson) [c]
243. Meet the Feebles (1989, Peter Jackson) [r]
244. Million Dollar Baby (2004, Clint Eastwood) [c]
245. Sunrise (1927, F.W. Murnau) [A+]
246. [not yet publicly posted]
247. Bottle Rocket (1996, Wes Anderson) [hr]
248. Easy Rider (1969, Dennis Hopper) [c]
249. Beginners (2010, Mike Mills) [r]
250. A Night at the Opera (1935, Sam Wood) [hr]
251. 12 Angry Men (1957, Sidney Lumet) [hr]
252. Crash (2004, Paul Haggis) [NO]
253. Bringing Up Baby (1938, Howard Hawks) [A+]
254. Holy Motors (2012, Leos Carax) [-]
255. The Departed (2006, Martin Scorsese) [r]
256. No Country for Old Men (2007, Joel & Ethan Coen) [hr]
257. The Artist (2011, Michel Hazanavicius) [c]
258. The Sixth Sense (1999, M. Night Shyamalan) [hr]
259. Swing Time (1936, George Stevens) [hr]
260. 7th Heaven (1927, Frank Borzage) [hr]
261. Two Arabian Knights (1927, Lewis Milestone) [r]
262. Shoot the Piano Player (1960, Francois Truffaut) [A+]
263. The Snapper (1993, Stephen Frears) [hr]
264. Skippy (1931, Norman Taurog) [-]
265. Sophie’s Choice (1982, Alan J. Pakula) [r]
266. Goodfellas (1990, Martin Scorsese) [r]
267. Pulp Fiction (1994, Quentin Tarantino) [NO]
268. Contagion (2011, Steven Soderbergh) [r]
269. Bad Girl (1931, Frank Borzage) [A+]
270. The Informer (1935, John Ford) [r]
271. Django Unchained (2012, Quentin Tarantino) [-]
272. The Last Picture Show (1971, Peter Bogdanovich) [A+]
273. Do the Right Thing (1989, Spike Lee) [hr]
274. Blade Runner (1982, Ridley Scott) [c]
275. Yankee Doodle Dandy (1942, Michael Curtiz) [-]
276. Toy Story (1995, John Lasseter)
277. Mr. Deeds Goes to Town (1936, Frank Capra) [r]
278. The Awful Truth (1937, Leo McCarey) [hr]
279. A Letter to Three Wives (1949, Joseph L. Mankiewicz) [-]
280. Doctor Zhivago (1965, David Lean) [-]
281. Scoop (2006, Woody Allen) [hr]
282. The Birth of a Nation (1915, D.W. Griffith) [c]
283. Frances Ha (2012, Noah Baumbach) [hr]
284. Stories We Tell (2012, Sarah Polley) [r]
285. A Place in the Sun (1951, George Stevens) [hr]
286. The Quiet Man (1952, John Ford) [-]
287. The Third Man (1949, Carol Reed) [A+]
288. Bagdad Cafe (1987, Percy Adlon) [hr]
289. Giant (1956, George Stevens) [c]
290. Reds (1981, Warren Beatty) [c]
291. Submarine (2010, Richard Ayoade) [r]
292. Killer Joe (2011, William Friedkin) [NO]
293. Wild Man Blues (1997, Barbara Kopple) [hr]
294. Fantasia (1940, various directors) [A+]
295. Before Midnight (2013, Richard Linklater) [r]
296. Born on the Fourth of July (1989, Oliver Stone) [-]
297. Traffic (2000, Steven Soderbergh) [c]
298. The Pianist (2002, Roman Polanski) [hr]
299. Brokeback Mountain (2005, Ang Lee) [hr]
300. [post #300 / title sequences list etc.]
301. Life of Pi (2012, Ang Lee) [-]
302. Rebel Without a Cause (1955, Nicholas Ray) [A+]
303. Stagecoach (1939, John Ford) [hr]
304. Alps (2011, Yorgos Lanthimos) [r]
305. Magic Mike (2012, Steven Soderbergh) [-]
306. Close Encounters of the Third Kind (1977, Steven Spielberg) [A+]
307. Underworld (1929, Josef von Sternberg) [hr]
308. [BEST PICTURE OSCAR WINNERS summary]
309. The Thief and the Cobbler (1993, Richard Williams) [r]
310. The Manchurian Candidate (1962, John Frankenheimer) [A+]
311. Jackie Brown (1997, Quentin Tarantino) [hr]
312. The Dawn Patrol (1930, Howard Hawks) [hr]
313. The Big House (1930, George W. Hill) [hr]
314. Wuthering Heights (1939, William Wyler) [r]
315. The Champ (1931, King Vidor) [r]
316. House of Pleasures (2011, Bertrand Bonello) [hr]
317. Fargo (1996, Joel Coen) [hr]
318. The Jazz Singer (1927, Alan Crosland) [r]
319. One Way Passage (1932, Tay Garnett) [hr]
320. Little Women (1933, George Cukor) [-]
321. The Conjuring (2013, James Wan) [c]
322. Manhattan Melodrama (1934, W.S. Van Dyke) [hr]
323. The Scoundrel (1935, Ben Hecht & Charles MacArthur) [hr]
324. Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner (1967, Stanley Kramer) [c]
325. [not yet publicly posted]
326. Monsters University (2013, Dan Scanlon) [hr]
327. [not yet publicly posted]
328. [not yet publicly posted]
329. [not yet publicly posted]
330. Much Ado About Nothing (2012, Joss Whedon) [hr]
331. The Good, the Bad and the Ugly (1966, Sergio Leone) [hr]
332. [forthcoming: The Crying Game]
333. The Dark Knight (2008, Christopher Nolan) [-]
334. Fight Club (1999, David Fincher) [hr]
335. The Empire Strikes Back (1980, Irvin Kershner) [-]
336. The Story of Louis Pasteur (1936, William Dieterle) [-]
337. A Star Is Born (1937, William A. Wellman) [r]
338. Pygmalion (1938, Anthony Asquith & Leslie Howard) [NO]
339. Blue Jasmine (2013, Woody Allen) [hr]
340. Seven Samurai (1954, Akira Kurosawa) [hr]
341. The Matrix (1999, Andy & Lana Wachowski) [-]
342. Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers (2002, Peter Jackson) [c]
343. City of God (2002, Fernando Meirelles) [A+]
344. Arise, My Love (1940, Mitchell Leisen) [r]
345. Amour (2012, Michael Haneke) [-]
346. The World’s End (2013, Edgar Wright) [r]
347. The Great McGinty (1940, Preston Sturges) [r]
348. Here Comes Mr. Jordan (1941, Alexander Hall) [r]
349. Blackfish (2013, Gabriela Cowperthwaite) [r]
350. Se7en (1995, David Fincher) [A+]
351. Once Upon a Time in the West (1968, Sergio Leone) [hr]
352. The Usual Suspects (1995, Bryan Singer) [hr]
353. 49th Parallel (1941, Michael Powell) [hr]
354. The Bling Ring (2013, Sofia Coppola) [hr]
355. Woman of the Year (1942, George Stevens) [r]
356. Cave of Forgotten Dreams (2010, Werner Herzog) [-]
357. Leon (1994, Luc Besson) [c]
358. American History X (1998, Tony Kaye) [NO]
359. [forthcoming: Terminator 2]
360. The Spectacular Now (2013, James Ponsoldt) [hr]
361. Gravity (2013, Alfonso Cuaron) [hr]
362. [not yet publicly posted]
363. [forthcoming: Memento]
364. Princess O’Rourke (1943, Norman Krasna) [hr]
365. Rush (2013, Ron Howard) [r]
366. Songcatcher (2000, Maggie Greenwald) [NO]
367. Captain Phillips (2013, Paul Greengrass) [hr]
368. Marie-Louise (1944, Leopold Lindtberg) [r]
369. The House on 92nd Street (1945, Henry Hathaway) [hr]
370. [not yet publicly posted]
371. [forthcoming: Alien]
372. [forthcoming: Spirited Away]
373. Life Is Beautiful (1997, Roberto Benigni) [c]
374. [forthcoming: The Shining]
375. The Seventh Veil (1945, Compton Bennett) [r]
376. Enough Said (2013, Nicole Holofcener) [r]
377. [BEST DIRECTOR OSCAR WINNERS summary]
378. Vacation from Marriage (1945, Alexander Korda) [hr]
379. Miracle on 34th Street (1947, George Seaton) [r]
380. [forthcoming: The Bachelor and the Bobby-Soxer]
381. [forthcoming: M]
382. Tabu (2012, Miguel Gomes) [r]
383. [forthcoming: The Search]
384. Heavenly Creatures (1994, Peter Jackson) [hr]
385. 12 Years a Slave (2013, Steve McQueen) [r]
386. Dementia (1955, John Parker) [hr]
387. [forthcoming: Paths of Glory]
388. [forthcoming: Battleground]
389. All Is Lost (2013, J.C. Chandor) [hr]
390. [forthcoming: The Dark Knight Rises]
391. Dallas Buyers Club (2013, Jean-Marc Vallee) [r]
392. [forthcoming: Aliens]
393. [not yet publicly posted]
394. [forthcoming: The Green Mile]
395. [forthcoming: Panic in the Streets]
396. [forthcoming: Seven Days to Noon]
397. Philomena (2013, Stephen Frears)
398. [forthcoming: WALL-E]
399. [forthcoming: The Lives of Others]