Tuesday, January 01, 2008


Happy New Year!

...now here are the 10 best films of last year

10. Curse of the Golden Flower

Ornately made and built of a calcium strong skeleton that gives its battle sequences power. Reason # 18 that Peter Jackson's Lord of the Rings video game trilogy will age poorly.

9. Waitress

Adrienne Shelley passed away before I had a chance to admire her. Watching Waitress, I mourned the fact that such a crisp comic screenwriter would create no more, but mostly that such a sweetheart - evident through her directing - is gone.

8. Pride

A guilt-free, cynicism-free, racially-sensitive, gender-accepting, team-building, socially-aware, underdog film that Hollywood doesn't want to make anymore (and that Spike Lee is still figuring out how to...).

7. Superbad

The funniest 30-minute run of the year starts off the honest boy-poaching of Superbad. It's great that Rogan & Goldberg's script gives us the yin & yang of male teen sexuality: The outwardly horny porn fiend, and the inwardly horny porn fiend.

6. Lars and the Real Girl

Made by a writer of Six Feet Under and the director of Mr. Woodcock, Lars and the Real Girl finds that happy medium between small-town comedy and small-town drama. A few big city critics scoffed at the portrayal of country-bumpkin acceptance and elbowed it away as some kind of phantom, mythical characteristic. These soft-headed boobs need to come down from their tower more.

5. I Don't Want To Sleep Alone

So much happens with so little action in a Tsai Ming-Liang movie
. Because his camera never moves, the still-life imagery gives your eyes time to explore, thus exciting your interpretations. The film is also a brain-teaser: the same actor plays a comatose patient and a homeless, wandering gigolo. It's like Belle De Jour with a Taiwanese twist.

4. Hot Fuzz

If Superbad contained 2007's funnest 30 minutes to start a movie, then Hot Fuzz owned the last 30. Hot Fuzz is neither parody or homage... it's movie love.

3. Linda Linda Linda

The ghost of Robert Altman found it's way into the heart of Japanese director Nobuhiro Yamashita and the best teen film of the year was made. Eat your heart out, Juno.

2. Inland Empire

Like Mulholland Drive to the third power, David Lynch's Inland Empire is too mesmerizing, confounding, tweaking, and long to swallow down and digest. But you can feel that its great, and when you watch it again, the masterstrokes appear vividly.

1. The Darjeeling Limited

The fact that The Bourne Ultimatum received better reviews than The Darjeeling Limited is proof that most critics don't get it anymore. Wes Anderson makes films in the tradition that his fore bearers laid out for him. After Anderson perfects his own flash for 90 minutes, he lets the credits roll over a shot borrowed from Renoir's Le Bete Humaine. That's just the type of humble visionary he is.




1. Jack Ketchum's The Girl Next Door (Gregory Wilson)
2. Joshua (George Ratliff)
3. Hostel II (Eli Roth)
4. Before the Devil Knows Your Dead (Sidney Lumet)
5. 51 Birch Street (Doug Block)
6. Shooter (Antoine Fuqua)
7. The Bourne Ultimatum (Paul Greengrass)
8. Mr. Brooks (Bruce Evans)
9. A Mighty Heart (Michael Winterbottom)
10. Sunshine (Danny Boyle)


Marilyn said...

Keep up the good work. Have a great 2008! Cheers :-)

debbie said...

Does David Lynch name all his movies off of places in California?

Wes Anderson makes your top spot, two years in a row. Maybe you are his biggest fan.

I finally bought M.I.A. and I love it.
Great for work-outs.

Will said...

Really enjoying reading your blog. Keep writing!

I hadn't realized Tsai had a new film out, so thanks for the heads-up. Also, I'm wondering about Bourne Ultimatum on your worst list. Thoughts? Did you review this earlier on your blog?

All the best —

Fox said...

Thanks to everyone for the kind words!

Will, here is the link to my "The Bourne Ultimatum" post: http://fox-tractorfacts.blogspot.com/2007/12/bourne-ultimatum.html

Oh, and Debbie .... "The Life Aquatic" was THREE years ago, but you're absolutely right that it was my # 1 then too! :)

Victor said...

I was just going through some of your old entries. I don't know if you're interested, but if you want to see more Simon Pegg / Edgar Wright stuff, you should see "Spaced." It's an old British tv series they did, and it's full of movie and tv homages. It shows you how they ended doing stuff like "Hot Fuzz" and "Shaun of the Dead" later on.