The Movie Year/Decade in Review, 2019

Happy New Movie Year!

I’ve been doing this all decade (Rubber was the 3000th post!), and previous lists are here, so I don’t need to make a best-of-decade list. Of course I’m paying attention to other people’s year-end and decade-end lists, but not finding a ton of movies I missed that weren’t already on my radar, since I paid close (maybe too close) attention all year to what played where.


I did make this letterboxd list of all the must-see movies released in 2019.
As of now, I’ve watched about a third of them.

Tried to make a companion list of must-see movies that played 2019 fests or NYC and still haven’t been released here, but it’s hard to track down reliable reviews of all the fest movies, or to know what’s coming and what’s going to die on streaming. But here are a few, a top-ten of 2020 hopefuls:

What You Gonna Do When the World’s on Fire?
First Cow
Deerskin
Bacurau
Portrait of a Lady on Fire
Vitalina Varela
Fourteen
Zombi Child
Joan of Arc
Varda by Agnès


Besides the above, I’m currently looking forward to NOT catching up with the consensus faves, but trying some new directions. When I constrain myself to some project or another, like the movies from Rotterdam I watched in January, I end up seeing more unusual and exciting things than usual. My “favorite older movies” list this year was SHOCKtober-heavy because that’s the only time I focused on pre-2010’s movies. I could stand to do that more often… while trying in vain to keep up with the new films of 2020, naturally. There’s only so much time in the year for moviewatching, and I don’t want to be someone who didn’t make time for The Irishman or Parasite or Knives Out because I’d talked myself into only watching more obscure stuff. So I’ve come up with a bunch of possible viewing projects for next year, but I already embarrass myself enough with this blog, so let’s not list them.

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