Favorite Movies watched on video in 2011

1. Three by Raoul Ruiz: City of Pirates (1984), Manuel on the Island of Wonders (1985), and That Day (2003)
City of Pirates has been the one to beat since I watched it this summer. I can’t say Manuel beats it exactly, but they are highly complimentary (both concern islands, pirates, children with identity issues, etc). The other (and of course Mysteries of Lisbon) is happy proof that Ruiz never stopped making brilliant work to the end of his life. I look forward to catching up with all the rest.

2. Three by Bergman: Smiles of a Summer Night (1955), The Magician (1958) and The Virgin Spring (1960)
I didn’t even think I liked Bergman very much until I saw Monika at Emory early this year. Then I watched each of these expecting to be let down, but I never was. So I’m grudgingly redefining myself as a huge Bergman fan.

3. Four by Josef von Sternberg: Underworld (1927), The Last Command (1928), Docks of New York (1928) and Dishonored (1931)

4. Russian Silents: Battleship Potemkin (Eisenstein), By the Law (Kuleshov), Mother (Pudovkin) and Arsenal (Dovzhenko)

5. A Tale of the Wind (1988, Ivens & Loridan)
6. The Best Years of Our Lives (1946, William Wyler)

7. Victor Sjostrom: The Phantom Carriage (1921) and He Who Gets Slapped (1924)

8. The Wind Will Carry Us (1999, Abbas Kiarostami)

9. Renoir in the 1930’s: La Chienne, Night at the Crossroads, Boudu Saved From Drowning and Toni
I didn’t get to Grand Illusion in time.

10. Kaneto Shindo horrors: Onibaba (1964) and Kuroneko (1968)

I don’t care if it’s cheating to put 25 titles in my top-10.

11. Finis Terrae (1929, Jean Epstein)
12. Nostalghia (1983, Andrei Tarkovsky)
13. I Was a Male War Bride (1949, Howard Hawks)

14. Two by Alain Resnais: Love Unto Death (1984) and Melo (1986)
Too bad about I Want To Go Home.

15. Century of the Self (2002, Adam Curtis)
16. For All Mankind (1989, Al Reinert)
Two extremely different documentaries.

17. Bigger Than Life (1956, Nicholas Ray)
18. The Apartment (1960, Billy Wilder)
19. La Pointe-courte (1956, Agnes Varda)
20. Withnail & I (1986, Bruce Robinson)

21. Make Way For Tomorrow (1937, Leo McCarey)
22. Center Stage (1991, Stanley Kwan)
23. Powell & Pressburger: A Canterbury Tale and Gone to Earth
24. Hail the Conquering Hero (1944, Preston Sturges)
25. Gothic (1986, Ken Russell)
26. The Crowd (1928, King Vidor)

Runners-up:
My Life to Live (1962, Jean-Luc Godard)
The Last Bolshevik (1992, Chris Marker)
L’Assassinat du Père Noël (1941, Christian-Jaque)
The Marquise of O (1976, Eric Rohmer)
Even Dwarfs Started Small (1970, Werner Herzog)
The Last Mistress (2007, Catherine Breillat)

Finally, because his films don’t like to mingle with the others,
Jacques Rivette of the year: L’Amour Fou (1969)

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