- 2001 - My Top Ten, Bottom Ten and Comments


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My Top Ten For 2001

1. Audition. Grisly psychosexual allegory is unquestionably the movie of the year. Director Takeshi Miike redeems himself after the lame Dead or Alive series. I predict this, along with Fight Club, are going to be the most talked about films several years from now. The future of cinema?

2. Ghost World. Terry Zwigoff knows awkwardness. Daniel Clowes knows awkward youth. Steve Buscemi is a master of the awkward. Deeply depressing, but never a false moment.

3. Mulholland Drive. Lynch is a personal favorite, and Mulholland does not disappoint. Takes a few missteps on the road to the end (why, oh why are those stupid little people walking around?), but it wouldn't get out of my head days after seeing it.

4. Under the Sand. I hate the word "perfect," but that pretty much sums up the last shot. Ozon deserves more hype.

5. Monsters, Inc. Billy Crystal and John Goodman are perfect together ... as a digital Laurel & Hardy. Forget the kids: adults love this even more.

6. In the Mood for Love. That something this ethereal and emotionally taut was constructed by the same maker of Fallen Angels shows some serious range. Not his best film, but still beautiful.

7. The Man Who Wasn't There. Effective postmodern film noir that made me think of Double Indemnity. What performances! What a screenplay!

8. Wet Hot American Summer. Reminds me of the old ZAZ and Monty Python works. Critics missed the point, spilling themselves over Shrek instead.

9. Va Savoir. Rivette's best film since ... since ... since his last one. Composed, urbane.

10. Battle Royale. Takeshi Kitano takes his students to an island where they play a real-life version of Doom and are forced to slaughter each other. Depersonalized and fascist, it will - like it or not - give you lots to talk about. Import your copy on VCD or DVD.

Let us not forget: A.I. Artificial Intelligence (Spielberg), Waking Life (Linklater), I'm Going Home (De Oliveira), Memento (Nolan), Moulin Rouge (Luhrmann), Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring (Jackson), L.I.E. (Cuesta)

The Bottom O' The Barrel
In no real order.

1. Time and Tide. Ummm ... Cahiers? Hi. It's called 'you've been duped.' No, really. If you really want to appreciate Mr. Hark, go see Zu again. Don't mention it.

2. Shrek. We are all ugly inside.

3. The Anniversary Party. When my friends and I pretend to fall asleep in the theater to amuse ourselves - and this is a formidable movie trio that can sit through most anything - you have screwed up.

4. American Pie 2. Painfully bad rehash of the original. Super glue? Who laughed at that? I want names.

5. Hannibal. A lot of people told me the book was great (I never bothered reading it), so a cinematic adaptation was naturally in order, but did Mamet and Ridley Scott have to completely destroy my memories of Silence? Note to Mr. Scott: stick to the future.

6. A Beautiful Mind. Ignore the hallucinations.

7. The Score. Embarassingly dull. Brando in a sauna = priceless.

8. The Mexican. Look how compassionate gay hitmen can be! A friend of mine stopped watching after ten minutes. Wise decision.

9. Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within. Why won't people stop with this video game-to-movie shit? Really? After playing FFX for over 40 hours, I'm starting to question the movies' power to absorb.

10. Brother. Accusations of racism aren't all that's wrong with it - even more offensive is the pacing and lack of purpose.

11. Bully. If you're ill-tempered and like kinky sex, you, too, could be killed by your friends. Fatalize!

12. Pootie Tang. No excuses can save this. It's an hour too long.

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