Movies Of The Year: 2008 (Part One)

No, I still haven’t seen any of the big ones from this year (though I hope to watch Australia finally tonight. Instead, here’s the list of the best movies I saw for the first time in 2008. I don’t know how it measures up to previous years (see the 2006 and 2007 lists), but there were a lot of great films regardless. Here’s the Top 70:


1. I Am Cuba
2. Sans soleil
3. Johnny Guitar
4. Early Summer
5. The Gang’s All here
6. The Passenger
7. Lola
8. Tabu: A Story Of The South Seas
9. Park Row
10. Come Drink With Me
11. Unfaithfully Yours
12. Don’t Look Now
13. Shanghai Express
14. The Color Of Pomegranates
15. Tokyo Chorus
16. The Atomic Cafe
17. Howl’s Moving Castle
18. Unbreakable
19. Flight Of The Red Balloon
20. Texas Chain-Saw Massacre
21. Popeye
22. The Wind Will Carry Us
23. Passion
24. A Story Of Floating Weeds
25. Wee Willie Winkie


26. Blissfully Yours
27. Earth
28. The End Of Summer
29. Thieves’ Highway
30. Jason And The Argonauts
31. Advise And Consent
32. I Was Born But . . .
33. Muhammed Ali: The Greatest
34. Passing Fancy
35. Our Daily Bread
36. My Blueberry Nights
37. Yang Kwei-fei
38. Stolen Kisses
39. A Man Escaped
40. All Aboout Lily Chou-Chou
41. The Thing
42. A Letter To Three Wives
43. Heroes Of The East
44. Fantastic Planet
45. Wonderful Town
46. Eagle Shooting Heroes
47. The Naked Prey
48. Bunny Lake Is Missing
49. Russian Ark
50. Signs


51. Steamboat Round The bend
52. Wings
53. Haxan
54. Crossfire
55. Last Hurrah For Chivalry
56. Nightfall
57. Syndromes And A Century
58. The Iron Horse
59. Purple Rain
60. Bob le flambeur
61. The Village
62. Mysterious Island
63. Boarding Gate
64. The Saddest Music In The World
65. The Threepenny Opera
66. Rififi
67. Slap Shot
68. Legendary Weapons Of China
69. Jezebel
70. Encounters At The End Of The World

Movie Roundup: Snowed In Edition


I’ve been trapped in the house with a shockingly small amount of Diet Coke for most of the last week. But I’ll be working for most of the rest of the year, regardless of the weather. Ideally, this would be the time when I’d be posting my best of 2008 list. Unfortunately, I’ve managed to see hardly any of the big end of the year movies (Milk, Slumdog Millionaire, Australia, Marley & Me, etc), so a list at this point would be pretty pointless. Look for that sometime around Oscar season.

In the meantime, here’s what I’ve seen over the last several weeks, and where they rank on their respective Movies Of The Year lists.

Muhammed Ali, The Greatest: 6, 1969
The Haunting: 14, 1963
Mystery Of The Wax Museum: 12, 1933
Ashes Of Time Redux: 2008
Bluebeard’s Eighth Wife: 7, 1938
Zack And Miri Make A Porno: 2008
The Small Back Room: 10, 1949
Russian Ark: 9, 2002
The Thing: 11, 1982
Quantum Of Solace: 2008
Fight Back To School: 25, 1991
Encounters At the End Of the World: 13, 2007
Popeye: 8, 1980
Slap Shot: 6, 1977
Baby Mama: 2008
Unbreakable: 9, 2000
Shipmates Forever: 13, 1935
Signs: 10, 2002
The Village: 14, 2004
Lady In the Water: 20, 2006
Man On Wire: 2008
Gonzo: The Life And Work Of Dr. Hunter S. Thompson: 2008
The TV Set: 41, 2006
The Ten: 34, 2007
Boarding Gate: 12, 2007
The Atomic Cafe: 5, 1982
Platinum Blonde: 16, 1931

Movies Of The 80s


I’ve spent the last week complaining about snow-related inconveniences while listening to a whole lot of Hilary Hahn. So here’s a list of my Top 50 films of the 1980s.

1. Do The Right Thing
2. Ran
3. Sans soleil
4. Stranger Than Paradise
5. The Empire Strikes Back
6. Fitzcarraldo
7. The Raiders Of The Lost Ark
8. The Princess Bride
9. Amadeus
10. Ghostbusters
11. Dangerous Liaisons
12. Hannah And Her Sisters
13. The Shining
14. The Right Stuff
15. The Purple Rose Of Cairo
16. Henry V
17. Bull Durham
18. Zelig
19. Pennies From Heaven
20. The Road Warrior
21. Broadcast News
22. The Mission
23. This Is Spinal Tap
24. Passion
25. Airplane!


26. Platoon
27. The Last Temptation Of Christ
28. Out Of Africa
29. Die Hard
30. Empire Of The Sun
31. Das Boot
32. The Big Red One
33. The Verdict
34. Heaven’s Gate
35. Aliens
36. Full Metal Jacket
37. Crimes And Misdemeanors
38. Blade Runner
39. The Killer
40. Police Story
41. Once Upon A Time In America
42. Raising Arizona
43. Glory
44. Salvador
45. Eight Men Out
46. Reds
47. Caddyshack
48. Heathers
49. When Harry Met Sally. . .
50. ET: The Extra-Terrestrial

Music Of The Year: 2008


I don’t listen to a lot of music, certainly not relative to how many movies I watch. But I’ve bought thirteen albums from 2008, and listened to eleven of them enough to give them a ranking (apologies to Stephen Malkmus & The Jicks and David Byrne & Brian Eno).

1. Hilary Hahn – Schoenberg & Sibelius: Violin Concertos
2. The Magnetic Fields – Distortion
3. Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds – Dig, Lazarus, Dig!!!
4. Thomas Newman – WALL-E Soundtrack
5. Bob Dylan – Bootleg Series 8: Tell Tale Signs
6. Annette Hanshaw – Sita Sings The Blues Soundtrack
7. Melody Gardot – Worrisome Heart
8. Guns N’ Roses – Chinese Democracy
9. Neil Diamond – Home Before Dark
10. Noah And The Whale – Peaceful, The World Lays Me Down
11. Weezer – The Red Album

Movies Of The 90s


The Top 50 Films from 1990-1999:

1. Chungking Express
2. The Big Lebowski
3. Miller’s Crossing
4. Unforgiven
5. Boogie Nights
6. Trainspotting
7. Dead Man
8. Three Colors: Blue
9. LA Story
10. Rushmore
11. The Thin Red Line
12. Eyes Wide Shut
13. Slacker
14. Pulp Fiction
15. The Last Of The Mohicans
16. The Double Life Of Veronique
17. Hard-Boiled
18. Dazed And Confused
19. Fallen Angels
20. Satantango
21. Goodfellas
22. Days Of Being Wild
23. The English Patient
24. Magnolia
25. Big Night


26. Reservoir Dogs
27. Barton Fink
28. True Romance
29. Glengarry Glen Ross
30. Searching For Bobby Fischer
31. Taste Of Cherry
32. Three Colors: Red
33. Kicking And Screaming
34. Six Degrees Of Separation
35. The Matrix
36. Les amants du Pont-Neuf
37. Lost Highway
38. The Wind Will Carry Us
39. Bottle Rocket
40. Seven
41. Drunken Master II
42. Pi
43. Happy Together
44. Heat
45. Fight Club
46. Goodbye South, Goodbye
47. Dreams
48. Starship Troopers
49. Metropolitan
50. April Story