Top 10s

*IMDB World Premiere Dates*
Some of these lists are thin or incomplete

“Come Along With Me”

2018

  1. Come Along With Me”- Adventure Time (Adam Muto)
  2. A Star is Born (Bradley Cooper)
  3. Support the Girls (Andrew Haigh)
  4. The Other Side of the Wind (Orson Welles)
  5. Liz and the Blue Bird (Naoko Yamada)
  6. Devilman Crybaby (Masaaki Yuasa)
  7. Beychella (Beyonce’)
  8. The Mule (Clint Eastwood)
  9. The Tale (Jennifer Fox)
  10. Leave No Trace (Debra Granik)
“Twin Peaks”

2017

  1. Twin Peaks (David Lynch)
  2. Milla (Valerie Massadian)
  3. Ladybird (Greta Gerwig)
  4. Strangely Ordinary, This Devotion (Dani Leventhal and Sheliah Wilson)
  5. Good Time (Josh and Benny Safdie)
  6. Personal Shopper (Olivier Assayas)
  7. In This Corner of the World (Sunao Katabuchi)
  8. Resident Evil: The Final Chapter (Paul W.S. Anderson)
  9. Phantom Thread (Paul Thomas Anderson)
  10. Strong Island (Yance Ford)
“Cameraperson”

2016

  1. Cameraperson (Kirsten Johnson)
  2. Certain Women (Kelly Reichardt)
  3. Elle (Paul Verhoeven)
  4. Lemonade (Beyonce)
  5.  Moonlight (Barry Jenkins)
  6. O.J. Made in America (Ezra Edelman)
  7. Silence (Martin Scorsese)
  8. The Edge of Seventeen (Kelly Femon Craig)
  9. Sully (Clint Eastwood)
  10. Our Little Sister (Hirokazu Koreeda)
“No Home Movie”

2015

  1. No Home Movie (Chantal Akerman)
  2. Carol (Todd Haynes)
  3. Mad Max: Fury Road (George Miller)
  4. Magic Mike XXL (Gregory Jacobs)
  5. Mistress America (Noah Baumbach & Greta Gerwig)
  6. Blackhat (Michael Mann)
  7. 88:88 (Isiah Medina)
  8. Creed (Ryan Coogler)
  9. By the Sea (Angelina Jolie)
  10. In Jackson Heights (Frederick Wiseman)
“The Tale of Princess Kaguya”

2014

  1. The Tale of Princess Kaguya (Isao Takahata)
  2. Gone Girl (David Fincher)
  3. Pompeii (Paul W.S. Anderson)
  4. Inherent Vice (Paul Thomas Anderson)
  5. Don’t Go Breaking My Heart 2 (Johnnie To)
  6. Goodbye to Language 3D (Jean-Luc Godard)
  7. Listen Up Philip (Alex Ross Perry)
  8. Heaven Knows What (Ben Safdie and Joshua Safdie)
  9. As the Gods Will (Takashi Miike)
  10. Lucy (Luc Besson)
“Under the Skin”

2013

  1. Under the Skin (Jonathan Glazer)
  2. Top of the Lake (Jane Campion)
  3. The Immigrant (James Gray)
  4. Bastards (Claire Denis)
  5. Blind Detective (Johnnie To)
  6. Drug War (Johnnie To)
  7. White Reindeer (Zach Clark)
  8. Inside Llewyn Davis (Coen Bros.)
  9. The Wind Rises (Hayao Miyazaki)
  10. The World’s End (Edgar Wright)
“Frances Ha”

2012

  1. Frances Ha (Noah Baumbach and Greta Gerwig)
  2. Romancing in Thin Air (Johnnie To)
  3. Spring Breakers (Harmony Korine)
  4. Wolf Children (Mamoru Hosada)
  5. Cosmopolis (David Cronenberg)
  6. The Wolf of Wall Street (Martin Scorsese)
  7. Resident Evil: Retribution (Paul W.S. Anderson)
  8. The Unspeakable Act (Dan Sallitt)
  9. Ace Attorney (Takashi Miike)
  10. The Lords of Salem (Rob Zombie)
“Margaret”

2011

  1.  Margaret (Kenneth Lonergan)
  2. The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (David Fincher)
  3. K-On! The Movie (Naoko Yamada)
  4. Tomboy (Celine Sciamma)
  5. The Skin I Live In (Pedro Almodovar)
  6. Don’t Go Breaking My Heart (Johnnie To)
  7. A Separation (Asghar Farhadi)
  8. Weekend (Andrew Haigh)
  9. The Deep Blue Sea (Terrence Davies)
  10. The Tree of Life (Terrence Malick)
“Meek’s Cutoff”

2010

  1. Meek’s Cutoff (Kelly Reichardt)
  2. Blue Valentine (Derek Cianfrance)
  3. Shutter Island (Martin Scorsese)
  4. Attenberg (Athina Rachel Tsangari)
  5. Somewhere (Sofia Coppola)
  6. Winter’s Bone (Debra Granik)
  7. Lady Blue Shanghai (David Lynch)
  8. Resident Evil: Afterlife (Paul W.S. Anderson)
  9. Poetry (Lee Chang Dong)
  10. Uncle Boonme Who Can Recall His Past Lives (Joe)
“Halloween 2”

2009

  1. Halloween II: Director’s Cut (Rob Zombie)
  2. Bright Star (Jane Campione
  3. Inglourious Basterds (Quentin Tarantino)
  4. Alle Anderen (Maren Ade)
  5. Adventureland (Greg Mottola)
  6. The House of the Devil (Ti West)
  7. Whip It! (Drew Barrymoore)
  8. Two Lovers (James Gray)
  9. A Perfect Getaway (David Twohy)
  10. Drag Me to Hell (Sam Raimi)
“Rachel Getting Married”

2008

  1. Rachel Getting Married (Jonathan Demme)
  2. Wendy and Lucy (Kelly Reichardt)
  3. Sparrow (Johnnie To)
  4. 35 Rhums (Claire Denis)
  5. Martyrs (Pascal Laugier)
  6. Happy-Go-Lucky (Mike Leigh)
  7. The Headless Woman (Lucrecia Martel)
  8. Speed Racer (Lily and Lana Wachowski)
  9. My Blueberry Nights (Wong Kar-Wai)
  10. The Wrestler (Darren Aronofsky)
“4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days”

2007

  1. 4 Months, 3 Weeks, and 2 Days (Cristian Mungiu)
  2. Waitress (Adrienne Shelly)
  3. Zodiac (David Fincher)
  4. Inside (Julien Maury, Alexandre Bustillo)
  5. Death Proof (Quentin Tarantino)
  6. No Country for Old Men (Joel and Ethan Coen)
  7. I’m Not There (Todd Haynes)
  8. Hot Fuzz (Edgar Wright)
  9. The Last Mistress (Catherine Breillat)
  10. Southland Tales (Richard Kelly)
“Inland Empire”

2006

  1. Inland Empire (David Lynch)
  2. Marie Antoinette (Sofia Coppola)
  3. The Lake House  (Alejandro Agresti)
  4. Syndromes and a Century (Joe)
  5. Triad Election (Johnnie To)
  6. Deja Vu (Tony Scott)
  7. Prince’s Superbowl XLI Halftime Show (Prince)
  8. A Prairie Home Companion (Robert Altman)
  9. Friends with Money (Nicole Holofcener)
  10. Silent Hill (Christophe Gans)
“Linda, Linda, Linda”

2005

  1.  Linda Linda Linda (Nobuhiro Yamashita)
  2. Domino (Tony Scott)
  3. Election (Johnnie To)
  4. The Devil’s Rejects (Rob Zombie)
  5. Three Times (Hsiao-Hsien Hou)
  6. A History of Violence (David Cronenberg)
  7. Cigarette Burns (John Carpenter)
  8. Dave Chappelle’s Block Party (Michel Gondry)
  9. Fever Pitch (The Farrely Brothers)
  10. Brokeback Mountain (Ang Lee)
“Innocence”

2004

  1. Innocence (Lucille Hadzihalilovic)
  2. Before Sunset (Richard Linklater)
  3. Million Dollar Baby (Clint Eastwood)
  4. Mysterious Skin (Gregg Araki)
  5. Notre Musique (Jean-Luc Godard)
  6. Collateral (Michael Mann)
  7. Tomorrow We Move (Chantal Akerman)
  8. Kill Bill Vol. 2 (Quentin Tarantino)
  9. Mindgame (Masaki Yuasa)
  10. Birth (Jonathan Glazer)
“Lost in Translation

2003

  1. Lost in Translation (Sofia Coppola)
  2. The Story of Marie and Julien (Jacques Rivette)
  3. Kill Bill Vol. 1 (Quentin Tarantino)
  4. Running on Karma (Johnnie To)
  5. Dogville (Lars von Trier)
  6. Memories of Murder (Bong Joon-Ho)
  7. Elephant (Gus Van Sant)
  8. In the Cut (Jane Campion)
  9. Los Angeles Plays Itself (Thom Anderson)
  10. PTU (Johnnie To)
“Vendredi Soir”

2002

  1. Vendredi Soir (Claire Denis)
  2. Funny Haha (Andrew Bujalski)
  3. Morvern Callar (Lynne Ramsay)
  4. Rabbits (David Lynch)
  5. Deadly Outlaw: Rekka (Takashi Miike)
  6. Minority Report (Steven Spielberg)
  7. Lilya 4-Ever (Lukas Moodysoon)
  8. Punch Drunk Love (Paul Thomas Anderson)
  9. May (Lucky McKee)
  10. Blue (Hiroshi Ando)
“Mulholland Drive”

2001

  1. Mulholland Dr. (David Lynch)
  2. Fat Girl (Catherine Breillat)
  3. The Happiness of the Katakuris (Takashi Miike)
  4. Take Care of My Cat (Jeong Jae-eun)
  5. Millennium Actress (Satoshi Kon)
  6. Millennium Mambo (Hsiao-hsien Hou)
  7. Spirited Away (Hayao Miyazaki)
  8. Ghost World (Terry Zwigoff)
  9. Trouble Every Day (Claire Denis)
  10. Kandahar (Mohsen Makhmalbaf)
“In the Mood For Love”

2000

  1. In the Mood For Love (Kar-Wai Wong)
  2. Ginger Snaps (John Fawcett)
  3. The Day I Became a Woman (Marzieh Meshkini)
  4. DOA 2: Birds (Takashi Miike)
  5. Yi Yi (Edward Yang)
  6. Love and Basketball (Gina Price-Bythewood)
  7. La Captive (Chantal Akerman)
  8. Needing You (Johnnie To)
  9. Almost Famous (Cameron Crowe)
  10. Suzhou River (Le You)
“Eyes Wide Shut”

1999

  1. Eyes Wide Shut (Stanley Kubrick)
  2. Beau Travail (Claire Denis)
  3. The Straight Story (David Lynch)
  4. Adolescence of Utena (Kunihiko Ikuhara)
  5. Rosetta (The Dardennes)
  6. Audition (Takashi Miike)
  7. The Matrix (Lily and Lana Wachowski)
  8. The Mission (Johnnie To)
  9. Ghost Dog: The Way of the Samurai (Jim Jarmusch)
  10. I’ll Take You There (Adrienne Shelly)
“Fucking Amal”

1998

  1. Histoire(s) du Cinema (Jean-Luc Godard)
  2. Fucking Amal (Lukas Moodysson)
  3. Bride of Chucky (Ronny Yu)
  4. Buffalo ’66 (Vincent Gallo)
  5. The Big Lebowski (Joel and Ethan Coen)
  6. The Last Days of Disco (Whit Stillman)
  7. The Flowers of Shanghai (Hsiao-Hsien Hou)
  8. Sombre (Phillipe Grandieux)
  9. Small Soldiers  (Joe Dante)
  10. Mary Jane’s Not a Virgin Anymore (Sarah Jacobson)
“End of Evangelion”

1997

  1. The End of Evangelion (Hideaki Anno)
  2. Jackie Brown (Quentin Tarantino)
  3. Cure (Kiyoshi Kurosawa)
  4. Perfect Blue (Satoshi Kon)
  5. Starship Troopers (Paul Verhoeven)
  6. Career Girls (Mike Leigh)
  7. Boogie Nights (Paul Thomas Anderson)
  8. Romy and Michelle’s High School Reunion (David Mirkin)
  9. Rainy Dog (Takashi Miike)
  10. All Over Me (Alex Sichel)
“Crash”

1996

  1. Crash (David Cronenberg)
  2. Bound (Lana and Lily Wachowski)
  3. Breaking the Waves (Lars von Trier)
  4. Fargo (Joel and Ethan Coen)
  5. Fudoh: The New Generation (Takashi Miike)
  6. Paradise Lost: The Child Murders at Robin Hood Hills (Joe Berlinger & Bruce Sinofsky)
  7. Nenette et Boni (Claire Denis)
  8. Sudden Manhattan (Adrienne Shelly)
  9. Scream (Wes Craven)
  10. Small Deaths (Lynne Ramsay)
Clueless

1995

  1. Clueless (Amy Heckerling)
  2. The Bridges of Madison County (Clint Eastwood)
  3. Up, Down, Fragile (Jacques Rivette)
  4. Heat (Michael Mann)
  5. [SAFE] (Todd Haynes)
  6. Showgirls (Paul Verhoeven)
  7. Ghost in the Shell (Mamoru Ishii)
  8. Suit Yourself or Shoot Yourself!!! The Heist (Kiyoshi Kurosawa)
  9. Whisper of the Heart (Yoshifumi Kondo)
  10. The Blade (Hark Tsui)
Joan the Maiden

1994

  1. Jeanne la Pucelle (Jacques Rivette)
  2. Little Women (Gillian Armstrong)
  3. Portrait of a Young Girl in Brussels at the End of the 60s (Chantal Akerman)
  4. Hoop Dreams (Steve James)
  5. Chungking Express (Kar-Wai Wong)
  6. In the Mouth of Madness (John Carpenter)
  7. Speed (Jan De Bont)
  8. Legend of Drunken Master (Kar-Lau Leung)
  9. I Can’t Sleep (Claire Denis)
  10. Pulp Fiction (Quentin Tarantino)
Green Snake

1993

  1. Green Snake (Hark Tsui) 
  2. The Piano (Jane Campion)
  3. Blue (Derek Jarman)
  4. D’est (Chantal Akerman)
  5. A Perfect World (Clint Eastwood)
  6. Matinee (Joe Dante)
  7. Je Vous Salue Sarajevo (Jean-Luc Godard)
  8. Blackout” (David Lynch)
  9. The Age of Innocence (Martin Scorsese)
  10. The Wrong Trousers (Nick Park)
Twin Peaks: Fire Walk with Me

1992

  1. Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With Me (David Lynch)
  2. The Long Day Closes (Terrence Davies)
  3. Nitrate Kisses (Barbara Hammer)
  4. Malcolm X (Spike Lee)
  5. Unforgiven (Clint Eastwood)
  6. Death Becomes Her (Robert Zemeckis)
  7. Deep Cover (Bill Duke)
  8. Orlando (Sally Potter)
  9. Hard Boiled (John Woo)
  10. Full Contact (Ringo Lam)
“The Silence of the Lambs”

1991

  1. The Silence of the Lambs (Jonathan Demme)
  2. A Brighter Summer Day (Edward Yang)
  3. The Rapture (Michael Tolkin)
  4. Point Break (Kathryn Bigelow)
  5. Barton Fink (Joel and Ethan Coen)
  6. Flirting (John Duigan)
  7. Dogfight (Nancy Savoca)
  8. My Own Private Idaho (Gus Van Sant)
  9. The Double Life of Veronique (Krzysztof Kieślowski)
  10. Only Yesterday (Isao Takahata)
“Paris is Burning”

1990

  1. Paris is Burning (Jennie Livingston)
  2. Gremlins 2: The New Batch (Joe Dante)
  3. Wild at Heart (David Lynch)
  4. An Angel at my Table (Jane Campion)
  5. Blue Steel (Kathryn Bigelow)
  6. Privilege (Yvonne Rainer)
  7. Goodfellas (Martin Scorsese)
  8. No Fear, No Die (Claire Denis)
  9. Total Recall (Paul Verhoeven)
  10. To Sleep with Anger (Charles Burnett)
“Kiki’s Delivery Service”

1989

  1. Kiki’s Delivery Service (Hayao Miyazaki)
  2. Gang of Four (Jacques Rivette)
  3. Sweetie (Jane Campion)
  4. Do the Right Thing (Spike Lee)
  5. The Killer (John Woo)
  6. A Better Tomorrow III: Love and Death in Saigon (Hark Tsui)
  7. The Unbelievable Truth (Hal Hartley)
  8. Tetsuo: The Iron Man (Shinya Tsukamoto)
  9. For All Mankind (Al Reinert)
  10. Heathers (Michael Lehmann)
“My Neighbor Totoro”

1988

  1. My Neighbor Totoro (Hayao Miyazaki)
  2. School on Fire (Ringo Lam)
  3. Die Hard (John McTiernan)
  4. Grave of the Fireflies (Isao Takahata)
  5. Dead Ringers (David Cronenberg)
  6. Hairspray (John Waters)
  7. Chocolat (Claire Denis)
  8. The Last Temptation of Christ (Martin Scorsese)
  9. Akira (Katsuhio Otomo)
  10. The Accused (Jonathan Kaplan)
“Broadcast News”

1987

  1. Broadcast News (James L. Brooks)
  2. Sign O’ The Times (Prince)
  3. Prince of Darkness (John Carpenter)
  4. Superstar: The Karen Carpenter Story (Todd Haynes)
  5. RoboCop (Paul Verhoeven)
  6. City on Fire (Ringo Lam)
  7. Where Is My Friend’s Home? (Abbas Kiarostami)
  8. Two Friends (Jane Campion)
  9. King Lear (Jean-Luc Godard)
  10. Stagefright: Aquarius (Michele Soavi)
“Big Trouble in Little China”

1986

  1. Big Trouble in Little China (John Carpenter)
  2. The Terrorizers (Edward Yang)
  3. Hannah and Her Sisters (Woody Allen)
  4. The Green Ray (Eric Rohmer)
  5. Working Girls (Lizzie Borden)
  6. The Fly (David Cronenberg)
  7. Peking Opera Blues (Hark Tsui)
  8. The Texas Chain Saw Massacre II (Tobe Hooper)
  9. Manhunter (Michael Mann)
  10. His Motorbike, Her Island (Nobuhiko Obayashi)
“Angel’s Egg”

1985

  1. Angel’s Egg (Mamoru Oshii)
  2. Police Story (Jackie Chan)
  3. Tampopo (Juzo Itami)
  4. Ran (Akira Kurosawa)
  5. Insignificance (Nicolas Roeg)
  6. Taipei Story (Edward Yang)
  7. Day of the Dead (George A. Romero)
  8. Vagabond (Agnes Varda)
  9. Hail Mary (Jean-Luc Godard)
  10. Desperately Seeking Susan (Susan Siedelman)

1984

  1. Starman (John Carpenter) 
  2. Wheels on Meals (Sammo Hung)
  3. Purple Rain (Albert Magnoli)
  4. Stop Making Sense (Jonathan Demme)
  5. Blood Simple (Joel Coen)
  6. Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind (Hayao Miyazaki)
  7. When the Tenth Month Comes (Dang Nhat Minh)
  8. The Terminator (James Cameron)
  9. Paris, Texas (Wim Wenders)
  10. Urusei Yatsura: Beautiful Dreamer (Mamoru Oshii)

1983

  1. Silkwood (Mike Nichols)
  2. One Day Pina Asked (Chantal Akerman)
  3. Videodrome (David Cronenberg)
  4. Christine (John Carpenter)
  5. Terms of Endearment (James L. Brooks)
  6. Sheer Madness (Margarethe Von Trotta)
  7. Three Crowns of the Sailor (Raoul Ruiz)
  8. Born in Flames (Lizzie Borden)
  9. Love Letters (Amy Holden Jones)
  10. Possibly in Michigan (Cecelia Condit)

1982

  1. The Thing (John Carpenter)
  2. Come Back to the Five and Dime, Jimmy Dean, Jimmy Dean (Robert Altman)
  3. Blade Runner (Ridley Scott)
  4. Toute Une Nuit (Chantal Akerman)
  5. The Slumber Party Massacre (Amy Holden Jones)
  6. Fast Times at Ridgemont High (Amy Heckerling)
  7. Starstruck (Gillian Armstrong)
  8. White Dog (Samuel Fuller)
  9. Tenebrae (Dario Argento)
  10. Next of Kin (Tony Williams)

1981

  1. Ms. 45 (Abel Ferrara)
  2. Possession (Andrzej Zulawski)
  3. They All Laughed (Peter Bogdanovich)
  4. Escape From New York (John Carpenter)
  5. The Evil Dead (Sam Raimi)
  6. Le Pont Du Nord (Jacques Rivette)
  7. The Beyond (Lucio Fulci)
  8. Girl Pack (Lisa Baumgardner)
  9. The Great Muppet Caper (Jim Henson)
  10. Merry-Go-Round (Jacques Rivette)

1980

  1. The Shining (Stanley Kubrick)
  2. Breathing” (Kate Bush)
  3.  Bad Timing (Nicolas Roeg)
  4. Melvin & Howard (Jonathan Demme)
  5. The Elephant Man (David Lynch)
  6. Inferno (Dario Argento)
  7. Cannibal Holocaust (Ruggero Deodato)
  8. City of the Livind Dead (Lucio Fulci)
  9. The Fog (John Carpenter)
  10. Nine to Five (Colin Higgins)

1979

  1. Stalker (Andrei Tarkovsky)
  2. Alien (Ridley Scott)
  3. My Brilliant Career (Gillian Armstrong)
  4. The Muppet Movie (Jim Henson)
  5. Asparagus (Suzan Pitt)
  6. Apocalypse Now (Francis Ford Coppola)
  7. The Castle of Cagliostro (Hayao Miyazaki)
  8. Life of Brian (Terry Jones)
  9. Nosferatu: Phantom Der Nacht (Werner Herzog)
  10. The Brood (David Cronenberg)

1978

  1. The Meetings of Anna (Chantal Akerman)
  2. The 36th Chamber of Shaolin (Lau-Kar Leung)
  3. Girlfriends (Claudia Weill)
  4. Coming Home (Hal Ashby)
  5. Halloween (John Carpenter)
  6. Alucarda (Juan Lopez Moctezuma)
  7. Empire of Passion (Nagisa Oshima)
  8. Invasion of the Body Snatchers (Philip Kaufman)
  9. Renaldo & Clara (Bob Dylan)
  10. An Unmarried Woman (Paul Mazursky)

1977

  1. News From Home (Chantal Akerman)
  2. Suspiria (Dario Argento)
  3. Killer of Sheep (Charles Burnett)
  4. Opening Night (John Cassavetes)
  5. Eraserhead (David Lynch)
  6. Annie Hall (Woody Allen)
  7. 3 Women (Robert Altman)
  8. Hausu (Nobuhiko Obayashi)
  9. Martin (George A. Romero)
  10. Star Wars (George Lucas)

1976

  1. Taxi Driver (Martin Scorsese)
  2. Noroit (Jacques Rivette)
  3. Carrie (Brian De Palma)
  4. A Real Young Girl (Catherine Breillat)
  5. Harlan County, U.S.A. (Barbara Kopple)
  6. Duelle (Jacques Rivette)
  7. Assault on Precinct 13 (John Carpenter
  8. Mikey and Nicky (Elaine May)
  9. The Outlaw Josey Wales (Clint Eastwood)
  10. Challenge of the Masters (Kar-Lau Leung)

1975

  1. Jeanne Dielman: 23 Quai du Commerce, 1080 Bruxelles (Chantal Akerman)
  2. Nashville (Robert Altman)
  3. Love and Death (Woody Allen)
  4. Black Moon (Louis Malle)
  5. Picnic at Hanging Rock (Peter Weir)
  6. The Rocky Horror Picture Show (Jim Sharman)
  7. Barry Lyndon (Stanley Kubrick)
  8. The Stepford Wives (Bryan Forbes)
  9. Katie Tippel (Paul Verhoeven)
  10. Graveyard of Honor (Kinji Fukusaku)

1974

  1. Celine and Julie Go Boating (Jacques Rivette)
  2.  Je, Tu, Il, Elle (Chantal Akerman)
  3. The Texas Chain Saw Massacre (Tobe Hooper)
  4. A Woman Under the Influence (John Cassavetes)
  5. Dyketactics (Barbara Hammer)
  6. Female Trouble (John Waters)
  7. Ali: Fear Eats the Soul (Rainer Werner Fassbender)
  8. Edvard Munch (Peter Watkins)
  9. The Parallax View (Alan J. Pakula)
  10. Film About a Woman Who… (Yvonne Rainer)

1973

  1. Female Prisoner Scorpion: Beast Stable (Shunya Ito)
  2. Lady Snowblood (Toshiya Fujita)
  3. F For Fake (Orson Welles)
  4. The Spirit of the Beehive (Victor Erice)
  5. The Yakuza Papers, Vol 2.: Deadly Fight in Hiroshima (Kinji Fukasaku)
  6. Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars (D.A. Pennebaker)
  7. The Exorcist (William Friedkin)
  8. Don’t Look Now (Nicholas Roeg)
  9. Paper Moon (Peter Bogdanovich)
  10. Coffy (Jack Hill)

1972

  1. Hotel Monterey (Chantal Akerman)
  2. The Bitter Tears of Petra Von Kant (Rainer Werner Fassbender)
  3. Pink Flamingos (John Waters)
  4. Female Prisoner Scorpion: Jailhouse 41 (Shunya Ito)
  5. Female Prisoner #701: Scorpion (Shunya Ito)
  6. Across 110th Street (Barry Shear)
  7. Cries and Whispers (Ingmar Bergman)
  8. La Chambre (Chantal Akerman)
  9. The Heartbreak Kid (Elaine May)
  10. What’s Up Doc? (Peter Bogdanovich)

1971

  1. Klute (Alan J. Pakula)
  2. The Last Picture Show (Peter Bogdanovich)
  3. A Touch of Zen (King Hu)
  4. Wake in Fright (Ted Kotcheff)
  5. Dirty Harry (Don Siegel)
  6. McCabe and Mrs. Miller (Robert Altman)
  7. Out 1 (Jacques Rivette)
  8. A New Leaf (Elaine May)
  9. Two Lane Blacktop (Monte Hellman)
  10. The Devils (Ken Russell)

1970

  1. Wanda (Barbara Loden)
  2. Gimme Shelter (Charlotte Zwerin, Albert and David Maysles)
  3. Five Easy Pieces (Bob Rafelson)
  4. Claire’s Knee (Eric Rohmer)
  5. Valerie and Her Week of Wonders (Jaromil Jires)
  6.  The Fruit of the Paradise (Vera Chytilova)
  7. Witches Hammer (Otakar Vavra)
  8. Girly (Freddie Francis)
  9. The Bird with the Crystal Plumage (Dario Argento)
  10. Brewster McCloud (Robert Altman)

1969

  1. They Shoot Horses, Don’t They? (Sydney Pollack)
  2. Funeral Parade of Roses (Toshio Matsumoto)
  3. Diary of a Shinjuku Thief (Nagisa Oshima)
  4. L’amour Fou (Jacques Rivette)
  5. Procile (Pier Paolo Pasolini)
  6. Tenchu! (Hideo Gosha)
  7. Easy Rider (Dennis Hopper)
  8. Medium Cool (Haskell Wexler)
  9. Une Femme Douce (Robert Bresson)
  10. Pit Stop (Jack Hill)

1968

  1. 2001: A Space Odyssey (Stanley Kubrick)
  2. Rosemary’s Baby (Roman Polanski)
  3. Death by Hanging (Nagisa Oshima)
  4. High School (Frederick Wiseman)
  5. The Great Silence (Sergio Corbucci)
  6. Monterey Pop (D.A. Pennebaker)
  7. Night of the Living Dead (George A. Romero)
  8. The Immortal Story (Orson Welles)
  9. Dracula Has Risen from the Grave (Freddie Francis)
  10. The Golden Swallow (Chang Cheh)

1967

  1. Weekend (Jean-Luc Godard)
  2. The Young Girls of Rochefort (Jacques Demy)
  3. Samurai Rebellion (Masaki Kobayashi)
  4. Japanese Summer: Double Suicide (Nagisa Oshima)
  5. Two For the Road (Stanley Donen)
  6. Playtime (Jacques Tati)
  7. Bonnie and Clyde (Arthur Penn)
  8. Titicut Follies (Frederick Wiseman)
  9. A Countess from Hong Kong (Charlie Chaplin)
  10. Don’t Look Back (D.A. Pennebaker)

1966

  1. Daisies (Vera Chytilova)
  2. The Good, The Bad, and the Ugly (Sergio Leone)
  3. Persona (Ingmar Bergman)
  4. Breakaway (Bruce Conner)
  5. Black Girl (Ousmane Sembene)
  6. Tokyo Drifter (Seijun Suzuki)
  7. The Face of Another (Hiroshi Teshigahara)
  8. The Nun (Jacques Rivette)
  9. Come Drink With Me (King Hu)
  10. Django (Sergio Corbucci)

1965

  1.  Le Bonheur (Agnes Varda)
  2. Pierrot Le Fou (Jean-Luc Godard)
  3.  Chimes at Midnight (Orson Welles)
  4. Faster, Pussycat! Kill! Kill! (Russ Meyer)
  5. For a Few Dollars More (Sergio Leone)
  6. A Charlie Brown Christmas (Bill Melendez)
  7. Repulsion (Roman Polanski)
  8. Loves of a Blonde (Milos Forman)
  9. Alphaville (Jean-Luc Godard)
  10. Pleasures of the Flesh (Nagisa Oshima)

1964

  1. Marnie (Alfred Hitchcock)
  2. The Umbrellas of Cherbourg (Jacques Demy)
  3. Charulata (Satyajit Ray)
  4. Kwaidan (Masaki Kobayashi)
  5. The Gospel According to St. Matthew (Pier Paolo Pasolini)
  6. Blood and Black Lace (Mario Bava)
  7. The Masque of the Red Death (Roger Corman)
  8. Onibaba (Kaneto Shindo)
  9. Nadja in Paris (Eric Rohmer)
  10. Mothra vs. Godzilla (Ishiro Honda)

1963

  1. The Birds (Alfred Hitchcock)
  2. The Haunting (Robert Wise)
  3. The House is Black (Forugh Farrokhzad)
  4. Matango (Ishiro Honda)
  5. Charade (Stanley Donen)
  6. Mothlight (Stan Brakhage)
  7. 8 1/2 (Federico Fellini)
  8. Black Sabbath (Mario Bava)
  9. Suzanne’s Career (Eric Rohmer)
  10. I Fidanzati (Ermanno Olmi)

1962

  1. Harakiri (Masaki Kobayashi)
  2. Cleo from 5 to 7 (Agnes Varda)
  3. The Man who Shot Liberty Valance (John Ford)
  4. The Tale of Zatoichi (Kenji Misumi)
  5. Vivre sa Vie (Jean-Luc Godard)
  6. What Ever Happened to Baby Jane? (Robert Aldrich)
  7. Lawrence of Arabia (David Lean)
  8. The Exterminating Angel (Louis Bunuel)
  9. The Fabulous Baron Munchausen (Karel Zamen)
  10. La Jatee (Chris Marker)

1961

  1. Something Wild (Jack Garfein)
  2. Through a Glass Darkly (Ingmar Bergman)
  3. Cash on Demand (Quentin Lawrence)
  4. Paris Belongs to Us (Jacques Rivette)
  5. The Pit and the Pendulum (Roger Corman)
  6. Yojimbo (Akira Kurosawa)
  7. Last Year at Marienbad (Alain Resnais)
  8. The Innocents (Jack Clayton)
  9. Mothra (Ishiro Honda)
  10.  The Children’s Hour (William Wyler)

1960

  1. Eyes without a Face (Georges Franju)
  2. Psycho (Alfred Hitchcock)
  3. L’aaventura (Michelangelo Antonioni)
  4. The Virgin Spring (Ingmar Bergman)
  5. The Testament of Orpheus (Jean Cocteau)
  6. The Apartment (Billy Wilder)
  7. Peeping Tom (Michael Powell)
  8. Black Sunday (Mario Bava)
  9. Breathless (Jean-Luc Godard)
  10. The Brides of Dracula (Terrence Fisher)

1959

  1.  Window Water Baby Moving (Stan Brakhage)
  2. Rio Bravo (Howard Hawks)
  3. Imitation of Life (Douglas Sirk)
  4. Anatomy of a Murder (Otto Preminger)
  5. North By Northwest (Alfred Hitchcock)
  6. Tokaido Yotsuya Kaidan (Nobuo Nakagawa)
  7. Good Morning (Yasujiro Ozu)
  8. Sleeping Beauty (Clyde Geronimi)
  9. The Hound of the Baskervilles (Terrence Fisher)
  10. Hiroshima Mon Amour (Alain Resnais)

1958

  1. Touch of Evil (Orson Welles)
  2. Vertigo (Alfred Hitchcock)
  3. Bell, Book and Candle (Richard Quine)
  4. Murder By Contract (Irving Lerner)
  5. The Ballad of Narayama (Keisuke Kinoshita)
  6. The Magician (Ingmar Bergman)
  7. Horror of Dracula (Terrence Fisher)
  8. The H-Man (Ishiro Honda)
  9. Mon Oncle (Jacques Tati)
  10. The Revenge of Frankenstein (Terence Fisher)

1957

  1. The Cranes are Flying (Mikhail Kalatozov)
  2. Throne of Blood (Akira Kurosawa)
  3. Will Success Spoil Rock Hunter? (Frank Tashlin)
  4. Sweet Smell of Success (Alexander MacKendrick)
  5. Forty Guns (Samuel Fuller)
  6. A King in New York (Charlie Chaplin)
  7. 12 Angry Men (Sidney Lumet)
  8. The Curse of Frankenstein (Terrence Fisher)
  9. Paths of Glory (Stanley Kubrick)
  10. Night of the Demon (Jacques Tourneur)

1956

  1. Written on the Wind (Douglas Sirk)
  2. The Searchers (John Ford)
  3. The Wrong Man (Alfred Hitchcock)
  4. The Red Balloon (Albert Lamorisse)
  5. The Girl Can’t Help It! (Frank Tashlin)
  6. Invasion of the Body Snatchers (Don Siegal)
  7. Bigger Than Life (Nicholas Ray)
  8. Nightfall (Jacques Tourneur)
  9. The Killing (Stanley Kubrick)
  10. Deduce, you Say (Chuck Jones)

1955

  1. The Night of the Hunter (Charles Laughton)
  2. All that Heaven Allows (Douglas Sirk)
  3. Lola Montes (Max Ophuls)
  4. Rebel Without a Cause (Nicholas Ray)
  5. Rififi (Jules Dassin)
  6. Diabolique (Henri-Georges Clozout)
  7. It’s Always Fair Weather (Stanley Donen)
  8. Artists and Models (Frank Tashlin)
  9. To Catch a Thief (Alfred Hitchcock)
  10. Mr. Arkadin (Orson Welles)

1954

  1. Gojira (Ishiro Honda)
  2. Rear Window (Alfred Hitchcock)
  3. Voyage to Italy (Roberto Rossellini)
  4. Seven Samurai (Akira Kurosawa)
  5. Sansho the Baliff (Kenji Mizoguchi)
  6. A Star is Born (George Cukor)
  7. Dial M For Murder (Alfred Hitchcock)
  8. On the Waterfront (Elia Kazan)
  9. Sabrina (Billy Wilder)
  10. Creature from the Black Lagoon (Jack Arnold)

1953

  1. Gentlemen Prefer Blondes (Howard Hawks)
  2. The Earrings of Madame De… (Max Ophuls)
  3. Tokyo Story (Yasujiro Ozu)
  4. Ugetsu (Kenji Mizoguchi)
  5. White Mane (Albert Lamorisse)
  6. The Tell-Tale Heart (Ted Parlamee)
  7. Roman Holiday (William Wyler)
  8. The Big Heat (Fritz Lang)
  9. The Bigamist (Ida Lupino)
  10. The Hitch-Hiker (Ida Lupino)

1952

  1. Singin’ in the Rain (Stanley Donen & Gene Kelly)
  2. Limelight (Charlie Chaplin)
  3. Le Plaisir (Max Ophuls)
  4. Othello (Orson Welles)
  5. Trick or Treat (Jack Hannah)
  6. Feed the Kitty (Chuck Jones)
  7. Way of Gaucho (Jacques Tourneur)
  8. Bend of the River (Anthony Mann)
  9. Rabbit Seasoning (Chuck Jones)
  10. N/A

1951

  1. Hard, Fast & Beautiful (Ida Lupino)
  2. The Tales of Hoffmann (Powell and Pressburger)
  3. The Day the Earth Stood Still (Robert Wise)
  4. Anne of the Indies (Jacques Tourneur)
  5. Strangers on a Train (Alfred Hitchcock)
  6. The Thing From Another World (Christian Nyby and Howard Hawks)
  7. Ace in the Hole (Billy Wilder)
  8. Alice in Wonderland (Various)
  9. Mr. Hulot’s Holiday (Jacques Tati)
  10. A Streetcat Named Desire (Elia Kazan)

1950

  1. In a Lonely Place (Nicholas Ray)
  2. Orpheus (Jean Cocteau)
  3. All About Eve (Joseph L. Mankiewicz)
  4. Stars in my Crown (Jacques Tourneur)
  5. Sunset Blvd. (Billy Wilder)
  6. Gun Crazy (Joseph H. Lewis)
  7. Winchester ’73 (Anthony Mann)
  8. The Flame and the Arrow (Jacques Tourneur)
  9. The Asphalt Jungle (John Huston)
  10. Outrage (Ida Lupino)

1949

  1. Caught (Max Ophuls) 
  2. The Third Man (Carol Reed)
  3. Puce Moment (Kenneth Anger)
  4. Not Wanted (Ida Lupino)
  5. I Was a Male War Bride (Howard Hawks)
  6. On the Town (Stanley Donen)
  7. Jour de Fete (Jacques Tati)
  8. She Wore a Yellow Ribbon (John Ford)
  9. Stray Dog (Akira Kurosawa)
  10. Bitter Rice (Giuseppe De Santis)

1948

  1. The Red Shoes (Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger)
  2. Red River (Howard Hawks)
  3. Letter from an Unknown Woman (Max Ophuls)
  4. Woman (Keisuke Kinoshita)
  5. Women of the Night (Kenji Mizoguchi)
  6. Drunken Angel (Akira Kurosawa)
  7. Macbeth (Orson Welles)
  8. Bicycle Thieves (Vittorio De Sica)
  9. Meditation on Violence (Maya Deren)
  10. The Storm Within (Jean Cocteau)

1947

  1. Black Narcissus (Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger)
  2. Out of the Past (Jacques Tourneur)
  3. Monsieur Verdoux (Charlie Chaplin)
  4. Desire Me (Unconfirmed)
  5. The Lady From Shanghai (Orson Welles)
  6. Dark Passage (Delmer Davies)
  7. Nightmare Alley (Edmund Goulding)
  8. N/A
  9. N/A
  10. N/A

1946

  1. Notorious (Alfred Hitchcock)
  2.  The Big Sleep (Howard Hawks)
  3. Canyon Passage (Jacques Tourneur)
  4. Beauty and the Beast (Jean Cocteau)
  5. The Cat Concerto (William Hannah and Joseph Barbera)
  6. The Woman I Loved (Keisuke Kinoshita)
  7. It’s a Wonderful Life (Frank Capra)
  8. So Dark the Night (Joseph H. Lewis)
  9. The Stranger (Orson Welles)
  10. Bedlam (Mark Robson)

1945

  1. Brief Encounter (David Lean)
  2. The Body Snatcher (Robert Wise)
  3. Detour (Edgar G. Ulmer)
  4. Leave Her to Heaven (John M. Stahl)
  5. My Name is Julia Ross (Joseph H. Lewis)
  6. Sanshiro Sugata, Part Two (Akira Kurosawa)
  7. Spellbound (Alfred Hitchcock)
  8. Isle of the Dead (Mark Robson)
  9. N/A
  10. N/A

1944

  1. The Curse of the Cat People (Robert Wise)
  2. At Land (Maya Deren)
  3. Meet Me in St. Louis (Vincent Minnelli)
  4. To Have and Have Not (Howard Hawks)
  5. A Canterbury Tale (Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger)
  6. Laura (Otto Preminger)
  7. Gaslight (George Cukor)
  8. Lifeboat (Alfred Hitchcock)
  9. Double Indemnity (Billy Wilder)
  10. Witch’s Cradle (Maya Deren)

1943

  1. Meshes of the Afternoon (Maya Deren)
  2. The Life and Death of Colonel Blimp (Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger)
  3. I Walked with a Zombie (Jacques Tourneur)
  4. Shadow of a Doubt (Alfred Hitchcock)
  5. The Seventh Victim (Mark Robson)
  6. Porky Pig’s Feat. (Frank Tashlin)
  7. Day of Wrath (Carl Th. Dreyer)
  8. Sanshiro Sugata (Akira Kurosawa)
  9. The Leopard Man (Jacques Tourneur)
  10. The Ghost Ship (Mark Robson)

1942

  1. The Magnificent Ambersons (Orson Welles)
  2. Cat People (Jacques Tourneur)
  3. Casablanca (Michael Curtiz)
  4. I Married a Witch (Rene Clair)
  5. This Gun for Hire (Frank Tuttle)
  6. Bambi (Various)
  7. The Palm Beach Story (Preston Sturgess)
  8. Saboteur (Alfred Hitchcock)
  9. N/A
  10. N/A

1941

  1. Citizen Kane (Orson Welles)
  2. The Maltese Falcon (John Huston)
  3. Suspicion (Alfred Hitchcock)
  4. The Wolf-Man (George Waggner)
  5. The Lady Eve (Preston Sturgess)
  6. How Green Was My Valley (John Ford)
  7. N/A
  8. N/A
  9. N/A
  10. N/A

1940

  1. Rebecca (Alfred Hitchcock)
  2. The Shop Around the Corner (Ernst Lubitsch)
  3. Dance, Girl, Dance (Dorothy Arzner)
  4. His Girl Friday (Howard Hawks)
  5. The Great Dictator (Charlie Chaplin)
  6. The Philadelphia Story (George Cukor)
  7. The Grapes of Wrath (John Ford)
  8. Fantasia (Various)
  9. N/A
  10. N/A

1939

  1. Only Angels Have Wings (Howard Hawks)
  2. The Wizard of Oz (Various)
  3. Young Mr. Lincoln (John Ford)
  4. Son of Frankenstein (Rowland V. Lee)
  5. Gone With the Wind (Victor Fleming)
  6. Mr. Smith Goes to Washington (Frank Capra)
  7. Stagecoach (John Ford)
  8. The Rules of the Game (Jean Renoir)
  9. The Women (George Cukor)
  10. Popeye Aladdin (Dave Fleischer)

1938

  1. Mickey’s Trailer (Ben Sharpsteen)
  2. A Date to Skate (Dave Fleischer)
  3. Wholly Smoke (Frank Tashlin)
  4. Vivacious Lady (George Stevens)
  5. The Lady Vanishes (Alfred Hitchcock)
  6. Plumbing is a Pipe (Dave Fleischer)
  7. Daffy-duck & Egghead (Tex Avery)
  8. Brave Little Tailor (William Roberts)
  9. Boat Builders (Ben Sharpsteen)
  10. Bringing Up Baby (Howard Hawks)

1937

  1. Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (David Hand)
  2. Porky’s Duck Hunt (Tex Avery)
  3. Porky’s Romance (Frank Tashlin)
  4. The Case of the Stuttering Pig (Frank Tashlin)
  5. Paneless Window Washer (Dave Fleischer)
  6. Popeye the Sailor Meets Ali-Baba’s Forty Thieves (Dave Fleischer)
  7. A Star is Born (William A. Wellman)
  8. N/A
  9. N/A
  10. N/A

1936

  1. A Day in the Country (Jean Renoir)
  2. Somewhere in Dreamland (Dave Fleischer)
  3. Modern Times (Charlie Chaplin)
  4. Popeye the Sailor Meets Sinbad the Sailor (Dave Fleischer)
  5. The Blow Out (Tex Avery)
  6. The Only Son (Yasujiro Ozu)
  7. I Love to Singa (Tex Avery)
  8. Dracula’s Daughter (Lambert Hillyer)
  9. Osaka Elegy (Kenji Mizoguchi)
  10. Sisters of the Gion (Kenji Mizoguchi)

1935

  1. The Bride of Frankenstein (James Whale)
  2. The Band Concert (Wilfred Jackson)
  3. King of the Mardi Gras (Dave Fleischer)
  4. The 39 Steps (Alfred Hitchcock)
  5. The Raven (Lew Landers)
  6. Top Hat (Mark Sandrich)
  7. N/A
  8. N/A
  9. N/A
  10. N/A

1934

  1. The Scarlett Empress (Josef Von Sternberg)
  2. The Black Cat (Edgar G. Ulmer)
  3. The Gambling Lady (Archie Mayo)
  4. It Happened One Night (Frank Capra)
  5. The Goddess (Yonggang Wu)
  6. N/A
  7. N/A
  8. N/A
  9. N/A
  10. N/A

1933

  1. The Gold Diggers of 1933 (Mervyn Leroy)
  2. 42nd Street (Lloyd Bacon)
  3. Snow White (Dave Fleischer)
  4. Duck Soup (Leo McCarey)
  5. King Kong (Merian C. Cooper)
  6. Betty Boop’s May Party (Dave Fleischer)
  7. Is My Palm Read? (Dave Fleischer)
  8. The Invisible Man (James Whale)
  9. Baby Face (Alfred E. Green)
  10. The Old Man of the Mountain (Dave Fleischer)

1932

  1. Shanghai Express (Josef Von Sternberg)
  2. Trouble in Paradise (Ernst Lubitsch)
  3. Minnie the Moocher (Dave Fleischer)
  4. Vampyr (Carl Th. Dreyer)
  5. What Price Hollywood? (George Cukor)
  6. Betty Boop M.D. (Dave Fleischer)
  7. A Hunting We Will Go (Dave Fleischer)
  8. That Old Dark House (James Whale)
  9. Island of Lost Souls (Erle C. Kenton)
  10. Grand Hotel (Edmund Goulding)

1931

  1. City Lights (Charlie Chaplin)
  2. Dishonored (Josef Von Sternberg)
  3. Madchen in Uniform (Leontine Sagan and Carl Froelich)
  4. M. (Fritz Lang)
  5. Frankenstein (James Whale)
  6. Bimbo’s Initiation (Dave Fleischer & Grim Natwick)
  7. Night Nurse (William A. Wellman)
  8. Dizzy Red Riding Hood (Dave Fleischer)
  9. The Miracle Woman (Frank Capra)
  10. Dracula (Tod Browning)

1930

  1. Blood of a Poet (Jean Cocteau)
  2. Morocco (Josef Von Sternberg)
  3. The Blue Angel (Josef Von Sternberg)
  4. Swing You Sinners! (Dave Fleischer)
  5. Ladies of Leisure (Frank Capra)
  6. Monte Carlo (Ernst Lubitsch)
  7. L’age Dor (Luis Bunuel)
  8. Dizzy Dishes (Dave Fleischer)
  9. Barnacle Bill (Dave Fleischer)
  10. The Divorcee (Robert Z. Leonard)

1929

  1. Man with a Movie Camera (Dziga Vertov)
  2. Un Chien Andalou (Luis Bunuel and Salvador Dahli)
  3. Blackmail (Alfred Hitchcock)
  4. Rain (Joris Ivens and Mannus Franken)
  5. Days of Youth (Yasujiro Ozu)
  6. N/A
  7. N/A
  8. N/A
  9. N/A
  10. N/A

1928

  1. The Passion of Joan of Arc (Carl Th. Dreyer)
  2. Koko’s Earth Control (Dave Fleischer)
  3. Steamboat Bill Jr. (Buster Keaton)
  4. The Fall of the House of Usher (Jean Epstein)
  5. Steamboat Willie (Ub Iwerks)
  6. N/A
  7. N/A
  8. N/A
  9. N/A
  10. N/A

1927

  1. Sunrise: A Song of Two Humans (F.W. Murnau)
  2. L’invitation au Voyage (Germaine Dulac)
  3. Metropolis (Fritz Lang)
  4. The Lodger (Alfred Hitchcock)
  5. The Cat and the Canary (Paul Leni)
  6. N/A
  7. N/A
  8. N/A
  9. N/A
  10. N/A

1926

  1. Faust (F.W. Murnau)
  2. The General (Buster Keaton)
  3. A Page of Madness (Teinosuke Kinugaza)
  4. The Adventures of Prince Achmed (Lottie Reineger, Karl Coch)
  5. N/A
  6. N/A
  7. N/A
  8. N/A
  9. N/A
  10. N/A

1925

  1. Battleship Potempkin (Sergei Eisenstein)
  2. Strike! (Sergei Eisenstein)
  3. The Gold Rush (Charlie Chaplin)
  4. Seven Chances (Buster Keaton)
  5. N/A
  6. N/A
  7. N/A
  8. N/A
  9. N/A
  10. N/A

1924

  1. Sherlock Jr. (Buster Keaton)
  2. Ballet Mecanique (Fernand Ledger, Dudley Murphey)
  3. N/A
  4. N/A
  5. N/A
  6. N/A
  7. N/A
  8. N/A
  9. N/A
  10. N/A

1923

  1. Safety Last! (Fred C. Newmayer, Sam Taylor)
  2. A Woman of Paris (Charlie Chaplin)
  3. N/A
  4. N/A
  5. N/A
  6. N/A
  7. N/A
  8. N/A
  9. N/A
  10. N/A

1922

  1. Nosferatu (F.W. Murnau)
  2. Haxan: Witchcraft Through the Ages (Benjamin Christensen)
  3. Bubbles (Dave Fleischer)
  4. Jumping Beans (Dave Fleischer)
  5. N/A
  6. N/A
  7. N/A
  8. N/A
  9. N/A
  10. N/A

1921

  1. The Phantom Carriage (Victor Sjolstrom)
  2. The Kid (Charlie Chaplin)
  3. Invisible Ink (Dave Fleischer)
  4. Modeling (Dave Fleischer)
  5. N/A
  6. N/A
  7. N/A
  8. N/A
  9. N/A
  10. N/A

1920

  1. The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari (Robert Wiene)
  2. Leaves out of the Book of Satan (Carl Th. Dreyer)
  3. N/A
  4. N/A
  5. N/A
  6. N/A
  7. N/A
  8. N/A
  9. N/A
  10. N/A

*There are other films I have seen before 1920, but compiling a list of those seems unreasonable at the moment. They may be added later. Feel free to recommend movies (especially for weaker lists!)

The Revenant (Alejandro González Iñárritu, 2015)

Iñárritu is a unabashedly simplistic filmmaker, and he knows that to be true so he covers up his inability to say anything of profundity with showmanship. Emmanuel Lubezki is his perfect partner, because like Iñárritu his images over-compensate, and at two and a half hours their abilities begin to wear thin, and what you have is two filmmakers grasping at how to reign in a film that has fallen completely out of their control. In a way it is fitting that their intentions to make The Revenant as realistic as possible left both men lost in the woods of their own ideas.
And those ideas remain simplistic as well. The Revenant attempts to channel something evocative of Apocalypse Now, but it isn’t nearly as complicated as Coppola’s dense war picture. The Revenant is a simple moral tale of revenge. When Iñárritu goes for narrative beats he cannot help but make distinctly clear these are the good guys and the bad guys. Instead of complicating his characters he fashions one of them as a murderer with no redeeming qualities whatsoever- that would be Tom Hardy in yet another role where he, like Iñárritu shows his lack of ability by overperforming in every possible scene. But the tale of revenge isn’t the only idea stewing in Iñárritu’s pot of shit. He also wants you to know about the plight of Native Americans so he tacks on a plot about a chief’s daughter being taken by a group of white men and then refuses to elaborate further on that story. There is also man against nature which is probably the most interesting of these threads that barely make up a movie, but Iñárritu knows no delivery other than sledgehammer obviousness so everything is made out to be cold and brutal, as much of a nightmare as the bloodstained corpses is the fact that there is no escaping the grip of death through the frost. It functions as a metaphor, but has all the grace of a series of Game of Thrones scenes featuring the always dull Jon Snow.
Poor Leonardo DiCaprio turns his body into Iñárritu’s clay and is met with the violence inherent in the man’s cinema. However, DiCaprio is much too boyish and iconic to pull off a role of this “toughness”. He squints, grunts and screams his way through visceral terror for a man who is giving him nothing back. If he does win an Academy Award for this role we will hopefully be blessed with the sense that one of our greatest actors no longer has to make himself a martyr for cinema- poor cinema at that.
The Revenant contains one good sequence, and it is at the beginning of the film and the selling point of the trailer. Lubezki and Iñárritu finally coalesce into something memorable with tracking shots that closely resemble the final confrontation in Children of Men, but once the film slows down, and DiCaprio has to trudge through the snow, to crawl to his vengeance, the film becomes tiresome. A series of punishments, and a resolution that finds one man calling another man’s son a girl. God bless masculinity.

Female Filmmaker Project: The Gold Diggers (Sally Potter, 1983)

I find it charming that the first film I ended up viewing for this project in 2015 was helmed by an entirely female crew (outside of some actors), and specifically about the intersections between women and capitalism. Sally Potter finds herself creating a kind of dystopia, but one born out of real life problems faced by women, and in the context of today’s “Lean In” feminist discourse it remains all the more searing about capitalism’s blatant misogyny. Men follow our two women leads (Julie Christie and Colette Laffont) doggedly even though these women try to escape. Metaphorically linking the problems of breaking free from a patriarchal society and how that ties up in capitalism. Many of the same men that follow these women into back alley’s and up stair wells appear as their bosses in other scenes. In one moment Laffont is working inside of an office surrounded by desks and computers (this is reminiscent of The Trial in a modern setting in how it’s framed and how terrifying those rows of desks appear. The terror of the mundane is also present in 1991’s undervalued The Rapture), as she asks one question “What do these numbers mean?” her white boss speaks down to her and the film moves into a dream sequence where the men of the world literally sit on desks that appear ten feet in the air as any woman would have to look up to him just to get a response. It feels as if Terry Gilliam even references some of these same visual ideas a few years later in Brazil as this dream sequences is also made of shapes, cubes and also feels as thin as paper.

The film also has a fascination with how money effects celebrity. A matriarchal figure appears in queenlike fashion towards the end, but it isn’t so much a scene of success on her part for having broken through this system as it feels like a moment where her celebrity gives her the privilege of existing without the issues of finance. Men carry her around and preach about gold, but it doesn’t effect her. This is one of only two real scenes where women are seen as being above men on a visual level. The other scene features a dance, and echoes a “what if” scenario as women unshackle themselves from dancing men and embrace each other instead. They twirl around and the black/white colour scheme no longer fills the screen, instead it’s filled with transcendent whites as the men hit the floor and the women run off to do whatever they want. It’s a real sense of freedom, and plays opposite to the scenes where our two female leads cannot escape men.

Gold Diggers doesn’t exist exclusively in the role of woman though, even if it’s more consistently about them. There are scenes where the problems of how our financial system effects men as well. The name of the film takes it’s cue from the recurring image of men hiking along a hill in the dead cold of an ice-y winter just trying to make ends meet for their families. The monochromatic colour scheme is only pierced by the clothes on their back as they hike and hike. They appear to be absolutely miserable; cogs in a machine, and ultimately working towards their own dead end as they walk into nothingness. The other scene where men find themselves sympathetic is in the dream sequence I mentioned above in the computer workspace. One man continually does the motions of his superior. He mimicks his voice, his actions, he sits beside him, and this once again conveys a sense of being a cog in a machine. He’s kissing ass for forward mobility.

The Gold Diggers ultimately leaves me asking myself the questions of what does a capitalist system ultimately benefit, and the thesis of the picture would have you believe it is oppressive, and more specifically to women.

John Carpenter’s Cigarette Burns

31 Day Horror Challenge
Cigarette Burns: Directed by John Carpenter
Film Write Up #2
Rewatch

What is the nature of cinema? What is the nature of horror? John Carpenter’s Cigarette Burns asks these questions through the lens of the horror landscape of 2005, but in truth this was something that had been building for a long time. The definition of horror is revulsion, and in the context of cinema the horror film can do more than just that, but it’s primary focus is still to repel or scare. In the 70s you had The Texas Chainsaw Massacre which evolved into Cannibal Holocaust and filmmaking kept moving further and further into the world of extreme violence within horror culminating with films like Saw,Hostel and the French New Extreme movement to encapsulate this feeling that horror was moving towards something far more graphic. Just how far could horror go when we’ve become so desensitized to violence that there are literally no more rules for what you can show? A better question is what does a film have to do nowadays to truly shock? In Cigarette Burns a hypothetical film exists that is so terrible and so horrific that it cannot be shown without causing murder among its audience members. 

John Carpenter came to us through that cinematic realm of fright, and he made his home on the margins or terror, and this is his eulogy to a genre he didn’t have much use for anymore. John Carpenter is not the man who is going to rely on torture to get a rise out of his audience and he certainly isn’t going to be the man to break that trust that one character mentions here (audiences trust directors to guide them, but never take things too far). He grew up idolizing Howard Hawks, and even if his intentions got dark (The Thing) he was still aiming to entertain an audience. He wasn’t going to punish them with long takes of the worst aspects of humanity, because ultimately he is a humanist. He may make pictures about the end of the world, but his band of misfits are going to go out swinging if it kills them. However, in Cigarette Burns Carpenter seems a bit defeated. His strengths as a filmmaker are still present, but there are no heroes in this movie, and one could hardly consider it a film within Carpenter’s oeuvre, because it goes so far out of its way to damn the audience and the genre it’s discussing. What’s wrong with us that we want to see such horrible imagery? What if the horror of the on screen image in horror pictures was suddenly turning up in cinemas due to the effect of a film? Would we deserve it for wanting to see such horrible things? Cigarette Burns answers with a resounding yes.

Dis Moi (Chantal Akerman, 1980)

Female Filmmaker Project

I’ve watched films without subtitles before and I went into this not knowing what it was about and I assumed Akerman’s form would make sense for not exactly understanding what the characters were saying. It does but, this is a film largely about conversations between Akerman and Holocaust survivors. Akerman herself has family ties to the Holocaust. Her grandparents died in Auschwitz and most of her mother’s family perished as well. This is a heavy subject for her to confront. I wish that I could know what these women were saying. I’m sure it was heartbreaking, human, and powerful. I hope one day there are subs available somewhere so I can give this a proper viewing. Although I assume learning french might be an easier route.

Aside from the fact that I didn’t know what the characters were saying I still enjoyed watching this for the way Akerman constructs images. There is a connection between this and Jeanne Dielman, News From Home and Meetings of Anna in form. The long static takes built around a person and what they’re doing in a room are here, as well as the lingering takes on people in a city setting. She also finds ways to frame these women in new ways from interview to interview. In one take she shoots an interview with the glare from a spotless dining room table visible, and the light from a window is shining on her subject. Moments later she uses mirrors to specifically show a reflection of another woman in a dining room symmetrically framed by two plants on either side of Akerman and her subject. There is even an extended section of one of the women cooking which calls up the rigorous camera work in Jeanne Dielman. Akerman’s work has always felt like an extension of documentarianism (News From Home and Hotel Monterey) and I found her eye for creating images to be just as strong when she uses the talking head format that most documentaries use. My favourite moment of the film was when Chantal and one of her interviewees sits down for dinner together and Akerman nods off. The other woman wakes her up and they both give each other a little smile. I may have not known what anyone was saying throughout the entirety of this, but that warm moment of recognition between the two transcends language.

L’Intrus (Claire Denis, 2004

Female Filmmaker Project
What’s remarkable about Claire Denis’ L’Intrus is that at a structural level it is maybe her most cinematic feature to date, and I don’t mean that in terms of big or sweeping. I think cinema as a medium is visual at it’s core. It is about telling a story through images and L’Intrus is built up entirely on images. The narrative is stated in any expositional terms by any character, but shown in every frame. This makes L’Intrus her most basic achievement in cinema and her most difficult statement, because it’s entirely interpretational. I’m not sure if what I’m seeing is a vision, a dream or reality but in every image there’s meaning both obvious (dogs eating a heart) and cryptic (I’m still not sure what the dogs mean). This makes L’Intrus feel challenging, but in truth everything is laid out there for you to have as you will.

 After recently viewing Chantal Akerman’s Hotel Monterey I also thought about this as a film about the idea of home, but instead of it being only about the nature of a home as a place it is about the body as a home. Louis Trébor (Michel Subor) is a man who needs a heart transplant, and with the heart being an essence of life and perhaps even a metaphor for the soul does that mean without his heart is he now homeless within his own body? I think Denis’ film points towards yes. After his heart transplant he wanders aimlessly. He isn’t quite himself anymore. He moves from country to country and nothing feels quite right for him. He cannot settle and even his family feels different.

Denis has always been a filmmaker of bodies and the tone of her films often appear in the way she shoots those figures. She’s always close, framing them closely into the lens, and often focusing on one body part. She’ll move the camera over one’s body and depending on how she does all of this she creates different tones of physique. In Vendredi Soir the human body is sensual, alive with passion and free. In Bastards she took sexuality and used it for horror. In L’Intrus Louis body feels cold and in a way dead. He has a scar running up and down his chest and every time we see his frame it’s draped in this cool grey or blue lighting or he’s hooked up to a machine. There is no warmth in his soul after he loses his original heart. He’s essentially homeless in his own body. This is in stark contrast to the way Louis’ grandson is shot earlier in the film when his face is covered in sunlight and has a smile on his face. He has his original heart after all.

This makes me think Denis’ film is also about aging and regret. Louis’ has never been a good father. His entire family is estranged and he doesn’t even know his grandchildren. Despite his heart transplant he is sickly and even if he continues he doesn’t have the warmth of life in him. He doesn’t have a family so in one of the more absurd scenes a group of people he’s living with hold auditions to be his new son. While on his death bed he has one final vision of his son with the same scar running down his chest, he sees a coffin later and Louis is then on a boat. I think this signifies his son being the one thing he lost in life that he wishes he could have back.

What makes L’Intrus so fascinating is how flexible it is, and how someone else could easily come up with something different. In the power of cinema as an artistic medium I think a viewer can see what they want to and go on their own path. L’Intrus is one of those films. It feels expansive and in it’s imagery so very human. We all have dreams that we’re unsure of the meaning and one of the coolest things about cinema is that it can sometimes act as a function of those dreams. Where everything is endless and definition is mutable.

Hotel Monterey

 Female Filmmaker Project
A home feels eternal. It’s that one place you run to for safety, warmth and solace in the wake of everything else that is wrong with the world. You can always count on a home to be there for you. It exists in a place separate and unique and it is yours. They are also fragile and with time can evolve into hotels. When your home becomes a temporary residence it feels like you’ve lost a loved one. That safety and place just for you is gone and it isn’t easy to find a new one. Losing your home is a kind of death, and hotels have always felt like graveyards. The residents shuffle about only temporarily like wayward ghosts and then they’re gone. The rooms are all made up for residents who will never truly love them and these beds are never more than places of temporary comfort. Time passes in Hotels like still slowly beating clocks until you can leave this place and return to what you would call home, but what are you supposed to do when everything is a hotel?

Chantal Akerman’s Hotel Monterey is a dissection of an empty palace. The rooms are perfectly kept together waiting for someone to welcome, but no one comes. The camera sits in long static shots of the architecture that was built to house people on their way as a temporary home, but the walls echo sadness. The point of view of the camera is seemingly trapped in this world staring at these walls. These beautiful, decaying walls built as a substitute to a real home. Elevators move up and down and people enter their rooms and occasionally peer out at this lost soul but never say anything. They are only here for a short time of course. We move up through this labyrinth of partial respite and peer out the windows looking for escape, and maybe that true home lurks out there somewhere. When the darkness of the night finally lifts and we stand on the roof peering out over the city an additional sadness pours over our viewpoint. The same houses and windows we’ve been longing for are reflected once we got out. The windows are boarded up, cracked and broken and the buildings look filthy. This isn’t the warmth of what a home should look like. We peer 180 degrees looking for something but only find more hotels and nothing resembling a home.

Chantal Akerman’s film is brilliant at capturing that loneliness of having nowhere to head for comfort, and not having that can feel like the end of the world. It’s a depressive state as bleak as those murky walls that cover the hotel, and it can feel never ending. I’m still reaching for a home that I will find some day and being in that in-between state is a trapped feeling. A feeling that is evoked perfectly in the halls of Hotel Monterey

reposted on Letterboxd

The Optimism of Zero

Synthesizers buzz and hum as she puts on her makeup and zips up her PVC outfit. She runs her hand down her bangs and grabs her leather jacket. Her initials are on the back and she slides it on. She stands behind a curtain waiting to show herself to the world. This is her look and she’s proud. She has one final unsure look on her face and then pulls the curtain back to rapturous applause and she struts down the empty street evolving into dance. The song soars in praise with her. It’s her life and her self-expression and she is showing it to everyone. All she can do in response is dance while others look on. They look a little surprised by her outfit and her attitude but they see that she’s happy and eventually she runs into people who smile upon seeing her.
In these four minutes The Yeah Yeah Yeah’s Zero directed by Barney Clay is deeply humanistic in a completely optimistic and joyful way. In this world, self-expression equals true joy, and the only responsible way to act on joy is through dance as Karen O suggests here when she seems so happy that she dances on top of cars. We live in a cinematic world where the most prized stories are about tragedy and the films that make the most money, and therefore control the Hollywood system, are about the end of the world or general destruction with no consequences. Even in television the narratives are controlled by serial killers, cops, and bad men. The musical, screwball comedy, and romantic comedy are nearly all dead so where did good feelings go? We live in a scary enough world that we don’t always need it reflected back at us on screen but our avenues for escapism are dour. Zero was made a few years ago, but I think its joyfulness is still relevant today. It’s self-empowerment of expression through choice is vastly important and in a time where things like selfies are constantly criticized as being vain and narcissistic Zero presents a different idea. It’s happiness within self so much so that you just have to dance, and there’s absolutely nothing wrong with being happy. That’s what we all want. Isn’t it?

2013: Year in Review


I live in a world of dreams. I sit and watch images pass by me as they find their way into my memory and my heart. I vicariously live through their suffering, heartache, triumph and desires. I latch onto the images and stories of people I wish I could be and the people I wish I could know without this boundary of screen, but I find myself there while it lasts and for moments I am with them and they are a part of my world. It’s not just the power of escapism that draws me to cinema, but the power of seeing entire worlds created and finding a connection to those people living within them. I live my life through the scope of everything I experience within the world of cinema. It has been the one constant in my life for as long as I can remember and those experiences I had with this sacred art in 2013 were immense and unforgettable.

Best Films
1. Top of the Lake (Jane Campion): Campion’s mini-series seems to play out like a 21stCentury reimagining of the cryptic small town setting and abject weirdness of Twin Peaks, but turns out being much darker than one could have imagined. The difference between something like Peaks and Lake is that Campion never shrouds the evil of humanity in a metaphorical evil spirit. She plays everything much closer to reality and the evil that Top of the Lake confronts is rape culture.  It’s pervasive, creeping and around every corner of the world these characters live in, and I’m not sure if a more poignant film came out this past year.

2. Frances Ha (Noah Baumbach): A film about Female friendship as platonic soul mates, economic frustrations, arrested development and dance all wrapped up in a nice French New Wave inspired package. This film lives and dies on the strength of Greta Gerwig and luckily she’s at a career best. It’s telling that so many people relate to Frances. I think in part it’s because she serves as a kind of mascot for the current generation of post-graduates who are trying to find their way in the world. Baumbach and Gerwig capture those feelings of plowing ahead through uncertainty perfectly. Although there should have been more dance. More dance in movies in 2014 please
3. Spring Breakers (Harmony Korine): I’m convinced Spring Breakers is a film of contradictions, and an endlessly fascinating one. Feminism exists within surface level male gaze, Terrence Malick’s ethereal templates are grafted onto Spring Break culture, Korine shows affection for his characters while simultaneously damning them. All these things together create something that is ridiculously compelling from a purely interpretational viewpoint, and when you add onto that the pop art aesthetic being baptized in the waters of Malick and Mann you have something truly unique.

4. Drug War (Johnnie To): Johnnie To’s brand of film making has often been compared to Jazz at times (especially in the case of something like Sparrow, and rightfully so), but in Drug War it’s a little different and I’m more prone to compare his work in action to thrash metal. The way everything is so tightly constructed, the way the action viscerally moves from one scene to the next without losing the rhythm of the movement. It’s anything but rigid, and like thrash metal it moves over you like a machine and pummels everything in it’s way.
5.  Inside Llewyn Davis (Joel and Ethan Coen): It’s not entirely difficult to make the claim that this is the Coen’s Ulysses to their Odysseus (O Brother, Where Art Thou?). Filled to the brim with the kind of darkly comic tragedy we’ve come to expect from them and punctuated by an incredible soundtrack. I still have Please Mr. Kennedy stuck in my head. Someone please send help.
6. The Unspeakable Act (Dan Sallitt): A film dedicated to Rohmer that echoes his influence on cinema. The way Sallitt has a control of the rhythm of dialogue calls upon the late director’s work and the transgressive look at incestual desire always feels respected and not presented as taboo. It’s just a facet of this young girls blossoming sexuality. Tallie Medel is astounding and the therapy sessions are something of a marvel in the way he makes sitting and talking feel vibrant and alive.
7. White Reindeer (Zach Clark): For a little while White Reindeer held the top spot on my year end list, and I still love it deeply. Zach Clark’s picture absolutely floored me when I watched it earlier this year, and captures spiraling depression in a really human and loving way. Anna Margaret Hollyman also gives the best performance I’ve seen all year. The film is really funny too.

8. Wolf Children (Mamoru Hosada): Making me cry is a common theme of the films I tend to fall in love with and it was no different this year. Wolf Children left me in a pool of tears. The melodrama is incredible and the single parent-motherhood narrative mixed with it’s identity politics really hit close to home.
9. Bastards (Claire Denis): There is something deliriously evil about this film. Claire Denis and Agnes Godard’s collaborations have never been this bleak and pessimistic. Every ounce of her usual sensual-bodies in motion- style is demonized and repurposed to chill instead of sensualize. Like my #1 of the year Top of the Lake it takes you down the rabbit hole of a pervasive culture and like that film as well it’s horrifying to find out what lies at the center.

10. Lesson of the Evil (Takashi Miike): This may very well be the most nihilistic film of the lot, but I can’t help but fall in love with Miike’s craft, the colours he uses and the black comedy inherent within slasher films to once again show everyone who the best in the world is at making horror films. (This might have been undistributed. It had a NY festival date so I’m counting it)

The other films I loved this year
11. The World’s End (Edgar Wright)
12. Fast & Furious Six (Justin Lin)
13. The Punk Singer (Sini Anderson)
14. Laurence Anyways (Xavier Dolan)
15. Viola (Matías Piñeiro) 

16. Stories We Tell (Sarah Polley)
17. The Wolf of Wall Street (Martin Scorsese)
18. Computer Chess (Andrew Bujalski)
19. Before Midnight (Richard Linklater)
20. The Heat (Paul Feig)
21. 12 Years a Slave (Steve McQueen)
22. The Grandmaster (Wong Kar Wai)
23. Leviathan (Lucien Casting-Taylor, Verena Paravel)
24. Frozen (Jennifer Lee, Chris Buck)
25. The Past (Asghar Farhadi)

Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson (Pain & Gain)
Anna Margaret Hollyman (White Reindeer)
Chiwetel Ejiofor (12 Years a Slave)
Lupita Nyong’o (12 Years a Slave)
Leonardo DiCaprio (The Wolf of Wall Street)
Suzanne Clement (Laurence Anyways)
Oscar Isaac (Inside Llewyn Davis)
Greta Gerwig (Frances Ha)
James Franco (Spring Breakers)
Zhang Zyi (The Grandmaster)
Simon Pegg (The World’s End)
Amy Acker (Much Ado About Nothing)
Nick Frost (The World’s End)
Julie Delpy (Before Midnight)
Sun Honglei (Drug War)
Emma Watson (The Bling Ring)
Adam Driver (Inside Llewyn Davis)
Adepero Oduye (12 Years a Slave)
Mattew McConaughey (The Wolf of Wall Street)
Melissa McCarthy (The Heat)

*I would have liked to have written something about their performances, but I quickly realized that is not my forte and it would have quickly devolved into cliche acting buzzwords so I’ll spare you all from that.

Best Direction: Johnnie To: Drug War
Runner Up: Claire Denis: Bastards

Best Cinematography: Benoit Debie: Spring Breakers
Runner Up: Emmanuel Lubezki: To the Wonder

Best Screenplay: Dan Sallitt: The Unspeakable Act
Runner Up: Joel and Ethan Coen: Inside Llewyn Davis

Best Usage of Music (this means ALL music): Laurence Anyways
Runner Up: Inside Llewyn Davis/Bastards/Spring Breakers

Best Undistributed Film: Blind Detective (Johnnie To) *Sammi Cheng gives maybe my favourite performance of the year as well. Here is hoping it gets a 2014 release

Most Quotable Movie: Frances Ha (Ahoy, Sexy! Frances Undateable)
Runner Up: The World’s End (Oh, Fuck Off! You Big Lamp! Smashy Smashy Eggman)

In closing I just want to say I had a great year, and each year in cinema always opens itself up to more viewings and reworking your favourites over the years. Life through cinema is a never ending journey and this post is only a checkpoint, a timestamp of my opinion at this moment, because I still have so much more to see and to discover and I can’t wait to find out. I know 2014 will bring just as many riches.

My Apocalypse: Metallica Through the Never

Originally posted on Letterboxd

I find it a little bit odd that my two favourite bands (Metallica, Bikini Kill) from my teenage years ended up getting films made about them in 2013 (the other being The Punk Singer). My relationship with Metallica is a lot less complicated than the one I have with Bikini Kill. It basically comes down to the fact that I always thought their music kicked ass, and as juvenile as it sounds that’s still pretty much the crux of my relationship with Metallica. There was a time when I was so heavily into the band that I listened to Master of Puppets daily. My relationship has since cooled, but that doesn’t mean I didn’t enjoy the sheer absurdity of Metallica’s Apocalypse Concert film Through The Never.

During the first few minutes of Through the Never I thought for sure this was going to be nearly cringe worthy. I mean Lead vocalist/rhythm guitarist James Hetfield drives by in a car that shoots flames out the back, a rabid Metallica fan arrives at the show first and starts screaming the band’s name at the top of his lungs, and Bassist Robert Trujillo literally is playing bass in a room with vibrations coming off the walls that it distorts the image. Then something came to me. I’m watching a concert film about Metallica and they have NEVER been a subtle band, and once I actually started to go along with some of the more bizarre narrative moments I settled into the groove of what the film was trying to do and that’s represent the spirit/attitude and imagery of a live Metallica show. Much like the way 200 Motels would represent the filmic version of what Frank Zappa’s music sounded like Through The Never does the same for Metallica. It’s in your face, brash, and very straightforward.

However, the concert itself is where I think most of the strength of the picture lies. They recreate some of their albums covers on stage and even go back through some of their greatest hits of stage antics (the flaming man who ruins the stage is taken from 1996’s Cunning Stunts and Lady Justice falling apart was a staple of their …And Justice For All tour in the late 80s). It’s always fascinating to watch and never feels like four guys just playing on stage. They definitely perform with the intentions of the stage show being as great as the music they perform and that was an admirable decision. Nimrod Antal also keeps the show interesting in the way he shoots the band. His framing is way above par for the home video releases of the previous concert films the band has released and also injects some nice visual moments into the picture. One moment of hazy red lighting from above casting a warmness over Hetfield as he stands between each cymbal on the left and right side of the drum set was an especially strong image, and probably the finest visual moment at hand.

I think this is best suited for fans of the band, but there is probably enough here to keep non fans interested for 90 minutes. The concert always looks dazzling and the band has been performing long enough that they know how to work an audience. They have a level of professionalism that only comes with performing live for 30 years, and it shows in just how appreciative they seem of their audience while still being as aggressive as they can be in their middle age. This is a band still at the zenith of their popularity making a movie that they probably all wished they could have made when they were 16 years old, and I find that youthful charm to be refreshing after the self seriousness of Some Kind of Monster. These are still basically the same guys who recorded Kill ‘Em All, and it’s only fitting that when all the dust settles and all the story ends it’s just four guys sitting in a room playing, because they’ve always been a band that prides themselves on the music they create whether people love it or hate it, and I’m sure they feel that same pride about this film.