Click to Skip Ad
Closing in...
Celebrating 17 Years of Film.Biz.Fans.

Decade's Best

  • REVERSEBLOG: the reverse shot blog
    0 comments
    tweet
    0

    Best of the Decade #11

    Few contemporary films manage to span the critical and popular culture divide to capture the collective imagination in electric, unifying ecstasy, but Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind makes the feat look easy. Did any other film this decade communicate on such an emotionally immediate level to both crowds? To some extent it probably could’ve succeeded purely on the fumes of its brilliant premise, so tapped into a universal yearning—nearly everyone has at some point dreamed of erasing the pain of heartbreak by expunging an ex from memory—that the layers of built-in resonance might have easily been squandered. Lucky for us that Eternal Sun...

    Read More »
  • REVERSEBLOG: the reverse shot blog
    0 comments
    tweet
    0

    Best of the Decade #12

    There has been talk this past year of the dour mood in cinema. The Cannes and New York film festivals, the polestars of American art-house culture, excited some and repelled many with their lineups of “gruesome,” “pessimistic,” and “bleak” provocations. Elitist, that dreaded word, was paraded out and slapped on both festivals, which were accused of being interested only in shoving veggies or dirt into the mouths of moviegoers. But such complaints are nothing new. Movies have always been a mass medium—and artists have long sought to expand the bounds of that definition. That tension between popular entertainment and high ambition is at the hea...

    Read More »
  • REVERSEBLOG: the reverse shot blog
    0 comments
    tweet
    0

    Best of the Decade #13

    Cinephilia is usually characterized as an insatiable, promiscuous kind of love, but Edward Yang’s Yi Yi tempts me to think of it as monogamous. While this certainly isn’t the only film I’ve ever held dear, the reverence it commands leads me to a few hyperbolic convictions most often associated with romantic commitment: that its entrance into my life was destined; that I never truly loved before it; that it will always mean this much to me. As with most worthwhile passions, though, this personal canon of one arouses an impulse for self-doubt. What is it in Yi Yi that makes me think, however momentarily, that I could relinquish the rest of cine...

    Read More »
  • REVERSEBLOG: the reverse shot blog
    0 comments
    tweet
    0

    Best of the Decade #14

    On a cold night in late February 2007, I made a pilgrimage to the Brooklyn Academy of Music to acquaint myself with the work of Béla Tarr, a filmmaker whose name had become emblematic of formidable intellect, exhaustive running times, and a rapturously grand vision. This was mostly due to the proselytizing of Susan Sontag and other critics smitten by Tarr’s seven-and-a-half-hour magnum opus Sátántangó, a legendary, see-it-if-you-can rarity reportedly on par with Rivette’s equally elusive Out 1. It hardly mattered that, on this particular evening, everyone in my immediate social circle was gathering at various domestic outposts to revel in a v...

    Read More »
  • REVERSEBLOG: the reverse shot blog
    0 comments
    tweet
    0

    Best of the Decade #15

    In a decade when American studios seemed to discontinue serious dramas, or cynically relegate them to their independent divisions, one of the most poignant and heartrending stories of family came from a filmmaker blindly decried as a purveyor of dollhouse quirk and precocity. While wavelets of European and Asian filmmakers continued to respond to Hollywood with various counter-aesthetics of long takes, temps mort, and empirical narratives, Wes Anderson lavished attention on the individuality of his characters and their surroundings with the elaborate production design of an old Hollywood musical and the connoisseurship of a subsequent admirin...

    Read More »
  • REVERSEBLOG: the reverse shot blog
    0 comments
    tweet
    0

    Best of the Decade #16

    Olivier Assayas’s Summer Hours begins in the country home of the Berthier family’s elegant matriarch, Hélène (Edith Scob). Her three children and many grandchildren have come to celebrate her 75th birthday and the publication of a book about her renowned artist uncle and possible one-time lover, Paul Berthier. Serving as a monument to Paul’s work and vast collection of objets d’art, as well as the only real gathering place for Hélène’s far-flung family, the house is filled with beautiful, well worn things that are cherished upon reflection yet taken for granted on a day-to-day basis. Sitting in the garden and looking through the book, the fam...

    Read More »
  • REVERSEBLOG: the reverse shot blog
    0 comments
    tweet
    0

    Best of the Decade #17

    Joel and Ethan Coen joked that putting Cormac McCarthy’s novel No Country for Old Men in script form was just a matter of retyping. One brother held the book ajar, the other entered its contents into the computer. Indeed, McCarthy’s 2005 bestseller, unanimously described as “sparse,” “skeletal,” and “spare,” unfolds through dialogue and action rather than the “subjective interiority” of its characters. The lone inner voice, first-person narration from the sheriff, bookends the introduction and conclusion, and is italicized, as if to announce VOICE OVER. If it reads like a screenplay half-shrouded in flowery prose, that’s basically what it is—...

    Read More »
  • REVERSEBLOG: the reverse shot blog
    2 comments
    tweet
    0

    Best of the Decade #18

    The eponymous hero of Cristi Puiu’s 2005 film The Death of Mr. Lazarescu is dwarfed by his epic name. This man, paunchy, disheveled, and suffering, is Dante Remus Lazarescu. Evoking Dante Alighieri, Lazarescu descends into an inferno where each circle of hell takes the form of a different hospital. He has no familiar guide to comfort him as he traverses this purgatory (his brother-in-law, Virgil, lives far away and is only good for a loan), and he is older and weaker than the literary legend who bears his name. Lazarescu’s second name conjures the disappointment of Romulus’s slain twin brother, who never founded Rome. For all of the deaths fo...

    Read More »
  • REVERSEBLOG: the reverse shot blog
    0 comments
    tweet
    0

    Best of the Decade #19

    Children of Men didn't really have a "best of the decade" pedigree. An unusually large team of five writers was credited with adapting P.D. James's dystopic novel for the screen, and the ouevre of director Alfonso Cuarón hardly suggested his potential for greatness, despite the reputation for technical inventiveness he had earned with respectable middlebrow fare like Y tu mama tambien, A Little Princess, and Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban. Universal Pictures didn't do any favors to this already inauspicious project, releasing it at the tail end of 2006 without investing in the kind of publicity—a blitz of long-lead press screenings,...

    Read More »
  • REVERSEBLOG: the reverse shot blog
    0 comments
    tweet
    0

    Reverse Shot's Best of the Decade

    .

    Read More »

Recent Posts


  • The NewsroomRecap: 'The Newsroom,' Season 3, Episode ...The Playlist
  • Watch: 'Into the Woods' Featurette with ...Thompson on Hollywood
  • Top Ten Takeaways: Why 'Hunger Games' ...Thompson on Hollywood