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Thread: BEST MOVIES OF 2021 (Lists)

  1. #16
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    P.s. I'm not finding theatrical French releases on AlloCiné going back that far. His 2008 PASSION was released in France, but in 2019. They likely have had releases in other forms of Hamaguchi earlier though.

    Criterion in their 2021 Critics' Picks column by David Hudson calls this "Ryusuke Hamaguchi’s Amazing Year."

  2. #17
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    My current year's end watch list.

    Seeing Sorrentino's THE HAND OF GOD changed everything. It's my favorite of his films and it has to take a top, maybe the top, position on my 2021 best list, so ignore the earlier ones.

    Here are important 2021 releases I still want to see. So far four of the nine are online or soon will be:

    Annette (Leos Carax) - Amazon Prime
    Benedetta (Paul Verhoeven)
    Cmon Cmon (Mike Mills) - iTunes
    Don't Look Up (Adam McKay) - Netflix
    Drive My Car (Ryunsuke Hamaguchi)
    Licorice Pizza (Paul Thomas Anderson)
    The Lost Daughter (Maggie Gyllenhaal) - Netflix Dec. 31
    Memoria (Apichatpong Weeresethakul)
    The Tragedy of Macbeth (Joel Coen) - Apple TV+ Jan. 14
    West Side Story (Steven Spielberg)
    Last edited by Chris Knipp; 01-07-2022 at 12:20 AM.

  3. #18
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    The best 2021 release I have seen so far is a documentary series directed (co-written, co-produced) by Raoul Peck and available on HBO. The last time I was so enthralled by a television series was in 2017 (Twin Peaks by David Lynch). The last documentary that impressed me as much was also directed by the Haiti-born Peck (I am Not Your Negro in 2018) but it is more specific and less ambitious than this new one. I have no doubt that the well-deserved reception to this film resulted in HBO making such a huge commitment: it's over four hours and "looks expensive" (detailed period recreations, for example). The title of the series alludes to Joseph Conrad's "Heart of Darkness" and provides a sort of nutshell explanation of Western history in the past 5 or 6 centuries:
    Exterminate All the Brutes.
    The four episodes are titled:
    1)The Disturbing Confidence of Ignorance
    2)Who the fuck is Columbus?
    3)Killing at a Distance or... How I Thoroughly Enjoyed the Outing
    4)The Bright Colors of Facism
    Last edited by oscar jubis; 01-01-2022 at 06:48 PM.

  4. #19
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    Thanks for the information. I had not heard of t this HBO series. It sounds brilliant and devastating - it's been heralded as a masterpiece by many critics - and I'm sure could well qualify as Best Internationally-Produced Documentary Mini-Series. You don't mention, but the theme is that all modern white conquests have involved wiping out the locals, campaigns of genocide. A factoid Peck includes that will shock many, though it's not new, is that the Nazis took the killing off of Native Americans as a model for their attempted extermination of the Jews.

    This thread hasn't gotten into TV or miniseries productions at all; it's focused exclusively on feature films. "Best 2021 release" is a rather loose category. "Best TV series (or mini-series) of 2021" would go into a different thread, except that Filmleaf is a site about film, not TV.
    Last edited by Chris Knipp; 01-02-2022 at 09:34 AM.

  5. #20
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    TONI SERVILLO, FILIPPO SCOTTI IN THE HAND OF GOD

    My updated top ten list:

    THE HAND OF GOD (Sorrentino)
    THE FRENCH DISPATCH (Anderson)
    THE CARD COUNTER (Schrader)
    KING RICHARD (Green)
    THE SOUVENIR: PART II (Hogg)
    ABOUT ENDLESSNESS (Andersson)
    UNDINE (Petzold)
    SPENCER (Larraín)
    THE DIG (Stone)
    WIFE OF A SPY (Kurosawa)

    I took out THE DISCIPLE and BEGINNING because I saw them last year in the virtual NYFF. This is also true of UNDINE but I have a soft spot for Christian Petzold. I'm less excited about the ones at the end of the list, but that's natural, isn't it?
    I actually was a little disappointed by THE SOUVENIR: PART II, but I hugely enjoyed and admired PART I and the good feeling flows over. Some of these mattered to me less than others, but all I think are good. I've reviewed them all.
    Last edited by Chris Knipp; 01-16-2022 at 01:36 AM.

  6. #21
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    RENATE REINSVE, ANDERS DANIELSEN LIE IN THE WORST PERSON IN THE WORLD


    I've updated 2021 top ten list again:

    THE HAND OF GOD (Sorrentino)
    THE FRENCH DISPATCH (Anderson)
    THE WORST PERSON IN THE WORLD (Trier)
    THE CARD COUNTER (Schrader)
    KING RICHARD (Green)
    THE SOUVENIR: PART II (Hogg)
    UNDINE (Petzold)
    SPENCER (Larraín)
    THE DIG (Stone)
    WIFE OF A SPY (Kurosawa)

    I took out THE DISCIPLE and BEGINNING because I saw them last year in the virtual NYFF. This is also true of UNDINE but I have a soft spot for Christian Petzold. I'm less excited about the ones at the end of the list, but that's natural, isn't it?
    I actually was a little disappointed by THE SOUVENIR: PART II, but I hugely enjoyed and admired PART I and the good feeling flows over. I'df like to rewatch them. Some of these mattered to me less than others, but all I think are good. I've reviewed them all.

    Jan. 15, 2022.

    I've now replaced ABOUT ENDLESSNESS (Andersson), which debuted in 2019 and showed here last Aprill, with Joachim Ttier's THE WORST PERSON IN THE WORLD, which I just saw the other day and loved. It debuted in July 2021 at Cannes and opens here Feb. 4. It is also a Best International Feature finalist that Variety listed two days ago as the top ranking of the 15 finalists. I'm holding my review for the US theatrical release date though. It seems Kristen Stewart has been "snubbed" in favor of Nicole Kidman for Best Actress; this commits me more strongly to SPENCER. Kidman deserves an Oscar for career achievement but BEING THE RICARDOS is a dull misfire and SPENCER a highly original picture.

    NEON is a distributor that has made it onto my radar lately, with two Best International Feature contenders for 2022, FLEE and THE WORST PERSON IN THE WORLD, plus SPENCER.
    Last edited by Chris Knipp; 01-16-2022 at 01:27 AM.

  7. #22
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    A compendium of year-end lists

    CAHIERS DU CINÉMA: 10 Best Flms of 2021
    1 First Cow
    Kelly Reichardt

    2 Annette
    Leos Carax

    3 Memoria
    Apichatpong Weerasethakul

    4 Drive My Car
    Ryűsuke Hamaguchi

    5 France
    Bruno Dumont

    6 The French Dispatch
    wes anderson

    7 All Hands on Deck
    Guillaume Brac

    8 The Girl and the Spider
    Ramon Zürcher and Silvan Zürcher

    9 The Card Counter
    Paul Schrader

    10 Benedetta
    Paul Verhoeven
    Last edited by Chris Knipp; 01-17-2022 at 05:35 PM.

  8. #23
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    The add-ons continue.

    I would add to my runner's up list Michel Franco's SUNDOWN, even though Anthony Lane recently said it "lacks the courage of its despair" (the concluding "explanation" for Tim Roth's strange behavior is indeed too easy). Not a great movie but a memorable performance by Tim Roth and a movie that lingers in my mind. I remain glad that THE WORST PERSON IN THE WORLD is belatedly up there on my list. I like that Paul Thomas Anderson is quoted (where?) as saying "THE WORST PERSON IN THE WORLD is the best movie in the world." I'm more aware than ever this year that you can't make a Best List till you've seen all the year's good movies, and that may take a long time. You're right about that, Oscar.
    Last edited by Chris Knipp; 02-16-2022 at 07:59 PM.

  9. #24
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    From the SF IndieFest (Feb. 3-13, 2022): Paul Owens' LANDLOCKED


    MASON OWENS IN LANDLOCKED

    An ingenious DIY found footage/time travel movie

    Watch the film HERE

    I did not cover this festival but was kindly sent some screeners, and came across this title by accident and was intrigued. Using real family home movies and members of his own family as actors, Owens has fashioned a subtle genre-blending found footage/scifi/horror film that's intricate and subtle. It reminded me of Shane Carruth's Primer (2004), which considering that film's reputation is pretty high praise. Likewise Landlocked is an example of how a no-budget DIY movie can be more complex and real, more peculiar and ingenious, than a commercial one. (Four Owens family members, including the director and his father, make up the cast; Paul wrote, directed, shot, and edited the film himself.)

    The premise: Owens pčre has arranged that immediately after his death the family house will be demolished. Younger sibling Mason Owens goes to his now largely empty childhood home to explore. After another brother turns up and points out a hidden closet, he finds a big old video camera that turns out to have magical properties for delving back into the past. Mason becomes obsessed.

    Owens worked on the camera/technical crew of Lee Daniels' 2005 Shadowboxer and his Precious (NYFF 2009) He also was a writer and director of the five-hour 2012 TV series about video game development, "Amnesia Fortnight."

    I wanted to post not an "external review" on IMDb but rather - it seemed more appropriate - a "User Review," a category for which I've been listed as a "prolific" reviewer from times past, but I couldn't figure out how to add one for this film where there are so far none. There are some External Reviews, several very enthusiastic.
    Last edited by Chris Knipp; 02-28-2022 at 02:34 PM.

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