I’m Making A List And Checking It Twice: Towards a List of My Favorite Movies of the Decade.

Sep 06 2009 Published by Benito Vergara under Uncategorized

Laiya, Batangas, August 2009.

Is it time for a Best Films of the 2000s list yet? (Because if not, I’ll be reposting this at the end of 2010, and removing the two films below from 2000.)

The list will probably undergo numerous revisions — obviously because the films from the second half of the decade will get short shrift, and I’ve probably forgotten a title or two, plus I can’t make up my mind about Mysterious Object at Noon or Linda Linda Linda just yet, and I’ll probably sneak in a Favorite Horror Movies sub-list — but in any case, here’s my list, in alphabetical order:

- Battle Royale (Kinji Fukasaku, 2000)
- The Dark Knight (Christopher Nolan, 2008)
- Evolution of a Filipino Family (Lav Diaz, 2004)
- In the Mood for Love (Wong Kar-wai, 2000)
- The Lord of the Rings (Peter Jackson, 2001-2003)
- Mulholland Dr. (David Lynch, 2001)
- The New World (Terrence Malick, 2005)

I’m a little wary of including anything I haven’t seen at least twice, but Diaz stays up there. (Oh, what I’d do for a second viewing…)

I was also surprised to find that the other movies that immediately came to mind — Goodbye, South, Goodbye; Irma Vep; Magnolia; Dead Man; Satantango; Taste of Cherry; The Matrix; and A Brighter Summer Day (only seen once) — were all from the previous decade! Nuts. (But hey, along with Trust, Life Is Sweet and Reservoir Dogs, that’s a mighty fine Best Films of the Nineties list right there.)

Anyone else out there making lists yet?

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David Lynch, “Lost Highway” (1997).

Aug 17 2008 Published by Benito Vergara under review

David Lynch’s latest mindscramble of a movie, Lost Highway, starts off quite unlike the rest of the film: there’s a jittery shot of headlights zooming into the darkness of a two-lane blacktop, while an equally twitchy jungle-ified David Bowie sings on the soundtrack. Then the film switches into negative gear for its brilliant first half, an exploration of light and shadow and the chill of domesticity. Bill Pullman is the musician, Patricia Arquette is his wife, and someone’s been inside their house; at least the videotapes, which keep popping up on their doorstep every morning with the paper, say so. But it’s the visual and aural style that’s the showcase here: a barely audible hum fills the gaping silences (there’s hardly any dialogue), so much that a whisper sounds like a scream. The hallway in the couple’s Southern California home is a literal black hole, absent of light, into which Pullman disappears. (And you thought Seven was barely lit.) Everything, including their sex, is performed in this 2001-like somnolent state — a perfect metaphor for the sleepwalking in their relationship.

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