Don’t stop me now! I’m having such a good time, I’m having a ball…
**Note: This post is still in progress
Batman Begins, Dir. Christopher Nolan
The Brothers Grimm, Dir. Terry Gilliam
Capote, Bennett Miller
Constantine, Dir. Francis Lawrence
A History of Violence, Dir. David Cronenberg
King Kong, Dir. Peter Jackson
V for Vendetta, Dir. James McTeigue
Grizzly Man, Dir. Werner Herzog — A singularly powerful documentary about hubris, innocence, and the relationship between humans and nature.
My Favorite Film of 2005
Brokeback Mountain, Dir. Ang Lee — One of the most beautiful films ever made, with Heath Ledger and Jake Gyllenhaal both projecting intense vulnerability and strength.
Blood Diamond, Dir. Edward Zwick
The Departed, Dir. Martin Scorsese
The Devil Wears Prada, Dir. David Frankel
The Host, Joon-ho Bong
The Lives of Others, Dir. Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck
Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest, Dir. Gore Verbinski
Pan’s Labyrinth, Dir. Guillermo del Toro
The Prestige, Dir. Christopher Nolan
Silent Hill, Dir. Christophe Gans
Slither, Dir. James Gunn — A deliciously dark horror-comedy with top-notch performances, hideous makeup, and an appropriately disgusting monster. Not quite as good as John Carpenter’s The Thing, but certainly in the same ballpark.
My Favorite Film of 2006
Children of Men, Dir. Alfonso Cuaron — A brilliant dystopian vision with magnetic performances and outstanding camerawork.
The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford, Dir. Andrew Dominik
Atonement, Dir. Joe Wright
Enchanted, Dir. Kevin Lima
Gone Baby Gone, Dir. Ben Affleck
Grindhouse, Dir. Robert Rodriguez and Quentin Tarantino
Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, Dir. David Yates
Hot Fuzz, Dir. Edgar Wright
Persepolis, Dir. Marjane Satrapi and Vincent Paronnaud
Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End, Dir. Gore Verbinski
The Savages, Dir. Tamara Jenkins
Stardust, Matthew Vaughan
There Will be Blood, Dir. Paul Thomas Anderson
Zodiac, Dir. David Fincher — Fincher’s best film is one about a subject he knows well: obsession. Jake Gyllenhaal is perfect as a reporter doggedly trying to solve an unsolvable case by unmasking the Zodiac Killer. Beautiful and creepy, with a few scenes of violence and tension that stick with you long after the final frame.
My Favorite Film of 2007
No Country for Old Men, Dir. Joel Coen and Ethan Coen — 2007, let it be said, is a stacked year. I absolutely adore several other films from this year, including Enchanted, Stardust, Grindhouse, Hot Fuzz, and The Assassination of Jesse James; also, the fifth Harry Potter is in a dead-heat for my favorite in the series with Azkaban. But even in such a wonderful year for film, No Country wins it handily. Pitch-black comedy; clutch-your-armrest suspense; shocking violence: this one has it all. One of the Coen Bro’s best movies, a dark exploration of violence that forgoes catharsis for something altogether more unnerving and, ultimately, thought-provoking.