100 Greatest Films of the 21st Century

The editors of BBC Culture had commissioned film critics all over the world to arrive at this list, polling “every continent except Antarctica.”  They received responses from 177 film critics. The list was published yesterday.

Sounds like a formidable task, albeit in actuality, the critics only had to look at 17 years of cinematic works (including the year 2000). Nevertheless, the titles are self evident of the positive effects of globalization, for the critics’ choices are markedly diverse.

You can check out the whole list here. I’ll just excerpt the top 50. Here, you can find directors from Africa, Asia, Australia, the Middle East, Europe, North America, South America. What a fantastic representation. I’ve no apology for using the #2 film image here instead of the top one; with Wong Kar-wai’s “In The Mood for Love”, I’m totally partial and very glad it reached this spot.

in-the-mood-for-love

No matter how you look at it, don’t get blown away by blockbuster mega productions. The independent cinema still remains the imaginary window to look into ourselves as well as out to the world, expanding our point of view with old tales to current issues.

50. The Assassin (Hou Hsiao-hsien, 2015)
49. Goodbye to Language (Jean-Luc Godard, 2014)
48. Brooklyn (John Crowley, 2015)
47. Leviathan (Andrey Zvyagintsev, 2014)
46. Certified Copy (Abbas Kiarostami, 2010)
45. Blue Is the Warmest Color (Abdellatif Kechiche, 2013)
44. 12 Years a Slave (Steve McQueen, 2013)
43. Melancholia (Lars von Trier, 2011)
42. Amour (Michael Haneke, 2012)
41. Inside Out (Pete Docter, 2015)
40. Brokeback Mountain (Ang Lee, 2005)
39. The New World (Terrence Malick, 2005)
38. City of God (Fernando Meirelles and Kátia Lund, 2002)
37. Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past Lives (Apichatpong Weerasethakul, 2010)
36. Timbuktu (Abderrahmane Sissako, 2014)
35. Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon (Ang Lee, 2000)
34. Son of Saul (László Nemes, 2015)
33. The Dark Knight (Christopher Nolan, 2008)
32. The Lives of Others (Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck, 2006)
31. Margaret (Kenneth Lonergan, 2011)
30. Oldboy (Park Chan-wook, 2003)
29. WALL-E (Andrew Stanton, 2008)
28. Talk to Her (Pedro Almodóvar, 2002)
27. The Social Network (David Fincher, 2010)
26. 25th Hour (Spike Lee, 2002)
25. Memento (Christopher Nolan, 2000)
24. The Master (Paul Thomas Anderson, 2012)
23. Caché (Michael Haneke, 2005)
22. Lost in Translation (Sofia Coppola, 2003)
21. The Grand Budapest Hotel (Wes Anderson, 2014)
20. Synecdoche, New York (Charlie Kaufman, 2008)
19. Mad Max: Fury Road (George Miller, 2015)
18. The White Ribbon (Michael Haneke, 2009)
17. Pan’s Labyrinth (Guillermo Del Toro, 2006)
16. Holy Motors (Leos Carax, 2012)
15. 4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days (Cristian Mungiu, 2007)
14. The Act of Killing (Joshua Oppenheimer, 2012)
13. Children of Men (Alfonso Cuarón, 2006)
12. Zodiac (David Fincher, 2007)
11. Inside Llewyn Davis (Joel and Ethan Coen, 2013)
10. No Country for Old Men (Joel and Ethan Coen, 2007)
9. A Separation (Asghar Farhadi, 2011)
8. Yi Yi: A One and a Two (Edward Yang, 2000)
7. The Tree of Life (Terrence Malick, 2011)
6. Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind (Michel Gondry, 2004)
5. Boyhood (Richard Linklater, 2014)
4. Spirited Away (Hayao Miyazaki, 2001)
3. There Will Be Blood (Paul Thomas Anderson, 2007)
2. In the Mood for Love (Wong Kar-wai, 2000)
1. Mulholland Drive (David Lynch, 2001)

Which ones have you seen? What do you think of the list? Mulholland Drive #1? You might ask.

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Click on the link in the title to read Arti’s review.

Jane Making The List of Best Movies Ever Made

With January to April being Jane Austen Season on PBS where The Complete Jane Austen is being aired on Masterpiece, it’s just refreshing to know that three Austen movies made it to the list of 1,000 Best Movies mentioned in my last post. I’m sure Janeites do not need anybody’s approval, but it’s good to have it just the same.

Again, here’s the link to New York Times’ The Best 1,000 Movies Ever Made. It should be noted that the list is based on the second edition of the book The New York Times Guide to the Best 1,000 Movies Ever Made which was published in 2004. The New York Times on-line edition still have the icon and link for readers to click even as recent as March 3, 2008, apparently they have not updated the list since the publication of the book.

The following are the three Jane Austen movie adaptations that made the list.

Persuasion (1995)Persuasion (1995) with Amanda Root as Anne Elliot and Ciaran Hinds as Captain Wentworth. Here’s a little excerpt from the NY Times:

Of course, Austen’s protagonists are never dumb, but Anne, being somewhat older, is also a good deal wiser, and the characters around her accordingly take on greater dimension and subtlety. Naturally, this being an Austen story, all ends well, but the path is somewhat less straightforward than in other films adapted from her work.

*****

Pride and Prejudice 1940

Pride and Prejudice (1940) with Greer Garson as Elizabeth Bennet and Laurence Olivier as Mr. Darcy. The New York Times had this tidbit about the classic adaptation:

Though Austen’s novel was set in 1813, the year of its publication, the film version takes place in 1835, reportedly so as to take advantage of the more attractive costume designs of that period.

*****

Sense and Sensibility (1995)

Sense and Sensibility (1995) with Emma Thompson, Kate Winslet, Hugh Grant and Alan Rickman. New York Times critic Janet Maslin summed it up:

We need no further proof that this material is ageless.

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It’s interesting to note that a modern version of Emma also gets a nod from the critics. Thus begins the review of Clueless (1995) on the NY Times:

“Jane Austen might never have imagined that her 1816 novel Emma could be turned into a fresh and satirical look at ultra-rich teenagers in a Beverly Hills high school.”

              Clueless (1995)

Jane Austen’s novels are indeed timeless.

New York Times: Best 1,000 Movies Ever Made

Here’s the link to the list of 1,000 Best Movies Ever Made according to New York Times movie critics. The list is based on the book The New York Times Guide to the Best 1,000 Movies Ever Made, second edition, published 2004.

Do you find your favorites here? If not, which movies do you think should be on the list? Which should not be? A list of 1,000 movies spanning almost a century, you might think there should be a lot of choices, right?

My view:

  • I agree maybe Bambi (1942) should be there, but no Out of Africa (1985) or Shawshank Redemption (1994)?
  • Ok, so Bull Durham (1988 ) is in, but where are Field of Dreams (1989) and Dances With Wolves (1990)?
  • I regret to see The Last Temptation of Christ (1988 ) is on the list but not The Passion of the Christ (2004).
  • So they have The Pianist (2002) but ignore Sophie’s Choice (1982) and Life is Beautiful (1997).
  • I see that Chicken Run (2000) gets to rub shoulders with Ben-Hur (1959)….ookay….and, if Working Girl (1988 ) can get a nod, then where’s my Bridget Jones’ Diary?

… and so on and so forth…

Your view?