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Best Films of 2007
Posted: Tue Jan 01, 2008 5:53 pm
Is it early enough to open this thread? ">
Many said, 2007 was a thin and skinny year in the cinemas, without many surprises and outstanding films. I don't think so. It was a rich and unpredictable year, though Hollywood delivered as many sequels, remakes and other odd stuff.
To supplement the whole thing, you may should add some special experiences, maybe also with old / elder films or certain events if you want to. Also films that deserved a little nomination, at least - if not a place in your selection.
My best cinematic experience 2007 was also a screening of an old favourite, but more about that later.
Okay, until there are a few more comments (I hope the List of Undistributed Films 2007 were not intended to be extended in general - if so, sorry... "> ), I'll post my own list which grew from originally 26 to 29 Films, due to three more late additions. Overall, my sacred Number 1 of 2007 definitely is "The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford" which is, in my nonrelevant opinion, a masterpiece for ages.
THE PRESTIGE (Christopher Nolan / USA) 9/10 (22) *
INVISIBLE WAVES (Pen-Ek Ratanaruang / Thailand/Hongkong/Netherlands) 9/10
LAST DAYS (Gus Van Sant / USA) 10/10
GWOEMUL / THE HOST (Joon-ho Bong / South Korea) 9/10 *
H 2 ODIO / HATE 2 O (Alex Infascelli / Italy) 9/10 (22)
ZODIAC (David Fincher / USA) 9/10 *
TWENTYNINE PALMS (Bruno Dumont / France/USA/Germany) 10/10
DEATH PROOF (Quentin Tarantino / USA) 9/10 *
SAKEBI / RETRIBUTION (Kiyoshi Kurosawa / Japan) 7 8/10
BUG (William Friedkin / USA) 9/10
THE ASSASSINATION OF JESSE JAMES BY THE COWARD ROBERT FORD (Andrew Dominik / USA) 10/10 (25) *
IMPORT/EXPORT (Ulrich Seidl / Austria) 9/10 (22)
FÜR DEN UNBEKANNTEN HUND / FOR THE UNKNOWN DOG (Benjamin Reding, Dominik Reding / Germany) 9/10 (23)
AUF DER ANDEREN SEITE / THE EDGE OF HEAVEN (Fatih Akin / Germany/Turkey/Italy) 10/10 (24)
CHINJEOLHAN GEUMJASSI / SYMPATHY FOR LADY VENGEANCE (Chan-wook Park / South Korea) 9/10 *
EL LABERINTO DEL FAUNO / PAN'S LABYRINTH (Guillermo del Toro / Spain/Mexico/USA) 9/10 *
INLAND EMPIRE (David Lynch / USA/France/Poland) 9/10 *
ZWARTBOEK/ BLACK BOOK (Paul Verhoeven / Netherlands/Belgium/Germany/UK) 8/10 *
BLOOD TEA AND RED STRING (Christiane Cegavske / Canada/USA) 8/10 (21)
EDMOND (Stuart Gordon / USA) 8/10
YELLA (Christian Petzold / Germany) 8/10 (21)
HALLOWEEN (Rob Zombie / USA) 9/10 (22) *
IKLIMLER / CLIMATES (Nuri Bilge Ceylan / Turkey/France) 8/10 (21)
ROMANZO CRIMINALE / CRIME NOVEL (Michele Placido / Italy/France/UK) 8/10 (21)
4 LUNI, 3 SAPTAMANI SI 2 ZILE / 4 MONTHS, 3 WEEKS AND 2 DAYS (Cristian Mungiu / Romania) 8/10 (21) *
DAS SICHTBARE UND DAS UNSICHTBARE / THE VISIBLE AND THE INVISIBLE (Rudolf Thome / Germany) 9/10 (22)
EASTERN PROMISES (David Cronenberg, UK/Canada) 9/10 (22) *
BUONGIORNO, NOTTE / GOOD MORNING, NIGHT (Marco Belocchio / Italy) 9/10 (22)
3:10 TO YUMA (James Mangold / USA) 8/10 (22) *
About A 1 and A 2: The Films on List A 1 are all a bit better and preferable to the films on List A 2 but the difference isnt very large, its just a little accent to make clear, which films were real highlights and which left me impressed but not totally satisfied, or, to express it in another way: The more personal likes.
Unfortunately and for several reasons, there are only very few asian films on my list. I missed almost every important Festival and (almost) all DVD- /TV-Premiers (many interesting foreign and I also mean american films by that - films never reach the cinemas here) in Germany, so Ive just seen a poor amount of new european and asian films, mainly the ones which got a theatrical release over here. Overall, my problem is quite similar to wpqx: I barely have seen too few new films. On the other hand, I was extremely surprised by myself that almost half of my favourites are big budget Productions, mainly supported by Hollywood. I guess, thats never happened to me before with such an overwhelming majority.
I ordered the films by the date of view ( NOT by the personal preference!) and inluded every film released for the first time in Germany in 2007, theatrical and/or on festivals. This way, even films like Twentynine Palms (2003 / April 07), Last days (2005 / January 07) or Good Morning, Night (2003 / June 07) are included due to the fact that they didnt reach the german screens until early 2007. An exception is Alex Infascellis bizarre modern Pop Art-Exercise Hate 2 O which was released in Italy within April straight to the DVD I saw (As far as I know). Im almost a bit embarrassed my list mostly seems to be quite a consensus.
Due to some lazyness, I didnt add a comment on every single film from the two lists as originally intended, if you want to know anything more precise, just ask.
** I introduced the 25-Point-Rating-System in early September, so films Ive seen before kept their 10-Point ratings.
* Watched in a German dubbed version (at least the first time, rewatched some of them within the last months on DVD).
I just had to put "The Edge of Heaven" on the list, even though I've seen it only a few days ago (it was released in early autumn here) and threw "The Visible and the Invisible" back to List A2 and removed "Ex Drummer" completely.
Re: Best Films of 2007
Posted: Tue Jan 01, 2008 6:38 pm
Of course, there were many, many more fine or even great films which shouldnt be left out, though they didnt won a place in my sacred (my list is perhaps already far too extensive) selection. Here are a few of them, this time ordered by ratings and personal preferences -
Remarkable Films, worth to be mentioned (I surely forgot some):
- The Three Burials of Melquiades Estrada (Tommy Lee Jones / USA/France) 9/10 (22)
- Hanage / Steel (Episode from Unholy Women / Takuji Suzuki / Japan) 9/10
- The Bothersome Man (Jens Lien / Iceland/Norway) 8/10 (21) *
- Verfolgt / Hounded (Angelina Maccarone / Germany) - 8/10 (21)
- The Fountain (Darren Aronofsky / USA) 8/10 *
- Lady Chatterley (Pascale Ferran / France/UK) 8/10 (20)
- Takva (zer Kiziltan, Turkey/France) 8/10
- Ekusute / Exte: Hair Extensions (Sion Sono / Japan) 8/10 (20)
- Valerie (Birgit Mller / Germany) 8/10
- Hotel Paradijs (Jan Krger / Short / Germany) 8/10
- A Scanner Darkly (Richard Linklater / USA) - 7/10 (20)
- Loggerheads (Tim Kirkman / USA) 7/10
- Deutschland privat Im Land der bunten Trume / Germany in Private In the land of colourful dreams (Robert van Ackeren / Germany) 7/10
- The Living and the Dead (Simon Rumley / UK) 7/10
- Dnevnoy dozor / Day Watch (Timur Bekmambetov / Russia) 7/10 (19) *
- Apnea (Roberto Dordit / Italy) 7/10 (19)
- Ghost Son (Lamberto Bava / South Africa/Italy/UK/Spain) - 7/10
- Un couple perfait / A perfect couple (Nobuhiro Suwa / France/Japan) 7/10
- Invasion (Oliver Hirschbiegel, James McTeigue / USA) - 7/10 *
- Seung sing / Confession of Pain (Wai-keung Lau, Siu Fai Mak / Hongkong) 7/10
- Nachmittag / Afternoon (Angela Schanelec / Germany) 7/10 (1
- Ha-Buah / The Bubble (Eytan Fox / Israel) 7/10
- Oublier Cheyenne / Looking for Cheyenne (Valrie Minetto / France) 7/10
- Crash Test Dummies (Jrg Kalt / Austria) 6/10
- Nuovomondo / Golden Door (Emanuele Crialese / Italy/France/UK) 6/10
- Evilenko (David Grieco / Italy) 6/10
- Solange du hier bist / While you are here (Stefan Westerwelle / Germany) 6/10 (17)
A little, marginal addition (in Order of my personal dislike...):
Worst / Most annoying Film of 2007:
1. 300 (Zack Snyder / USA) - 1/10 *
2. The Hills have eyes II (Martin Weisz / USA) - 1/10
3. The Texas Chainsaw Massacre: The Beginning (Jonathan Liebesman / USA) - 3/10 *
4. In the Name of the King: Dungeon Siege (Uwe Boll / Germany/Canada/USA) 3/10 8/25 *
5. Seed (Uwe Boll / Canada/Germany) - 5/10
6. Im a cyborg but thats OK (Chan-wook Park / South Korea) - 13/25 5/10
7. Nightmare Detective (Shinya Tsukamoto / Japan) 5/10
In Addition, the seven new films I disliked most in 2007. While Uwe I want to be called Ed Wood II. Bolls ultra-violent and ultra-dumb Gore-Flick Seed was something like a primitive guilty pleasure (I attended the German premier in presence of Mr. Boll himself the man himself is much more entertaining than his films), the most unbearable and annoying cinema experiences of the year both have a lot in common: The shockingly aggressive fascist-show 300 by botcher Zack Snyder and The Hills have eyes (one user wrote on IMDb: I feel dumber for seeing it so do I...) by Martin Weisz (another botcher who fortunately left his home country) are both unbelievable culminations of incredibly stupid, incompetently directed, non-written, bad acted and especially soulless Mainstream-Flicks, made for a braindead audience, probably not older than 14. Two films, less meaningful than a cow singing Auld long syne before here last dawn. The sequel of Marcus Nispels crappy remake of The Texas Chainsaw Massacre is also similar but overall, only ridiculous because of its childish attempt to be more brutal, graphical, cynical and uncompromising than all the other Mainstream-terror films of the last two years. What can be expected from a film who intends to top the infamous Hostel (which was one of the worst films in 2006, imo) Disastrous. Though it probably was the trashiest new film of the year with tons of unintentional humour, Uwe Bolls 60 Million-Blockbuster-Flick In the Name of the King was disastrous as well and more exhausting than anything I watched this year. And finally, after months of waiting, the film which took my trust in Chan-wook Park (whose magnificently fatalistic Sympathy for Lady Vengeance remained on my list nevertheless) away Im a cyborg but thats OK. Since I saw it on the Fantasy Filmfest, Im not so sure about Park any longer maybe, all the critics who call him a pretentious Self-Adulator are quite right. Ill decide what exactly to think of him after his next film. And, in addition, the new work by master filmmaker Shinya Tsukamoto (who I really adore...) was also a huge shock and left A, me and some friends quite reserved. One of Japans most uncompromising, visionary and original directors arrived in mainstream cinema.
What about your cinematic year 2007?
Re: Best Films of 2007
Posted: Tue Jan 01, 2008 8:27 pm
*nerd alert* Ed Wood was a Jr., so Uwe would have to be the III.
Looking at the films on your best list, I haven't even seen that many films from the year, let alone ones that deserve a top ten/twenty placement.
Re: Best Films of 2007
Posted: Tue Jan 01, 2008 11:36 pm
*Nerd alert* Ed Wood was a Jr., so Uwe would have to be the
I for myself guess, Boll could be happy if at least one of his @#%$ Junk-Films were as good as the major works of Ed Wood jr. (Shame over me, I should've remembered it).
Once I read somewhere at the web: "Uwe Boll, Germany's revenge for two lost World Wars". We're not that unforgiving!
And: It's really amazing that I managed to see so many new films as I felt like having no money and time during the whole year. The evil Cinemas took it away! And as I know you're in a comparable situation (with less time), it's certainly understandable and enforced that you couldn't catch more in the theaters.
Will you post the few films you liked?
Just a few notes on the best Cinema-Experiences:
They all took place in Autumn. First, there was the 70mm-Festival in Karlsruhe which gave me the opportunity to see "Ben Hur" on a giant screen in perfect sharpness, bombastic sound and the full aspect ratio (the colours of the print were faded out mostly but we just forgot about that...). I already loved the film before but this time, it was so intense that I cried several times and my breath sometimes stopped. I'll never forget that my whole life, especially because the film has had (and still has!) a certain importance to me. A few hours later, I saw Kubrick's "2001: A Space Odyssey" for the very first time, also on that same screen and breathtakingly sharp. It didn't made me cry but you can probably imagine how much somebody has to be affected by this film if seeing it that way for the first time. This led to a new interest in Kubrick and my intoxicating discovery of "Eyes wide shut" two days later (Thanks so much, A!) took place at the same period when I discovered Douglas Sirk which became one of my favourite Directors in the meantime and earned as much respect from me as no commercial filmmaker did since a long. The Truth remains true, even if it's wearing Kitsch (and does the Kitsch remain Kitsch if there's an existential truth behind it? And isn't the Truth available for everyone if it's wearing Kitsch?). Three weeks later, I travelled to Vienna with two friends. What a beautiful and imposing town. But everything was excelled by my greatest and most impressive cinematic experience of the whole year: A screening of Dario Argento's "Suspiria", one of my all-time favourite films. The cinema was old and charming, the 35mm-print was all-new (!!!) and though this was the 8th time I saw the film, it felt like seeing it for the very first time. Those blazing colours, those incredible forms, the many symbolic details that just got lost on every DVD, just the whole, unique and undescribable spiritual and complex film. Matalo Matango and me were just stoned by that overwhelming experience for hours, days and weeks. Since the visuals didn't overwhelmed me too much when I watched it on DVD the last time, what else could happen while watching it on a big screen in full Technicolor-Glory? Nevertheless, the film grew on a new, unknown level again. It grows and grows and grows. That's what masterpieces should be like.
And a few notes on "surprises": The best things happened when I spontaneously decided to visit at Night Screening at 2:00 in the morning. For the first time, I really got into a David Fincher-Film ("Zodiac"), I saw the first new Hollywood-Film that electrified me totally from head to toe and got an awed "masterpiece" out of my mouth ("The Assassination of Jesse James...") and I learned how to love campy russian Mainstream-Cinema ("Day Watch"). Those spontaneous Night Screenings brought me more joy and surprises than every regular cinema visit this year (and I weren't drunk during any of them!;-). Though I still despise Hollywood predominantly, it surprised me most often and mostly positive in 2007. The most funny screening I attended probably took place at the cinema where I'm working as a projectionist. Watching the German b/w-Trash-Flick "Horrors of the Spider Island" (or, to translate the original title: "A Corpse in the Web") together with A and Matalo Matango caused us tears of laughter. Unintentional humour at its best and most bizarre. This film is so well-behaved and innocent that it's just impossible to take it serious (as a Horror or Adventure Movie).
Re: Best Films of 2007
Posted: Thu Jan 03, 2008 6:02 am
Nice list R6dw6C!
I wrote something up about my Top 10 on the theatrical releases I've seen commercially in Singapore which discounts a lot of these Nov-Dec masterpieces we hear so much about in the US. So it might seem relatively antiquated but I'm going by what's shown in local screens this year. I have a separate list I made for my festival screenings this year which I have unfortunately not fleshed out as well as you have, and I'm sure wpqx's and arsaib's as well.
1. Black Snake Moan
2. The Simpsons Movie
3. Eastern Promises
4. Lars and the Real Girl
8. 13 Tzameti
11. Bridge To Terabithia
13. The King
14. La Vie En Rose
15. Paris, je taime
A significant portion of last years Oscar roster wound up on my personal and heretofore unstated Worst of list (with the sinister Blood Diamond and the manufactured banality of Little Children being particular grievances) and I still fear that 2008s biggest Oscar-baiting prestige film in American Gangster will eventually sink its stained teeth into an undeserving berth. With that confession aside, it does come as no surprise that the films in this years Best of list might not find itself vying for Academy consideration. But then again to be fair, the frontrunners (as well as its dark horses) have not found their way onto our island as of yet or possibly at all. So it goes to say as far as 2007 goes, its not just the smaller indies that rule the roost and Im glad to say that in this years list Ive discovered more than a few gems in some of the years more commercially viable releases that will hopefully enrich you as it did me. The list of my years favourite films is close to my heart and mind, with some aiming to be intellectually stimulating and others continuing to expand the passion conspicuous not just in film but to all of the life that it reflects in some form or other.
And nothing extols the latter more than Craig Brewers audaciously volatile Black Snake Moan, stamping his imprint on provocative filmmaking in the clear skies and sticky grime of his Americana and a genuine exaltation of lifes ability to hurt and destroy but most importantly to heal the deepest of psychic wounds. After his celebrated and equally maligned Hustle & Flow, Brewer proves hes not going softly into the night with an intensely charged piece of Southern Gothic. Matt Groening also proves his own point to detractors with the eagerly awaited The Simpsons Movie, even if Homer refuses to pay to watch the years best comedy, animated or otherwise. Containing the years funniest gag with Barts sly flash of full-frontal nudity and the most memorable use of a spider-pig, its politically aggressive humour is a relieving return to form and offers the sincerest and most heartrending scenes of familial discombobulation when Bart reacts to his perceived lack of paternal affection and Marge questions her marriage to Homer.
David Cronenberg has no such quotidian preoccupations with the traditional family units (which was already evinced in his History of Violence) in his masterful Eastern Promises where he presents London as a teeming hive of ethnic and ethical tensions fueled by the cultural isolation of its displaced immigrants. His typically exquisite composition of light and gloom seeping into souls is represented by an utterly fascinating performance by Viggo Mortensen as he peers into the citys heart of darkness. With that we move swiftly on to a towns heart of goodness in Craig Gillespies Lars and the Real Girl, a modern fable that either takes to heart our rampant consumerism or expresses a lost idealism in an increasingly cynical world. Id like to think that this film understands deeply and with love and sadness, the fundamental fragilities that shape us. In a landscape of films that advocate conflict, it is unusual to witness this film, which actually wants its characters to get along and be happy.
In a curious intimation of the previous two films mentioned, Bill Guttentag and Bill Sturmans documentary Nanking reminds us of humanitys capacity for both inexplicable evil and profound goodness. The shared human consciousness between the heroic foreigners and ravaged citizenry during the Rape of Nanking remains a small consolation in view of one of humanitys worst moments. The personification of evil is also considered in the microcosm of a serial killer and spate of obsessions that drive the men who hunt him in David Finchers Zodiac. Subtextual guilt-trips and a spectacularly reeling anticlimax get under skins and fester, both in clear and thoughtful engagement with his most intensive work to date since the fervour that surrounded and sustained Se7en.
Satoshi Kons subliminally sublime Paprika also festers under our skins and psyches as it leads us down a rabbit hole where dreams are cinema, surfaces are liquid and the Internet plugs into you instead. Dynamic and brimming with metaphorical ideas and conceptual collisions predicated on cinemas own ability to shape and deconstruct our purview. The despairing nightmare apparent in Kons deepest residues is amplified in Gela Babluanis Kafkaesque menace, 13 Tzameti. Its tonally confident monochromatic canvas recalls an intensely grim, bleak nightmare that plasters over the hyper-realism of its brutality, a slow burn allegory for the fatalism infecting our existential crises and the criminality forced upon Frances migr populace for the enjoyment of an upper class.
Rounding off the list are two films sensitively tuned to the best of feminine wavelengths that navigate the lives of women and the family they love when all is said and done. Pedro Almodvars gentle homecoming in Volver deals with a spate of deaths comically, reminds us of the tenuous ties that are ignored and the happiness discovered at its end all to the tune of Penelope Cruzs show stopping number that rightfully grabbed her an Oscar nomination for Best Actress this year. The other film dealt with death most tragically when Adrienne Shelley who wrote, directed and performed in the delightfully exuberant Waitress passed away shortly before the film was released. The wit and charm surging through Shelleys script is bolstered by chemistry of both Keri Russell and Nathan Fillion, and both are occupants of Shelleys searing emotional truths and wisdoms. Yes indeed, the sisters are doing it for themselves.
Re: Best Films of 2007
Posted: Thu Jan 03, 2008 6:05 am
Overseas, festivals and DVDs
1. Year of the Dog
2. Secret Sunshine
3. Black Book
7. Rescue Dawn
8. The Band's Visit
9. Ad Lib Night
12. God Grew Tired of Us: The Story of Lost Boys of Sudan
13. After the Wedding
15. Jonestown: The Life and Death of Peoples Temple
I threw in a couple of documentaries that I've seen that I reacted strongly to because I feel that a personal list should include a somewhat eclectic choice of genres.
Re: Best Films of 2007
Posted: Thu Jan 03, 2008 6:47 am
I must say I was surprised by your top two, and an interesting defense. Haven't seen Black Snake Moan and had no interest in it when it was released, but perhaps I should hunt it out. It lost me with "from the people who brought you Snakes on a Plane"
Re: Best Films of 2007
Posted: Fri Jan 04, 2008 2:42 pm
It's nice reading all your stuff.
Though I'm stuck in Slovenia for a few more days, without any real internet access, I have more or less finalized my lists. It will probably just take a couple of days, before I'll be able to post anything here.
2007 has in my opinion been a weak year for movies - maybe the weakest I have ever witnessed. But that also has to do with the fact that more and more films I desperately want to see don't get distributed in German theaters anymore, and as I don't even own a TV set, I cannot catch up with national production on TV. This means, as the German "expert by default" (to use one of wpqx's wonderful expressions ) on this board, I again have not really seen that much German films this year. After telling all of you for the past three years that Germany was the most exciting film country in the world, my enthusiasm has somewhat come to a halt. R6dw6C has almost convinced me that the "Berliner Schule" (a term which I originally despised, but which I have since embraced) is a big pretentious hoax, and I haven't seen many new films that have really impressed me in the past two years. Maybe I should return to my initial discovery that we have an incredible number of inividual talents here in Germany, which cannot and probably also should not be connected under any term or in any movement. If anything, there is always a huge tendency to copy a successful formula from other filmmakers, be it mainstream or "arthouse" cinema. It is not necesssarily a good thing, if you discover traits of the great Andreas Dresen in every second German art-film. Of course, giants throw their shadow, but a real talent makes something uniquely his or her own out of that. Although most new German films tend to deal with personal matters, only a few of those tend to overcome the many trappings that lie in front of them. TV-style is another negative influence in a number of films. Although this can be put to good use (when i recently saw the first minutes of Kiyoshi Kurosawa's made-for-TV drama "Seance" (2000), I was amazed how interestingly one could use a low-budget "TV style" to a movie's advantage), German films tend to have a stale taste of predetermined stylistics. I think there wasn't a single German film I have seen this year that has completely been able to avoid this. Of course I haven't seen a lot of new productions, and there may be some surprises waiting for me (I am especially thinking of Heinz Emigholz' last film Schindler's Haeuser, which I missed at the Berlinale).
But to speak of international cinema: there hasn't been a single new film this year (with the possible exception of Pascale Ferran's Lady Chatterley) that has been able to impress me as much as some old stuff or re-watches of my favorites. during the whole year, none of the new releases has managed to get a rating above 8/10, and although I have reconsidered what i now call my favorite films, I am still highly in doubt if any film on my Top 10 list which I will publish here, actually deserves to be called a favorite. Maybe my standards have been lowered too much in the course of too many disappointments...
However, I will ponder this later, and only time (and rewatches under good conditions) can show if a film makes a lasting impression.
Nevertheless, the year was full of cinematic disappointments, and my (alternate) Top 10 are not free of them.
Re: Best Films of 2007
Posted: Wed Jan 09, 2008 5:36 am
Still haven't finished my Top Ten, so I did something else instead. I compiled a list of my favorite films which I discovered for the first time in 2007. I tried to arrange them in order of preference, though it was difficult work. The final decision was made after considering how much pleasure and personal satisfaction the individual screening gave me.
So here are the old new films I enjoyed the most. Hope this will serve as an inspiration and a reminder to check out obscure stuff. Usually, it's worth it.
1. The Man Who Left His Will on Film (Nagisa Oshima / Japan / 1970) - Cinema
2. Lived Once a Song-Thrush (Otar Iosseliani / Soviet Union / 1970) - Cinema
3. Chronicle of a Summer (Jean Rouch, Edgar Morin / France / 1962) - Cinema
4. Heaven's Gate (Michael Cimino / USA / 1980)
5. Vixen! (Russ Meyer / USA / 1968 )
6. Scattered Clouds (Mikio Naruse / Japan / 1967) - Cinema
7. The Apple (Samira Makhmalbaf / Iran, France / 1998 ) - Cinema
8. Dawn of the Dead (George A. Romero / USA / 1976) - Cinema
9. Mamma Roma (Pier Paolo Pasolini / Italy / 1962) - Cinema
10. Tarzan, the Ape Man (John Derek / USA / 1981) - Cinema
11. The Innocents (Jack Clayton / UK / 1961)
12. Suspiria (Dario Argento / Italy / 1977) - Cinema
13. Carlito's Way (Brian De Palma / USA / 1993)
14. Two-Lane Blacktop (Monte Hellman / USA / 1970)
15. A Touch of Zen (King Hu / Taiwan / 1969)
16. Tokyo Eyes (Jean-Pierre Limosin / Japan, France / 1997) - Cinema
17. Blackboards (Samira Makhmalbaf / Iran, France / 2000) - Cinema
18. The Fall of the House of Usher (Jean Epstein / France / 1928 ) - Cinema
19. Farewell (Egon Guenther / East Germany / 1968 ) - Cinema
20. One Armed Boxer (Wang Yu / Taiwan, Hong Kong / 1971)
21. Burst City (Sogo Ishii / Japan / 1982)
22. Assunta Spina (Francesca Bertini, Gustavo Serena / Italy / 1914)
23. Family Nest (Béla Tarr / Hungary / 1977) - Cinema
24. Bullitt (Peter Yates / USA / 1968 )
25. Naples... and nothing else (Eugenio Perego / Italy / 1928 ) - Cinema
26. Female Prisoner #701: Scorpion (Shunya Ito / Japan / 1972)
27. Deep Red (Dario Argento / Italy / 1975)
28. The Age of the Earth (Glauber Rocha / Brazil / 1980) - Cinema
29. Peeping Tom (Michael Powell / UK / 1960)
30. Full Contact (Ringo Lam / Hong Kong / 1992)
31. Taipei Story (Edward Yang / Taiwan / 1985) - Cinema
32. Gods of the Plague (R.W. Fassbinder / West Germany / 1969) - Cinema
33. Los perros hambrientos (Luis Figueroa / Peru / 1976)
34. Fontane - Effi Briest (R. W. Fassbinder / West Germany / 1974) - Cinema
35. Almost Human (Umberto Lenzi / Italy / 1974)
36. Harold Stevenson No.1 and No.2 (Danny Williams / USA / 1965) - Cinema
37. Nightmares come at Night (Jess Franco / Belgium, Liechtenstein / 1970)
38. Where the Sidewalk Ends (Otto Preminger / USA / 1950)
39. Have Sword, Will Travel (Chang Cheh / Hong Kong / 1969)
40. Uncle Tom's Cabin (Gza von Radvnyi / West Germany / 1965) - Cinema
41. The Castle of Cagliostro (Hayao Miyazaki / Japan / 1979)
42. Stein (Egon Guenther / East Germany / 1990)
43. Rio Bravo (Howard Hawks / USA / 1959) - Cinema
44. The Marriage of Maria Braun (R.W. Fassbinder / Germany / 1979) - Cinema
45. Behind Locked Doors (Budd Boetticher / USA / 1948 )
46. The Image (Radley Metzger / USA / 1975)
47. Horrors of Spider Island (Fritz Boettger / West Germany / 1960) -Cinema
48. Tarkan versus the Vikings (Mehmet Aslan / Turkey / 1971)
49. The Widow of Saint-Pierre (Patrice Leconte / France / 2000) - Cinema
50. The Sob (Atif Yilmaz / Turkey / 1953)
51. The Social Secretary (John Emerson / USA / 1916) - Cinema
52. Nana (Jean Renoir / France / 1926) - Cinema
53. Something New (Nell Shipman, Bert Van Tuyle / USA / 1920) - Cinema
54. Geissel des Fleisches (Eddy Saller / Austria / 1965) - Cinema
55. Gone in 60 Seconds (H.B.Halicki / USA / 1974) - Cinema
And I should mention that the first 30 minutes of Pier Paolo Pasolini's The Gospel According to St. Matthew were filmmaking at its best. If only the rest of the film had been like this...
2007 was an interesting year for discoveries, but definitely one of the weakest since I've been watching films. None of the films on the list achieved a higher rating than 9/10, and none of them were even close to a 90/100 rating. I think the highest was Samira Makhmalbaf's first feature with 83, followed by Oshima's film with 80. Compared to some rewatches of past favorites, this was quite disappointing, though many of the films listed here were still better than most new releases I saw.
EDIT: I forgot to include The Escape on the Fast Freight (J.P. McGowan / USA / 1915), a film I enjoyed very much, and although I rated it extremely poor I should have probably also included East is East (Henry Edwards / UK / 1916), which gave me a lot of joy. I should also mention that the quality of the print / DVD, projection, and musical accompaniment, naturally influenced my evaluation and enjoyment of the various films to a large degree. It is a huge difference if you are standing in front of an original Van Gogh, or merely looking at a picture in a book. Some of the prints I saw were of pristine quality. If such a thing is possible, they seemed even clearer and sharper than most new prints of recent films I saw (for example the Oshima, Iosseliani, Naruse, Renoir, or Williams). Others were a bit damaged, or shown in the wrong format, sometimes even with dubbing or a lame piano score. The worst example on the list is "The Sob" by Atif Yilmaz. The DVD-R was in horrible quality, without subtitles, and accompanied by a bad live translator. Still, sometimes this is the only possible way to see a certain film, and I am grateful for the opportunity to have seen it. Yet, nothing can top the experience of seeing a film as it was meant to be. In excellent quality on a huge screen.
Re: Best Films of 2007
Posted: Wed Jan 09, 2008 10:51 pm
Wow, you two got interesting / nice lists, I'll try to post something here within the next days but I'm just too busy at the moment. If I would be able to, a List of new discoveries could be another option but I just discovered to many new things this year, so it's up to you all...
Glad to hear about your change of mind about the "Berliner Schule", A - finally you seem to have got enough of statically photographed alienation in abominable flats. We should talk about it this weekend...