My apologies to the millions of you that look to this blog for your yearly re-cap of what was great in music, film, tv and books. I only saw a handful of movies this year so the list is a little abbreviated. While it doesn’t equal the total of years past here are my favorites I did see. Enjoy.
1) To The Wonder- (Terence Malick)
Far and away the world’s most beautiful filmmaker. His latest is another breathtaking display of visual virtuoso that is untouched in the other filmmaker’s of today. What Terence Malick does with a camera should be taught in every film school forever. And his story telling is just as amazing. I thought ‘The Tree of Life’ was one of the most poetic films I’ve seen in my life, this is better.
2) Before Midnight (Richard Linklater)
Richard Linklater, Ethan Hawke and Julie Delpy return with the 3rd and last installment of arguably one of the greatest trilogies of the past 50 years. The most heartbreaking and disturbing, this is a film that will resonate with every viewer that has watched the 2 of them grow these past 27 years. This is outstanding filmmaking.
3) Blue Jasmine- (Woody Allen)
Those of you that know me are familiar with my love for Woody Allen films. This one takes us to San Francisco following Jasmine who is trying to pick up the pieces to her life after her swindling husband lands himself in jail. She hooks up with her sister, Ginger and tries to put things together after her life of incredible privilege goes to hell. As with every Woody Allen film, the actors are first-rate and this one especially showcases the talents of Cate Blanchett. Already one of the best actresses of her time, this is her best film to date. And further proof that there is no better writer for women than Woody Allen.
4) The Bling Ring (Sophia Coppola)
Very few filmmakers could take the true life tale of privileged kids stealing from the wealthy and famous and turn it into a study on our obsessive society. Loud and abrasive, the film hits on all the right levels and puts Sophia Coppola back as one of our best filmmakers around.
5) Frances Ha (Noah Baumbach)
We’ve seen and heard the cute “coming of age New Yorker” story before but in the hands of Noah Baumbach (who is hit or miss with me) and shot and told in the Big Apple, this one bests most of them. Greta Gerwig gets her first leading role and here’s to hoping it results in many more shots.