Favorite Films of 2011

Melancholia by Lars von Trier — this is the first 8 minutes . . .

Kingdom by Lars von Trier — I think this must be the single funniest thing I watched this year, although the humor (and just about everything else) here is unlike any humor I’ve before seen. In my opinion, it was working on Kingdom that allowed von Trier to become the great director that so many know him as now . . .

Werckmeister Harmonies by Bela Tarr — the camera work here is beyond incredible. This is the film made from Melancholy of Resistance.

The Seventh Continent by Michael Haneke

Certified Copy by Abbas Kiarostami — for fans of postmodernism, Manuel Puig, Don DeLillo, translation, the performativity of character, etc . . .

Close-Up by Abbas Kiarostami — another one . . .

Summer/Le rayon vert by Eric Rohmer — Romer’s ability to make films out of the simplest gestures was amazing. Also, the women in Rohmer’s films don’t look like any other women . . .

Made in USA by Jean-Luc Godard — I had to watch this one about three times before I go the gist down . . .

Meek’s Cutoff — perfect cinematic match for Butcher’s Crossing.

More from Conversational Reading:

  1. On Melancholia I’m pretty strict about keeping it to literature around here, but the commentary on Lars von Trier’s new film Melancholia has been so bland—and therefore...
  2. The Five Obstructions MadinkBeard reviews The Five Obstructions, a movie which isn’t specifically about literature but whose insights into the creative process are meaningful for all kinds of...
  3. Smith on Sontag M.S. Smith discusses Susan Sontag’s film criticism: for me, her main achievement was her revision of the purpose of film criticism. Sontag’s writing on film...
  4. Taking 33 1/3 to Films I like the sound of Soft Skull’s new “Deep Focus” series of film criticism books pairing literary authors with movies. First up is Jonathan Lethem...
  5. Favorite Reads of 2011: Crash and Remainder Let's start this off with something a little different: Crash by J.G. Ballard and Remainder by Tom McCarthy. I pair them because Remainder is obviously...

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Nice to see some love for all these great films, especially underrated ones like Haneke’s THE SEVENTH CONTINENT which absolutely blew me away the first time I saw it, years ago on VHS, unaware of any of Haneke’s other work. If you liked those Von Trier films try THE IDIOTS.

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