Monday, May 28, 2012

Top 10: 28/05/2012

Irreversible: don't care if the backwards folding narrative had already been done the mounting sense of tragedy overcomes me with this one, through the hellish violence and threat of the main body of the film all the way up to its sublime and poignant finale/beginning.

Seconds: a bizarre and ultimately heart rending story of the impossibility of a second chance. Also, an eerie mask of star Rock Hudson's own life as a closeted gay hearthrob in Hollywood.

Being John Malkovich: the premise in the trailer alone made me laugh uncontrollably. The feature delivered on every promise.

Donnie Darko: is he a time traveller or just a schiz? Don't bother with the recut version as it tries to force the answer to that question.

Eraserhead: Unchallangeable.

The Fall: possibly Tarsem Singh's one and only shot at greatness is borrowed from another film but inolves such a startling evocation of a child's imagination that that aspect alone on repeated viewings even overtakes the jaw droppingly gorgeous visuals. A masterpiece. One is more than most people get out their careers.

Ringu: you can find the conventionality of this tale but to do so you need to lift layer after layer of innovation and careful craftsmanship. The film that saved the horror genre somewhat ironically by showing the dangers of copying without reading.

Casablanca: I don't care that Robert McKee calls this the best film ever made, I still like it. It was shown on tv in Brisbane in the early 80s and I remember hearing a people whistling As Time Goes By around the CBD the next day.

Blackbeard the Pirate: Robert Newton as the original arrrr, matey pirate king delivers the kind of blustering force of chaos who is both daunting and hilarious (intentionally). I saw it once while tucking into a still quite meaty cold leg of lamb I'd pinched from the fridge. A bite into that (oversalted) washed down with some fine Jamaican cola was like watching inside the screen. I need to get a copy of this.

Tale of Two Sisters: when South Korean horror films transcend their own genre as is their wont, they deliver treasure, like this wicked stepmother story that goes from continually unsettling (with only one conventional Asian horror scare) to outright crazy in the finale. Also manages to be sumptuously beautiful.


  1. Donnie Darko? Being John Malkovich? The Fall? Good grief, man.

  2. Not precisely my favourite fillums.

  3. Well, was my top ten. Sorry for the confusion. You are welcome to post your top ten here, though. However ...

    I'm doing a weekly top ten in defiance of the idea of all-time favourite lists which have always annoyed me as a notion. I change what mine are whenever I think of what they might be. I've done this for the past few weeks (they are all dated) and decide on the day what they are and write something about them to substantiate the choice, knowing that I'm not bound to repeat any the next week. I've invited everyone who reads them to contribute their own so we can see the differences not only between us but between our own choices over time.

    Not a scientific survey. Just a fun one. The only constant in mine has been Eraserhead. If I saw a film that beat it that one would be in one of these lists instead of it. And then it might be dropped the next week ...

  4. My top 10 off the top of my head tonight:

    Jericho Mile

    Breakheart Pass

    92 in the Shade


    Caged Heat


    Nobody's Fool

    Richard III (the Nazi one)

    Master & Commander


  5. Well there ya go, only two in that list I've seen and four I've never heard of. I'll look em up. Ta