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December 15, 2005

As I mentioned in the comments a few posts down (and contrary to the advance planning I did back in June) I feel like throwing my critical faculties to the wind and foregoing a Best-Of list this year. Everyone else is making them, and I certainly enjoy reading them; but by and large, they're pretty much all full of the same cross section of entries. I don't want to follow the crowd in terms of the titles I choose, but I also don't want to ignore a lot of those films that I genuinely love, like Capote, which don't technically need my endorsement. Nor do I want to have to have to choose between, say, Jay Rosenblatt's heartbreaking 27-minute The Phantom Limb and Peter Jackson's heartbreaking, 187-minute King Kong, both of which I could easily call the best film of the year, both of which are as beautiful as they are completely different. Why confine them to categorization? I could tell you why, but, at the moment, I'd rather not.

I will, however, list a few of my favorite filmgoing experiences of the year. Experiences are definitively subjective - they are purely mine - and are therefore safe to order (chronologically):

This is probably an incomplete list. Most of the movies may be out, but the year ain't over yet.

Posted by David Lowery at December 15, 2005 12:40 AM


To be completely honest, I don't think not wanting to follow the crowd is a good enough reason for not publishing a list. If you've got a list, publish it. It's called sharing.

I'm just being a dick, of course. ;)

Posted by: Matt at December 15, 2005 02:08 AM

I truly, honestly, don't have one. I could think for two minutes and come up with one, of course, but I keep putting those two minutes towards other endeavours...

Posted by: Ghostboy at December 15, 2005 02:16 AM

David, was the Kong movie really 307 minutes long? Was that an early cut or something?

Posted by: girish at December 15, 2005 08:00 AM

Oops, I meant three hours and seven minutes!

Although, knowing Peter Jackson, I don't doubt there was an early cut closing in on the six hour mark....

Posted by: Ghostboy at December 15, 2005 08:11 AM

ahhh... the heady, alcohol-soaked nights in berlin..

i didn't know there was a 70mm print of playtime floating around. if i tell my wife she'll have a heart attack, that's her favorite film.

Posted by: brad at December 15, 2005 08:22 AM

oh, and what about the battleship potemkin in berlin? honourable mention? ;)

Posted by: brad at December 15, 2005 01:37 PM

I can't imagine anything better than seeing that Playtime print on the big screen--unless it was seeing a pristine print of Vertigo instead, which, of course, David did!

It pains me.

Posted by: Matt at December 15, 2005 02:55 PM

CRAP! I'm updating the list right now - Battleship Potemkin was so amazing that I must have forgotten about it. That was the best thing ever.

Playtime is a close second. It was really unbelievable. Almost like watching it on IMAX - and there's an idea someone needs to take advantage of!

Posted by: Ghostboy at December 15, 2005 03:01 PM

do you know if there's a website or any other info about the 70mm playtime print? jesus i'm dying to see it..i'm guessing it already showed here when it was making it's rounds but i was hoping maybe it would be back here again someday soon.. i can't find much info online anywhere other than it was shown all over the country recently :(

Posted by: brad at December 15, 2005 03:15 PM

I think that Criterion/Janus Films were behind the restoration - which is briefly outlined here - but beyond that, I don't know. I guess I'd just keep an eye on the repertoire screenings listed in the Times or the New Yorker.

Posted by: Ghostboy at December 15, 2005 04:38 PM

The new 70mm PLAYTIME print came through Chicago and I was able to see the film for the first time that way. Pretty incredible. Like looking through a window. Virtually no grain. I felt like I could walk into the film.

Posted by: Joe Swanberg at December 16, 2005 10:26 AM

"by and large, they're pretty much all full of the same cross section of entries."

I guaran-damn-tee mine won't be.

Though I probably wouldn't do one either if my employers didn't insist upon it.

Posted by: LYT at December 17, 2005 12:58 AM