Bad Education – 2004 Almodóvar

My second time viewing it, first since theater in 2004, and what a revelationIt’s a captivating multi-layered web narrative trapped in a world with transcendent visuals "a rapturous masterwork" in 4 stars from Travers “Almodóvar

Millennium Mambo – 2001 Hsiao-Hsien Hou

Like all of Hsiao-Hsien Hou’s work it’s observational in style--we are tracking the life of Qi Shu’s Vicky—mostly in one room— Hou’s camera is often lingering at a distance in long takes right on her

The King of Comedy – 1982 Scorsese

There are three stand-alone bravura sequences in Scorsese’s The King of Comedy: the freeze frame credits, the shot of De Niro with the cardboard audience backdrop, and the lighting of the house of Sandra Bernhard—all

The 100th Best Director of All-Time: John Carpenter

Carpenter. Carpenter’s filmography would rank him farther down the list (around #125-130) but there’s authorship in his work that isn’t there with directors ahead of him on the filmography list like William Friedkin or Milos

Al Capone – 1959 Richard Wilson

An impressive film—Richard Wilson is no auteur but the direction is beyond competent, Lucien Ballard (Peckinpah’s best work) is the DP, Rod Steiger gives a tour-de-force lead and the writing and ensemble are great, tooHalf

Champagne – 1928 Hitchcock

Most memorable for being (I believe) cinema’s first freeze-frame. But it isn’t just in the archives for this one cinematic flourish—this film is a series of high-wire stylistic exercises Trojan-horsed in a pretty bland narrative

The 99th Best Director of All-Time: Hayao Miyazaki

Miyazaki. With Walt Disney’s actual influence as a film artist/director (vs. his acknowledged brilliance as a businessman, innovator and producer) an ongoing debate for decades there is little disagreement from most cinephiles that Miyazaki is

The Peanut Butter Falcon – 2019 Tyler Nilson and Michael Schwartz

Not groundbreaking by any stretch but the cast and consistent southern soundtrack lug it through into the archives Shia LaBeouf certain has found something with his southern hobo trashy (almost like he’s auditioning for a

Raging Bull – 1980 Scorsese

From the onset of the film with the Cavalleria Rusticana Intermezzo from Mascagni with slow-motion photography and the fog behind the ring you know you’re witnessing a masterpiece From the onset of the film with

The 98th Best Director of All-Time: Ernst Lubitsch

Lubitsch. For this list it is best not to look at Lubitsch’s best film but the quality and consistency of authorship of his 6th, 7th, 8th best films.  These are all excellent films that carried “the

Millennium Actress– 2001 Kon

It’s exceedingly worthy of praise and study and not simply for the mind-expanding mental gymnastics required to stay up with the various scenarios and narrative slivers Auteur-driven animation is pretty rare and Satoshi Kon has

Cruel Intentions – 1999 Kumble

Transcends (that word choice may be an overstatement) beyond guilty pleasure mainly because of Kumble’s writing—it’s such a deliciously wicked—Machiavellian-- adaptation of the 18th century book by Pierre Choderlos de Laclos and excellent (superior to

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