Monday, December 19, 2005

A Word About Best Lists

These are already starting to pop up all over: keep up with GreenCine Daily and OscarWatch and you'll know when all the major critics check in.

Mini-minor critic that I am, I'm hoping to have a Top 10 list posted for the year by around the first week of January. Of course, one always hopes to have seen everything and, without a press card or any other means of keeping up, one never has. The only films left which I refuse to make a Top 10 without seeing are: Brokeback Mountain, Kings and Queen, Munich, The New World, Sometimes in April, and Wolf Creek. Don't give me guff about April: I know it only aired on HBO, but it played the Berlinale, and if Hollywood can't Bring It a little better than it did this year, I'm all over making room for strong cable TV by big-time directors like Raoul Peck. And don't give me guff about Wolf Creek, because it has superb buzz, and I'm all about the well-made horror; even in an exceptional year like last year, no way I wasn't making room for Dawn of the Dead.

Given where I'll be in the next two weeks, I'm hoping to also be properly situated to catch Down to the Bone, Memoirs of a Geisha, Mrs. Henderson Presents, The Three Burials of Melquiades Estrada, and TransAmerica, but I'll consider my Top 10 pretty safe if I haven't. I'd love to reserve judgment till Caché and Match Point cross my path, but I'm worried that won't be for a while.

And finally, as I'm surveying my current lists of five in the acting divisions for the Nick's Flick Picks Honorees, I'm noting that the 20 performances hail from 18 different movies. Without even trying to spread the wealth on purpose. Proof in my eyes that 2005 was all about the buried treasures in farflung and often inconsistent movies, rather than the outta-the-park home runs. (Again, though, those last movies to come could change all of this.)

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