Thursday, December 01, 2005


Ten Best Lists 1982-2012

NOTE: On foreign releases, I go by the U.S. release date, not year of release in their home countries or Oscar nominations for foreign film, unless they coincide. On U.S. releases, I go by year of Oscar eligibility, whenever possible. They are also ever-evolving as I see things I might have missed from the years in question. I've provided links to reviews if I happen to have one on the site.

1. Tootsie directed by Sydney Pollack
2. E.T.: the Extra-Terrestrial directed by Steven Spielberg
3. Diner directed by Barry Levinson
4. Das Boot directed by Wolfgang Peterson
5. An Officer and a Gentleman directed by Taylor Hackford
6. Mephisto directed by István Szabó
7. Poltergeist directed by Tobe Hooper
8. Pink Floyd — The Wall directed by Alan Parker
9. Victor, Victoria directed by Blake Edwards
10. Richard Pryor Live on the Sunset Strip directed by Joe Layton

1. Fanny and Alexander directed by Ingmar Bergman
2. Terms of Endearment directed by James L. Brooks
3. The Right Stuff directed by Philip Kaufman
4. Risky Business directed by Paul Brickman5. Betrayal directed by David Jones
6. The King of Comedy directed by Martin Scorsese
7. Zelig directed by Woody Allen
8. A Christmas Story directed by Bob Clark
9. Star 80 directed by Bob Fosse
10. Local Hero directed by Bill Forsyth

1. Amadeus directed by Milos Forman
2. The Killing Fields directed by Roland Joffe
3. Broadway Danny Rose directed by Woody Allen
4. This Is Spinal Tap directed by Rob Reiner
5. Choose Me directed by Alan Rudolph
6. A Sunday in the Country directed by Bertrand Tavernier
7. The Pope of Greenwich Village directed by Stuart Rosenberg
8. Birdy directed by Alan Parker
9. The Natural directed by Barry Levinson
10. Places in the Heart directed by Robert Benton

1. The Purple Rose of Cairo directed by Woody Allen
2. Prizzi's Honor directed by John Huston
3. Back to the Future directed by Robert Zemeckis
4. After Hours directed by Martin Scorsese
5. Ran directed by Akira Kurosawa
6. Blood Simple directed by Joel Coen
7. The Official Story directed by Luis Puenzo
8. Lost in America directed by Albert Brooks
9. Witness directed by Peter Weir
10. Brazil directed by Terry Gilliam

1. Hannah and Her Sisters directed by Woody Allen
2. Sherman's March directed by Ross McElwee
3. Little Shop of Horrors directed by Frank Oz
4. The Mission directed by Roland Joffe
5. Aliens directed by James Cameron
6. Sid & Nancy directed by Alex Cox
7. Manhunter directed by Michael Mann
8. Decline of the American Empire directed by Denys Arcand
9. Absolute Beginners directed by Julien Temple
10. Blue Velvet directed by David Lynch

1. Broadcast News directed by James L. Brooks
2. Full Metal Jacket directed by Stanley Kubrick
3. The Princess Bride directed by Rob Reiner
4. House of Games directed by David Mamet
5. Matewan directed by John Sayles
6. River's Edge directed by Tim Hunter
7. Angel Heart directed by Alan Parker
8. Barfly directed by Barbet Schroeder
9. Jean de Florette directed by Claude Berri
10. The Last Emperor directed by Bernardo Bertolucci

1. Die Hard directed by John McTiernan
2. The Thin Blue Line directed by Errol Morris
3. The Accidental Tourist directed by Lawrence Kasdan
4. Who Framed Roger Rabbit directed by Robert Zemeckis
5. Wings of Desire directed by Wim Wenders
6. Eight Men Out directed by John Sayles
7. Patty Hearst directed by Paul Schrader
8. Talk Radio directed by Oliver Stone
9. Tucker: The Man and His Dream directed by Francis Ford Coppola
10. Bull Durham directed by Ron Shelton

1. Do the Right Thing directed by Spike Lee
2. sex, lies, and videotape directed by Steven Soderbergh
3. Field of Dreams directed by Phil Alden Robinson
4. Crimes and Misdemeanors directed by Woody Allen
5. Heathers directed by Michael Lehmann
6. Roger & Me directed by Michael Moore
7. My Left Foot directed by Jim Sheridan
8. The Fabulous Baker Boys directed by Steve Kloves
9. Glory directed by Edward Zwick
10. War of the Roses directed by Danny De Vito

1. Goodfellas directed by Martin Scorsese
2. Miller's Crossing directed by Joel Coen
3. Reversal of Fortune directed by Barbet Schroeder
4. The Cook, the Thief, His Wife & Her Lover directed by Peter Greenaway
5. Cinema Paradiso directed by Giuseppe Tornatore
6. The Grifters directed by Stephen Frears
7. Men Don't Leave directed by Paul Brickman
8. Avalon directed by Barry Levinson
9. After Dark, My Sweet directed by James Foley
10. Longtime Companion directed by Norman Rene

1. Beauty and the Beast directed by Gary Trousdale and Kirk Wise
2. Homicide directed by David Mamet
3. Slacker directed by Richard Linklater
4. The Rapture directed by Michael Tolkin
5. Once Around directed by Lasse Hallström
6. City of Hope directed by John Sayles
7. The Silence of the Lambs directed by Jonathan Demme
8. Defending Your Life directed by Albert Brooks
9. Ju Dou directed by Zhang Yimou
10. Europa Europa directed by Agnieszka Holland

1. The Crying Game directed by Neil Jordan
2. The Player directed by Robert Altman
3. Raise the Red Lantern directed by Zhang Yimou
4. Howards End directed by James Ivory
5. Reservoir Dogs directed by Quentin Tarantino
6. Unforgiven directed by Clint Eastwood
7. A Midnight Clear directed by Kevin Gordon
8. Proof directed by Jocelyn Moorhouse
9. American Me directed by Edward James Olmos
10. Glengarry Glen Ross directed by James Foley

1. Schindler's List directed by Steven Spielberg
2. Short Cuts directed by Robert Altman
3. The Piano directed by Jane Campion
4. The Age of Innocence directed by Martin Scorsese
5. Menace II Society directed by The Hughes Brothers
6. Thirty-Two Short Films About Glenn Gould directed by François Girard
7. Dazed and Confused directed by Richard Linklater
8. The Remains of the Day directed by James Ivory
9. Blue directed by Krzysztof Kieslowski
10.Hard-Boiled directed by John Woo

1. Pulp Fiction directed by Quentin Tarantino
2. To Live directed by Zhang Yimou
3. Red directed by Krzysztof Kieslowski
4. Nobody's Fool directed by Robert Benton
5. Quiz Show directed by Robert Redford
6. The Last Seduction directed by John Dahl
7. Forrest Gump directed by Robert Zemeckis
8. Ed Wood directed by Tim Burton
9. The Shawshank Redemption directed by Frank Darabont
10. Vanya on 42nd Street directed by Louis Malle

1. Crumb directed by Terry Zwigoff
2. Les Miserables directed by Claude LeLouch
3. Leaving Las Vegas directed by Mike Figgis
4. A Little Princess directed by Alfonso Cuarón
5. To Die For directed by Gus Van Sant
6. Toy Story directed by John Lasseter
7. Nixon directed by Oliver Stone
8. Get Shorty directed by Barry Sonnenfeld
9. Heat directed by Michael Mann
10. Dead Man Walking directed by Tim Robbins

1. Lone Star directed by John Sayles
2. Looking for Richard directed by Al Pacino
3. Flirting With Disaster directed by David O. Russell
4. The People Vs. Larry Flynt directed by Milos Forman
5. Trainspotting directed by Danny Boyle
6. Sling Blade directed by Billy Bob Thornton
7. Star Trek: First Contact directed by Jonathan Frakes
8. Jerry Maguire directed by Cameron Crowe
9. I Shot Andy Warhol directed by Mary Harron
10. The Crucible directed by Nicholas Hytner

1. L.A. Confidential directed by Curtis Hanson
2. The Sweet Hereafter directed by Atom Egoyan
3. Chasing Amy directed by Kevin Smith
4. Ulee's Gold directed by Victor Nunez
5. The Ice Storm directed by Ang Lee
6. Boogie Nights directed by Paul Thomas Anderson
7. Wag the Dog directed by Barry Levinson
8. My Best Friend's Wedding directed by P.J. Hogan
9. The Full Monty directed by Peter Cattaneo
10. She's So Lovely directed by Nick Cassavetes

1. Gods and Monsters directed by Bill Condon
2. A Simple Plan directed by Sam Raimi
3. Saving Private Ryan directed by Steven Spielberg
4. Rushmore directed by Wes Anderson
5. Waking Ned Devine directed by Kirk Jones
6. Bulworth directed by Warren Beatty
7. Without Limits directed by Robert Towne
8. Love and Death on Long Island directed by Richard Kwietnioski
9. Insomnia directed by Erik Skjoldbjaerg
10. A Taste of Cherry directed by Abbas Kiarostami

1. Fight Club directed by David Fincher
2. The Straight Story directed by David Lynch
3. American Beauty directed by Sam Mendes
4. Three Kings directed by David O. Russell
5. South Park: Bigger, Longer & Uncut directed by Trey Parker
6. The Dream Life of Angels directed by Erick Zonca
7. Election directed by Alexander Payne
8. Get Real directed by Simon Shore
9. Boys Don't Cry directed by Kimberly Peirce
10. All About My Mother directed by Pedro Almodóvar

1. Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon directed by Ang Lee
2. Almost Famous directed by Cameron Crowe
3. Wonder Boys directed by Curtis Hanson
4. Croupier directed by Mike Hodges
5. You Can Count on Me directed by Kenneth Lonergan
6. Traffic directed by Steven Soderbergh
7. Requiem for a Dream directed by Darren Aranofsky
8. Finding Forrester directed by Gus Van Sant
9. Chuck & Buck directed by Miguel Arteta
10. Keeping the Faith directed by Edward Norton

1. Memento directed by Christopher Nolan
2. In the Bedroom directed by Todd Field
3. The Royal Tenenbaums directed by Wes Anderson
4. No Man's Land directed by Danis Tanovic
5. Panic directed by Henry Bromell
6. Ghost World directed by Terry Zwigoff
7. Mulholland Drive directed by David Lynch
8. Lagaan: Once Upon a Time in India directed by Ashutosh Gowariker
9. The Widow of Saint-Pierre directed by Patrice Leconte
10. Bridget Jones's Diary directed by Sharon Maguire

1. Talk to Her directed by Pedro Almodóvar
2. About Schmidt directed by Alexander Payne
3. About a Boy directed by Chris Weitz and Paul Weitz
4. Rabbit-Proof Fence directed by Philip Noyce
5. Gangs of New York directed by Martin Scorsese
6. Catch Me If You Can directed by Steven Spielberg
7. The Piano Teacher directed by Michael Haneke
8. Bowling for Columbine directed by Michael Moore
9. Far From Heaven directed by Todd Haynes
10. Y Tu Mama Tambien directed by Alfonso Cuarón

1. Lost in Translation directed by Sofia Coppola
2. House of Sand and Fog directed by Vadim Perelman
3. Shattered Glass directed by Billy Ray
4. In America directed by Jim Sheridan
5. The Barbarian Invasions directed by Denys Arcand
6. Capturing the Friedmans directed by Andrew Jarecki
7. Bad Santa directed by Terry Zwigoff
8. A Mighty Wind directed by Christopher Guest
9. The Good Thief directed by Neil Jordan
10. Dark Blue directed by Ron Shelton

1. Hotel Rwanda directed by Terry George
2. Maria Full of Grace directed by Joshua Marston
3. Sideways directed by Alexander Payne
4. Finding Neverland directed by Marc Forster
5. The Aviator directed by Martin Scorsese
6. Bad Education directed by Pedro Almodóvar
7. Kinsey directed by Bill Condon
8. Tupac: Resurrection directed by Lauren Lazin
9. Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter ... and Spring directed by Kim Ki-Duk
10. Million Dollar Baby directed by Clint Eastwood

1. The Three Burials of Melquiades Estrada directed by Tommy Lee Jones
2. A History of Violence directed by David Cronenberg
3. Murderball directed by Henry Alex Rubin and Dana Adam Shapiro
4. Grizzly Man directed by Werner Herzog
5. Tell Them Who You Are directed by Mark Wexler
6. Thumbsucker directed by Mike Mills
7. Saraband directed by Ingmar Bergman
8. Memories of Murder directed by Bong Joon-ho
9. Cache (Hidden) directed by Michael Haneke
10. Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room directed by Alex Gibney

1. Letters From Iwo Jima directed by Clint Eastwood
2. The Departed directed by Martin Scorsese
3. The Queen directed by Stephen Frears
4. Little Children directed by Todd Field
5. Little Miss Sunshine directed by Jonathan Dayton and Valerie Faris
6. Water directed by Deepa Mehta
7. Deliver Us From Evil directed by Amy Berg
8. Monster House directed by Gil Kenan
9. Infamous directed by Douglas McGrath
10. Inside Man directed by Spike Lee

1. The Diving Bell and the Butterfly directed by Julian Schnabel
2. The Lives of Others directed by Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck
3. No End in Sight directed by Charles Ferguson
4. No Country for Old Men directed by Joel and Ethan Coen
5. Charlie Wilson's War directed by Mike Nichols
6. Away From Her directed by Sarah Polley
7. Into the Wild directed by Sean Penn
8. The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford directed by Andrew Dominik
9. Zodiac directed by David Fincher
10. Before the Devil Knows You're Dead directed by Sidney Lumet

1. WALL-E directed by Andrew Stanton
2. 4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days directed by Cristian Mungiu
3. The Counterfeiters directed by Stefan Ruzowitzky
4. Let the Right One In directed by Tomas Alfredson
5. The Edge of Heaven directed by Fatih Akin
6. Waltz With Bashir directed by Ari Folman
7. I've Loved You So Long directed by Philippe Claudel
8. Revolutionary Road directed by Sam Mendes
9. Nick and Norah's Infinite Playlist directed by Peter Sollett
10. In Bruges directed by Martin McDonagh

1. (500) Days of Summer directed by Marc Webb
2. Food, Inc. directed by Robert Kenner
3. You, the Living directed by Roy Andersson
4. A Serious Man directed by Joel and Ethan Coen
5. Inglourious Basterds directed by Quentin Tarantino
6. Lorna’s Silence directed by Jean-Louis and Luc Dardenne
7. In the Loop directed by Armando Iannucci
8. Red Cliff directed by John Woo
9. Me and Orson Welles directed by Richard Linklater
10. The Messenger directed by Oren Moverman

1. The Social Network directed by David Fincher
2. Winter’s Bone directed by Debra Granik
3. Mother directed by Bong Joon-ho
4. A Prophet directed by Jacques Audiard
5. True Grit directed by Joel & Ethan Coen
6. Wild Grass directed by Alain Resnais
7. Inside Job directed by Charles Ferguson
8. Scott Pilgrim vs. the World directed by Edgar Wright
9. The Tillman Story directed by Amir Bar-Lev
10. Please Give directed by Nicole Holofcener

1. How to Die in Oregon directed by Peter D. Richardson
2. The Descendants directed by Alexander Payne
3. Poetry directed by Lee Chang-dong
4. Incendies directed by Denis Villeneuve
5. Moneyball directed by Bennett Miller
6. Midnight in Paris directed by Woody Allen
7. Margin Call directed by J.C. Chandor
8. 13 Assassins directed by Takashi Miike
9. Hugo directed by Martin Scorsese
10. Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy directed by Tomas Alfredson

1. The Kid With a Bike directed by Jean-Pierre and Luc Dardenne
2. The Perks of Being a Wallflower directed by Stephen Chbosky
3. Argo directed by Ben Affleck
4. Lincoln directed by Steven Spielberg
5. Silver Linings Playbook directed by David O. Russell
6. The Intouchables directed by Olivier Nakache and Eric Toledano
7. How to Survive a Plague directed by David France
8. Life of Pi directed by Ang Lee
9. Moonrise Kingdom directed by Wes Anderson
10. Ai Weiwei: Never Sorry directed by Alison Klayman


SWEET HEREAFTER, ICE STORM, BARBARIAN INVASIONS, TALK TO HER, etc. I admire your taste in films. Not sure if you have seen this one, but if not check out THE WAR ZONE (2000). A dark interesting film that runs in the same pack mentioned above. Directed by Tim Roth. Starring Ray Winstone and Colin Ferrel's film debut (his apperence is practially a cameo.)
I haven't seen The War Zone. I'll try to check that out. Thanks.
Here are whgat I think are the great movies of each year (When I mean great I mean ready to make my Top 100 Movies of all Time or are closer:

The Squid and the Whale
Brokeback Mountain

Garden State
Vera Drake
Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind
Kill Bill (Counted as one movie)

Love Actually
The Last Samurai

The Good Girl

The Man Who Wasn't There
Ghost World

Wonder Boys
The Virgin Suicides

Office Space
Being John Malkovich
The Green Mile

The Truman Show
Primary Colors

The Ice Storm
Wag the Dog

Flirting with Disaster
The War at Home
Sling Blade
The People vs. Larry Flynt

A Goofy Movie

Natural Born Killers
Quiz Show
Pulp Fiction
The Shawshank Redemption

The Adams Family Values
Groundhog Day

Reservoir Dogs

The Silence of the Lambs
Boyz N the Hood


Crimes and Misdemeanors
Do the Right Thing

I'll Just Stop Right There before I babble...

When are you going to do Top 10 of 2005?
I'm getting close. There are still a few things I'd like to see before I finalize it.
1. The Three Burials of Melquiades Estrada directed by Tommy Lee Jones
2. A History of Violence directed by David Cronenberg
3. Murderball directed by Henry Alex Rubin and Dana Adam Shapiro
4. Grizzly Man directed by Werner Herzog
5. Tell Them Who You Are directed by Mark Wexler
6. Thumbsucker directed by Mike Mills
7. Saraband directed by Ingmar Bergman
8. Crash directed by Paul Haggis
9. Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room directed by Alex Gibney
10. The Constant Gardener directed by Fernando Meirelles


I was begining to think me and Kayla were the only ones in Oscar Diary that had seen it
May I suggest for your 2005 list two great films -
Good Night and Good Luck.

Just watched them both again and they are just brilliant.

Also, for 1997, Robert Duvall's The Apostle is one of the great American films. Such a beautifully realized film that takes on a dicey subject matter.

While I don't agree with all your picks, I sure enjoyed reading the lists. They remind of films I want to see or want to see again.
While I liked Capote, Good Night and Good Luck and The Apostle, I didn't like any of them quite enough to make the cut. In fact, I actually preferred Infamous to Capote for telling the same tale. I did love Duvall in The Apostle though and gave him my best actor award that year, which Oscar should have done as well.
You know, the person above had it absolutely right about The Man Who Wasn't There being one of the best, if not the best, film of 2001. Good Call. I was perusing your take on Oscar noms and picks, and thought it a mite strange that Laura Linney wouldn't even get a nom for You Can Count on Me. Ellen Burstyn was a fine choice, but Laura Linney was a revelation in that film. What gives? Also, your review of King Kong, I think, was way off. Other than that, great site--and great guide for any film lover's Netflix cue.
If you looked closer at my awards for 2000, I have a category for acting duo and Linney and Mark Ruffalo won it for You Can Count on Me.
Thats an impressive list you've made. I know its not possible to watch every single movie, but you missed some potential movies of the year like chungking express, eternal sunshine..., amores perros, oldboy, magnolia, run lola run, fargo, etc.
of the films you mentioned, Oldboy is the only one I haven't seen. I thought Magnolia and Fargo were overrated, but I liked all the others, just not enough to make tbe top 10 cut.
My top ten list is on my blog with further detail, but my top ten of 2008 were: The Dark Knight, The Wrestler, Gran Torino, Slumdog Millionaire, Let the Right One In, The Visitor, Rachel Getting Married, Doubt, The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, and Changeling.
Good stuff Ed, I just rebooted my own lists from 1990-2009 on dont't really share similar choices but that's the beaut of cinema !

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