In this week’s podcast, we finish indulging our year-end listing proclivities by running down the best movies of 2011. Chad is absent (poor guy’s never seen a movie), but, not to worry, your comfortingly consistent host Tom Roberge is joined by Nathan Furl (of Open Letter) to set the record straight about whether you should make a silent film these days, if Nicolas Cage movies are totes the best, why no one bothered to mention Tree of Life over the course of the hour, and more.
Tom and I (Nate) each picked our top five, and, as you can see, it turned out to be quite the diverse list of movies. The rundown, with handy previous, is below.
-Best Popcorn Movie: Drive Angry, directed by Patrick Lussier
-Best Adaptation: Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy, directed by Tomas Alfredson
-Best Movie That I Feel Foolish for Not Having Seen Earlier: Night Watch, directed by Timur Bekmambetov (Russia, 2004)
-Best Foreign Film: Animal Kingdom, directed by David Michôd (Australia)
-Best Foreign/Action Film: 13 Assassins, directed by Takashi Miike (Japan)
-Best Popcorn Flick That’s Surprisingly Impressive and Recommendable: Rise of the Planet of the Apes, directed by Rupert Wyatt
-Best Movie That I’m Cocksure Is One of the Best of the Year (but we’re doing this podcast before the movie has played anywhere near me, so, honestly, I haven’t seen it): The Artist, directed by Michel Hazanavicius (France)
-Best Documentary Film, a.k.a., the Best Movie Made by Errol Morris This Year: Tabloid, Directed by Errol Morris
-Second Best Movie of 2011 (or, maybe, the first): Drive, directed by Nicolas Winding Refn
-First Best Movie of 2011 (or, maybe, the second): Melancholia, directed by Lars von Trier
Oh, and this week’s intro/outro song is “A Real Hero (feat. Electric Youth)” by College, off the Drive soundtrack.
If you enjoy this podcast, please pass this along to your podcast-listening friends and rate us on iTunes. And if you have any questions, comments, or suggestions, feel free to email me at chad.post[at]rochester.edu.
“I preferred the war to the plague,” writes Curzio Malaparte in his 1949 novel, The Skin. He speaks of World War II and the destruction it has wrought on Italy, the city of Naples in particular. But the plague he. . .
With the steady rise of feminist scholarship and criticism in recent decades, it is little wonder that the work of Louise Labé should be attracting, as Richard Sieburth tells us in the Afterword to his translation, a “wide and thriving”. . .
In Conversations, we find ourselves again in the protagonist’s conscious and subconscious, which is mostly likely that of Mr. César Aira and consistent with prototypical Aira style. This style never fails because each time Aira is able to develop a. . .
You are not ashamed of what you do, but of what they see you do. Without realizing it, life can be an accumulation of secrets that permeates every last minute of our routine . . .
The narrative history of. . .
Literature in translation often comes with a certain pedigree. In this little corner of the world, with so few books making it into this comforting nook, it is often those of the highest quality that cross through, and attention is. . .
Alessandro Baricco’s Mr. Gwyn is a set of two loosely interlinked novellas that play with narrative and the construction of character. Ably translated by Ann Goldstein, Mr. Gwyn plays some subtle metafictional games as Baricco delves into what it means. . .
I must admit upfront that I went into reading Saadat Hasan Manto’s Bombay Stories almost entirely blind. I have not read Salman Rushdie. I have read, perhaps, two short stories by Jhumpa Lahiri. I might shamefully add that I really. . .
Throughout his work The Gray Notebook, Josep Pla mentions many different authors, some of whom have inspired him to pick up a pen. One of them is Marcel Proust. Even though Pla normally prefers nonfiction, he lauds the French novelist. . .
On that September 11th I had a conversation with a professor friend who was teaching a creative writing class that evening. He questioned, “What can I possibly teach when all of this has happened?” While the dismay and grief were. . .
In a story of two emotionally distant people, Japanese author Takashi Hiraide expertly evokes powerful feelings of love, loss, and friendship in his novel The Guest Cat. The life of the unnamed narrator and his wife, both writers, is calm. . .