Thursday, December 27, 2012

Top 10 Older Films I Saw in 2012

One of the many Bergman films I saw this year.

A lot of bloggers are doing posts like this, so I thought I'd post mine. Any film released before 2012 qualifies, but I don't have a single film from this century on my list.

10. Pierrot le Fou (1965)

I'm not as familiar with Godard's work as I should be, but this is my favorite film of his. It's colorful, playful, and very enjoyable.

9. Love in the Afternoon (1957)

If you can track this Billy Wilder film down, see it. It's funny and charming, with some of Audrey Hepburn's best work.

8. The Seven Year Itch (1955)

This gets a bad wrap, but I consider it Billy Wilder's most undervalued film. Marilyn Monroe gives her best performance, and there are plenty of laughs to go around.

7. Grave of the Fireflies (1988)

Beautiful and heartbreaking. Apart from Spirited Away, it's the best animated film I've ever seen.

6. Smiles of a Summer Night (1955)

A period satire that put Bergman on the map after it was nominated for the Palme d'Or at Cannes. It's a very underrated Bergman flick.

5. The Ox-Bow Incident (1943)

If you like 12 Angry Men and/or westerns, check this out. Henry Fonda is terrific in this forgotten Best Picture Oscar nominee.

4. Jackie Brown (1997)

My new favorite Tarantino film. It has it all - great dialogue, fine performances, and a fantastic soundtrack.

3. The Passion of Anna (1970)

Bergman regulars Max von Sydow, Liv Ullmann, Bibi Andersson, and Erland Josephson give wonderful performances. An underseen gem from Bergman.

2. A Short Film About Killing/A Short Film About Love (1988)

Kieslowski's longer versions of two episodes from The Decalogue are staggering achievements in their own right. If you're a fan, check these out.

1. Bergman's Faith Trilogy (1961-63)

Three extraordinary films that you must see. Loaded with tremendous performances and vivid imagery, these are arguably one of Bergman's finest achievements.


  1. Wow, I haven't seen a single one of these - thanks for the inspiration!

  2. Wow !! So, just asking. Do you think Love in the Afternoon is better than Sabrina(asking strictly because of the Wilder-Hepburn combo)?
    Great to see Fireflies on the list. It breaks my heart to little pieces but I LOVE that movie.
    I'll get to Faith Trilogy at some point next year. I have to, that's why I put it on my Blind Spot List.

    1. Yeah, I think Love in the Afternoon is better than Sabrina. Hepburn gives a better performance in Love in the Afternoon too IMO.


  3. I really didn't enjoy Seven Year Itch outside of Monroe's work, which really was lovely. I've seen one of films from the Faith triogy, Winter Light, and I really liked it.
    Love 4, 7, 10.

    1. Yeah, Seven Year Itch isn't a film most people like, but I just LOVED it.

      Ooh, you should watch Through a Glass Darkly and The Silence then.

  4. Great idea for a list, Josh, I might give this a try if I get the chance. I've never seen any Goddard films but Pierrot le Fou sounds delightful!

    1. Thanks, Ruth! Be interested to see your list, if you do one.

      Pierrot le Fou is a great place to start with Godard.

  5. Hopefully I'll get to a few of these in 2013, and hopefully the films will work their magic on me as much as they did on you!
    I 'll add Winter Light to my blind spot list, since the trilogy is in first place here, haven't seen enough Bergman

    1. Yay! I hope so too. And seeing more Bergman is always a good thing. :)

  6. Biggest surprise must be Jackie Brown. I know I'm 30 now but surely you're not so young you weren't in a massive rush to see it when you got in to QT? Pierrot is also an interesting choice as favourite Godard. I only saw it for the first time in 2012 myself but as with most of his stuff his experimental nature and boundary pushing leaves me a little lukewarm.

    1. I wanted to see it when I discovered QT, but I just kinda overlooked it for a few years. Other than Death Proof and Four Rooms, I'd say it's his least popular film (as far as the general public is concerned). I suppose that's why I didn't see it right away.

      I liked the playfulness of Pierrot. It's a lot more fun than Breathless, Les Carabiniers, Le Petit Soldat, Contempt, and Band of Outsiders, to name a few.