The Cinéaste's Progress from This List to That Which Is to Come (He Hopes)


Once upon a time, I used to play a coy, rather pointless game w/r/t my annual top ten list -- dramatically "unveiling" it sometime in January, as if most everybody who reads this site didn't already have a pretty good idea of what it was gonna look like. Instead, I now publicly revise the sucker as I go along, so that the whole affair becomes a suspenseful Journey Toward Aesthetic Nirvana. Or something.

Here, then, is what my list would look like if (god forbid) I were forced to make it today:



THE "PURE" LIST (2021 premiere)

01. Memoria (Apichatpong Weerasethakul, Colombia/Thailand/UK/Mexico/France)
02. Pig (Michael Sarnoski, USA)
03. In Front of Your Face (Hong Sang-soo, South Korea)
04. Red Rocket (Sean Baker, USA)
05. Annette (Leos Carax, France/Germany/Belgium/Japan/Mexico)
06. Ahed's Knee (Nadav Lapid, France/Germany/Israel)
07. Benediction (Terence Davies, UK)
08. Petite Maman (Céline Sciamma, France)
09. The Power of the Dog (Jane Campion, New Zealand/Australia)
10. Paris, 13th District (Jacques Audiard, France)



THE "POLLS" LIST (2021 commercial "release"; includes streaming)

01. Memoria (Apichatpong Weerasethakul,Colombia/Thailand/UK/Mexico/France)
02. Pig (Michael Sarnoski, USA)
03. The Killing of Two Lovers (Robert Machoian, USA)
04. Red Rocket (Sean Baker, USA)
05. Annette (Leos Carax, France/Germany/Belgium/Japan/Mexico)
06. Enemies of the State (Sonia Kennebeck, USA)
07. Short Vacation (Kwon Min-pyo & Seo Han-sol, South Korea)
08. It Must Be Heaven (Elia Suleiman, France)
09. Belonging (Burak Çevik, Turkey/Canada)
10. Petite Maman (Céline Sciamma, France)