Here are ten films I saw this year that I recommend:
- The Darjeeling Limited. Wes Anderson. A surprisingly effective look at the travels of three quirky brothers to find their mom in India.
- Michael Clayton. Tony Gilroy. Tense thriller about a legal fixer who makes bad things go away and gets involved with an agri-business giant who want a lawsuit go away.
- The Devil and Daniel Johnston. Jeff Feuerzeig. Documentary on the talented but disturbed singer-songwriter and artist.
- Juno. Jason Reitman. Sixteen-year-old Juno is pregnant and she decides to give up the baby to a loving couple.
- The Diving Bell and the Butterfly. Julian Schnabel. A man with locked-in syndrome tries to tell his story.
- Caramel. Nadine Labaki. Sweet film chronicling the lives of four women working in a Beirut beauty parlor and the neighboring tailor and her mother, the crazy Lili—that actress Azeeza Semaan, should have won some award or other.
- Bon Cop, Bad Cop. Erik Canuel. An Anglo cop and a Quebecoir cop get involved in a series of horrific murders involving hockey owners.
- Under the Same Moon. Patricia Riggen. A resourceful Mexican boy heads for America to find his mom in LA when his grandmother dies.
- The Band’s Visit. Eran Kolirin. A police orchestra arrives in the wrong Israeli desert town for a concert and is welcomed with unexpected hospitality. Great performance by Sasson Gabai as the leader of the band.
- Taxi to the Dark Side. Alex Gibney. Documentary of the systematic torture of American war prisoners.
Number eleven, of course, would be To Live and Die in Dixie by John Philbin.