This opening bit might not be in the book but most of what follows is.

My Top 10

  1. That Obscure Object of Desire
  2. King Lear
  3. Equus
  4. Oh God
  5. The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh
  6. The Marquise de O
  7. Dersu Uzala

Note:  That’s it.  That’s all I’ve got.  I had actually placed Jacob the Liar on the list (at #4) but when I looked at it again, I realized that it was a screenplay first, then, when cutbacks in film production in East Germany delayed the film for nearly a decade, it was rewritten as a novel.  But the screenplay had already existed which means, in spite of the credits, it’s not really an adapted script and I can skip having to review a very good film (and book) that are also brutally depressing so Happy New Year (2019) to me. (more…)

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“Deep Throat moved closer to Woodward. ‘Let me explain something,’ he said. ‘When you move on someone like Haldeman, you’ve got to be sure you’re on the most solid ground. Shit, what a royal screw-up!'” (p 220)

My Top 10:

  1. All the President’s Men
  2. Solyaris
  3. Carrie
  4. Voyage of the Damned
  5. The Outlaw Josey Wales
  6. The Shootist
  7. Marathon Man
  8. The Last Tycoon
  9. The Bingo Long Traveling All-Stars and Motor Kings
  10. The Seven-Per-Cent Solution

Note:  There has been a change since my Nighthawk Awards, with The Shootist moving up into the Top 10.  If it seems like a big leap, that’s because #6-10 aren’t all that strong and in a good year many of them wouldn’t make the list.  The only two films on my list that aren’t in the Top 10 are both reviewed below because of nominations: Bound for Glory and Family Plot. (more…)

Surprisingly enough, there are no Knights Who Say Ni in the original Malory. Neither is there a Black Knight who says “It’s only a flesh wound”, a witch being weighed against a duck, a holy hand grenade or a killer rabbit.

My Top 10

  1. Monty Python and the Holy Grail
  2. One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest
  3. Barry Lyndon
  4. The Man Who Would Be King
  5. Three Days of the Condor
  6. Jaws
  7. The Sunshine Boys
  8. Hester Street
  9. The Story of Adele H.
  10. The Day of the Locust

note:  Originally, Hester Street was reviewed as a WGA nominee.  But, my reaction to the film bumped it up the list and it displaced French Connection II (which still gets reviewed because it was also a WGA nominee).

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This scene isn’t in the original novel even though it comes during the period of time covered by the novel. Nor is it ever mentioned in the novel that the Don’s birthday is December 7. This is pure Coppola.

My Top 10

  1. The Godfather Part II
  2. Young Frankenstein
  3. The Parallax View
  4. Murder on the Orient Express
  5. Lenny
  6. The Front Page
  7. The Taking of Pelham One Two Three
  8. The Apprenticeship of Duddy Kravitz
  9. Thieves Like Us
  10. Sanshiro Sugata

Note:  If you look at my original Nighthawk Awards you will only see nine films listed.  But, re-watching The Taking of Pelham One Two Three, which I needed to review anyway because it was a WGA nominee, I was reminded that it should have been on my list in the first place because the script really is quite good. (more…)

“As he reached for his hat, Chris was nodding her head, and then suddenly she was looking into eyes that overwhelmed her, that shone with intelligence and kindly understanding, with serenity that poured from them into her being like the waters of a warm and healing river whose source was both in him yet somehow beyond him; whose flow was contained and yet headlong and endless.” (p 291)

My Top 10

  1. The Exorcist
  2. Serpico
  3. The Day of the Jackal
  4. The Friends of Eddie Coyle
  5. Don’t Look Now
  6. Paper Moon
  7. The Last Detail
  8. A Doll’s House

Note:  This is my full list for the year.  It used to have one more film but as I was writing the review of Bang the Drum Slowly (comparing it to Brian’s Song, both of which are early 70’s films, though Brian’s Song was originally a tv film, that star major actors in their pre-Godfather roles as athletes forming an important friendship while dying of cancer, though of course Brian’s Song was a true story and this was based on an overrated novel), I realized that it really didn’t belong on the list.  The film succeeds, not on its writing, but on the performances of Robert De Niro and Vincent Gardenia and the moving scene with the song “Streets of Laredo”.  So I cut it from the list and since it wasn’t nominated for anything, I didn’t bother to include it. (more…)

“Kay could see how Michael stood to receive their homage.  He reminded her of statues in Rome, statues of those Roman emperors of antiquity, who, by divine right, held the power of life and death over their fellow men.  One hand was on his hip, the profile of his face showed a cold proud power, his body was carelessly, arrogantly at ease, weight resting on one foot slightly behind the other.  The caporegimes stood before him.  In that moment Kay knew that everything Connie had accused Michael of was true.” (p 419)

My Top 10

  1. The Godfather
  2. Sleuth
  3. Play It Again Sam
  4. Cabaret
  5. Deliverance
  6. Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Sex
  7. The Heartbreak Kid
  8. Fat City
  9. Travels with My Aunt
  10. Avanti

Note:  My full list is fourteen films long but three of the of the other four are reviewed below because of award nominations (The Emigrants, Sounder, Frenzy) leaving just one for the list down at the bottom. (more…)

“I was like wandering all over the flat in pain and sickness, trying to shut out the music and like groaning deep out of my guts, and then on top of the pile of books and papers and all that cal that was on the table in the living-room I viddied what I had to do and what I had wanted to do until those old men in the Public Biblio and then Dim and Billyboy disguised as rozzes stopped me, and that was to do myself in, to snuff it, to blast off for ever out of this wicked and cruel world.” (p 192-193)

My Top 10

  1. A Clockwork Orange
  2. The French Connection
  3. The Last Picture Show
  4. McCabe and Mrs. Miller
  5. The Garden of the Finzi-Continis
  6. The Go-Between
  7. They Might Be Giants
  8. The Conformist

Note:  The only reason this year reaches 10 is because I moved The Go-Between into my list after watching it again.  Still a big drop-off from the Top 5 to the second 5.
Second Note:  I wrote that a couple of months ago.  Then I re-watched Sometimes a Great Notion and Dodes Ka-Den and decided that neither of them actually merited being on the list.  So that dropped my list back down to 8.  Sadly, I didn’t decide this until after reading Sometimes a Great Notion, which I thought was nigh on unreadable. (more…)