Friday, July 31, 2009


Link time: Ebert has a blog entry up that flirts with an idea I raised in an article I wrote (found here at Christian Toto's blog). His point, that movie lists are propaganda designed to tell people what they should like, is an interesting and I believe largely accurate one.

That said, this list is interesting. "The Night of the Hunter" at the top. "Rio Bravo" at number 10. "The Magnificent Ambersons" seven places ahead of "Citizen Kane." No Keaton, one Chaplin, no Lynch, "Barry Lyndon" as the Kubrick, but room for Burnett's "Killer of Sheep" and Boorman's "Point Blank." I think seemingly strange choices on greatest movies lists reflect that the pros selecting the titles like to change things up frequently and vote in ways that they initially believe are against the grain but are in fact in tandem with their colleagues. I remember in the 1990's where "Birth of a Nation" was the best D.W. Griffith film instead of "Intolerance," when "Vertigo" was notable Hitchcock but not the greatest film ever made, when Chaplin was the silent film star and no one my age had ever heard of Buster Keaton.

I'm just waiting for the next decade so we can see what films from the past two. Those who know me won't be surprised to know that I'm rooting for "Casino," "The Big Lebowski," "American Psycho," "Memento," and "Sideways" to populate some lists.

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