Top 10 for 2016

1) Toni Erdmann (dir. Maren Ade)

Ines: Capitalism Eats the Soul, or just a really good comedy about family? Either way, we’ll be hard press to find a film from this decade with a scene as euphoric as the hug in the park.

 

2) Personal Shopper (dir. Oliver Assayas)

Finding refuge from grief meets millennial malaise, all from the abstracted outside of Kristen Stewart (Maureen) who exists only on the periphery of the affluent and glamorous milieu she inhabits as a personal shopper. Temporarily, Maureen can adorn the role of a glamorous young thing by wearing the garments she’s picking up for others, but this only serves as a temporary distraction from the grief of losing her twin brother. Maureen faces the void and goes on to play a ghostly game, but is it reality or more crafted distraction?

 

3) Elle (dir. Paul Verhoeven)

This unflinching excavation of the psychological effects rape has on Michèle Leblanc (Isabelle Huppert at her formidable best) is a densely packed tome on gender, sex and deviant introspection. It’s also really funny.

 

4) A Bridge for Rip Van Winkle (dir. Shunji Iwai) *Featured Image*

Acquiescing to unfulfillment and loneliness in order to meet a societal role, Nanami endures an unbearably cruel life but before reaching an irreparable bottom, she unshackles the fickleness of identity and self and blooms into a woman who wears transcendent cinema on her shoulders with pride.

 

5) Aquarius (dir. Kleber Mendonça Filho)

The titular apartment complex works as a bastion for Carla’s (Sônia Braga) tale of survival, her strength used also as a front for Filho’s caustic takedown of inequity, corruption and lies. Powerful and hypnotic like the waves crashing on the nearby beach, Aquarius may just be the best understated revenge flick of this century.

 

6) Fire at Sea (dir. Gianfranco Rosi)

7) Paterson (dir. Jim Jarmusch)

8) Things to Come (dir. Mia Hansen-Løve)

9) Everybody Wants Some!! (dir. Richard Linklater)

10) Your Name. (dir. Makoto Shinkai)

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