The Friday (1/22/2021)

Notturno (Super LTD)

My piece for the Scarecrow blog this week, and etc.

Notturno. “There’s also a duck hunter who rides his scooter out to the edges of the wetlands, clambers in his canoe, and goes night-shooting. Except this nocturnal Nimrod has his quiet pastime interrupted by the periodic pop-pop-pop of what sounds like machine-gun fire, as the sky beyond him spreads out in vivid orange from oil derricks in the distance.”

At Parallax View, webmaster Sean Axmaker has gathered the 10-Best lists from a group of Seattle-area (mostly) critics, including my ranking. That one’s here.

2020 Ten Best Movies


Orion Lee, John Magaro: First Cow (Alysson Riggs/A24)

For the record: It’s been a weird year. Nevertheless, here’s my 2020 Ten Best list, with annotations, for the Scarecrow blog. And the titles below.

1. First Cow (Kelly Reichardt)

2. Nomadland (Chloé Zhao)

3. Gunda (Victor Kossakovsky)

4. Fourteen (Dan Sallitt)

5. Lovers Rock (Steve McQueen)

6. Never Rarely Sometimes Always (Eliza Hittman)

7. Ammonite (Francis Lee)

8. Beanpole (Kantemir Balagov) and Promising Young Woman (Emerald Fennell)

10. French Exit (Azazel Jacobs)

Indiewire poll addendum


Yesilcay & Ziolkowska: The Edge of Heaven

The Indiwire poll is out, and my ballot is a truly lame offering. My explanation has to do with snowfall on deadline day (Seattle is paralyzed by the lightest dusting, and this was more than that), the bus system, and an early screening of Che, all 24 hours of it, or whatever it is. In the event, I found myself in the back office of the Seven Gables theater, trying to log on to the Indiewire website and remember my list from memory as the movie was about to begin. This is why the ballot published at has only nine titles in its top ten, and only one performer out of a possible ten. My bad.

The link to the published ballot is here, but the full-length, uncounted version follows.

Ten best:

  1. The Edge of Heaven
  2. The Duchess of Langeais
  3. The Romance of Astrea and Celadon
  4. The Dark Knight
  5. Wendy and Lucy
  6. Married Life
  7. Priceless
  8. In Bruges
  9. Forever
  10. Let the Right One In

Best Lead Performance

  1. Pierce Brosnan, Married Life
  2. Brendan Gleeson, In Bruges
  3. Dore Mann, Frownland
  4. Melisso Leo, Frozen River
  5. Mick Jagger, Shine a Light

Best Supporting Performance

  1. Nugul Yesilcay, The Edge of Heaven
  2. Patrycia Ziolkowska, The Edge of Heaven
  3. Peter Macdissi, Towelhead
  4. Tea Leoni, Ghost Town
  5. James Franco, Pineapple Express

Director is Fatih Akin, Screenplay is Eric Rohmer, and Documentary is Forever, Heddy Honigmann’s beautiful study of Pere Lachaise cemetery and the people around it.

That’s the Indiewire ballot. Now I might tinker with the ordering and possibly see a couple of movies on DVD before doing a list for the Herald, so that’s not the final word from me just yet.