26 September 2009

Skandies: Best Films of the Decade, #18



The Man Who Wasn't There (2001, Joel Coen)
originally placed: #5, 2001.

[NOTE: Audio on clip is out of sync. Sorry, couldn't fix it. Couldn't fix godawful one-sheet either.]

19 comments:

msic said...

You're kidding me.

Robert Fuller said...

Yeah, I'm not in love with these results so far. Two movies I didn't much care for, and one I haven't seen (somehow I haven't seen a Denis film since Beau Travail... they always seem to fly in under my radar). Can't fault the performance category, though.

md'a said...

No. I am not kidding you. Why this result would shock you I have no idea. It's my #2 film of the decade, Theo gave it a 79, it was cstults' #1 film that year, etc.

Froilan said...

This is not surprising. TROUBLE EVERY DAY is, even for someone who put points behind a Denis (albeit from the wrong decade).

msic said...

It makes sense in retrospect but I will still never understand what everyone sees in this film. And it's not like I haven't tried. Seen it four times. Everything about it is just too on the nose, too overwritten, too antiseptic. Pickled in Barbicide if you will.

Oh well, anyone nonplussed by the appearance of Trouble Every Day, here's the movie for you.

md'a said...

The flashback scene is too on the nose? That's arguably the most mysterious moment in the entire Coen canon, and it's the key to the whole movie.

And if ever there were a film that demanded a (superficially) antiseptic approach, this is the one. Spontaneous and alive would have killed it.

Mike Lee, director of Career Girls said...

Okay. Okay. I got this all figured out.

Actors:

1) Naomi Watts, Mulholland Drive
2) Daniel Day Lewis, There Will Be Blood
3) Heath Ledger, The Dark Knight
4) Daniel Day Lewis, Gangs of New York
5) Hafsia Herzi, The Secret of the Grain (crazy shot in the dark)

Films:
1) In the Mood for Love
2) Dogville
3) Silent Light
4) Yi Yi
5) Tropical Malady

Theo said...

Interesting guesses, Mr. Lee. If it helps, I am one of the Skandie voters (sorry, I did not give you points) and I did include Daniel Day Lewis in my actors' ballot - but not for either of the two performances you mention. Inconceivable!

Agree with md'a, disagree with msic on TMWWT. The theme of this movie - that we waste our lives looking for something we don't know, can't define and are not equipped to find out - is so perverse and slippery there's no way it can be "on the nose" imho.

Stephen said...

Sweet movie.

cstults said...

This WAS my #1 for 2001, but a third viewing of it a year or so ago readjusted it to #7 (more tonal missteps than I had remembered). Our #20 film of the decade is currently the top spot. But there's no way you could have known that since the CM Hist is frozen in time.

md'a said...

This WAS my #1 for 2001, but a third viewing of it a year or so ago readjusted it to #7

Obviously I knew that you hadn't voted for it. But—not to give away possible future finalists—"cstults' #1 film for that year" sounded more impressive than "[guy who actually did vote for it]'s #3 film for that year."

Our #20 film of the decade is currently the top spot.

If so, that's an error. TMWWT is 2001; Gerry premiered at Sundance 2002.

Jeff said...

Trouble Every Day is so awesome.

cstults said...

You're right. My #1 film for 2001 that came it at #19, not #20.

So far, this is a survey of the best films from 2001-2002. Those were the days.

Nictate said...

This film blew me away when I saw it on the big screen. I need to watch it again to see if I feel the same now.

The Coens' films have almost always struck me as being two steps ahead of everyone else. I remember feeling that way about TMWWT. Oh Brother, Where Art Thou? and Burn After Reading are two others that fit the two-steps-ahead category, in my opinion.

I once read that while true artists are often described as being ahead of their time, they're actually the only ones truly *in* their time -- making the observations and interpretations others are too caught up in distractions to absorb until time has passed. That's how I feel about the Coens and, even more so, Lars von Trier.

Ryan said...

Some guesses, in case a "Beat MuseMalade" nerd game ever gets started.

Movie:

01. Mulholland Dr.
02. In the Mood for Love
03. Memento
04. Dogville
05. Yi Yi
06. The New World
07. 25th Hour
08. Punchdrunk Love
09. Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind
10. Kill Bill, Vol. 1

Performances

01. Naomi Watts, Mulholland Dr.
02. Heath Ledger, Brokeback Mountain
03. Daniel Day-Lewis, There Will Be Blood
04. Denzel Washington, Training Day
05. Campbell Scott, Roger Dodger
06. Johnny Depp, Pirates of the Caribbean
07. Uma Thurman, Kill Bill Vo. 1
08. Ryan Gosling, Half Nelson
09. Laura Linney, You Can Count On Me.
10. Christian Bale, American Psycho (or perhaps Pascal Greggory in Raja or Tilda Swinton in Julia.)

Totally boneheaded of me to have omitted Pascal Greggory's Gabrielle turn.

Ryan said...

Btw, while I try to be objective about my guesses, perhaps I betray a tinge of bias here. Call me a googly-eyed Icelandic naif for possessing a fundamentally optimistic view of humanity, given humankind's cruelty through our history, but I still hold out hope that less than five Skandies voters are afflicted with the sad mental affliction that causes them to vote for Dancer in the Dark in any positive capacity, much less in a Best of Decade poll.

Nictate said...

Viewed TMWWT again. Thrilling B/W imagery (each face is a universe), finely tuned performances and deadpan brilliance, FTW.

Interesting that Scar-Jo's in this and #17. She's terrific in both.

Victor said...

Um ... I gave DANCER points in one of the two categories.

Did Villani vote in the decade poll?

Adam Villani said...

No, Villani was unaware that the poll was happening.

I'm not sure whether this was his own fault for not paying attention, or whether D'Angelo dropped him from the list.