Author Topic: Top Discoveries of 2016  (Read 2099 times)


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Top Discoveries of 2016
« on: December 31, 2016, 12:23:45 PM »
A favorite Annual Thread

What were the twenty best films you saw for the first time in 2016?  Not the Filmspot-eligible stuff.  The older films you just caught up with this year.

Jeff Schroeck
Sam the Cinema Snob
StudentOFilm and part 2

Link to 2008 discoveries.
Link to 2009 discoveries.
Link to 2010 discoveries.
Link to 2011 discoveries.
Link to 2012 discoveries.
Link to 2013 discoveries.
Link to 2014 discoveries.
Link to 2015 discoveries.

« Last Edit: February 03, 2017, 08:57:20 PM by 1SO »


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Re: Top Discoveries of 2016
« Reply #1 on: December 31, 2016, 01:05:25 PM »
1. Victim
2. In The Company of Men
3. One Day in September
4. Orphan
5. Pretty Woman
6. Notting Hill
7. Wild Tales
8. The Great Beauty
9. Sapphire
10. 3 Idiots


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Re: Top Discoveries of 2016
« Reply #2 on: December 31, 2016, 01:09:36 PM »
Man, filtering my Criticker to movies made prior to 2014, I barely saw any. A top 20 would have to include films I didn't like very much. I've got eight worth mentioning, half of which are from Top 100 Club:

1. About Elly
2. It's Such a Beautiful Day
3. Lost, Lost, Lost
4. Hud
5. The Central Park Five
6. Stormy Weather
7. Shallow Grave
8. Wake in Fright

Everything else is lime green or worse. Things sure have changed for me, movie-wise.


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Re: Top Discoveries of 2016
« Reply #3 on: December 31, 2016, 01:52:18 PM »
1. Lonesome (1928)

A film bursting with energy and heart. Half the scenes are packed with extras whose motion fills the screen with countless details, like a hyperactive Where's Waldo.

2. The Red Shoes
Watched this twice within a month and is probably already top 20 for me.

3. Sunrise
Didn't like the story, but the imagery - wow.

4. Memories of Murder
Great crime drama.

5. Meshes of the Afternoon

Loved this hypnotic, circular short.

6. Hold Me While I'm Naked
I'd put this up with the best Woody Allen.

7. The Passion of Joan of Arc
Testament to the power of the close-up.

8. Come Drink With Me

Simply awesome.

9. The One-Armed Swordsman
Almost as awesome.

10. A Touch of Zen

Transcendentally awesome.

11. My Neighbor Totoro


12. Kiki's Delivery Service

13. Don't Bother to Knock

Monroe gives a hell of a performance.

14. The Godfather part 2

A very good continuation of the story though not in the same ballpark as the first in my opinion.

15. The Ref
Laughed out loud numerous times. Re-watchability is high.

16. The Cable Guy

Carrey gives a hell of a performance.
« Last Edit: December 31, 2016, 05:38:56 PM by philip918 »
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Re: Top Discoveries of 2016
« Reply #4 on: December 31, 2016, 04:31:52 PM »
This thread begs for more screenshots.

I think I'd love how awkward it'd be, or how awkward it should be.

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Re: Top Discoveries of 2016
« Reply #5 on: December 31, 2016, 05:05:46 PM »
My list will have them. Per usual, I don't work on the list until tomorrow...just in case I get stuck in a time loop and discover 20 new films in an evening.


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Re: Top Discoveries of 2016
« Reply #6 on: December 31, 2016, 05:30:01 PM »
This thread begs for more screenshots.

That's why I haven't posted yet. I have the order and the links, now I need to complete the pitch with some visual aids.


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Re: Top Discoveries of 2016
« Reply #7 on: December 31, 2016, 06:01:07 PM »
It should be well known by now that I am anti-screenshot.


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Re: Top Discoveries of 2016
« Reply #8 on: December 31, 2016, 08:03:24 PM »
5. Meshes of the Afternoon

Loved this hypnotic, circular short.

That's among my discoveries as well, together with her other shorts and a pretty great doc (In the Mirror of Maya Deren).


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Re: Top Discoveries of 2016
« Reply #9 on: January 01, 2017, 01:42:09 AM »
This thread provides some great recommendations and it proves that I'm not even close to scraping the bottom of the barrel. Many believe that I watch too many movies, while enjoying few. Also, I've already seen all the Great ones. There's nothing left to Discover. Here are experiences that say otherwise.

1. Deanna Durbin
In 2015, I got my first taste of Durbin's musical comedy talent in One Hundred Men and a Girl. This year, she was the Queen of Music of May with 7 films and a lot of great memories.

1b. King Creole (1958)
Not worth its own entry, but this is the Elvis film that completely surprised me. A drama directed by Michael Curtiz with a slimy supporting turn by Walter Matthau, the one really good Elvis performance I've seen and a killer opening song, my favorite by The King that isn't a standard.

2. Mr. Skeffington (1944)
Bette Davis does a remarkable physical transformation, equal to her acting talent, while Claude Rains makes the movie a double act with quiet dignity and charm. Little seen because the film runs 145 minutes, but it's that last 45 minutes that's the best part. A costume drama that plays like a thriller, much like The Heiress.

3. Virtue (1932)
Typically, the older the film the more you have to accept the theatrical style of acting. Virtue is pre-code, but the raw emotions sting as if it were set in modern times. Starring Carole Lombard at her toughest, Pat O’Brien at his most vulnerable and Ward Bond, stealing scenes like always.

4. Paris is Burning (1991)
From the Group LGBT June Marathon, a film I've been hyped about for over 20 years and it did not disappoint. An excellent look at the LGBT community, how they support and snipe each other just like any other family.

5. Comrades: Almost a Love Story (1996)
From 1990s Far East Bracket, a dance of fantasy, reality, pop culture and love with a strong sense of direction and terrific performances.

6. Cash on Demand (1961)
Looking for Christmas movies, I discovered this gem of a crime story starring Peter Cushing, playing sensationally against type. Tense, clever and quick.

7. The Long Gray Line (1955)
John Ford captures life in all its humor and heartbreak, with a sentimental style that you can only find in movies. I never think of Ford as much of a mushy director, but this is his mushiest, which is why I love it so much. Stellar work by Tyrone Power, Maureen O’Hara, Donald Crisp and Ward Bond.

7b. Abandon Ship (1957)
After hearing for years that Tyrone Power was a weak ‘pretty boy’ actor, these two films proved all that wrong. Looking and commanding the screen like George Clooney, this is a very interesting “what if” story involving survivors from a torpedoed luxury liner. Better than Lifeboat.

8. Arise My Love (1940)
Some classic Hollywood. The script by Billy Wilder and Charles Brackett bounces between comedy, drama, romance, adventure and war propaganda. Stars Claudette Colbert and Ray Milland have no problem modulating their performances under the direction of Mitchell Leisen.

9. The Temptation of Dr. Antonio (1962)
Short film from Boccaccio 70, directed by Federico Fellini, who I usually don’t like. This time I liked it a lot, and for all the reasons people usually like his films.

10. Nightmare (1964)
The title you knew was going to make this list because I mention it about every other week. The jewel of my current Horror Marathon, my favorite version of the “let’s make her crazy” story and one of the best films from Hammer Horror.

10b. The Blood on Satan’s Claw (1971)
Runner-Up in that Horror Marathon is so much better than its title. A portrayal of evil, unstoppable because it’s so matter-of-fact. Belongs in the conversation with The Wicker Man and the White Ribbon, though I admit it’s not as good as either of those.

11. The Goodbye Girl (1977)
Top 100 Discovery from ses. More of a re-discovery, for screenwriter Neil Simon’s clever dialogue and the simple beauty of watching great actors who know how to use it.

12. The Beaches of Agnes (2008)
I keep promising myself that I need to do an Agnes Varda Marathon. This film gave me a sample platter of her work, with hints as to why such a Marathon would be enormously rewarding.

13. Broadway (1942)
No film I watched last year was as deep in my comfort zone as this. Dancers against gangsters in a New York City nightclub, starring George Raft, Broderick Crawford, Pat O’Brien, Edward Brophy and S.Z. Sakall.

14.  Gigantics (1999)

15. Miracle in Milan (1951)

16. Bordertown (1935)

17. Europa Report (2013)

18. The Innkeepers (2011)

19. Director Tetsuya Nakashima

20. Union Depot (1932)
I never wrote about this pre-code Discovery but it’s a wonderful ensemble crime film starring Douglas Fairbanks Jr., Joan Blondell, Alan Hale and Frank McHugh.