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500 <400 2020 RESULTS! Sponsored by Torgo

500<400, Favourite 1001 movies, Doubling the Canon, Film World Cup and many other votes
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brokenface
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#921

Post by brokenface »

AdamH wrote: October 15th, 2020, 6:37 pm All films from last year's top 10 made it (with one slipping to 16). This is likely to change significantly next year. 8 of the top 10 have 300+ checks.

#1-336 checks-Kocár do Vídne
#2-378 checks-Doro no kawa
#3-301 checks-Shura
#5-399 checks-Happy End
#6-382 checks-Akai tenshi
#8-302 checks-Az ötödik pecsét
#9-373 checks-Przesluchanie
#10-361 checks-As I Was Moving Ahead Occasionally I Saw Brief Glimpses of Beauty

Happy End will definitely be gone. Likely to be some more as well.
I'd guess 350+ tends to be in danger. All it would take is 1 person per week checking it, but I guess even that's too fast for some of these.

Once those lot are gone, Birth Certificate & Rapture are going to be battling for #1 for years probably.
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#922

Post by beavis »

thanks PA!
I'm up one check compared to the previous list, but I also checked the new short My ne mozhem zhit bez kosmosa during the countdown, so I feel I just remained on equal checks. Usually I lose quite a few checks though, so this is new for me! I feel the many returning movies to the list has been part of this, although I have seen quite a few of the very new entries too.

A few interesting discussions during the countdown too, this was fun!
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#923

Post by AdamH »

Also, thanks Torgo for posting so much in this thread and making it feel so much more lively. I enjoyed your comments.
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#924

Post by Onderhond »

Cippenham wrote: October 15th, 2020, 7:48 pm Far too many Asian and obscure films for me, but I will try to see a few especially in the top 10.
Hah, if you put it like that it should be right up my alley.

Seen: 63/500 (13%)
Highest unchecked: Kocár do Vídne (#1)
Number of favorites: 14/63 (22%)
Highest favorite: Tokyo Tribe (#46)
Number of dislikes: 4/63 (6%)
Highest dislike: Lu bian ye can (#38)
Unique officials: 92/500 (18%)

"Big" jump up in favorites compared to last year (from 6 to 14). Also saw a bit more (49 on the previous list).
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#925

Post by Torgo »

You know, the cool thing about Rapture (1965) is that Hidden Gems is its only official list. Given that is has less than 200 checks, you can assume that the major part of its popularity here is drawn from the poll itself (or else, ICM users recommending it to each other). Also if you look at the progress it has made:
History: 4751252117682←NA
To make it to #4 by this .. not bad. As an US-film! Speak about hidden.

The next film to be featured on no other official list is The Incident (1967) at #23 and monty's short at #24. After that, only Tokyo Tribe at #46.
I guess the exposure through this list, at least in the top ranks, does achieve something.
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#926

Post by Torgo »

Quite a few new official checks, too many for me to count and copy (like 38, maybe?). And even a few of my favorite nominations made it, yay! I am glad to see Monday, Der freie Wille and a Takashi Miike film (Big Bang Love, Juvenile A) become official also due to my participation. :sweat: Keep that in mind for 11/3: Your vote matters!


I count 57 documentaries in our list - certainly felt like that. Of course, many of them aren't exactly BBC wildlife documentaries but various forms of non-fictional (or are they? ..) filmmaking, among them also short films and quite experimental ones.
Still, I like to separate them from our standard, narrative films with actors.
Last edited by Torgo on October 15th, 2020, 8:33 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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#927

Post by Fergenaprido »

OldAle1 wrote: October 15th, 2020, 1:54 pm Narcissistic yes - elitist and snobbish, I'm not so sure. He came from humble beginnings and I don't think he ever lost sight of that, and his life was more the bohemian Brooklyn type than the Woody Allen upper-East-side variety; there's a big difference between those who hang around and promote other artists - real artists who are not in it mostly for the money - and the poseurs and comfortable, wealthy middlebrow folks who want to be accepted by "the Academy", whatever that may be. I don't think Mekas ever pretended to be anything he wasn't. I DO think he made the same mistake (in interviews and perhaps in his writings, very little of which I've read) of assuming that a larger number of people might follow what he and Kenneth Anger and Brakhage and others were doing; Rosenbaum does this over and over as well, assuming that large masses of people actually would like difficult/avant garde/abstract/foreign art if only they got the proper exposure and if only the media gave it equal time, and capitalism didn't destroy everything. I just don't see that; virtually 100% of all living people have grown up believing that film=narrative or, very occasionally, straightforward documentation, and getting people from Star Wars to Mekas - my own journey and that of plenty of people on this forum - is very difficult and very, very, very few people want to tread that path. Not because it's hard or weird but because they just don't care, they're satisfied with what they already watch/hear/read/etc. Why try the gourmet burger, or the veggie burger, if I like McDonalds? So that's where these guys are being elitist - not so much in damning the Michael Bays of this world or their fans, but in believing that art is important enough to a large enough number of people that it could and should matter more than it does. Maybe someday, in a more enlightened society, but we're sure nowhere near that in America.
I never got the sense of elitism or snobbishness or even narcissism from the Mekas films I've seen, but maybe those are the more accessible ones. This write-up, however, reeks of all three and I'm not clear if this is your opinion or if you're paraphrasing the opinions of others. It's very condescending to posit that difficult/avant garde/abstract/foreign art is inherently better than narrative or other film genres/movements and assuming that those who do not like/get/enjoy those films are unenlightened. The idea that certain types of art/film are inherently better than others infuriates me, and I reject it as categorically false. Different folks appreciate different types of art/film, and I don't understand why people feel the need to constantly disparage those whose taste is different from one's own.
Cippenham wrote: October 15th, 2020, 7:48 pm I have only seen 114 and 4 from the top 10. Far too many Asian and obscure films for me, but I will try to see a few especially in the top 10.
Are you complaining that a list of little seen films that is also known as Hidden Gems has too many obscure films? <_<

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What were you expecting? :lol:
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#928

Post by Onderhond »

Torgo wrote: October 15th, 2020, 8:27 pm I am glad to see Monday
Cheers for supporting Monday! Really glad with that one and hopefully it'll push people to see more Tanaka.
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#929

Post by AdamH »

Torgo wrote: October 15th, 2020, 8:19 pm You know, the cool thing about Rapture (1965) is that Hidden Gems is its only official list. Given that is has less than 200 checks, you can assume that the major part of its popularity here is drawn from the poll itself (or else, ICM users recommending it to each other). Also if you look at the progress it has made:
History: 4751252117682←NA
To make it to #4 by this .. not bad. As an US-film! Speak about hidden.

The next film to be featured on no other official list is The Incident (1967) at #23 and monty's short at #24. After that, only Tokyo Tribe at #46.
I guess the exposure through this list, at least in the top ranks, does achieve something.
I watched Rapture earlier this year purely because of 500<400 and put it at #2 in my list for the poll.
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#930

Post by AdamH »

I'd be interested in hearing the story behind why people voted for their top films and if it was because of the forum.

My #1 film for this poll is Kradetzat na praskovi. I watched it in October 2012 because a Bulgarian girl at uni recommended it to me. It then first appeared in 500<400 in September 2013 but I'm not sure how it got popular on here. It's never been in the top 100 and has actually fallen recently.
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#931

Post by Onderhond »

The first entry from my list is #16: Big Bang Love, Juvenile A by Takashi Miike, arguably his most arthouse-friendly film.
The most interesting film I found (or was reminded of) through this list is Assassination Nation, so myeah :)
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#932

Post by OldAle1 »

Fergenaprido wrote: October 15th, 2020, 8:30 pm
OldAle1 wrote: October 15th, 2020, 1:54 pm Narcissistic yes - elitist and snobbish, I'm not so sure. He came from humble beginnings and I don't think he ever lost sight of that, and his life was more the bohemian Brooklyn type than the Woody Allen upper-East-side variety; there's a big difference between those who hang around and promote other artists - real artists who are not in it mostly for the money - and the poseurs and comfortable, wealthy middlebrow folks who want to be accepted by "the Academy", whatever that may be. I don't think Mekas ever pretended to be anything he wasn't. I DO think he made the same mistake (in interviews and perhaps in his writings, very little of which I've read) of assuming that a larger number of people might follow what he and Kenneth Anger and Brakhage and others were doing; Rosenbaum does this over and over as well, assuming that large masses of people actually would like difficult/avant garde/abstract/foreign art if only they got the proper exposure and if only the media gave it equal time, and capitalism didn't destroy everything. I just don't see that; virtually 100% of all living people have grown up believing that film=narrative or, very occasionally, straightforward documentation, and getting people from Star Wars to Mekas - my own journey and that of plenty of people on this forum - is very difficult and very, very, very few people want to tread that path. Not because it's hard or weird but because they just don't care, they're satisfied with what they already watch/hear/read/etc. Why try the gourmet burger, or the veggie burger, if I like McDonalds? So that's where these guys are being elitist - not so much in damning the Michael Bays of this world or their fans, but in believing that art is important enough to a large enough number of people that it could and should matter more than it does. Maybe someday, in a more enlightened society, but we're sure nowhere near that in America.
I never got the sense of elitism or snobbishness or even narcissism from the Mekas films I've seen, but maybe those are the more accessible ones. This write-up, however, reeks of all three and I'm not clear if this is your opinion or if you're paraphrasing the opinions of others. It's very condescending to posit that difficult/avant garde/abstract/foreign art is inherently better than narrative or other film genres/movements and assuming that those who do not like/get/enjoy those films are unenlightened. The idea that certain types of art/film are inherently better than others infuriates me, and I reject it as categorically false. Different folks appreciate different types of art/film, and I don't understand why people feel the need to constantly disparage those whose taste is different from one's own.
I thought I was pretty clear but I guess not - no, I personally don't see him as (particularly) elitist or snobbish, and only narcissistic in the sense that he's focusing on himself - he isn't saying he's better than other people, look at me because I'm the coolest. No what I'm getting at is that he, Rosenbaum, and some others seem to think that avant-garde and difficult films would be much more popular if only people knew about them - Rosenbaum does this all the time. And my own experience is that no, very few people would ever be interested in this stuff. I'm with you - I don't believe that more difficult or more obscure or non-narrative=better - and I don't know that Rosenbaum, or Mekas, or even Godard would say so, it's just that they think the reasons why people don't like it/aren't interested in it have more to do with commerce/capitalism/marketing than with the basic human impulse to stick to the familiar, the known, the comforting. Most people don't experience art as a way to better understand the human condition or to deeply probe into challenging spaces - they experience it as simple enjoyment after a hard day or work or school, or as a fun hobby. And I don't think very many people want to go into it to the depth that many of us do, and very little would get them to do so - and that's fine, and we should neither be upset that they don't want to watch Mekas or Godard or Brakhage, or that the world doesn't promote such work the way it promotes Spielberg. Even in countries which were or are less market-driven than America the majority of people don't want to be challenged all the time; I doubt most Russians were eagerly awaiting the next Tarkovsky film. One of my favorite moments in Makhmalbaf's A Moment of Innocence is when he's trying to talk about Iranian cinema with some ordinary citizen, and the guy just wants to talk about Kirk Douglas. That's the reality of the world.

And I think it's the very, very rare individual that takes an intellectual approach to everything in life - I'm sure many of us have "elite" film tastes but watch dumb TV or read Harry Potter (me!) or eat fast food or have Old Navy clothing tastes. So being uber-snobbish about everything is really just telling everybody that you've decided to limit yourself and stay in an ivory tower all the time. And I think most people that do that are probably internet nerds living in basements, not successful filmmakers or critics or painters or writers.
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#933

Post by Fergenaprido »

AdamH wrote: October 15th, 2020, 8:39 pm I'd be interested in hearing the story behind why people voted for their top films and if it was because of the forum.

My #1 film for this poll is Kradetzat na praskovi. I watched it in October 2012 because a Bulgarian girl at uni recommended it to me. It then first appeared in 500<400 in September 2013 but I'm not sure how it got popular on here. It's never been in the top 100 and has actually fallen recently.
Most of the films at the top of my list I didn't see because of the forum... and most of those didn't make the final list :D
From my top 20, only #7 (Abandoned Road), #12 (Fifth Seal), and #13 (The Incident) were forum films, and incidentally all three were world cup films (though I saw Road when it was first shared, before it was chosen for the WC). The rest of my top 20 is mostly gay films, Canadian films, or gay Canadian films. My number one, Custody, I saw at the annual French Film Festival here in KL.

For my films ranked 21-50, more forum films show up in that range (9), with the rest being a mix of longtime favourites, movie night films, and more glorious (Canadian) gay films.
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#934

Post by OldAle1 »

AdamH wrote: October 15th, 2020, 8:39 pm I'd be interested in hearing the story behind why people voted for their top films and if it was because of the forum.

My #1 film for this poll is Kradetzat na praskovi. I watched it in October 2012 because a Bulgarian girl at uni recommended it to me. It then first appeared in 500<400 in September 2013 but I'm not sure how it got popular on here. It's never been in the top 100 and has actually fallen recently.
My #1 is Take Care of My Cat and it has nothing to do with this forum - I saw it for the first time in 2006, it's been one of my favorite films ever since, it got me into Korean cinema and really helped to increase my interest in contemporary East Asian cinema generally (though I'm still an amateur compared to many here), and I've watched it around 7 times to date. It was #2 on my list behind Out 1 until this year when that film graduated out.

The only film in my top 50 that stands out as having anything to do with this forum is Reality's Invisible which I saw because PdA and others when crazy over it. Might be one or two others but doesn't look like it at first glance.
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#935

Post by beavis »

Rengoku eroica (#99)
La vie nouvelle (#500)
Cosmos (still on 0 lists)
Cavalo Dinheiro (#102)
César et Rosalie (still on 0 lists!?!?!?!?)

This is the top5 of my nominations list, only La Vie Nouvelle is a new entry.

I watched 2 of these when they first came out in cinema (at the IFFR actually, they were not wider release movies) and one as soon as it hit bluray (because Cosmos wasn't released in cinema's at all over here). Rengoku Eroica I saw at the mindblowing Yoshida retrospective of the IFFR in 2010, it seems to me this was before his movies were discovered elsewhere/on this forum. Then Cesar et Rosalie, I also watched in cinema(!), the occasion was a retrospective of Yves Montand and Simone Signoret movies. Might have been my first Sautet movie too, amazing discovery. Can't understand why this movie is so overlooked. But no, none are discoveries made through this list or ICM in a broader sense, including this forum.
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#936

Post by PeacefulAnarchy »

My top 6:
I for India (2005) Watched because of the BFI doc list, so ICM inspired but nothing to do with the forum.
Be with Me (2005) Watched it I think for the first conquer the world challenge on this forum in 2012. Not sure how I found it, but Singapore options were pretty limited.
...No Lies (1973) I watched this because if was a short on the NFR before the forum/ICM
The Decisive Moment (1973) I watched this because someone nominated it for DtC in 2014. I don't know who.
Seventeen (1983) watched this because it's on the S&S doc list. May have been for a challenge?
Dying at Grace (2003) Watched it because of the Eclipse set and someone somewhere saying it was worth watching. Possibly Pretentious Hipster, but not sure. It was on this list already, so maybe that was part of it? It's the only one of the six to make this list.

Apparently the top of my list is doc heavy.
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#937

Post by blocho »

AdamH wrote: October 15th, 2020, 6:17 pm
Lammetje wrote: October 15th, 2020, 6:08 pm #1( - , #1) Hababam Sınıfı (1975)
Spoiler
Image
Directed by: Ertem Eğilmez
(14200 Pts, 142 Votes) , Top 1–10–50: 142–142–142
History: 1111111←1
iCheckMovies: 399 Checks , 399 Favourites , 208 Official lists
List of Voters:
Everyone (1)
Still funny :lol:
This joke has been made so many times, and it still makes me laugh.
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#938

Post by Torgo »

Uh, I was confident that I had one or another of the <400 favorites at the top of my list. Turns out virtually the only one I got to know through the poll and hold in high esteem is Muddy River (which I voted for at #6). :blink: The rest of my votes is compiled of too many Asian films :P , a few German hits and various random stuff. I remember that I liked the <400 films I discovered through this list and used to vote for some, but as it seems, most of them were driven out since 2016 and got just too popular. :)

(Now I need to look up the 2013-version or 2015/16 at least ..)
AdamH wrote: October 15th, 2020, 8:12 pm Also, thanks Torgo for posting so much in this thread and making it feel so much more lively. I enjoyed your comments.
:hug:
That's flattering. I really hope the frequency and content wasn't too much of an annoyance for most of our readers and that I could provide some info or entertainment.
Of course I would like to see many more people engage and take part in the thread to get more opinions, impression and knowledge. Why do so many choose to stay silent? Hm. For example, there were many titles with #1 votes (or top 3, top 5, say, high-ranked votes) without much feedback.
Then again .. a fair share of our user base and participants have done this poll many times before and discussed particular films and directors to death maybe already years ago. That's what happens in forums. Happily, many of us see many, many new films over the time so it doesn't get too boring. :thumbsup:
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#939

Post by AdamH »

Yes, I think if you look back at 2013, the results threads got far more comments. I guess it gets harder over the years to add comments on the films that regularly make the list but it certainly would be nice to have more comments on the lesser known films.
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#940

Post by Armoreska »

both Rapture and Shura come from humble beginnings
he or A. or Armo or any

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currently working towards a vegan/free world + thru such film lists: GODARD, r/antinatalism recommends,..
the rest
ANARCHISTS, ANIMAL RIGHTS, Assisted suicide, Existential films, SOCIALIST CINEMA (an amalgamation of lists), Feminist lists, various GSSRM lists (aka LGBTQ+), 2010s bests, Visual Effects nominees, kid-related stuff, great animes (mini-serie or feature), very 80s movies, mah huge sci-fi list, ENVIRO, remarkable Silent Films and Pre-Code (exploring 1925 atm) and every shorts and docu list I'm aware of and
/forum.icmforum.com/viewtopic.php?f=1&t=1434
and "Gordon" Liu Chia-Hui/Liu Chia-Liang and Yuen Woo-ping and "Sammo" Hung Kam-bo
imaginary awards | youtube channels | complaint lounge | explain how big a fan of slavery you are here, ..viewtopic.php?f=12&t=1535 and here: ..viewtopic.php?f=12&t=4484
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#941

Post by Onderhond »

Looking at my entire list (383 films), discovery comes basically in 4 different forms (in order of importance):

1/ random torrent offering
2/ because I liked film X by director Y
2/ random streaming offering
4/ ICM (1 film - Baby Bump)

From my top 6, 5 films were found through (1), 1 film found through (2)
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#942

Post by zuma »

Armoreska wrote: October 15th, 2020, 9:59 pm both Rapture and Shura come from humble beginnings
If I remember correctly, Shura became popular on the Forum from Art relentlessly promoting it.
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#943

Post by AdamH »

Armoreska wrote: October 15th, 2020, 9:59 pm both Rapture and Shura come from humble beginnings
Yep. Neither were even in the list in the first three editions.
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#944

Post by PGonzalez »

I don't have a ranked list, but out of the 103 films I voted for, there are 9 which I saw as a direct consequence of the forum:

- 4 due to the WC (Chiyari Fuji, Pirosmani, Oi Voskoi, Egy erkölcsös éjszaka)
- 1 which was picked for me by NathanTreadway in one of those posts where you trade recs (Mossafer)
- 2 due to 500<400 (Happy End and Baron Prásil)
- 2 due to the ICMFF (Hao ji le and The Seen and Unseen)

So this forum clearly played a part in introducing me to some phenomenal films I wouldn't otherwise have seen!
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#945

Post by Torgo »

Looked up some of my posts from ancient times. I mainly discovered Letter Never Sent (1960) due to our poll and it has twice the maximum allowed votes today and 3000 IMDb ratings. One that got lucky :)
Lol, even this (The Crazy Page (1926)) used to be eligible. 1000 checks now. And my other favorite Japanese short of all time, Cat Soup! 900 checks now. But those weren't related to the <400 exercise for me.
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#946

Post by Teproc »

Most of the films I'm voting for are either things I saw in theaters in the past five years (particularly French films but not only), and relatively well-known French films from the 70s and prior which just don't have many checks. Plus a few oddities like Beloved and Historias extraordinarias. None of them are things I saw because of ICM, though Kaili Blues has become a bit of an ICM Forum darling now I suppose, with it being in the top 100 here. My #1 is Léa Fehner's Les ogres, which is in the first category (recent French film I saw in theaters) and stars Adèle Haenel (though it's very much an ensemble film) and is about a traveling theatre and the tumultuous relationships of the people in it who form a weird, incestuous and loud family. I found it really touching (especially the final scene), but it has that "spending a lot of time with people who are not that likable" problem which puts many people off.
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#947

Post by Dolwphin »

It is a shame that Walden [Diaries, Notes and Sketches] didn't make the list. It is one of my favorite films, I even dedicated a semester to dissecting it for my BA-degree in Film Studies. :wub:

Capitalism is the root of all evil, including the fact that Jonas Mekas is denied his righteous spot IMDb Top 250. People having other preferences is a result of capitalist hegemony, socialization and propaganda. People lacking the mental energy to process Film Art after a days hard work is a function of Capitalism. Mekas himself is a revolutionary anti-bourgeoisie amateur fighting against professional materialist Hollywood. :thumbsup:
Top 100 | Top 250

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#948

Post by Torgo »

Teproc wrote: October 15th, 2020, 10:42 pm My #1 is Léa Fehner's Les ogres, which is in the first category (recent French film I saw in theaters) and stars Adèle Haenel (though it's very much an ensemble film) and is about a traveling theatre and the tumultuous relationships of the people in it who form a weird, incestuous and loud family. I found it really touching (especially the final scene), but it has that "spending a lot of time with people who are not that likable" problem which puts many people off.
Oh, people are enamoured of Portrait... (2019) and, as with many critics, it has climbed our top charts; you might lure somebody into your Ogres with this information.
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#949

Post by Ebbywebby »

I haven't seen any of the major Mekas films. I can't say the sound of them appeals much to me, despite my experimental bent.

I'm at 163/500, down 23 from last year's poll. Which must mean I gained 17, but lost 40. I think Little Murders, The Last of Sheila, Coup d'Etat, Diabel and From the Life of Marionettes are all on my "favorite unofficial checks" list, so I'll have to delete them now that they've gone official. I think I added Last of Sheila last year, after it dropped off this same poll.

Is this the complete list of films turning unofficial?

A Wedding 1978
La vendedora de rosas 1998 — a.k.a. The Rose Seller
Will Penny 1967
Simindis kundzuli 2014 — a.k.a. Corn Island
Le couperet 2005 — a.k.a. The Ax
L'étrange couleur des larmes de ton corps 2013 — a.k.a. The Strange Color of Your Body's Tears
Rawhide 1951
The Exquisite Corpus 2015
Metro Manila 2013
Lawn Dogs 1997
This World, Then the Fireworks 1997
Light Is Calling 2004
Now You Tell One 1926
À l'ombre de la canaille bleue 1986 — a.k.a. In the Shadow of the Blue Rascal
It's Love I'm After 1937
The Visit 1964
Joe 1970
The Lost Skeleton of Cadavra 2001
L'amour à mort 1984 — a.k.a. Love Unto Death
Herutâ sukerutâ 2012 — a.k.a. Helter Skelter
Band of Angels 1957
Show Me a Hero 2015
Last edited by Ebbywebby on October 16th, 2020, 12:16 am, edited 1 time in total.
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#950

Post by Lammetje »

Dolwphin wrote: October 15th, 2020, 10:44 pm Capitalism is the root of all evil, including the fact that Jonas Mekas is denied his righteous spot IMDb Top 250. People having other preferences is a result of capitalist hegemony, socialization and propaganda. People lacking the mental energy to process Film Art after a days hard work is a function of Capitalism. Mekas himself is a revolutionary anti-bourgeoisie amateur fighting against professional materialist Hollywood. :thumbsup:
Films without explosions, fist fights or hot babes don't deserve to be in the IMDb Top 250. I ain't gonna let some commie bastard try and convince me otherwise. :folded:
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#951

Post by Torgo »

Ebbywebby wrote: October 15th, 2020, 11:50 pm Herutâ sukerutâ 2012 — a.k.a. Helter Skelter
Poor Onderhond. Even his #4-vote couldn't save Herutâ in a year with so much new activity.
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#952

Post by outdoorcats »

OldAle1 wrote: October 15th, 2020, 8:58 pm
AdamH wrote: October 15th, 2020, 8:39 pm I'd be interested in hearing the story behind why people voted for their top films and if it was because of the forum.

My #1 film for this poll is Kradetzat na praskovi. I watched it in October 2012 because a Bulgarian girl at uni recommended it to me. It then first appeared in 500<400 in September 2013 but I'm not sure how it got popular on here. It's never been in the top 100 and has actually fallen recently.
My #1 is Take Care of My Cat and it has nothing to do with this forum - I saw it for the first time in 2006, it's been one of my favorite films ever since, it got me into Korean cinema and really helped to increase my interest in contemporary East Asian cinema generally (though I'm still an amateur compared to many here), and I've watched it around 7 times to date. It was #2 on my list behind Out 1 until this year when that film graduated out.

The only film in my top 50 that stands out as having anything to do with this forum is Reality's Invisible which I saw because PdA and others when crazy over it. Might be one or two others but doesn't look like it at first glance.
I'm pretty sure I watched Take Care of My Cat on your recommendation, and it's one of my favorites to this day, so :cheers:

As for my top picks, not influenced by this forum YET, but in past years I saw the list I never had time to watch stuff, and this year I do. I already have Shura (and possible future contender The Wolf House) lined up for the Horror Challenge.

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#953

Post by Dolwphin »

Lammetje wrote: October 16th, 2020, 12:02 am
Dolwphin wrote: October 15th, 2020, 10:44 pm Capitalism is the root of all evil, including the fact that Jonas Mekas is denied his righteous spot IMDb Top 250. People having other preferences is a result of capitalist hegemony, socialization and propaganda. People lacking the mental energy to process Film Art after a days hard work is a function of Capitalism. Mekas himself is a revolutionary anti-bourgeoisie amateur fighting against professional materialist Hollywood. :thumbsup:
Films without explosions, fist fights or hot babes don't deserve to be in the IMDb Top 250. I ain't gonna let some commie bastard try and convince me otherwise. :folded:
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Post by mightysparks »

How I discovered my top 10:

1 - was the first episode of MST3K I checked out and it was love at first sight
2 - a favourite short film of mine as a kid
3 - probably wanted to check out the treatment of the pedo stuff
4 - saw the trailer for FrightFest 2013 and thought it seemed amazing
5 - from a quick forum search it seems like it was because monty nominated it as best film of 1966 in an awards poll
6 - probably just seemed cool
7 - probably just seemed cool
8 - Mjf recommended it to me, pretty sure
9 - liked Tom Villard in another film so decided to check this one out
10 - think it was on TSPDT

So, two because of the forum, one because of an iCM list. The rest of my list probably has a similar ratio of reasons.
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#955

Post by Cippenham »

Rot from Dolwphin. I have seen Mekas work and enjoyed it despite working full time. You don’t have to watch it all at once as it is episodic.
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Post by prodigalgodson »

Thanks to PA for putting this together, and to everyone who contributed! What an invaluable resource. Sorry I didn't submit, I'll plan to make next year my first contribution (and sorry not to reply to you Adam haha).

Also, late to the game, but my thoughts on the Mekas controversy -- I haven’t seen anything from him aside from one short, but I’ve always thought of a filmmaker trying to truly capture their surroundings to be the height of cinematic humility, authenticity, and artistic virtue. :( If, as sparks says, it does come off as overly self-important, that’s another story, but he is undoubtedly on the Mt. Rushmore of American experimental film, so he's probably earned it to some degree.

“Mekas is an amateur so he doesn't know how to hold a shot.”

As albajos alluded to, given the title I’d have to think this is intentional, especially since in the film I’ve seen from him a quarter-century earlier he definitely knew how to hold a shot...for like hours, that were subsequently time-lapsed.
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#957

Post by Dolwphin »

Cippenham wrote: October 16th, 2020, 12:41 am Rot from Dolwphin. I have seen Mekas work and enjoyed it despite working full time. You don’t have to watch it all at once as it is episodic.
Also, it was never intended to necessarily be viewed in one viewing, it is rather designed to allow you to engage with it more freely. His work does have structure (e.g. the seasons) but are indeed episodic. I'm glad you appreciate Mekas, the more the merrier! :thumbsup:
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Post by Dolwphin »

Mekas valued authenticity and realism. There was also an appreciation of amateur technologies in his circles. He could have filmed more conventionally, instead of deploying a single-frame shooting style, if he had wished to do so. So making (accurate) descriptive statements about his "amateurish" style is missing the point. It reminds me of people complaining about robotic mannerisms and blank expressions in Bresson's works. Mekas aestheticism, with its kinetic energy and poetry created through motion (labeled "Emersonian Aesthetics" by Sitney in his excellent book Eyes Upside Down) does have artistic value beyond a typical "home video".

Anyhow, I'm glad to see Mekas getting all this praise. Cheers! :cheers:
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Post by weirdboy »

Regarding Brief Glimpses, the thing that really irritates me about that movie is his crappy accordion playing and singing as an accompaniment to the home videos.
It is like someone thought of the worst possible holiday family gathering torture and put it on video for everyone to see.


As to the list, I believe I am at 426/500 with this update.

So, I have some work to do.
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Post by prodigalgodson »

OldAle1 wrote: October 15th, 2020, 8:55 pm
Fergenaprido wrote: October 15th, 2020, 8:30 pm
OldAle1 wrote: October 15th, 2020, 1:54 pm Narcissistic yes - elitist and snobbish, I'm not so sure. He came from humble beginnings and I don't think he ever lost sight of that, and his life was more the bohemian Brooklyn type than the Woody Allen upper-East-side variety; there's a big difference between those who hang around and promote other artists - real artists who are not in it mostly for the money - and the poseurs and comfortable, wealthy middlebrow folks who want to be accepted by "the Academy", whatever that may be. I don't think Mekas ever pretended to be anything he wasn't. I DO think he made the same mistake (in interviews and perhaps in his writings, very little of which I've read) of assuming that a larger number of people might follow what he and Kenneth Anger and Brakhage and others were doing; Rosenbaum does this over and over as well, assuming that large masses of people actually would like difficult/avant garde/abstract/foreign art if only they got the proper exposure and if only the media gave it equal time, and capitalism didn't destroy everything. I just don't see that; virtually 100% of all living people have grown up believing that film=narrative or, very occasionally, straightforward documentation, and getting people from Star Wars to Mekas - my own journey and that of plenty of people on this forum - is very difficult and very, very, very few people want to tread that path. Not because it's hard or weird but because they just don't care, they're satisfied with what they already watch/hear/read/etc. Why try the gourmet burger, or the veggie burger, if I like McDonalds? So that's where these guys are being elitist - not so much in damning the Michael Bays of this world or their fans, but in believing that art is important enough to a large enough number of people that it could and should matter more than it does. Maybe someday, in a more enlightened society, but we're sure nowhere near that in America.
I never got the sense of elitism or snobbishness or even narcissism from the Mekas films I've seen, but maybe those are the more accessible ones. This write-up, however, reeks of all three and I'm not clear if this is your opinion or if you're paraphrasing the opinions of others. It's very condescending to posit that difficult/avant garde/abstract/foreign art is inherently better than narrative or other film genres/movements and assuming that those who do not like/get/enjoy those films are unenlightened. The idea that certain types of art/film are inherently better than others infuriates me, and I reject it as categorically false. Different folks appreciate different types of art/film, and I don't understand why people feel the need to constantly disparage those whose taste is different from one's own.
I thought I was pretty clear but I guess not
I think your post was very clear, empathetic, and on point Ale, I don't understand Ferg's outrage. It's not like you're saying people shouldn't enjoy McDonalds or calling it inherently inferior. Then again if there were equally affordable gourmet burgers and people actually knew about them I don't think it's unreasonable to assume more people would be loving those than are now.
I'm sure many of us have "elite" film tastes but watch dumb TV or read Harry Potter (me!) or eat fast food or have Old Navy clothing tastes. So being uber-snobbish about everything is really just telling everybody that you've decided to limit yourself and stay in an ivory tower all the time. And I think most people that do that are probably internet nerds living in basements, not successful filmmakers or critics or painters or writers.
Also never fails to amuse me how often a guy whose idea of a perfect evening is a cold beer and a Buffy marathon has been accused of snobbery over the years. As for keeping it thorough, me I'll take my home-cooked mie goreng and go read my George Eliot in peace through the Prada shades I bought busting my ass as a server somewhere far from the haters (unless I'm in the mood for Fatburger and King of the Hill) :p
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