Otherwise titled, Tristan's 2010 Films Awards, Part 3.
I'm going to run some commentary as I go along so I'll keep the upfront talk to a minimum, but just to reiterate, 2010 was a pretty darn good year. Hell, I could probably have stretched it to 40 with the likes of Please Give, Inception, True Grit, Easy A, Restrepo, How To Train Your Dragon, and even the totally bizarre Wild Grass. But instead you get 30, which is a totally arbitrary number, though it does allow me to give shout outs to a few other films that I couldn't fit into the rest of the nominations, but are still worth a look. But since this is has accidentally turned into the Old Country Buffet of awards lists, I'm going to be forced to make my cinematic ruminations similarly indigestible. So be warned, little actual insight ahead.
Shall we proceed?
30. Map of the Sounds of Tokyo (Isabel Coixet)
29. Alamar (Pedro Gonzalez-Rubio)
28. Let Me In (Matt Reeves)
27. Secret Sunshine (Lee Chang-dong)
26. Night Catches Us (Tanya Hamilton)
25. Micmacs (Jean-Pierre Jeunet)
24. 127 Hours (Danny Boyle)
23. Fish Tank (Andrea Arnold)
22. Around a Small Mountain (Jacques Rivette)
21. Blue Valentine (Derek Cianfrance)
20. Red Riding: 1974 (Julian Jarrod)
19. A Prophet (Jacques Audiard)
18. Animal Kingdom (David Michod)
17. The Social Network (David Fincher)
16. White Material (Claire Denis)
15. Terribly Happy (Henrik Ruben Genz)
14. Winter's Bone (Debra Granik)
13. Vincere (Marco Bellocchio)
12. The American (Anton Corbijn)
11. Tangled (Nathan Greno and Byron Howard)
Which leaves us right on the doorstep of the top 10. Drumroll, please.
10. The Ghost Writer (Roman Polanski)
9. Carlos (Olivier Assayas)
8. Never Let Me Go (Mark Romanek)
7. Ondine (Neil Jordan)
6. Mother (Boon Jong-ho)
5. Another Year (Mike Leigh)
4. Bluebeard (Catherine Breillat)
3. Enter The Void (Gaspar Noe)
2. The Illusionist (Sylvain Chomet)
1. Black Swan (Darren Aronofsky)
Much like Inglourious Basterds last year, Black Swan attempts off the bold feat of ending the film on a singular line that doubles as a self-appraisal. And like Inglourious Basterds, against all odds, this somehow works. No, the film isn't perfect, or not in the seamless sense that most will take it. There are rough edges, a few inconsistencies, and a few lines of dialogue that just don't ring true, but whatever, perfection in that sense can often translate to boring, and I like my films a little rough around the edges.
I also like them, from time to time, to be batshit insane and not give a tinker's damn about the overrated concept of subtlety. Black Swan is so committed to its indulgences that I can't help but stand in awe of Darren Aronofsky for pulling it all off, and that goes especially for the spectacular climax, the year's most superbly orchestrated scene by miles and miles. Throw in a career defining performance by Natalie Portman and you've got what's sure to be one of my favorite pictures of the decade, let alone year.
Thanks for dropping by everyone! Looking forward to the year ahead, with a few great films already under my belt and some promising ones on the nearby horizon in Tree of Life and Melancholia.
And I don't know exactly how soon this is happening, but I have an exciting side-project along with a cinematic wiz-kid friend of mine that I can't wait to unleash on you all. In due time though.