8 September 2011

Retro Lists! Best Films of the Year: 1999

A year or two back I retrospectively began to post up my best of the year film lists on Dark Eye Socket; they are currently complete from 2000 to 2010. (Scroll down the right-hand side of the blog page and click on 'top tens' under 'labels'.) In the run up to the 2011 film lists in Dec/Jan I'll be sporadically posting up my film picks from 1999 all the way back to 1990. (1989 and earlier may have to just remain a mystery... for now, anyway.)

As with the earlier posts it's purely to maintain a record of them online, for personal posterity, and for the general perusal of anyone so inclined to scroll through them. As ever, the films are dictated by UK release date (all were, by-and-large, released here between Jan. 1st and Dec. 31st 1999). The conspicuous absence of certain significant or key titles may mean that either, a) I saw the film in question and didn't rate it highly enough, or b) I didn't see it and still have it to look forward to. Hurrah for cinematic longevity. But, of course, as is always the case in these matters, the list could all change in a week, a month, a year as, when and if I see more films from 1999 in future.

But, for now and for fun curiosity, here are My ten selections for Best of 1999:

01. Belfast, Maine (Frederick Wiseman)

02. eXistenZ (David Cronenberg)

03. The Iron Giant (Brad Bird)

04. Gods and Monsters (Bill Condon)

05. All About My Mother (Pedro Almodóvar)

06. High Art (Lisa Cholodenko)
07. Central Station (Walter Salles)
08. Last Night (Don McKellar)
09. The Straight Story (David Lynch)
10. A Simple Plan (Sam Raimi)

Five more, in no order:

Festen (Thomas Vinterberg)
The Apple/Sib (Samira Makhmalbaf)
Felicia's Journey (Atom Egoyan)
Ravenous (Antonia Bird)
Following (Christopher Nolan)

Male & Female Acting of the Year - five each, no order:

* Ian McKellen Gods and Monsters
Richard Farnsworth The Straight Story
Bill Murray Rushmore
James Caviezel The Thin Red Line
Guy Pierce Ravenous

* Fernanda Montenegro Central station
Bodil Jørgensen The Idiots
Ally Sheedy High Art
Sissy Spacek The Straight Story
Nicole Kidman Eyes Wide Shut


  1. First off, you throw me for a loop because you say 1999 and I'm thinking in terms of American Beauty, Talented Mr. Ripley. Movig on.

    Love, this, I too had done this but stopped at 1999 because I really hadn't seen as many 90s films as 00s one. I'm tempted to begin again, but I'm so lazy. What I love about these lists is seeing choices that I'd never think to have on list. It's really all about Shakespeare in Love for me this year.

  2. Yes, it's the release date differentiation thing. US & UK dates often don't match; one film can be released at the end of the year in the US and early the next in the UK. Talented Mr. Ripley etc would be 2000 films, as I go by date of release in most cases. But, as with many things like this, it's relative and open to change.

    I'd done 2000-2010 (and will go onward with it this year), but I'd left 1999 and earlier, though I wanted to do these quick posts for posterity/to log them somewhere. I'm already seeing that the amount of films from certain years may be less than others, as some years I saw less or the films weren't always that great. You should restart your lists, I'd be interested to read them.