There Will Be Film

<i>Eastern Promises</i>
Eastern Promises

1) The Lives of Others Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck's tale of repression and redemption in communist East Germany is as brilliant a directorial debut as anyone not named Orson Welles could hope for.

2) The Bourne Ultimatum Director Paul Greengrass spins adrenaline into art and comes up with the best action movie since Raiders of the Lost Ark.

3) Eastern Promises This unflinching look inside the Russian mafia is one of the oddest, most energizing films I've seen in years.

4) No Country for Old Men The Coen brothers return to form with this elliptical, agnostic trip into America's violent heart.

5) The Diving Bell and the Butterfly Can there be anything more inspiring than a movie about a stroke victim who creates an entire world inside his head? Or more humbling?

6) The Wind That Shakes the Barley Populist agit-prop at its finest, shot with a sense of ethical urgency by cinema's great humanist, Ken Loach.

7) Juno This film's unbearably clever first 30 minutes had me looking for a rafter to hang myself from. The next hour had me believing in something.

8) Things We Lost in the Fire As a junkie coming to the aid of his dead friend's family, Benicio del Toro carves his face onto the Mount Rushmore of great film actors.

<i>Away From Her</i>
Away From Her

9) Michael Clayton Paranoia filmmaking the way it should be done. A throwback to the glory days of All the President's Men and The Parallax View.

10) Control It's no 24 Hour Party People, but Anton Corbijn's dour tribute to Joy Division lead singer Ian Curtis is still a masterpiece.

NEAR MISSES: The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford; The Hoax; Sicko; Lust, Caution

MOST OVERRATED: Knocked Up, Gone Baby Gone, This Is England

MOST UNDERRATED: The Hoax, Things We Lost in the Fire, After the Wedding

ACTING KUDOS (MALE): Benicio del Toro (Things We Lost in the Fire), Ulrich Mühe (The Lives of Others), Tommy Lee Jones (No Country for Old Men)

ACTING KUDOS (FEMALE): Ellen Page (Juno), Halle Berry (Things We Lost in the Fire), Martina Gedeck (The Lives of Others)

BEST DIRECTOR: Ethan and Joel Coen (No Country for Old Men), Paul Greengrass (The Bourne Ultimatum), Julian Schnabel (The Diving Bell and the Butterfly)

BEST SCREENPLAY (ORIGINAL): The Wind That Shakes the Barley (Paul Laverty), Eastern Promises (Steven Knight), Michael Clayton (Tony Gilroy)

BEST SCREENPLAY (ADAPTED): No Country for Old Men (Ethan and Joel Coen), Away From Her (Sarah Polley), The Hoax (William Wheeler)

BEST REVIVAL: Army of Shadows: 30 years after its original release, Melville's semiautobiographical classic about the French Resistance gets the Criterion treatment it deserves.

WILD CARD: The Strongest-Argument-for-a-Best-Cameo-Academy-Award Award: In I Am Legend, Emma Thompson creates more magic in two minutes of screen time than most actors manage in two hours.

A note to readers: Bold and uncensored, The Austin Chronicle has been Austin’s independent news source for almost 40 years, expressing the community’s political and environmental concerns and supporting its active cultural scene. Now more than ever, we need your support to continue supplying Austin with independent, free press. If real news is important to you, please consider making a donation of $5, $10 or whatever you can afford, to help keep our journalism on stands.

Support the Chronicle  

READ MORE
More by Josh Rosenblatt
SXSW Film Review: <i>Bikes vs. Cars</i>
SXSW: Bikes vs. Cars
Swedish doc looks into the war between wheels

March 16, 2015

SXSW Film Review: <i>Sweaty Betty</i>
SXSW: Sweaty Betty
A dog, two single dads, and a 1,000-pound pig

March 15, 2015

MORE IN THE ARCHIVES
NEWSLETTERS
One click gets you all the newsletters listed below

Breaking news, arts coverage, and daily events

Can't keep up with happenings around town? We can help.

Austin's queerest news and events

Updates for SXSW 2019

All questions answered (satisfaction not guaranteed)

Information is power. Support the free press, so we can support Austin.   Support the Chronicle