The Playlist

My Favorite Films Of 2011 - Rodrigo Perez

  • By Rodrigo Perez
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  • January 14, 2012 10:35 AM
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  • 15 Comments
Topping my list of 2011’s #1stworldproblems was making a top 10 list. Such is the difficult life of having to see movies for free and then attempt to express something insightful about them. I have the same issue every year: feeling zero motivation to write a top 10 list and then of course, almost writing about 20 films this year. #contradictoryfail. However, I can’t promise there will be any insights here. Perhaps the problem was that Gabe, Chris, Drew, Kevin and Oli all made eloquent lists that said all that really needed to be said about 2011’s film, but regardless, here I am with my belated round-up.

Drew Taylor's Favorite Films Of 2011

  • By Drew Taylor
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  • December 24, 2011 9:25 AM
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  • 21 Comments
2011 was undoubtedly the year of Terrence Malick's "Tree of Life." It just wasn't for me. After winning the Palme d'Or on the same day that I saw the movie, I was left feeling baffled. Like I had missed something.

Hope You Like Synths: The Best Scores & Soundtracks Of 2011

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • December 14, 2011 2:29 PM
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  • 30 Comments
Way back in the day, The Playlist started as a site focused principally on the places where movies and music met, and in particular, on scores and soundtracks. We've widened our net in the intervening years simply because that sole focus felt too small and we're movie lovers just as much as music lovers, but that interest has never gone away. And how could it? In many ways, we've reached the most interesting time in film scoring in years, with 2011 in particular seeing a number of electronic artists bringing the synth back into fashion in a big way. Between these and last year's Daft Punk-abled "Tron: Legacy" score, has there ever been a time when movie music has been so, well, danceable?

From Bloody Murders To Bridesmaid Speeches: The 25 Best Movie Moments Of 2011

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • December 13, 2011 1:59 PM
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  • 49 Comments
The great Howard Hawks once famously said that what makes a good film is "three great scenes, and no bad ones." While we'd argue that that's not an absolute hard-and-fast rule, he wasn't far off. With 2011 providing a number of above-average films, there've been plenty of memorable moments to go around, even if we couldn't attest to them all following Hawks Law.

Box Office: Slow Weekend As '80s Remakes 'Footloose' & 'The Thing' Open Soft; 'Real Steel' Stays #1

  • By Gabe Toro
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  • October 16, 2011 3:40 AM
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  • 7 Comments
You put out one remake of an '80s movie during a slow weekend, and it’s not a big deal. You put out remakes of two niche early '80s hits on the same weekend, and audiences get the message. This weekend was the clearest example yet of studios offering reheated product, one of which was remains in public memory as a punch line, the other as a cult classic that was ignored by critics and audiences upon its initial release. At least they weren’t expensive.

In Theaters: '80s Night At The Multiplex With 'Footloose' & 'The Thing'

  • By Katie Walsh
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  • October 14, 2011 7:34 AM
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  • 1 Comment
Kick off your Sunday shoes, dear readers, this weekend it's time to cut loose with "Footloose." And what's that? It's a remake-tastic weekend with "The Thing" also in theaters, if you enjoy your '80s nostalgia with body inhabiting aliens instead of nubile dancing teens. Also, Señor Almodóvar's latest, "The Skin I Live In," and the funnymen trio of Martin, Wilson and Black in "The Big Year."

The Films Of Pedro Almodóvar: A Retrospective

  • By Oliver Lyttelton
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  • October 14, 2011 5:50 AM
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  • 7 Comments
Pedro Almodovar, I'm So Excited
Pedro Almodóvar is one of the most respected filmmakers in the world, an Oscar winner whose films have become Cannes mainstays, and who's capable of attracting almost any talent that he'd like, despite having never made a film in the English language (although he says that one is on the one way soon). But his global reputation is all the more remarkable considering just how challenging his fare can be. His violent, sexual taboo-pushing early work is the most obvious example, but throughout his career his interest in gay issues, Sirk-ian melodrama, explicit sex and obsessive behavior has hardly been the kind of thing that usually makes the chattering classes line up around the block.

NYFF '11: Pedro Almodóvar Talks The Identity And Gender Themes Of ‘The Skin I Live In’

  • By Mark Zhuravsky
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  • October 13, 2011 5:16 AM
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  • 0 Comments
Director Discusses Finding Humor In Tragedy, Differences Between Men And Women, And MoreWhen we first laid our eyes upon Pedro Almodóvar's "The Skin I Live In" at Cannes, we called it a film that "snaps between bright glittering glamour and dark, doomed horror," and emerges largely triumphant, "uniquely beautiful and distinctively imperfect." The reception for Almodóvar's latest in the Big Apple has been similarly apprehensive and appreciative; the audience's reaction at last Tuesday's press screening was a testament to the polarizing nature of the film. Almodóvar and stars Antonio Banderas and Elena Anaya were present with a translator in tow, and the conversation was by turns amusing and laid-back, touching on themes and concepts native to the story. While our own Jen Vineyard turned in an excellent piece digging deep into the specifics of the production, this time most of the questions were addressed to Almodóvar, who fielded them with ease, occasionally utilizing the translator for particularly verbose answers.

Review: Byzantine, Bloody Almodóvar Takes A New Direction With 'The Skin I Live In'

  • By James Rocchi
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  • October 13, 2011 2:57 AM
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  • 0 Comments
The following is a reprint of our review from Cannes.

NYFF: Pedro Almodóvar Told Antonio Banderas To Watch Cary Grant Movies To Prep For 'Skin I Live In'

  • By Jen Vineyard
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  • October 12, 2011 3:26 AM
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  • 1 Comment
The Director Reveals He's Not Doing A Biopic On Mina; Tension, Twists & More From The Team Behind The FilmPedro Almodóvar crafts a creepy Frankenstein-esque tale of rape, revenge, and survival in "The Skin I Live In" – a polarizing film which is one of his most ambitious yet. Because the movie features an unexpected twist halfway through the film, discussing it becomes difficult – how do you debate the themes, the issues and the meaning without giving it all away? We leave that task to the esteemed director and his cast that includes Antonio Banderas and Elena Anaya, who hit NYFF this week to present this latest concoction, a tale unlike anything Almodóvar has put on the big screen before. Covering everything from the twist in the movie (don't worry, we won't reveal it here), the reason why Antonio Banderas had to watch Cary Grant movies to prepare for the film, and the themes of identity that run through the story, the trio were happy to discuss in detail the quirky, provocative and unforgettable film.

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