film programmer and historian

Machines (Rahul Jain, 2016). Documentary. Shot in India, the reality of labour and exploitation in global economy.
Nokia Mobile (Arto Koskinen, 2017). Documentary. The inside story of the rise and fall of the Nokia community. Phenomenal call options for a tiny elite destroyed the common spirit.
G. J. Ramstedtin maailma (Eastern Memories, Niklas Kullström, Martti Kaartinen, 2017). Documentary. The story of an explorer, linguist and diplomat in Mongolia, Japan, and Korea a hundred years ago. The way to the discovery of a foreign language through its spiritual essence.
Polte (Flame, Sami van Ingen, 2018). An experimental short. In the decayed footage of Teuvo Tulio’s Nuorena nukkunut / Silja (1937) the fire is still burning.
The Post (Steven Spielberg, 2017). Steven Spielberg in his best form in a taut historical drama about the freedom of the press and being the sole woman in an all male panel.
Une saison en France (A Season in France, Mahamat-Saleh Haroun, 2017). Mahamat-Saleh Haroun is one of the greatest masters of contemporary cinema. A work of rare dignity and humanity about an asylum-seeker’s agony.
Le vénérable W. (The Venerable W., Barbet Schroeder, 2017). Documentary. An exceptional and terrifying movie, an inside story about the persecution of the Rohingya in Myanmar.
M – a Film by Anna Eriksson (Anna Eriksson, 2018). An artist’s film, a debut film, an independent film by a popular singer. A passion play, a work of body art, about the suffering of the flesh and the illusoriness of the image.
Ilosia aikoja, mielensäpahoittaja (Happier Times, Grump, Tiina Lymi, 2018). A new entry in the saga of the Grump, the one for whom everything was better in the past. A comedy with gravity. A funeral leads to a scene which destroys any remaining family spirit. The Grump starts crafting a coffin for himself. In the finale he crafts a cradle for his great-grandchild.
Vieras  (Strange, Mox Mäkelä, 2018). A feature length artist’s film by a pioneering conceptual artist. A sound play movie, abundant, generous, literate, hand-crafted, full of associations. A paean to life, not only human, but to all living things. Unwieldy and unforgettable.
BlacKkKlansman (Spike Lee, 2018). Spike Lee at his best. The approach can be compared with Ernst Lubitsch in To Be Or Not To Be. Well cast. Laura Harrier is one to watch.
Le Livre d’image (The Image Book, Jean-Luc Godard, 2018). The poet’s view gets darker. This cosmic poem of associations focuses on the maelstrom of violence and terrorism of our times.
Leave No Trace (Debra Granik, 2018). Granik’s first fiction feature after Winter’s Bone. The forest sense strikes a chord familiar to a Finn. The forest is the last refuge for the PTSD father whose daughter needs to break free from his nomad life.
K.S.E. Komsomol – Shef elektrifikatsii (K.S.E. Komsomol – Leader of Electrification, Esfir Shub, 1932). Non-fiction, no compilation. An industrial montage film with an avantgardistic approach in sound, including the theremin.
Scener ur ett äktenskap 1–6  (Scenes from a Marriage 1–6, Ingmar Bergman, 1973). The 2002 restoration, part of the Bergman 100 touring show. Bergman at his most reduced and at his most emotionally powerful.
Slnko v sieti (The Sun in the Net, Štefan Uher, 1962). A Slovakian New Wave film set in Bratislava. Could be a double bill with Antonioni’s L’eclisse.
Prästen i Uddarbo (The Minister of Uddarbo, Kenne Fant, 1957). A mix of Don Camillo and Bresson’s The Diary of a Country Priest, a unique saga of Swedish Protestantism, starring Max von Sydow and with Ingmar Bergman as advisor in their annus mirabilis.
The Patsy (Jerry Lewis, 1964). Jerry Lewis’s last Paramount film, a nightmare comedy about the loss of identity, with Jill St. John as a center of sanity. The cosmic solitude. The Pygmalion narrative taken to metaphysical dimensions.
La donna scimmia (The Ape Woman, Marco Ferreri, 1964). From Ferreri’s greatest period, a constantly surprising saga of itinerant performers: a ruthless showman (Ugo Tognazzi) and his hairy woman (Annie Girardot).
The Red Shoes (Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger, 1948). The Nitrate Picture Show. “About art worth dying for”. Striking in the vintage print is the softness of the image and the subdued quality of the colour dreamspace.
Vechir na Ivana Kupala (The Eve of Ivan Kupalo, Yuri Ilyenko, 1968). 70 mm. Stunning Ukrainian psychedelia based on Nikolai Gogol’s Dikanka stories, from the “Crazy Year 1968”.
Yellow Submarine (George Dunning, 1968). A beautiful 50th anniversary restoration, a sing-along performance at the Big Top in Midnight Sun Film Festival. I saw this during the first run but now the surreal animation stands out more clearly.
Seed (John M. Stahl, 1931). John M. Stahl was the discovery of this year. Melodrama taken seriously, interpreted with tact and restraint. The mystery of the wooden male protagonists in Stahl’s 1930s films was illuminated by Imogen Sara Smith.
Goya: La festa di Sant’Isidoro (Goya: the party of Sant’Isidoro, 1950), Picasso (1954) and Leonardo da Vinci (1952). As recognized by André Bazin, Luciano Emmer were the first to truly understand the unique contribution of the cinema to art biography via a montage of the artworks themselves. Though the prints are woeful the Emmer inspiration remains exemplary.
Monterey Pop (D. A. Pennebaker, 1968). 50th Anniversary Restoration. The manifesto of counterculture looks and sounds better than ever. Electrifying, mesmerizing, inspiring.
Sorcerer (William Friedkin, 1977). The 2013 restoration of the Director’s Cut. The burning oilfields, the Paris Stock Exchange, the Damascus Gate, and the perilous journey are even more potent images today than at the time of the first run.
The Lincoln Cycle (John M. Stahl, 1917). This Benjamin Chapin vehicle grows into a marvellous parallel saga about the Lincoln family and the U.S. Civil War. Of equal grandeur as John Ford’s Young Mr. Lincoln.
Das alte Gesetz (The Ancient Law, E. A. Dupont, 1923). The 1984 restoration was distinguished but this 2018 restoration is a revelation. A masterpiece emerges. The story is the same as in The Jazz Singer, but this film is more rich and profound.
The Old Dark House (James Whale, 1932). The 2017 Cohen Collection restoration. James Whale’s greatest horror film and the greatest haunted house film deserves this subtle restoration that does justice to the cinematography of Arthur Edeson and the incredible cast.
Godovshchina revoliutsii (Anniversary of the Revolution, Dziga Vertov, 1918). Nikolai Izvolov surprises the world with the reconstruction of Vertov’s first feature believed lost for almost a hundred years. It is a linear and and traditional compilation but the footage is stunning and mostly unseen.

Le Livre d’image (The Image Book, Jean-Luc Godard, 2018)

Francisco Algarín Navarro 

Editor at lumiére magazine, programmer at xcéntric

Not differentiating between films seen for the first or several times:
One Second in Montreal (Michael Snow, 1969)
‘Rameau’s Nephew’ by Diderot (Michael Snow, 1974)
To Lavoisier, Who Died in the Reign of Terror (Michael Snow, 1991)
3-Minute Hells (Amy Halpern, 2012)
30 Sound Situations (Ryszard Wasko, 1975)
37/78 Tree Again (Kurt Kren, 1978)
Axiomatic Granularity (Paul Sharits, 1973)
A Depression in the Bay of Bengal (Mark LaPore, 1996)
A Ilha de Moraes (The Island of Moraes, Paulo Rocha, 1984)
A Pousada das Chagas (Paulo Rocha, 1972)
Sever do Vouga (Paulo Rocha, 1971)
A Leaf Is The Sea Is A Theatre (Jonathan Schwartz, 2018)
A Return (James Edmonds, 2018)
Abbandono (Abandonment, Werner Nekes , 1970)
Gurtrug nr.1 (Werner Nekes, 1967)
Afternoon (Andy Warhol, 1965)
Horse (Andy Warhol, 1965)
Kitchen (Andy Warhol, 1965)
Lupe (Andy Warhol, 1965)
Poor Little Rich Girl (Andy Warhol, 1965)
Restaurant (Andy Warhol, 1965)
Space (Andy Warhol, 1965)
Vinyl (Andy Warhol, 1965)
All I Desire (Douglas Sirk, 1953)
Altiplano (Malena Szlam, 2018)
First Weeks (Robert Beavers, 2014)
Angle (Michel Nedjar, 1978)
Le Gant de l’autre (Michel Nedjar, 1977)
Teo (Michel Nedjar, 1978)
Angst vor der Angst (Fear of Fear, R. W. Fassbinder, 1975)
Die dritte Generation (The Third Generation, R. W. Fassbinder, 1979)
Ich will doch nur, daß ihr mich liebt (I Only Want You to Love Me, R. W. Fassbinder, 1976)
Martha (R. W. Fassbinder, 1974)
Another Movie (Morgan Fisher, 2018)
Arboretum Cycle (Nathaniel Dorsky, 2018)
Hours for Jerome (Nathaniel Dorsky, 1982)
Arrival (Mani Kaul, 1980)
Dhrupad (Mani Kaul, 1983)
Forms and Design (Mani Kaul, 1968)
Mati Manas (Mani Kaul, 1985)
As Much Time as Space (Katja Mater, 2018)
Between Relating and Use (Nazli Dinçel, 2018)
Beyond a Reasonable Doubt (Fritz Lang, 1956)
Billabong (Will Hindle, 1969)
Chinese Firedrill (Will Hindle, 1968)
FFFTCM (Will Hindle, 1967)
Black on White Tape (David Haxton, 1974)
Cubes (David Haxton, 1976)
Drawing Houses (David Haxton, 1982)
Painting Lights ( David Haxton, 1976)
Pyramid Drawings ( David Haxton, 1976)
Bouquets 11-20 (Rose Lowder, 2011)
Couleurs mécaniques (Rose Lowder, 1979)
Brecht die Macht der Manipulateure! (Helke Sander, 1968)
Brighton Belle (Jacques Monory, 1974)
Ex (Jacques Monory, 1968)
Broken Blossoms (Miles McKane, 1992)
Garden For... (Miles McKane, 2003-2006)
Paysage natal (Miles McKane, 1983)
Candle (Neil Henderson, 2018)
Ceniza verde (Green Ash, Pablo Mazzolo, 2018)
Colour Work (Michael Mazière, 1981)
Silent Film (Michael Mazière, 1982)
Swimmer (Michael Mazière, 1987)
Commingled Containers (Stan Brakhage, 1997)
Egyptian Series (Stan Brakhage, 1983)
Jane (Stan Brakhage, 1985)
Roman Numeral Series I-IX (Stan Brakhage, 1981)
The Wold-Shadow (Stan Brakhage, 1972)
Corporeal (Arthur&Corinne Cantrill, 1983)
Heat Shimmer (Arthur&Corinne Cantrill, 1978)
Home Movie–A Day in the Bush (Arthur&Corinne Cantrill, 1969)
Island Fuse (Arthur&Corinne Cantrill, 1971)
Delphine de Oliveira (Friedl vom Gröller, 2009)
Erwin, Toni, Ilse (Friedl vom Gröller, 1968)
Psychoanalyses without Ethics (Friedl vom Gröller, 2005)
Winter in Paris (Friedl vom Gröller, 2018)
Devotio Moderna (Michele Fleming, 1993)
Left Handed Memories (Michele Fleming, 1989)
Life/Expectancy (Michele Fleming, 1999)
Private Property (Public Domain) (Michele Fleming, 1991)
Discoveries on the Forest Floor 1-3 (Charlotte Pryce, 2007)
El grito (The Scream, Leobardo López Arretche, 1968)
Entre ciel et terre (Between Heaven and Earth, Pascal Auger, 1989)
Eros, O Basileus (Gregory J. Markopoulos, 1967)
Galaxie (Galaxy, Gregory J. Markopoulos, 1966)
Face Value ( Johan van der Keuken, 1991)
Field Studies (Scott Hammen, 1996)
Seven Landscapes (Scott Hammen, 1995)
Film sans caméra STST (Films without STST camera, Giovanni Martedi, 1975)
Flash Back (S.N.S. Sastry, 1974)
Forsest of Bliss (Robert Gardner, 1986)
Forest of Oppression (Shinsuke Ogawa, 1967)
The Magino Village Story–Raising Silkworms (Shinsuke Ogawa, 1977)
Winter in Sanrizuka (Shinsuke Ogawa, 1970)
Summer in Sanrizuka (Shinsuke Ogawa , 1968)
The Building of the Iwayama Tower (Shinsuke Ogawa, 1971)
Sea of Youth (Shinsuke Ogawa, 1966)
The Magino Village Story (Shinsuke Ogawa, 1986)
Fragmentos amorosos (Love Fragments, Jeannette Muñoz, 2018)
Frames (Annabel Nicolson, 1973)
Friendly Witness (Warren Sonbert, 1989)
Frozen Flashes (Dore O, 1976)
Kaskara (Dore O, 1974)
Gens du lac (People by the Lake, Jean-Marie Straub, 2018)
Geu-hu (The Day After, Hong Sangsoo, 2017)
Grass (Hong Sangsoo, 2018)
Golden Seeta (Govindan Aravindan, 1977)
Good Sam ( Leo McCarey, 1948)
My Son John (Leo McCarey, 1952)
Hard Core (Walter De Maria, 1969)
Hoarders Without Borders (Jodie Mack, 2018)
The Grand Bizarre (Jodie Mack, 2018)
I diari di Angela-Noi due cineasti (Angela’s diaries- Two filmmakers, Yervant Gianikian & Angela Ricci Lucchi, 2018)
I Was a Male War Bride (Howard Hawks, 1949)
Ice (Robert Kramer, 1970)
Ice ( J. J. Murphy, 1972)
In Progress ( J. J. Murphy, 1972)
Sky Blue Water Light Sign ( J. J. Murphy, 1979)
Impressions en haute atmosphere (José Antonio Sistiaga, 1989)
Paisaje inquietante-Nocturno (José Antonio Sistiaga, 1991)
In der Dämmerstunde Berlin de l’aube à la nuit (Annik Leroy, 1980)
Inca Light (Robert Fulton, 1972)
Reality’s Invisible (Robert Fulton, 1971)
Iris (Pierre Rovere, 1976)
Zèbres (Zebras, Pierre Rovere, 1978)
Jabbok (Tom Chomont, 1967)
Oblivon (Tom Chomont, 1969)
Jean-Luc Nancy (Antoinette Zwirchmayr, 2018)
Kyldex 1 Projections (Nicolas Schöffer, 1973)
L’Amour d’une femme (The love of a Woman, Jean Grémillon, 1953)
L’Été (Marcel Hanoun, 1968)
L’Hiver (Marcel Hanoun, 1969)
Un film (autoportrait) (A Film, Marcel Hanoun, 1983)
La Fièvre monte à El Pao (Fever Mounts at El Pao, Luis Buñuel, 1959)
La Maison des bois (The House of The Woods, Maurice Pialat, 1971)
LaTêtée (Teo Hernández, 1992)
Souvenirs/Barcelone (Teo Hernández, 1981)
Souvenirs/Florence (Teo Hernández, 1981)
Souvenirs/Marseille (Teo Hernández, 1980)
Le 15/8 (The 15/8, Chantal Akerman, 1975)
Le Cinématographe (The Cinematograph, Michel Baulez, 1969)
Le Jour des rois (Epiphany Sunday, Marie-Claude Treilhou, 1990)
Simone Barbès ou la vertu (Simone Barbes or Virtue, Marie-Claude Treilhou, 1980)
Le Livre d’image (The Image Book, Jean-Luc Godard, 2018)
Les Flocons d’or (Goldflocken, Werner Schroeter, 1976)
Le Rêve du papillon (The Dream of A Butterfly, Alain Mazars, 1982)
Letter to D.H. in Paris (David Brooks, 1967)
The Wind is Driving Him Toward the Open Sea (David Brooks, 1968)
Winter (David Brooks, 1966)
Letters (Dorothy Wiley, 1972)
Lisa (Ute Aurand, 2018)
Match Girl (Andrew Meyer, 1966)
Méditerranée (Jean-Daniel Pollet, 1963)
Mi aporte (My contribution, Sara Gómez, 1969)
Mirror (Robert Morris, 1971)
Slow Motion (Robert Morris, 1969)
Monangambee (Sarah Maldoror, 1969)
Mum’s Cards (Luke Fowler, 2018)
Near Loutra Iraias ( Nick Collins, 2017)
Wittnerchrome Notes#2 ( Nick Collins, 2018)
Niagara (Henry Hathaway, 1953)
Night Nurse (William A. Wellman, 1931)
Other Men’s Women (William A. Wellman, 1931)
Non credo piu all’amore (Fear, Roberto Rossellini, 1954)
Opera Mundi (Nicolas Rey, 1999)
Petit à petit (Little by Little, Jean Rouch, 1970)
Phantom Thread (Paul Thomas Anderson, 2017)
Pitchfork and the Devil (Mike Henderson, 1979)
The Shape of Things (Mike Henderson, 1981)
Platz da, Halt (There’s room, stop, Thomas Korschil, 1993)
Qui trop embrasse (Who kisses too much, Jacques Davila, 1986)
Rhythms of the Heart (Steve Sanguedolce, 1990)
Rounds (Jenny Okun, 1978)
Schatten der Engel (Shadow of Angels, Daniel Schmid, 1976)
Side/Walk/Shuttle (Ernie Gehr, 1992)
Signal-Germany on the Air (Ernie Gehr, 1985)
Table (Ernie Gehr, 1976)
Sightseeing (Peter Nestler, 1968)
Smilin’ Through (Frank Borzage, 1941)
Snow Moves (Caroline Avery, 1983)
Splendor in the Grass (Elia Kazan, 1961)
Wild River (Elia Kazan, 1960)
Stars in my Crown (Jacques Tourneur, 1950)
Studies In Chronovision (Louis Hock, 1975)
The Mexican Footage (Ron Rice, 1964)
Together (Peter Todd, 2018)
Under Capricorn (Alfred Hitchcock, 1949)
Under the Freeway (Guy Sherwin, 1995)
V.W. Vitesses Women (Claudine Eizykman, 1974)
Venice Pier (1976), Gary Beydler
What the Water Said (David Gatten, 1998-2007)
White Heat (Raoul Walsh, 1949)
White Road (Nicky Hamlyn, 1999)
Words & Planets (Laida Lertxundi, 2018)

Beoning (Burning, Lee Chang-Dong, 2018)

Victor Alicea 

Former Programmer for WUD Film at the University of Wisconsin-Madison

Annihilation (Alex Garland, 2018)
Roma (Alfonso Cuarón, 2018)
Sorry to Bother You (Boots Riley, 2018)
Beoning (Burning, Lee Chang-Dong, 2018)
The Death of Stalin (Armando Ianucci, 2017)
Oh Lucy! (Atsuko Hirayanagi, 2017)
Ralph Breaks the Internet (Phil Johnston and Rich Moore, 2018)
Chalard Games Goeng (Bad Genius, Nattawut Poonpiriya, 2017)
The Ballad of Buster Scruggs (Joel Coen & Ethan Coen, 2018)
The Favourite (Yorgos Lanthimos, 2018)
First Reformed  (Paul Schrader, 2017)
Isle of Dogs (Wes Anderson, 2018)
Eighth Grade (Bo Burnham, 2018)
Black Panther (Ryan Coogler, 2018)
Searching (Aneesh Chaganty, 2018)
BlacKKKlansman (Spike Lee, 2018)
Maineland  (Miao Wang, 2017)
Mandy  (Panos Cosmatos, 2018)
Won’t You Be My Neighbor (Morgan Neville, 2018)
Meari to Majo no Hana (Mary and the Witch’s Flower, Hiromasa Yonebayashi, 2017)

Michael J. Anderson 

Director of Curatorial Affairs at the Oklahoma City Museum of Art

1. The Mule  (Clint Eastwood)
2. Da xiang xi di er zuo (An Elephant Sitting Still, Hu Bo)
3. Ahlat Agaci (The Wild Pear Tree, Nuri Bilge Ceylan)
4. Jiang hu er nv (Ash Is Purest White, Jia Zhangke)
5. First Reformed  (Paul Schrader, 2017)
6. Dead Souls  (Wang Bing, 2018)
7. Fotbal Infinit (Infinite Football, Corneliu Porumboiu, 2018)
8. Le livre d’image  (The Image Book, Jean-Luc Godard, 2018) + Grandeur et décadence d’un petit commerce de cinéma  (The Rise and Fall of a Small Film Company, Jean Luc-Godard, 1986)
9. Beoning  (Burning, Lee Changdong, 2018)
10. Grass  (Hong Sangsoo, 2018)
11. Transit  (Christian Petzold, 2018)
12. Nelyubov  (Loveless, Andrey Zvyagintsev, 2017)
13. Isle of Dogs  (Wes Anderson, 2018)
14. Blue  (Apichatpong Weerasethakul, 2018)
15. You Were Never Really Here  (Lynne Ramsay, 2017)
16. Un beau soleil intérieur  (Let the Sunshine In, Claire Denis, 2017)
17. Sanpo suru shinryakusha  (Before We Vanish, Kiyoshi Kurosawa, 2017)
18. The Week Of  (Robert Smigel, 2018)
19. L’empire de la perfection (John McEnroe: In the Realm of Perfection, Julien Faraut, 2018)
20. Support the Girls  (Andrew Bujalski, 2018)
21. The Other Side of the Wind  (Orson Welles, 2018)
22. Old Love  (Park Kiyong, 2017)
23-25. 3 programs of German directors: Heinz Emigholz & Angela Schanelec on Mubi US, and Christian Petzold at Lincoln Center

Rowena Santos Aquino 

Los Angeles-based film lecturer and critic

Favourite films seen in 2018:
A Bread Factory Parts I and II (Patrick Wang, 2018)
Beoning (Burning, Lee Chang-dong, 2018)
Bisbee ‘17 (Robert Greene, 2018)
Blackkklansman (Spike Lee, 2018)
Da xiang xi di er zuo (An Elephant Sitting Still, Hu Bo, 2018)*
Jiang hu er nü (Ash is Purest White, Jia Zhangke, 2018)
Manbiki kazoku (Shoplifters, Hirokazu Koreeda, 2018)
Milla (Valérie Massadian, 2017)
Notes on an Appearance (Ricky D’ambrose, 2018)*
Rūgštus miškas (Acid Forest, Rugilė Barzdžiukaitė, 2018)*
Se Rokh (3 Faces, Jafar Panahi, 2018)
The Return (Malene Choi Jensen, 2018)*
The Rider (Chloé Zhao, 2017)
Those Who Are Fine (Dene wos guet geit, Cyril Schäublin, 2017)*
Additional notable film/maker discoveries of 2018:
Becoming Who I Was (Moon Chang-yong/Jeon Jin, 2017)*
Drift (Helena Wittman, 2017)*
Makala (Emmanuel Gras, 2017)
So-gong-nyeo (Microhabitat, Jeon Go-woon, 2017)*
Van Pao Te (Father to Son, Hsiao Ya-Chuan, 2018)
*directorial debut

Luke Aspell 

Writer and filmmaker, UK

Ordered alphabetically by makers’ names:
Gymnastics for Everyday Anxieties (Maria Anastassiou and Isabella Mongelli, 2017)
Le livre d’image (The Image Book, Jean-Luc Godard, 2018)
Se rokh  (3 Faces, Jafar Panahi, 2018)
Gens du lac (Jean-Marie Straub, 2018)
Ni de lian (Your Face, Tsai Ming-liang, 2018)
Blue (Apichatpong Weerasethakul, 2018)
The Other Side of the Wind (Orson Welles, 1976/2018)


translation and reSources manager based in london, has written for senses of cinema, and is a contributor to book are you in the house alone? a Tv movie compendium: 1964-1999

10 favourite new release films from 2018 shown in the UK, listed in alphabetical order:
Annihilation (Alex Garland, 2018)
First Man (Damien Chazelle, 2018)
Laissez bronzer les cadavres (Let the Corpses Tan, Hélène Cattet & Bruno Forzani, 2017)
L’amant Double (Double Lover, Francois Ozon, 2017)
Manbiki kazoku (Shoplifters, Hirokazu Koreeda, 2018)
Mom and Dad (Brian Taylor, 2017)
Phantom Thread (Paul Thomas Anderson, 2017)
Ready Player One (Steven Spielberg, 2018)
Sandome no satsujin (The Third Murder, Hirokazu Koreeda, 2017)
The Square (Ruben Östlund, 2017)

Michael Bartlett 

Writer and subtitler based in London

Ten Best New-ish Films of the Year 2018
Brawl in Cell Block 99  (S Craig Zahler, 2017)
La Camera de Claire (Claire’s Camera, Hong Sang-soo, 2017)
Gangbyeon hotel (Hotel By The River, Hong Sang-soo, 2018)
Free Solo  (Jimmy Chin/Elizabeth Chai Vasarhelyi, 2018)
Jiang hu er nv  (Ash Is Purest White, Jia Zhangke, 2018)
Manbiki Kazoku (Shoplifters, Koreeda Hirokazu, 2018)
Natemo sametemo  (Asako I + II, Ryusuke Hamaguchi, 2018)
The Other Side of the Wind  (Orson Welles, 2018)
Roma  (Alfonso Cuaron, 2018)
Voyage a travers la cinema francais (A Journey Through French Cinema, Bertrand Tavernier, 2016)
Wo bu shi Pan Jin Lian (I Am Not Madame Bovary, Feng Xiaogang, 2016)

Special Mention
Ahlat Agaci (The Wild Pear Tree, Nuri Bilge Ceylan2018)
Doubles Vies (Double Lives/Non-Fiction, Olivier Assayas2018)
Hereditary  (Ari Aster, 2018) – for its first hour at least

Most disappointing and/or overrated films of the year
Beoning (Burning, Lee Chang-dong, 2018)
Di qiu zui hou de ye wan (Long Day’s Journey Into Night, Bi Gan, 2018)
A Quiet Place  (John Krasinski, 2018)
The Shape of Water (Guillermo del Toro, 2017)

Rhett Bartlett 

The Hollywood Reporter Obituarist, ABC Radio Melbourne film reviewer

1. Isle of Dogs (Wes Anderson, 2018)

The rest in alphabetical order
22 July (Paul Greengrass, 2018)
Andre the Giant  (Jason Hehir, 2018)
Bobby Kennedy For President (Dawn Porter, 2018)
The Fourth Estate  (Liz Garbus, 2018)
Game Night (John Francis Daley, Jonathan Goldstein, 2018)
Jane Fonda in Five Acts (Susan Lacy, 2018)
Lady Bird (Greta Gerwig, 2018)
Mission: Impossible – Fallout  (Christopher McQuarrie, 2018)
Molly’s Game (Aaron Sorkin, 2018)
Searching (Aneesh Chaganty, 2018)
Solo: A Star Wars Story  (Ron Howard, 2018)
Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse (Peter Ramsey, Robert Persichetti Jr., Rodney Rothman, 2018)
Won’t You Be My Neighbour  (Morgan Neville, 2018)

22 July (Paul Greengrass, 2018)

Arta Barzanji 

Cinephile, and Student of Film at University of California, Los Angeles

A truly excellent year for cinema, 2018 had not only been possibly the best works of such contemporary masters like PTA, Lee Chang-dong, Christian Petzold and Lucrecia Martel, it also elevated previous ‘promising talents’ like Valérie Massadian and Radu Jude into established filmmakers whose mastery of the medium is unquestionable. The latest films of older European auteurs, from Godard to LVT and Haneke received mostly mixed and lukewarm reception and were denounced as too conservative or too daring or ignored. Nevertheless, they showed each auteur’s unwavering commitment to his own brand of cinema, despite pressures for change or compromise, and offered accomplished works that were not only welcome additions to the illustrious careers of their creators, but in many ways offered summations of them, and perhaps fitting finales. Aside from contemporary masters, 2018 also had a masterpiece from one who has himself passed away many a year ago, but his loyal disciples and “apostle(s)” were finally able to put together an approximation of his last film, for which every cinephile is eternally indebted to them. Not to be forgotten, 2018 was also a year of noteworthy achievements in genre movies as well as in, documentary with a number of films that reexamined forgotten histories, the pinnacle of which is undoubtedly the behemoth (both in length and accomplishment) latest masterwork from Wang Bing. In terms of thematics, it was refreshing to see a number of filmmakers, both in fiction and documentary, both in popular genre modes and more esoteric forms, recognize and tackle the pressing issue of labor, each in their own radically disparate style and approach.

1. The Other Side of the Wind (Orson Welles, 2018)
How can a film so temporally bound, so epochal, so timely, be displaced to 4 decades later and completed by a team of other filmmakers and still work brilliantly? Aside from the quality of literal timelessness of Welles’ films, this brings to mind what Ignatiy Vishnevetsky once wrote about another Welles masterpiece, that was also finished by other people (albeit for very different reasons):
“The reason we consider Welles one of the greatest directors is because the genius of his filmmaking lies on a level more basic than the finished film. A single sound recorded by Welles, a single bit of framing overseen by him, is powerful on its own.”
2. Beoning (Burning, Lee Chang-dong, 2018)
2. Phantom Thread (Paul Thomas Anderson, 2017)
4. Sǐ línghún (Dead Souls, Wang Bing, 2018)
5. The House That Jack Built (Lars von Trier, 2018)
6. Di qiu zui hou de ye wan (Long Day’s Journey Into Night, Bi Gan, 2018)
7. First Reformed (Paul Schrader, 2017)
8. Zama (Lucrecia Martel, 2017)
9. Transit (Christian Petzold, 2018)
10. The Favourite (Yorgos Lanthimos, 2018)
11. Le Livre d’Image (The Image Book, Jean-Luc Godard, 2018)
12. Happy End (Michael Haneke, 2017)
13. Milla (Valérie Massadian, 2017)
14. Inimi cicatrizate (Scarred Hearts, Radu Jude, 2016)
15. Geu-hu (The Day After, Hong Sang-soo, 2017)
16. Yoru wa mijikashi aruke yo otome (Night Is Short, Walk on Girl, Masaaki Yuasa, 2017)
17. Sorry To Bother You (Boots Riley, 2018)
18. Bisbee ‘17 (Robert Green, 2018)
19. Did You Wonder Who Fired the Gun? (Travis Wilkerson, 2017)
20. A Fábrica de Nada (The Nothing Factory, Pedro Pinho, 2017)
21. Manbiki Kazoku (Shoplifters, Hirokazu, Kore-eda, 2018)
22. Les Îles (Islands, Yann Gonzalez, 2017)
23. Support The Girls (Andrew Bujalski, 2018)
24. Caniba (Véréna Paravel and Lucien Castaing-Taylor, 2017)
25. Dark Web: Unfriended (Stephen Susco, 2018)
Disclaimer: 2018 films that I didn’t get to see because of their unavailability as of yet include Climax, The Grand Bizarre, High Life, Season of the Devil, Our Time and the two new Hong Sang-soo features, among others. I will consider for these for next year’s list.
Another group of films that I missed, were available, but I couldn’t watch them due to time constraints, and they include such widely acclaimed films like Good Luck, The Rider, 3/4, New York Public Library and Araby.
All and all, this is by no means a comprehensive list and it could very well have been different if I had time to watch many of the important films that I missed.


French film critic. Writes for “Brief, le magazine du court métrage,” “Europe, Revue Littérảie,” “encyclopaedia univeralis”

In no particular order.
Les Garçons sauvages (The Wild Boys, Bertrand Mandico, 2017)
Mektoub my love: canto Uno (Mektoub, My love: Canto Uno, Abdellatif Kechiche, 2017)
9 doigts( 9 Fingers, F.J. Ossang, 2018)
Beo-ning( Burning, Lee Chang-dong, 2018)
Donbass (Sergei Loznitsa, 2018)
Incident in a Ghostland (Pascal Laugier, 2018)
Šerkšnas (Frost, Šarūnas Bartas, 2018)
The House that Jack Built (Lars Von Trier, 2018)
Mary Shelley (Haifaa al-Mansour, 2018)
Manbiki Kazoku (Shoplifters, Hirokazu Kore-Eda, 2018)
What You Gonna Do When the World’s on Fire? (Roberto Minervini, 2018)
Dailies From Dumpland (Michael Woods, 2018)

I have chosen twelve films.  All were distributed in 2018 in cinemas in France, with the exception of Dailies From Dumpland by Michael Woods, the first feature film by a young American underground filmmaker shown in the 20th edition of the Festival des cinémas différents et expérimentaux de Paris in October.
Three French directors, Bertrand Mandico, F.J. Ossang and Pascal Laugier made very surprising and graphically disturbing films in the style of the  “fantasy” genre. Mandico’s film has inherited largely from Cocteau; Laugier is a great fan of Dario Argento and Gustave Doré; while Ossang continues to work in a very special and original aesthetic style of counterculture films. The “wonder boy” of Franco-Tunisian cinema, Abdellatif Kechiche, has transformed his narrative style in a remembrance of Cassavetes’ first films: long shots observing the subtle motions of his actor-subjects.
This year, once again, Asian cinema brought us some good films. The Japanese veteran, Hirokazu Kore-Eda, made Shoplifters, a social and lyric film with echoes of Nagisa Oshima’s Boy (Shōnen, 1969). One of the Great Korean “cinéastes,” Lee Chang-dong delivers Burning, an astonishing masterpiece of shadows and mysteries on a great Asian cultural level about the phenomenon of disappearing, the disappearing of persons and of social criteria. On the Eastern frontier of Europe, the Ukrainian “troublemaker” Sergei Loznitsa promotes in Donbass a very ludicrous, “ubuesque” vision of Putin’s aggressive Russia. On the opposite side, the Lithuanian genius Šarūnas Bartas made Frost his most lyric “oeuvre,” his most accessible film, but a marvellous one.
I was skeptical before seeing Mary Shelley, the “biopic” by the Saudi Arabian woman filmmaker Haifaa al-Mansour, whose previous film Wadjda was astonishing. But this portrait of the pioneer who wrote the cult classic Frankenstein in the early nineteenth Century is highly pertinent and curiously strong in the depiction of a woman’s aspiration for personal, social and psychological independence.
On a very different level, in spite of its misogynist content, The House that Jack Built by the Danish Lars Von Trier appears to me to be a masterpiece, a sardonic and inhuman masterpiece like Pier Paolo Pasolini’s Salò, or the 120 Days of Sodom (1975), a difficult film to see even fifty years later, but one that is necessary to see.
I will finish my brief survey of 2018 with two independent films. The Italian documentary maker Roberto Minervini made a very strong semi-documentary film on the catastrophic situation of Afro-Americans in the deep American South, whereas the experimental filmmaker, Michael Woods gave us his first feature film, an immersive experience oscillating between paralyzing nightmare and intoxicating activism. Combining 16mm hand developed footage and digital forms such as glitch and datamoshing, Dailies From Dumpland is an anti-Trump pamphlet, and a visionary and documentary work about the current political situation in the United States.
[IMAGE: Lazarro]
[Lazzaro felice (Happy as Lazzaro, Alice Rohrwacher, 2018)]

Conor Bateman 

writer, video essayist, and one of the managing editors of 4:3 an independent film website based in Sydney, Australia

Transit (Christian Petzold, 2018)
Tara Moarta (The Dead Nation, Radu Jude, 2018)
Beoning (Burning, Lee Chang-dong, 2018)
Da xiang xi di er zuo (An Elephant Sitting Still, Hu Bo, 2018)
Climax (Gaspar Noé, 2018)
You Were Never Really Here (Lynne Ramsay, 2017)
Netemo sametemo (Asako I & II, Ryûsuke Hamaguchi)
Acute Misfortune (Thomas M. Wright, 2018)
Touch Me Not (Adina Pintilie, 2018)
Lazzaro felice (Happy as Lazzaro, Alice Rohrwacher, 2018)
Lasting Marks (Charlie Lyne, 2018)
Watching the Detectives (Chris Kennedy, 2017)
Silica (Pia Borg, 2017)
Wishing Well (Sylvia Schedelbauer, 2018)
I Have Sinned a Rapturous Sin (Maryam Tafakory, 2018)
Final Deployment 4: Queen Battle Walkthrough (Casper Kelly, 2018)

Gustavo Beck 

Filmmaker, Programmer, producer, critic

Le Livre D’Image (The Image Book, Jean-Luc Godard, 2018)
Gli Indesiderati d’Europa ( Fabrizio Ferraro, 2018)
La Flor – Parte 2 (The Flower- Part 2, Mariano Llinás, 2018)
Lazarro Felice (Happy as Lazzaro, Alice Rohrwacher, 2018)
L. Cohen (James Benning, 2018)
Monrovia, Indiana (Frederick Wiseman, 2018)
Si Linghun (Dead Souls, Wang Bing, 2018)
Gang-Byun Hotel (Hotel by the River, Hong Sang-soo, 2018)
Beoning (Burning, Lee Chang-dong, 2018)
Grass (Hong Sang-soo, 2018)
Jiang Hu Er Nu (Ash is purest white, Jia Zhangke, 2018)
A Portugesa (The Portuguese Women, Rita Azevedo Gomes, 2018)
I Diari di Angela – Noi Due Cineasti (Angela’s Diaries- Two Filmmakers, Yervant Gianikian, Angela Ricci Lucchi, 2018)
Da Xiang Xi Di Er Zuo (An Elephant Sitting Still, Hu Bo, 2018)
Waldeheims Walzer (The Waldheim Waltz, Ruth Beckermann, 2018)
Di Qui Zui Hou De Ye Wan (Long Day’s Journey into Night, Bi Gan, 2018)
Netemo Sametemo (Asako I & II, Ryûsuke Hamaguchi, 2018)
Ni De Lian (Your Face, Tsai Ming-liang, 2018)
Roi Soleil (Albert Serra, 2018)
Segunda Vez (Second time Around, Dora Garcia, 2018)
Lamaland – Teil I (Lamaland- Part I, Pablo Sigg, 2018)
Seducao da Carne (Seduction, Júlio Bressane, 2018)
Transit (Christian Petzold, 2018)
Process (Sergei Loznitsa, 2018)
Nice Girls Don’t Stay For Breakfast (Bruce Weber, 2018)

Sean Bell 

Pop culture blogger based in Italy titled “Sex and the Eternal City”

Themes of the year:
Black and white is the new black. Form and substance combined to heart rending effect in both Cold War and Roma, whose use of black and white and ratio (academy in the former, 65 mm in the latter) made every frame framable in their nostalgic tales of everyday heartbreak.
Women and minorities go to the movies too. Issues of representation were up front in Black Panther and Widows – a film in which multi-ethnic female resourcefulness trumps white male cowardice. However, neither would have made this list if they weren’t both satisfying genre flicks: a twisty thriller and a Marvel movie with the imaginative use of location and technology that give the best Bond films their frisson.
Gee families are hard work. Love was thicker than blood between Cleo and her charges in Roma and the modern day Fagin’s gang of Shoplifters  but the fraught familial bonds played out by Toni Collette and Alex Wolff in Hereditary, Thomasin McKenzie and Ben Foster in Leave No Trace, and Emily Blunt and Millicent Simmonds in A Quiet Place were complex and startlingly rendered.
Netflix saves Christmas (and cinema, maybe). While metrosexuals with the luxury of art house cinemas in easy reach wrung their hands over Netflix’s policy of cinema releases, I was just thankful to be able to see Roma, The Ballad of Buster Scruggs, Private Life, Annihilation and The Land of Steady Habits in any platform whatsoever. Oh and Netflix also provided Rome with its first decent Christmas tree in years. As Roger Ebert once said: So many great films this year – some gained awards attention in 2017 (Paul Thomas Anderson’s delicious black comedy, Phantom Thread) and some will get their due next year (Barry Jenkins’s reverential adaptation of If Beale Street Could Talk) so as my favourite film of 2018 I want to flag up the criminally overlooked Lean On Pete. Andrew Haigh’s beautiful film is a worthy companion piece to Kelly Reichardt’s Wendy & Lucy and a shining example of movies as empathy machines.

The List:
Lean On Pete (Andrew Haigh, 2017)
Leave No Trace (Debra Granik, 2018)
Manbiki Kazoku (Shoplifters, Hirokazu Kore-eda, 2018).
Roma (Alfonso Cuarón, 2018)
Cold War (Pawel Pawlikowski, 2018)
Phantom Thread (Paul Thomas Anderson, 2017)
Widows (Steve McQueen, 2018)
If Beale Street Could Talk (Barry Jenkins, 2018)
Three Billboards Outside Ebbing Missouri (Martin McDonagh, 2017)
Coco (Lee Unkrich, Adrian Molina, 2017)
Black Panther (Ryan Coogler, 2018)
A Quiet Place  (John Krasinski, 2018)
Tully (Jason Reitman, 2018)
Private Life (Tamara Jenkins, 2018)
The Wife (Björn Runge, 2017)
BlacKkKlansman (Spike Lee, 2018)
RBG (Julie Cohen, Betsy West, 2018)
Isle of Dogs (Wes Anderson, 2018)
Annihilation (Alex Garland, 2018)
120 battements par minute (120 BPM, Robin Campillo, 2017)

Malik Berkati 

Berlin-based Swiss film critic and political scientist

A spontaneous short list of films that comes back to mind about the thousand films seen this year. There are certainly some very good films missing and it is not impossible that some have appeared in this list depending on the mood of the moment. However, with the exception of de facto masterpieces, it is this conjuncture subjectivity that makes the magic of cinema!
An Act of Defiance (Jean van de Velde, 2017)
Black 47 (Lance Daly, 2018)
Burning (Lee Chang-dong, 2018)
Zimna Wojna (Cold War, Paweł Pawlikowski , 2018)
Dà fó pǔ lā sī (The Great Buddha , Huang Hsin-yao, 2017)
Dovlatov (Alexey German Jr., 2018)
Eldorado (Markus Imhoof, 2018)
En attendant les hirondelles (Until the Birds Return, Karim Moussaoui, 2017)
Figlia mia (Daughter of Mine, Laura Bispuri, 2018)
Girl (Lukas Dhont, 2018)
Hojoom (Invasion, Shahram Mokri, 2018)
Horizonti (Horizon, Tinatin Kajrishvili, 2018)
In den Gängen (In the Aisles, Thomas Stuber, 2018)
Jiānghú érnǚ (Ash is purest white, Jia Zhang-ke, 2018)
Khook (Pig, Mani Haghighi, 2018)
Kishon (Eliav Lilti , 2017)
Kona fer í stríð (Woman at War, Benedikt Erlingsson, 2018)
Las herederas (The Heiresses, Marcelo Martinessi, 2018)
Lazzaro felice (Happy as Lazzaro, Alice Rohrwache, 2018)
Leaf of Life (Ebrahim Mokhtari, 2017)
Le Livre d’image (The Image Book, Jean-Luc Godard, 2018)
Loro (Paolo Sorrentino, 2018)
Milla (Valérie Massadian, 2017)
Namme (Zaza Khalvashi, 2017)
Styx (Wolfgang Fischer , 2018)
Toppen av ingenting (The Real Estate, Måns Månsson & Axel Petersén, 2018)
Transit (Christian Petzold, 2018)
Troppa grazia (Lucia’s Grace, Gianni Zanasi, 2018)
Shéhérazade (Jean-Bernard Marlin, 2018)
The Guilty (Gustav Möller, 2018)
Utøya 22. Juli (Utøya: July 22,  Erik Poppe, 2018)
Waldheims Walzer (The Waldheim Waltz, Ruth Beckermann, 2018)

Giulia Bindi 

Research Student of Film and Screen Media at Birkbeck, University of London, UK

Favourite 30 films released in UK in 2018.

My top ten, in order of preference:
Roma  (Alfonso Cuarón, 2018)
Zimna Wojna (Cold War, Paweł Pawlikowski, 2018).
Lazzaro Felice  (Happy as Lazzaro, Alice Rohrwacher, 2018)
Phantom Thread  (Paul Thomas Anderson, 2017)
Una Mujer Fantástica (A Fantastic Woman, Sebastiàn Lelio, 2017)
Beoning (Burning, Lee Chang-dong, 2018)
Women Making Films: A New Road Movie Through Cinema (Mark Cousins, 2018)
Blackkklansman( Spike Lee, 2018)
Ahlat Ağacı  (The Wild Pear Tree, Nuri Bilge Ceylan, 2018)
The Favourite (Yorgos Lanthimos, 2018)

The further 20 films in alphabetical order:
Assassination Nation  (Sam Levinson, 2018)
Aurore  (I Got Life!, Blandine Lenoir, 2017)
The Ballad of Buster Scruggs  (Joel Coen, Ethan Coen, 2018)
Un Beau Soleil Intérieur  (Let the Sunshine In, Claire Denis, 2017)
Black Panther  (Ryan Coogler, 2018)
Coco  (Lee Unkrich, 2017)
Disobedience  (Sebastián Lelio, 2017)
Dogman (Matteo Garrone, 2018)
Isle of Dogs (Wes Alderson, 2018)
I, Tonya  (Craig Gillespie, 2017)
The Miseducation of Cameron Post  (Desiree Akhavan, 2018)
Manbiki Kazoku  (Shoplifters, Hirokazu Kore-eda, 2018)
Monrovia, Indiana  (Frederick Wiseman, 2018)
Nelyubov  (Loveless, Andrey Zvyagintsev, 2017)
The Old Man and the Gun  (David Lowery, 2018)
Sorry to Bother You  (Boots Riley, 2018)
The Square (Ruben Östlund, 2017)
Western (Valeska Grisebach, 2017)
The Wife  (Björn Runge, 2017)
Wildlife  (Paul Dano, 2018)

Ahlat Ağacı  (The Wild Pear Tree, Nuri Bilge Ceylan, 2018)

Ken Bowes 

Cinephile, Melbourne, Australia

Favorite 21 Releases of 2018:
1.  Da xiang xi di er zuo (An Elephant Sitting Still, Bo Hu, 2018)
2.  Roma (Alfonso Cuaron, 2018)
3.  The Rider (Chloe Zhao, 2017)
4.  We the Animals (Jeremiah Zagar, 2018)
5.  Manbiki Kazoku  (Shoplifters, Hirokazu Koreeda, 2018)
6.  You were Never Really Here (Lynne Ramsay, 2017)
7.  Beoning (Burning, Lee Chang-dong, 2018)
8.  Lazzaro felice (Happy as Lazzaro, Alice Rohrwacher, 2018)
9.  First Reformed (Paul Schrader, 2017)
10. Ying (Shadow, Zhang Yimou, 2018)
11. Den Skyldige (The Guilty, Gustav Moller, 2018)
12. Lean on Pete (Andrew Haigh, 2017)
13. Kamera o tomeru na! (One Cut of the Dead,  Shin’ichiro Ueda, 2017)
14. Distant Sky: Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds – Live in Copenhagen (David Barnard, 2018)
15. A Prayer Before Dawn (Jean-Stephane Sauvaire, 2017)
16. Isle of Dogs (Wes Anderson, 2018)
17. Ryuichi Sakamoto: Coda (Stephen Nomura Schible, 2017)
18. No Date, No Signature (Vahid Jalilvand, 2017)
19. Egy nap (One Day, Zsofia Szilagyi, 2018)
20. Donbass (Sergey Loznitsa, 2018)
21. The Death of Stalin (Armando Iannucci, 2017)

Favorite Retrospectives & screenings:
1.John Cassavetes at Melbourne Cinematheque
2. La battaglia di Algeri (The Battle of Algiers, Gillo Pontecorvo, 1966) seen at the Human Rights Arts & Film Festival
3. Montgomery Clift at Melbourne Cinematheque
4. Panelstory aneb Jakse rodi sidliste (Prefab Story, Vera Chytilova, 1979) seen at Czech & Slovak Film Festival
5. Edward Yang at Melbourne Cinematheque
6. Kudos to the Programmers of the Japanese Film Festival for the free Classics component the 2018 Festival; it was as outstanding & generous as it was thoughtful.

Lukas Brasiskis 

PhD Candidate at the Department of Cinema Studies, New York University. Film curator. Writer and film critic at Senses of Cinema and Lithuanian film journal Kinas

The ten favorite films I have seen in 2018:
Phantom Thread (Paul Thomas Anderson, 2017)
First Reformed (Paul Schrader, 2018)
Di qiu zui hou de ye wan (Long Day’s Journey Into Night, Bi Gan, 2018)
Beoning (Burning, Lee Chang-dong, 2018)
High Life (Claire Denis, 2018)
Classical Period (Ted Fendt, USA, 2018)
Ni de lian (Your Face, Tsai Ming-liang, 2018)
Gangbyeon hotel (Hotel by the River, Hong Sangsoo, South Korea, 2018)
Asako I & II  (Ryûsuke Hamaguchi, 2018)
Also Known As Jihadi (Éric Baudelaire, 2017)

Other films I enjoyed greatly and want to mention despite that they have not made to my top 10:
Three Faces (Jafar Panahi, 2018)
Cold War (Pawel Pawlikowski, 2018)
You Were Never Really Here (Lynne Ramsay, 2017)
Manbiki Kazoku (Shoplifters, Hirokazu Koreeda, 2018)
Rugštus miškas (Acid Forest, Rugilė Barzdžiukaitė, 2018)
La Flor (The Flower, Mariano Llinás, 2018)
Lazzaro felice (Happy as Lazzaro, Alice Rohrwacher, 2018)
Monrovia, Indiana (Frederick Wiseman, 2018)
L. COHEN (James Benning, 2018)
Cassandro the Exotico! (Marie Losier, 2018)
Lembro mais dos Corvos (I Remember the Crows, Gustavo Vinagre, 2018)
Grass (Hong Sangsoo, 2018)
Roma (Alfonso Cuarón, 2018)
End of Life (John Bruce and Paweł Wojtasik, 2018)
Transit (Christian Petzold, 2018)
The Grand Bizarre  (Jodie Mack, 2018)
A Family Tour (Ying Liang, 2018)
Donbass (Serguei Loznitsa, 2017)
Rabot (Christina Vandekerckhove, 2017)
Meteorlar (Meteors, Gürcan Keltek, 2017)
Between Relating and Use (Nazli Dinçel, 2018)
The Glass Note (Mary Helena Clark, 2018)

Samuel Bréan 

Paris-based translator and researcher. Co-editor of the online journal L’Écran traduit

Best new films viewed by alphabetical order:
Classical Period (Ted Fendt, 2018)
The Green Fog (Guy Maddin, Galen Johnson, Evan Johnson, 2017)
In Fabric (Peter Strickland, 2018)
Leave No Trace (Debra Granik, 2018)
Porte sans clef (No Key, Pascale Bodet, 2018)
The Rider (Chloe Zhao, 2018)
Sophia Antipolis (Virgil Vernier, 2018)
Sorry to Bother You (Boots Riley, 2018)
The Wind (Emma Tammi, 2018)
Zama (Lucrecia Martel, 2017)

Best new film books:
David Faroult, Godard, inventions d’un cinéma politique 1966-1973 (Paris: Les Prairies Ordinaires, 2018)
Jean Narboni, Samuel Fuller, un homme à fables (Nantes : Capricci, 2018)
Jacques Rivette, Textes critiques (Paris: Post-éditions, 2018)

In Fabric (Peter Strickland, 2018)


Wisconsin cinephile & student

1. The 15:17 to Paris  (Clint Eastwood, 2018)
Almost 90 years old and Clint Eastwood reinvents the cinema. There’s more aesthetic originality and philosophical depth here than anyone knows what to do with, and it all comes to a head in one of the most unspeakably moving and unbearably haunting climaxes in the history of the medium. Oh, and then Eastwood completely shatters the border between cinema and reality (again) in a coda that every one of us should be wrestling with for the rest of our lives.
2. First Man  (Damien Chazelle, 2018)
A picture that reorients humanity’s relationship with the galaxy and with itself. Damien Chazelle bypasses the rote methodology of the biographical film to reach heights of metaphysical insight rarely achieved anywhere let alone in a prestige Hollywood movie. It burrows so deeply into the inner life of Gosling’s Armstrong that the specific becomes the universal; the particulars of his story become a microcosm for the history of mankind itself
3. Phantom Thread  (Paul Thomas Anderson, 2017)
Anderson’s film suggests cinema as a vehicle for pure aesthetic pleasure; an exacting and fluid style that makes us wonder why more films aren’t capable of producing such sensorial and visual delight. This aesthetic rigor is filled in and colored by the eternal story of man and woman; it’s bounteous offering of thoughts and ideas on the matter spirals in on itself to create a treasure trove of interlocking paradoxes and contradictions, all delivered with the sharpness of secret truths.
4. A Star Is Born  (Bradley Cooper, 2018)
Cooper’s debut soars on the sheer exuberance of love and music and cinema, producing reactions of jarring physiological power, reacquainting us with the emotionality of the cinematic medium one scene at a time. But the film has more on its mind than high flying inspiration; it quickly descends into much darker thematic territory, mirroring life’s highs and lows even to the most desolate of conclusions. To prove cinema’s ability to capture life in ways life itself cannot, the film also contains a number of the most devastating cuts in the history of film.
5. The Mule  (Clint Eastwood, 2018)
Eastwood puts himself on trial and finds himself guilty; an on-screen reckoning for the ages, the outline of a true story provides the framing for Eastwood to investigate not just his own personal failures but those of the American patriarchal system over the last century. The ease with which Eastwood strings his film together in order to steer it into a perfectly-pitched melodrama of melancholy regret  belies his true purpose here; art as confession and cinema as plea for forgiveness.
6. Columbus  (Kogonada, 2017)
7. The Other Side of the Wind  (Orson Welles, 2018)
8. First Reformed  (Paul Schrader, 2017)
9. Spring Night, Summer Night  (Joseph L. Anderson, 1967)
10. Bamui haebyun-eoseo honja  (On the Beach at Night Alone, Hong Sang-soo, 2017)
11. Grandeur et décadence d’un petit commerce de cinéma  (The Rise and Fall of a Small Film Company, Jean-Luc Godard, 1986)
12. Mission: Impossible – Fallout  (Christopher McQuarrie, 2018)
13. Ready Player One  (Steven Spielberg, 2018)
14. Unsane  (Steven Soderbergh, 2018)
15. Actor Martinez  (Nathan Silver & Mike Ott, 2016)
16. Golden Exits  (Alex Ross Perry, 2017)
17. La caméra de Claire  (Claire’s Camera, Hong Sang-soo, 2017)
18. Werewolf  (Ashley McKenzie, 2016)
19. Sollers Point  (Matthew Porterfield, 2017)
20. The Old Man & the Gun  (David Lowery, 2018)
21. L’amant d’un jour  (Lover for a Day, Philippe Garrel, 2017)
22. Maison du bonheur  (Sofia Bohdanowicz, 2017)
23. Isle of Dogs  (Wes Anderson, 2018)
24. The Commuter  (Jaume Collet-Serra, 2018)
25. The Ballad of Buster Scruggs  (Joel & Ethan Coen, 2018)
26. 9 doigts  (9 Fingers, F.J. Ossang, 2017)

Lisa Broad 

Film programmer based in Oklahoma City

1. Da xiang xi di er zuo  (An Elephant Sitting Still, Hu Bo, 2018)
2. First Reformed  (Paul Schrader, 2017)
3. Beoning  (Burning, Lee Changdong, 2018)
4. You Were Never Really Here  (Lynne Ramsay, 2017)
5. Sanpo suru shinryakusha  (Before We Vanish, Kiyoshi Kurosawa, 2017)
6.  Grandeur et décadence d’un petit commerce de cinéma  (The Rise and Fall of a Small Film Company, Jean Luc-Godard, 1986)
7. Fotbal Infinit (Infinite Football, Corneliu Porumboiu, 2018)
8. The Meyerowitz Stories (New and Selected) (Noah Baumbach, 2017)
9. Phantom Thread (P.T. Anderson, 2017)
10. Grass  (Hong Sangsoo, 2018)
11. The Green Fog (Guy Maddin, Evan Johnson, and Galen Johnson, 2017)
12 Support the Girls (Andrew Bujalski, 2018)
13. L’empire de la perfection (John McEnroe: In the Realm of Perfection, Julien Faraut, 2018)
14. Un beau soleil intérieur  (Let the Sunshine In, Claire Denis, 2017)
15. Vinterbrødre (Winter Brothers, Hlynur Pálmason, 2017)

Samantha Broadhead 

Head Of Research, Leeds Arts University, UK; interested in the fabric of film

I am sure many horror connoisseurs would agree that 2018 has been a wonderful year for innovative films. The strongest were those creators who reimagined the conventions of the genre but without totally dismantling them. The body of work marked out in this contribution to the world poll shows that some horror narratives can be novel and ground-breaking.  At the same time, an informed audience can take pleasure from their knowingness about the horror genre.  This year was also a welcomed celebration of the older woman in horror; Jamie Lee Curtis; Tilda Swindon; Jessica harper; Charlotte Rampling; Lin Shaye to name but a few.  The entries are listed according to my estimation of their merit; the most accomplished being first.

You Were Never Really Here (Lynne Ramsay, 2018)
Beautiful cinematography supports an enigmatic narrative, which slowly unwinds until it is punctuated by points of startling, visceral violence. Joaquin Phoenix’s performance as Joe is mesmerising as a damaged, vulnerable but ruthless killer.

Halloween (David Gordon Green, 2018)
It is fantastic to see a slasher film that plays masterfully with the established conventions of the genre. The opening credits are simple, effective and powerfully recall the original film. John Carpenter’s iconic score enhances the sequence, where the camera follows Michael (also known as the shape) as he moves through the small-town community.  As always, there is the potential for yet another sequel; evil never dies.

Suspiria (Luca Guadagnino, 2018)
This is a brave endeavour, in light of the following Suspiria, Dario Argento, 1977 commands in the horror film community. In spite of my initial scepticism, the film is an engaging and subtlety humorous cinematic experience. Although, there is a small part played by Jessica Harper (played the protagonist in the original) the film is able to establish its own particular style and narrative that is independent from the 1977 version.

Mandy (Panos Cosmatos, 2018)
This film is a powerful sensory experience. Stylistically, it reminded me of Suspiria, Dario Argento, 1977 mentioned above. Visually it evokes a particular time and place through a psychedelic haze that did not decrease the impact of the violence and horror.

Annihilation (Alex Garland, 2018)

Reminiscent of Tarkovsky’s Solaris (1972) or Stalker (1979) this beautiful film is eerie and philosophically provoking. A group of female scientists and military personnel travel into a mysterious zone where biological entities are forming and re-forming according to unknown laws of nature.

Hereditary (Ari Aster, 2018)
All cast members give great dramatic performances in this original horror film.  Surprisingly, it has been compared to the Exorcist, William Friedkin, 1973. However, thematically I would say it is closer to Rosemary’s Baby, Roman Polanski, 1968. Family dynamics are really a veneer that hides callous treachery and demon worship.

A Quiet Place (John Krasinski, 2018)
This film leads me think about how we behave as an audience. It is effective in making people listen and taking more care in not making detracting noise.  In some ways, it is a conventional narrative about guilt and redemption. However, the film is edited beautifully in order to cause tension, threat and jeopardy on a domestic scale

The Little Stranger (Lenny Abrahamson, 2018)
In post-war Britain, the landed gentry were losing their estates and family houses. Through educational opportunities, the working classes were gaining access to careers in the professions. The Little Stranger, an adaptation of the book by Sarah Waters (2009), is set within this context of social upheaval. There is well judged acting from a fabulous cast. In particular, where British upper class reserve is tested during one scene of visceral bloody horror.

Secret Santa (Adam Marcus, 2018)
The Christmas horror movie has a long tradition, for example, Black Christmas, Bob Clark, 1974. Secret Santa playfully comments on the annual family holiday, where people harbour resentments and petty jealousies while putting on a show of ‘good cheer’. A soundtrack of discordant Christmas songs enhances the tone of mockery. Needless to say; things do not end well.

The Nun (Corin Hardy, 2018)
Although there may some flaws in this spin-off from Conjuring 2: The Enfield Case, James Wan. 2016, the visual style is captivating. The revisiting of the gothic through the landscape, the ecclesiastical architecture and the catholic iconography is reminiscent of the old Hammer films of the 50s and 60s. These nuns are very, very scary.  Bonnie Aarons looks fabulously sinister as the demon nun known as Valak.

Insidious: The Last Key (Adam Robitel, 2018)
I have included this film, as it was the first one I saw early in 2018. The premise of an older woman being at the centre of a horror narrative is one, which has been reiterated throughout the year.  The Insidious franchise built upon slick art direction and copious jump scares has had mixed critical reviews. It is a shame that more focus was not given on Lin Shaye’s leading role rather than making the plot too complicated with additional characters.

Terror Nullius  (Soda_Jerk, 2018)

Dan Browne 

Toronto-based filmmaker and scholar

Eighteen films for 2018 in no particular order:
Biidaaban: First Light (Lisa Jackson, 2018)
Becoming Animal (Emma Davie and Peter Mettler, 2018)
Traje de Luces (Francisca Duran, 2018)
Erodium Thunk (Winston Hacking, 2018)
Terror Nullius  (Soda_Jerk, 2018)
Fainting Spells (Sky Hopinka, 2018)
Please step out of the frame  (Karissa Hahn, 2018)
Fallen Arches (Simon Liu, 2018)
The Grand Bizarre  (Jodie Mack, 2018)
The Air of the Earth in Your Lungs  (Ross Meckfessel, 2018)
A Return (James Edmonds, 2018)
Instructions on How to Make a Film (Nazlı Dinçel, 2018)
Dailies From Dumpland (M. Woods, 2018)
God Straightens Legs (Joële Walinga, 2018)
Saint Bathans Repetitions  (Alexandre Larose, 2016)
Territorio (Alexandra Cuesta, 2016)
Second Star (Scott Fitzpatrick, 2015–18)
The Rub (Péter Lichter and Bori Máté, 2018)


A two-headed, four-handed, single-minded beast of an entity provided with sheer critical wit and relentlessness with which it hunts upon its doomed prey

Assasination Nation (Sam Levinson, 2018). We are the good people!
Cutterhead (Rasmus Kloster Bro, 2018). Brexit in a nutshell: No. Way. Out.
In Fabric (Peter Strickland, 2018). A fascination of range in delight, capture and seduction.
Hmyz (Insect, Jan Švankmajer, 2018). Us two is an insect, too.
Jusqu’à la garde (Custody, Xavier Legrand, 2017). Miriam, I’m home.
Possum (Matthew Holness, 2018). Little boy, don’t lose your way, Possum wants to come and play.
Les garçons sauvages (The Wild Boys, Bertrand Mandico, 2017). Wild boys always shine.

Honourable mention:
Postava k podpírání (Josef Kilian, Pavel Juráček, Jan Schmidt, 1963) & Prípad Barnabáš Kos (The Barnabáš Kos Case, Peter Solan, 1964) – a double bill at the Tallinn Black Nights Film Festival 2018

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