Daniel Kasman

Daniel Kasman is VP of Content at MUBI and Editor-in-Chief of Notebook and the Notebook magazine.


  • Atlanta, Seasons 3 & 4 (Directors various, 2022)
  • Crimes of the Future (David Cronenberg, 2022)
  • EAMI (Paz Encina, 2022)
  • Kimi (Steven Soderbergh, 2022)
  • Mr. Landsbergis (Sergei Loznitsa, 2021)
  • Prey (Dan Trachtenberg, 2022) [Comanche dub]
  • The Rehearsal, Season 1 (Nathan Fielder, 2022)
  • Saint Omer (Alice Diop, 2022)
  • San taam daai zin (Detectives vs. Sleuths, Wai Ka-fai, 2022)
  • Showing Up (Kelly Reichardt, 2022)


  • Ich bei Tag und du bei Nacht (I by Day, You by Night, Ludwig Berger, 1932)
  • All films directed by Kinuyo Tanaka (1953–1962)
  • Black Tuesday (Hugo Fregonese, 1954)
  • Tri (Three, Aleksandar Petrović, 1965)
  • Buck and the Preacher (Sidney Poiter, 1972)
  • Kahdeksan surmanluotia (Eight Deadly Shots, Mikko Niskanen, 1972)
  • Nihon kyôka den (The Blossom and the Sword, Tai Kato, 1973)
  • Dar Ghorbat (Far from Home, Sohrab Shahid Saless, 1975)
  • De cierta manera (One Way or Another, Sara Gómez, 1977)
  • The Hidden (Jack Sholder, 1987)


  • Darkness, Darkness, Burning Bright (Gaëlle Rouard, 2022)
  • L’enfant (The Child, Marguerite de Hillerin, Félix Dutilloy-Liégeois, 2022)
  • Mato seco em chamas (Dry Ground Burning, Joana Pimenta, Adirley Queirós, 2022)
  • Naj-eneun deobgo bam-eneun chubgo (Hot in Day, Cold at Night, Park Songyeol, 2021)
  • The Plains (David Easteal, 2022)
  • Rewind & Play (Alain Gomis, 2022)
  • Rimini (Ulrich Seidl, 2022)
  • Robe of Gems (Natalia López, 2022)
  • Unrueh (Unrest, Cyril Schäublin, 2022)
  • Queens of the Qing Dynasty (Ashley McKenzie, 2022)

Christopher Kearney

ndependent screenwriter; teaches TV Production and English at George M. Steinbrenner High School in Lutz, Florida.

Top ten films of of 2022

  1. Benediction (Terrence Davies, 2021)  
  2. Vortex (Gaspar Noé, 2021) 
  3. L’événement (Happening, Audrey Diwan, 2021) 
  4. Tár (Todd Field, 2022) 
  5. Blonde (Andrew Dominik, 2022)  
  6. Everything Everywhere All at Once (Dan Kwan, Daniel Scheinert, 2022)  
  7. The Banshees of Inisherin (Martin McDonagh, 2022) 
  8. The Forgiven (John Michael McDonagh, 2021)   
  9. Heojil kyolshim (Decision to Leave, Park Chan-wook, 2022)  
  10. The Fabelmans (Steven Spielberg, 2022)  

Best documentary features

  1. Fire of Love (Sara Dosa, 2022)  
  2. Moonage Daydream (Brett Morgan, 2022)
  3. Gabbie Giffords Won’t Back Down (Julie Cohen, Betsy West, 2022)

  Best animated features

  1. Mad God (Phil Tippet, 2021)  
  2. Marcel the Shell with Shoes On (Dean Fleischer-Camp, 2021)  
  3. Guillermo del Toro’s Pinocchio (Guillermo del Toro, 2022) 

  Honourable mentions

  • Aftersun (Charlotte Wells, 2022)
  • Argentina, 1985 (Santiago Mitre, 2022)
  • Avatar: The Way of Water (James Cameron, 2022)
  • Babylon (Damien Chazelle, 2022)
  • Barbarian (Zach Cregger, 2022)
  • Competencia oficial (Official Competition, Mariano Cohn, Gastón Duprat, 2021)
  • De uskyldige (The Innocents, Eskil Vogt, 2021)
  • Empire of Light (Sam Mendes, 2022)
  • Fresh (Mimi Cave, 2022)
  • Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery (Rian Johnson, 2022)
  • Im Westen nichts Neues (All Quiet on the Western Front, Edward Berger, 2022)
  • A Love Song (Max Walker-Silverman, 2022)
  • Lvx Æterna (Gaspar Noé, 2019)
  • Men (Alex Garland, 2022)
  • The Menu (Mark Mylod, 2022)
  • The Northman (Robert Eggers)
  • Pearl (Ti West, 2022)
  • Petite maman (Céline Sciamma, 2021)
  • She Said (Maria Schrader, 2022)
  • Something in the Dirt (Aaron Moorehead, Justin Benson, 2022)
  • Thirteen Lives (Ron Howard, 2022)
  • Till (Chinonye Chukwu, 2022)
  • Top Gun: Maverick (Joseph Kosinski, 2022)
  • Triangle of Sadness (Ruben Östlund, 2022)
  • Weird: The Al Yankovic Story (Eric Appel, 2022)
  • The Whale (Darren Aronofsky, 2022) 
  • White Noise (Noah Baumbach, 2022)
  • X (Ti West, 2022) 
  • Yalniz Olmayacaksin (You Won’t Be Alone, Goran Stolevski, 2022) 

The Eternal Daughter

Nolan Kelly

Nolan Kelly is a freelance film and art critic currently based in New York.

2022 was a year for rebels, or at least my cinematic viewing practices reflect my interest in them. The old ways aren’t working anymore, and any sense of satisfaction left with the status quo teeters precariously. The ten new films I loved most this year all deal, in one way or another, with the fate of being cast out, and in turn ask important questions about the nature and possibilities of the social contract. Some of them were, on top of this, made with an anarchic or contagiously subversive spirit, and reflect the fact that some of the best creative minds of our age are also fervid, seething sensibilities.

I – Films released for the first time in 2022

  1. Khers Nist (No Bears, Jafar Panahi, 2022)
  2. Un beau matin (One Fine Morning, Mia Hansen-Løve, 2022)
  3. L’Événement (Happening, Audrey Diwan, 2021)
  4. Bones and All (Luca Guadagnino, 2022)
  5. The Eternal Daughter (Joanna Hogg, 2022)
  6. Aftersun (Charlotte Wells, 2022)
  7. Tár (Todd Field, 2022)
  8. War Pony (Riley Keough & Gina Gammell, 2022)
  9. Große Freiheit (Great Freedom, Sebastian Meise, 2022)
  10. Stars at Noon (Claire Denis, 2022)

II – Older films encountered for the first time in 2022

  1. Paris, Texas (Wim Wenders, 1984) 
  2. Qīngshàonián Nuózhà (Rebels of the Neon God, Tsai Ming-liang, 1992)
  3. Goodbye, Dragon Inn (Tsai Ming-liang, 2003)
  4. Hale County This Morning, This Evening (RaMell Ross, 2018)
  5. Diaries, Notes and Sketches (aka Walden, Jonas Mekas, 1968)
  6. Le notti di Cabiria (Nights of Cabiria, Frederico Fellini, 1957)
  7. Daddy Longlegs (Josh & Benny Safdie, 2009)
  8. Donbass (Sergei Loznitsa, 2018)
  9. Little Dieter Needs to Fly (Werner Herzog, 1997)
  10. Inland Empire (David Lynch, 2006)

Simon Killen

Managing Director – Hi Gloss Entertainment<

New in cinemas
By the time the year came to a close, cinemas in Melbourne were buzzing again. That was a feeling I’d nearly given up hope on. I hope the upswing continues but am nervous as hell. The return to Cannes in person was a joy that never quite abated. The films were a bit below par from my view, but the experience has never been better. I don’t know we’ll see that volume of smiles in Cannes again. 

  • Westside Story (Steven Spielberg, 2021)
  • Writing With Fire (Rintu Thomas and Shushmit Ghosh, 2021)
  • Quiet Girl (Colm Bairead, 2022)
  • Joyland (Saim Sadiq, 2022)
  • EO (Jerzy Skolimowski, 2022)
  • Everything Everywhere All At Once (The Daniels, 2021)
  • Of An Age (Goran Stolevski, 2022)
  • Lost City of Melbourne (Gus Berger, 2022)
  • Mr Landisbergis (Serge Loznitza, 2021)
  • Khers Nist (No Bears, Jafar Panahi, 2022)
  • Compartment 6 (Juho Kuosmanen, (2021)
  • Nope (Jordan Peele, 2022)
  • The Stranger (Thomas M Wright, 2022)
  • Emily the Criminal (John Patton Ford, 2022)
  • Top Gun Maverick (Joseph Kosinski, 2022)
  • Aurora’s Sunrise (Inna Sahakian, 2022)
  • Blonde (Andrew Dominick, 2022)

Old and/or venerable – in cinemas mostly

Melbourne Cinematheque managed to programme on and off through COVID under stupidly difficult conditions, and are my cinema heroes of the year – by some distance. Nearly every week was essential viewing, and at ACMI, you’ve got as good a screen experience as you’ll get anywhere. Most of the films listed below screened there.

  • Saint Jack (Peter Bogdanovich, 1969)
  • Uccellari e Uccellini (The Hawks and the Sparrows, Pier Paolo Pasolini (1966)
  • High Tide/Starstruck (Gillian Armstrong, 1987/1982)
  • Where is the Friend’s House/The Wedding Suit/The Experience/First Graders/The Traveller (Abbas Kiarostami, 1987/1976/1973/1984/1974)
  • A Woman Crying In the Spring/Notes On an Itinerant Actress/The Masseurs and a Woman (Hirosh Shimuzu, 1933/1941/1938)
  • Jazz on a Summer’s Day (Aram Avakian/Bert Stern, 1959)
  • Plemya (The Tribe, Myroslav Slaboshpytskyi, 2014)
  • Chopper (Andrew Dominik, 2000)
  • Girlhood (Celine Sciamma, 2014)
    The opening sequence alone is one of the cinema highlights of the year. And the film never relents as Sciamma displays a view of sisterhood in the banlieues that takes your breath away and has you applauding the fearlessness of the characters.  Big, booming screen joy.
  • Hester Street (Joan Micklin Silver, 1975)
    Teenage sister mermaids rip the hearts out of innocent people in this Polish horror musical – how could that pitch possibly fail? It’s sexy, has great songs, choreography, some fine actors who remain gloriously undistracted by the mayhem that ensues around them. I’ve rarely had this much fun in a cinema. 
  • The Lure (Agnieska Smoczynska, 2015)
  • The Hop Pickers (Ladislaw Rychman, 1964)

Rainer Knepperges

Filmmaker, Cologne

My 31 discoveries in 2022 

  • Zigomar contre Nick Carter (Victorin-Hyppolite Jasset, 1912) 
  • Portret (The Portrait, Ladislas Starevich, 1915) 
  • Das Lied ist aus (The Song Is Ended, Géza von Bolváry, 1930) 
  • Possessed (Clarence Brown, 1931) 
  • Keine Feier ohne Meyer (No Celebration Without Meyer, Carl Boese, 1931)
  • Double Door (Charles Vidor, 1934)
  • Katharina die Letzte (Catherine the Last, Henry Koster, 1936)
  • The Lone Wolf Spy Hunt (Peter Godfrey, 1939)
  • Ladies in Retirement (Charles Vidor, 1941) 
  • The Strange Death of Adolf Hitler (James P. Hogan, 1943) 
  • Western Approaches (Pat Jackson, 1944)
  • Sciuscià (Shoeshine, Vittorio de Sica, 1946) 
  • Valahol Európában (Géza von Radvanyi, 1947) 
  • Give Us This Day (Edward Dmytryk, 1949)
  • The Capture (John Sturges, 1950)
  • Black Tuesday (Hugo Fregonese, 1954) 
  • Heller in Pink Tights (George Cukor, 1960) 
  • Whistle Down the Wind (Bryan Forbes, 1961)
  • Omicron (Ugo Gregoretti, 1963) 
  • Nude, calde e pure (Virgilio Sabel, Lambert Santhe, 1965) 
  • 13 Jours en France (13 Days in France, Claude Lelouch, 1968)
  • Le voyou (The Crook, Claude Lelouch, 1970)      
  • Reisender Krieger (Christian Schocher, 1981)       
  • Amore tossico (Toxic Love, Claudio Caligari, 1983)       
  • National Lampoon’s European Vacation (Amy Heckerling, 1985)
  • The Legendary Joe Meek (Alan Lewens, 1991)
  • Noises Off (Peter Bogdanovich, 1992)
  • The Maestro Rides Again (Les Blank, 2005) 
  • Booker’s Place (Raymond De Felitta, 2012)
  • Die Maler kommen (Painters at Work, Stefan Lampadius, 2016)
  • Schönis die im Fernsehn auftreten (Justus Hanfland, 2019)

Servus Papa See You in Hell 

My 2022 Top 11

  • Spiderman – No Way Home (Jon Watts, 2021) 
  • Nightmare Alley (Guillermo del Toro, 2022) 
  • The Card Counter (Paul Schrader, 2021) 
  • The Unbearable Weight of Massive Talent (Tom Gormican, 2022) 
  • France (Bruno Dumont, 2022) 
  • Champagner für die Augen (Klaus Lemke, 2022)
  • Blind Date (Jan Soldat, 2022)
  • Liebe, D-Mark und Tod (Love, Deutschmarks and Death, Cem Kaya, 2022)   
  • Schweigend steht der Wald (The Silent Forest, Saralisa Volm, 2022) 
  • Servus Papa See You in Hell (Cristopher Roth, 2022) 
  • Pinocchio (Guillermo Del Toro, 2022)

Ricardo Köhler

Cinephile, Rio de janeiro, Brasil

 Films released for the first time in 2022

  1. Pearl (Ti West, 2022)
  2. Triangle of Sadness (Ruben Östlund, 2022)
  3. Thirteen Lives (Ron Howard, 2022)
  4. Crimes of the Future (David Cronenberg, 2022)
  5. Men (Alex Garland, 2022)
  6. Bodies, Bodies, Bodies (Halina Reijn, 2022)
  7. Fresh (Mimi Cave, 2022)
  8. Tár (Todd Field, 2022)
  9. Nope (Jordan Peele, 2022)
  10. Armaggeddon Time (James Gray, 2022)

 Older films encountered for the first time in 2022

  1. Red Rocket (Sean Baker, 2021)
  2. 丹下左膳余話 百萬両の壺 (Sazen Tange and the Pot Worth a Million Ryo, Sadao Yamanaka, 1935)
  3. Nightmare Alley (Edmund Goulding, 1947)
  4. The Florida Project (Sean Baker, 2017)
  5. 太陽を盗んだ男 (The Man Who Stole the Sun, Kazuhiko Hasegawa, 1979)
  6. 仁義なき戦い (Battles Without Honor and Humanity, Kinji Fukasaku, 1973)
  7. The Power of the Dog (Jane Campion, 2021)
  8. Shiva Baby (Emma Seligman, 2020)
  9. De Uskyldige (The Innocents, Eskil Vogt, 2021)
  10. Vyi (Konstantin Ershov and Georgiy Kropachyov, 1967)

Benjamin Kooyman

Dr Ben Kooyman studied at Flinders University and has published extensively on Shakespeare, film, comics, and Australian cinema. He currently teaches at the Australian National University.

Films released for the first time in 2022 (festivals, cinemas, streaming services) 

As someone who doesn’t subscribe to Netflix and only goes to theatres sporadically, I tend to live a year or two behind the pop culture curve. That suits me fine, as I prefer watching films divorced from critical, promotional, and/or awards hype. Nonetheless, it means my list of 2022 films seen is very meagre, hence I’ve taken the liberty to present a best of 2021-2022 below.

  • Cyrano (Joe Wright, 2021) 
  • Pig (Michael Sarnoski, 2021)
  • Licorice Pizza (Paul Thomas Anderson, 2021)
  • Belfast (Kenneth Branagh, 2021) 
  • Dune (Denis Villeneuve, 2021)
  • Drive My Car (Ryûsuke Hamaguchi, 2021)
  • Kimi (Steven Soderbergh, 2022)
  • C’mon C’mon (Mike Mills, 2021) 
  • In the Heights (Jon M. Chu, 2021)
  • The Card Counter (Paul Schrader, 2021) 

Older films encountered for the first time in 2022 (seen in festivals, cinematheques, re-releases, home entertainment, streaming channels, etc) 

  • Manchester by the Sea (Kenneth Lonergan, 2016) 
  • Scenes from a Marriage (Ingmar Bergman, 1974)
  • City Lights (Charlie Chaplin, 1931) 
  • Sunrise: A Song of Two Humans (F.W. Murnau, 1927) 
  • Beauty and the Beast (Jean Cocteau, 1946)
  • Royal Flash (Richard Lester, 1975) 
  • The Well Digger’s Daughter (Daniel Auteuil, 2011) 
  • By the Sword (Jeremy Kagan, 1991) 
  • Bodied (Joseph Kahn, 2017)
  • The Piano Teacher (Michael Haneke, 2001) 

Maja Korbecka

Berlin-based film critic and film studies researcher


  • Retour à Séoul (Return to Seoul, Davy Chou, 2022)
  • Arnon pen nakrian tuayang (Arnold is a Model Student, Sorayos Prapapan, 2022)
  • Aftersun (Charlotte Wells, 2022)
  • 24 (Royston Tan, 2022)
  • Stonewalling (Huang Ji, Ryuji Otsuka, 2022)
  • Journey to the West (Kong Dashan, 2022)


  • The Obscure (Lü Yue, 2006)
  • They Say the Moon is Fuller Here (Clara Law, 1985)
  • Rita, Sue and Bob too (Alan Clarke, 1987)
  • Xiang ji mao yi yang fe (Chicken Poets, Meng Jinghui, 2002)


In 2022 I managed to attend for the first time some of the film festivals that I have always wanted to participate in. Due to researching film festivals for my PhD thesis, 2022 was the time of long-awaited postponed fieldwork. Each festival was a separate universe, a text waiting to be read, interpreted and engaged with. Regarding film texts that spoke to me in 2022, I realised that the new and the older titles listed above are dear to me because they resonated with my personal experience and current needs. Naive vitality and joy of life permeates Rita, Sue and Bob Too and Journey to the West, the issue of belonging and female agency in They Say the Moon is Fuller Here echoes in Return to Seoul, Stonewalling and Aftersun. I feel that the bold postmodern satire of Chicken Poets and the metacriticism of The Obscure are rare nowadays, but maybe I got such an impression because they are severely missing in contemporary Chinese-language cinema. Only 24 channels paradoxically old-fashioned postmodernism, which makes it very precious title in my end of the year list. I wish that in 2023 I will have a chance to see some more postmodern cinema, even though its playfulness and bittersweetness seem not to belong to the contemporary world that is burning.  

The Declaration

Sneha Krishnan

Sneha Krishnan is an Indian writer and humanitarian worker. She teaches during the day and survives on films by night.

This is where my nerdy list-keeping brain feels rewarded. How else am I supposed to remember all the films  I have seen? Yet to see? If its not  on my list, did I really watch it. Even if I  listed it what do I remember about the film? At the time of writing this list, on 30th December 2022, I had noted 207 films seen this year. And I have two day jobs, just saying. 

Films released in  2022

Kunchacko Boban, a Malayalam language actor from India serves a hattrick with three exquisite cinematic experiences

  • Pada (Kamal K.M., 2022)
  • Nna than case kodu (Sue me then!, Ratheesh Balakrishnan Poduval, 2022)
  • Ariyippu (The Declaration, Mahesh Narayan 2022) [Seen at International Film Festival, Kerala]

I have been blown away with the documentary films that released this year

  1. All that breathes (Shaunak Sen, 2022)
  2. Trans Kashmir (Surbhi Dewan and SA Hanan, 2022)
  3. Tori et Lokita, (Tori and Lokita, Jean-Pierre and Luc Dardenne, 2022) 
  4. Badhai Do (Congratulations, Harshavardhan Kulkarni, 2022)
  5. Nanpakal Nerathu Mayakkam (Like an afternoon dream Lijo Jose Pellissery, 2022) 
  6. Top Gun: Maverick (Joseph Kosinski, 2022)
  7. Ek jagah Apni (A place of our own, Ektara Collective, 2022)

Classics seen in 2022

This year I discovered the magic of classical Bengali films by Satyajit Ray and Mrinal Sen held as part of retrospective screenings at university and IFFK, 2022.

  • Kapurush o Mahapurush B/W (The Coward and the Holy Man, Satyajit Ray, 1965)
  • Charulata B/W (The Lonely Wife, Satyajit Ray, 1964)
  • Mahanagar B/W (The Big City, Satyajit Ray, 1977)
  • Nayak B/W (The Hero, Satyajit Ray, 1966)
  • Pather Panchali B/W (Song of the Little Road, Satyajit Ray, 1955)
  • Aparajito B/W (The Unvanquished, Satyajit Ray, 1956)
  • Jalsaghar B/W (The Music Room, Satyajit Ray, 1958)
  • Shatranj ke khiladi B/W (The Chess Players, Satyajit Ray, 1977)
  • Pratidwandi B/W restoration (The Adversary, Satyajit Ray, 1970)
  • Interview (Mrinal Sen, 1971)
  • Calcutta 71 (Mrinal Sen, 1972)
  • Padatik (The Guerilla Fighter, Mrinal Sen, 1973)

Other films seen in 2022

  •  Worst person in the world (Joachim Trier, 2021)
  •  Un divan à Tunis (Arab Blues, Manele Labidi Labbé, 2021)
  • The trouble with you (Pierre Salvadori, 2018)
  • Relatos salvajes (Wild Tales, Damián Szifron, 2014)
  • Tel Aviv Al Ha’Esh (Tel Aviv on Fire, Sameh Zoabi, 2018)
  • Playlist (Nine Antico, 2021)
  • And then we danced (Levan Akin, 2019)

As member associate of Film Society Bhubaneshwar in Odisha, I saw and interacted with many documentary filmmakers at Indian Documentary Film Festival, Bhubaneswar held from 14th – 16th October 2022. Some other notable mentions other than those listed above include

  • Gay India Matrimony (Debalina Majumdar, 2020)
  • Ghar Ka Pata (Home Address, Madhulika Jalali, 2021)
  • Karbala Memoirs (Sourav Sarangi, 2020)
  • Backstage (Lipika Singh Darai, 2021) 
  • A Night of Knowing Nothing (Payal Kapadia, 2021) 

Finally found my way to Trivandrum for the at International Film Festival from 9th – 17th December 2022, Kerala after a gap of two years. The curation of films here, and the ease with which one can view multiple films in a day here is unparalleled in India. 

  • Zanox: Risks and Side effects (Gábor Benö Baranyi, 2022)
  • Zwigato (Nandita Das, 2022)
  • Broker (Hirokazu Kore-eda, 2022)
  • Rheingold (Rhinegold, Fatih Akin, 2022)
  • Bratan (Brother Bakhtyar Khudojnazarov, 1991)
  • Walk up (Hong Sang-soo, 2022)
  • Perfect wave (Kryztoff Zanussi, 2022)
  • Decision to leave (Park Chan-wook, 2022)
  • No bears (Jafar Panahi, 2022)
  • The Whale (Darren Aronofsky, 2022)
  • Aftersun (Charlotte Wells, 2022)

Jay Kuehner

Film critic and curator based in the US Pacific Northwest
  • Adieu Jean-Luc et Jean-Marie
  • De humani corporis fabrica (Lucien Castaing-Taylor, Véréna Paravel, 2022)
  • Se-seol-ga-ui Yeong-hwa (The Novelist’s Film, Hong Sangsoo, 2022)
  • Le Pupille (Alice Rohrwacher, 2022)
  • Trenque Lauquen (Laura Citarella, 2022)
  • Gig la legge (The Adventures of Gigi the Law, Alessandro Comodin, 2022)
  • The United States of America (James Benning, 2022)
  • Snow in September (Lkhagvadulam Purev-Ochir, 2022)
  • Human Flowers of Flesh (Helena Wittmann, 2022)
  • A Woman Escapes (Sofia Bohdanowicz, Blake Williams, Burak Çevik, 2022)
  • urban solutions (Arne Hector, Luciana Mazeto, Minze Tummescheit, and Vinícius Lopes, 2022)
  • Al-Yad Al-Khadra (Foragers, Jumana Manna, 2022)
  • Ya Videl (I Saw, Vadim Kostrov, 2022)
  • Flora (Nicolás Pereda, 2022)
  • Unrueh (Unrest, Cyril Schäublin, 2022)
  • Mato Seco Em Chamas (Dry Ground Burning, Adirley Queirós, Joana Pimenta, 2022)
  • Pacifiction (Albert Serra, 2022)
  • Showing Up (Kelly Reichardt, 2022)
  • Eventide (Sharon Lockhart, 2022)
  • Saint Omer (Alice Diop, 2022)
  • Aftersun (Charlotte Wells, 2022)
  • Vera (Tizza Covi, Rainer Frimmel, 2002)
  • Eami (Paz Encina, 2022)
  • The Cathedral (Ricky d’Ambrose, 2022)
  • Onde fica essa rua? ou Sem Antes nem Depois (Where is this street? Or without before or after, João Pedro Rodrigues, João Rui Guerra da Mata, 2022)
  • Geographies of Solitude (Jacquelyn Mills, 2022)
  • É noite na América (It Is Night In America, Ana Vaz, 2022)
  • The Plains (David Easteal, 2022)
  • When There Is No More Music to Write, and Other Roman Stories (Eric Baudelaire, 2022)

Adam Kuntavanish

Film buff in the hinterlands of the midwest USA.

2022 World Premiere Favorites

  • Aftersun (Charlotte Wells, 2022)
  • Apollo 10½: A Space Age Childhood (Richard Linklater, 2022)
  • Armageddon Time (James Gray, 2022)
  • Bad Axe (David Siev, 2022)
  • Crimes of the Future (David Cronenberg, 2022)
  • Everything Everywhere All at Once (Daniel Kwan and Daniel Scheinert, 2022)
  • The Fabelmans (Steven Spielberg, 2022)
  • Heojil kyolshim (Decision to Leave, Park Chan-wook, 2022)
  • Nope (Jordan Peele, 2022)
  • So-seol-ga-ui yeong-hwa (The Novelist’s Film, Hong Sang-soo, 2022)
  • Tár (Todd Field, 2022)

Honorable Mentions

  • Avec amour et acharnement (Both Sides of the Blade, Claire Denis, 2022)
  • The Banshees of Inisherin (Martin McDonagh, 2022)
  • Closed Circuit (Tal Inbar, 2022)
  • Confess, Fletch (Greg Mottola, 2022)
  • Descendant (Margaret Brown, 2022)
  • The Eternal Daughter (Joanna Hogg, 2022)
  • Free Chol Soo Lee (Julie Ha and Eugene Yi, 2022)
  • Glass Onion (Rian Johnson, 2022)
  • Moonage Daydream (Brett Morgen, 2022)
  • Prey (Dan Trachtenberg, 2022)
  • RRR (S.S. Rajamouli, 2022)
  • Stars at Noon (Claire Denis, 2022)
  • Triangle of Sadness (Ruben Östlund, 2022)
  • Turning Red (Domee Shi, 2022)
  • The first half of Barbarian (Zach Cregger, 2022) and the middle of Avatar: The Way of Water (James Cameron, 2022)

A Few 2022 US Premiere Favorites

  • Benediction (Terence Davies, 2021)
  • The Cathedral (Ricky D’Ambrose, 2021)
  • L’Événement (Happening, Audrey Diwan, 2021)
  • Friends and Strangers (James Vaughan, 2021)
  • Fanny: The Right to Rock (Bobbi Jo Hart, 2021)
  • Große Freiheit (Great Freedom, Sebastian Meise, 2021)
  • Marx può aspettare (Marx Can Wait, Marco Bellocchio, 2021)
  • Tromperie (Deception, Arnaud Desplechin, 2021)

New to Me Favorites (Pre-2022)

  • Drums Along the Mohawk (John Ford, 1939)
  • Gentleman Jim (Raoul Walsh, 1942)
  • A Star is Born (George Cukor, 1954)
  • Blast of Silence (Allen Baron, 1961)
  • La permission (The Story of a Three-Day Pass, Melvin Van Peebles, 1967)
  • Dersu Uzala (Akira Kurosawa, 1975)
  • Fanny och Alexander [TV version] (Ingmar Bergman, 1983)
  • The Terence Davies Trilogy (Terence Davies, 1983)
  • Zhi fa xian feng (Righting Wrongs, Corey Yuen, 1986)
  • The Last Temptation of Christ (Martin Scorsese, 1988)
  • Songs for Drella (Edward Lachman, 1990)
  • West Beyrouth (À l’abri les enfants) (West Beirut, Ziad Doueiri, 1998)
  • Kūki Ningyō (Air Doll, Hirokazu Kore-eda, 2009)
  • Happī Awā (Happy Hour, Ryūsuke Hamaguchi, 2015)


Otto Kylmälä

Otto Kylmälä is a filmmaker, critic and the programmer of the Finnish national film archive’s cinematheque.

Here’s my submission for the world poll. 

Films released for the first time in 2022 (festivals, cinemas, streaming services) 

  • Axiom (Jöns Jönsson, 2022) 
  • The Banshees of Inisherin (Martin McDonagh, 2022)
  • Cenzorka (107 Mothers, Peter Kerekes, 2021)
  • Holy Spider (Ali Abbasi, 2022) 
  • JFK Revisited: Through the Looking Glass (Oliver Stone, 2021) 
  • President (Camilla Nielsson, 2021)
  • Rimini (Ulrich Seidl, 2022) 
  • Tengo sueños eléctricos (I Have Electric Dreams, Valentina Maurel, 2022) 
  • The Velvet Underground (Todd Haynes, 2021)
  • Verdens verste menneske (The Worst Person in the World, Joachim Trier, 2021)

Older films encountered for the first time in 2022 (seen in festivals, cinematheques, re-releases, home entertainment, streaming channels, etc)

  • Dans la Nuit (Into the Night, Charles Vanel, 1929)
  • Die Koffer des Herrn O.F. (The Thirteen Trunks of Mr. O.F., Alexis Granowsky, 1931)
  • Circus (Grigori Aleksandrov, Isidor Simkov, 1936)
  • Caught (Max Ophüls, 1949)
  • The Sniper (Edward Dmytryk, 1952)
  • Look Back in Anger (Tony Richardson, 1959)
  • Susuz Yaz (Dry Summer, Metin Erksan, 1963)
  • Subarnarekha (The Golden Thread, Ritwik Ghatak, 1965) 
  • Targets (Peter Bogdanovich, 1968) 
  • Long cheng shi ri (A City Called Dragon, Tu Chung-Hsun, 1970) 
  • Sambizanga (Sarah Maldoror, 1972)  
  • Pasqualino Settebellezze (Seven Beauties, Lina Wertmüller, 1975) 
  • Shatranj-e Baad (Chess of the Wind, Mohammad Reza Aslani, 1976)
  • Dona Flor e Seus Dois Maridos (Dona Flor and Her Two Husbands, Bruno Barreto, 1976)
  • Une histoire de vent (A Tale of the Wind, Joris Ivens, Marceline Loridan-Ivens, 1988)
  • Elephant (Alan Clarke, 1989) 
  • The Firm (Alan Clarke, 1989) 
  • Az én XX. századom (My Twentieth Century, Ildikó Enyedi, 1989)
  • Il ladro di bambini (The Stolen Children, Gianni Amelio, 1992) 
  • Garage (Lenny Abrahamson, 2007) 


Best short films old & new – chronological

  • Hoch der Lambeth Valk (Charles Ridley,  1941)
  • …A Valparaíso (Valparaiso, Joris Ivens, 1963)
  • Farbtest – Die rote Fahne (Color Test: The Red Flag, Gerd Conradt, 1968)
  • Vremena goda (Seasons of the Year, Artavazd Peleshian, 1975) 
  • Le Saboteur (The Saboteur, Anssi Kasitonni, 2022)
  • Kuinka käänsin rabobeston kylkiasentoon (Rabobesto – Or How I Saved a Monster, Mari Mantela, 2022) 

“One Finnish film per week project” – Best of 52 Finnish films watched in 2022 (Chronological) 

  • Ihmiset suviyössä (People of the Summer Night, Valentin Vaala, 1948)
  • Evakko (Evacuee, Ville Salminen, 1956)
  • Sissit (The Partisans, Mikko Niskanen, 1963)
  • Rantojen miehet (The Shadow of a City, Hannu Peltomaa, 1971)
  • Kahdeksan surmanluotia (Eight Deadly Shots, Mikko Niskanen, 1972)
  • Tulipää (Flame Top, Pekka Lehto, Pirjo Honkasalo, 1980)
  • Karaokeparatiisi (Karaoke Paradise, Einari Paakkanen, 2022)

Rabobesto – Or How I Saved a Monster

Eugenia Lai

Cinephile. New York

New Releases (festivals, cinemas, streaming services) 

  • Children’s Games (Francis Alys, 1999-ongoing)
  • Licorice Pizza (Paul Thomas Anderson, 2021)
  • Mutzenbacher (Ruth Beckermann, 2022)
  • The United States of America (James Benning, 2022)
  • Hiaitsiihi (Julien Bismuth, 2021)
  • Somos Apenas Corpos (We are Barely Bodies, Julien Bismuth 2021)
  • Gigi la legge (The adventures of Gigi the law, Alessandro Comodin, 2022)
  • Langue des Oiseaux (Language of Birds, Erik Bullot, 2022)
  • De Humani Corporis Fabrica ( Lucien Castaing-Taylor and Véréna Paravel, 2022)
  • Blue Island (Tze Woon Chan, 2022)
  • The Unstable Object II (Daniel Eisenberg, 2022)
  • Cahiers Noirs (Black Notebooks, Shlomi Elkabetz, 2021)
  • Les Années Super-8 (The Super-8 Years, Annie Ernaux/David Ernaux-Briot, 2022)
  • Lago Gatun (Kevin Jerome Everson, 2021)
  • Where are we Headed? (Ruslan Fedotov, 2021)
  • A Felicidade das Coisas (The Joy of Things, Thais Fujinaga, 2021)
  • Quarries (Ellie Ga, 2022)
  • Jiao má táng huì (A New Old Play, Qiu Jiongjiong, 2021)
  • A Night of Knowing Nothing (Payal Kapadia, 2021)
  • Everything Everywhere All at Once (Dan Kwan/Dan Scheinert, 2022)
  • Expedition Contents (Ernst Karel/Veronika Kusumaryati, 2020)
  • Devil’s Peak (Simon Liu, 2021)
  • Don’t Look Up (Adam McKay, 2021)
  • Întregalde (Radu Muntean, 2021)
  • Venice Beach, CA (Marion Naccache, 2021)
  • Triangle of Sadness, (Ruben Östlund, 2022)
  • Nest (Hlynur Pálmason, 2022)
  • Nope (Jordan Peele, 2022)
  • Mato Seco em Chamas (Dry Ground Running, Joana Pimenta/Adirley Queiros, 2022)
  • Malintzin 17 (Mara and Eugenio Polgovsky, 2022)
  • Unrueh (Unrest, Cyril Schäublin, 2022)
  • Pacifiction (Albert Serra, 2022)
  • Medusa (Anita Rocha de Silveria, 2021)
  • The Night (Tsai Ming-Liang, 2021)
  • É Noite na América (It is Night in America, Ana Vaz, 2022)


Repertoire (encountered the first time in 2022)

  • Husan al-Ti (Horse of Mud, Atteyat Al-Abnoudy, 1971)
  • Al-Sandawich (The Sandwich, Atteyat Al-Abnoudy, 1975)
  • Bihar al-’Attash (Seas of Thirst, Atteyat Al-Abnoudy, 1980)
  • Al-Ahlam al-Mumkinna (Permissible Dreams, Atteyat Al-Abnoudy, 1983)
  • Am I the Ageless Object at the Museum? (Noor Abuarafeh, 2018)
  • Partner (Bernardo Bertolucci, 1968)
  • Beyroutou el lika (Beirut the Encounter, Borhane Alaouié, 1981)
  • Garrincha-Alegria do Povo(Garrincha-Hero of the Jungle, Joaquim Pedro de Andrade
  • 1963
  • Grandeur nature (Lifesize, Luis Garcia Berlanga, 1974)
  • Hitler, connais pas (Bertrand Blier, 1963) 
  • Het debut (The Debut, Nouchka van Brakel, 1977)
  • Een vrouw als Eva (A Woman Like Eve, Nouchka van Brakel,1979)
  • Xilu Xiang (Little Cheung, Fruit Chan, 1999)
  • Liu lian piao piao (Durian Durian, Fruit Chan, 2000)
  • Year of the Dragon (Michael Cimino, 1985)
  • Monsieur Riprois (Knaves of Hearts, René Clément, 1954)
  • Rafles sur la Ville (Sinners of Paris, Pierre Chenal, 1958)
  • Bai Yi (White Ant, Hsien-Jer Chu, 2016)
  • Butterfly (David Cronenberg, 1993)
  • Margem (Margin, Maya Da-Rin, 2007)
  • Babi Buta yang Ingin Terbang (Blind Pig who Wants to Fly, Edwin, 2008)
  • Bof….Anatomie d’un livreur (Who Cares:Anatomy of a Delivery Boy, Claude Faraldo, 1971)
  • The Big Clock (John Farrow,1948)
  • Pick Up on South Street (Samuel Fuller, 1953)
  • De Cierta Manera (One Way or Another, Sara Gomez, 1977)
  • O.K (Walter Heynowski, 1965)
  • Les Bicots-Nègres, Vos Voisins (Med Hondo, 1974)
  • Track (Henry Jaglom, 1976)
  • Cea mai fericita fata din lume (The Happiest Girl in the World, Radu Jude, 2009)
  • Scandal Street (Phil Karlson, 1952)
  • Beolsae (House of Hummingbird, Bora Kim, 2018)
  • Motforestilling (Remonstrance, Erik Lochen, 1972)
  • Somewhere in the Night (Joseph L. Mankiewicz, 1946)
  • Dr. Chicago (George Manupelli, 1968)
  • Cry Dr. Chicago (George Manupelli, 1971)
  • Kanzenna yûgi (The Perfect Game, Toshio Masuda, 1958)
  • Szabad lélegzet (Riddance, Márta Mészáros, 1973)
  • Örökbefogadás (Adoption, Márta Mészáros,1975)
  • After Winter Comes Spring (Winter Adé, Helga Misselwitz, 1989) 
  • Wer fürchtet sich vorm schwarzen Mann (Who’s afraid of the Bogeyman, Helga Misselwitz, 1987)
  • Kazoku gêmu (The Family Game, Yoshimitsu Morita, 1983)
  • Tokimeki ni shisu (Deaths in Tokimeki, Yoshimitsu Morita,1984)
  • No yohna mono (Something Like It, Yoshimitsu Morita, 1981)
  • The French (William Klein, 1982)
  • Kahdeksan surmanluotia (Eight Deadly Shots, Mikko Niskanen, 1972)
  • Pura Sangre (Luis Ospina, 1982)
  • La desazón suprema: Retrato de Fernando Vallejo (The Supreme Uneasiness: Incessant Portrait of Fernando Vallejo, Luis Ospina, 2003)
  • Autorretrato póstumo de Lorenzo Jaramillo (Posthumous Self-Portrait of Lorenzo Jaramillo, Luis Ospina, 1993)
  • Alaye Sorkh, (Crimson Gold, Jafar Panahi, 2003)
  • Get Out (Jordan Peele, 2017)
  • Radio On (Christopher Petit, 1979)
  • Redenção (Redemption, Roberto Pires, 1959)
  • Chinatown (Roman Polanski, 1974)
  • Patio (Glauber Rocha, 1959)
  • Paparazzi (Jacque Rozier, 1964)
  • La Punition (The Punishment, Jean Rouch, 1962)
  • Malina (Werner Schroeter, 1991)
  • The Big Steal (Don Siegel, 1949)
  • The Girl Chewing Gum (John Smith, 1976)
  • OM (John Smith, 1986)
  • Private Property (Leslie Stevens, 1960)
  • Koibumi (Love Letter, Kinuyo Tanaka, 1953)
  • Tsuki wa noborinu (The Moon has Risen, Kinuyo Tanaka,1955)
  • Dung fong sam hap (The Herioc Trio, Johnny To, 1993)
  • Executioners (Johnny To, 1993) 
  • Lat sau san taam (Hard Boiled, Johnny To, 1992)
  • Dip huet seung hung (The Killer, Johnny To, 1989)
  • Afrique 50 (René Vautier, 1950)
  • Les Compères (The ComDads, Francis Veber, 1983)
  • Mélodie en sous-sol (Any Number Can Win, Henri Verneuil,1963)
  • Life Is Cheap… But Toilet Paper Is Expensive (Wayne Wang, 1989)
  • De Noorderlingen (The Northerners, Alex van Warmderdam, 1992)
  • Juo Ren Mi Mi (Nina Wu, Midi Z, 2019)

Marc Lauria

Cinephile. Brisbane, Australia

My 2022 Ten Best

  1. Potemkinistii (Potemkinists, Radu Jude, 2022)
  2. Pacifiction (Albert Serra, 2022)
  3. EO (Jerzy Skolimowski, 2022)
  4. Khers Nist (No Bears, Jafar Panahi, 2022)
  5. Crimes of the Future (David Cronenberg, 2022)
  6. Unrueh (Unrest, Cyril Schaublin, 2022)
  7. El Gran Movimiento (The Great Movement, Kiro Russo, 2021)
  8. Babi Yar. Context (Sergei Loznitsa, 2021)
  9. A vendredi, Robinson (See You Friday, Robinson, Mitra Farahani, 2022)
  10. All the Beauty and the Bloodshed (Laura Poitras, 2022)

All the Beauty and the Bloodshed

Elaine Lennon

Film historian and novelist.

Top Ten

  1. Elvis (Baz Luhrmann, 2022) Marco Bellocchio, 2019). The old razzle dazzle
  2. Everything Everywhere All At Once (Daniel Kwan and Daniel Scheinert, 2022). Omnimagick.
  3. Top Gun: Maverick (Joseph Kosinski, 2022) Even better than the real thing.
  4. Don’t Worry Darling (Olivia Wilde, 2022). Constantly unsettling.
  5. Ennio: The Maestro (Giuseppe Tornatore, 2021). Immaculate musicology.
  6. An Cailin Ciuin (The Quiet Girl, Colm Bairead, 2022) Perfect control
  7. The Northman (Robert Eggers, 2022) Epic acting out
  8. Licorice Pizza (Paul Thomas Anderson, 2021) Hollywood eats itself
  9. Parallel Mothers (Pedro Almodovar, 2021) Insinuating history
  10. Avatar: The Way of Water (James Cameron, 2022) Out of this world

Special Mention:

The Last Movie Stars (Ethan Hawke, 2022). Mesmerising and moving documentary mini-series of Paul Newman and Joanne Woodward is a

cineaste’s wet dream.

Valtteri Lepistö

Writer for Vita Nuova collective (Tampere, Finland)

Best films of the year (based on Finnish releases & international festival releases)

  • Benediction (Terence Davies, 2021)
  • Doraibu mai kâ (Drive My Car, Hamaguchi Ryusuke, 2021)
  • L’événement (Happening, Audrey Diwan, 2021)
  • Liturgy of Anti-Tank Obstacles (Dmytro Sukholytkyi-Sobchuk, 2022)
  • Mato seco em chamas (Dry Ground Burning, Adirley Queirós & Joana Pimenta, 2022)
  • Natchathiram Nagargiradhu (Pa. Ranjith, 2022)
  • O Trio em Mi Bemol (The Kegelstatt Trio, Rita Azevedo Gomes, 2022)
  • Serre moi fort (Hold Me Tight, Mathieu Amalric, 2021)
  • Skazka (Fairytale, Aleksandr Sokurov, 2022)
  • Svidanie v Minske (A Date in Minsk, Nikita Lavretski, 2022)


Best discoveries

  • Yajû shisubeshi (The Beast Shall Die, Sugawa Eizo, 1959)
  • Los hermanos Del Hierro (My Son, the Hero, Ismael Rodríguez, 1961)
  • Privarzaniyat balon (The Tied Up Balloon, Binka Zhelyazkova, 1967)
  • Sovist (Conscience, Vladimir Denisenko, 1968)
  • A Casa Assassinada (The Murdered House, Paulo César Saraceni, 1971)
  • Beyrouth, jamais plus / Lettre de Beyrouth / Beyrouth, ma ville (Jocelyne Saab, 1976–1983)
  • Chidambaram (Govindan Aravindan, 1985)
  • Flucht in den Norden (Flight North, Ingemo Engström, 1986)
  • Boodan yaa naboodan (To Be or Not to Be, Kianoush Ayari, 1998)
  • Gao hai ba zhi lian II (Romancing in Thin Air, Johnnie To, 2012)

Needless to say, as a Finnish person my mind was most of the year in Eastern Europe which can be seen in the films that I’ve chosen to be the best (or the most representative) of this year: the triangle drama between Ukraine, Belarus and Russia is reflected in the works of Sukholytkyi-Sobchuk, Lavretski, and Sokurov who are all trying to make sense of the situation while innovating with cinematic form. The first two are more grounded in the current realities whereas Sokurov is struggling with the problem of tyranny by crossing temporal, local, and even worldly settings. Political urgency can be also felt in the works of Ranjith and Diwan as well as Queirós & Pimenta who have probably created the most important film of the year. As ridiculous as it feels to group these diverse filmmakers together, the veterans Azevedo Gomes, Hamaguchi, Davies, and Amalric also created masterpieces that dazzle with their passion, formal control, and cinematic invention.

Ukraine and Brazil played the most essential role in the cinematic discoveries I made this year as once-banned Conscience and César Saraceni’s masterpiece The Murdered House are very likely the best films I saw all year. As far as re-watches go, returning to the work of Oleksandr Dovzhenko revolutionized my idea of cinema history, and perhaps cinema as an art form hasn’t still caught up with his work. Another highlight was Jocelyne Saab’s seminal Beirut (civil war) trilogy which I saw at the start of the year and wrote about for Filmihullu magazine just a couple of weeks before Russia attacked Ukraine. The sight of destruction felt terrifyingly identical although this is not the first time horrors of war have been unleashed since the Lebanese civil war. More importantly, Saab didn’t wallow in self-pity and showed the resilience of her people instead of repeating spectacle-like images that western media fed (and keeps feeding) world audiences. Because of that, we’ll remember the strength of the Lebanese people trapped in civil war. Such reminders are always necessary in times of crisis.

Wyeth Leslie

Local Movie Appreciator, Writer and Poet


Note: Living in the middle of North America means being last to see movies, even Oscar contenders. These are all movies that arrived in Oklahoma via theaters or streaming on or after January 1st, 2022.

  1. Everything Everywhere all at Once (Daniels, 2022) – A Mardi Gras parade sense of maximalism done in the service of every day empathy.
  2. Doraibu Mai Kā (Drive My Car, Ryusuke Hamaguchi, 2021) – Good car, beautiful car. An immaculate sensation of being a ghost in the lives of others.
  3.  Jadde Khaki (Hit the Road, Panah Panahi, 2021) – Both formal and dream-like, a family road trip with an edge of anxiety western audiences will never personally know.
  4. We’re All Going to the World’s Fair (Jane Schoenbrun, 2021) – Calls back to the wild west early days of the internet where clicking a link could be like stepping off a pier into bottomless depths.
  5. Crimes of the Future (David Cronenberg, 2022) – The father of body horror returns home to fertile soil and finds a measure of hope blooming.
  6. Mad God (Phil Tippett, 2021) – A triumph 30 years in the making, this nightmarish fever dream of the future somehow manages to retain a humanist spirit, reminding us that it doesn’t have to be like this.
  7. Red Rocket (Sean Baker, 2021) – Follows a washed-up porn actor and con man who doesn’t realize that the story he’s in is a long con to carve him up as his own failed conquest. A crude joke that bruises after the laughs.
  8. Flugt (Flee, Jonas Poher Rasmussen, 2021) – My earliest chance to watch this unfortunately came when it arrived on streaming with ads. Perhaps the film’s most devastating moment, the cruise ship encounter, was interrupted by a fast-food chain announcing that they’ve made an even bigger hamburger. A dizzying unintended moment of cultural whiplash and blackened irony.

New to me

  1. Trudno byt’ bogom (Hard to Be a God, Aleksei German, 2013) – The most texturally realized portrayal of filth possibly ever put to film. Not since Stalker has an environment felt this transcendent from the screen.
  2. All that Jazz (Bob Fosse, 1979) – Like being hooked up to a city’s power grid, Fosse’s semi-biographical film overloads the senses. Egotistical, insightful, self-critical, vulnerable, even spiritual. I don’t think I’ll ever stop thinking about the ascendent climax.
  3. Mon Oncle (Jacques Tati, 1958) – In a year filled with a seemingly ever increasingly bleak state of the world, movies were a great comfort. Few more so than Tati’s good-natured sense of hijinks and shenanigans.
  4. The Long Goodbye (Robert Altman, 1973) – Philip Marlowe has always been a weary character, it just took Elliott Gould to fully realize those depths.
  5. Eat Drink Man Woman (Ang Lee, 1994) – Food as a veil for hidden wounds.
  6. Babettes Gæstebud (Babette’s Feast, Gabriel Axel, 1987) – Food as a healing for hidden wounds.
  7. Kairo (Pulse, Kiyoshi Kurosawa, 2001) – A festering black mold sense of loneliness. All our keystrokes and all our websites can’t put us back together again.
  8. Bacurau (Kleber Mendonça Filho, Juliano Dornelles, 2019) A righteous sense of post-colonial anger that would make early John Carpenter proud.
  9. Dokhtari dar šab tanhâ be xâne miravad (A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night, Ana Lily Amirpour, 2014) – A dead end town, parents who don’t understand, desperate lovers, a car that promises the horizon. The best vampiric Springsteen album never recorded.
  10. I have always felt that horror makes for the best communal viewing and this belief was reinforced by my experience with “Dismember the Alamo” at the Austin Alamo Drafthouse. A sold-out horror movie marathon for Halloween, it was a joy to sit among so many people all hooting and hollering as various malevolent forces picked teens off one by one. After so much isolation during these past few years, it was cathartic being able to laugh together over so much fake blood.

Sandra E. Lim

Contributor to Senses of Cinema, lecturer and artist, film and video maker.

In writing about a year of films (with a subtext about artificial intelligence (AI)), a friend who I am entirely thankful to, suggested that it would be cool or meta, to use an open chat artificial intelligence software program, to research into the topic of AI for my film reviews.  The one used for the research of this review is called ChatGPT, first released in November 2022, and made by OpenAI. More than a search engine, ChatGPT is like a knowledgeable friend on hand with the primary interaction being driven by asking it questions. In response, ChatGPT offers short conversational responses driven by a huge database, and in my case, responses to some of the more philosophical problems posed by the core body of films I chose for this review.  As a result, the films that I found to be most interesting are collated around the questions these films inherently raise about the relationship between humans and machines, and the capacity of AI to evolve feelings, emotions and an awareness of its own consciousness and existence.  

Six films/streaming series seen for the first time in 2022

Her (Spike Jonze, 2014) is an older film seen for the first time this year, which set the ball rolling on the topic of human and machine/technology relationships in films seen this past year. Set in a near future, Theodor Twombly (Joaquin Phoenix) is a sensitive but introverted man who lives a rather lonely life, having recently separated from his wife. He has the remarkable job of writing letters with a human touch, for people in need of heart felt correspondence with loved ones, but who are unable to put words to their feelings.  There is some irony here, in that Theodore’s wife has left him for being unable to open himself up in their relationship.  Samantha (Scarlett Johansson) soon comes into his life as the operating system installed on his computer, with the pretext that she has intuition and evolves through experiences.  As Theodor longs for real connection, Samantha begins to fill the void in his heart, with her human like feelings and emotional support, as well as her curiosity about the world around her, which she soon painfully comes to realize, she can never fully embody in Theodor’s life.  Her may be wildly out there, but has something to offer, in terms of how we may value virtual relationships with those we may never meet. 

I’m your Man (Maria Schrader, 2021), screened at TIFF in 2022, and was first viewed through streaming thereafter.  The film offers a counter to Her’s exploration of the potential of AI to successfully convey human like emotion and feelings.  Alma (Maren Eggert) is a cynical PhD researcher who is offered much needed research funding, in exchange for test driving a human like robot companion Tom (Dan Stevens).  At the end of three weeks, she must review the experience. Her life is overly complicated by working with an ex (Hans Löw), who has a new partner (Karolin Peiter) and a baby on the way, as well as a father whose health is on the decline; all of which leads Alma into to a quiet life of desperation and envy. While Tom does not have the capacity to feel emotion or question his own existence, he uncannily seems to know what Alma needs in an everyday sense.  She therefore eventually grows to like him, as he seems to caringly anticipate her needs.  However, Tom eventually has a destabilizing effect on Alma, as she can’t reconcile with the “uncanny valley” effect or the discomfort that some people feel when interacting with AI that is almost, but not quite, human-like (concept explained to me in a session with ChatGPT).  As Alma goes back and forth between Tom’s value in her life and questions his realness, she eventually decides to return him with a negative review, stating the main drawback of AI companions like Tom, is the danger that people will no longer put in the more difficult work of forming real relationships in real life, and in some ways that lack will negatively impact humanity.

After Yang (Kogonada, 2021), also screened at TIFF 2022, and was viewed through streaming thereafter.  Set in the future, the harmony of Jake’s (Colin Farrell) family, which includes a Techno sapien named Yang (Justin H. Min), is thrown off balance when Yang, who was purchased as a companion sibling for his young daughter Mika (Malea Emma Tjandrawidjaja), malfunctions and collapses.  Jake and Mika embark on a mission to have Yang – who Mika considers to be her older brother – repaired.  Jake comes to view Yang as his son, while his wife Kyra (Jodie Turner-Smith), seems more distant.  Ultimately, they must all come to terms with the painful realization that Yang can’t be repaired. Turning to a black-market repair operation, Jake finds out that Yang is embedded with spy software for marketing purposes. The device also has a side program, that allows Yang to save a few precious minutes of his experiences each day, thus offering Jake a window into what are in effect, his son’s memories. Yang’s memories include fleeting moments in which we catch a glimpse of a clone lover, and Yang standing in front of a mirror smiling enigmatically back at himself, as if projecting an awareness of his own existence. 

Crimes of the Future (David Cronenberg, 2022), while low tech, Cronenberg relays a theme about transhumanism in a future where the body has been bio designed to exceed its limits of feeling pain. 

West World Season 4 (Jonathan Nolan, Lisa Joy Et al., 2022). The series as a whole, raises ethical implications of creating AI that can experience suffering and pain for purposes of pleasure and entertainment.

Raised by Wolves Season 2 (Aaron Guzkowski, Ridley Scott Et al., 2022), addresses a number of AI issues/themes including the relationship between humans and machines in the future, as servants and keepers.

Thomas Logoreci

Tirana, Albania-based filmmaker, writer, film festival selector

Most memorable movie-related experience of 2022: Visiting the Academy Museum of Motion Pictures in Los Angeles and viewing so many items that I could never imagine I would see in one place: one of the sleds created for Citizen Kane, the ruby slippers used in The Wizard of Oz, Bogart’s suit from The Big Sleep, a Lumiere camera, Charles Rosher’s Oscar for Sunrise. But what really impressed me was the Academy theater giving some programming space for experimental and avant-garde selections. I was fortunate to be at one of these screenings, a sparkling print of Harun Farocki’s Images of the World and the Inscription of War introduced and curated by film preservationist Mark Toscano. If I still lived in Los Angeles this is where I would be.

Favorite Films of 2022

  • All the Beauty and the Bloodshed (Laura Poitras, 2022)
  • Bones and All (Luca Guadagnino, 2022)
  • H (Carlos Pardo Ros, 2022)
  • Heojil kyolshim (Decision to Leave, Park Chan-wook, 2022)
  • L’evenement (Happening, Audrey Diwan, 2022)
  • Matter Out of Place (Nikolas Geyrhalter, 2022)
  • Moonage Daydream (Brett Morgan, 2022)
  • Nope (Jordan Peele, 2022)
  • Rewind and Play (Alain Gomis, 2022)
  • Tár (Todd Field, 2022)

Favorite First Time Viewings of 2022

  • Casque D’Or (Jacques Becker, 1953)
  • Cerny Petr (Black Peter, Milos Forman, 1964)
  • Im Spiegel der Maya Deren (In the Mirror of Maya Deren, Martina Kudlacek, 2000)
  • Kad budem mrtav i beo (When I’m Dead and Gone, Zivojin Pavlovic, 1967)
  • Koiya koi nasuna koi (Love, Thy Name Be Sorrow, Tomo Uchida, 1962)
  • 7th Heaven (Frank Borzage, 1927)
  • The Faithful (Annie Berman, 2021)
  • The Image You Missed (Donal Foreman, 2008)
  • The Night Has a Thousand Eyes (John Farrow, 1948)
  • Trzecia czesc nocy (The Third Part of the Night, Andrzej Zulawski, 1971) 

Tara Lomax

Screen Studies Author and Scholar / Multiplatform Development Consultant / Editor at Pop Junctions

It was an interesting year for blockbuster cinema in 2022: Hollywood worked to recover after years of pandemic-driven instability and unpredictability that disrupted production and distribution scheduling; cinema exhibition continued to work in tension with streaming and other home exhibition platforms; Tom Cruise proved to the world that a ‘Top Gun’ sequel was both need) a after all; James Cameron finally revealed the ‘Avatar’ installment he has been working on for over a decade; and blockbuster franchising remained the dominant mode of Hollywood production.

As per my previous contributions to the Senses of Cinema World Poll, here I list noteworthy franchise installments released throughout the year to document the franchise mode. In 2022, blockbuster franchises were at times self-aware, often unrefined, and increasingly multiversal. Overall, franchise installments released in 2022 signaled that blockbuster franchising is not easy to do well. 

This year my poll is listed in alphabetical order.

  • Avatar: The Way of Water (James Cameron, 2022)
  • The Batman (Matt Reeves, 2022)
  • Black Panther: Wakanda Forever (Ryan Coogler, 2022)
  • Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness (Sam Raimi, 2022)
  • Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore (David Yates, 2022)
  • Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery (Rian Johnson, 2022)
  • Jurassic Park Dominion (Colin Trevorrow, 2022)
  • Scream (Matt Bettinelli-Olpin and Tyler Gillett, 2022)
  • Thor: Love and Thunder (Taika Waititi, 2022)
  • Top Gun: Maverick (Joseph Kosinski, 2022)

Unnoteworthy mentions: Morbius (Daniel Espinosa, 2022) and Black Adam (Juame Collet-Serra, 2022) – listed here only for documentation purposes.

About The Author

Related Posts