These are the best movies that were not necessarily made in 2008, but that I watched for the first time in 2008.
Kill Bill, v.1,2. (2003, 2004) For much of the year, I was, shall we say, in the mood for Quentin Tarantino's epic tale of revenge. Tarantino is such a great film maker because he feels no obligations to comply with the conventions of modern cinema. He executes his vision exactly as he envisions it in exacting detail. True art begins when you don't care what other people think. Another fantastic Tarantino film: Death Proof.
Sin City. (2005) A translation of Frank Miller's saga of the very depths and the very heights of human morality and experience. Sin City shows humanity at is very best and very worst -- and everything in between. Rewatching it recently, I was struck by this line by the corrupt Senator Roarke, which reminded me of my District Superintendent: "Power don't come from a badge or a gun. Power comes from lying. Lying big and gettin' the whole damn world to play along with you. Once you've got everybody agreeing with what they know in their hearts ain't true, you've got 'em by the balls. Everyone would lie for me. Everyone who counts. Otherwise, their own lies — everything that runs Sin City — it all comes tumbling down like a pack of cards." The DCOM didn't just end my candidacy. Four members in particular were actually enraged by my truth-telling. Senator Roarke's explanation is precisely why.
Annie Hall. (1977) I love Woody Allen, and finally got around to seeing what is thought to be his best film. I'm not convinced that it's better than Sleeper, but it's very good. Like Tarantino, Allen's work is punctuated by long conversations between characters about ordinary topics that are somehow profoundly interesting. Annie Hall is the tale of a minor comedian who forms a great relationship with a girlfriend, and then wrecks it because the relationship is not absolutely perfect. Besides, the entire movie was worth it just for the single line "Sex with you is a very Kafka-esque experience."
What was your favorite movie from 2008?