Leading the pack as usual, today the National Board of Review has unveiled its list of the year's best (American) films. Awards Season is now in full swing — cue up the critics in the gallery.
I have split feelings on this time of year. I tend to view awards cynically but I am an unabashed fan of film lists for a number of reasons, primarily because they're just so much damn fun to make as a critic and very helpful to read as a viewer. You can read my take on film awards and best-of lists from a column of mine on the subject from around this time last year; my opinion hasn't changed much.
So, yes, I'm looking forward to the best-of-the-decade lists as well as the year's best-ofs that will appear in the next few months, and will do my best to link to some of the more intriguing and provoking collections. My own lists, regarding 2009 specifically and the decade at large, will no doubt be delayed. I've been consumed with teaching and my thesis work and haven't had much of a chance to view too films this autumn and winter. My favorites from the year so far would include Goodbye Solo, The Hurt Locker, Public Enemies, Summer Hours, Up, and Where the Wild Things Are, but there are still dozens more films that I have to see and there's no guarantee any of the preceding titles will show up on that final list. There's not even a point in listing everything I haven't seen; it'll be tedious for you and embarrassing for me.
I do hope that this means I'm back to blogging, at least for a few months. It'll still be sporadic, but the hope is there will be a short story collection on the other end that all of you will have the chance to read in print one day.