Lost in the Movies: THE ARCHIVE: 2011


final Sunday Matinee entry • continuing/concluding Remembering the Movies • blogger-selected best of the blogosphere '10 & '11 • contributions to the Musical Countdown • first Evangelion post • more favorite characters • 32 Days of Movies film clip series • 60 Years of Cinema in 40 Seconds video • Monthly Themes: Universal Horror, Animated Animals, Avant-Garde • The Big Ones series (reviewing 32 classics for the first time) • 100 of my favorite films

continuing Chapter 11: Golden Age (September 2010 - January 2011)
Read about this chapter


Jacques Rivette's serpentine debut closes my Sunday Matinee series, studying four European New Waves

Chapter 12: Running on "Remembering" (January - May 2011)
Read about this chapter

What came out this week in movie history, including the end of Rico

What came out this week in movie history, featuring some iconic horror

What came out this week in movie history, featuring a couple meet-cutes

What came out this week in movie history, featuring two iconic blonde movie stars who were gone too soon


What came out this week in movie history, featuring a Charlie Chaplin double feature

What came out this week in movie history, featuring traps in two supernatural medieval castles (and even more buildings-as-monster-movie-traps)

Movie bloggers choose their own favorite posts for 2010, highlighting essays, pictures, videos, and more in the biggest of these round-ups

What came out this week in movie history, including some iconic musical standards

When the Academy axed their on-air Honorary segment, I'd had enough

What came out this week in movie history, featuring Alfred Hitchcock, Preston Sturges, Jacques Demy, Luchino Visconti, and Oliver Stone


What came out this week in movie history, featuring "the Charlie Chaplin of the Jungle"

What came out this week in movie history, featuring the debut of George Lucas

What came out this week in movie history, featuring heroes in a half-shell

What came out this week in movie history..."isn't that a Western with Marlon Brando?"


What came out this week in movie history, featuring two drug movies, two on/offscreen romances, and an early F.W. Murnau

Grand announcement of my intentions for the site - but three weeks later I would (temporarily) close up shop

What came out this week in movie history, featuring some Arthurian lore

Trying to figure out how my site traffic works

Stray pictures gathered after months or years in my backlog

What came out this week in movie history, including Siskel and Ebert praising their favorite film of 1991, Drop Dead Fred

Paying tribute to Sidney Lumet with a film that mixes coming-of-age conventions with the Weather Underground legacy

Screencaps of home movies, original footage, and an old VHS tape I used to make an experimental film years earlier

What came out this week in movie history - concluding the series with Amélie, The Public Enemy, and Yojimbo, among others

Closing down the blog...or so I thought!

Snapshots of Rocky's morning run (works in desktop view much better than mobile)


Speeding off into the distance, a departure that lasted four months (in three years of blogging, my longest break had been a couple weeks) but not forever, as I initially expected

Chapter 13: Video Dreams (September - November 2011)
Read about this chapter


Autumn Forecast for The Dancing Image
Refreshed after a long summer of cinephilia (and no obligation to write about what I was seeing), I returned with a few new projects in mind

Nick Ray on Cinema Viewfinder
Announcing my participation in Tony Dayoub's third annual director blogathon

On Dangerous Ground
A Dostoevsky biographical anecdote introduces my review of this wintry noir

The 10th anniversary of September 11
Sharing pieces I'd written related to the Twin Towers and/or the 2001 attack

Opening the Archives - A Birthday Present for Wonders in the Dark
On the third anniversary of Wonders in the Dark, I paid tribute to that site's history and participants, as well as organizing their material into an archive

Revisiting Alfred Hitchcock's first Hollywood film in the midst of a personal journey through his whole filmography

Musical Countdown - The Gay Divorcee
Combining images from the "Night and Day" dance with Arlene Croce's written analysis

Beatific Apocalypse
It allllllllll returns to nothing... (a visual tribute to The End of Evangelion shortly after discovering the series/film)

Just because you are a character, STILL doesn't mean you have character...
Choosing sixty more characters/ensembles to add to the forty favorites I'd selected a quarter-decade earlier

The Big Picture: The Movies and Me
Reflecting on my cinephilia not long before my twenty-eighth birthday

"32 Days of Movies" begins tomorrow
Initiating a massive chronological film clip series, my first extended foray into video for the site


Dance of the Silents 1912 - 1926 • "32 Days of Movies" Day 1
Vampires glide into bedrooms, Babylonians parade down colossal stairways, abstract forms dance across the screens, and bugs spy on one another's sex lives (film clips)

Jazz Age Visions 1926 - 1929 • "32 Days of Movies" Day 2
Following the first flush of discovery when the miracle of movement itself held everyone thrall, great directors began pushing cinematic boundaries (film clips)

Singing, Dancing, Talking Pictures 1929 - 1934 • "32 Days of Movies" Day 3
Sound can be a royal belch, a scream echoing over the phone, a radio playing across the street, two gutteral gorilla growls, or the sublimely casual way someone asks, "Cigarette?" (film clips)

The Golden Ages 1935 - 1937 • "32 Days of Movies" Day 4
Barnyard concerts in eye-popping color, giant silhouettes dancing in sync, and swashbucklers vying for the attention of Olivia de Havilland (film clips)

Hooray for Hollywood! 1938 - 1940 • "32 Days of Movies" Day 5
America dominates this chapter, and by America we mean Hollywood, and by Hollywood we mean movie stars, and by movie stars we mean Henry Fonda, Katherine Hepburn, and especially Cary Grant (film clips)

Storm Clouds Gather 1940 - 1942 • "32 Days of Movies" Day 6
In a quiet European cafe, a couple bicker and, by bickering, flirt. In another European cafe, the same couple is surrounded by a militant, threatening crowd. World War II hits the movies... (film clips)

Dreaming in Wartime 1943 - 1946 • "32 Days of Movies" Day 7
Sleeping on the eve of battle, napping at a cozy crime scene, climbing from beach to boardroom and chasing mirror-faced demons in dreams, awakened by flashlight on a dirt road (film clips)

Noir and Naturalism 1946 - 1949 • "32 Days of Movies" Day 8
Twin impulses, the dark subjectivity of noir and the clear-eyed observation of naturalism, characterized much of the cinematic world after the war (film clips)

A Violent Release 1949 - 1952 • "32 Days of Movies" Day 9
All but one clip (the extreme pacifist exception proving the rule) involves violence, terror, or war; unplanned but representative of the era's anxiety (film clips)

Frankenstein ("Fixing a Hole")
Launching my Fixing a Hole series for Wonders in the Dark with the theme of Universal Horror for October and a glimpse (sadly all that remains) of guest author Dennis Polifroni's piece

The Restless Fifties 1953 - 1955 • "32 Days of Movies" Day 10
Antsy energy resonates in widescreen movies and live television, the emergence of teen culture and rock 'n' roll (film clips)

An International Era 1955 - 1957 • "32 Days of Movies" Day 11
After a decade of fiercely agonizing over who and what was and wasn't "American," a renewed hunger for global culture coincides with an influx of "foreign films" (film clips)

The Wide View 1957 - 1959 • "32 Days of Movies" Day 12
Threatened by television, its brash younger sibling, American cinema had to grow up - and get big (film clips)

Sixties Rising 1959 - 1962 • "32 Days of Movies" Day 13
When did "the sixties" zeitgeist really begin? Every medium, every cultural outpost has its answer. As far as movies are concerned, the answer is crystal-clear... (film clips)

Runaway Cinema 1962 - 1963 • "32 Days of Movies" Day 14
Running toward, away, nowhere in particular...there was movement afoot and these films captured a spirit equal parts freewheeling and frustrated (film clips)

Tuning In 1963 - 1964 • "32 Days of Movies" Day 15
There's a new soundtrack too, as sixties youth culture gears up and popular music joins the cinematic party (film clips)

That Total Film 1964 - 1966 • "32 Days of Movies" Day 16
"So steeped in classical culture they fantasized it could be solid beyond its fragility, shaking it to the core...ushering in a world they could hardly live in" - Jean-Pierre Gorin (film clips)

The Black Cat
My own first entry in Fixing a Hole - Universal Horror Month reviews Edgar Ulmer's gloriously weird modernist horror

There's Something Happening Here 1966 - 1968 • "32 Days of Movies" Day 17
Black-and-white starts to disappear: from now on, just like that, color will be the default for every chapter; only the most obvious sign of a massive swerve as cinema hits the late sixties (film clips)

Shadow of '68 1968 - 1969 • "32 Days of Movies" Day 18
Modern existentialism with classical grandeur, radical style/extreme violence with familiar genre settings...the calm center conceals the storm (film clips)

To Become Immortal, and Then, to Die. 1969 - 1970 • "32 Days of Movies" Day 19
The closing visual surprise confirms the explosive end of an era, perhaps even a climax in cinema history (film clips)

Dispersed into the Seventies 1970 - 1972 • "32 Days of Movies" Day 20
These films branch off in different directions, "sharing" only a personalized pursuit of individual concerns (film clips)

Welcome to the Arthouse 1972 - 1974 • "32 Days of Movies" Day 21
Attendance at "art houses" thrived and even mainstream Hollywood was darker, more complex, and adventurous than ten years earlier (film clips)

Pray For Us Sinner 1974 - 1976 • "32 Days of Movies" Day 22
Watergate exemplifies U.S. disillusionment with itself and its institutions, but the country's misfortune was cinema's good fortune (film clips)

The Old Dark House
Within a year of Universal establishing the template for horror talkies they were already producing a meta-parody of the genre (my second entry in Fixing a Hole - Universal Horror Month)

'Neath the Marquee Moon 1976 - 1980 • "32 Days of Movies" Day 23
Blue lasers, moonshots, alien eyes, Manhattan as earthbound Milky Way: all provide an otherworldly feel - wish I could include Close Encounters and Eraserhead too! (film clips)

Searching For Answers 1980 - 1983 • "32 Days of Movies" Day 24
Simply uncanny, and unexpected, how many clips merge into a single theme, the quest for answers and the mixed messages one gets in return (film clips)

60 Years of Cinema (in 40 Seconds)
Can you spot all the films from a few frames? This little video - isolated and posted as an afterthought to a larger project - quickly became my most popular work until Journey Through Twin Peaks several years later

The Weird Eighties 1984 - 1986 • "32 Days of Movies" Day 25
Opens with three very mainstream releases, before going off in more esoteric directions, but even these early selections demonstrate the oddness of this decade (film clips)

Musical Countdown - 42nd Street
Hybrid written & video essay features prose and montage side by side, appropriate treatment for a musical countdown entry that balances backstage drama and transcendent choreography

New Age 1987 - 1990 • "32 Days of Movies" Day 26
A loosening, freshness, and spirit of wondrous inquiry blooms in popular culture...call it a curious mysticism (film clips)

A Dark Dawn 1990 - 1993 • "32 Days of Movies" Day 27
The early nineties, a time of Dickensian extremes: hope and promise alongside frustration and worry (film clips)

Musical Countdown - An American in Paris
My last entry in Wonders in the Dark's 2011 genre countdown, a joyful song-and-dance show haunted by the shadow of a recent war

Pulp and Popcorn 1993 - 1995 • "32 Days of Movies" Day 28
I remember this time well; I was ten in the fall of '93, combing weekly listings, studying box office reports, wandering down the hallway of coming attractions posters (film clips)

Name That Film
Identifying all the clips in my 60 Years of Cinema (in 40 Seconds) video

Living in the Nineties 1995 - 1999 • "32 Days of Movies" Day 29
Different but equally evocative strands of the nineties find expression here: earthy grunge or hip-hop vibes, video-game landscapes, lightning-fast montage/collage, lo-fi home video camera footage (film clips)

The Millennial Mood 1999 - 2002 • "32 Days of Movies" Day 30
An atmosphere charged with anticipation greets the turn of a decade/century/millennium, but that energy would be blocked and stifled in the coming years (film clips)

Reality Cinema 2002 - 2006 • "32 Days of Movies" Day 31
Sometimes the chapter's two trends (impressionism/realism) merge, as in the last clip, mirroring the first clip across an unbridgeable gap of time and space (film clips)

Dracula & Drácula (Fixing a Hole)
Linking to the last entry in my Universal Horror series, by Jaime Grijalba, on the Spanish- and English-language versions of a horror classic


Falling into the Future 2006 - 2009 • "32 Days of Movies" Day 32
From movie palace silver screens to home computer monitors, from a single film reel to streaming bits of information, the journey continues (film clips)

Cinema in Pictures
Directory featuring pictures and titles from every film in the clip collection - click each image to go directly to the clip in question

Chapter 14: Long Goodbyes (November - December 2011)
Read about this chapter

The Story of the Fox
A vivid stop-motion fable kicks off the Animated Animals Month of my Fixing a Hole series

My #1 noir: Laura
In tribute to the Wonders in the Dark genre countdown from the year before, I reviewed a personal favorite forties mystery

What's your best post this year?
Inviting movie bloggers to pick their favorite posts of 2011

Desert Island Discs
Filling a small case of DVDs for a cross-country move...which ones did I choose?

My #1 musical: Jammin' the Blues
Glorious proto-music video whose visual impact is echoed in many later classics

Introducing "The Big Ones": 32 classic films reviewed over 7 weeks
These were probably the most canonical films that I had not yet covered on my site

It's a Twister!
The Wizard of Oz was not on my "Big Ones" list because I was saving it for a more ambitious analysis (never written); in the meantime, I paid visual tribute to the tornado sequence

Dumbo ("Fixing a Hole")
Linking to guest writer Stephen Gebbett-Russell's entry in my Animated Animals Month series

The Battleship Potemkin
Revisiting Sergei Eisenstein's revolutionary masterpiece in the autumn of Occupy Wall Street to kickstart my series on The Big Ones

Bicycle Thieves
The moral (but not moralistic) vision of neorealism, as The Big Ones series continues

The Big Ones finds a way into Jean-Luc Godard's debut feature through the lengthy bedroom dialogue

Not just a glamorous romance but a fervent expression of antifascist commitment, as I discovered on The Big Ones rewatch

Citizen Kane
Each narrator presents a different viewpoint, style, period, and even genre, investigated in-depth for The Big Ones

Memories, Dreams, and Reflections
Visual tribute to the flashbacks and fantasies in Wild Strawberries

An Open Letter to Toontown
Should the cast of Who Framed Roger Rabbit "Occupy Tinseltown"?

City Lights
What makes the end of Chaplin's poignant comedy so affecting? The Big Ones attempts to answer...

The Decalogue
The Big Ones studies each chapter of Krzysztof Kieslowski's ten-part anthology, loosely riffing on the ten commandments with a unique visual approach for each

La Dolce Vita
Fellini's famous hit didn't resonate with me at first, but for some reason I was compelled to rewatch it a few hours later, and it clicked (I re-visit this process for The Big Ones)

E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial
Looking at the childhood favorite again for The Big Ones, I'm more taken with the beginning and end than the middle

Disney's ambitious animation characterizes yet another anthology film in The Big Ones line-up

Wandering Across Europe
Visual tribute to Yoshishige Yoshida's dazling riff on Antonioni and Resnais

Bambi, book and movie
Comparing Felix Salten's novel to Walt Disney's adaptation for my Fixing a Hole - Animated Animals Month, I notice their differing treatment of Bambi's parents, Man, and Gobo (who's cut from the film completely)

The General
The Big Ones recognizes Buster Keaton's talent for realism within slapstick (and vice-versa) in his Civil War chase comedy

The Godfather and The Godfather Part II
Considering the Godfathers alone and together as The Big Ones doubles up for the first time

Grand Illusion
What is the illusion, exactly? That ambiguity is part of what makes this one of The Big Ones


It's a Wonderful Life
This multifaceted entry in The Big Ones is like switching the channel from a novelistic communal portrait to an intense psychodrama to an episode of The Twilight Zone (topped off by a Christmas special)

Jules and Jim
For my Big Ones review, I reflect the way I've seesawed back and forth on one of Francois Truffaut's most beloved films

Farewell, My Lovely...
Pictures from Murder, My Sweet, one of the most dazzling noirs (and my favorite Raymond Chandler adaptation)

Avant-Garde: The Silents ("Fixing a Hole")
Linking to guest writer Maurizio Roca's entry to launch my Avant Garde Month

Long transcript of interview
The full version of my conversation with a young filmmaker

The Killer, the Filmmaker, and Their Modus Operandi: A Conversation with Mitch Rouse, director of "M.O."
Talking to a director deep in pre-production

Announcements - The Movie Timeline & other stuff
Adding a chronological directory of films to my site

Highlights for the holidays
Highlighting my work from the late fall of 2011

Avant-Garde: THE LEGENDS
Maya Deren, Kenneth Anger, and Stan Brakhage - a look at mid-twentieth century American avant-garde cinema as Fixing a Hole resumes

Celebrating the work of Amos Vogel and the international experimental films he promoted (an entry in Fixing a Hole)

Blog 11
My fourth and final round-up of the movie blogosophere, with bloggers once again choosing their favorites of their own work

Metropolis ("The Tower of Babel")
Resuming The Big Ones series by focusing on a specific sequence in Fritz Lang's classic

The Passion of Joan of Arc
There's nothing quite like the phenomenon of experiencing the Dreyer/Falconetti collaboration (an entry for The Big Ones)

What does The Big Ones series see in Ingmar Bergman's ink blot?

Getting lost in the Where's Waldo world of Jacques Tati for The Big Ones

Raging Bull, the Last of the Consensus Classics
One of the more recent Big Ones exists at several crossroads, between Hollywood and neorealism, postwar "bigness" and post-sixties edge

The Big Ones looks at a kaleidoscopic narrative where the only real variable is the woman - the accounts of rape/murder are less about different variations of truth than about a single truth covered up for different reasons

Rear Window (& thoughts on Dial M for Murder)
Two 1954 Alfred Hitchcock films about marital murder, shot in color, and starring Grace Kelly; one is one of the Big Ones, the other an interesting companion

Discussing The Rules of the Game
An unusual Big Ones entry, composed of various responses to my forum post on why I didn't "get" Jean Renoir's most acclaimed film

Schindler's List and Munich
Although I originally intended to include just one of these titles in The Big Ones, they make a compelling pair by playing off one another's genre, maturity, and point of view

The Searchers
The world of this Big Ones western entry stretches beyond the frame and even the narrative, as if it existed long before the onscreen story begins

Avant-Garde: WHAT'S IN A NAME?
Three experimental films that play with language in different ways: The Girl Chewing Gum, Rabbit, A Walk Through H - wrapping up Avant-Garde Month and my Fixing a Hole series

Merry Christmas from Monika and Yoko ("32 Days of Movies")
Updating my 32 Days of Movies clip series with a few additions

The Seven Samurai
The Big Ones asks if Akira Kurosawa's most celebrated film is individualist or communitarian

The Seventh Seal
Although for many this was Ingmar Bergman's first famous film (a no-brainer for inclusion in The Big Ones), it was also his nineteenth - a culmination of his early work as well as a breakthrough

Taxi Driver
One of my earliest reviews, written when I was fifteen, provides insight into what first drew me to one of The Big Ones

The Third Man
The Big Ones applies an existentialist lens to the British noir

Tokyo Story
Yasujiro Ozu's most celebrated film - landing it in The Big Ones series - is also one of his most atypical

The penultimate entry in The Big Ones is characterized by an omniscient, observational style often used playfully, but here reserved for tragedy

Last Call
Highlights from a very busy back half of December as I prepare to say goodbye - for now

100 of My Favorite Movies
After months devoted to surveying cinema history, I listed a hundred favorites; now the titles all link to my subsequent Favorites series exploring each in turn

Vertigo, Vertigo Variations, and Watching Movies While Blogging
The final entry in The Big Ones morphs into a meta-essay about blogger burnout while also touching on a recent video essay about Vertigo

Explore The Dancing Image - TOP POSTS
Highlights from three and a half years of the site, as I prepare for another long break

(I covered this year on Episodes 11, 12, 13 and 14 of my Patreon podcast)

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