Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Ryland Walker Knight's Two Eyes

Since my own two eyes were not nearly enough to see and evaluate all the repertory/revival film screenings here on Frisco Bay, I'm honored to present local filmgoers' lists of the year's favorites. An index of participants is found here.

The following list comes from writer/filmmaker Ryland Walker Knight, who blogs at Vinyl Is Heavy:

I've noted elsewhere in the sphere of things cinema-related that I held back on my movie-going this last year, for a variety of reasons. To be brief, I might say that life got a little too overstuffed to make the time for films. Or, I made other priorities. In any case, I don't need to bore you with that; the point is that I only made a few pilgrimages that mattered. I made a note of my love for Yang's A Brighter Summer Day over in The Notebook and at VINYL, so I'll table that one for this post.

Here, I'd like to turn to my favorite rep discovery upon my return to the Bay: The Stanford. Granted, I haven't been since last summer, but Brian and I made some trips that paid dividends. We even made one of them a big film nerd event (sup Brecht, SMV, AA, JJL) that involved some amazing guacamole prepared by Sr. Adams, and some odd Hitch hate I've no time for, and a few DVD loans that I've been remiss in attending to and returning to their rightful owner.

In any case, that night we saw Make Way For Tomorrow and Dodsworth, both of which were well worth the trek. Both relics about relics, yet both better than any new movies about giving up love and/or old people. However, my favorite film seen down south was a different Leo McCarey, Ruggles of Red Gap, whose many particulars have regrettably receded in my brain, but whose (excuse me) joie de vivre is everything I love about movies and about life. Put otherwise, its entirety is designed to exemplify the maxim that charity is a synonym for love and it's hilarious. There is an entire scene of Charles Laughton falling on the ground laughing. And, after all, its invocation of Lincoln just makes my little chest want to soar.

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