Top Ten Repertory Films of 2005

Top Ten lists are always skewed because no critic ever actually sees every film released in a given year. I admit that I don’t like horror exploitation films, so I didn’t see Saw II. Maybe it was great, but my list won’t be able to account for it.

Repertory Top Ten’s are even more skewed because to be fair you have to have seen each film within twelve months. So you can’t put in ringers like Citizen Kane. On the other hand, if you’ve seen a lot of old movies, your Top Ten will be filled with obscure films that in reality may not be as good as Citizen Kane. It’s like putting in The Wizard of Oz when you were supposed to have seen it years ago already.

That said, here are the older films I most enjoyed seeing last year–even if I had seen them before:

His Wooden Wedding–Charley Chase short with one of the best handwritten warnings in movies: “Beware! The woman you are about to marry has a wooden leg. A Friend.”
Just One Look–Sweet, unpretentious Hong Kong coming-of-age story starring the Twins.
The King of Comedy–Stephen Chow comedy made before Shaolin Soccer and Kung Fu Hustle.
The Last Picture Show–If only for Cloris Leachman
A Letter to Three Wives–In my opinion better than Mankiewicz’s All About Eve.
The More the Merrier–Doesn’t hold up entirely, but the make-out scene is still incredible.
Nine Lives/We Die Alone–WWII Norwegian survival saga made in the 1950s.
Remember the Night–Heartbreaking Christmas tale written by Preston Sturges.
Ride the Pink Horse–Tough, sharp noir about a gang war in the Southwest.
Two for the Road–Swoony Henry Mancini music, superb Frederic Raphael script.


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