See our Best of Detroit 2020 winners.

Screen sweepstakes 

Some of the past year’s most powerful movies took on American gun culture, remembered the Motown hit factory, explored a whacked-out mind in love and made writer’s block seem interesting. A fantasy about Hobbits turned in another epic installment and our greatest living director showed us more about New York’s history than we ever imagined. These top vote-getters and more were chosen by our film gang for their year-end Top 10 lists, with room for two extras in categories of their own making. Of course, we never leap until we’ve looked — at tons of movies — to select the most exciting cinematic visions of the year.

Of course, we never leap until we’ve looked — at tons of movies — and selected the most exciting cinematic visions of the year. Our film gang offers up a batch of top-10 Lists, with room for two extras in categories of their own making.

 

James Keith La Croix

Adaptation — Spike Jonze
Ararat — Atom Egoyan
Die Another Day — Lee Tamahori
8 Women — François Ozon
Gangs of New York — Martin Scorsese
The Last Kiss — Gabriele Muccino
The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers — Peter Jackson
Punch-Drunk Love — Paul Thomas Anderson
The Ring — Gore Verbinski
The Royal Tenenbaums — Wes Anderson
Best directorial debut: Antwone Fisher — Denzel Washington
Most important documentary: Bowling for Columbine — Michael Moore

 

Erin Podolsky

Adaptation — Spike Jonze
Chicago — Rob Marshall
Das Experiment — Oliver Hirschbiegel
Far From Heaven — Todd Haynes
The Hours — Stephen Daldry
Igby Goes Down — Burr Steers
The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers — Peter Jackson
The Pianist — Roman Polanski
Punch-Drunk Love — Paul Thomas Anderson
The Quiet American — Philip Noyce
Best horror movie: Pinocchio — written, directed by and starring Roberto Benigni.
Best performance by a Culkin: Kristin Stewart (obviously separated at birth from Kieran, Rory and Big Mac) in Panic Room.

 

Anita Schmaltz

About a Boy — Chris and Paul Weitz
Bowling for Columbine — Michael Moore
The Dangerous Lives of Altar Boys — Peter Care
Far From Heaven — Todd Haynes
The Good Girl — Miguel Arteta
The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers — Peter Jackson
Punch-Drunk Love — Paul Thomas Anderson
Sex and Lucia — Julio Medem
Spirited Away — Hayao Miyazaki
World Traveler — Bart Freundlich
Best film as religious reform: El Crimen del padre Amaro — Carlos Carrera
Best messing with time and mind music meta-documentary: 24 Hour Party People — Michael Winterbottom

 

George Tysh

Bowling for Columbine — Michael Moore
Gangs of New York — Martin Scorsese
Gosford Park — Robert Altman
Heaven — Tom Tykwer
Monster’s Ball — Marc Forster
The Piano Teacher — Michael Haneke
Punch-Drunk Love — Paul Thomas Anderson
Time Out — Laurent Cantet
What Time Is It There? — Tsai Ming-liang
Y Tu Mamá También — Alfonso Cuarón
Horror-metal jubilee: Resident Evil — Paul W.S. Anderson
Pride to the people: Standing in the Shadows of Motown — Paul Justman

 

Richard C. Walls

Bowling for Columbine — Michael Moore
Code Unknown — Michael Haneke
Full Frontal — Steven Soderbergh
Gangs of New York — Martin Scorsese
Insomnia — Christopher Nolan
Kandahar — Mohsen Makhmalbaf
Minority Report — Steven Spielberg
Punch-Drunk Love — Paul Thomas Anderson
Secretary — Steven Shainberg
What Time Is It There? — Tsai Ming-liang
Honorable mention: About Schmidt — Alexander Payne
Honorable mention: Adaptation — Spike Jonze

 

Consensus Top of the Crop (total votes in parentheses):

Punch-Drunk Love — Paul Thomas Anderson (5)
Bowling for Columbine — Michael Moore (4)
Adaptation — Spike Jonze (3)
Gangs of New York — Martin Scorsese (3)
The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers — Peter Jackson (3) E-mail comments to George Tysh at gtysh@metrotimes.com

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