Favourite film discoveries of 2017

It has been another good year of film discoveries for me. I am more and more interested in seeking out repertory screenings and feel lucky that I can travel to watch these films. 

Il Cinema Ritrovato in Bologna was a major highlight when it came to film discoveries and I hope to go back next year for more. The Berlinale Retrospective section offered a riches of science fiction films I had never seen before. BFI Southbank in London is my guaranteed cinema where I know I will discover memorable old films and EYE in Amsterdam has upped its game in its film prgramming. When I am not travelling, I try to watch old films on VOD, mostly on MUBI which continous to be a great source for films I don't have access to otherwise.  

This year I watched two films that have been on my wish list for years and waited till I got a chance to watch them on the big screen. I watched Barry Lyndon at Berlinale, an exquisite film that I hope I get to see again on the big screen and Lawrence of Arabia was screening on 70mm at BFI in London in September, and that was a fanstastic experience too. Both were worth the wait as I can't imagine I would've cherished them the same if watched on the small screen (I remember switching channels after watching 20 mins of Lawrence of Arabia on TV many years ago because I thought this is not how I should be watching this film).

Additionally, this was the year I finally got to see not one, but two Douglas Sirk films, on glorious 35mm technicolor. I've been waiting to watch his films for years and was thrilled to see he was included in the schedule at Il Cinema Ritrovato. 

I was also able to watch a few David Lynch films in cinemas that I had not seen before and was perfect timing to compare and link them to Twin Peaks: The Return. 

Here's my top 50 film discoveries of the year: 


Film Festivals / Special Screenings

  1. Barry Lyndon (Stanley Kubrick, 1975, DCP, Berlinale) 
  2. Lawrence of Arabia (David Lean, 1962, 70mm, BFI, London)
  3. Home from the Hill (Vincente Minelli, 1960, 35mm, Il Cinema Ritrovato)   
  4. Beau Travail (Claire Denis, 35mm, BFI London)
  5. Written on the Wind (Douglas Sirk, 1956, 35mm, Il Cinema Ritrovato)
  6. All That Heaven Allows (Douglas Sirk, 1955, 35mm, Il Cinema Ritrovato)
  7. Ladies Must Love (E. A. Dupont, 1933, 35mm, Il Cinema Ritrovato)
  8. Wise Blood (John Huston, 1979, DCP, Il Cinema Ritrovato)
  9. The Graduate (Mike Nichols, 1967, DCP, Il Cinema Ritrovato) 
  10. Friends of Eddie Coyle (Peter Yates, 1976, 35mm, Il Cinema Ritrovato) 
  11. World on a Wire / Welt am Draht (Rainer Werner Fassbinder, 1973, Berlinale)  
  12. Strange Days (Kathryn Bigelow, 1995, 35mm, Berlinale) 
  13. THX 1138 (George Lucas, 1971, 35mm, Berlinale) 
  14. An Autumn Afternoon (Yasujirō Ozu, 1967, DCP, BFI, London) 
  15. Suspiria (Dario Argento, 1977, DCP Restored, BFI London Film Festival) 
  16. Terminator 2: Judgement Day (James Cameron, 1991, DCP Restored, Novo Cinema, Dubai) 
  17. Letters from a Dead Man (Konstantin Lopuschanski, 1986, 35mm, Berlinale) 
  18. Nuovomondo / Golden Door (Emanuele Crialese, 2006, DCP, Piazza Maggiore, Bologna)
  19. The Cotton Club (Francis Ford Coppola, 1984, 35mm, Berlinale ) 

David Lynch films at various cinemas in the summer: 

  1. Lost Highway (1997, 35mm, Prince Charles Cinema, London)
  2. The Straight Story (1999, 35mm, Prince Charles Cinema, London)
  3. Eraserhead (1977, DCP, Il Cinema Ritrovato) 
  4. Wild at Heart (1990, 35mm, EYE, Amsterdam)

Martin Scorsese Season at EYE, Amsterdam, August 2017

  1. Taxi Driver (1976, 4K DCP)
  2. Raging Bull (1980, DCP)
  3. Good Fellas (1990, 35m) (I first watched this on VHS when it came out in 1990 in Dubai) 
  4. Kundun (1997, 35mm)

The Grime and the Glamour: NYC 1976–90 at Barbican, London, Sep/Oct 2017

  1. Smithereens (Susan Seidelman, 1982, 35mm)  
  2. Ms 45  (aka Angel of Vengeance) (Abel Ferrara, 1981, DCP)
  3. Tally Brown (Rosa von Praunheim, 1979, 16mm) 

VOD (in order or release date)

  1. Gilda (Charles Vidor, 1946)
  2. In a Lonely Place (Nicholas Ray, 1950)
  3. Summer with Monika (Ingmar Bergman, 1953)
  4. From Here to Eternity (Fred Zinnemann, 1953)
  5. Nightfall (Jacques Tourneur, 1957)
  6. Le Trou (Jacques Becker, 1960)
  7. Bunny Lake is Missing (Otto Preminger, 1965)
  8. Closely Watched Trains ( Jirí Menzel, 1966)
  9. Branded to Kill (Seijun Suzuki, 1967)
  10. The Young Girls of Rochefort ( Jacques Demy, 1967)
  11. Wicker Man ( Robin Hardy, 1973)
  12. Picnic at Hanging Rock (Peter Weir, 1975)
  13. The Bitter Tears of Petra Von Kant (Rainer Werner Fassbinder, 1975) 
  14. Ali: Fear Eats the Soul (Rainer Werner Fassbinder, 1974) 
  15. The Marriage of Maria Braun (Rainer Werner Fassbinder, 1979)
  16. Modern Romance (Albert Brooks, 1981)
  17. Paris Texas (Wim Wenders, 1984)
  18. Moonstruck (Norman Jewison, 1987)
  19. King of New York (Abel Ferrara, 1990)
  20. Mullholland Drive (2001, VOD)

Favourite film discoveries of 2015

Favourite film discoveries of 2016