Jarv goes to the takeaway and comes back with the 10 best Asian films of the decade

Ha-so

Jonah started me thinking about this yesterday due to the presence of that overblown shitfest Hero on his list of Asian films of the decade.  Which can be found here, and is up to his usual high standards. Go and read it.

While I do have to agree with some of them, others (fucking Hero) wouldn’t get within a thousand miles of mine, and as he challenged me to put up or shut up, here’s my top 10 of the decade:

*edit* Firstly, I’m kicking off with this- it got it’s UK release in 2000, but was apparently 1999 so is borderline for selection-

Audition (2000)

If you really must do Torture Porn (and believe me, I’d rather you didn’t) then this is how you do it. I normally don’t like Miike, because I think he just does twisted for the sake of being twisted, but when he gets it right, this is the result. Nightmare inducing stuff in a grim and depressing but all to realistic setting. Some great performances and a slow burn pace help this film lacerate your cortex and I guarantee that it will stay with you long after you turn it off.

“Kiri-kiri-kiri” indeed and a warning to all the lonely fuckers out there about the dangers of online dating- you could end up in a burlap sack with no feet, no tongue and needles sticking out of places that needles really aren’t meant to go.

Now, the list proper:

10) The Good, The Bad and The Weird (2009)

An Asian version of a spaghetti western. Which is appropriate considering that Pasta is from the Orient. TGTBATW is a madcap adventure film following the chase by the three titular characters haring around Mongolia after a treasure map. Great fun, smashing action, a few genuine moments of comedy and worth a look by anyone.

Furthermore, the cinematography and score are marvelous. It may owe more than a passing nod to Sergio Leone, but I just don’t care.

If that’s not enough, I’ve just discovered that the lead actors did their own stunts (several of which are extremely risky) which I think just adds to the coolness.

9) Chocolate (2008)

Alright, alright, I know it may be a 2 dimensional moronic plot, and I know that superficial is it’s middle name, but fuck me can she move, and don’t pretend it isn’t funny watching an autistic girl beat people up.

I mean, come on, if you don’t enjoy this then there isn’t a chance that you’re ever going to enjoy martial arts cinema. Extended scenes of ultra-violence married to possibly the stupidest excuse for fighting that I think I’ve ever seen. Breathtaking choreography and damned good fun.

 

8 ) Infernal Affairs (2004)

Fuck Scorcese, Nicholson, and Maaaaaat Daaaaaaaaamon.

This is the real deal, and the didn’t get within a thousand miles of capturing the awesomeness- tense, taut stuff underpinned by several superb performances (notably Tony Leung) and the ending simply destroys the rubbish nonsense cobbled together in the Boston atrocity.

Infernal Affairs is a mob film of the highest calibre, and worth a place on almost any list.

 

 

7) The Host (2006)

A good shout by Jonah, this one. The Host is a thoroughly enjoyable monster movie, with a clever subtext about mass paranoia in the face of the unknown.

Alright, the main character may be a retard, and the whole family may have special skills to help them kill the beast, but fuck it, I don’t care. This film is worth it’s place on the list just for the scene with the monster exploding out of the river and ravaging the poeple on the bank- exciting, kinetic, clear- and miracle of miracles, they held the camera steady.

Top drawer.

 

6)Oldboy (2003)

Again, another one from Jonah’s list, but personally, I think it’s the weakest of the 3 Vengeance films- I love the trilogy so much I’m including all of them.

Having said that, Chan Wook Park’s middle film is still a mighty grand guignol of concentrated nastiness and the scene where he eats the live octopus makes me feel ill even writing about it.

The best news I heard in yonks was when this slipped through Spielberg’s fingers. He would have ruined it.

And no, for the record, training in a room for 15 years on your own does not give you a coat of invulnerability. You will, in fact, get your arse kicked.

 

5) Lady Vengeance (2005)

Park didn’t have any difficult 3rd album problems with this one. A storming film- although probably the least complex of the vengeance films, given that the villain clearly deserves it, and the heroine is clearly in the right.

However, having said that, the prison scenes are simply superb charting Gu-eum-ja’s rise up the convict heirarchy to “witch”, and the vengeance sequence itself is downright harrowing.

Beautifully shot, wonderfully scored and about as poetic as a movie about revenge can be. This is how you do vengeance, Tarantino, you talentless fuck.

 

4) Sympathy for Mr. Vengeance(2002)

Well, I’m nothing if not predictable. However, this is my favourite of the Vengeance trilogy. I actually thought about adding this to my overall top 10, but damn it, there’s other films out there that I like more.

This is, I think, the most complicated of the Vengeance films- it doesn’t take a moral stance at all. I mean, sure, Ryu may have been robbed for a kidney and fired for no reason by President Park but Park isn’t a stereotypical fat cat capitalist bastard. Ryu makes an utter pig’s ear of his extortion plan and the Jacobean everybody croaks ending can be seen coming a mile away.

I read somewhere that the original idea was to fade to black and white half way through the film- what a great idea. Pity they didn’t do it.

I find it a real shame  that this film is largely forgotten due to the profile of it’s successor, but for me this is one of the finest films of the decade.

 

3) Red Cliff (2008)

See, John Woo hasn’t lost it. America clearly doesn’t suit him, and his massive historical epic is simply fucking magnificent.

Multi-layered stuff, visually stunning, deep, moving and gripping. Of course, my opinion may be coloured by the fact that I knew next to nothing about this period of Chinese History.

The ubiquitous Tony Leung once again excells, but he’s hardly alone. Watch and marvel at a master’s return to form.

But for fuck’s sake see the full length Red Cliff- avoid the truncated American version.Why they insist on doing this is a fucking mystery to me.

 

2) Daisy (2006)

This makes my best of the decade list, so I’m not going in to too much detail here. Needless to say, it’s another Korean masterclass. Inexplicaly, and disgracefully, this hasn’t had a UK release, so I can’t tell you to see it (unless you feel like downloading it, or some other such naughtiness, but you wouldn’t do that, would you?) but I can recommend it in the strongest possible terms.

A genuine tragedy with a spellbinding action ending. However, it isn’t the action that keeps you in this- pleasant as it is when it comes. Let me put it this way, Mrs. Jarv cried buckets from about the half way point of this film (and she sat down to watch it grumbling about “more fucking hitmen nonsense”), and she has lent my DVD out all over London. Luckily for her, it hasn’t been damaged.

Daisy is a magical, delightful film that manages to pull a genuine emotional response from the most cynical of viewers.

 

1) Battle Royale (2001)

Not just my favourite Asian film of the decade, but one of my favourite films of all-time. A blood soaked Lord of the Flies done Japanese style.Another one that I’m not going to go into too much detail about, because it also makes my top 10 of the decade.

Beat Takeshi is on awesome form as teacher Kitano, but the real stars of the piece are the kids- and how they managed to make me give a fuck about almost all of the characters (with the exception of sociopath Kiriyama) is wondrous.

Battle Royale is a tour de force of cinematic violence, even if it was unjustly banned in about 4 countries. However, having said that, what elevates it above the herd is the clever little touches- Kitano’s daughter, for example, is voiced by the sister of lead actress Noriko, thus making her voice somewhat familiar and adding another unnerving edge to Kitano’s obsession.

One more thing, is it wrong to want Mitsuko to win?

That’s my top 10 list, but these are films I considered for it, but didn’t add so I’m giving them all honorouble mentions:

Ong Bak, Ip Man, I’m a Cyborg but I’m Ok, Dumplings, Assembly, Kung Fu Hustle, Invisible Target, Protege, A bittersweet life, The Eye (fuck you all), The Twilight Samurai, Warlords, Mongol, Tale of 2 Sisters and The Clone Returns Home. Brotherhood of  War

Now, Finally, a big FUCK YOU to the worst Asian Film of the decade, and a contender for most offensive sequel of all time:

 

Battle Royale 2: Requiem

Keeping both the colon and the word Requiem in good stead, this is an utter disgrace. This is the film that holds down it’s predecessor and then takes a massive dump on it. Vile, incomprehensible, loathsome, over the top without being entertaining and Fukusaku Jr needs a thorough bitchslap for defiling his father’s superb original.

Pah, I hate this rubbish.

 

On that slightly depressing note, I’m off. However, I will return with Best European Films next, then Best American, before doing my definitive top 10 (now that I’ve come to terms with the fact that Avatar isn’t going to be on it).

 

Ciao

 

Jarv

PS- I’d also like to thank Hawaiin Organ Donor for turning me on to a lot of this stuff- he can usually be found lurking at Aint it Bale news, and is the nicest miserable bugger I know. Cheers mate.

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About Jarv

Workshy cynic, given to posting reams of nonsense on the internet and watching films that have inexplicably got a piss poor reputation.

91 responses to “Jarv goes to the takeaway and comes back with the 10 best Asian films of the decade”

  1. Droid says :

    I’ve. Seen. Zero. Of. Those. Films.

    But an interesting list and IA and RC are must see’s for me.

    And Avatar should be on your Top 10 sight unseen, motherfucker!

  2. Droid says :

    Jarv, re: hyperlink to Jonah’s list. You should change it so it opens in a new window. That way we still keep people on this page.

  3. Jarv says :

    From this list, I would make it an urgency to see Daisy, Red Cliff, Battle Royale, and Infernal Affairs.

  4. Droid says :

    Yeah, never heard of Daisy. Sounds like it’s very good. I’ve always baulked at the concept of battle royale. A competition where school kids kill each other. Not really my cup of tea.

    I won’t go near anything by Miike.

  5. Jarv says :

    Audition is easily the best thing Miike has done- but it’s not easy watching. It’s not like the nastiness of Ichi or Visitor Q.

    Battle Royale isn’t as violent as it’s made out to be. It’s got a horrific reputation, but I don’t honestly think it’s that bad. Sure, Kiriyama machine-gunning the prone girls is harsh, but it isn’t honestly that awful.

    It is, however, superb. The special edition with the deleted scenes that fill out Mitsuko’s background especially.

    • Droid says :

      Okay, well I may give it a go one day. It can sit in a long (and growing) list of movies I should see before I die.

      • Jarv says :

        Fair enough.

        I can’t stress enough, though, avoid the sequel. It’s a fucking outrage.

      • Bartleby says :

        Droid, avoid Audition. It’s a messed up film. Technically, everything Jarv says about is true but being effective only makes it that much more messed in the head. Before you swear off all Miike, realize that the guy is uber-prolific and very versatile–meaning he can make crazy crap in any genre. As a result, you should absolutely see Happiness of the Katakuris, which is his closest thing to a family film, and would get a PG-13 at worst here in the states. In Australia it’s probably rated G.

        Battle Royale is harrowing but not overly explicit or exploitative. It has to be a little bit, but if you view it as the modern day version of Jonathan Swift’s Modest Proposal it makes alot more sense. I despise overly gruesome or depraved films, and BR isn’t one of those.

      • Jarv says :

        Happiness is such a fucking mess, though, Jonah- I think Audition is a far more accomplished film.

        It’s a messed up film, but is the only effective and justifiable torture porn I’ve ever seen.

        Bear in mind that the torture comes at the climax of the film- and it isn’t about the torture per se.

        It’s a film to admire rather than like, but I still think it’s Miike’s best film.

        Miike to avoid: Visitor Q.

    • Bartleby says :

      Oh yea, Happiness is barely a movie–‘My Uvula!’–but its’ a must see based on how freakin ridiculousness it all is. When the mullet sailor turns around after the little girl says “Daddy left us” and looks toward the camera and prolcaims in his best Kool Aid Man english: ‘OH YEAH!’ and then the whole cast start dancing to ‘Brazil’? Can yo really resist? I didnt even mention the zombie dance number, the grotesque sumo death, the sing-along, the claymation, or grandpa knocking crows out of the sky with logs of wood.

      Audition, on the other hand, is a master’s class in destroying your audience and their expectations. I would in no way call it torture porn. But at the same time, dude, *SPOILERS* she is vomiting and feeding it to him *SPOILERS*

      • Jarv says :

        Fair enough,

        Audition is, though, actually a good film, whereas I don’t think Happiness is. Happiness is bugnuts, true.

        They’re both legions better than Visitor Q and Ichi.

  6. Jarv says :

    I’ve managed to get quite a good spread across the whole decade here- not like when I do American films and they basically all come from 2 clumps.

  7. Jarv says :

    Hmm. Audition comes out in this decade for the UK release (I did check), but 1999 otherwise.

    Shall I take it off?

  8. Droid says :

    Fuck it. Leave it in.

  9. Jarv says :

    Well, if it doesn’t make it, then I’m putting The Good The Bad and The weird in at 10 and moving the other 2 up.

    • Bartleby says :

      I’d remove it Jarv. It was 99, which is why it wasn’t considered for my list. And everyone has seen Audition. TGTBTW deserves some love, which I admit, I should have given it.

      As for your list:

      Funny that the entire Vengeance trilogy is on there, but not really something to argue with. They are all great films. I tried to choose my favorite of the 3 so as not to monopolize the list, but they are 3 different films and if you truly loved all of them similarly then it makes sense for them to be there.

      I suppose, with my list, I did try a little harder for variation than if someone had asked me to just recall my top 15 off the top of my head. That may help explain why there are some things there that might seem to not belong. Trying to represent the wuxia genre is one of the primary reasons Hero was on there (I see Red Cliff as something a little different despite have a few similar elements)but I’d still argue that in it’s way it is a great film. However, I’m weary of arguing it here.

      Chocolate made it over Ong Bak? I’d probably have put Ong Bak or Ip Man here–Chocolate felt slight as you mentioned–but I will say I have never seen such fine reckless endangerment.

      Infernal Affairs–craps all over The Departed.Liked the ending way better. Ever see Johnnie To’s Election? That almost made my list too.

      And, the highlight of your list, in my mind is that it properly pummels BR II. What. A. Piece. Awful in every single way. Talk about not understanding the original.

      Great work Jarv.

      Also, and I plan to do it at my site, I’m giving a shout-out to Ti Guk Gi: The Brotherhood of War. I simply forgot about it. I’ve considered going back and revamping the list, (and yes, I think Hero, not Royale would be the one to drop off) to include it.

      • Jarv says :

        Shit. I forgot that too.

        The thing about the Vengeance trilogy is, for me, that it isn’t really a trilogy.

        I suppose thematically they are all about vengeance, but they’re tonally different, there are no recurring characters or actors and damn it, they’re all so good.

        I did think about including a good few other films, but really these are the ones I consider to be the best of the decade.

        I’m going back to edit, and move Audition to it’s own category.

      • Jarv says :

        Election- for some fucking reason, I haven’t seen this.

        I keep meaning to, then getting distracted- to think I watched garbage like Teenage Hooker becomes killing machine and Violent Cop on my recent Asian binge.

        What was the one with Takeshi in it as a gay Samurai? I seem to remember that being good as well.

      • Bartleby says :

        Taboo. Jarv, I know we got sidetracked by that Hero nonsense, but did you ever see any of Yamada’s samurai films–Twilight Samurai, Hidden Blade and Love and Honour? Al three topnotch.

        Also, I kind of dug Takeshi’s Zatoichi, although I guess it’s also kind of pretentious.

      • Jarv says :

        I quite like Zatoichi, and I also like Twilight Samurai. Haven’t seen the other 2 though.

        I always forget about Zatoichi. I think because I’m pissed off at him for that rubbish Violent Cop.

        Anyhoo, article edited- and I’m not touching it again.

      • Jarv says :

        The thing about Hero (I honestly prefer House of Flying Daggers to it, and I don’t particularly like Daggers) is that it just feels so fucking pleased with itself.

        I know that sounds like a strange thing to say, but from Jet Li talking about his epic fight at the beginning to the massive sheets of green silk flowing around during fighting, the whole thing is like the Cell.

        It is visually stunning, but without a decent story to hang it on, I was just lost and bored and I hate that- however, the shot of Jet Li facing the arrows was superb.

        Maybe I just don’t like wuxia. Wouldn’t be surprised- considering that I don’t especially like Daggers or Crouching Tiger either.

        This isn’t continuing the argument, but seeing as I dismissed it with “overblown shitfest”, I think a bit of an explanation is in order.

  10. Jarv says :

    Depends if Audition counts as 21st Century. If it doesn’t then, Chocolate goes up one place.

    I really, really like Infernal Affairs and it drives me to distraction when I see people say that The Departed is better.

  11. Jarv says :

    Too right- have you seen the out takes to it? She catches a few of them a good few times. Ouch.

  12. Jarv says :

    I also considered Machine Girl, but changed my mind because it’s even flimsier than Chocolate.

    • Bartleby says :

      in the end, though, it’s our lists. If we truly liked something that much, then it goes there. Which is why I put Hero there–everyone in the world could throw cigarettes at my eyes, but there it is. I like HOD’s approach, which is, if

      Unfortunately, because there are just too many asian films to remember, I missed one that would slide everything down. If you are adjusting Audition, I’m gonna add Ti Guk Gi, and another five honorable mentions that would include Hero, Daisy, I’m A Cyborg, Ip Man, and Syndromes and a Century

      • Jarv says :

        Totally,

        I was genuinely stunned that Daisy didn’t make your list. I think it’s one of the best films I’ve seen this year.

      • Bartleby says :

        well, part of it was that I thought some of it–and just a little mind you–was needlessly over-dramatic–towards the end. However, if you consider that it was unabashedly melodrama from the start, then it’s still playing within its rules.

      • Jarv says :

        Yeah, I can see that- however, judging from Mrs. Jarv’s response to it, I think it nailed what it was going for.

        Do you think it counts as a chick flick? Even if it is (ostensibly) about hitmen.

      • koutchboom says :

        You know, Daisy really didn’t do much for me. I mean I’ve seen it, I thought it was ok at the time, but for the life of me I can’t remember shit about it.

  13. Jarv says :

    Ip man is mintier than the Trebor factory.

  14. Jarv says :

    Also, there was some Japanese nonsense about a book of death on the other night that I watched, but I can’t remember what it was called. It wasn’t very good, mind.

    • Bartleby says :

      death note?

      • Jarv says :

        May well have been. Demons and whatnot kept turning up. It wasn’t very good.

        Also, I deliberately avoided all the J Horror, as none of them are as good as Ring. With the possible exception of Cell.

      • Bartleby says :

        really bad looking demons with wings that looked like they belonged in a rankin and bass claymation special? Yea, that was deathnote.

      • Jarv says :

        That’s the one. Sort of like someone had stapled papier mache to the bunny out of Donny Darko.

        Not good.

    • Jarv says :

      So I shouldn’t bother with part 2 then?

    • Bartleby says :

      “That’s the one. Sort of like someone had stapled papier mache to the bunny out of Donny Darko.”

      Coffee meet keyboard.

    • Jarv says :

      “Just to make sure it’s the right film, is it the one where the kid becomes a vigilante of sorts by writing names in a notebook and he has a goofy CGI demon buddy who crops up now and then to talk to him? If so, that’s Death Note.”

      That is a spot on description of it. It wasn’t great, and I don’t care enough about the characters.

    • Bartleby says :

      Yea, Death Note and its ilk are part of this new movement in Japanese film where they are making manga into live action films but the result is warmed-over teen movie fodder. They keep churning them out for the young-uns, not unlike Twilight. Which, by the way, I was thunderstruck when I walked out of Armored screening last night and saw a poster for Twilight:Eclipse with a release date of this summer????? What?

    • Jarv says :

      But they’ve been doing live action Manga for years (ichi leaping to mind)

      So what you’re saying is that Death Note= Japanese Twilight?

      Horrible.

      Which reminds me- I’m seeing The Descent 2 tomorrow and I’m already sharpening knives for it.

  15. tombando says :

    Haven’t seen any of them either. Clearly Jarv needs to google ‘Kaiju’ and ‘Robot’, in order to expand his horizons sufficiently, as this list includes neither a Robot (giant at that) or guy in a big rubber suit.

    Be sure to pick up some souvenir goat garter while in Almada sir.

    • Bartleby says :

      You see Negadon, Tom? 40 minute CGI film about an old scientist in a giant robot fighting a monster from space, done in the style of old Toho movies. Not amazing, but pretty solid.

  16. Jarv says :

    Doesn’t the giant monster in The Host count tom?

    I know he’s not a robot monster, but he’s pretty big.

  17. Jarv says :

    I’m really looking forward to doing the European one next. I’m going to approach this geographically- except I’m going to cheat and do South America and Africa as one.

    I’ll finish with America (that’s going to be fucking hard) and then do the top 10.

    • Droid says :

      Have you seen enough Sth American or African movies? I doubt I’ve seen 10. Look at my response to this list as an example. Not a single one.

      • Droid says :

        Well, now that you’ve changed it, I have seen TGTBATW.

      • Jarv says :

        Yeah, I did chicken out, but TGTBATW is so good I think it deserves more love, and I can include Audition on it’s own- a compromise.

        By the way, I was a bit worried about the title for this- I’m not being racist, promise.

      • Droid says :

        I don’t find it racist, but unless it’s blatant racism I am usually difficult to offend. Wait for the over-sensitive liberal PC cock gobbling yanks to arrive and then guage their reaction.

  18. Jarv says :

    I’m including Mexico in South America, and I have seen quite a lot.

    Really, though It’s so I can include Y tu mama Tambien, City of God, Tsotsi, Maria Full of Grace and a few others.

  19. Droid says :

    Fair enough. I’ve only seen Y tu mama and CoG.

  20. Jarv says :

    Tsotsi is a fucking good film as well- worth looking up.

  21. Jarv says :

    Also, Mrs. Jarv is fluent in Spanish and likes to watch Spanish Langauge films to “practice” so I do see lots of strange things.

    • Droid says :

      Makes sense. I saw quite a few spanish flicks when I was with my ex.

      • Jarv says :

        Not to mention that she is half Brazilian and likes to pretend she’s doing it to keep up with her “roots”.

        I personally don’t believe this.

      • Droid says :

        aaaah… a portuguese connection!!!!!! Next you’ll be telling me you’ve got a “pet” goat, you bastard!

      • Jarv says :

        Funnily enough, her dad thinks that the Portuguese are peasants and that European Portuguese is a language for morons, so he had her learn Spanish instead when she was growing up

  22. just pillow talk says :

    Great list Jarv. I haven’t seen Battle Royale, Host, Audition, nor The Good, the Bad, and the Weird though.

    I’m very happy to see that Daisy was ranked so high. I think that is a brilliant film, and the one that resonated the most with me from all the flicks Hawaiian sent out. Completely threw me off guard with it, and a movie that I would actually call beautiful.

    And I agree with you on Sympathy for Mr. Vengeance. It’s my favorite of the trilogy, slightly edging out Oldboy.

    I certainly love Chocolate, but I would have put either Ong Bak 2 or The Protector on the list, from a pure action stand point.

    And since I didn’t see the ones mentioned above, I would have The Warlords, Mongol, Invisible Target, and A Bittersweet Life instead.

    • Jarv says :

      I still haven’t seen Ong Bak 2. I put chocolate in because it’s funny watching an autistic girl beat people up, not to mention that she moves like quicksilver.

      Warlords, Mongol, IT and ABL are all excellent, but I don’t think as good as the ones I put in.

  23. koutchboom says :

    Has anyone seen Big Bang Love, Juvenile A???

    Miike’s favorite/most personal film?

    YEah what the fuck was that about?

    • Jarv says :

      I’ve given up trying to work Miike out.

      He’s fucking nuts. Only explanation.

      What made me give up was when I discovered that he provided some of the semen for Ichi.

  24. koutchboom says :

    EVERYONE MOST SEE The Good, the Bad, and the Weird. Make this an important thing to do this week.

  25. koutchboom says :

    I may do a best asian list of the decade. But I think most of them would be the same from this list. And I haven’t seen as many as Bart. Though there is one or two that no ones mentioned that I think need to be mentioned.

  26. Jarv says :

    Go for it.

    • koutchboom says :

      Well I need to see one movie first. Because I’m pretty sure I’m gonna like it a lot before I do the list. I’ll try to watch it this weekend. Its on Netfliks instant view.

  27. Hawaiian Organ Donor says :

    You’re welcome for the movies Jarv. I’m just so damned pleased that everyone enjoys Daisy as much as I do. For all the big name Asian movies that make waves over here, I just never understood how that one didn’t make a splash. It’s Hollywood enough that I think European and American audiences would eat it up.

    • Jarv says :

      I can’t thank you enough, mate-

      Daisy didn’t even reach the pool here, as it hasn’t got a release of any description. Along with the absolute boycott Lionsgate are throwing Fierce People, this really makes me wonder what the fuck they are doing.

    • Jarv says :

      Also mate, I saw your comment in fat town- 2009 has indeed been an utterly shit year for you. Hopefully 2010 will be much better, new decade, new start and all that.

      Have you seen baader-meinhoff yet?

  28. Continentalop says :

    Good list. Battle Royale was my #1 film of the decade, any country. Great film IMO.

    But are you going to do Best Films of the Middle East? Because in the early part of the decade, Iranian films were the best in the world. 2 were on my top 10 list, The Circle and Day I Became a Woman, and they made a bunch of other damn smart movies (many of them banned in Iran): Blackboard, Time of Drunken Horses, Khandahar, Baran, and the films of Abbas Kiarostami, Ten and Ten At Ten. If you haven’t seen them Jarv, check them out.

    • koutchboom says :

      Yeah I was thinking about that. Asia covers a HUGE territory. You have to include Bollywood in there (though lets be honest, none of them would make the top ten). As well as Russia.

      • Continentalop says :

        You, some might. I haven’t seem them but I hear there have been a couple really awesome Indian gangster/crime movies the last couple of years. Appearently with no singing or dancing either.

      • Jarv says :

        I’m including Russia in Europe. If that isn’t cheating.

        Anyhow- I fucking detest Bollywood.

    • Bartleby says :

      Conti, I was debating that with my list…I originally had Color of Paradise and a few others in the Asian list and then removed it. My plan is to do an best foreign language films in addition to the asian one. I’ve seen so many specifically asian films that it could be its own category. Iran and Russia do fall in the gap there but it was hard to include them, because they were so disparate to the rest. Then again,

    • lord bronco says :

      I mentioned this in my top 10 list-The Middle East is figuring out they do have tales to tell-and I mentioned My Father, My Son (Babum v Oglum) from Turkey.

      It *can* be watched on youtube free of charge, but has no subtitles, which might be pushing the audience to far to understand exactly whats going on. Best drama of the decade, hands down.

      Peresopololis as a possible mention as well.

      also, Nefes from Turkey again. The Saving Private Ryan/ band of brothers made on the Iraq border by Turks-I’m killing myself to see this war flick.

      Could go on-but that’s all I’ve got.

    • Jarv says :

      I haven’t seen enough, to be honest.

  29. ThereWolf says :

    Good one, Jarv.

    I, too, have ‘Daisy’ battling for a place in my ‘Top 10’. In fact, now you’ve done it I think I’ll let it go. So long as it’s on somebody’s list… Shit, that film broke my heart.

    I’ve seen half of those. To be honest, the martial arts stuff (Chocolate) just wears me down. I appreciate the technical aspect, the choreography, the physicality. But, one fight after another… my mind starts to wander.

    I enjoyed TGTB&TW, Red Cliff is immense and The Host is top fun. I’d also mention Invisible Target, The Chaser & The Guard Post.

  30. tombando says :

    Jarv–here’s a REAL challenge for ya-10 best WALES movies. And no–you’re not gettin’ around it by tossing in any non-Welch version of Moby Dick. Sorry no.

  31. herr milflover says :

    ………the hell?

    I really havent been paying attention the last few months it seems.
    I’ve been busy with work and shit, so I barely go on aintitgingerbeard’s site anymore, mostly because Twitch doesnt seem to update there as much and has been deserted by the COC… the gang has been scattered all over the place now. The Bale crew’s doing fine, but MyMavra seems to be on life support (what’s up with Mav? she doesnt seem to be around anywhere from what I can tell), and now I just found this site, and there’s Cinematropolis too? Shit you guys have been keeping busy! Are you sure you all really have day jobs haha?

    I’ve always been more of a fringe member of the COC and it likely wont change, but I’m glad to see you’ve all been keeping the COC spirit alive in new places. Keep up the excellent work fellas! I’ll try to catch up once in a while.

    Cheers!

    • Jarv says :

      Wotcha Milf,

      More the merrier. Feel free to join in whenever.

      We are slackers on an epic scale, it is true.

    • Bartleby says :

      Milf… the basic skinny:

      MyMavra is now sans Mavra, and the rest of us as well. I think Herb’s pretty much it over there now. I haven’t visited, so I don’t know if new content is going up or not.

      You are more than welcome to post stuff here. Let us know, we can get you onboard as a contributor.

      If you are interested in a writing gig at Cinematropolis, waltz over there and shoot me an email. I’m looking for people who want to help out in that fashion. http://www.cinematropolis.wordpress.com

  32. Jarv says :

    Wales?

    No thanks.

  33. Jarv says :

    Droid certainly is an old dirty bastard

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