Sunday, April 15, 2007

Rethinking "best of"

Sometimes I wonder about the practice of creating "best of" lists at the end of the year, as I find that by the middle of April that much of my lists from the previous December are almost null and void after four additional months of movie-watching and music-listening. I have also found that as I have grown as a blogger that my perspective on "best" has changed, and that many movies I listed in my "best of" were really just "favourites" from that year, and those are often two entirely different lists. So here, for your perusal, are my new suggestions for the Best Five Movies of each of the last three years, each of which includes any remaining "spoilers" to the list that might creep in once I finally watch them.

2004 Movies: Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, Incredibles, Shaun of the Dead, Sideways, Spider-Man 2 (Spoilers: Collateral, Closer, Hotel Rwanda)

2005 Movies: Brokeback Mountain, Capote, Good Night and Good Luck, Syriana, Walk the Line (Spoilers: Munich)

2006 Movies: Children of Men, The Departed, Pan’s Labyrinth, Stranger Than Fiction, The Prestige (Spoilers: United 93)

And now, for a quick revision of my Best of lists for music in the past three years. I have noticed that I am becoming increasingly aware of music nearer to its release date now, thus decreasing the likelihood of these lists changing in the future. I have also noticed that I have very disparate taste, and that it can be truly difficult to compare a hip-hop disc with a hardcore disc. Such is life. Here are my revised Top Ten CDs from each of the last three years, each with an honourable mention or two and maybe a spoiler or too as well.

2004 CDs: Blindside - About A Burning Fire; Demon Hunter - Summer of Darkness; Further Seems Forever - Hide Nothing; Keane - Hopes and Fears; Killers - Hot Fuss; Lovedrug - Pretend You’re Alive; Mute Math - Reset EP; Relient K - mmhmm; U2 - How To Dismantle An Atomic Bomb; Underoath - They're Only Chasing Safety

2005 CDs: Audioslave – Out of Exile; Blindside - The Great Depression; Coldplay - X&Y; David Crowder Band - A Collision; Demon Hunter - The Triptych; Mae - The Everglow; Moby - Hotel; Project 86 - …And The Rest Will Follow; Sufjan Stevens - Illinois; Thrice - Vheissu (HM: Death Cab For Cutie - Plans; Neverending White Lights; 4th Ave Jones - Stereo: The Evolution of HipRockSoul) (Spoilers: Bloc Party - Silent Alarm; Copeland - In Motion; Foo Fighters - In Your Honor)

2006 CDs: See the 2006 Year in Music review, since there have been no recent changes. (Spoilers: Copeland - Eat, Sleep, Repeat)

This suggests to me that I should actually time my Best of lists with Chinese New Year instead of our New Year, since I made fewer alterations to my 2006 picks than to previous years. But whatever happens in the future, I am a lot happier with these new picks than with those old ones - even if it was just for my own peace of mind. Thanks for indulging me!

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