Year-End Lists

Notable, browsable lists of the year's best music, movies, books, and TV shows. Year-end lists are fingerprints; aggregate statistics are smudges. Therefore, we make no tallies. Follow the link for each list to see essential commentary from its authors, at the source.

2011 Movies

J Hoberman: Personal Best Films of 2011

19 December 2011

J Hoberman: 10 Favorite Films of 2011, plus 2, as published in The Village Voice [see also 2017, 2016, 2015, 2014, 2012, and the The Village Voice Critic’s Poll 2011]

[as chosen for the indieWIRE poll]

[as chosen for the indieWIRE poll]

NOTE: Except for the additional documentary and undistributed lists, we’ve favored Hoberman’s selections as published in The Village Voice over his slightly different selections found in the indieWIRE poll; the latter has tighter restrictions that made the Marclay, Jacobs, Haynes, and Hark films ineligible, thus making room for Certified Copy in the top ten.

[see also 2019, 2018, 2017, 2016, 2015, 2014, 2012]

  1. The ClockChristian Marclay
  2. A Dangerous MethodDavid Cronenberg
  3. MelancholiaLars von Trier
  4. Mysteries of LisbonRaoul Ruiz
  5. AuroraCristi Puiu
  6. Seeking the Monkey KingKen Jacobs
  7. To Die Like a ManJoão Pedro Rodrigues
  8. Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past LivesApichatpong Weerasethakul
  9. HugoMartin Scorsese
  10. J. EdgarClint Eastwood
  11. United Red ArmyKôji Wakamatsu
  12. Mildred PierceTodd Haynes

Michael Phillips: 10 Best Movies of 2011

19 December 2011

Michael Phillips: 10 Best Movies of 2011, as published by The Chicago Tribune

[see also 2019, 2018, 2017, 2016, 2015, 2014, 2012]

  1. PoetryLee Chang-dong
  2. MoneyballBennett Miller
  3. Certified CopyAbbas Kiarostami
  4. The DescendantsAlexander Payne
  5. The InterruptersSteve James
  6. Guy and Madeline on a Park BenchDamien Chazelle
  7. A SeparationAsghar Farhadi
  8. The Tree of LifeTerrence Malick
  9. Tinker Tailor Soldier SpyTomas Alfredson
  10. WeekendAndrew Haigh

Dennis Cooper: Favorite Films of 2011

19 December 2011

Dennis Cooper: Favorite Films of 2011

[see also 2019, 2017, 2016, 2015, 2013, 2012]

  1. The Tree of LifeTerrence Malick
  2. The ClockChristian Marclay
  3. BelovedChristophe Honoré
  4. Any EverRyan Trecartin
  5. The Turin HorseBéla Tarr & Agnes Hranitzky
  6. DriveNicolas Winding Refn
  7. 20 CigarettesJames Benning
  8. Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past LivesApichatpong Weerasethakul
  9. Outside SatanBruno Dumont
  10. TabloidErrol Morris

IndieWire Poll: Best Films of 2011

19 December 2011

IndieWire Poll: Best Films of 2011 [as voted by 162 “critics, bloggers and other tastemakers from around the world”] [See IndieWire for full, browsable results and ballots.]

[see also 2019, 2018, 2017, 2016, 2015, 2014, 2013, 2012]

  1. The Tree of LifeTerrence Malick
  2. MelancholiaLars von Trier
  3. A SeparationAsghar Farhadi
  4. DriveNicolas Winding Refn
  5. Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past LivesApichatpong Weerasethakul
  6. Certified CopyAbbas Kiarostami
  7. Mysteries of LisbonRaoul Ruiz
  8. HugoMartin Scorsese
  9. MargaretKenneth Lonergan
  10. Meek’s CutoffKelly Reichardt
  11. ShameSteve McQueen
  12. The DescendantsAlexander Payne
  13. The ArtistMichel Hazanavicius
  14. Take ShelterJeff Nichols
  15. Martha Marcy May MarleneSean Durkin
  16. A Dangerous MethodDavid Cronenberg
  17. Tinker Tailor Soldier SpyTomas Alfredson
  18. We Need to Talk About KevinLynne Ramsay
  19. Film SocialismeJean-Luc Godard
  20. WeekendAndrew Haigh
  21. PoetryLee Chang-dong
  22. Nostalgia for the LightPatricio Guzmán
  23. The InterruptersSteve James
  24. The Skin I Live InPedro Almodóvar
  25. Midnight in ParisWoody Allen

Film Comment: 50 Best Released Films of 2011

16 December 2011

Film Comment: 50 Best Released Films of 2011 [poll of over 120 critics and film journalists]

[see also 2019, 2018, 2017, 2016, 2015, 2014, 2013, 2012]

  1. The Tree of LifeTerrence Malick
  2. Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past LivesApichatpong Weerasethakul
  3. MelancholiaLars von Trier
  4. A SeparationAsghar Farhadi
  5. A Dangerous MethodDavid Cronenberg
  6. Mysteries of LisbonRaoul Ruiz
  7. Certified CopyAbbas Kiarostami
  8. Meek’s CutoffKelly Reichardt
  9. HugoMartin Scorsese
  10. PoetryLee Chang-dong
  11. Film SocialismeJean-Luc Godard
  12. Le HavreAki Kaurismäki
  13. The Autobiography of Nicolae CeauşescuAndrei Ujica
  14. Le quattro volteMichelangelo Frammartino
  15. The DescendantsAlexander Payne
  16. Nostalgia for the LightPatricio Guzmán
  17. A Brighter Summer DayEdward Yang
  18. Midnight in ParisWoody Allen
  19. Take ShelterJeff Nichols
  20. MargaretKenneth Lonergan
  21. ShameSteve McQueen
  22. DriveNicolas Winding Refn
  23. Cave of Forgotten DreamsWerner Herzog
  24. Tinker Tailor Soldier SpyTomas Alfredson
  25. To Die Like a ManJoão Pedro Rodrigues
  26. The InterruptersSteve James
  27. The ArtistMichel Hazanavicius
  28. Tuesday, After ChristmasRadu Muntean
  29. AuroraCristi Puiu
  30. WeekendAndrew Haigh
  31. The Skin I Live InPedro Almodóvar
  32. City of Life and DeathLu Chuan
  33. ContagionSteven Soderbergh
  34. Of Gods and MenXavier Beauvois
  35. Martha Marcy May MarleneSean Durkin
  36. BridesmaidsPaul Feig
  37. The TripMichael Winterbottom
  38. MoneyballBennett Miller
  39. The ArborClio Barnard
  40. The FutureMiranda July
  41. IncendiesDenis Villeneuve
  42. Super 8JJ Abrams
  43. United Red ArmyKôji Wakamatsu
  44. Road to NowhereMonte Hellman
  45. TabloidErrol Morris
  46. Rise of the Planet of the ApesRupert Wyatt
  47. TerriAzazel Jacobs
  48. J. EdgarClint Eastwood
  49. Jane EyreCary Joji Fukunaga
  50. PinaWim Wenders

Nick Schager: Top 10 Films of 2011

16 December 2011

Nick Schager: Top 10 Films of 2011 [also a participant in Slant Magazine’s round-up]

[see also 2018, 2017, 2015, 2014, 2013, 2012]

  1. The Tree of LifeTerrence Malick
  2. Certified CopyAbbas Kiarostami
  3. A SeparationAsghar Farhadi
  4. PoetryLee Chang-dong
  5. Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past LivesApichatpong Weerasethakul
  6. Tuesday, After ChristmasRadu Muntean
  7. Nostalgia for the LightPatricio Guzmán
  8. Foreign PartsVerena Paravel & J.P. Sniadecki
  9. Meek’s CutoffKelly Reichardt
  10. BellflowerEvan Glodell

Ed Gonzalez: Top 10 Films of 2011

16 December 2011

Ed Gonzalez: Top 10 Films of 2011 [also a participant in Slant Magazine’s round-up]

[see also 2019, 2018, 2017, 2012]

  1. Certified CopyAbbas Kiarostami
  2. A Brighter Summer DayEdward Yang
  3. Nostalgia for the LightPatricio Guzmán
  4. MargaretKenneth Lonergan
  5. TomboyCéline Sciamma
  6. PolytechniqueDenis Villeneuve
  7. The Tree of LifeTerrence Malick
  8. A SeparationAsghar Farhadi
  9. Leap YearAnand Tucker
  10. In the FamilyPatrick Wang

MSN: Top 10 Movies of 2011

16 December 2011

MSN Entertainment [aka MSN Movies]: Top 10 Movies of 2011

  1. MelancholiaLars von Trier
  2. The Tree of LifeTerrence Malick
  3. The DescendantsAlexander Payne
  4. Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past LivesApichatpong Weerasethakul
  5. Tinker Tailor Soldier SpyTomas Alfredson
  6. Certified CopyAbbas Kiarostami
  7. A Dangerous MethodDavid Cronenberg
  8. The ArtistMichel Hazanavicius
  9. HugoMartin Scorsese
  10. Meek’s CutoffKelly Reichardt

Total Film: 50 Best Movies of 2011

16 December 2011

Total Film: 50 Best Movies of 2011 [based on UK release date]

  1. DriveNicolas Winding Refn
  2. The Tree of LifeTerrence Malick
  3. Black SwanDarren Aronofsky
  4. Blue ValentineDerek Cianfrance
  5. Tinker Tailor Soldier SpyTomas Alfredson
  6. Kill ListBen Wheatley
  7. Animal KingdomDavid Michôd
  8. A SeparationAsghar Farhadi
  9. BridesmaidsPaul Feig
  10. We Need to Talk About KevinLynne Ramsay
  11. The GuardJohn Michael McDonagh
  12. Source CodeDuncan Jones
  13. True GritJoel & Ethan Coen
  14. NedsPeter Mullan
  15. The FighterDavid O. Russell
  16. The King’s SpeechTom Hooper
  17. The Skin I Live InPedro Almodóvar
  18. TyrannosaurPaddy Considine
  19. Super 8JJ Abrams
  20. Take ShelterJeff Nichols
  21. SennaAsif Kapadia
  22. The ArtistMichel Hazanavicius
  23. HugoMartin Scorsese
  24. SubmarineRichard Ayoade
  25. SnowtownJustin Kurzel
  26. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2David Yates
  27. 127 HoursDanny Boyle
  28. MelancholiaLars von Trier
  29. Rise of the Planet of the ApesRupert Wyatt
  30. Attack the BlockJoe Cornish
  31. MoneyballBennett Miller
  32. The Adventures of TintinSteven Spielberg
  33. ThorKenneth Branagh
  34. ArriettyHiromasa Yonebayashi & Gary Rydstrom
  35. The InterruptersSteve James
  36. X-Men: First ClassMatthew Vaughn
  37. Meek’s CutoffKelly Reichardt
  38. ContagionSteven Soderbergh
  39. WarriorGavin O’Connor
  40. How I Ended This SummerAleksey Popogrebskiy
  41. Crazy, Stupid, LoveGlenn Ficarra and John Requa
  42. 13 AssassinsTakashi Miike
  43. The Ides of MarchGeorge Clooney
  44. The HelpTate Taylor
  45. 50/50Jonathan Levine
  46. WeekendAndrew Haigh
  47. Project NimJames Marsh
  48. Essential KillingJerzy Skolimowski
  49. The Lincoln LawyerBrad Furman
  50. The Girl with the Dragon TattooDavid Fincher

Noel Murray: Best Films of 2011

16 December 2011

Noel Murray: Best Films of 2011 [also a participant in The A.V. Club’s round-up]

[see also 2019, 2018, 2017, 2016, 2014, 2012]

  1. Martha Marcy May MarleneSean Durkin
  2. HugoMartin Scorsese
  3. A SeparationAsghar Farhadi
  4. The FutureMiranda July
  5. WeekendAndrew Haigh
  6. TabloidErrol Morris
  7. Certified CopyAbbas Kiarostami
  8. TerriAzazel Jacobs
  9. The Tree of LifeTerrence Malick
  10. RangoGore Verbinski
  11. Tuesday, After ChristmasRadu Muntean
  12. The ArborClio Barnard
  13. Winnie the PoohStephen J. Anderson and Don Hall
  14. Project NimJames Marsh
  15. Super 8JJ Abrams