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Yearly Roundup – 1971

Posted by martinteller on July 9, 2012

I said I would be selecting years randomly, but I’m deliberately starting with 1971.  One, because it’s the year I was born.  And two, because it’s kind of a crap year for me, movie-wise, and nothing on this list is a “spoiler” for my top 100.

Because this is the year of my glorious birth, this post has been included in The Movie Waffler’s Blogathon The Year I Made Contact.  Please check it out and see what other folks have to say about the movies that came out when they were born!

The Cream of the Crop

Stan Brakhage’s The Act of Seeing With One’s Own Eyes is the only film I would call truly “great” for 1971.  A powerful meditation on the physicality of death, it asks many questions without uttering a word.


Slightly Less Creamy, But Still Tasty

Brakhage had a strong year, with Deus Ex and Sexual Meditation: Room With View being particularly intriguing shorts.  To be honest, I’ve cooled a bit on A Clockwork Orange in recent years, but there’s no denying it was a longtime favorite of mine and is hugely influential.  Two-Lane Blacktop is mighty fine and Malpertuis is a tasty morsel of oddness.

Update 3/18/14: I would now add Out 1: noli me tangere and A New Leaf to the “Slightly Less Creamy” list.


Varying Degrees of Like

The Abominable Dr. Phibes
Calcutta 71
Deep End
The Emigrants
Four Nights of a Dreamer
The French Connection
Get Carter
The Go-Between
Godzilla vs. Hedorah
Harold and Maude
Johnny Got His Gun
Land of Silence and Darkness
McCabe & Mrs. Miller
The Mephisto Waltz
Mon oncle Antoine
Murmur of the Heart
Straw Dogs
Sympathy for the Underdog
Szerelem (Love)
Vanishing Point


Varying Degrees of Hate

200 Motels
Punishment Park
Le Region Centrale
The Touch
W.R.: Mysteries of the Organism


Some Notable Films In The Middle

A Bay of Blood
The Ceremony
Daughters of Darkness
Death in Venice
The Devils
Diamonds Are Forever
Dirty Harry
Duck, You Sucker
Emperor Tomato Ketchup
Fata Morgana
The Garden of the Finzi-Continis
The Hospital
The Last Picture Show
Let’s Scare Jessica to Death
Minnie and Moskowitz
Play Misty for Me
THX 1138
Two English Girls
Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory


Uncharted Territory

The Andromeda Strain, Beware of a Holy Whore, Carnal Knowledge, The Clowns, The Decameron, Demons, Dolgie provody, Don’t Deliver Us From Evil, Fiddler on the Roof, Interview, Klute, Lizard in a Woman’s Skin, Macbeth (Polanski), The Omega Man, The Panic in Needle Park, The Sheriff, Sweet Sweetback’s Baadasssss Song, Taking Off, The Telephone Book, Throw Away Your Books Rally in the Streets

7 Responses to “Yearly Roundup – 1971”

  1. JamDenTel said

    Carnal Knowledge and Fiddler on the Roof are both excellent. The Andromeda Strain is well-intentioned, but dull. Polanski’s Macbeth looks okay, as does Klute, and I’ve heard mostly praise for Sunday Bloody Sunday.

    • None of those are on my immediate to-do list, but I will keep your comments in mind. Mostly I want to see A New Leaf and Minnie & Moskowitz.

      • JamDenTel said

        I’m quite intrigued by A New Leaf as well; I doubt the original three-hour version will ever be made available, but I’m intrigued enough by Elaine May as a writer/director to seek it out.

  2. Jessica said

    A lot of films here I haven’t seen. A Clockwork Orange is the given number one for me. Duel is high up too, even though it’s been ages since I watched it. Maybe I love the concept more than the actual movie.
    I’m not keen on Bananas. I just never liked the slapstick in the very early Allen movies all that much.

    • Yes, that’s why Bananas sits in the middle for me. There are some really funny, smart gags… but a lot of dumb ones too. It was one of my favorites as a child, which tells you something about the level of humor. Duel is one I haven’t seen for a long, long time.

  3. I added you to the blogathon. Can you add this link to your post so readers can find the other participants?

    Cheers 🙂

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