Spike Lee‘s Da 5 Bloods (Netflix) is the top vote-getter in a Best of 2020 critics poll from World of Reel‘s Jordan Ruimy. Lee’s memory-filled Vietnam drama edged out Eliza Hittman’s Never Rarely Sometimes Always and Leigh Whannell’s The Invisible Man in second and third place.
Was the nation’s recent cultural and political uprising (George Floyd protests, Black Lives Matter, a repressive response on Donald Trump‘s part) a factor in critics supporting Lee’s film, especially given Lee’s artful, montage-like editing that blends past and present turmoils? That’s my suspicion but you tell me.
Over 100 “film critics, journalists, bloggers and entertainment reporters” participated in the World of Reel poll. Lee’s war film tallied 48 votes, Never Rarely Sometimes Always got 42 votes, and The Invisible Man earned 37.
The other favorites are Bad Education (#4, 30 votes), The Assistant (#5, 30 votes), First Cow (#6, 30 votes), Bacurau (#7, 29 votes), The Vast of Night (#8, 26), Shirley (#9, 25 votes), Emma (#10, 16 votes), Vitalina Varela (#11, 11 votes), Beanpole (#12, 11 votes) and The King of Staten Island (#13, 11 votes)
Here’s a poll-focused discussion between Jordan and myself, recorded yesterday morning.
“HE’s Best of 2020 So Fqr” (posted on 7.9.20): Roman Polanski‘s J’Accuse (aka An Officer and a Spy), Judd Apatow and Pete Davidson‘s The King of Staten Island, Ladj Ly‘s Les Miserables, Rod Lurie‘s The Outpost, Diao Yinan‘s The Wild Goose Lake, Cory Finley and Mike Makowski‘s Bad Education, Gavin O’Connor and Ben Affleck‘s The Way Back, Spike Lee‘s Da 5 Bloods, Eliza Hittman’s Never Rarely Sometimes Always, Ken Loach‘s Sorry We Missed You, Leigh Whannell‘s The Invisible Man, Kelly Reichardt‘s First Cow.
Last March I wrote that J’Accuse, which may never be released here due to #MeToo and #TimesUp but which I finally saw that month, “has been crafted with absolute surgical genius…a lucid and exacting and spot-on retelling of an infamous episode of racial prejudice…a sublime atmospheric and textural recapturing of 1890s ‘belle epoque’ Paris, and such a meticulous, hugely engrossing reconstruction of the Dreyfus affair…a tale told lucidly…clue by clue, layer by layer. Pretty much a perfect film.”
Again, the mp3.