1 KRISHA (Trey Edward Shults) This hilariously harrowing portrait of a family reunion ruined by an alcoholic relative and too many dogs is told with verve and lunacy and features a top-notch performance by Krisha Fairchild, the director’s own aunt. Other people’s hell can sometimes be so much fun.
2 TICKLED (David Farrier and Dylan Reeve) Hahahahaha! First you’ll chuckle watching this exceptional piece of investigative reporting, but then, once the shocking plot twists begin, you’ll choke on that laughter.
3 EVERYBODY WANTS SOME!! (Richard Linklater) The best accidentally gay movie ever made by a known heterosexual director features the most talented and sexy ensemble cast of the last decade.
4 ROAR (Noel Marshall) I finally got to see Tippi Hedren’s real-life snuff movie starring her entire family that was made in 1981 but not released in the US until 2015. Watch, slack-jawed, as Tippi is scalped and her daughter Melanie Griffith mauled by the wild-animal extras who turn out to be the real stars of this nutcase action film.
5 WIENER-DOG (Todd Solondz) The funniest dog movie since Godard’s Goodbye to Language. Nasty, blunt, rude, and full of hideous surprises.
6 ELLE (Paul Verhoeven) Do daughters of mass murderers like to get raped? In France they sometimes do, and only Isabelle Huppert could play this hetero-deviant, Claude-Chabrol-meets-Radley-Metzger character with feminist dignity. Isn’t she the best actress in the whole wide world?
7 JULIETA (Pedro Almodóvar) If Hitchcock had actually understood women, might he not have made this serious and absolutely stunning hellodrama about female longing and loneliness? Rossy de Palma is back, too. Yay!
8 LIKE CATTLE TOWARDS GLOW (Dennis Cooper and Zac Farley) Arty teenage death, Gallic rimming, and a maddening passion for punk penises make this Eric Rohmer–like porno a real French tickler for the fucked-up literary set.
9 VALLEY OF LOVE (Guillaume Nicloux) Yep, it’s her again. Isabelle Huppert and the fattest Gérard Depardieu you’ve ever seen team up as parents in Death Valley, searching for some kind of mystical message from their son who has just committed suicide. Even dead Pasolini would love this film.
10 A QUIET PASSION (Terence Davies) The grim curse of Emily Dickinson’s poetic talent has never been shown with such depressing clarity. If you can’t enjoy suffering along with her, you should be dead too.
John Waters has already left on an eighteen-city tour for his spoken-word show A John Waters Christmas.
This is a complimentary article. Subscribe to access the rest of the issue and our online archives.