PopMatters Picks:

The Best TV, Film, and DVD of 2005

By PopMatters Staff

4 January 2006

Fiction or non-fiction, censored, scorned or adored, we were captivated and seduced by 2005's offerings, from a surprise death in the new Harry Potter to the 'truth' of the afterlife in Mary Roach's Spook. In a list comprising the best graphic novels, short story collections, memoirs, and rants, here are the best of 2005, PopMatters-style
More War Stories: Best of 2005

It's not like violence is a new theme in movies. And yet, even acknowledging that cinema was conceived as a venue for the display of violence -- comic, dramatic, horrific, pornographic -- 2005's permutations provide notably acute commentary on the world beyond movies.

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12 Jan 2006 // 12:00 AM

Why 2K?

The most important music video of 2005 is Green Day's 'Wake Me Up When September Ends.' It offers a nuanced look at how the ongoing war and the past four years of U.S. politics have eroded the faith of many Americans in the values, spirit, and future direction of a country that calls itself 'the land of the free and the home of the brave.'

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A Lot of Damn Emoting: Best TV Performers of 2005

Space won't allow me to mention every worthy performance I saw this year. So I'm going to start throwing out names, confident that I will forget several people I meant to mention.

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Power (Dis)Chords: The Year in Rock Documentaries

All of the best rock docs I saw on DVD in 2005 illustrate how fame fucks things up.

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Spelling Doom: Movies in 2005

It wasn't a great movie year, though not for lack of trying. Looking over the year's releases, you see many with a great performance, a smart script, interesting themes, or that old and potentially damaging chestnut, good intentions. But why weren't more of them great?.

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Making the Crapfest Enjoyable: Best Performances 2005

Can good performance save a bad film? It depends on the film's degree of awfulness, but certainly, strong acting helps. It's one of the reasons I own a little movie called Serial Killing 101 (2004).

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The Year in Fear: Best Movies 2005

Many films in 2005 dealt explicitly with the effects of fear, reflecting a world where outrage and terror have stewed into perpetual anxiety. This year, comedy and horror movies were in meager supply, and dread seeped into every other type of film, from indie drama to summer blockbuster.

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DAuTeurs: The Year in Homemade Movies (on DVD)

Francis Ford Coppola got it half right. A decade or so ago, he opined that the film industry would soon be overrun by teenagers with portable cameras. These indie moviemakers, rebelling against the studio system, would use their backyards as back lots to make their own 'outsider' entertainment.

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The 20 Best Films of 2005

What is love? How does one become a superhero? Is violence something inherent inside you?

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The 20 Best TV Shows of 2005

Overall, not a bad year for an entertainment entity long written off as a cultural wasteland. There's some definitive new growth among the arid averageness.

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The 20 Best DVDs of 2005

The main reason why digital won the format wars was the ongoing desire to accept film as an art, not a commodity, and in return making discs that preserve and enhance the medium.

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//Mixed media

Because Blood Is Drama: Considering Carnage in Video Games and Other Media

// Moving Pixels

"It's easy to dismiss blood and violence as salacious without considering why it is there, what its context is, and what it might communicate.

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