Film

Best of 2000

I've heard it more than once — the year was terrible for movies and TV, epitomized by the ascension of Survivor and Regis, the return of Demi Moore in Passion of Mind, the ridiculousness of Richard Gere in Autumn in New York. But our intrepid reviewers found reasons for joy amid the clutter, and indeed, many of these reasons are extraordinary — the release of Herk Harvey's Carnival of Souls on a Criterion Edition DVD, Darren Aronofsky's riveting Requiem for a Dream, the ongoing spectacle of Whitney Houston. Which leads us to conclude: there's always good stuff out there, you just have to be open to it. Except, perhaps, if you're trying to cast a countable vote in Florida.

On to the lists.

Director Spotlight: Alfred Hitchcock

Alfred Hitchcock helped to create the modern horror genre, the modern thriller, and the modern black comedy. He changed film, even as he was inventing new ways to approach it. Stay tuned through October as we present our collection of essays on the Master of Suspense.

Film

'Psycho': The Mother of All Horrors

Psycho stands out not only for being one of Alfred Hitchcock's greatest films, it is also one of his most influential. It has been a template and source material for an almost endless succession of later horror films, making it appropriate to identify it as the mother of all horror films.

Francesc Quilis
Film

The City Beneath: A Century of Los Angeles Graffiti (By the Book)

With discussions of characters like Leon Ray Livingston (a.k.a. "A-No. 1"), credited with consolidating the entire system of hobo communication in the 1910s, and Kathy Zuckerman, better known as the surf icon "Gidget", Susan A. Phillips' lavishly illustrated The City Beneath: A Century of Los Angeles Graffiti, excerpted here from Yale University Press, tells stories of small moments that collectively build into broad statements about power, memory, landscape, and history itself.

Susan A. Phillips
Books

The 10 Best Indie Pop Albums of 2009

Indie pop in 2009 was about all young energy and autumnal melancholy, about the rush you feel when you first hear an exciting new band, and the bittersweet feeling you get when your favorite band calls it quits.

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