Killer of Sheep (1977, Charles Burnett)

third viewing (first time in theater) screened at the IFC Center, New York NY IMDb YES YES YES YES - seeing it in the theater gave me shivers. To my mind, the best film ever made about what it feels like to be poor -- it even has Pasolini and Bunuel beat on that score with its unflinching look at living in a state of everyday horror. J. Hoberman calls this and Eraserhead the two greatest American independent films of the 70s, and I think the two films have a lot more in common than one would assume. Burnett's film is as weird, surreal and alienated as anything Lynch has done, with as vivid a cast of bizarro characters -- the one key thing that opposes him from Lynch is his basing his characters on real life people instead of distended genre types. This is the best film ever made to capture the spirit of blues music on celluloid -- the muddiness, the sorrow, the energy, the blindsingly simple genius of the blues. One of the greatest American films ever made, and therefore one of the greatest films period. #1 for 1977