When December rolls around, it’s standard operating procedure for critics and cinephiles to release their “best movies of the year” lists. While these can be perfunctory, Indiewire film critic (and former A.V. Club contributor) David Ehrlich takes a drastically different approach with his self-edited “The 25 Best Films Of 2016: A Video Countdown.” Not only does Ehrlich weigh in on the year’s best movies, making some unexpected choices along the way (including Beyoncé’s Lemonade), he does so in a way that is artistically compelling on its own. This is a sweeping, 13-minute montage that blends music and images together in ways that are witty, inspiring, and even poignant.
Most surprisingly, considering he’s a professional film critic, Ehrlich resists the temptation to add even a word of his own narration to this video, which includes films such as Jackie, Moonlight, and Kubo And The Two Strings. As in most montage-style videos, music plays a crucial role in this countdown. Here, Ehrlich has added another twist: The songs he uses are all prominently used in other movies from 2016. When it’s time to show clips from the documentary Weiner, for instance, Erlich opts for The Lonely Island’s “I’m So Humble” from Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping. The funniest juxtaposition may be when George Michael’s “Faith,” as heard in Keanu, is used to underscore some moments from Martin Scorsese’s Silence.