This weekend's most critically acclaimed movie is Nebraska, a drama with a lot of Oscar buzz that happens to be entirely in black and white. If it were to win Best Picture, it would be the second of its kind in three years -- the first being The Artist.
Are we in a new era of colorless movies? Another favorite of this year is Frances Ha, which just arrived on DVD and Blu-ray this week. And then there are the popular 2013 indies Escape from Tomorrow and Much Ado About Nothing, the latter a Shakespeare adaptation from The Avengers director Joss Whedon.
Even if this were a renaissance time for black and white, the best modern movies in the format are from the 1990s, according to people we polled this week on Twitter. Unsurprisingly, the most common response to the question of what's the best black-and-white movie in the past 25 years was Steven Spielberg's Schindler's List, the last of this kind to be named Best Picture until last year.
Other popular choices were releases from a year later: Tim Burton's Ed Wood and Kevin Smith's Clerks. There are also the feature debuts of Darren Aronofsky and Christopher Nolan, respectively Pi and Following, but no mention of Woody Allen's Celebrity.
For movies that have come out in the 21st century, we received some love for the Coen brothers' The Man Who Wasn't There and foreign films The Turin Horse and Tabu. Two that should have come up are Anton Corbijn's Ian Curtis biopic Control and Steven Soderbergh's WWII throwback starring George Clooney, The Good German. Clooney did, however, get some recognition at least for his own black-and-white directorial effort, Good Night, and Good Luck.
Some other titles we'd like to throw into the mix of choices (or recommendations) include Frankenweenie, Duck Season, The White Ribbon, Coffee and Cigarettes, In the Soup, Shadows and Fog and the partly colored Pleasantville.
Here are the results of the poll (including runner-up mentions) followed by some of the tweeted responses below.
Schindler's List: 7
Tetsuo the Iron Man: 2
The Turin Horse: 2
Dead Man: 2
Ed Wood: 2
Good Night, and Good Luck: 2
The Human Centipede 2 (Full Sequence): 1
La Haine: 1
13 Tzameti: 1
The Man Who Wasn't There: 1
Man Bites Dog: 1
Sin City: 1
Heart of the World: 1
@thefilmcynic PI is my choice. MEMENTO is a strong answer. Hard to ignore SCHINDLER'S LIST, and I have a soft spot for the first TETSUO too.— Renn Brown (@RennBrown) November 14, 2013
@thefilmcynic And with all that said, I would say NEBRASKA --I assume the inspiration for the question-- ranks high among them as well.— Renn Brown (@RennBrown) November 14, 2013
@thefilmcynic LA HAINE, but hard to choose really.— Mona Nicoara (@monanicoara) November 14, 2013
@thefilmcynic I think Schindler's List, but want to throw a mention to Good Night and Good Luck, as well. Also Ed Wood.— Jandy (@faithx5) November 14, 2013
@thefilmcynic the Man Who Wasn't There, Dead Man, Man Bites Dog— justin robinson (@TheJSRobinson) November 14, 2013
@thefilmcynic Maybe I'm blanking on some here, but I'm actually really fond of Tetro. Really underrated.— Samuel W. (@TheatrOfTheMind) November 14, 2013
@thefilmcynic Oh yeah, forgot about Schindler...— Samuel W. (@TheatrOfTheMind) November 14, 2013
@thefilmcynic Goodnight and Good Luck too...— Samuel W. (@TheatrOfTheMind) November 14, 2013
@thefilmcynic feature: THE TURIN HORSE; short: HEART OF THE WORLD— Victor Morton (@vjmfilms) November 15, 2013