Old Favorites Flavorwire Staffers Revisited in 2015


Ah, time. Its inexorable march, its ability to turn former old reality TV hosts into current presidential hopefuls (and then into buttplugs), heroes into bigots, Star Wars into… more Star Wars. As we head into 2016, and as the world around us continues to change and morph into buttplugs and things that aren’t buttplugs, Flavorwire staffers are taking a moment to look back at past pieces of culture that may objectively be the same, but may have become more potent through perception over time — or conversely, that have stayed refreshingly static. Click through this post to see the best things from past years Flavorwire staffers revisited in 2015.

Possession (dir. Andrzej Zulawski)

Andrzej Zulawski’s Possession and all its bizarre, hysterical, and astonishing images and emotions. Revisiting the film, it was quickly clear that I have never fully recovered from Isabelle Adjani’s thrashing, howling, traumatic performance, nor do I want to. — Alison Nastasi, Weekend Editor

World of Warcraft

This is very difficult for me to admit, but I am a recently relapsed World of Warcraft addict, thanks in-part to the recent, not-terrible trailer for the upcoming World of Warcraft movie. I’d not played in five or so years, and so it’s basically a whole new game in the same, heavily addictive skin. Find me prancing around Azeroth at 7 a.m. before work and at 10 p.m. before bed, my boyfriend in the background, scowling, as my Worgen druid shoots moonrays at some unsuspecting plantman. — Shane Barnes, Associate Editor

The Jesus Lizard — Goat

Music for getting shit done. (Also: David Yow’s cooking web series is one of the best things on the Internet.) — Tom Hawking, Deputy Editor

Velvet Goldmine (dir. Todd Haynes)

I saw Velvet Goldmine for perhaps the 100th time — though only the third time in a theater! — just after Thanksgiving, at the Film Society of Lincoln Center’s Haynes retrospective. And you know what? I still caught something new in what is widely, and wrongly, thought to be the director’s weakest film. There’s a whole, subtle thread in there about how the people who pioneer (artistic) movements look to the future, while those who take up its mantle increasingly idealize the past. Huh. — Judy Berman, Editor-in-Chief

Chungking Express (dir. Wong Kar-Wai)

We watched this Wong Kar-Wai classic again this year to share it with a loved one, and it’s lost none of its charm. The homage to Hollywood through the lens of a Chinese auteur is beautifully shot, with a slow-shutter speed technique that creates a visual palette recalling artful brush strokes of light. It’s broken into two separate romantic narratives, linked by the same small lunch counter. But it’s the second that gives the film it’s warm fuzzy charm, and one of the more inspired syncs of “California Dreamin’” committed to celluloid. Flavorwire favorite Chairlift seems to agree; they riffed on the aesthetic in the video for their single “Romeo.” — Matthew Ismael Ruiz, Music Editor

Emily of New Moon by L.M. Montgomery

I wrote about re-reading L.M. Montgomery’s beautiful, passionate Emily of New Moon series, her lesser-known counterpart to the Anne of Green Gables novels. Many things we turn back to feel smaller or less meaningful over time. So it was a joy to revisit a staple of my youth and discover that its power hasn’t entirely diminished, and still has magic. — Sarah Seltzer, Editor-at-Large

Ibsen’s Ghosts

Ibsen’s Ghosts — with its haunting crescendo and mining of Victorian sociosexual shame — had for long been one of my favorite plays, and I was happy/inevitably disturbed to get to revisit it through Richard Eyre’s production at the Brooklyn Academy of Music. It led me to think about some of the themes I’d always found most compelling about the play (STDs as metaphors, in particular), and how cultural perceptions of those themes have changed through the centuries. On top of that, the production was visually arresting, casting the whole stage in fittingly ghostly lighting (with translucent walls likewise evoking the play’s title) until its chilling close, where a warm hue became so bright as to seem violent. Lesley Manville (Another Year) and Billy Howle tied it all together with magnetic performances as the play’s leads. — Moze Halperin, Associate Editor

The Muppets

No, not The Muppets, the terrible shadow of their former selves that I bailed on after suffering through its loathsome debut – I’m talking about the originals, the O.G. Muppets, which my toddler discovered this year and quickly decided were the best things ever. And she’s right; the jokes still land, the songs still stick (find me another ‘70s movie musical that matches the triple-play of “Movin’ Right Along,” “Can You Picture That,” and “The Rainbow Connection”), and the characters are as lovable as ever. And speaking of lovable, perhaps I should fine-tune this response to the more specific “My kid saying ‘wocka wocka’ like Fozzie Bear.” — Jason Bailey, Film Editor

Early Mad Men

Plenty of year-end lists have heaped (well-earned) praise upon the final season of America’s Favorite Media Studies Project. I’ll draw attention instead to the show as a whole, much of which I revisited in anticipation of its final half-season. My journey through Mad Men’s archive made me realize how remarkably consistent the series was, yet another accomplishment for Matthew Weiner to add to his long list; its characters and aesthetic couldn’t have been more different when the show started, yet season one introduces a show that knows exactly what it is and what it wants to do. Even season six, which I remembered as the weakest, maintains a level of quality that I miss — yes, even in these times of TV saturation — between knockouts like “The Flood.” — Alison Herman, TV Editor