‘Aftersun’ and Best First Films of the 21st Century – Jordan Ruimy

This year’s 12th edition of the Scary Movies festival at Film at Lincoln Center premiered Ari Aster’s extended version of “Midsommar” this past Saturday.
A24 released a very bittersweet picture of filmmaker Charlotte Wells on that same resort vacation depicted in her debut film “Aftersun” (shown above).
“Aftersun,” which was released this past Friday, has an incredible 95 on Metacritic. I initially saw it at Cannes this past May, it was playing in the Critics Week sidebar section. I wrote in my capsule review that it was the best film debut of 2012.
IonCinema’s Eric Lavallée, a good friend of mine, thinks Wells’ “Aftersun” is one of the best debuts of the 21st century. A lot of critics seem to think that. He tweeted:
Add Charlotte Wells’ AFTERSUN to the 21st century’s masterwork directorial debuts w/ the likes of Steve McQueen’s Hunger (2008), Oppenheimer’s The Act of Killing (2012) & László Nemes’ Son of Saul (2015).
I agree, Nemes, Oppenheimer, and McQueen’s debut films were all once-in-a-lifetime achievements.
In fact, it’s very rare that a first film can really be as great as the ones mentioned above, I’d add, limiting myself to just 21st Century first films, 15 more: Todd Field’s “In the Bedroom,” Tony Gilroy’s “Michael Clayton,” Benh Zeitlin’s “Beasts of the Southern Wild,” Bennett Miller’s “Capote,” Trey Edward Shults’ “Krisha” Kenneth Lonergan’s “You Can Count On Me,” Ari Aster’s “Hereditary” Xavier Legrand’s “Custody,” Bo Burnham’s “Eight Grade,” Kogonada’s “Columbus,” Zachariahs Kunuk’s “Atanarjuat,” Greta Gerwig’s “Ladybird,” Miranda July’s “Me, You and Everyone We Know” and Jordan Peele’s “Get Out.”
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