10/10: Japanese Breakfast

Michelle Zauner, the musician behind Japanese Breakfast, whose new album Jubilee comes out June 4, and author of the new memoir Crying in H Mart, out April 20, shares her ten favorite films from the last ten years.

(in no particular order)

1. The Handmaiden (Park Chan-wook, 2016) One of the most visually compelling movies I’ve ever seen. The composition of the wides in particular is just gorgeous. In a league of its own.

2. Burning (Lee Chang-dong, 2018) What a beautiful film. Some of the most captivating performances I’ve ever seen. Jeon Jong-seo’s topless slow dance in the sunset is so haunting and vulnerable. Also Steve Yeun is just the GOAT.

3. Parasite (Bong Joon-ho, 2019) I know I have three Korean films on here but I don’t care. This movie is just flawless, an auteur firing on all cylinders, operating at the peak of his craft. I watched Parasite take the Oscar, drinking somewhere in Brooklyn, and I immediately tried to buy the whole bar shots. Luckily my friend intervened and the two of us just got very, very drunk and I was very, very happy.

4. The Skin I Live In (Pedro Almodóvar, 2011) This was actually one of my first introductions to Almodóvar and remains one of my favorites. I saw it in theaters at the Ritz in Philly and I was on the edge of my seat the entire time.

5. Holy Motors (Leos Carax, 2012) A visual wonder, so eerie and distinct.

6. Mad Max: Fury Road (George Miller, 2015) God. This movie. Just so badass in every way. I don’t even know how to qualify my feelings for it. Like the best anime came to life. I love it so much.

7. The Meyerowitz Stories (Noah Baumbach, 2017) Noah Baumbach is one of my favorite contemporary directors. His style of writing really hits a nerve in me. His characters are all so flawed and real. The Meyerowitz Stories is one of my favorites, a criminally underrated film. It’s so hilarious and so sad. Adam Sandler is amazing. I wish he was my dad.

8. A Separation (Asghar Farhadi, 2011) This film has stayed with me for a long time. It is so complex and honestly horrifying how our worlds can become so gnarled and twisted into one another’s, even in the absence of ill intentions.

9. Phantom Thread (Paul Thomas Anderson, 2017) I feel like a bit of a traitor because The Master has been my favorite PT Anderson film for so long, but having watched Phantom Thread fairly recently, I had to include it. Seeing Vicky Krieps go toe-to-toe with DDL and bring such a strong performance to a subtle, complex character was a delight. Also the sweater DDL wears on their Swiss honeymoon is unparalleled.

10. The Farewell (Lulu Wang, 2019) I got to attend The Farewell’s NY premiere in Chinatown and I was completely blown away. Lulu Wang is such a special, nuanced director, especially the ways in which she wields silence and pacing. I found this film so moving and personal, with so many poetic, cinematic moments.

Michelle Zauner’s new book, Crying in H Mart, is available April 20. Japanese Breakfast’s new album, Jubilee, comes out June 4.

10/10 is an ongoing series in which we ask cinephiles to name their ten favorite films from the last ten years (currently, between 2011 and 2021).