Best of 2011 ... So Far

Salon offers up a mid-year list
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 5, 2011 12:37 PM CDT
Updated Jul 9, 2011 1:40 PM CDT
Justin Vernon of Bon Iver performs during the 2009 Lollapalooza Music Festival at Grant Park on August 7, 2009 in Chicago.   (Getty Images)
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(Newser) – Now that we're more than halfway through 2011, the Salon staff compiled the best books, movies, music, and TV of the year so far. Among its recommendations:

  • Film: Terrence Malick's The Tree of Life is quite good—but Lee Chang-dong's Poetry, about a 66-year-old woman who may have Alzheimer's, is a masterpiece. Another surprising inclusion: Matthew McConaughey-vehicle The Lincoln Lawyer, directed by Brad Furman.
  • Books: You'd never know The Pale King, David Foster Wallace's third and last novel, was actually unfinished at the time of his death and pieced together by his longtime editor. Also worth checking out: novelist Andre Dubus III's memoir, Townie.

  • TV: HBO's Game of Thrones wasn't taken seriously by critics at first, but the George RR Martin adaptation proved more than worthwhile. If you're more into police than period pieces, try TNT's Southland.
  • Music: Adele's 21 is timeless. Also worth your time: Anna Calvi's self-titled debut, and Bon Iver's self-titled follow-up album.
Click for the complete list, which goes beyond the aforementioned categories into Internet classics as well (Natalie Portman mashup, anyone?).

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