2010: The Lists

2010 is over! There are some big films that I missed, but at some point I just have to stop chasing them down and lock-in my best of the year. I don’t want my life to turn into an exercise in ticking films off a checklist.

Anyway, I have become less and less enthused with Best of the Year lists. How can anyone see all the films let alone rank them? So below you will find not the “Best of the Year”, but my “Favorite Films of the Year”, as well as some other lists.

Stay tuned for my next post where I will give out my special awards for 2010! That will be much more fun than this, so check in again soon.

Films I wanted to see but didn’t:

4.3.2.1, A Film Unfinished, A Prophet, Alamar, And Everything Is Going Fine, Animal Kingdom, Another Year, Art of the Steal, Bear, Biutiful, Buried, Carlos, Chico & Rita, City Island, Double Take, Down Terrace, Enter the Void, Father of my Children, Fish Tank, Four Lions, Girl on the Train, Hereafter, How to Train your Dragon, Howl, I am Love, Illusionist, Ip Man 2, Kids Are All Right, Last Exorcism, Last Train Home, Let Me In, Life During Wartime, Looking For Eric, Lourdes, Marwencol, Micmacs, Monsters, Never Let Me Go, No One Knows about Persian Cats, Ondine, Rabbit Hole, Red, Red Riding Trilogy, Secret in Their Eyes, Secret Sunshine, Solitary Man, Somewhere, Sound of Noise, The American, The Eclipse, The Town, The Way Back, Tiny Furniture, Trash Humpers, Troll Hunter, Unthinkable, Vengeance, Vincere, White Material, Wild Grass, Youth in Revolt

Films I saw:

127 Hours, A Piece of Work, A Serbian Film, Batman: Under the Red Hood, Best Worst Movie, Black Swan, Catfish, Centurian, Chloe, Clash of the Titans, Cyrus, Daybreakers, Death at a Funeral, Dogtooth, Easy A, Exam, Exit Through the Gift Shop, Frozen, Ghost Writer, Girl Who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest, Girl Who Played With Fire, Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, Greenberg, Hot Tub Time Machine, I’m Still Here, Inception, Iron Man 2, Justice League: Crisis on Two Earths, Karate Kid, Kick-Ass, Killer Inside Me, King’s Speech, Kisses, Knight and Day, Leaves of Grass, Macgruber, Machete, Mother, OSS 117: Lost in Rio, Pirahna 3D, Please Give, Predators, Social Network, Scott Pilgrim vs. The World, Sex and the City 2, Shutter Island, Splice, Superman/Batman: Apocalypse, The Next Three Days, Toy Story 3, Tron: Legacy, True Grit, Unstoppable, Winter’s Bone, Wolfman, You Will Meet a Tall Dark Stranger

The bottom 4:

4) Clash of the Titans – A horribly directed CGI action film lacking any of the charm the original had.

3) Hot Tub Time Machine – A stupid story, yes, but it’s also full of horrible characters and lacking any basic feeling or emotion that a character-driven comedy must have. Please everyone just screams at each other in it.

2) Sex and the City 2 – I can’t begin to describe what is wrong with this film and the characters in it. I think the ending says it all. Just read this review.

1) A Serbian Film – Pointless and disgusting in every way. Read my full review.

My 12 Favorite Films of 2010

12) Exit Through the Gift Shop – Banksy, USAexit-through-the-gift-shopTrue or false (I say it’s true), it is a great behind the scenes look at an art world and the characters within.

11) 127 HoursDanny Boyle, USA127-hours2 I use the term “form and function” alot, but this film is a perfect combination of form and function. The inventive style matches the character and scenario and it never gets boring or goes over the top.

10) Greenberg – Noah Baumbach, USAgreenbergBen Stiller does a great job as the title character who doesn’t really have a place in the world, and both fails and succeeds at trying to find one.

9) Dogtooth – Giorgos Lanthimos, Greecedogtooth2A bizarre and entertaining commentary on parenting by a confident director. It is a pleasure to see something fresh and new.

8) Kick-AssMatthew Vaughn, UKkick-assMatthew Vaughn knows how to make films, and this shows off his talents and those of everyone involved. A wonderful indie film on a studio budget.

7) Mother – Joon-ho Bong, South KoreamotherIt’s a mystery that reveals information at just the right pace. Nothing feels forced because it’s anchored by a powerhouse performance by Hye-Ja Kim.

6) Winter’s Bone – Debra Granik, USAwinters-boneThe film brought me into a tight-knit community full of secrets, danger and a code of honor. Jennifer Lawrence showed me how to be strong and do what needs to be done.

5) Shutter Island – Martin Scorsese, USAshutter-islandAn old-school horror film in style, but full of real emotion and story. The last lines of dialog elevate the whole thing to something more than I realized.

4) The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo – Niel Arden Oplev, Swedengirl-with-the-dragon-tattooA great mystery that has characters so interesting that I cared what they were doing and I cared why they were doing it. And when things finally become clear, it all makes perfect sense.

3) The Ghost Writer – Roman Polanski, Franceghost-writer2A confidently directed piece that kept me in the film the entire time. The story is simple, but leaves room for some dynamite sequences of suspense and mystery.

2) Black Swan – Darren Aronofsky, USAblack-swan

If De Palma directed The Piano Teacher, this would be the film. It’s a full-bore horror movie that builds and builds to an operatic conclusion. The more I think about it the more I love it.

1) Inception – Christopher Nolan, USAinception21

It grabbed me from the opening and never let go. Great soundtrack, great effects, polished direction and the story built up to three different climaxes that happened simultaneously!  More importantly, I was invested in what happened to the characters because they had believable stories and real emotions. I know LCD didn’t like the last shot, but I thought it was perfect.


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