Also, it should be noted that while we did have a great year of movies, nothing came close to my Children Of Men experience from 2006. Still love the hell out of that film.
Here we go:
Not on my top 10 - Chuck Wilson's War. Saw it, thought it was good, but considering the material, not much happened story-wise. He decided to help, then he helped, and that was it. Barely any conflict, and what little there was (possible drug scandal) was barely a blip. Interesting story, not a great flick.
The Hunting Party - Richare Gere, Jesse Eisenberg & Terrence Howard lead this funny but important film about journalists looking for a brutal Serbian terrorist. It's a pretty smart script, with great performances by the above-mentioned trio. Check it out.
The Ten (Funny, but kinda gets old).
The Bourne Ultimatum (a nice bookend if they stop, decent story and kewl action).
I Am Legend - Yeah, I liked it. Sue me.
Superbad/Knocked Up - Really funny stuff. Loved both.
Trade - Powerful stuff. Didn't amaze me though, the trailer was incredible, but it was still a good movie, and well worth seeing.
The Mist - Holy shit. A fine creature feature with a little social commentary thrown in. But that damn ending. It actually rips your heart out, pours gasoline on it, lights it on fire, then puts it out by taking a nice, long piss on it. Messed me up, man.
Here's what I HAVEN'T seen, that might have made my list:
Oh, and here's the worst of the year - Ghost Rider. Oh. My. God. What a piece of crap. Worst thing about it - Wes Bentley. I love this guy, too, but what a shittily written part and really really poorly acted, full of "Bwah! Bwah! Bwah! I'm going to take over the whole world!!!" Bullshit. Ugh.
Finally, here's the best:
10. The Lookout - Loved this movie. A nice caper, kick-ass writing and tight direction.
9. Once - A sweet little gem of a love story. I think it's a tad overrated, and some of it did drag, but it had some truly emotional scenes, and I loved the last shot. Loved it.
8. The Darjeeling Limited - It was no Royal Tennenbaums, but I liked the cast and think Wes Anderson did a nice job here.
6. Juno - Smart & witty, sure. It's a fun script, however, Cera, Garner, Bateman, and Page are the ones that ground it, the dialogue, its emotion. Some of the dialogue is actually a little to show-offy, but the actors make it work. And kudos to Jason Reitman, he did a fine job here.
5. No Country For Old Men - Great movie. It has some incredible scenes and great performances. But Bardem is a little overrated in this role. While he kicks ass, don't get me wrong, and makes a skin-crawling creepy killer, he's pretty emotionless and one-note. I would actually nominate Tommy Lee Jones over him, thought he was excellent (Brolin did fine, too). I liked the ending but didn't love it. Fargo was better.
4. There Will Be Blood - Daniel-Day Lewis is the movie. His performance is astounding. Paul Dano was wonderful as the preacher, and I think this is the best thing Paul Thomas Anderson has done.3. The Assasination Of Jesse James By The Coward Robert Ford - Casey Affleck should win the Oscar in my book. Brat Pitt was great as JJ, and Sam Rockwell was also damn good as always. Loved the direction and smart writing, but the cinematography blew me completely away. Roger Deakins should win the Oscar for this. And not just for the amazing landscapes he captured, but for the intimate scenes as well. Incredible, breathtaking stuff.
2. Sunshine - Wish more people saw this. Really amazing film. There's something that goes down approx. 3/4 of the way through the movie that I thought did not work real well, and that kept it out of the #1 spot. But for the most part, I thought this was fantastic. Haunting.
And at #1 - A Tie!
1A. 3:10 To Yuma - Great, great stuff. Bale & Crowe are superb, and the last 10 minutes is thrilling stuff. I can't describe it without spoiling, just see it. Best western since Unforgiven (not as good as Unforgiven, but came close - this is a damn fine film).
1B. Michael Clayton - For me, this movie kicked ass. The acting, crisp writing & direction, all of it came together for me. Clooney was superb, as were Pollack and Wiltkinson. Tony Gilroy rocks.
What were your faves?