Friday, January 15, 2010
THE OTHER TOP FIVE OF 2009
Following the Hamster's lead, I'll dish out my top 5s in a few categories for 2009:
TOP FIVE FILMS IN THE THEATRE of 2009:
1) ZOMBIELAND--I didn't care for it as much the first time around, but with the guest cameos, the clever titles, and the role Woody Harrelson was born to play, this was unquestionably the winner.
2) THE WRESTLER--this comes in a close second, for a whole host of reasons. I've never cared for Mickey Rourke that much, but this film hits a home-run, if only because it's one of those rare films which has a vision of the world, and then unrelentingly plows forward toward the inevitable conclusion. I sat stunned after it finished. Technically, this was "2008" film, but I saw it in 2009 in the theater, so whatever. It was incredible.
3) I LOVE YOU, MAN--saw this one three weeks before the wedding with Matt Moser, and totally identified with this film. It's so true, and while the Hangover may have more laughs, this was a more likeable film than The Hangover. Paul Rudd can't compete with Zach Galifinakis for the comedic genius, but he's still pretty freaking funny.
4) INGLORIOUS BASTERDS--saw this for a second time the other night at Matt's, and upon a second watching, I like it better. It's a return of Tarrantino to story-telling, apart from the crap he's dished out for the last few films, and an excellent commentary on what is art, and how life and art implicate one another.
5) UP--I teared up a couple of times during an animated film. That alone gets it a mention. I hate the phrase "family friendly", but it fits. I should own this one.
--Avatar--visually stunning, but the plot left a lot lacking.
--Star Trek--I'm a sucker for reboots. I love what Nolan has done with the Batman franchise, for example, and word has it, the same is in store for Spiderman.
--The Hangover--Zach Galifanakis.
--Julie and Julia--I heart Amy Adams, and Meryl Streep--how can you not love Meryl?
TOP FIVE RENTALS OF 2009:
1) LET THE RIGHT ONE IN--what Kevin said. This was subtle, and the kind of monster movie that is not restricted to a sub-genre.
2) THE KING OF KONG--can a documentary about video games get me jumping up and down? This one did. Sarah does not get it; I love her anyway.
3) MURDERBALL--another beautiful documentary that I alternately laughed and teared up while watching.
4) ATONEMENT--this film has me thinking about what narration is and does in completely different ways. I still haven't figured out how to write about this movie.
5) JESUS CHRIST, VAMPIRE HUNTER--plot: Jesus comes to rid the world of a vampire horde who is stealing all of Montreal's lesbians. Need I say more? It's really smart, and laden with Scriptural references, and surprisingly, Jesus comes off pretty great.
FIVE I DIDN'T SEE IN THE THEATERE BUT AM CHOMPING AT THE BIT TO SEE:
1) THE ROAD--once again, Waco stays true to form and keeps an apocalyptic film destined for an Oscar nomination out of the theaters.
2) UP IN THE AIR--on everyone's top 10 list, but I reference the reasons for #1.
3) THE HURT LOCKER--I feel like I'm getting repetitive.
4) A SERIOUS MAN--I do love the Cohen Brothers.
5) CRAZY HEART--Jeff Bridges in a much-talked about Oscar buzz role.
and, last but not least....THREE DOGS OF 2009:
1) TERMINATOR: SALVATION--all of the explosions, none of the plot nuances of the other Terminators.
2) GI JOE: THE RISE OF COBRA--I am so glad I only paid a dollar at the Red Box for this turd blossom.
3) WOLVERINE--I can't really talk about this. Too soon.