Saturday, December 31, 2011

My Top Ten Favorite Movies of 2011

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Okay, while I still didn't see the four movies I was holding out for before I wrote this list (The Descendents, The Artist, Melancholia, and Take Shelter), I still saw an assload of movies and here were my favorites of the year. Maybe your favorites made the list, too. Check it out.

10. Horrible Bosses

Horrible Bosses was the kind of movie that was hilarious the first time, but not so much the second. Kind of like Borat. It doesn't hold up on repeated viewings, but for that first time I saw it, it was one of my favorite movies of the summer. Motherf**ker' Jones!

9. Rango

Rango was just too weird NOT to like. Any "kid's movie" that features a cameo of Raoul Duke from Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas makes this list. No question.

8. Hugo

Hugo was the film I was most surprised with liking this year, which is strange, given that it had the Scorsese pedigree. Watching those trailers, though, I didn't know what to think. But after seeing it, it's one of the most beautiful films of the year. It's touching and also a history lesson on film. It's incredible. But it's also definitely NOT for kids. Not because it has anything their virgin ears couldn't handle, but because it takes a very adult approach in telling a children's story. Kids will be bored silly, but adults will dig it. See this film.

7. Cedar Rapids

Honestly the funniest movie of the year. In what other film do you have John C. Reilly being his regular goofy self, and Senator Clay Davis (Isiah Whitlock Jr.) pretending to be Omar from The Wire? A first class comedy with heart. I loved it.

6. 50/50

Wow. Looking back at this list, 2011 was seriously the year of comedies. But 50/50 was a different kind of comedy since it was the kind that could make you feel stronger after watching it. Joseph Gordon-Levitt bared the burden of carrying the emotional heft of this cancer tale by having the Big C, and Seth Rogen got to lighten it up by saying lines like, "He has type 4 Cancer." Type 4 Cancer...that still makes me laugh. A great, sad, and yet, triumphant film. It's little wonder so few people actually saw it. It was too good for most people.

5. X-Men: First Class

X-Men: First Class is the best Marvel movie ever made and only a step down from the greatness that is The Dark Knight. Nuff said.

4. The Muppets

I knew I was going to love the Muppet movie as how could I not? It's the Muppets. But I didn't think I would love it THIS much. It's just too good. My favorite part of it is actually not even the Muppets themselves, but Chris Cooper, who steals the show entirely. Maniacal laugh.

3. Drive

If this list was for the coolest picture of the year, Drive would be number one, no question. Its style was impeccable, its music was incredible, and the acting in it was just jaw-droppingly good. Plus, it had Bryan Cranston in it, so yeah, one of the best of the year. Love it.

2. War Horse

War Horse is incredibly mawkish and melodramatic, but it made me cry. Twice. I don't cry in movies. Ever. But War Horse made me do it. From the music, to the cinematography, to just everything about it, it's one of the most beautiful and touching films I've ever seen. It's also one of Spielberg's best.

1. The Tree of Life

My favorite film of the year (and inversely, my fiance's most hated film of the year) is probably one of the most polarizing films you'll ever see. You either love it to death, or you think it's one of the worst films you've ever seen. I pick the former. It's beautiful beyond measure and it captivated me to the very last frame. It's the only film I've ever seen where the plot was not as important as the visuals passing by. It's like a dream, a meandering, but focused, dream. The best film of the year, no question. Hell, one of the best films ever in my opinion. A masterpiece.

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