- Edit: 2/3/10, after watching most of the films of 2009 that I have wanted to see, here's my edited top 10:
- 1) District 9 9/10
An alien race and their mothership is stranded on Earth. How do we greet the aliens and what do we do with them? We marginalize the "prawns" and confine them to a ghetto known as District 9. This film is a thought-provoking sci-fi thriller, existential drama, and social commentary rolled into one.
- 2) Inglourious Basterds 8/10
Christoph Waltz is chillingly brilliant and Mélanie Laurent gives an equally superlative performance. Brad Pitt is hilariously over-the-top, but not to the detriment of the film. However, great segments like the chilling intro, the lunch scene, the projection room scene, and the theater scene are marred by other uneven bits and hammy acting from the supporting cast. Eli Roth (horrible), Omar Doom, and B.J. Novak mail in lackluster performances.
- 3) (500) Days of Summer 8/10
Cute movie about the relationship travails of a man who works at a greeting card company and the co-worker he falls for, a woman who supposedly doesn't believe that true love exists. Gordon-Levitt and Deschanel are perfectly cast for their roles.
- 4) Let the Right One In 8/10
Just your typical Swedish film about a shy, intelligent, somewhat effeminate, and frequently bullied boy who befriends a young girl, who later reveals that she is a vampire. Lina Leandersson and Kåre Hedebrant are brilliant in their film debuts. Look for an inferior U.S. remake in 2010.
- 5) Revanche 8/10
Ingmar Bergman meets the Austrian common man. A fascinating look at ordinary folks trying to make an honest living in the city's underworld and in the countryside. The film tells the tale of a crime that goes terribly wrong and the weight of its unintended consequences.
- 6) Zombieland 8/10
Zombieland is a hilarious spoof on zombie flicks with loads of campy fun and gory slow motion. The appearance of B.M. is classic and Woody Harrelson is hilarious. The Pacific Playland sequence is also quite fun.
- 7) Star Trek 8/10
A stunning opening scene and intriguing alternate reality storyline makes for one of the best Star Trek movies (if not the best) since Wrath of Khan.
- 8) Two Lovers 7/10
Better than the typical love triangle romantic drama. It is set in Brooklyn and features a bachelor torn between a family friend and his neighbor. The characters are complex and the emotional entanglements are compelling thanks to the strong acting performances.
- 9) Up 7/10
Pretty good story and great vocal cast, but not one of my favorite Pixar movies.
- 10) The Hangover 7/10
Hilariously over-the-top comedy that combines wit and dialogue reminiscent of Judd Apatow with Farrelly brothers-like vulgarity. What happens in Vegas definitely should stay in Vegas.
The Girlfriend Experience 7/10
I Love You, Man 7/10
Public Enemies 7/10
Movies not seen yet: Adventureland, Avatar, The Brothers Bloom, Coraline, Duplicity, Fantastic Mr. Fox, The Hurt Locker, The Informant!, La Mujer Sin Cabeza, Observe and Report, Sin Nombre, Sunshine Cleaning, Tyson, Up In the Air, Where the Wild Things Are, too many more to name
1) Avatar 9/10
2) District 9 9/10
3) Inglourious Basterds 8/10
4) The Hurt Locker 8/10
5) 500 Days of Summer 8/10
6) The Fantastic Mr. Fox 8/10
7) Let the Right One In 8/10
8) Revanche 8/10
9) Zombieland 8/10
10) Star Trek 8/10
HM: Up In the Air, Two Lovers, Up, The Hangover
Hello everyone. It's been a long time since I've posted. Hopefully, I can start to post more than a few times per year. If there is a Muse of blogging, he was not inspiring me last year. Happy 2010 to all. Stay tuned for my (belated) top songs and albums of 2009 lists.
Here are my favorite films of 2009. I did not see as many as I would have liked to, and overall, I think it was a weaker year for movies than usual.