Happy New Year’s Forget the Box readers! While you spend the day thinking about your 2011 resolutions you won’t follow up on and make your plans on where you’ll get drunk tonight (which of course you will follow up on), I invite you to peruse my list of what I believe were the best films of 2010:
10. TOY STORY 3
I’ve always been a huge Pixar fan and the studio did not disappoint with the third installment of the Toy Story franchise. While I don’t necessarily agree with some of my fellow film geeks that it’s the best of the trilogy, it’s easily the best animated film of the year.
9. THE SOCIAL NETWORK
This summer a friend and I were joking about how Hollywood was so desperate for ideas that “Craigslist: The Movie” just might be the next big blockbuster. I was pretty shocked afterwards when I heard that my friend and I weren’t far off; Hollywood was making a Facebook movie. Like most people I think went to see it this fall with extremely low expectations. I give some mad props to the dynamic director David Fincher and the excellent performance of Jesse Eisenberg for proving me very, very wrong.
8. 127 HOURS
Inspired by the real life story of a man who had to cut off his own arm to escape to freedom after being trapped in a cave, 127 Hours would be nothing if it weren’t for the amazing performance of James Franco. I’ve always liked Franco since his days on Freaks and Geeks, but this film really proved to me that he’s much more than an extremely attractive face. Seriously, almost the entire film takes place with one man stuck in a cave, and I never once found myself getting bored. Franco is an easy lock for an Oscar nomination in February.
7. EXIT THROUGH THE GIFT SHOP
I’ve admitted in this column before, documentaries aren’t my favourite genre of film, but I was blown away by this trippy is-it true-or-not doc about the artist Banksy. I wish I could put into more eloquent words my feelings about this film, but what I will say is make sure you see it immediately.
6. THE TOWN
Ben Affleck, auteur? Did any of us out there, especially after the disaster that was Gigli, believe that we would ever utter those words? Well that Bostonian sure showed us because with his second strong film in a row no one can deny any longer that the guy has some serious talent behind the camera. Set in the Boston crime world Affleck assembled a great cast of misfits trying to get out of their desperate situations and my all time favourite hottie Jon Hamm as the cop trying to bring them down.
5. THE KING’S SPEECH
This year the Oscar race for best actor will be between two men; James Franco and Colin Firth. Usually cast as the charming nice guy, here Firth like Franco gets to expand his acting chops and proves he’s very much up to the task. Playing Queen Elizabeth’s father King George, who had to overcome his stutter in order to give public speeches, in my opinion is the best role of Firth’s career. Geoffrey Rush is also great as King George’s speech therapist and the chemistry between Rush and Firth is outstanding. Even British men can have a bromance.
Christopher Nolan has shown yet again that it is possible to make a film that’s a commercial blockbuster and truly original piece of art. A reflection on dreams and the nature of reality, Inception has been my most watched film of 2010 (twice in theatres, several more times since purchasing it a few weeks ago). I still can’t say that I completely understand it, but that’s also what I love so much about it.
3. BLACK SWAN
Read my review from two weeks ago to discover more thoroughly my thoughts on this film, needless to say it’s freakin’ amazing.
2. THE KIDS ARE ALRIGHT
Another film where I encourage you to read my review from August to get my full feelings on it. What I will say here is that its leading ladies Julianne Moore and Annette Benning are spectacular in it and better get some Oscar love for this heartwarming yet realistic take on the modern American family.
1. THE GHOST WRITER
My favourite film of 2010 is this Roman Polanski thriller about a man (Ewan McGregor) hired to ghost write the memoires of a former British prime minister (Pierce Brosnan). Everything about this film in my opinion is perfect; the plot keeps you guessing and delivers some pretty fantastic blows all the way through. The cinematography is stunning. The acting is top notch, even from Kim Cattrall ,who ironically also starred in what was most definitely the worst film of 2010: Sex and the City 2.
I have a feeling that the flashier films of 2010 will overshadow The Ghost Writer during awards season, but I’ll always know this was the best film of the year and now you do too! I look forward to a new year of being pleasantly surprised when a Hollywood film doesn’t suck ,and discovering that great new indie or foreign film. Happy Holidays everyone!