I always do my 10 favorite films of the year, but seeing as we're enter a new decade of I'm sure memorable movies. I figured I would try to see if I can narrow down my long list of flick that I love in a top ten list.
This also made me realize that 1999 was a good year for movies, When I would think of a movie I wanted to include, it would dawn on me that it came out in 1999.
10) Little Miss Sunshine
This lovely little roadtrip film about a dysfunctional family taking their precious daughter to compete in a beauty pageant pulled on everyone's heart strings, and became the quirky indie that could. It was nominated for Best Picture at the Academy Awards.
9) Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind
Another film that was a whole lot of quirky. This film was about a couple that undergo a treatment to erase their memories of each other, only to find out exactly what they had. It's got an all star cast (Jim Carrey, Kate Winslet, Kirsten Dunst, Elijah Wood) and they are all top notch in the film.
8) I Am Sam
This tear jerker got riveting performances out of reliable lead actor (Sean Penn) and made everyone fall in love with the immensely talented (and robbed of an Oscar nom) Dakota Fanning. It also provided for the of the best arguments of the decade: The "You never go FULL retard" from 'Tropic Thunder'.
7) The Departed
I've never been much for "crime" movies, "mob" movies, or whatever you might call them. This one is so much more than that, and that's why it rises above the rest. Martin Scorcese was FINALLY given an Oscar for directing this film. It had an awesome cast, (although Matt Damon was seriously overlooked during awards season) a great script and a killer soundtrack. It also made for a beautiful moment at the Academy Awards. When the film won best picture they cut to a shot of Scorcese standing behind the curtain after accepting his director Oscar, clapping and watching. A little gem of a moment.
There are a ton of movies out there they try so hard to capture "teen angst" but this is still the only one that gets it 100% right. Evan Rachel Wood had her breakout moment playing troubled teen Tracey. This is director Catherine Hardwicke's best film to date. The acting was great, the dialogue believable, the script, the soundtrack, the way it was shot, everything fits in so perfectly. Not to mention I had a little De ja vu when I watched the belly button piercing scene: That's exactly how my friends and I did ours when we were 13.
5) Anchorman:The Legend of Ron Burgandy
There were a ton of great comedies towards the later part of the decade. (The 40 Year Old Virgin, Wedding Crashers, Hangover, Dodgeball, Forgetting Sarah Marshall) I chose 'Anchorman' as my favorite because it is definetly the most quotable. It wasn't trying to be a masterpiece, this film about newscasters in the 70's. It was relying on it's audience to laugh at joke after joke. And we did. We love Will Ferrell, Steve Carell and Paul Rudd; they've brought in the best comedies of all time. Along with Directors Adam McKay and Judd Appatow. We loved the news team showdown with cameos from Ben Stiller and Luke Wilson. I guarantee anyone who loves this movie can probably go all day with it's one liners. "I love Lamp", "Komo Esta, bitches..Spanish Language News Team!" "Look, the most glorious rainbow...do me on it!" "I love scotch..scotchy scotch scoth. There it goes down. Down into my belly. Mmm mmm mm." "I'm going to take your mother Dorothy Mantooth out for a nice seafood dinner and NEVER call her again!" See what I mean? Stay Classy.
4) There Will Be Blood
Paul Thomas Anderson's film about a man hungry for oil was one of the most intense films I've ever seen. Daniel Day-Lewis pulled us all in with his performance then proceeded to freak us out. The always talented, but sadly underrated Paul Dano did an awesome job with his character, a pastor that doesn't blend well with Day-Lewis's Daniel Plainview. The cinematography, the intense final scenes and of course the "I drink your Milkshake!" line make this one of my favorite films to date.
3) The Lord of the Rings Trilogy.
Although I'd have to say Return of the King was the best, I can't just include one without the others. Peter Jackson took one of the most beloved books of all time and turned it into a cinema masterpiece. The special effects were fantastic and we felt like we really knew all of the characters so well. We were really there with them on their journey.
2) Brokeback Mountain
Another movie adapted from the book. This was was more spot on then Lord of the Rings. Having read this book in college the same year the film came out, I was blown away by how close it was. Everything from the dialogue to the movements of the characters were just like the novel. Ang Lee got amazing performances out of his cast. The troubled Ennis (Heath Ledger), and love struck Jack (Jake Gyllenhaal) and the troubled Alma (Michelle Willams). So many people wrote this off as "the gay cowboy movie" but it's so much more than that. It's the greatest love story I've ever seen, and not just in this decade. But of all time.
1) The Dark Knight
This decade was definetly the year of the comic book movie. We had some greats, 'Spiderman', 'Spiderman 2', 'Batman Begins', 'The Watchmen', 'Sin City', 'Ironman'. We had some downers, 'The Fantasic Four' (both of them), 'Superman Returns', 'Daredevil', 'Electra'. One that stands out above the rest, and in my opinion, the best comic book movie of all time is Chritopher Nolan's 'The Dark Knight' He took it a step up from his already awesome 'Batman Begin's and brought us a darker, more action packed sequel. He replaced the first film's weakest link (Katie Holmes) with the talented Maggie Gyllenhaal. He casted the perfect villain in the Joker (Heath Ledger) and made us want more. A lot of people say that we wouldn't be so in love with Ledger's joker if he were still alive. He wouldnt' have gotten this recognition if he were still alive. I think that's crap. I think it would've been made an even bigger deal if the late actor hadn't tragically left us so soon. He was the best part of the film. When he was on screen, he had your attention, and when he wasn't you were still thinking about him. This isn't to take away from the rest of the talented cast, Christian Bale (complete badass as Batman), Morgan Freeman (Read my 'Invitus' review, and you'll know how much I love this guy), Aaron Eckhart (he did fabulous as Two Face), Michael Cain (The perfect Alfred) and Gary Oldman.(Awesome, and even more so when you thought they killed him and then brought him back) They were all fantastic, but it's still The Joker that had you wanting more. Sadly, we won't ever get to see him again.