Monday, February 28, 2011

Top 10 Movies of 2010

The Oscars have deemed The King's Speech as the Best Picture of 2010. While i agree that it is a superb film, i do not believe it to be the best movie of the past year. So to support my argument, here are my choices for the ten best movies of 2010.

10. Exit Through the Gift Shop
Banksy's exciting delving into the life of a street artist was one of the most entertaining movies that i saw in 2010. Forget the claim that the story is a hoax; that's the point. It creates a hall of mirrors in the world of art in which no one knows what's real anymore.

9. Shutter Island
Martin Scorsese's psychological thriller is totally undeserving of the mixed reviews that it received upon release. Scorsese compares the insane mind to the everyday mind, in which the world we live in corrupts our morality and gives birth to darkness. Leonardo Dicaprio deserved an Oscar nomination for his performance.

8. Inception
Inception is interesting, because i honestly believe that it's overall quality is affected by how you interpret it, which is obviously open to argument. If you look at it as a straight action movie, then it's a good, but not great genre movie. But if you take it metaphorically, as i do, to the art of filmmaking, then it works as a complex and exciting genre-transcending movie.

7. Black Swan
Darren Aronofsky's female counterpart to The Wrestler was the most visceral and visually stunning movie of 2010. Natalie Portman's Oscar winning role is one of the finest female lead performances of the past decade.

6. The Fighter
The finest ensemble cast of the year makes up The Fighter, in which two of its supporting roles, Melissa Leo and Christian Bale, won Oscars. The Fighter is a familiar story but the reason it works so well is that it's told from a completely different angle, in which one boxer's dream of winning the title is surrounded by conflict and influenced by family.

5. True Grit
Jeff Bridges gives in my opinion the best performance of the year as Rooster Cogburn, the drunk U.S. Marshall who helps teenager Mattie Harris (Hailee Steinfeld) hunt down the man who killed her father. Bridges and Steinfeld have the finest on-screen chemistry of the year, a true testament to the acting skill of the two considering that they are separated by 48 years of age.

4. The King's Speech 
The 2010 Best Picture winner works so well because it is a relatable period piece. The story of the Duke of York who becomes King of England just before World War Two because his brother abdicates the throne is a modern buddy film set on a classical landscape. Oscar winner Colin Firth and Oscar nominee Geoffrey Rush are fantastic together.

3. Catfish
The best documentary of the year tells the story of Nev Schulman, a photographer from New York who develops a romantic relationship with a young woman who he meets on Facebook and takes a trip to Michigan to meet her. What follows is one of the most dramatic and revealing segments of film from 2010. Catfish teaches us that we live in such an inept world that we are forced to pursue our dreams vicariously through fakeness and under the constrictions of society.

2. The Social Network
The Social Network should really be called "The Tragedy of Mark Zuckerberg" in that the movie isn't really about Facebook, but rather a portrayal of the modern world's tragic hero. Mark Zuckerberg gave the world of its greatest gifts, Facebook, but The Social Network tells us that Zuckerberg's motives are born from conflicts that stem from society. Zuckerberg invented Facebook so that he could finally feel like he could fit in, but in doing so, he created a world in which no one does.

1. Toy Story 3
The best film of 2010 could top any end-of-the-year list of the past decade. Toy Story 3 is a truly perfect film, a combination of everything you could ever ask for in a movie. It's funny, touching, revealing, beautiful, heartfelt, dramatic, and most of all, entertaining. Pixar knows what movies should be and continue to turn out gems with an incredible amount of consistency. If i had to pick the ten best movie scenes of the year, Toy Story 3 would have at least 5 of them. It had the year's best script, direction, and delivery of theme, in which the very adult idea of abandonment sneaks up and floors you. The final scene, with Andy's departure from Woody and the gang, is not only the ending to a perfect film, but also the finale to the greatest movie series we've ever seen and will ever see. So long, partner.

Honorable Mention: 127 Hours, Winter's Bone, Scott Pilgrim vs. The World, Kick Ass, I'm Still Here. (Does the Pixar short "Day and Night" count? Because it would totally be included here as well).

Most Underrated: Catfish or Shutter Island

Most Overrated: The Kids Are All Right

1 comment:

  1. I liked your list. We share some of the same picks, but I've got a couple unconventional favorites of my own. They are here: in case you're interested.