Monday, April 19, 2010

Top 20 Films of the 2000's, Part I

Okay, so I promised this post...a million years ago. But here it is, compiled, but definitely still undergoing edits. And they're not in order (except the top 3). That's just too hard. It was difficult enough to come up with a reasonable list. So here goes.

20. Memento

















I only just watched this film about three months ago. It was on instant Netflix and it was in my queue for a long time and so I decided to just watch it one day. And I am so glad I did. I was told a number of times that it was really strange and confusing, but that didn't prepare me for what I was watching one bit. I love this film and am SO GLAD it was made in 2000. Christopher Nolan did a great job and the acting was spot on. I'd go on about it, but I have 19 more films to cover. So on to the next!

19. O, Brother, Where Art Thou?

















I actually just finished watching this film about 10 minutes ago (from the time I'm typing this, not 10 minutes ago your time unless you're reading over my shoulder. Creeper.) and I couldn't believe it eluded my list. I had to bump one of my other favorite movies so that I could make the cut. Great cinematography and great dialogue, and that soundtrack is phenomenal! Please tell me one of you has it so I can borrow it when I get back?! This is probably my favorite Coen Brothers film (though Fargo is up there), and I could watch it once a week for the rest of my life and it probably won't get old. 

18. The Incredibles

















I had to limit my amount of Pixar films to two (yes, another is coming. Is the anticipation killing you?) and this one is my ULTIMATE favorite, I've decided. Witty banter amidst all the fighting and dire situations and then a great message at the end of it all: no matter who you are and who your family is, stay true to yourself and never lose sight of what really matters. Of course, this doesn't apply to my family because I'm constantly ashamed that I am related to such a rowdy bunch (just kidding, guys! I love you all...like I love the blister on my foot). Anyways, I think the soundtrack is amazing, the animation great (as always), and just all around one of the best Pixar films yet!

17. Frost/Nixon

















This is probably the film that will shock the most of you in terms of it being on my top 20. I'm even shocked that it's here. But every time I even think about removing it, I can't seem to do it. Something about this film really struck a chord and I genuinely loved it. The acting was phenomenal. Michael Sheen, despite stooping to the level of being in "New Moon", was so great and Frank Langella as Richard Nixon was very convincing and haunting. I thought it was very well done and definitely, looking back, feel it was under-appreciated at the 2009 Academy Awards. But, hey, it made it onto this list and that's the best honors it can ever hope for.

16. The Prestige

















Random tangent: Why is Scarlett the woman in the weird smoke center? There were two other women of more importance that deserve to be all mysterious between Hugh and Christian! Seriously. Ugh. Annoying.
Sorry.
So, Christopher Nolan has a second film in the list. But it is well deserved. Much like Pixar, I had to limit my Christopher Nolan filmage (yes, I made up a word).  I remember the first time I watched the film and remember the emotion when it finished. I believe my mouth was hanging open slightly and I probably had an expression of complete awe on my face. Probably. I can't have an out-of-body experience and stare at myself, so I wouldn't know. But it's a great piece of cinematic genius and Nolan once again achieves something that can't ever be repeated, or else it looks like a copycat. Good work, Chris!

15. Julie & Julia

















This is a recent addition to "the list."  I've seen it 3 times in the last two months (2 times so I could write my Final Film Analysis on it with thorough detail), and each time fills me with a strong desire to bake, which I usually oblige by making something severely unhealthy.  The editing is absolutely seamless despite the fact that it's constantly switching between two stories in two very different time periods. Meryl Streep is so lovable as Julia Child and Amy Adams is as personable as ever portraying a frazzled government worker trying to prove something to herself. If it looks to "feel good" for you all, set that emotion aside and give it a fighting chance. It is feel good, but not in all the ways you think. Trust me. Watch it. If you hate it...whatever.

14. Runaway Jury

















Apart from seeing the film, I've also read the book. And (sorry John Grisham) I think I love the plotline to the film more. Not that smoking is a very alluring topic of controversy, I just find guns bring out more passion in me. I know, it seems strange that a girl in the ROTC is against the selling of firearms, but I'm just one big contradiction. Get over it. Anyways, I think the film is very suspenseful and keeps you on your toes until the last five minutes when everything comes together in glorious fashion and you just wanna stand up, walk to the screen and laugh hard and loud in Gene Hackman's grimacing face. Well, not to Gene Hackman as himself, but his character. He's probably a very pleasant man. And goodness, I have the worst attention span. Back to movies...

13. In Bruges

















I actually have this movie list written down and "In Bruges" is written over a title scratched out. Random fact. Anyways, this is another random addition to the list but the screenplay by itself makes this film so great (minus all the swearing...)! Colin Farrel, who isn't in a lot of stuff I like except his guest appearance in "Scrubs", is hilarious as is Ralph Fiennes, whom I now have a hard time differentiating from Voldemort even though he looks nothing like the Dark Lord without the make-up. The ending of this film is also surprisingly emotional. Here I was thinking this was going to be a movie about shooting and it ends up being a very hilarious movie about shooting with a surprisingly bittersweet ending. But I'm not gonna say more on the matter. 

12. Unmistaken Child

















I've already talked about this film once before. And here it is, in the list. This is also the first documentary film so far...wow. More are coming (more anticipation!).  I cried probably 5 times in this film for whatever reason. I need to see it again to remind myself why I cried so much. Maybe I was hormonal, or maybe it was THAT good. I'm thinking a combo of both. I'm always hormonal.  But it was really beautiful, so emotional, and really puts religion into perspective. It just goes to show that even though I know I have the fullness of the gospel, that doesn't mean that other religions don't have bits and pieces. Ya dig?

11. Man on Wire

















This isn't supposed to be here. I had another title typed next to the number, but then remembered that this film was the beginning of my Documentary obsession. It is the reason why I want to emphasize in documentary filmmaking once I get into the Media Arts program at BYU. It started my binging of documentary film and although the binging has slowed to a steady consumption and there hasn't been any purging (what would that look like?!), documentary film is now my favorite thing to watch. Call me boring or snobbish, I just find it very refreshing when you watch a good documentary. But then the complete opposite when you see a bad one. This particular film renewed my dreams and passions and solidified my future. If you haven't seen a single documentary besides the ones you had to watch in Biology or something, watch this one. Maybe you'll discover your inner documentary-fanatic like me!

Alright, well that's all for now. To be continued...

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