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Michael's movies make top movie lists of the year and decade

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Post by Admin on Fri Dec 18, 2009 5:39 pm

http://www.irishcentral.com/ent/Top-10-Irish-films-of-the-decade--79490672.html

Top 10 Irish films of the decade
By DARA MCBRIDE
,
IrishCentral.com Staff Writer

Published Thursday, December 17, 2009, 7:41 AM
Updated Friday, December 18, 2009, 1:38 PM

Top 10 Irish films of the decade

Gifted Irish and Irish American filmmakers make creating a top ten list of the best films of the 00’s a cinch. We apologize if we’ve left your favorite out but we had to select just 10. The following 10 movies feature an Irish director, theme or star. Hey, can you think of another nation the size of Rhode Island that has had such a profound impact on the world stage?

2. Hunger (2008)

Artist Steve McQueen’s first film is a masterpiece. It explores the life and legacy of Bobby Sands (played by Ireland’s Michael Fassbender) with an outsider’s detachment. For the prison wardens of the H-Block the day begins with a search under the car for explosive devices; for the Republican prisoners, the day begins with a violent strip search and interrogation. In the film, all of this is presented dispassionately, without a word. But McQueen stands back, takes no side, and simply films what he sees. What he’s really interested in, we eventually discover, is how a man comes to the decision to starve himself to death, and what happens to him once that choice is made. Hunger is one of the most accomplished films of the decade.
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Post by Admin on Fri Dec 18, 2009 9:28 pm

http://furloughfilmfest.wordpress.com/2009/12/18/top-50-films-of-the-00s-1/

FFFF Listicle: The Top 50 Films of the ’00s – 1

We’ve finally reached the top 10 films of the ’00s. It has been fun counting down and remembering these movies. I have even re-watched some just in the course of making my list because writing about them just made me need to see them! I may still do another post in the coming weeks with honorable mentions, but for now, the top 10 films of the ’00s. In order by (United States) release date:

Hunger (2008) – A vividly visual exploration of prison conditions for IRA prisoners and the ensuing hunger strike led by Bobby Sands, here played with total dedication by Michael Fassbender. Director Steve McQueen’s artful approach to this historical material is breathtaking and original.
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Post by Admin on Sat Dec 19, 2009 2:24 am

http://thepaulies.blogspot.com/2009/12/what-i-didnt-hate-in-2009-and-maybe.html

Friday, December 18, 2009
What I Didnt Hate in 2009 (And Maybe Even Kinda Sorta Liked) by Rudy
I am, once again, a little light on new music. But the important thing is ... I'm making progress! Last year I had three, this year five, next year I'm going to breakout (you'll see).

And now to the movies. Not a terrible year for film given the death of the independent distributor. Here is a top 9:

1. HUNGER
The cinematography is bananas. The details: crumbs falling to the floor, snow flakes melting on raw knuckles. And the movie that started everything for Michael Fassbender. Directed by Steve McQueen. No. The other Steve McQueen.

2. INGLORIOUS BASTERDS
Count me as a skeptic when this came out. But I loved it (as much as I can love a movie with Brad Pitt in it). The simple, drawn-out scenes were refreshing, complimented with great dialogue and performances (sans Brad Pitt).
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Post by Admin on Sat Dec 19, 2009 2:47 pm

http://douglascuba.blogspot.com/2009/12/best-of-2009-films.html

Saturday, 19 December 2009
Best of 2009 - Films

Following on from my favourite albums and books of 2009, here are the films that have impressed me the most over the past twelve months. As with my books and albums, not all the following films actually came out in 2009.

Hunger
I've already written about this film on my blog so I only have to repeat that it is a stunning and unforgettable piece of cinematic art. Directed by the English director and artist Steve McQueen and starring the hugely talented Michael Fassbender, the film documents the 1981 Irish Hunger Strike, powerfully emphasising the human courage, political conviction and personal suffering of Bobby Sands.
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Post by Admin on Sun Dec 20, 2009 11:18 pm

http://www.slantmagazine.com/film/features/2009yearinfilm.asp

17. Hunger. An austere study of self-destruction as political heroism, Hunger implicates its audience as witnesses to its dramatization of the 1981 hunger-strike death of Irish republican prisoner Bobby Sands, underplayed with iconic force by Michael Fassbender. Skeptics attacked first-time director Steve McQueen for aestheticizing the martyr as an IRA Christ, brutally scourged at the hands of British guards before expiring to save his people, but perhaps they failed to recognize a meditation on rebellion that refused to condescend or reassure. Sands's 20-minute debate with an activist priest, shot mostly in one static two-shot, was one of the year's great scenes. BW


Inglourious Basterds7. Inglourious Basterds. A blazing cine-essay, Quentin Tarantino's history-scrambling WWII epic brazenly boils half a century of war movies into a saturated fresco of truculent heroes, silky villains, avenging angels, slugger-toting golems, and tainted victories. Both a culmination and a subversive travesty of men-on-a-mission gorefests (as well as the most ingenious display of languages wrestling for cultural domination since Godard's Contempt), this movie buff's sonata builds to a literally incendiary climax that once again reinforces the need to watch QT's films not as hipster karaoke sessions, but as volatile avalanches of old-into-new images and sounds where memory, identity, and transformation jostle. FC
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Post by Admin on Wed Dec 23, 2009 2:45 am

http://www.pegasusnews.com/news/2009/dec/23/film-guys-pick-most-memorable-movie-moments-2009/

Film guys pick their most memorable movie moments of 2009

I asked Alex to put on his cogitating cap and come up with five movie moments from 2009 that he will never forget. Meanwhile, I would come up with my five. (It should be noted that the memorable moments we conjured up are not necessarily GOOD ones.)

Only problem: I forgot to tell him to actually write them down, and so we ended up having to make this cheesy video in which we're sitting at the conference table at PegNews World HQ and talking about the cinematic visions that seared themselves into our brains for all times. (Or at least until we start watching movies in 2010.)
Film guys’ most memorable movie moments: 2009

Alex and John talk about the scenes they'll never forget.

We didn't compare notes beforehand, and so the fact that we both ended up choosing a particular scene from Inglourious Basterds must mean that we were cranially separated at birth. (Radical surgery, that.)

Here are links to reviews of the films mentioned first in Alex's, and then my, commentary:

Alex's part:

(500) Days of Summer

Inglourious Basterds

Brüno

Every Little Step

I Love You, Man

John's part:

The International

Inglourious Basterds

Gentlemen Broncos

Boondock Saints II: All Saints Day

Antichrist


Alex Bentley

Wednesday, December 23, 2009
Film guys pick their most memorable movie moments of 2009

by Alex Bentley , John P. Meyer

These scenes are so searing, they will scorch themselves onto the loops and whorls of your gray matter.

I asked Alex to put on his cogitating cap and come up with five movie moments from 2009 that he will never forget. Meanwhile, I would come up with my five. (It should be noted that the memorable moments we conjured up are not necessarily GOOD ones.)

Only problem: I forgot to tell him to actually write them down, and so we ended up having to make this cheesy video in which we're sitting at the conference table at PegNews World HQ and talking about the cinematic visions that seared themselves into our brains for all times. (Or at least until we start watching movies in 2010.)
Film guys’ most memorable movie moments: 2009

Alex and John talk about the scenes they'll never forget.

We didn't compare notes beforehand, and so the fact that we both ended up choosing a particular scene from Inglourious Basterds must mean that we were cranially separated at birth. (Radical surgery, that.)

Here are links to reviews of the films mentioned first in Alex's, and then my, commentary:

Alex's part:

(500) Days of Summer

Inglourious Basterds

Brüno

Every Little Step

I Love You, Man

John's part:

The International

Inglourious Basterds

Gentlemen Broncos

Boondock Saints II: All Saints Day

Antichrist

As a holiday bonus for our loyal readers, I asked erstwhile correspondent Kip Mooney (who's been busy actually trying to improve his lot through advanced educational pursuits at UNT) to contribute his own five fave moments of the year -- and he came up with, among other things, a completely different scene from IB. Congratulations, I suppose, are due to Mr. Tarantino for so effectively imprinting vicarious experiences on our collective gray matter.

(Since Kip was not available to appear on camera, I'm including his picks below, as mere humble text.)

Kip says:

Inglourious Basterds: For two hours, including brilliantly paced moments with Christoph Waltz and Michael Fassbender, Quentin Tarantino built scene upon tense scene. But the audience finally got a taste of the resolution they were waiting for as Melanie Laurent (who should also receive some Oscar attention) applied her make-up/war paint to the sounds of David Bowie’s “Cat People (Putting Out the Fire)” as she prepared for a Nazi barbecue.
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Post by Admin on Wed Dec 23, 2009 3:09 am

http://sheslostcontrol-again.blogspot.com/2009/12/top-films-2009.html

Translated from French:

2 / Fish Tank for Andrea Arnold

The interpretation of Katie Jarvis. Photography. Michael Fassbender. California Dreamin '. The glimmer of hope at the end.

3 / Inglourious Basterds Quentin Tarantino

The opening scene with the dialogue and the endless flight of Mélanie Laurent. Michael Fassbender who speaks German. Brad Pitt who "speaks" Italian. The grand finale. Demonic laughter Melanie Laurent.
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Post by Admin on Mon Dec 28, 2009 6:15 pm

http://www.42inchtelevision.com/2009/12/lisztomania-best-movies-of-2009.html

Lisztomania: The Best Movies of 2009
Posted by Christopher Rosen on Friday, December 25, 2009
Labels: Adventureland, District 9, Fantastic Mr. Fox, Inglourious Basterds, Star Trek, The Hangover, Up, Up in the Air, Where the Wild Things Are, Whip It, Zombieland

When I started to look back on my favorite movies of 2009, I immediately realized two things. This year was a bellwether one for big studio productions (there are only three "indies" on my list, and they really aren't that indie at all) and, perhaps not coincidentally, it was also one of the weakest years of the decade. And while I've yet to see Crazy Heart, Nine, It's Complicated or Precious: Based on the Novel Push by Sapphire, I feel pretty certain about that second point.

As you read through my top-ten list, you'll notice some obvious omissions. Of course there's the aforementioned Precious, which is a movie I hope to never see in all my life. Whether or not Lee Daniels' lightning rod film is the heartbreaking work of a staggering genius or racist minstrel show pornography of the highest order (or maybe a combination of both) is beside the point. In either case, it looks so unappealing that I'd rather just skip Precious altogether.

The Hurt Locker and A Serious Man, however, won't appear because of my opinion of them. Of the two, I certainly liked The Hurt Locker more, but that isn't really saying much. The film suffers from redundancy and hand-holding and, despite much so-called "tension," it plateaus at least an hour before a telegraphed conclusion. Kathryn Bigelow does an adequate job directing the action set pieces—though, truthfully, so much of her work is derivative of Michael Bay and Peter Berg—but Mark Boal's script offers her no favors at all. That anyone can sit there and call The Hurt Locker riveting filmmaking is laughable; this is a movie that tells you within the first five seconds what its thesis is (as the title card says, "war is a drug"), and then spends the next two hours underscoring the point without any further elaboration. It's The Kingdom for people who think they're smarter than you. Newsflash: they aren't.

As for A Serious Man, I don't even have that much to say about it other than the fact that I hated it with every fiber of my being. The Coen Brothers are a very hit and miss proposition and they rarely offer any middle ground. Their movies are either fantastic (Fargo, Miller's Crossing, The Big Lebowski, the first 95% of No Country for Old Men) or horrendous (Burn After Reading, the last 5% of No Country for Old Men). File A Serious Man in the latter category. The less said about that film, the better.

And, of course, you won't find Avatar on this list either, but you already know why.

Now that we've gotten all the housekeeping out of the way, onto the list of my eleven favorite films and some honorable misfires. Bear in mind, I reserve the right to change my mind on this order immediately after hitting publish...


3.) Inglourious Basterds
I'm not entirely sure if this is actually Quentin Tarantino's "masterpiece," as Lt. Aldo Raine cheekily says at the close of the film—there is still the matter of Pulp Fiction both existing and kicking total ass—but Inglourious Basterds is jaw-dropping. While the trailers made it seem like a wham-bam action fest, the joy of Tarantino's revisionist history is that most of its fireworks are of the verbal kind. Nearly every scene is set around a table and shrouded with a palpable sense of dread and tension; Basterds is so nerve-wracking that it makes The Hurt Locker feel like a Disney film. It's redundant now to say that Tarantino is a master of performances—after all, it happens to be one of his strongest traits as a director. However, it should be noted that in addition to the inimitable Christoph Waltz, Melanie Laurent (all sad eyes and vengeance as Shoshanna), Michael Fassbender (dapper as Lt. Archie Hicox) and Brad Pitt (in a just world, his work as Lt. Aldo Raine would be getting some Best Actor consideration) all turn in exemplary work. I just watched Basterds again and even liked it more the second time. Maybe after a few more viewings, I'll even agree with Aldo the Apache.
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Post by Admin on Mon Dec 28, 2009 7:28 pm

http://mainlymovies.blogspot.com/2009/12/2009-some-unadorned-lists.html

2009: some unadorned lists

1. A Prophet
2. The Hurt Locker
3. Bright Star
4. White Material
5. Modern Life
6. Sugar
7. Sin Nombre
8. Where the Wild Things Are
9. Fish Tank
10. Only When I Dance

runners-up: Adventureland, Antichrist, Anvil! The Story of Anvil, Avatar, Coraline, Everlasting Moments, A Serious Man, Thirst

Best Director

Jacques Audiard (A Prophet)
Kathryn Bigelow (The Hurt Locker)
Jane Campion (Bright Star)
Claire Denis (White Material/35 Shots of Rum)
Cristian Mungiu and co (Tales from the Golden Age)

Best Actress

Vera Farmiga (Orphan/Up in the Air)
Maria Heiskanen (Everlasting Moments)
Isabelle Huppert (White Material/Home)
Kim Ok-vin (Thirst)
Hilda Peter (Katalin Varga)

runners-up: Abbie Cornish (Bright Star), Penélope Cruz (Broken Embraces), Katie Jarvis (Fish Tank), Maya Rudolph (Away We Go)

Best Actor

Paul Bettany (Creation)
Mark Duplass (Humpday)
Denis Moschitto (Chiko)
Tahar Rahim (A Prophet)
Jeremy Renner (The Hurt Locker)

runners-up: Russell Crowe (State of Play), Robert Downey, Jr (The Soloist), Jamie Foxx (The Soloist), Alex Macqueen (The Hide), Paul Rudd (I Love You, Man), Adam Sandler (Funny People), Michael Stuhlbarg (A Serious Man), Ben Whishaw (Bright Star)

Best Supporting Actress

Nicole Dogue (35 Shots of Rum)
Anne-Marie Duff (Nowhere Boy)
Mo'Nique (Precious)
Lorna Raver (Drag Me to Hell)
Kristin Scott Thomas (Nowhere Boy)

runners-up: Holly Grainger (Awaydays), Rebecca Griffiths (Fish Tank), Cécile de France (Mesrine: Killer Instinct), Blanca Portillo (Broken Embraces)

Best Supporting Actor

Niels Arestrup (A Prophet)
Michael Fassbender (Fish Tank)
Martin Starr (Adventureland)
Michael Stuhlbarg (Afterschool)
Christoph Waltz (Inglourious Basterds)

runners-up: Liam Boyle (Awaydays), Tom Hollander (In the Loop), Paul Schneider (Bright Star)


More categories soon...
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Post by Admin on Mon Dec 28, 2009 10:38 pm

http://media.www.districtchronicles.com/media/storage/paper263/news/2009/12/27/Politics/On.Film.And.On.Point.The.Years.Best.Movies-3851656.shtml

(NNPA) In this sweeping year of change, good films have remained a constant. Looking back on the high-quality movies of 2009, there are memorable stories, outstanding performances, high-drama, romance, lots of laughs and wild thrills. Certain films stand out and will vie for Oscar awards. Some may never win a trophy but still have a lot to offer audiences in theaters, on DVD, or On Demand. The Ten Best Films:

+ "Hunger "(****) - The "troubles" between Catholics and Protestants in Northern Ireland are an enigmatic social issue to most Americans. African heritage director Steve McQueen and his writing partner Enda Walsh put a face on the suffering of the Catholic contingent when they penned and made this riveting film that chronicles the last six weeks of the life of the Irish republican political prisoner and hunger striker Bobby Sands. McQueen's directing debut is intuitive and polished. Michael Fassbender as the emaciated Sands turns in the most challenging male performance of the year.
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Post by Admin on Mon Dec 28, 2009 11:02 pm

http://www.nowtoronto.com/movies/story.cfm?content=173023

Norman Wilner’s Top 10 Movies
By Norman Wilner

The most depressing thing about assembling my top 10 list this year was realizing how many titles on it were last year’s movies. Thanks to the vagaries of theatrical distribution, fully half of these films premiered at the 2008 Cannes Film Festival but didn’t open in Toronto until this year. At least they opened.

2 Hunger (Steve McQueen)

The decade’s most audacious directorial debut turns the 1981 hunger strike at Ireland’s Maze prison into a series of impressionistic tableaux, with Michael Fassbender burning holes in the screen as a self-martyring Bobby Sands. See this on the biggest screen you can find; it’s intended to envelop you.
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Post by Admin on Mon Dec 28, 2009 11:11 pm

http://host.madison.com/entertainment/movies/reviews/article_0b926fb8-be4e-5474-aa13-c1302a969dc5.html

Best movies of 2009
ROB THOMAS | The Capital Times | rthomas@madison.com | Posted: Wednesday, December 23, 2009 5:30 am |

I thought this was a great year for movies, reflected by the fact that my Top 7 list is one of the most diverse in recent years. You’ve got comedies, a searing political drama, a period piece, a riveting documentary, a mob movie and an absolutely kick-ass action movie at the very top of the list. What more could you want?

Check out some honorable mentions on my movie blog “Hey, Watch It!” at 77square.com, along with my list of the worst movies of 2009.

6. “Hunger” — If you liked Michael Fassbender as the upright British commando in “Inglourious Basterds,” be sure to catch his spellbinding performance as an Irish Republican Army prisoner on a hunger strike in this drama. Writer-director Steve McQueen spares the audience none of the horrors (physical or emotional) of the Irish “troubles,” yet his images are so beautifully composed that you can’t look away.
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Post by Admin on Wed Dec 30, 2009 2:09 am

http://community.livejournal.com/watercolor_days/5036.html


“You don’t like them. You don’t really know why you don’t like them. All you know is you find them repulsive."

Summary:
In Nazi-occupied France during World War II, a group of Jewish-American soldiers known as "The Basterds" are chosen specifically to spread fear throughout the Third Reich by scalping and brutally killing Nazis

Thoughts:
A thrilling movie filled with great tension, laughs and fabulous performances. Cristoph Waltz is, like everyone is saying, fantastic and completely steals every scene he’s in while the rest of the cast (except for maybe Eli Roth who honestly has no business doing anything in front of the camera but thankfully his role here is small) turns in solid performances especially Melanie Laurent, Michael Fassbender, Brad Pitt and Diane Kruger. Also this movie made me want strudel and a glass of milk really badly.

Tomatometer:
88% Fresh



“You dance like a black…that’s a compliment.”

Summary:
Everything changes for 15yr old Mia when her mum brings home a new boyfriend.

Thoughts:
This movie made me pretty damn uncomfortable but in a good way. Katie Jarvis is amazing especially considering she’s never acted before she did this film and Michael Fassbender can honestly do no wrong for me after seeing him in this, Inglorious Basterds and Hunger. Their performances elevate what already is a fantastic script and fantastic directing. This film is quiet, intense and realistic with amazing performances from the main actors. See it.

Tomatometer:
92% Fresh
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Post by Admin on Wed Dec 30, 2009 2:39 am

http://seano22.blogspot.com/2009/12/50-greatest-films-of-noughties.html

Tuesday, 29 December 2009
The 50 Greatest Films of the Noughties
So I'm bowing out of the 2000s in style with a round up of all that was good cinematically over the past decade. A lot happened to me personally over the past 10 years - the joys of discovering alchohol and going to university to name but two - but film became more than a mainstay. It became a passion and hopeful focal point for a future career. Peruse the list and see what you think; try not to be consumed by the ordering - that was entirely on a gut level by me. Instead try to focus on the films chosen for selection.

See you in 2010!


39) Hunger – (Steve McQueen, 2008)

- The most striking debut of 2008 was this Maze Prison-set IRA drama, a stunningly eerie, breathtakingly shot collage of painterly images somehow combining together to tell the story of hunger striker Bobby Sands (Michael Fassbender). Wearing his Turner Prize winning background on his sleeve, director McQueen never titillates but always provokes.
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Post by Admin on Wed Dec 30, 2009 2:42 am

http://yourmoviebuddy.blogspot.com/2009/12/2009-year-in-review.html

Tuesday, December 29, 2009
2009 - The Year in Review
Recession-Era Cinema
By R. Kurt Osenlund

"Economy” was the word on everyone's lips this year, and it's the word I kept coming back to when thinking about the year's best films. Whether implicitly or explicitly, in form or in function, in story or in style, my favorite movies reflected 2009's recessionary landscape.


5. HUNGER


There's not a wasted moment, shot or line of dialogue in “Hunger,” a harrowing interpretation of the events that occurred within the walls of Northern Ireland's Maze Prison during the 1981 Irish hunger strike. Masterfully directed and co-written by British artist Steve McQueen, “Hunger” conveys its story not with words, but with visuals, its exposition reserved for one 17-minute conversation that serves as its entire second act and is caught in one continuous take. Nearly every frame is frame-worthy, as the grisly proceedings are captured with staggering aesthetic grace. As strike-initiating martyr Bobby Sands, rising star Michael Fassbender gives a fearless, indelible performance.
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Post by Admin on Thu Dec 31, 2009 3:43 am

http://www.heatvisionblog.com/2009/12/top-movies-of-2009.html

December 30, 2009
Heat Vision's top movies of 2009

No fanfare, just a list of the best movies of 2009 (and a big thanks to Karen Nicoletti for the drawings!):

(4) Inglourious Basterds:
Watch Quentin Tarantino’s reimagining of how World War II really ended a second time and relish the performances. And I don't just mean the great Christoph Waltz as one of the best villains of the decade. Everyone delivers -- from Diane Kruger and Melanie Laurent to Michael Fassbender (who wanted more of Lt. Archie Hicox?) and Til Schweiger (his simmering in the bar is actually hilarious). The movie careens from cinematic brilliance to typical Tarantino over-indulgence, and the over-the-top ending remains frustrating yet maybe on point at the same time, but you can't leave the theater and not be impressed by how this man constructs a scene. (But can someone explain to me what the out-of-the-blue close-ups of the whipped cream are supposed to mean?)
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Post by Admin on Thu Dec 31, 2009 3:59 am

http://filmdiatribe.wordpress.com/2009/12/30/top-10-films-of-2009/

Top 10 Films of 2009

Posted by filmdiatribe on December 30, 2009

2009 was a very good year for film. I’ve seen over 60 films released this year, so you can trust me when I say that this year has been very good. I did find it somewhat difficult to narrow my list down to just the top ten. This list could have easily turned into a top 20 list. My 1 through 4 picks I had no trouble deciding. My 5 through 10 picks could almost be interchangeable. Here is the list of the top 10 films of 2009 counting down from number 10 to number 1.

1. Inglourious Basterds

Quentin Tarantino’s World War Two epic is the best film of 2009. It’s also the most joyous time I had at the movies. I saw this film 3 times in the theatre and I grew to love the film each time I saw it. I admire the sheer audacity of Tarantino to open the film with a twenty-minute dialogue sequence. What Tarantino does with these long dialogue scenes is build suspense. The film is divided into five chapters and each chapter in the film is like a mini movie. All five of the chapters build up and combine into one spectacular final sequence. Christoph Waltz as the Nazi Colonel Hans Landa delivers one of the best performances of the year. Waltz is smart and charming, which makes him even more terrifying. Tarantino has assembled a great ensemble cast. Standouts for me include Michael Fassbender as a British Lieutenant and Melanie Laurent as a Jewish survivor out for revenge. Leave it to Tarantino to make a World War Two movie without a single battle sequence and a climax in a movie theatre. In the end cinema saves the world, as it should be.
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Post by Admin on Thu Dec 31, 2009 4:23 am

http://detheo.free.fr/?p=451

* December 30, 2009

2009 review

This is my usual top 15 of the best films of the year (here is last year’s.):

1. Slumdog Millionaire, directed by Danny Boyle
2. Up, directed by Pete Docter
3. (500) Days of Summer, directed by Marc Webb
4. District 9, directed by Neill Blomkamp / Avatar, directed by James Cameron
5. Milk, directed by Gus Van Sant
6. The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, directed by David Fincher
7. Revolutionary Road, directed by Sam Mendes
8. The Road, directed by John Hillcoat
9. Watchmen, directed by Zack Snyder
10. Inglorious Basterds, directed by Quentin Tarantino
11. The Reader, directed by Stephen Daldry
12. Boy A, directed by John Crowley
13. The Hurt Locker, directed by Kathryn Bigelow
14. Fish Tank, directed by Andrea Arnold
15. Funny People, directed by Judd Apatow

Honorable mentions: Valkyrie, Last Chance Harvey, Doubt, Gran Torino, Linha de Passe, Die Welle, Star Trek, A Complete History of My Sexual Failures, The September Issue, Away We Go, The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus, Where the Wild Things Are, Vincere

Ok, there we go. It’s always hard to put them in order! But I think that’s pretty much it. I have to admit, I thought about putting Avatar first, but in terms of screenwriting, it’s actually a bit weak. And I think I liked District 9 more, but maybe not. I was enthralled by both. So they end up being at the same position, I can’t really pick..
And well yes, I’m a huge sucker for Pixar films, and they outdid themselves again with Up! I keep saying that every year, oddly enough. But the opening sequence of that film… It’s such a wonderful piece, I was literally crushed by it, hearing Michael Giacchino’s score makes me cry every time (actually I never listen to it because I tear up so easily. Yeah I know. Insane, anyone?!). And I dunno, it’s a very hard film to watch, and that’s a first for an animated feature.
(500) Days of Summer is officially my movie crush of the year; it’s almost a personal thing, but it really, really appealed to me and it’s very rare indeed to see films like this one. It’s so tricky to make a film about love; but they pulled it off brillantly.
I was tempted to put Milk higher in this top 15, because that film was so well-made, and I was very affected by it too (on a personal level as well). The film was so compelling and tense at the same time. I love how Gus Van Sant chose to treat this subject, going back and forth between fiction and reality.
Last but not least, Slumdog Millionaire IS the best film of the year: to me it’s the perfect combination of movie magic and virtuoso directing. It’s an incredible story for sure, and Danny Boyle’s enthusiasm is so infectious. I discussed it at greater length here.
Okay I could keep talking about all the other films, but I’ll stop here!
And a quick top 5 of the performances:

Actors
1. Sean Penn, Milk
2. Leonardo DiCaprio, Revolutionary Road
3. Jeremy Renner, The Hurt Locker / Sharlto Copley, District 9
4. Viggo Mortensen, The Road
5. Michael Fassbender, Inglorious Basterds and Fish Tank

Actresses
1. Kate Winslet, Revolutionary Road and The Reader
2. Katie Jarvis, Fish Tank
3. Meryl Streep, Doubt
4. Emma Thompson, Last Chance Harvey
5. Cate Blanchett, The Curious Case of Benjamin Button

Voilà!
I had written this massive post about the Golden Globes but Wordpress crashed and now I am waaay too lazy to write it again… But coming soon: 2010 preview and the award season continues, of course!
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Post by Admin on Thu Dec 31, 2009 4:31 am

http://exexposure.blogspot.com/2009/12/best-films-of-decade_28.html

Monday, December 28, 2009
The Best Films of the Decade
It's an unimaginably difficult task to create a best films of the decade list for a film lover, but it's what had to be done. I initially created a list of 130 movies I thought were the best of the past decade, and then I gradually worked it down to 25 which are the ones you see here. Once I got down to about 40, it got extremely hard to eliminate some of them (like The Bourne Ultimatum and The Royal Tenenbaums), but most of those can be seen in the Honourable Mentions section at the end. At any rate, here are what I think are the 25 best films of the last ten years.

7. Inglourious Basterds

Released: 2009
Starring: Brad Pitt, Christoph Waltz, Diane Kruger, Eli Roth, Michael Fassbender, Mélanie Laurent, Daniel Brühl, Til Schweiger, B.J. Novak, Mike Myers, Denis Menochet
Written and directed by Quentin Tarantino

Want to know what Quentin Tarantino doesn't give a hoot about? Accurately depicting history. Well, to an extent that is. I won't give away the ending in case you haven't seen the film, but by the end you'll see what I'm talking about. But that's not what makes this movie so good. This big, bold, audacious, epic World War II film set in Nazi-occupied France throughout the early 40s tells multiple stories, told through five chapters (with names like "A German Night in Paris" and "Revenge of the Giant Face") and set up as if it's an old-time spaghetti western that just happens to take place during WWII. Tarantino did a lot this decade - the Kill Bill movies, Death Proof, directing the fifth season finale of CSI - but this film will definitely stand as his best work from these last ten years. The story you probably know: a small group of Jewish soldiers, led by a very charismatic and very hilarious Brad Pitt as Lt. Aldo Raine, embark on a mission to kill and scalp every Nazi they can get a hold of. Then, with the help of some Brits, they begin Operation Kino which is to blow up the theatre in which a large amount of big-time Nazis are going to be due to a major Nazi propaganda film premiering. The theatre's owner (Laurent), however, has plans of her own to burn the place down. So with all this going on, Tarantino has concocted one giant film full of his signature dialogue and brutal violence. As the reviews can attest, no Tarantino film is universally praised since not everyone really understands Tarantino and his style, but from Christoph Waltz's glowing performance as Hans Landa for which he deserves an Oscar, to that hilariously and brilliantly placed David Bowie song, Inglourious Basterds just may be Tarantino's masterpiece.
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http://my.cineplex.com/showbiz-news/2009/12/simply-best-top-10-films-2009/

Simply the Best: Top 10 Films of 2009

Posted on Wednesday, Dec. 30, 2009
by Andrea Miller and Emma Badame - Cineplex Entertainment
Top 10 films

There was no escaping those blue aliens, transforming cars, intergalactic hotties or angst-ridden vampires this year but when the hype died down and box office business is taken out of the equation, what films rose to the top in 2009?

Take a look at our personal lists of the 10 best films of the year and share your favourites in the comments!

Andrea's Picks:

Inglourious Basterds
Let’s not mince words: when he’s good, he’s good. Makes-you-forget-he-sometimes-wears-those-weird-flame-sleeved-blazers good. QT was firing on all cylinders with his historical revisionist murder-mystery-drama that pits the Nazi-scalping Basterds against the Third Reich in an engrossing, bloody, intelligent and winkingly funny example of some of his best work. Much has been made of Brad Pitt’s performance and there’s no denying he plays Lt. Aldo Raine with a certain well-earned smugness but Christoph Waltz owns the screen as methodical and serpentine Col. Hans Landa – one of those perfectly formed characters that demands all of your attention. An ensemble cast that inhabit their roles with abandon and a typically twisty Tarantino storyline – complete with a movie-within-a-movie b-story – this epic ride takes its time building up to the looming moment the audience can see peaking on the horizon and when it does…well, you were warned.


(500) Days of Summer
Can a movie that unapologetically wears its hipper-than-thou musical influences on its cardigan sleeves and has no issues with throwing a non-sequitur choreographed dance number smack-dab into the mix actually be any good? If you’re newbie director Marc Webb and you’ve got Zooey Deschanel and Joseph Gordon-Levitt as your romantic leads, the answer is yes. Sure, it’s precious and doesn’t hold back from piling on the cute – like when Tom (Levitt) and Summer (Deschanel) traipse through IKEA room models playing happy husband and wife – but delve beyond the Smiths references and Pixies on the karaoke machine and a more honest, even borderline-cynical look at love and relationships emerges. Yes, the soundtrack is constantly calling attention to itself but it’s the performances, dialogue and thorny notion that love is a bruising business that really strikes a chord.

Adventureland
Nostalgia is a powerful emotion that can evoke the most splendid of memories or haunt someone who thought the worst of it was over. Greg Mottola’s '80s-set Adventureland smartly uses that looking-back sensibility to get to the heart of the matter, ensuring anyone who has experienced post-university/college blues – so wait, I’m an adult now? – will immediately relate to big-hearted, too-smart-for-his-own-good protagonist James (a pitch-perfect Jesse Eisenberg). After his dad takes a big pay cut at work, James is forced to cancel his planned summer in NYC and slug it out with fellow misfits working at the local amusement park, including Martin Starr of “Freak and Geeks” fame and a remarkably mature Kristen Stewart as James' equally clever crush. This sweet, though not cloying, look at those last hazy days of adolescence before life kicks in aptly romanticizes the fleeting nature of youth while happily bidding it goodbye.

Hunger
Michael Fassbender gives an outstanding performance as Bobby Sands, the real-life IRA prisoner who staged a hunger strike in an effort to have his fellow brothers-in-arms recognized as political prisoners. This isn’t your typical white-washed biopic that focuses on the subject’s triumphs and largely sidesteps their vices – this provocative feature stays with you regardless of where you sit politically, which is no small feat. One particular single-take scene between a reedy Sands and his priest (Liam Cunningham) epitomizes the film’s deliberately slow pacing and effective use of tension, making audiences feel as if they’re watching a play and experiencing the same intimate emotions that come with that medium. A debut for the ages by experimental filmmaker Steve McQueen that should have made Fassbender a much bigger star.


Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call New Orleans
This non-remake’s place on my best-of-the-year list even seems like a non-sequitur to me. A loopy Werner Herzog dramedy-thriller starring a properly off-his-face Nicolas Cage, featuring hallucinated iguanas and rapper Xhibit – what the what? But such is Herzog’s mad power. Here he weaves a gonzo/arty film that takes place in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina where coke-addicted cop Terrence McDonagh (Cage) is trying to solve a multiple homicide while his drug habit escalates with the same ferocity as his gambling debts. Herzog never lets the audience have complete faith that what they’re watching is actually happening outside of Terrence’s fried cerebellum but that level of ambiguity is part of the fun. One thing’s for sure, you didn’t see another movie like this in 2009.
Top 10 films

Emma's Picks:

An Education
A script by Nick Hornby and a stunningly talented cast that includes Carey Mulligan, Alfred Molina, Emma Thompson, Dominic Cooper, Olivia Williams, and Peter Sarsgaard? I couldn't see this one fast enough. The film, directed by Lone Scherfig and winner of the Audience Choice Award at the 2009 Sundance Film Festival, is essentially the coming-of-age tale of Jenny, a bright, young 16-year-old girl (a star-making turn by the utterly luminous Mulligan) torn between following the dull but safe path of academia or throwing caution to the wind and following her dreams of a more exciting life. On the cusp of adulthood, she finds herself in the midst of a romance with a man almost twice her age which makes her question who she is and where she's going. Set against the backdrop of a post-war but pre-Swinging Sixties London, the film manages to avoid wallowing in nostalgia and instead engrosses you in a simple but powerful tale of a girl and a society on the brink of extreme change.

Fifty Dead Men Walking
"Based on a True Story" can be a warning sign for overwrought drama and emotionally manipulative set pieces but sometimes it manages to sew the seeds for a genuine emotional connection to the film and to the characters within. Canadian director Kari Skogland has managed to find that highly sought after connection in this film based on Martin McGartland's terrifying real life experiences. Martin, played with extreme skill by Jim Sturgess, is a young man living in Belfast in the late 1980s who is recruited by the British police force to spy on the Irish Republican Army. The title of the film refers to the number of lives Martin is potentially saving with the information he provides them, at great risk to himself. Each scene of the film builds on the tension laid bare in the one before, ratcheting the tension up to an almost uncomfortable level before it snaps, leaving you emotionally exhausted but in definite awe of the story that has unfolded in front of you. An amazing film that should not be missed.

Fish Tank
Andrea Arnold’s searing look into working-class Britain isn't for everyone. Seen through the eyes of a troubled teenage girl, the film is at once repulsive and engrossing, like a secret you’re dying to find out but are possibly better off not knowing. It follows Mia, a tough, angry young woman forced to grow up far too quickly who uses music and dance to escape her alcoholic mother. The premise might seem clichéd at first glance but this film rises above its formulaic nature, thanks especially to extremely adept direction by Arnold and harrowing performances by newcomer Katie Jarvis and the extremely talented Michael Fassbender, and presents something truly unique, gritty and real. This one will haunt you long after the lights have gone up.


A Single Man
In his directorial debut, it's perhaps unsurprising that Tom Ford has created one of the most beautiful films audiences will see this year. The designer and former head of Gucci has more than just a flair for costumes and manages to display an uncanny ability to evoke emotion and meaning in every aspect of set, screen, note of music and dialogue. That's not to say he doesn't manage to bring his own sense of style to the table, in fact fashionistas everywhere will be hard pressed not to drool when they catch a glimpse of the impeccable '60s garb. At the very heart of the film, though, is an amazing performance from the ever-reliable Colin Firth. As a professor mourning the death of his lover, the English actor has never been better. Add to that the fantastic supporting cast of Julianne Moore, Nicolas Hoult and Matthew Goode and it's plain to see why this is one film that will never go out of fashion.

Star Trek

Lest you think I avoided the big ticket items all together this past year, fear not! I left the best for last. The most fun I had at the movies this year happened to come courtesy of one J.J. Abrams and his Star Trek franchise re-boot. Thanks to near-perfect casting, a script that was more entertaining than it had any right to be, and special effects that stood out and impressed without overshadowing the story, Abrams and his team hit it right out of the park. In Chris Pine and Zachary Quinto, the characters of Kirk and Spock were given new life and supporting turns from equally well-cast Zoe Saldana, Simon Pegg, John Cho, Karl Urban and Anton Yelchin provided the icing on the already overloaded and tasty Trekkie cake. Audiences clapped and cheered throughout the film when I saw it in the theatre, and I clapped and cheered right along side them. For pure movie magic and enjoyment, nothing came close for me to beating the boys from Starfleet in 2009.
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Post by Admin on Thu Dec 31, 2009 4:34 pm

http://wweek.com/editorial/3608/13527/

The Power And The Gloury

Let’s argue about the 10 best movies of the year.

BY WW SCREEN STAFF | 503-243-2122

[December 30th, 2009]

Some people think critical top-10 lists are a self-indulgent waste of time. Those people will probably want to turn to a different section of the paper.

Here in WW’s screen-watching quadrant, we felt that a year filled with this many arresting and divisive films deserved more than one inventory of movies to rent, revisit and debate. So we asked each of our four regular contributors to submit a list of what was really worth watching. In the following pages, you’ll also find each of our candidates for the best film of the decade. And on wweek.com, we’ve prepared a rundown of the year’s best television, as well as a three-part podcast in which we break down the flicks still further, while drinking.

We think there’s never been a better time to argue about movies. We hope you agree.

Aaron Mesh

1. Inglourious Basterds

It kills Hitler and (of course) it does not kill Hitler. It offers what movies provide all the time—wish fulfillment—while undercutting the foundations those other movies assume. It is a prank. It is a curse. It is an imprecatory psalm. Name me a movie that tries anything close. I dare you.


2. The Hurt Locker

The horror of Iraq summed up in a single image: a purpose-maddened explosives expert trying to defuse a reluctant suicide bomber, then crying, “I’m sorry!” as he runs for his life.

3. A Serious Man

You want God should answer your prayers?ask the Coens. You should pray thanks he doesn’t.

4. Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call New Orleans

Nicolas Cage plays gator bait in an addiction noir that showcases Werner Herzog’s outsized affection for damaged people.

5. Nightwatching

Most of the city never got the chance to see Tim from The Office dressed as Rembrandt, performing cunnilingus. Shame.

6. Duplicity

This is the movie Up in the Airmight have been, a satire of predatory corporate chicanery combined with a romance between characters just a little bit smarter than the crowds. It flopped, naturally.

7. Observe and Report

The worst impulses of homogenized American Eagle culture get an airing out. Seth Rogen looks just like Glenn Beck in this movie.

8. In the Loop

Movies I Underrated, Part 1: I disliked the cynicism of its politics, but I can’t deny that in a year of fine British filmmaking, this entry was the best—and the funniest.

9. Adventureland

Movies I Underrated, Part 2: Yes, the ending is too forgiving to be lifelike, but maybe life should be more like this comedy.

10. Moon

Science fiction with the special effects where they belong: in the unrestrained behavior of human actors (Sam Rockwell, Sam Rockwell and Sam Rockwell).

Chris Stamm

1. Inglourious Basterds

Perhaps the only film released this year that our fanboy heirs and academic offspring will still be arguing about when movies are beamed as holograms into our tiny pod-homes.


2. The Headless Woman

Lucrecia Martel’s movie-as-daydream is a quicksand trap of eerie suggestion and elliptical discomfiture. Surrender and sink into it.

3. Silent Light

Carlos Reygadas finally delivers on the promise of Japón with this patient study of melancholy Mennonites whose faith in God is matched, honored and answered by Reygadas’ glorious images.

4. Hunger

Michael Fassbender delivers the performance of the year in Steve McQueen’s hypnotic, brutal, unflinching take on Bobby Sands’ suicidal hunger strike.


5. Humpday

Most lives are a subtle push and pull of contentment and nagging disappointment, but so few movies do this everyday struggle justice. Humpday is this year’s Old Joy or Happy-Go-Lucky: a small and perfect snapshot of the way we get by.

6. Adventureland

Director Greg Mottola and star Jesse Eisenberg nail post-collegiate weltschmerz once and for all in this ode to moving back home and failing to put that diploma to use. The sequel, in which Eisenberg freelances for a weekly paper and drinks too much, should be wonderful.

7. Summer Hours

A film about death that makes me happy to be alive, and even a little bit less afraid of my final destination. More movies like this, please.

8. Moon

Ladies and gentlemen, we are floating in space. It’s sad and lonely and insane out here, and Moon is solace for those who’ve noticed that the body is the scariest of all possible conveyances through the stars.

9. You, the Living

According to Ingmar Bergman, Roy Andersson makes “the best commercials in the world.” He also occasionally makes amazing feature films. His latest consists of a series of meticulously staged vignettes that play like advertisements for the one thing all of us already have in abundance: crushing despair. It’s a blast.

10. Tie: Avatar and The Hurt Locker

Both gunned for profundity and missed, but ex-spouses Kathryn Bigelow and James Cameron made the most exhilarating roller-coaster movies of 2009.

AP Kryza

1. The Hurt Locker

A nerve-shredding look at the toll combat stress takes on a bomb squad in Iraq, The Hurt Locker is a career-defining work from action maven Kathryn Bigelow, and by far the best film about the Iraq war.

2. In the Loop

The funniest, most-acid tongued political satire of the decade.

3. Up

Pixar turns the absurd story of a cantankerous old man, a floating house, kaleidoscopic birds, a lonesome kid and talking dogs into the most poignant and endearing film of the year.

4. Moon

Freshman director Duncan Jones (son of Ziggy Stardust) blasts into orbit with the most satisfying case of Space Madness since Ren and Stimpy.

5. Inglourious Basterds

Even despite its flaws (I’m looking at you, David Bowie), Tarantino’s extremely revisionist World War II fantasy is a triumph of Hitchcockian suspense and cinematic bravery.


6. The Informant!

Steven Soderbergh crafts the most entertaining film of his schizophrenic career by playing the whistle-blower story for big laughs wresting from Matt Damon a giddily sociopathic turn.

7. Drag Me to Hell

Sam Raimi’s departure from arachnid superheroes is a frighteningly funny horror yarn that reminds us that tossing a Three Stooges mentality into a story of menacing demons is worth its weight in goo.

8. Goodbye Solo

Director Ramin Bahrani (Man Push Cart, Chop Shop) goes three for three with a heartbreakingly earnest story of a Senegalese cabbie in North Carolina whose quest to save a suicidal old man offers joy and sorrow as what they are—everyday realities.

9. The Hangover

Todd Phillips’ sophomoric and crude comedy is sure to become a late-night staple, a pitch-perfect comedy that’s unafraid to whack a baby in the head when necessary.

10. Chocolate

In a year full of big-budget giant robots and blue Pocahonti, this low-budget (and decidedly goofy) Thai flick proves the best special effect is a fearless female martial artist with gonzo stunt work.

Alistair Rockoff

1. Two Lovers

James Gray’s hypnotic chamber piece about Generation Y is even better than Minority Report(my Best of the Decade), but this way you get an extra movie recommendation.

2. Confessions of a Shopaholic

They tried to make her go to rehab, but she said no, no, no: Isla Fisher’s shopaholic rivals Nicolas Cage’s bad lieutenant as America’s most lovable addict.

3. Revanche

A timeless Austrian morality play that refuses to go where you want it to, except perhaps into the woods.

4. Still Walking

Hirokazu Koreeda updates Tokyo Story for the modern era, distilling all the quiet anguish of a family reunion into two hours of harsh judgments, summer sweat and home cooking.

5. Coraline

Define “avatar”: Stop-motion animation plus 3-D glasses shrinks you down, not just into a child, but into the doll you played with as a child.

6. Fantastic Mr. Fox

Before directing Coraline, Henry Selick initiated another stop-motion project with Wes Anderson: this witty Roald Dahl adaptation about Homo sapiens and other feral species.

7. Gentlemen Broncos

Mormon filmmakers Jared and Jerusha Hess offer a Very New Testament of Jesus Christ, so don’t slam the door: It’s wonderfully adolescent and gooey, with Sam Rockwell as a yeast lord from outer space.

8. Brothers

Ignore the trashy and misleading trailer for Jim Sheridan’s drama, which addresses American military trauma with heartfelt simplicity.

9. World’s Greatest Dad

Robin Williams has a midlife crisis and learns to be a serious man in this raunchy drama that was falsely advertised as comedy.

10. The Baader Meinhof Complex

Stifled by the chauvinist doll’s house of ’60s middle-class Germany, a couple of Marxist hausfraus take on the Fatherland at gunpoint, with epic results.
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Post by Admin on Thu Dec 31, 2009 4:39 pm

http://movies.insidepulse.com/2009/12/31/r0btrains-top-10-movies-of-2009/

R0BTRAIN’s Best of 2009
By Robert Sutton - December 31, 2009

I’m going to come right out and say that 2009 was a flat out great year for movies. That’s not saying it was perfect, and there was plenty of mediocrity and good, old-fashioned awfulness to go around, especially when it came to blockbuster entertainment, but on the other hand, I can’t remember the last time that so many movies competed to be in my top 10.

There were films that hit cinemas all throughout the year that I would have sworn were going to make it to the end when saw them (Watchmen, The Hurt Locker, Drag Me to Hell), but when it came time to put this list together many of them just ended up falling by the wayside in favor of movies that really hit me where it counted.

Looking back on ’09, I just simply had an outstanding time if I was in a theater. It’s no secret that I’m a giant fan of genre films, and they were simply everywhere this year. Everywhere I looked, an awesome new Horror film (Trick r’ Treat), Martial Arts flick (Ip Man), Action thriller (Taken), Crime picture (Public Enemies) or Sci-Fi movie (Moon) was ready to blow my mind, and directors I’ve loved in the past (Sam Raimi, John Woo, Kathryn Bigelow, Michael Mann, Quentin Tarantino, James Cameron) all brought the thunder this year and reminded me why I decided to be a fan of their work in the first place. If you were looking for quality bad ass cinema, in 2009 your cup indeed runneth over.

It wasn’t just the wily old veterans that got the job done this year either. Some new voices came on the scene that forced us to take notice in 2009, and by the time their next project hits the screen I’m sure they’ll make an even bigger splash then they were able to make during their debuts. I’m pretty certain that the name Neill Blomkamp wasn’t on anyone’s radar prior to this year, but we’re all wishing he’d gotten the chance to do that Halo movie he was working on with Peter Jackson, and I can’t tell you how exciting it was to get blindsided by the awesome projects of directors I’d never really heard of before, such as Ti West, Scott Sanders and Ruben Fleischer.

If we’re lucky, 2010 will be able to keep up the momentum, and or at least make a nice showing of it. With movies like Iron Man 2, Kick Ass, Robin Hood, and The Expendables on the upcoming slate, I couldn’t be more excited, and just like with this past year, I’m sure there’ll be a ton of surprises along the way. If I end up with only half the movies I ended up loving these past 12 months, I’ll be a happy guy.

So without further ado, these are the ten I’d like to remember 2009 by.

3. Inglourious Basterds

I wonder how many unsuspecting audience members got their minds blown by the end of Quentin Tarantino’s latest opus. The funhouse given to us by QT is a marvelous romp that doesn’t care if you think you know all there is to know about WWII or not. This is the war seen through the eyes of Tarantino the movie lover; equal parts classic macho Action film, French New –wave art film, and giant Spaghetti Western. Like the best of the Spaghetti Westerns, The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly, the film may play fast and loose with history, and it may take its time getting where it wants to go, but for sheer operatic entertainment value, the movie is difficult to be beaten.

I’m pretty sure Brad Pitt’s Aldo the Apache and Eli Roth’s Bear Jew are going to be characters that will be as indelible to QT’s filmography as Pulp Fiction’s Vincent Vega and or the Bride from Kill Bill, but like so many war films, Basterds is peppered with great characters outside of its top-lining stars. Christoph Waltz’s Hans Landa is the best villain of any movie this year, Mélanie Laurent is a revelation as the revenge seeking Shosanna Dreyfus, and I could go on and on about turns from Daniel Brühl, Til Schweiger, and Michael Fassbender. All are packed in this dizzying epic that does what the best of Tarantino has always done, keep you laughing one minute and then on the edge of your seat the next.
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Post by Admin on Thu Dec 31, 2009 4:45 pm

http://inleaguewithpaton.blogspot.com/2009/12/review-of-decade-part-1-100-best-films.html

61. Hunger (Steve McQueen, 2008)
Visual artist Steve McQueen made a hard hitting impact with his debut feature, one which conveyed the degradation and brutality of the Maze prison both immediately before and during the hunger strikes in torrid detail. The film is not presented as a conventional narrative – but rather juxtaposes its scenes of desperation and rage against a crucial and brilliant central scene, in which Bobby Sands (convincingly portrayed by Michael Fassbender) discusses the prospect of the strike with a Priest. The ghostly, chilling voice of Margaret Thatcher hovers over the whole piece – and there was understandable anger that the film risked sympathising with terrorists by refusing to show the complete picture. Yet McQueen’s film is not even about the complete picture – it is about the violence, rage and inhumanity of these horrendous conditions.
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Post by Admin on Thu Dec 31, 2009 4:55 pm

http://yrfilms.blogspot.com/2009/12/top-10-of-2009_31.html

Thursday, December 31, 2009
TOP 10 of 2009

TOP 10 Films & Directors
01. Agora, Alejandro Amenábar
02. A Prophet, Jacques Audiard
03. The White Ribbon, Michael Haneke
04. The Hurt Locker, Kathryn Bigelow
05. I Am Love, Luca Guadagnino
06. Broken Embraces, Pedro Almodóvar
07. Up in the Air, Jason Reitman
08. Fish Tank, Andrea Arnold
09. Mother, Bong Joon-ho
10. An Education, Lone Scherfig

TOP 10 Performances, Female
Leading & Supporting in Alphabetical Order
PENÉLOPE CRUZ - "BROKEN EMBRACES"
MARION COTILLARD - "NINE"
VERA FARMIGA - "UP IN THE AIR"
KIM HYE-JA - "MOTHER"
KATIE JARVIS - "FISH TANK"
CAREY MULLIGAN - "AN EDUCATION"
MICHELLE PFEIFFER - "CHERI"
TILDA SWINTON - "I AM LOVE"
AUDREY TAUTOU - "COCO AVANT CHANEL"
RACHEL WEISZ - "AGORA"

TOP 10 Performances, Male
Leading & Supporting in Alphabetical Order
JEFF BRIDGES - "MEN WHO STARE AT GOATS"
GEORGE CLOONEY - "UP IN THE AIR"
MICHAEL FASSBENDER - "FISH TANK"
COLIN FIRTH - "A SINGLE MAN"
ALFRED MOLINA - "AN EDUCATION"
CHRISTOPHER PLUMMER - "THE LAST STATION"
TAHAR RAHIM - "A PROPHET"
JEREMY RENNER - "THE HURT LOCKER"
PETER SARSGAARD - "AN EDUCATION"
CHRISTOPH WALTZ - "INGLORIOUS BASTERDS"
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Post by Admin on Fri Jan 01, 2010 2:18 am

http://bitchinfilmreviews.com/top-tens-of-the-decade-2009/

Top Tens of the Decade: 2009
December 31st, 2009 by Blake

For being a year where it seemed like nothing outstanding hit theatres, I really had a hard time narrowing down the list of the most memorable films. In some of the lists before, I hated films so badly, they were listed because of the visceral reaction I have every time I pass them in Blockbuster. Fortunately, this year, it’s hard to remember a film that I just hated (besides you 2012). Standouts include Zombieland, Moon, The Hangover, (500) Days of Summer, An Education. There are a few that I haven’t managed to see (and probably won’t until they show up on DVD), like Up in the Air, and A Single Man, that I feel would probably make this list. However, I’m pretty satisfied with the way it is now. I’ve reviewed almost all of these, so I’m just putting in ecxerpts of my reviews. Click on the movie poster for the full review. And check out the lists from 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, and 2008.

– This is one brutal, daring film. Going into the theater, I worried I wouldn’t quite ‘get’ everything since I don’t know much about the stife in Ireland. But you don’t need a backstory in order to ‘get’ this film. After 15 minutes, you’ll be as involved with the story as the characters are. The tension felt can be cut with a knife. Never has a ninety minute film gone by so quickly. Despite the harshness of the reality Hunger is able to create, the film never falters from being perfectly balanced.

– At first I was underwhelmed, but as my buddy pointed out, Tarantino likes to make you think you’re getting one thing, and then give you another. And it takes at least two viewings to get to his point. The dialogue was witty (except the self-righteous moments, ‘In France, we respect directors…’ yawn), the acting was great (I’m looking at you Michael Fassbender and Christoph Waltz). The biggest misstep was casting BJ Novak.
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