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Movies of 2007- A Year in Review

Posted: Tue, 18th Dec 2007, 7:58am

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Atom

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Rating: +2

Whew! What a year for movies! From highly-anticipated to the hundreds of sequels to the literal tens of threequels, it's been one heck of a movie season and year. Over this time I've been met with some real surprises, both refreshing and sickening, and found some real gems. So I decided to post some up, along with my Oscar predictions. So here it goes, my top ten movies of the year first.
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1. Gone Baby Gone

Gripping, perfectly-directed and smartly-written, Gone Baby Gone proves Ben Affleck's worth as both a writer and director and confirms his little brother, Casey, as a serious actor. I absolutely loved this movie and have yet to find one that closely rivals it (besides the number 2 on my list) in quality. With a stand-out cast including a top-of-his-game Ed Harris and Morgan Freeman, this detective-story piece is narrowly told and unfolds in an unexpected way that had me genuinely shocked by the climax. Without giving away any spoilers, the ending goes to a blank screen from a long, drawn-out 2 or so minute-long shot of the protagonist thinking about the gifts and consequences of his decision at the end of the film. There's almost a moment of "was it right?" that is so eerie and told without any 'in-your-face' explanation.

The film is great, plain and simple. The cinematography is a fair mix of Oscar bravado, epic shots and guerilla handycam that makes for great moviemaking. The editing is slick and still slow at the rights times and keeps an even pace, all leading to what I would consider a clear Oscar contender for Best Director, Best Actor, Best Screen Adaptation, and possibly even Best Picture. 10/10
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2. No Country for Old Men

Powerful, poignant, and all-around badass. Those are really the only words to describe this modern Western epic. Set in my home state, this movie is a tour-de-force of gunslinging, murder, drugs, and corruption that does so with a mint on your theater seat and a "please" and "thank you". An expected champ, 'No Country' hits all the right marks and does so even without fast editing or a soundtrack at all. Supremely shot and peculiarly cast, this movie somehow finds its niche in the Texan drama and holds on. I wouldn't be surprised in any way if this film gets best picture. I'm holding onto 'Gone' because it greatly overexceeds almost all facets, but if there ever was an equal or close second this would be it. This movie is a must-see. A fantastic work that really says it all:

"You can't stop what's coming." 9/10
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3. Michael Clayton

The truth can be adjusted. The slogan for the movie says it all in this great work that mixes overcomplicated corporate intrigue with Michael Clayton (George Clooney) and a stark raving mad and yet brilliant Tom Wilkinson's personal lives that all come together within a 4-day span. This one had me sweating along with all of the stories that wrenched the mind and amounted to nothing in a funny way but worked as a movie. This movie was solid all-around, but Clooney and Wilkinson's acting outclasses the production values, which are somewhat understated. Make no mistake, this was one of the best films in a very long time and by far the smartest corporate/law movie I've ever seen. Definitely worth a watch. 8/10
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4. Disturbia

What an amazingly-pleasant surprise this film was indeed. While many criticized it as an over-commercialized trash version of 'Rear Window', this movie did something. It genuinely captured what it's like to be a teenager stuck at home (before all the killing stuff). The movie spends the first half explaining this kid and what he does, and it's all very John Hughes-esque. And who else to do it? The breakout star Shia Labeouf; who proves himself both a skiddish and hilarious 18-year-old and a total killer-opponent badass all in one sitting. This movie was the perfect horror movie for me, and I hate horror movies to no end. It kept me on the edge of my seat the entire time, was fun and light-hearted at times, and turned to completely 'scare-the-crap-outta-you' points that left me almost quivering. No joke. All-the-while, it remained grounded in an almost entirely-believable reality that was, well, surreal. I couldnt've expected any more than I got from 'Disturbia' or the new and fantastic Shia Labeouf, and that's why this is #3. 7/10
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5. The Bourne Ultimatum

What can I say? Bourne is back. This time without the motion-sickness and with double the punch and highlights of the previous two films. Matt Damon proves finally that he might be the physically tougher one of him and Ben Affleck. Maybe not. We'll see. 8/10
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6. Knocked Up

This movie was flat-out hilarious, and there's no real way to go into depth without massive quoting beginning so I'll just call it like it is. Hilarious. What's more, it mixes superb and refreshingly 'quality' cinematography and directing into the equation and (unlike an equally as funny 'Superbad') finds a real humanity in how relationships work and people endure. It made me cry. Well, of laughter, but it still has a strong message. 7/10
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7. Hot Fuzz

Who knew? With witty batter, disgusting gore, and thousands of bullets, 'Hot Fuzz' found it's way into my heart. A dream editing job, this movie mixes the bizarre with the downright awesome and gift-wraps it with a side of English-kickass that was 'cool' to say the least. The first 'cool' film I've seen since the Matrix. (Well, maybe 'Reloaded'.) And I'm glad for it. Another top-notch movie of 2007. 7/10
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8. American Gangster

While I was excited about this one, I couldn't help but feel a little cheated out of the 'epic-ness' Ridley Scott projects in certain works (Gladiator, namely) and the larger story I longed for from the trailers. This movie was solid all-around and deserves Russel Crowe an Oscar nod, but I don't see this movie winning anything real big or really deserving it. While I enjoyed this movie, I found others that outclassed it so bad, combined with my high expectations, that I was left with some emptiness. Still, production design, acting, and editing get this the #8 spot on my list. 6/10
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9. 300

Why is this on my list? One reason. FOR SPARTAAAAA!!!!!!!!!! 6/10
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10. Superbad/Hot Rod

With more raunch and romp and less reasoning than 'Knocked Up', 'Superbad' remains tied for the funniest movie I've seen this year with KU and 'Hot Rod'. With tight and solid technicals and foul-mouthed fun, 'Superbad' defines the not-so-average highschool experience with a bum's grace and comes out on top. Similarly, 'Hot Rod' takes the less-believable route with the stuntman-extraodinaire Rod and proves to me that, when given a chance, these SNL guys may have something. Something I passed over in theaters, 'Hot Rod' is a memorable, joke-a-minute party that throws back to the days of 'A Night at the Roxbury' in style and packs solid writing and dated locations that make perfect production design. Rod gets extra brownie points for remaining as funny without throwing thousands of harsh words out, and being far, far less grounded in the now. 'Superbad' 6/10, 'Hot Rod' 6/10.

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Road to the Oscars
So who's who in Oscar land this year? Here's what I'm hoping for:

Best Picture - 'No Country for Old Men' or 'Gone Baby Gone'. It could go either way, depending on which "indie" side the Academy wants to take. I'd be equally happy with both, but my bets are on 'Men' right now.
Best Director - Ben Affleck, 'Gone Baby Gone'. There's no question or second-guessing in my mind about this one. Forget the typical Coen Brothers or Ridley Scott, if Affleck is nominated I'll be certain he'll win it. And he should. In his debut, even.
Best Actor - Casey Affleck, 'Gone Baby Gone'. That shrimpy kid brother of Benny Boy, who knew? I'd be surprised if he doesn't get it.
Best Actress - Angelina Jolie, 'A Mighty Heart' Frankly, there hasn't been much here to compete with.
Best Supporting Actor - This is a tougher, as there are two clear winners. If there ever was possible an Oscar tie, it would be here. Javier Bardem, 'No Country for Old Men'; Tommy Lee Jones, 'No Country for Old Men'; Tom Wilkinson, 'Michael Clayton'. My bets are on Wilkinson, but I'd really like all to win.
Best Supporting Actress - Tilda Swinton, 'Michael Clayton'. Played with an unparalleled cruelness and vivacity. The clear frontrunner in my opinion is her.


And finally, to fill my expectations, I was relieved this year to know that 'Transformers' lived up to what I wanted and pushed it further. "Michael Bay Must Continue, No Matter The Cost!" smile

More to come!
Posted: Tue, 18th Dec 2007, 9:57am

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Simon K Jones

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I can't help but think I need to get the cinema more. I've only seen two of these movies, one of which was on DVD.

In 2008, I intend to go to the cinema more regularly! There, I've said it.


Anyway, the two best films I've seen in 2007 are:

Sunshine - best science fiction film since Starship Troopers (although totally different). The first two thirds are actually completely, totally flawless for me. The last third takes an unexpected turn which turns the film into something else entirely. It's very well done, but in some ways I wish they'd had the resolve to stick with the 'hard' sci-fi. Great stuff either way. Also the best visual effects of the year.

Fingerman: Dr London and the Triangle Force - Yes, I mean it. This low, low-budget, suppposedly 'amateur' production is right up there on my 'best films of 2007' list. It might not have the polish of big budget movies, but it's got heart, and it's quite ridiculously entertaining. I can't wait for it to get some kind of release so that everyone else can see it.

Check out my Fingerman review.

We've also got an interview with the director.
Posted: Tue, 18th Dec 2007, 10:21am

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A Pickle

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I found Sunshine to be VERY similar to George Clooney's Solaris...
Posted: Tue, 18th Dec 2007, 10:40am

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Simon K Jones

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Except good?

smile
Posted: Tue, 18th Dec 2007, 10:51am

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SilverDragon7

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Here's my list of movies from this year (in no particular order)...

Superbad (ok I put this on the top because it makes me laugh every time)
Live Free or Die Hard - More modren then the last, more fun.
Transformers - 3D put to the max - just awsome
American Gangster - Great Acting, great everything
The Bourne Ultimatum - An awesome ending to the Trilogy (I never read the books).
Ocean's 13 - Just as fun as the first two.
Hot Fuzz - Funny, Gore-y and Action Packed? Hell yes.
28 Weeks Later
300 - I think it's very good.
Ratatouille - One of the only new animated movies I would suggest to anyone.
Surfs Up - The other only animated movie I would suggest to anyone.
Children of Men
War - Guns and Martail Arts? Jet Li and Jason Statham? Awesome.
Shooter - At first I didn't know what to think, but then it turned out to be very good.
Next - I wish I could see into my furture sad.

EDIT: Added more to my list, I'm sure it's not all of them...

Last edited Wed, 19th Dec 2007, 9:49pm; edited 1 times in total.

Posted: Tue, 18th Dec 2007, 1:00pm

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Frosty G

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This was a great year for movies.

My List.

1. The Bourne Ultimatum - I can't find anything I don't love about this movie. Frankly, I loved Supremacy and the filming style Greengrass used. After watching the perfected Ultimatum, I can't watch films like Casino Royale. I find it too boring and slow.

2. No Country for Old Men - Beautifully shot, acted, and written. I just was completely taken by this "anti-action movie". What made it even better? How mad everyone in the theatre was at the end by completely missing out on enjoying this film because they went in with the same mentality they had going into Die Hard 4.

3. 3:10 to Yuma - Russel Crowe is just badass in this movie. No other way around it. Add to that Christian Bale and Ben Foster and acting is guranteed awesome before you even enter the theatre. This is just a classic western with a superb ending, IMO. When they both are running through the half-built homes and that musical score for the first time really hits off and bullets are hitting everywhere, I was just in love with the film

4. Superbad - A true highschool movie. Just the things they said and the ways they said then, I could have sworn they filmed this with people I know. Besides that, it is incredibly funny. I want to be a cop after watching that, and I know cops are nothing like this in real life, but still.

5. Transformers - A truly well done summer blockbuster. It had it all. It was funny when it needed to be, dramatic when needed, and action packed the entire time. Just a great movie.


I haven't seen Gone Baby Gone, but I'll catch it when I can. Still want to see Juno, There Will Be Blood, and Charlie Wilson's War. None the less, great year for movies in general. Looking foward to next year too!
Posted: Tue, 18th Dec 2007, 4:06pm

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jmax

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I agree with pretty much all of what's been said so far. Despite the complaints that all of his movies are "the same" (which I don't deny), I thought Will Ferrel was hilarious in Blades of Glory.
I also thoroughly enjoyed Sean Penn's Into the Wild. It had a limited release, but you it's definitely worth checking out if you get the chance. The cinematography was raw and striking, and it was flawlessly understated in its writing and acting. One of the finest movies I've seen in a while, it was grand storytelling. Best of all, it was entirely true.
Posted: Tue, 18th Dec 2007, 8:32pm

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Fill

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Atom, I haven't seen the first four on your list, which is pretty pitiful, but I've been wanting to see No Country for Old Men.

I'm not posting my review until 2008; Sweeney Todd, The Debators, or AVP2 haven't been released yet.

Superbad, however will not be in my top ten movies, because it didn't strike me as very funny. Just... not my type of humor.
Posted: Tue, 18th Dec 2007, 10:00pm

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SilverDragon7

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Fill wrote:

Superbad, however will not be in my top ten movies, because it didn't strike me as very funny. Just... not my type of humor.
It should at least deserve enough respect to be on the bottom of your list twisted.
Posted: Tue, 18th Dec 2007, 11:25pm

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Videoace123

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Great list!!!! You nailed it all!
Posted: Wed, 19th Dec 2007, 1:21am

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Rockfilmers

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Disturbia! Move that to like 2 or some thing. The first time I saw it I was on a flight from orlando to LAX, and it has been in my top 5 after that.
Posted: Wed, 19th Dec 2007, 1:55am

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Hendo

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Here's my list:

1. Transformers
Best movie of the year for me! I enjoyed it for what it is, a summer blockbuster.

2. Death at a Funeral
Great British dry farcical comedy with excellent writing and a plot that gives great pay-offs.

3. The Kingdom
Brilliant thought-provoking ending.

Special mention:
Balls of Fury
Not exactly a classic but enjoyable nonetheless.


Looking forward to (not out here yet):

The Darjeeling Limited
3:10 to Yuma
No Country for Old Men
American Gangster
I am Legend
Posted: Wed, 19th Dec 2007, 2:12am

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Bryce007

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1. Bourne Ultimatum

2. 300

3. Transformers

4. 3:10 to Yuma

5. Die hard 4

6. The Kingdom



Hot rod? .... (That was shockingly mediocre, since it came from the Lonely Island crew..)
Posted: Wed, 19th Dec 2007, 2:21am

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Glitch

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3:10 to Yuma was really good, and probably my favorite movie of the year. I have not seen most of those other ones.
Posted: Wed, 19th Dec 2007, 2:37am

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Serpent

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These lists are in order:

Great films:
Bourne Ultimatum
No Country for Old Men
Superbad
Hot Fuzz
Once
Harry Potter

Medium (not great, sometimes disappointing):
300
Spiderman 3 (I liked this more than I thought I would, the internet generally hated it)
Transformers
Die Hard 4
Knocked Up
Disturbia
Pirates (EXTREMELY disappointed, I had fun before the show though. I slept through the last hald at the midnight show)
Simpsons Movie

Disliked (I don't dislike much because I usually only watch films I know I might like, or will at least entertain)
Meet the Robinsons - don't know why I watched this film, and by "this film" I mean the first 20 minutes, because I was asleep. Disney hasn't made much good without Pixar since the 90's.

Yet to see but want to: American Gangster, Gone Baby Gone, Sunshine (after Tarn's comment), Juno, Golden Compass, 3:10, Into the Wild (love the book), Sweeney Todd, I am Legend (I was pumped, but now I'm not expecting that much), Darjeeling Limited (love Wes Anderson films), Ratatouille, TMNT (nostalgia), Grindhouse, Rush Hour 3, 28 Weeks, and Across the Universe. I'll see Beowulf because of its positive reception, I have low expectations. And I think I'd sooner kill myself than see "Balls of Fury."
Posted: Wed, 19th Dec 2007, 3:23am

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film freak

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Serpent wrote:

These lists are in order:

Great films:
Bourne Ultimatum
No Country for Old Men
Superbad
Hot Fuzz
Once
Harry Potter

Medium (not great, sometimes disappointing):
300
Spiderman 3 (I liked this more than I thought I would, the internet generally hated it)
Transformers
Die Hard 4
Knocked Up
Disturbia
Pirates (EXTREMELY disappointed, I had fun before the show though. I slept through the last hald at the midnight show)
Simpsons Movie

Disliked (I don't dislike much because I usually only watch films I know I might like, or will at least entertain)
Meet the Robinsons - don't know why I watched this film, and by "this film" I mean the first 20 minutes, because I was asleep. Disney hasn't made much good without Pixar since the 90's.

Yet to see but want to: American Gangster, Gone Baby Gone, Sunshine (after Tarn's comment), Juno, Golden Compass, 3:10, Into the Wild (love the book), Sweeney Todd, I am Legend (I was pumped, but now I'm not expecting that much), Darjeeling Limited (love Wes Anderson films), Ratatouille, TMNT (nostalgia), Grindhouse, Rush Hour 3, 28 Weeks, and Across the Universe. I'll see Beowulf because of its positive reception, I have low expectations. And I think I'd sooner kill myself than see "Balls of Fury."
On that note of balls of fury. I saw it. I will never be the same. tard
Posted: Wed, 19th Dec 2007, 5:25am

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Atom

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'Live Free or Die Hard', 'Ratatouille', 'Planet Terror' (from Grindhouse), 'TMNT', and 'Transformers' are my next 5 movies to complete a "Top 15".

On another note, 'Death Proof' hits perfectly at #1 worst movie I've seen this year. Aside from all the split decision, even giving this one another chance at rental proved to no avail. I loved all the trailers and PT from Grindhouse, though, and I can't believe it has been titled a flop to never try again. I guess 3 hours is just too long in the movies. ('The Departed' comes to mind, although it was well-paced)
Posted: Wed, 19th Dec 2007, 2:42pm

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Jabooza

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Well, I don't really have much of a list because I don't really go to the theater all that much. And I have two little brothers so when we do we usually don't go see the movie I would prefer. My two favorite that came out this year are:

Spider-Man 3 - Everyone hated it, I don't really see why though. I liked the story and I liked the themes, it was paced a bit fast (I tend to like slower paced movies) but I think that's kinda the only way to do it with there being so many different stories to tell. The movie had some pretty funny stuff in it and a lot of great action with really good special effects (except some sketchy close-ups of CG characters in the fight between Peter and the New Goblin).

Pirates 3 - Some people say it's too long but I like long movies and I liked just about everything in this movie too.

Well... I don't really have any other ones I can say I loved, I really didn't see many other good ones.

Last edited Mon, 14th Jan 2008, 1:45pm; edited 1 times in total.

Posted: Wed, 19th Dec 2007, 8:50pm

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Evman

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The Good (* denotes EXCEPTIONAL)

Children of Men*
Grindhouse
Pirates 3
Transformers*
Harry Potter 5*
Superbad*

Bourne Ultimatum
The Golden Compass
300


The Bad (* denotes one of the WORST MOVIES I'VE EVER SEEN):
Spider-man 3*
Beowulf
Spider-man 3* biggrin


I'm probably forgetting some films, but off the top of my head, there you have it.


EDIT: Added 300. How could I forget it?

Last edited Wed, 19th Dec 2007, 10:22pm; edited 1 times in total.

Posted: Wed, 19th Dec 2007, 9:10pm

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Serpent

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Add Children of Men right below "No Country," I forgot this had a 2007 release. Seems like so long ago that I rented it on DVD.
Posted: Wed, 19th Dec 2007, 9:43pm

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Simon K Jones

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Children of Men was this year? Mad. Add that to my list too. smile
Posted: Wed, 19th Dec 2007, 10:06pm

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Fill

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Ah, what the heck. I'll post mine. In no particular order:

Bourne Ultimatum
Live Free Die Hard
Ratatouille
Hot Fuzz
Knocked Up
Dan In Real Life(Steve Corell did such a good job.)
August Rush(Really well done.)
I Am Legend
American Gangster
Hairspray(Call me gay, but this was actually a pretty good musical. Good humor.)

Movies that had oustanding visual, but not the best plot:
300(Oh, yes, I dare. Everyone goes crazy over this, and I really don't care for it.)
Transformers

Movies I really want to see:
3:10 to Yuma, Sweeney Todd, No Country for Old Men, Disturbia, The Debators, Children of Men(I can't believe I haven't seen this yet!)

Movies that were disappointing:
Pirates of the Caribbean 3: At World's End
Spider-man 3
Superbad(Only the first half of this movie entertained me.)
Beowulf(I saw this in 3D and it was still disappointing...)

[EDITED]

Last edited Sat, 22nd Dec 2007, 11:22pm; edited 1 times in total.

Posted: Wed, 19th Dec 2007, 11:00pm

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Jabooza

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I forgot, I also saw the new Harry Potter, it was good, although I didn't like it as much as Spider-Man 3 or Pirates 3 (I'm sure some people here think I'm insane). It looks like the HP movies are getting better although it's a shame, the story really had the potential to be as big as LOTR but the movies just didn't quite deliver enough. But now they're on to their fourth director and the movies are getting better, although I do think the editing in the newest one was way too tight, I hope they do it differently next time.

Last edited Mon, 14th Jan 2008, 1:47pm; edited 2 times in total.

Posted: Wed, 19th Dec 2007, 11:41pm

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Harvey

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Favorites (In Order):

1. The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford - Beautifully shot, superb acting, nice direction; just overall a top notch film. Can't wait to get my hands on the DVD.

2. No Country For Old Men - Just a very well made film. Javier Bardem was particularly fantastic and I weren't so conflicted about the ending, this one might be #1 on my list.

3. The Kingdom - Great film, and as Hendo said, a brilliant thought-provoking ending.

4. The Bourne Ultimatum - Non-stop action from start to finish. I saw it three times in theaters and thoroughly enjoyed it each time. The only thing it's missing is Brian Cox, who, in my opinion, makes Supremacy the best of the series.

5. 3:10 To Yuma - I was really looking forward to this one, and it did not disappoint. Really fantastic action sequences and Russell Crowe and Ben Foster were both particularly bad ass.

6. Ratatouille - I loved every second of it, one of Pixar's best.

7. Children of Men - I saw this over the summer and had some mixed feelings about it. It's started growing on me as of late and I've decided that I did like it but I really want to see it again. I think I'll enjoy it more on a second viewing.

8. American Gangster - Overall, enjoyable, but it got a little too epic/long for my tastes.

Ones I missed or haven't seen yet:

The Darjeeling Limited
Gone Baby Gone
I Am Legend
Sweeney Todd
Charlie Wilson's War
There Will Be Blood
Posted: Thu, 20th Dec 2007, 8:31pm

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doppelganger

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Atom wrote:


4. Disturbia

What an amazingly-pleasant surprise this film was indeed. While many criticized it as an over-commercialized trash version of 'Rear Window', this movie did something. It genuinely captured what it's like to be a teenager stuck at home (before all the killing stuff). The movie spends the first half explaining this kid and what he does, and it's all very John Hughes-esque. And who else to do it? The breakout star Shia Labeouf; who proves himself both a skiddish and hilarious 18-year-old and a total killer-opponent badass all in one sitting. This movie was the perfect horror movie for me, and I hate horror movies to no end. It kept me on the edge of my seat the entire time, was fun and light-hearted at times, and turned to completely 'scare-the-crap-outta-you' points that left me almost quivering. No joke. All-the-while, it remained grounded in an almost entirely-believable reality that was, well, surreal. I couldnt've expected any more than I got from 'Disturbia' or the new and fantastic Shia Labeouf, and that's why this is #3. 7/10
________________________________________________________________________

5. The Bourne Ultimatum

What can I say? Bourne is back. This time without the motion-sickness and with double the punch and highlights of the previous two films. Matt Damon proves finally that he might be the physically tougher one of him and Ben Affleck. Maybe not. We'll see. 8/10
Wait a second... how did a 7/10 beat an 8/10... and how in the world did Disturbia beat The Bourne Ultimatum.

I know everyone has there own opinion but The Bourne Ultimatum kicks Disturbia in the a** and thats a fact. smile
Posted: Thu, 20th Dec 2007, 8:49pm

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NuttyBanana

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From what I saw and enjoyed this year at the cinemas...

1. 28 weeks later
Was the best experience I've ever had in the cinemas. It was full of adults and I forgot I was even there until the credits rolled. I went into the movie knowing absolutely nothing about and I was blown away, and when I think of how gripped to it I was whilst watching, I've never been so engrossed in a film before like I was this movie.

2. 300
Not much left to say about this, definitely a perfect 10 score for me on my action hungry days!

3. Transformers
Although I was very gutted by the fact that they played out the Prime/Megatron fight off the fricken camera, the rest of the film was exactly what I needed. Again, one for my action munching days, although it's a close call for DVD watching between this and Transformers the animated movie biggrin

4. Bourne Ultimatum
I greatly regret not seeing this movie at the cinemas but I know 100% that I'd have loved it. Watched it at home again not knowing much about it and it surprised me even though I'd been told it was great. Great finish to a brilliant series.

5. Hot Fuzz
Reasons mentioned by everyone else, brilliant film, and english! FTW!
Posted: Fri, 21st Dec 2007, 12:39am

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Plainly

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4 movies I want to talk about, which are practically the only new movies I've seen this year (that are worth talking about)

1- Pirates 3. Yes, I loved Pirates 3. The best one yet. And it's the 1st 3-hour long movie that I watched (up to now) 3 times - without getting bored. Yay! I'm really happy with it.

2- Harry Potter 5. It was relly good. The best one yet (sounds familiar?). The only problems with it might be that, re-watching it, I sometimes find it boring, because of the very little action into it. Don't get me wrong, I don't mind the fact that there's practically no action - it's just that it sometimes gets a bit long. Also, it's the first Potter film in which I think they messed up Harry's character (a bit). Because (1) he hugs Sirius way too much and (2) he's always mean to Ron, when ROn's being nice to him... But (new) characters they really nailed were Luna, Bellatrix (great actress!), Tonks, Umbridge, Kingsley, and the list goes on!

3- Transformers. Good effects. But the end battle was long, boring, long, very long, and, last but certainly not least, boring. Anyways.

4- Disturbia. I was surprised by how good it was. Very good!

So, yep, here are some 2007 movies I wanted to talk about.
Posted: Fri, 21st Dec 2007, 5:28am

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Atom

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Rebourne wrote:

Wait a second... how did a 7/10 beat an 8/10... and how in the world did Disturbia beat The Bourne Ultimatum.

I know everyone has there own opinion but The Bourne Ultimatum kicks Disturbia in the a** and thats a fact. smile
I disagree for the simple reason that Disturbia displayed just as adequate acting from generally far less-experienced actors and came up with a style of genre entirely of it's own. Make no mistake, 'Bourne' are all fantastic movies and 'Ultimatum' is definitely the best of these, but by making 3 movies it has a tried and true 'action' formula that the filmmakers know just works. This wasn't the case for Disturbia, and while I gave Bourne a higher viewing score, I've said time and time again I'm one who believes in factoring in circumstance and that's partially why Disturbia beats it on the list.

The other reason is the theme. It's very peculiar and perfect. A mix of really, fairly realistic high school and summer boredom nostalgia with a damn near perfect suspense/horror movie. Oh, and a scary as shite David Morse. This movie was a big surprise, and even on a 3rd DVD viewing with my friend, by the end he said "Whoa, I'm surprised. This should be up for an Oscar." And funny enough, even starring Shia Labeouf and named something stupid (but entirely fitting) like 'Disturbia', I think he's right.

For further critique, re-consult my list description of 'why I liked the movie and why it's the number it is'. Disturbia beats Bourne out for the spot. And that's that for me.
Posted: Sat, 22nd Dec 2007, 8:33pm

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miker

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Now that I think about it.. there were so many great films this year.

1. The Bourne Ultimatum

2. Hot Fuzz

3. No Country For Old Men

4. 310 to Yuma

5. 300
Posted: Sat, 22nd Dec 2007, 8:53pm

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ZukoVega

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Best
    Transformers
    The Bourne Ultimatum
    Grindhouse
    The King of Kong: A Fistful of Quarters
    3:10 to Yuma
    Blade Runner: Final Cut
    No Country for old Men

Enjoyed
    28 Weeks Later
    300
    Knocked Up
    Simpsons
    Blades of Glory
    Beowulf IMAX

Disappointed
    Die Hard 4: Live Free or Die Hard
    Death Proof
    Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End
    Spiderman 3
    Shooter
    Disturbia
    30 Days of Night
    I Am Legend
Posted: Sat, 22nd Dec 2007, 9:09pm

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Andreas

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I've seen alot of movies this year, and I forgot half of them which I can remember saying "wow, thats making it to my toplist this year". Since I've now forgotten them, they can't be that good!
The best movie of the year is, in my opinion:
Juno

Other to make it on my top list are:

Once

Super Bad

Gone Baby Gone

The King of Kong

Grindhouse
(both)


Movies I've yet to see but pretty sure will make it high on the list:
Derjeeling Limted
Into the Wild
Wristcutters
Grace is gone
Posted: Sat, 22nd Dec 2007, 9:17pm

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Atom

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Finally someone else who has seen 'Gone Baby Gone'! smile

What'd you think of 'Juno'? I know it's your top choice, but I've heard it's a sophmore slump that mimics too much of the style of 'Thank You For Smoking'.
Posted: Sat, 22nd Dec 2007, 9:18pm

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Videoace123

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Was Transformers this year? Has everyone forgot about it??
Posted: Sat, 22nd Dec 2007, 9:24pm

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Evman

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I really really really want to see Juno, and hopefully I'll get the chance to sometime this week, as it's actually at my local arthouse theater (they usually get movies like 3 months after they're released).
Posted: Sun, 23rd Dec 2007, 5:28am

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Waser

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Rating: +2

I would just like to say the Juno was possibly my least favorite movie of the year. Too snarky, too many references just for the sake of references, and Kittie Pride just bugged the hell out of me.
Posted: Sun, 23rd Dec 2007, 5:35am

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Atom

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Waser wrote:

Kittie Pride just bugged the hell out of me.
I may be small and look like I'm 12, but I'm an independent woman and I'm gonna make you know it!
Posted: Sun, 23rd Dec 2007, 5:48am

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Waser

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Never before has a movie been summed up in one sentence better than that, at least for me
Posted: Sun, 23rd Dec 2007, 6:30am

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Atom

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See Gone Baby Gone. It'll Knock Baby Knock your socks off.

And didn't you one-sentence-sum-up a certain Tim Burton movie about a certain Bride of Corpse? smile
Posted: Sun, 23rd Dec 2007, 6:33am

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Klausky

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Agreed Waser.

On top of that, seeing the film two rows away from my dreaded math teacher didn't help in acquiring a taste for it. There were undoubtedly some well-written, clever lines, but when they were mixed with constant witty rebuttals, I grew tired of Juno, the character. Good soundtrack and Michael Cera is always entertaining, although I hoped he would be featured more. In Superbad and Juno, he plays a very similar role -- I'm interested to see where he goes in the future. He can't play an awkward teen for the rest of his career.
Posted: Sun, 23rd Dec 2007, 6:43am

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Serpent

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Klausky wrote:

Good soundtrack and Michael Cera is always entertaining, although I hoped he would be featured more. In Superbad and Juno, he plays a very similar role -- I'm interested to see where he goes in the future. He can't play an awkward teen for the rest of his career.
He plays the same role in Arrested Development as well (though a different variation of it). Does a great job at it, and I'm not complaining, but he needs to try more if he wants to make a career out of acting in the future.

I forgot to say this in my post, but I think 2007 was a fantastic year for film releases.
Posted: Sun, 23rd Dec 2007, 7:35am

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Atom

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Serpent wrote:

Klausky wrote:

Good soundtrack and Michael Cera is always entertaining, although I hoped he would be featured more. In Superbad and Juno, he plays a very similar role -- I'm interested to see where he goes in the future. He can't play an awkward teen for the rest of his career.
He plays the same role in Arrested Development as well (though a different variation of it). Does a great job at it, and I'm not complaining, but he needs to try more if he wants to make a career out of acting in the future.
I'd hate to say it, but I can't see Michael Cera being able to do much more than that. That just seems so 'him' and I don't think he's able to act a different way. I don't know why, he just doesn't seem good enough to pull something else off. It's total awkwardness-shtick, like Woody Allen. And he can't do anything else either. While it worked perfectly in Superbad against the foul-mouthed Jonah Hill's Seth, I think the character of Evan wasn't supposed to be like that originally, at least not in the script or actual Evan, it was just a fluke of funny.

The role worked very well in Arrested Development and Superbad, I haven't seen Juno but it looks to have worked in that as well. But, I don't think there's much more to him than that.

But I've been wrong before, look at Heath Ledger's Joker.
Posted: Mon, 14th Jan 2008, 6:38am

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ben3308

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I wrote this as a Facebook note but I think it's fitting here. Sorry, no fancy pictures, but I think the reviews should suffice. This is essentially a rank of every movie I saw last year. The ones that were good that I haven't seen yet (There Will Be Blood, Charlie Wilson's War,The Savages) are not included in my top ten because I have not seen them yet.



Having seen tons of tons of films in 2007, it was such a good year I can't say I didn't enjoy any of them. Even the ones that people will hate me for laughing at (Codename: The Cleaner, etc) still had enough clever lines to make it watchable.

In fact, the only two films I saw this year that I felt really didn't have any plot/story were Death Proof (not a fan of Tarantino, especially here) and The Ten (series of vignettes that weren't meant to make a plot). Only three movies left me feeling like I'd just watched something sort of empty (I Am Legend, Juno, The Number 23) and even then these were in a completely different category than the other, solely 'entertaining' movies.

To be clear, I rate movies objectively on what they intended to do, how well they did it, how much I liked it, and how well it satisfied regular film standards of technicals/script/plot/acting/direction. Obviously, better films should be rated on a different scale than worse films, but I’ve tried to even the odds just a little by scaling my top ten movies in one platform. The rest of my judgments aren’t on an even scale.

Essentially, the '__/10' score here has ten points being ten hugely-deserved, somewhat Oscar-worthy points, not general ones.

Here's how this goes: I'll list my top ten films of 2007, then list the rest respectively in groups. Let's get going, shall we?



The Top Ten



1. No Country For Old Men

Violence and mayhem ensue after a hunter stumbles upon some dead bodies, a stash of heroin and more than $2 million in cash near the Rio Grande.

This film is a gem. One of the best films I've ever seen. It's a slow burn to get to the action, but the action itself is so smartly scripted you can't help but grin at the fates of the characters.

Speaking of characters, the ones in this film are so uniquely refreshing that it's a surprise they're not all nominated for Golden Globes. Tommy Lee Jones as the drawling, 'seen-everything-there-is-too-see-in-life' Sheriff Ed Tom Bell is great, even more so is Javier Bardem as arguably one of the most bold and haunting characters even put on paper, Anton Chigurgh.

Chigurgh's (roughly pronounced 'sugar') nihilistic demeanor is deeply unnerving, but his chilling sense of justice (anyone who identifies him is subject to a grisly fate decided by a coin toss) and his incredible intelligence make you like the character. He's definitely the best villain to grace Hollywood since Hannibal Lecter, maybe even before that. You'll have to see the movie to see what I mean.

Short of Bardem's performance (which alone is a great reason to see the film) Josh Brolin shines as Llewellyn Moss, the best character played by Brolin to date. Adding to Moss's quiet character is the incredibly beautiful cinematography, soundwork, and editing. Many may be shocked to learn that the film uses no music at all, and it's still an exhilirating experience.

Ultimately, "No Country" hits all the right points- and then some. It's highly dramatic, well-played, well-acted, darkly hilarious, and yet it's still quaint in its approach. The film is powerful, poignant, but not too over-the-top for the sake of gaining a commercial audience, and for this reason not a lot of people will understand it (most especially the ending). But if you enjoy good cinema, this is a movie for you.

Oh, and I almost forgot to mention: the movie is shot in, directed from, and features an all-Texan cast.

"What's the most you ever lost on a coin toss?"
[bigsize]10/10[/bigsize]



2. Gone, Baby, Gone

When 4 year old Amanda McCready disappears from her home and the police make little headway in solving the case, the girl's aunt hires two private detectives. The detectives freely admit that they have little experience with this type of case, but the family wants them for two reasons - they're not cops and they know the tough neighborhood in which they all live. When they finally solve the case, they are faced with a moral dilemma that tears them apart.

'Gone' blew me away. Why? Because I was expecting melodrama (I mean, it's directed by Ben Affleck, and consider what he's done lately) but what I got was one of the most well-crafted films of the year.

The story is shocking, suspenseful, and action-filled; but it manages to maintain its cinematic, drama-intensive poise throughout. The technicals are good all-around, especially when the twists (of which there are several) are revealed.

The acting is good, but not the best from all characters. Morgan Freeman puts up the usual good performance, as does Ed Harris; but it's nothing too special and for that reason the film falls back a bit. They're still excellent, excellent performances, just not Oscar-worthy. Then there's Michelle Monaghan who I loved in 'Kiss Kiss, Bang Bang' but doesn't really do anything here. And then you get to the lead, Casey Affleck.

Besides playing squirrely side roles here-and-there, Ben's little brother has never had a chance to shine, and now he does. Casey plays- despite speculation- a total badass private detective who keeps it real by openly expressing his strengths and weaknesses to the people he deals with.

'Gone' is more of a murder/crime mystery than anything else, but on that level it excels.

"I can't think of one reason big enough for him to lie to me and small enough for it not to matter"
9/10



3. Disturbia and The Bourne Ultimatum

Disturbia - An unofficial remake of Alfred Hitchcock's 'Rear Window', this film follows the plight of Kale Brecht, a house-arrested teen enduring the summer before senior year confined to home. Things seem mundane until he adopts voyeuristic hobbies which unveil secrets about his neighbor he can hardly comprehend. Are his neighbor's leading secret, murder-bound lives, or are such thoughts merely figments of Kale's imagination?

Besides Javier Bardem's Anton Chigurgh, Shia Labeouf's Kale Brecht is the most well-drawn character of the year. His actions as a bored 17-year-old are typical to most teenage viewers, but the way in which they are captured make for a very, very intriguing individual. He is sarcastic and sharp-tongued, but not in an overdone or obnoxious way (a la Ellen Page's Juno)

Director D.J. Caruso does a wonderful job instructing his actors, and their performances are some of the best of the year. Essentially, though it was billed as a horror/slasher movie, Disturbia is an abundantly-pleasing, well-crafted film that chooses to focus on its characters rather than its macabre subtext. In fact, it's not until well over halfway into the film that the whole plot of a murderous neighbor is revealed.

Even so, the shift in plot midway gives Labeouf's character more room to grow, and he does so in a stellar way. By the end, the audience is treated to the many sides of Kale: humorous, curious, often cynical and annoying, and eventually strategic and very, very, very badass (watch in the climax him hobble across the street on beaten knee carrying garden shears before lightning and thunder, and you'll know immediately what I mean). Labeouf gives us a character that we end up rooting for, despite his beginning shortcomings.

As a final note, I suggest anyone who sees Disturbia forget what they think about the superficial quality of thrillers and see it for what it is: a great movie that lives up to everything it tries to be. Disturbia isn't quite an Oscar-worthy epic, but it still hit its mark and goes the extra mile.

And boy, does this give me reason to respect Shia Labeouf. A completely different character than in 'The Greatest Game Ever Played'. Props to the kid. The new Tom Hanks.

"No, he can't see us. But trust me, he can feel us watching."
8/10


The Bourne Ultimatum - The third installment of the series, this film is the epic climax and conclusion of the government-spawned trials of assassin-turned-good Jason Bourne.

To be short, this film is a rush. It poses unique, frenetic camerawork with solid, unexpectedly badass performances from its usually more mild-mannered cast (Julia Stiles and Matt Damon, most notably) and it ties it all up with a strong storyline and an even stronger conclusion. Those disappointed by the soft-spun endings of I Am Legend and No Country For Old Men will cheer as Damon braves his demons in this heated inner-city manhunt.

Not much more needs to be said, fans of the first and second films will already know what to think of this. Though its second film held the title, it is 'Ultimatum' that is truly supreme.

"I told you people to leave me alone, and now I will bring this fight to your doorstep"
8/10



4. Knocked Up

When an 'E' news hopeful engages in one drunken night with a Canadian underachiever, their shenanigans lead to calamity. Hilarity ensues as the audience witnesses the hectice and too-often conflicted process of unwanted pregnancy.

'Knocked Up' is the best comedy I have seen all year. It's not necessarily the funniest, (though it is amongst them) but it is risque without being too over-the-top, (a la Superbad or Walk Hard) which grants it greater accolades in my opinion.

The pseudo-slacker Ben Stone (played by Seth Rogen, originally of 'Freaks and Geeks') is a character that we grow to love, and his status as the dumpy, humorous, somewhat-pathetic underdog father of an unwanted child is quite possibly as well-played as it has ever been: we believe in Ben, but we also doubt him at times. It's a versatile but lovable character.

Rogen is juxtaposed by Katherine Heigl, who shines in her histrionics as an expecting young mother. This film made me laugh out loud until I cried. It was undoubtedly hilarious, and it also had a strong, determined sense of humanity and heart; making it easily one of the best, most enjoyable films of the year.

"Your face looks like Robin Williams' knuckles"
7/10



5. Breach

Follows the real-life story of the most notorious CIA-infiltrating spy in American history and his subsequent struggle and collapse.

I saw 'Breach' on my flight back to Dallas from New York (which was delayed on the tarmac for 3 hours, if you were wondering) and it was a completely and utterly unexpected triumph. Anyone loves a thriller about a spy on the verge of being found out, but this movie changes the view entirely on the genre.

Instead of a 'Departed'-esque story with Ryan Phillipe as a spy, we are given the aging, unexpected Chris Cooper as the American traitor, with Phillipe following as his seemingly unknowing protege. The story digresses to give Phillipe the information of Cooper's defection, but this only makes for a more interesting story. Cooper is a hard-to-place character, but such indecision makes him all-the-more mysterious. His terms of betrayal are uncertain, and at times we even want to believe he is still a 'good guy', so to speak. It's brilliant.

'Breach' is refreshing and different from almost every other film this year (even different from those that, in trying to be independent, off-center and different (Juno, Hot Rod, Superbad) get categorized as such; and the story that is told is heart-pounding, epic, and engrossing. The film is a slow burn, all the way. There is no huge, all-out action. Yet, even as an even-paced spy movie, it retains a commanding sense of thrill and dramatic timing.

"Can you imagine, sitting in a room with a bunch of your colleagues, everybody trying to guess the identity of a mole and all the while, it's you they're after, you they're looking for?"
7/10



6. Planet Terror

Robert Rodriguez's contribution to 'Grindhouse' focusing on the trials of a group of survivors in a small Texas town that becomes overrun by flesh-boiling zombies.

This was my most enjoyable time at the movies this year, by far. Come to think of it, it was the most enjoyable movie experience I’ve ever had in my entire life- and I’ve seen hundreds of hundreds of movies.

Fans of the weirdly-liked 'B-movie' genre will love this, so will horror film lovers. Not being a member of either group, I did not think I would like this at all, but I absolutely, without a doubt loved it. It was the most endearing film of the year in that it drew me into a genre I despise (gory horror) and for that I give it major, major respect.

Rodriguez has never disappointed me and this is no exception. Without a doubt the better of the 'Grindhouse' ensemble (DP was a trainwreck) I spent every moment of this film cheering Freddy Rodriguez's character, the tongue-in-cheek, never-explained-but-still-legendary 'El Rey'. I also spent time staring at Rose McGowan, who is both hot and hilarious, in this film at least.

The technicals are really, really awesome and Rodriguez makes use of harsh digital grading and vibrant, eerie-colored lighting, even in perhaps inappropriate circumstances (like a love scene that is swiftly followed by a satirical ‘Missing Reel’ notification). Even though this intense visual style might deter some, I found it generally exciting: it only added to the creepy yet incredibly, unbelievably badass aspect of the film.

The movie is gratuitous for the sake of being gratuitous, but admittedly so. The action is overdone (El Rey at times runs up walls and does backflips) but not so much as to make the movie a farce (as can be seen in the Jamie Kennedy/Icecream man action scenes in Max Keeble’s Big Move, if anyone was wondering). Like many of Tarantino’s sordid films, ‘Planet Terror’ pays homage and commits cliché as a natural part of the genre it encompasses. It has moments of Hitchcock suspense that are rudely interrupted by someone or something that openly addresses that such suspense was happening. In essence, the tongue-in-cheek nature of the film is clear and obvious, and that makes it all-the-more understandable and therefore more entertaining.

For anyone who has a penchant for popcorn action movies (and a moderately strong stomach) this movie is definitely for you.

"You want the story? I'll spin it for you quick."
7/10




7. Ratatouille

The story of curious food-connoisseur rat Remy, who, in migrating from country life gets separated from his family and stumbles upon success. What follows are his antics in a Paris kitchen (“Gusteau’s”) that allow room for both comedy and a bit of drama.

The best animated feature since ‘The Incredibles’, this movie is perfect in nearly every way for me. Because it is animated, the performances are obviously not quite Oscar caliber, but they are still strong and well-fitting within Ratatouille’s plotline.

The visuals are beautiful (though entirely computer-generated), the characters are well-crafted, and director Brad Bird isn’t afraid to show us that he’s got heart; and is willing to inject it into any project he takes on. Oh, and Mr. Bird also wrote the screenplay, which is a marvel as well.

"You're the one who was getting fancy with the spices!"
7/10



8. Hot Fuzz

Jealous colleagues conspire to get a top London cop transferred to a small town and paired with a witless new partner. On the beat, the pair stumble upon a series of suspicious accidents and events.

For anyone who ever thought Brits couldn't pull off a good action feature, this proves you wrong. 'Fuzz' is morbid, dark, and at times shocking, but it's not afraid to announce that it is, indeed, all in good fun.

Jokes, blood, and film-flickering action galore, 'Hot Fuzz' manages to encompasses action classics in a satirical and overstated way, and I loved every minute of it. Furthermore, it's genuinely creepy/scary when it needs to be, and the versatility of the actors and the direction is obvious.

7/10



9. America Gangster and The Kingdom

American Gangster - In 1970s America, a detective works to bring down the drug empire of Frank Lucas, a heroin kingpin from Manhattan, who is smuggling the drug into the country from the Far East.

If you wanted to pick one largely 'epic' film of the year- maybe even epic to a fault- this is it. Ridley Scott continues to impress (granted with less style and bravado than his brother's sort of recent Deja Vu) with his direction of the inimitable Russel Crowe and Denzel Washington.

This film is sort of a turn of events for Washington, who, despite his long and storied career, has never actually played the archetypal 'bad guy' (as he does in here). Much like Cooper in 'Breach', Washington's character is questionably evil until he walks out of eating breakfast at a diner, approaches a drugdealer on the street, and promptly shoots him point blank in the head. It isn't until Denzel cooly walks back to resume breakfast in the diner that we really get to see how ruthless he really is- and it's an absolute treat for the audience.

Opposing Washington is the down-on-his-luck, somehow-stupidly-separated-from-the-uber-hot-Carla-Gugino, city cop who is fighting a markedly uphill battle against the drug trade in New York City.

I'll be short for the rest of this, but a few things I need to address are the faults in this movie. It's long, and it probably doesn't need to be. We get character development ad nauseam, and sometimes it's hard to tell where the story is even going. And, to top it all off, then ending is underwhelming. Still good, but not great.

But all-in-all, it was a film I appreciated. And hence it makes the top 10.

7/10


The Kingdom - A team of U.S. government agents is sent to investigate the bombing of an American facility in the Middle East.

Though this film was made more for commercial benefits (to make money) and though, as evidenced by the behind-the-scenes, Peter Berg is an inevitable douchebag as a director (I still like the guy, though), I found this film shockingly great.

All the characters in this film are stereotyped, which I didn't quite like (Jamie Foxx is the 'let's kill 'em all!!!' black guy, Jennifer Garner the crying womany soldier, Chris Cooper the 'good ol' boy' military man, and Jason Bateman the geeky, 'The Shins'-shirt-wearing white guy) but there was one character that stood out that lent real humanity to the film, and that was Ashraf Barhom, who plays the frustrated yet compassionate state police colonel.

The film is a politically-charged piece, and the frenetic (and I mean FRENETIC) camerawork and editing make for a very realistically-portrayed piece on the Middle East. When a playground full of families is exploded by a suicide bomber in the first ten minutes of the film: you feel for them. When crews come in to fix the situation later that night and are exploded by a second suicide bomb: you REALLY feel for them.

The terms of the movie are tense, but then again so is life. Foxx and company arrive in Saudi Arabia ('The Kingdom', as it were) to investigate the second explosion (in which Gary Hobson formerly of the show 'Early Edition', who is apparently a colleague of theirs, is killed) only to be greeted by Barhom, who plays his character perfectly.

For many who know about conditions in the Eastern world, things are not ideal and director Berg has no problem showing this. Even once the Cia crew makes its way tot he crime scene, they are not allowed to touch or investigate anything, and their purpose is seemingly superficial. This is exemplified by Barhom's constant watch over the American agents, and his subsequent frustration. I was shocked to learn Barhom did not know English, and that he was forced to learn for the movie; because the way in which he speaks evokes so much emotion at times that you could swear it was his native tongue.

I won't say much more except for that I really, really enjoyed 'The Kingdom', if not for the fact that Jason Bateman gets kidnapped and held before camera to be beheaded by terrorists, than for the superb, Oscar-worthy performance of Ashraf Barhom.

"Which side do you think Allah's on?"
7/10



10. Hot Rod and 300

Hot Rod -Self-proclaimed stuntman Rod Kimble is preparing for the jump of his life - to clear fifteen buses to raise money for his abusive stepfather Frank's life-saving heart operation.

Funnily enough, like a lot of other movies this year, I was expecting very little from this film. The Lonely Island crew (who do the SNL Digital Shorts) have proven they can be funny (Lazy Sunday, Dick in a Box), but they have also shown inconsistency and their inability to make anything over 5 minutes.

'Hot Rod' proved all my negative assumptions wrong. It is the quirky humor so many people want to praise Juno for, but without the bitchy pregnant protagonist and with a lot more laughs. The zany humor here is reminiscient of The Office's awkward situations and Napolean Dynamite's offbeat edge. It's just a great eclectic combination.

Moreover, Andy Samberg's parody role as stuntman Rod Kimble is beyond hilarious. Dare I say it, he's funnier than McLovin. There are just so many great parts in the film that it's hard to remember them all. Some of the jokes you have to have seen 80's movies to get, but if you have you'll laugh yourself to you throw up. This movie will definitely not be liked by all, but I found it to be A+ comedy material.

Rod's character is simple, naive, and determined; reminding us of all the underdog stories of the 1980's film era. There's several homages here, and not once does the movie even try to be serious about it. It's a complete farce, so some will dislike it, but if you actually understand what it's going for then I guarantee you'll love this movie.

"I figured this whole thing out while I was passionately dance-fighting my frustrations in the woods."
6/10


300 - King Leonidas and a force of 300 men fight the Persians at Thermopylae in 480 B.C.

Visually stunning, this movie is an intense, war-epic rush that shoots it back to the days of loin-cloth-wearing crusaders. It was great, and I'd be stupid not to include it in this list. Now, I hate to say it, it wasn't that memorable, but it felt so epic (both visually and emotionally) that it for sure deserves whatever kudos it gets.

For SPARTAAAA!!!!

"To-night- we dine- in HELL! "
6/10



Every Other Movie I Saw

Now these are in the order in which I saw them, not quality, so forgive me if I list so relatively mediocre ones first. Here goes...

Codename: The Cleaner
This was passable entertainment. Obviously nothing special, and a HUGE commercially-made movie, but it had enough funny lines to tide it over. The scene where Cedric the Entertainer requests random stuff from the butler is certainly side-splitting.

"I want you to get me a JET magazine. It's like a pamphlet with a lot of pictures for brothers who like to read, but not that much."

Alpha Dog
While it was overplayed, had bad special effects (for how few there were), and tried a little too hard, this drama about real-life gang kidnapping was thrilling and emotional. Definitely one of the better films of the year. And Timberlake did a great job in his first serious role.

Smokin' Aces
When you strip away all the dark, gross-out bits and the actiony facade, this movie is nothing more than a bad, bad remake of director Joe Carnahan's short film 'Ticker'. Yeah, it looked cool, and yeah, the characters were cool. But this tried to be a 'deep' movie, (unlike, say, The Cleaner, which knew it was shallow) and for that I deduct major points. A mediocre film at best.

Norbit
Okay movie, worst movie experience. Some of the jokes were good, but the weirdness of it and the theater I was in (FULL of people on speakerphone on their cell phones) made for a bad experience. Still, Eddie Murphy is an accomplished actor and kudos go to him for (yet again) encompassing so many varied roles. Mediocre/bad movie.

Music and Lyrics
Funny, quirky, and proven to show that Hugh Grant hasn't passed his prime. I don't normally like chick flicks but this was surprisingly full of charm and wit. Good movie.

Ghost Rider
This, like many films, was too hollow a shell of a movie for me to really really like it. It felt like a fake movie, but the special effects and obligatory badass moments were still there. Also, Nicolas Cage, being a Coppola, is obviously a great actor, and he brings no less charm to the role than he ever has. A passable movie, especially if you like action/special effects.

The Number 23
A well-crafted but maybe too hasty film from recently maverick director Joel Schumacher. He goes back to his 'Falling Down' roots and focuses on the plight of one dramatic character, rather than on a campy situation. I liked it. Some will say the ending tied things up to quickly, but the movie's apparent depth coupled with its high entertainment value made for a great film in my opinion. Certainly one to rent.

Reno: 911! Miami
This was funny, but not as funny as the trailer made it look. Still, a hugely entertaining movie. Another good one to rent/buy pre-viewed for 5 bucks at Blockbuster.

Black Snake Moan
A very interesting, entertaining, and deep film about Christina Ricci as a recovering nymphomaniac. Very contemplative, and great performances all around. The story (girl chained to a man's house so he can cure her of her 'wickedness') is also a great backdrop for the plot.

Wild Hogs
Despite what everyone says, this movie is thoroughly hilarious. The characters are so well cast and well played that they make the perfect comic ensemble. This movie doesn't care to ever play it straight, and the 'black man in a group of white men' quips from Martin Lawrence are hilarious. Also, William H. Macy is the best in this movie, and he reminded me tons of Daniel O'Connor. A good comedy for family.

Zodiac
Another cinematic triumph from director David Fincher. Fans of Fight Club, The Game, or Panic Room will not be disappointed. Great, haunting film.

Premonition
I downloaded this and sort of skipped through it because it was largely boring/weird in ways I didn't care about. But the ending was very climactic and intense, and I liked that part. Maybe rent, maybe not. Generic thrills.

Shooter
Though it feels much like a country-boy reiteration of The Bourne Identity, this movie is as good as action/suspense can get, given the storyline. I really enjoyed this, for both technicals and storytelling merits. Rent/buy it.

TMNT
Visually stunning animated movie. The animation isn't as good as say, Ratatouille, but it more than makes up for it in freaking badass/awesome stylizing of cinematography and lighting. The best camerawork of the year, save 'No Country'. A throwaway plot, but still: it's ninja turtles. You get what you get. And I liked the camerawork so much, I didn't care about anything else. It's sweeping and largely cinematic. A good movie, especially if you liked the ninja turtles as a kid.

Blades of Glory
Some cheap, hollow laughs and a couple of hot shots of Jenna Fischer (surprisingly) but other than that this movie is fake, insufficient, and not too funny. MTV's worst cinematic endeavor to date. A passable, if not bad film.

Death Proof
In what director Quentin Tarantino would like to convince you is an homage to several old films there is, without a doubt, nothing. There's no real story, not even a passable plot. The whole movie is one disjointed, incoherent mess that hinges on a seemingly 'awesome' final chase scene that is ultimately lackluster. About 90% of the people in the theater left during this movie. Domingo, who sat beside me, leaned in and asked "is this supposed to be this bad on purpose?". Bad movie. Wouldn't even consider watching again.

Aqua Teen Hunger Force Colon Movie Film for Theaters
This was okay. It was like a less-than-stellar, more drawn out version of an episode of the show. Not bad, but not quite good either. Still had some good laughs.

Next
Shallowly scripted and certainly the worst Philip K. Dick adaption yet(Blade Runner, Minority Report, Impostor, A Scanner Darkly) this film is okay, and actually has some good parts; but it is overshadowed by too much of an emphasis on non-existent character development. If they'd cut straight to the action more, it would've been better. Still a good film, just nothing special.

Spiderman 3
Very hard to place. Had some shockingly bad/awkward bits (the whole emo thing) but on the whole the emotions portrayed for a superhero film were some of the best of the year. The bridge scene with Kirsten Dunst is a great moment for Tobey MacGuire as an actor. I liked it, but can see why some didn't. A good movie to rent or consider owning.

The Ex
A bit short of the comic timing, I still found this movie mildly engaging. It definitely had some lines I'll remember as hilarious, but it wasn't funny overall enough to be a true gem. Still, nothing crazy detracted the comedy or the story, and it was an interesting enough film to watch. Consider renting.

Pirates of the Carribbean 2 and 3
I remember these being hugely epic and visually pretty cool, but short of that I don't remember much else. They're forgetful and nothing that special. Good movies, but perhaps too long a watching endeavor to want to buy.

Ocean's Thirteen
The great final chapter to the Danny Ocean saga. It retained all the enhanced cleverness of the second while capturing the luminescent setting of the first. Undoubtedly a good, enjoyable, smartly-scripted film.

Surf's Up
An animated kid's movie with a good story, good acting (Shia Labeouf, yet again) and a whole lotta heart. I found this funny, entertaining, and all-around great.

Fantastic 4: Rise of the Silver Surfer
This is nothing special for any sort of purpose, but the story is passable, the acting clever (at times) and the special effects pretty awesome. Oh, and Jessica Alba is all sorts of hot in it. So I liked it. Nothing special, but worth seeing if you want entertainment.

Live Free or Die Hard
This was an absolutely fantastic rush of a movie. The best action film in recent years, maybe even since the Matrix. I loved every minute of this. If you're a fan of John McClane (which you SHOULD be if you aren't already!) then you will for sure love this film. A great, great action movie.

Sicko
A chillingly honest documentary about the American health care system. Despite being slightly alarmist (a la Michael Moore) it was an eye-opening movie and very redeeming of Moore's qualities as a documentarian after the Fahrenheit 9/11 ordeal.

Transformers
I expected big stompy robots and that's precisely what I got. This film felt too rushed and too fake, and I didn't like it that much. The movie was generally good, but I felt it didn't keep it together enough, and it felt sort of 'throwaway'. The main character felt halfway transplanted from Kale Brecht in Disturbia, the same for the action from Live Free or Die Hard. It just wasn't unique and memorable enough for me to really, really appreciate it. Still a good movie, just not great.

Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix
I missed like the whole first 30 minutes (which I am told are some of the best) but this movie was generally very good in all areas. Daniel Radcliffe actually proves he's there for more than just satisfying a contract he made 7 years ago, and the special effects artists actually give us something cool to look at. Good movie.

I Now Pronounce You Chuck & Larry
This was pretty good. Not HUGELY funny, but it's still Adam Sandler, so it was funny enough for me to like it. If you think you'll be a fan of the backdrop (illegitimate gay marriage) then I think you'll enjoy this.

The Simpsons Movie
This film lives up to characterizing the TV show and then some. I really enjoyed, and it was really very funny.

Rush Hour 3
Some really hilarious bits from Chris Tucker, but nothing like either of the first two. I wouldn't buy this, but I would rent it. It was okay. The first two (especially Rush Hour 2) are movies I can (and have) watch(ed) over and over from year-to-year without getting bored. This movie I can't see seeing more than once or twice.

Superbad
This almost made the Top Ten, but I found the humor too over-the-top to grant best comedy. It characterized teenage life very well, but perhaps tried too hard. (a la saying 'vag' every five words, which, sadly, people in real life don't do) Still, it was supremely, supremely funny and one of the best comedies of the year. A great movie.

Death Sentence
Despite a few off-hand scenes and poor music choices from the producers, Kevin Bacon really pulled through as both an emotional wreck as a father and a badass out for revenge in this classic-throwback. The action in this movie is hugely inventive, and it contains camerawork that shows that it isn't afriad to push the limits. There's one 15 minute long angle without any crew members visible that is basically Bacon running up six floors of a parking garage until he's wheezing and out of breath, still running from a street gang. It is visually and emotionally amazing. As a total film, it's obviously not Oscar material, but I still loved it for what it was.

Shoot 'Em Up
This film is actiony, self-proclaimed over-the-top, and a little weird; but it is still an intense rush. Unlike Die Hard 4, however, the story isn't there at all, so as a total movie it's not the best. But for an action and cinematography test, it's fantastic.

Fred Claus
Wow, this may look bad to a lot of people, but if you're one of those people then you're not seeing a movie for what it is. This movie is a kid's movie, so it's obviously a bit shallow in nature, but it captures great performances from Vince Vaughn, Paul Giamatti, and Kevin Spacey. The opening Vaughn scenes are the funniest, and the final dramatic scene with Spacey shows that the Kev-man is up for any movie to give a great performance. I really liked this as a kid's movie.

Beowulf
The motion-capture animation was sort of weird, but I still generally liked this movie. It felt rushed, like it added up to nothing, but it was still pretty good.

Juno
This movie was passable, nowhere near as good as it is hyped up to be. The scripting is juvenile an unnatural: I did not for a second see Juno as a believable person. She seemed artificial and fake, and the problems she suffered near the end seemed tied up quickly so as to spur hasty drama.

I see this film as a sort of trap: it's crafted to have 'indie' dialog (as if faux-hipster screenwriter Diablo Cody simply thought of everything 'cool' and 'independent' she could, then injected it gratuitously simply for the sake of sounding 'cool' and 'independent') and it would like to have you believe that there's something beneath the surface- about true love, passionate, mistakes, what have you- but beneath it all is nothing, just a mediocre story that is so overstated and unrealistic in approach that it has actually convinced people that that is what 'life is actually like'.

It was okay, but certainly nothing even close to special. Proponents of the script have fallen into the trap, and there's no getting out. Would be a good movie if it weren't wrapped in so much intentional pretention.

Alvin and the Chipmunks
I saw this with my little brother and enjoyed it. It's a kid's movie and doesn't try to be anything more than that. It had funny gags from the chipmunks (Alvin voiced by comedy maverick Justin Long) and some clever quips from actors Jason Lee and David Cross. I liked it, though nothing spectacular.

I Am Legend
Even though this collapsed into mediocrity in its third act, this film was overall very potent, powerful, and genuine in its approach. It was enjoyable and epic, and Will Smith was the right man to carry the movie. A good movie.

National Treasure: Book of Secrets
As a kid's/adult movie, this succeeds. It goes a little too over-the-edge int he suspension of disbelief department, but if you liked the first one then you'll like this. It's generally pretty entertaining, and the character playing Riley is hilarious as always. A pretty good movie.

Walk Hard
This comedy epic was full of jokes that I laughed at. It got a little boring in the middle (I fell asleep, but not because of the movie) but the ending was very climactic and the performance by John C. Riley was hilarious, dramatic, and deserving of the Golden Globe nod he has received for it. A good comedy.

The Ten
As a movie, this is horrible. As a series of sketches, it's actually pretty good. 'The Ten' is ten stories, all identifying different rules on the ten commandments. While each story is individually pretty funny, the weaker ones force themselves to be strung together with the stronger ones, and this brings the movie down. It doesn't feel so much like a movie as a technically-proficient long episode of MadTV, but for the few genius segments I give it props. It's full of offbeat and sometimes misunderstoof quirks, and one segment is about a woman's sexual awakening in Mexico with none other than a since-retired, out-of-work Jesus Christ. It is so, so, so, so hilarious I can't even describe it. But the other segments of the film are nowhere near as good. So it's passable as a movie. Good if you're willing just to watch the good segments.


Aaaaaand that's all folks. Please comment on your opinions on my opinions, as I'm completely open to clarifying. (I'm anticipating some Juno backlash). Hope you read the reviews!

Regards my dear chaps, Ben
Posted: Mon, 14th Jan 2008, 2:07pm

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Jabooza

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After looking back on my original post I decided to edit that a little bit. But I have more to say now;
I recently just watched the Bourne movies, so The Bourne Ultimatum is another one of my favorites for this year. I also saw Live Free or Die Hard, that was really good too. I also saw Ratatouille which was probably (like Ben said) the best animated movie since The Incredibles (which is probably my favorite animated movie of all time) and BY FAR the best animated movie this year. I think Ghost Rider was also this year, that was pretty good. The Simpsons was also pretty good, it was extremely funny.

I also had the displeasure of watching BOTH Alvin and the Chipmunks, AND The Bridge to Terribithea I really didn't like them (although the latter wasn't quite as bad as I had anticipated but was still very, very bad all the same). Another not very good one I saw was Shrek 3 (or "Shrek the Third), I laughed... sometimes. If it wasn't for the dying frog scene then I would probably hate it.

I was sure I made a post with a lot of these movies in this topic already but I can't seem to find it. unsure

Last edited Mon, 14th Jan 2008, 6:43pm; edited 1 times in total.

Posted: Mon, 14th Jan 2008, 2:45pm

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Frosty G

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Ben: I was more suprised on how positive you were on just about everything you saw, haha. Some of those movies you found good parts in were just all around awful. I see alot of movies working at Blockbuster and Next, Codename: The Cleaner, Norbit, and Ghost Rider are all just awful.

I was actually angry after watching Next. I felt like the filmakers one upped me and I was obligated to prank them back or something. I couldn't figure out how the tricked Julliane Moore to be in it. I found nothing enjoyable with it.

I watched Death Sentence because I was intrigued by the trailer. The camera shots seemed very interesting in the trailer and the plot looked passable. I soon found out that all the interesting camera angles were in the trailer. I mean does anybody really know what the heck John Goodman was doing the entire movie? What was his motivation on anything.

Your top ten is respectable. There are a couple I wouldn't have on there(Hot Rod, Planet Terror, 300) and some I would have put on there (3:10 to Yuma, Zodiac, Superbad).

But I think worst film of the year award goes to Halloween.
Posted: Mon, 14th Jan 2008, 7:02pm

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Jabooza

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I was looking through Ben's post again and saw "Surf's Up." I also saw this movie. It was actually kind of interesting because it was an animated mocumentary, (well, I guess not mocumentary because it wasn't really mocking anything, but it was fiction) and they handled it quite well, although there were some surfing shots that they couldn't have got in a real documentary, at least not as good as they did. The voice acting, like Ben said, was pretty good, particularly the voice acting from Shia Labeouf. The story however was a bit predictable, and had a lot of plot elements you see in kids movies (and also, elements that were similar to ones from Cars). But it was able to be funny without lame dancing and fart jokes (sadly, something rare to see in animated movies that aren't from Pixar). And the CG was quite good, especially the waves, they looked easily real enough to be in a live action movie.

Well, hopefully I've finally covered all or most of the movies I've seen from 2007. smile

Last edited Tue, 15th Jan 2008, 2:35am; edited 1 times in total.

Posted: Mon, 14th Jan 2008, 8:25pm

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Bryce007

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"Live free or Die Hard" wasn't nearly as good in the theater as on the unrated DVD.


"Black snake moan" was a terribly trite, pretentious turd.

"wild hogs" was surprisingly funny...

"Next" was simply annoying.

"Rush hour 3" was 34% funny. the rest (I'm pretty sure) was random scenes from other unproduced buddy flicks thrown together with unpleasant results.

"Death sentence" was pitch perfect, and didn't get "overly long". definitely a tight film.

"Shoot em' up" was just funny. The movie wouldn't have been as good had there not been a CGI baby included in most of the action scenes.


I couldn't bring myself to watch National treasure 2. It's almost against my personal ethics to support lazy, hack sequels with almost the exact same story structure.



(Also, I'm beginning to think that John voight will sign on to a movie if he thinks there might be a scene where he can act amazed/stunned. Seriously, Every movie he's been in lately, there's a scene with a close up of him, bewildered expression on, saying "My god..."

Both Tomb Raiders.

Both national treasures.

Transformers.

Glory road.


That's a LOT of stunned expressions...
Posted: Mon, 14th Jan 2008, 8:26pm

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Fill

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I have to disagree with Waser. I liked Juno a lot. It was just a quirky, awkward, humorous movie that left me smiling. In my opinion, Michael Cera did a fantastic job, but I do agree the guy's gotta start putting some variety in his acting. Juno doesn't earn the best movie of the year, but it's definitely up there.

Oh, and I finally saw Children of Men, and it instantly became one of my favorites. Just the concept of the movie is great.

I'll start on my list of movies that weren't terrible, but not really work my money:

National Treasure 2
Fantastic 4: Rise of the Silver Surfer
Ghost Rider
The Waterhorse(All the other movies were sold out)
The Heartbreak Kid
Blades of Glory
Mr. Woodcock
Evan Almighty
Next
Posted: Tue, 15th Jan 2008, 1:31am

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ben3308

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Unless a movie terribly upsets me by trying to be more than it is, I try to see the good in movies. If movies try too hard or to pretend to be more than they are: I go ballistic at them. But I'm mainly generous when it comes to entertainment, because I see everything for what it is.

For instance, I knew what Ghost Rider would be (an empty movie) but I still enjoyed the moment-of-truth actiony bits. Reminded me somewhat of the action in Army of Darkness.

I just want people to keep in mind that my list is every movie I saw, not just the best.


Bryce,

I downloaded Next, and it was definitely not that great of a movie script/acting/directing-wise. But the approach to the 'as many ways you can play out a scene in 2 minutes' was cool, and for that I give it points.

Black Snake Moan I generally liked. It, like many of the movies I saw, was sort of empty feeling, but the characters in it actually had issues that I felt had weight, as opposed to something like Juno where all the characters have barely-scripted issues that a lot of drama is contrivingly added to.

Live Free or Die Hard was not good for me in theaters. I only liked it. This past Thanksgiving holiday, when I purchased the unrated DVD in Arkansas and popped it into the DVD player, I LOVED it. John McClane needed those f-bombs for authenticity.

Rush Hour had a few gags but is nowhere near the first two. The first two keep the comedy fresh and entertaining, and are genuinely funny and well-directed. The last seems contrived, hasty, and only about 30 minutes long.

Death Sentence I really, really liked (cinematography/production design reminded me a LOT of Running Scared)but some of the melodrama in it (Bacon was really good, but overdone in a few moments) killed the TOTAL coolness vibe, as did the horribly-chosen Enya tracks during the hospital bits. I still loved the movie, though. Same for Shoot 'Em Up: I loved it, despite the weird bits.
Posted: Tue, 15th Jan 2008, 1:52pm

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drspin98

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It's always interesting to see lists like this. There are people's lists that I am thinking "What the....".

Just goes to show how widely and wildly opinions can vary.
Posted: Mon, 28th Jan 2008, 10:01am

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Bryce007

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Finally saw "No Country for Old Men" and Ive got to say, it was brilliant. Very few films have such a thick atmosphere throughout.


Also, the Coens are MASTERS at "Showing, not telling". This movie seriously had some of the best subtext I've ever seen, period.
Posted: Mon, 28th Jan 2008, 11:53am

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Jabooza

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Rating: +1

I just saw I Am Legend. Definitely really, really good. I like the way they really made it feel like he was the last man on Earth, with all the quietness and then whenever there was action instead of being quiet it would get really loud. SPOILERISH (highlight to read): You almost felt like you were tense during the night scenes and could calm down during the day scenes. A little weird though, and I didn't care for the ending (but I won't give anything away). Will Smith's acting was extremely good. And the effects were also great, it looks like Sony Pictures Image Works is stepping it up a level.
Posted: Mon, 28th Jan 2008, 1:22pm

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drspin98

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Jabooza-Cool way to mask the spoiler!! Heck +1 just for that!!
Posted: Tue, 29th Jan 2008, 1:34am

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Jabooza

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drspin98 wrote:

Jabooza-Cool way to mask the spoiler!! Heck +1 just for that!!
Heh, thanks.

I wasn't the first one to do mask the spoiler that way.

Please don't take away the +1.
Posted: Tue, 29th Jan 2008, 1:48am

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ben3308

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Bryce007 wrote:

Also, the Coens are MASTERS at "Showing, not telling". This movie seriously had some of the best subtext I've ever seen, period.
Most notable were the pan away to the black-lined boot marks on the floor while Chigurgh's choking the deputy in Dallas (who is nowhere near as hick-sounding, cowboy-hat-wearing, good ol' boy as they portrayed, but I still enjoyed it) to infer that the scuffle got as bad as it could. Not so much a 'not tell' scene, but panning to the marks on the floor that represent someone kicking for their life is just....well, a great symbol.

Or when Chigurgh lifts his boots onto the bed as he sees the line of blood on the floor about to touch them. We can pretty much guess what Carson Wells probably looks like in the opposite chair.

Or when he exits the house, wipes his feet, and lifts them one-by-one to check for bloodstains. We didn't see what happened, but through this we might as well know.

Or the knobbly indents on the air duct when Chigurgh looks down it. We know the money is gone, they didn't have to tell us. Great symbol, yet again.

Or how the hiss of an airtank or the squeak of the silenced shotgun meant Chigurgh was coming. They almost never had to spell it out for you, you just knew he was coming.

Or, more acting than direction, when Tommy Lee Jones takes his hat off in front of Carla Jean and she starts crying, and then the shot immediately cuts. They didn't need to tell the audience; or, rather, have Jones tell the audience that Carla Jean just found out her husband died, the information was just shown and then cut from. Short, sweet, and well-thought-out.

Or, perhaps best of all, the ringing telephone that you can hear down the hall when Moss gets up to call the front desk. You know from the dual rings (on Moss's end and on the front desk's end) that the clerk is dead and that something is severely wrong.

I could (and sort of have) go on and on about these little nuances of the storytelling. They made the movie for me.