Friday, January 1, 2010

Top Ten Movies of the 2000s

OOOOOOOOOOOOOOK. Happy New Years and all that good stuff. If you know me you know that New Years Eve is like my least favorite thing in the world. So, my friends and I ate some dinner, drank some beers, I fell asleep during Jersey Shore, went home, started watching Paranormal Activity and fell asleep. I know, I am a wild woman.

On big bad NYD I finished watching Paranormal Activity (review coming soonish--sooner than usual, because I am making a concerted effort this year to never have more than two movies to review at any given time), then I watched the NHL Winter Classic--go Boston, phuck Philly!--and the announcement of the Team USA men's hockey team (go team Russia! and who are those American guys? I knew like four of them..two of whom were goalies... GO RYAN MILLER!) Then I took a 4 hour nap. All in all, a pretty great way to start the new year.

So, everyone is putting out these best of the year/best of the decade lists. I normally wouldn't partake in this sort of craziness, however, my friends at The Bob and Abe Show already asked me for my best of the decade, movie-wise, so I have my list already. I spent a lot of time thinking about it while I was busy at work one day. This is what I came up with. Let's do this thing in reverse order, shall we?

My Top 10 of the 2000s:
10) Good bye, Lenin! (2003) Have you seen this? It is awesome! It is one of those fall of communism movies I am so into. And the relationship between Alex and his mother is just so freaking precious.

9) Black Hawk Down (2001) My BFF and I saw this movie together in the theatre. Ah, nostalgia. Holy crap, this one is awesome! One I can, and have, and will (so look for the review) watch over and over again. There is literally nothing I can find wrong with this one. And this true life story is amazing on screen!

8) Shaun of the Dead (2004) My love of zombie movies runs deep and this was one of the most innovative of the decade--though Romero made 2 (TWO!) movies this decade--Land of the Dead and Diary of the Dead (how I have not reviewed either of these?) and had a solid remake of one of his movies--Dawn of the Dead--again, how have I not reviewed this? I watch it all the time! I'd include it on this best of the decade list but I don't think there would be much agreement on it.

7) Love Actually (2003) This is included this high on my list hesitantly. I love it, and it is a great movie, but maybe it should be number 10 instead of number 7. Is Love Actually better than Shaun of the Dead or Black Hawk Down? I dunno. But like Chris--Bob's brother--said on the show, this movie is so classic because every single person who watches it can relate to one of the plot lines. My favorite one is the one with Laura Linney and her brother. Because remember kiddies, all love is not romantic love.

6) Donnie Darko: the Director's Cut (2001) Have you seen the Director's Cut? It is so much better than the original cut! Now, unlike Bob--clearly the smartest guy ever--I couldn't really figure out what was going on in Donnie Darko. My excuse was that I was just out of High School when it came out. However, when I was in college and the Director's Cut came out it made so much more sense. I will rarely admit that I am a little dumb, or common, but I liked this one better because I understood what was going on better.

5) The Pianist (2002) Love me some Roman Polanski. And Adrien Brody. And the music. This may be one of the most "obvious" choices on this list. It was an Oscar winner and it contains all those guarentees of one. (remember that Kate Winset episode of Extras where she said you either have to either play a retard or be in a Nazi movie to win an oscar?!) But Adrien Brody is just so good and Roman Polanski, I am sure, was waiting to make this movie his entire life. I think the fact that the movie concentrated on his music instead of like being in a camp makes it less trite--you know, so it wasn't like Life is Beautiful. *rolls eyes*

4) Gran Torino (2008) wow, why is this movie so good? And why doesn't it get the credit it is due? The fact that Clint Eastwood was not nominated as either director or actor in this film is entirely ridiculous. And like I have said a million times, the reason this movie was so good was that it was so unexpected. Unexpectedly hilarious, unexpectedly tragic, unexpectedly wonderful. Kudos Clint!

3) Children Underground (2001) I have told so many people to watch this, but I have a feeling no one has. It is a truly devastating film. Maybe if I give you the description you will want to see it. In Communist Romania the government wanted it's citizens to have children--as opposed to in the Soviet Union where the government didn't want people to have kids because it would distract from them being good communists--and provided all sort of material and financial incentives to parents when they had kids. It made parents have kids they didn't want and didn't care what happened to them. This is a story of the abandoned children who live in the Bucharest subway station. It is the truly devastating picture of the post-communist experience, much more devastating and realistic than 4 months, 3 weeks, and 2 days. It is also much better than Born into Brothels...though it was similar. Basically, I am biased because I do Eastern European stuff

2) Downfall (Der Untergang) (2004) There weren't a lot of foreign films on best of lists. Sad. Because this one was 100% the best. The first time I saw it I was just spellbound. Bruno Ganz is extraordinary as Hitler. I cannot, cannot, CANNOT emphasize how amazing his acting was. The film was captivating. It gives you chills to watch it. It is very long though and somewhat laborious. I would still recommend it. It is amazing. And it has one of my favorite foreign actresses in it (one of my favorites? really? who are the others??) Alexandra Maria Lara. She is great.

1) Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind (2004) It actually sort of offends me that this wasn't at the top of every reviewer's "Best of the Decade" list. This movie is clearly the best. Think of how innovative, wonderful, sad, romantic, and visually amazing it was. 100%, unquestioned, the best movie of the Oughts.

Honorable Mentions:

~28 Days Later (2002) Also zombies (are they really zombies? they were infected with rage. Were they dead? oh, the intricacies of zombism!) and also pretty innovative. Good Work Danny Boyle. 28 Weeks Later was also enjoyable but not nearly honorable mention material.
~Band of Brothers (2001) A miniseries, but the best gd miniseries of the 2000s. The 2nd best one was clearly John Adams.
~Before Sunset (2004) I love it, and Linklater is kind of a big deal.
~Bowling for Columbine (2002) God that Michael Moore is a pain in the ass. But this one is pretty solid.
~Once (2006) when is the last time you saw a legit musical? I'm not talking Moulin Rouge! but like actually a reasonable, accessible musical. It was the last time you watched Once, thats when!
~The Ring (2002) How much did this movie re-define horror movies? Wasn't this one of the first creepy Japanese remakes? When she crawled out of the tv at the end I almost lost my shit right there in the theatre!
~Super Troopers (2001) I watched this movie once a week in college. That doesn't make it good though...but it is entirely quotable and entirely funny.
~Superbad (2007) God this movie is hilarious. HILARIOUS. The bromance, that is definitely one of the themes of the 2000s. And how sweet is Michael Cera?
~The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford (2007) This movie didn't get any credit from anyone. It was great (but very slow) with amazing acting and haunting music.
~There Will Be Blood (2007) Easily the best movie quote of the decade came from this movie. Who drinks you milkshake? I drink your milkshake. I drink it up. SLUUUUUUUUUUUURP. Very slow with amazing music and Daniel Day Lewis? Come on. That guy is a ridiculous actor.

Dishonorable Mention:
Slumdog Millionaire (2008) give me a gd break. Typical Hollywood via 3rd world country bullshit. How can the guy who directed 28 Days Later come up with this? If you wanna watch an actual movie watch City of God, or Born Into Brothels, or even Children Underground. Glamorizing poverty is gross. When you see real unfortunate situations you wont think it is so great anymore. I guess the problem is that "the masses" don't watch movies like those.
Ok. The cinematography was pretty good.

Lastly, I want to plug I don't know much about them, but they provided that sweet best of the decade graphic. They don't know they did but I just credited them, so there shouldn't be a problem, right?! (yikes) (Maybe this year when I become a professional blogger they can be one of my sponsors. Wouldn't that be fun? Please don't sue me!!)

I want to post a link to their The 50 Best Movies of the Decade. They asked their readers to pick their 10 Best Movies of the Decade. This is what they came up with:

10. The Departed
9. City of God
8. Almost Famous
7. Memento
6. Pan’s Labyrinth
5. Lost in Translation
4. There Will Be Blood
3. Amélie
2. The Royal Tenenbaums
1. Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind

I've clearly got to spend more time reading Paste Magazine, because their readers clearly know what is up.

As a final note, it was pure coincidence that the place that provided the sweet image had my #1 as their reader's #1. Isn't that fortuitous?!?!

Happy New Years, kiddies!!

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