10. Where the Wild Things Are – The hype didn’t help but this film still delivers on capturing the imaginations and confusions of childhood.
9. Hurt Locker – Intense! The tensions of life and death situations in war torn Iraq are portrayed with chilling realism. I’m never joining the army…
8. Anvil – Real life Spinal Tap. This doco is as much about human spirit and being true to one’s passions as it is about the funny fortunes of a forgotten hair metal band that never gave up the dream.
7. Inglorious Basterds – Tarantino gives his unique view of the world once again with this masterpiece. Tensions rise in each slow burning scene before letting the viewer relax for only a moment before the next one lights up the theatre.
6. Avatar – An amazing cinematic experience. One to tell the grandkids about.
5. Zombieland – An unexpected gem. Uses a tired genre, boy meets girl and odd couple clichés, and predictable story arcs yet this film has limitless charm and perfect casting to put a fresh spin on all the old storytelling tricks.
4. Hangover – Insanely funny movie. Brought Zach Galifianakis to the mainstream and he delivered. Full of great one liners and moments with a storyline that takes the characters and audience on a rollercoaster ride around Vegas.
3. A Serious Man – I think I will be forever intrigued by this film. The Coens seem faultless as they continue to break all the rules of cinema. This story is about so many things and nothing at the same time. It raises the eternal question and gives us all the answers we don’t want to believe.
2. District 9 – I don’t know how Neill Blomkamp pulled this one off. With a tiny budget for his epic story he uses a lost alien colony to show us the weaknesses in humanity and the hypocrisies of race and class separation in society. Wickers is an amazing character. I love the fact that it all happens in South Africa, it is so free of the restraints of a Hollywood blockbuster.
1. Up – Never have I felt like a kid this much since, well, I was a kid. The idea is far fetched and childish, as are the characters and creatures and yet the whole movie just made me smile, choke up, get shivers, laugh. It was just so much fun to believe in this movie. All the emotions felt by the good guys in the movie were felt by me. I don’t know how Pixar do it, but I hope they keep doing it.
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