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318

Best of 2005: Your Picks
Topic by: underdog
Posted: December 20, 2005 - 2:25 PM PST
Last Reply: July 31, 2006 - 5:03 AM PDT

page  1  2  3  4      prev | next
author topic: Best of 2005: Your Picks
Battie
post #41  on January 4, 2006 - 5:40 PM PST  
Piping in again...I liked Domino, Howl's Moving Castle, and Neil Gaiman's Mirrormask. I also kind of liked Aeon Flux. It was just appealing to the eye and almost had the surreal quality of the animation series. Sin City was nice eye candy, too. Ebert's Jury Award to The Merchant of Venice was more than well-deserved, since it FINALLY showed me why Shakespeare's plays are considered so good (I've never seen one-that hasn't been modernized-that had that kind of emotional depth). Haven't seen Brokeback Mountain, Syriana, 2046, Head-On, New World, or Memroirs of a Geisha yet. :P Also haven't seen The White Countess...

There are probably some movies from earlier this year I'm forgetting about, but Mirrormask was very enjoyable on a lot of levels, not least of which was the soundtrack.
ALittlefield
post #42  on January 5, 2006 - 8:44 AM PST  
It's interesting to note that film critics seem to have memories as short as Oscar voters; I remember that when DOWNFALL came out early last year, it recieved universal critical acclaim, but now I have yet to see it one year end top ten list.
Cugat
post #43  on January 5, 2006 - 10:13 AM PST  
On January 5, 2006 - 8:44 AM PST ALittlefield wrote:
> It's interesting to note that film critics seem to have memories as short as Oscar voters;

We've always been at war with Eurasia.
DLeonard
post #44  on January 5, 2006 - 1:54 PM PST  
Is this the year of the political drama?

Most of the films being talked about as the year's best are the ones taking on hot topics; Syriana, The Constant Gardner, Good Night and Good Luck, Munich, Crash, even Brokeback Mountain. With Jon Stewart being announced as Oscar host, things could get interesting.

Of course, the public seems to be most interested in fantasy films. What does that tell ya?

Caught Syriana the other day and found it to be an engaging and thoughtful but somewhat cluttered film. Makes me appreciate The Constant Gardner even more.

However, Syriana is certainly a vital film that explores some of the issues/situations involved with our actions, past and present, in the Middle East. Worth checking out.
ALittlefield
post #45  on January 5, 2006 - 7:11 PM PST  
> On January 5, 2006 - 1:54 PM PST DLeonard wrote:
> ---------------------------------
> Is this the year of the political drama?
>
> Most of the films being talked about as the year's best are the ones taking on hot topics; Syriana, The Constant Gardner, Good Night and Good Luck, Munich, Crash, even Brokeback Mountain. With Jon Stewart being announced as Oscar host, things could get interesting.

Well, it usually takes years from a film to go from script to screen, so I think we're seeing Hollywood's inevitable reaction to Bush.
>
> Of course, the public seems to be most interested in fantasy films. What does that tell ya?

Well, let's face it, the main moviegoing audience in America are teenage boys, who love big budget special effect movies and dim witted crude humor comedies, so those are the kind of movies that make the most money. (And, to be fair, I've already mentioned my personal enjoyment of KONG and WAR OF THE WORLDS) Hopefully Oscar nominations will help the more thoughtful political films playing, so that we can get more.
giantrobot
post #46  on January 6, 2006 - 1:28 AM PST  
> On January 5, 2006 - 1:54 PM PST DLeonard wrote:

> Caught Syriana the other day and found it to be an engaging and thoughtful but somewhat cluttered film. Makes me appreciate The Constant Gardner even more.

Likewise, I saw Syriana and then The Constant Gardner the next day. Quite similar, but the use of the emotional content in Gardner really gives more (admittedly, but effective) melodramatic weight to it that you don't get in Syriana.
giantrobot
post #47  on January 6, 2006 - 1:37 AM PST  
oh, and off the top of my head:

brokeback mountain (wow. really. incredible.)
me and you and everyone else we know
rize
thumbsucker
kung fu hustle
howl's moving castle
constant gardener
last life in the universe
(was this really this year?)

not quite:
syriana
crash
2046


haven't seen yet:
the squid and the whale
a history of violence
millions
mad hot ballroom
cache
munich
grizzly man
walk the line

--
ALittlefield
post #48  on January 8, 2006 - 5:37 PM PST  
I just saw MATCHPOINT, and it lives up to the hype. The first part of the film is an intense drama about relationships, class, lust, and, yes, sex. Then it takes a swift turn into a dark thriller that left the audience gasping until the very last shot. Who would have thought that at age 70 Woody Allen could make his first Hichcokian film and succeed so well? Put it on my list as one of the year's best.
AKrizman
post #49  on January 13, 2006 - 3:05 PM PST  
If I listed my best-of-2005 movies, it'd probably look a lot like everyone else's list (or will after I actually see some of these movies). After looking back at the movies I've seen in 2005, there's a handful of titles that would never make anyone's best-of list, but they color my impression of the 2005 movie year. So instead of listing my 10 favorite movies of 2005, here's my list of 4 guilty pleasures of 2005:

4. The Fantastic Four - On a sunny summer weekend, I walked into my neighborhood megaplex in the mood to see a popcorn flick, and I like my popcorn fluffy. It happened to be the opening weekend for The Fantastic Four, and I remembered seeing the trailer where hottie Chris Evans kept burning his shirt off. Being a shallow gay man, I'm always willing to pay $8.50 for 2 hours of gratuitous man-tit. In the theater audience, I noticed the shallow-gay-man demographic was disproportionately represented, and I know that market researchers spend too much time and money on this sort of thing for this to be a coincidence; this movie was going to have gay-appeal.

I was surprised just how gay this movie was. Through a fluke accident, our heroes develop freaky super-powers. Most of them try to keep their powers secret out of fear of being different; "It's too dangerous to go out in public" says the Invisible Girl, The Thing is rejected by his wife when she finds out, and the ironically inflexible Mr. Fantastic focuses all his efforts on trying to be normal again, inventing a machine that resembles a closet (hmmmmmm) that takes their powers away. The Flamboyant one however, has a more positive attitude, flaunting his powers and trying to encourage his friends to accept themselves for who they are - Flame On!

3. Red Eye - Wes Craven doesn't know the meaning of the word nuance. This makes for good campy horror movies, but when he attempts drama, it fails miserably. But he's found another genre where his lack of subtlety works in his favor: the suspense thriller (specifically, the sub-genre of suspense thriller that includes The Desperate Hours, Rear Window, Nick of Time, or Phone Booth - where ordinary folks find themselves in extraordinary circumstances). When the do-gooders are unimpeachably good and won't make compromises, and the evil-doers are irredeemably evil and can't be reasoned with, it simultaneously reduces the hero's options for success, and raises the stakes for her failure. Unfortunately, for Rachel McAdams, this is the sort of movie where actors rarely get kudos, but just like Hot Chick (where she plays Rob Schneider better than Rob Schneider does), she give a performance that outclasses the movie she's in.

2. Jesus is Magic - It's hard to rate concert movies among other movies. Do you judge the movie or the concert? All I know is that I never stopped laughing during this movie. Sarah Silverman's humor crosses politically correct comfort zones with jokes about rape, AIDS, Martin Luther King, and Nazi's. It's not unexplored territory, sure, but Silverman's take seems fresh compared to other luminaries of the shock-humor genre. The Farrelly Brothers temper their potentially offensive humor using the carrot-and-stick method of alternately ridiculing and flattering their victims. Trey Parker and Matt Stone usually make a thoughtful, if provocative, point so they can't be accused of using shock for shock's sake. Silverman is so non-threatening that she gets away with saying these things because you can't actually believe she means it; She wields "cute" as shield the same way Amy Sedaris wields "goofy".

1. Kiss Kiss Bang Bang - I'll remember 2005 as the year gay characters in movies transcended their own genre to other mainstream genres (I'm not counting my gay superheroes interpretation of The Fantastic Four which is probably just my imagination, but actual gay main characters): the gay cowboy movie, the gay slasher movie, and this gay detective movie. This movie fits nicely alongside other not-too-serious, not-too-silly comedy-noirs like Get Shorty, Whole Nine Yards, and Novocaine. The first two acts are brilliant and laugh-out-loud funny, but it loses focus in the last act when its self-referential humor stops being a clever commentary on the genre, and becomes an uninspired writer's shortcut. Without this flaw, this movie would make it on my best-of list instead of this one.
DSchirmer
post #50  on January 14, 2006 - 9:51 PM PST  
In No Particular Order:

Capote
Downfall
Brokeback Mountain
Constantine
Kontroll
Layer Cake
Thumbsucker
Saving Face
Gunner Palace
Look at Me


Honorable Mentions:

Dear Frankie
The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy
3-Iron
Dust to Glory
Mondovino
Shopgirl
Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room
Quality of Life


Missing in Action:

Good Night and Good Luck


Missed the 2004 List:

The Merchant of Venice


Because I Have a Featured Role in the Movie:

Come Fly With Me Nude


Looking Back  The Best Films of 1995:

Dead Man
Richard III
The Horseman on the Roof
Beyond Rangoon
Home for the Holidays
12 Monkeys
Antonias Line
The American President

Battie
post #51  on January 16, 2006 - 3:15 AM PST  
> On January 13, 2006 - 3:05 PM PST AKrizman wrote:
> ---------------------------------
> 3. Red Eye - Wes Craven doesn't know the meaning of the word nuance. This makes for good campy horror movies, but when he attempts drama, it fails miserably. But he's found another genre where his lack of subtlety works in his favor: the suspense thriller (specifically, the sub-genre of suspense thriller that includes The Desperate Hours, Rear Window, Nick of Time, or Phone Booth - where ordinary folks find themselves in extraordinary circumstances). When the do-gooders are unimpeachably good and won't make compromises, and the evil-doers are irredeemably evil and can't be reasoned with, it simultaneously reduces the hero's options for success, and raises the stakes for her failure. Unfortunately, for Rachel McAdams, this is the sort of movie where actors rarely get kudos, but just like Hot Chick (where she plays Rob Schneider better than Rob Schneider does), she give a performance that outclasses the movie she's in.
>

Besides the fact that I *like* Rachel McAdams and Wes Craven (what?, he earned my love for Freddy), her character was quite clever and decidedly intent on survival towards the end. When Rachel kicked his ass...that was just sexy. :P

That brings me to the other plane movie..Flight Plane. Jodie Foster played her part well, but erm...I guess I didn't like the movie so well. Something was off about the plot...too out there, I guess.
AKrizman
post #52  on January 16, 2006 - 11:05 AM PST  
> On January 16, 2006 - 3:15 AM PST Battie wrote:

> Besides the fact that I *like* Rachel McAdams...

> ---------------------------------

Me Too!

She's definitely talented. I think the fact that Hot Chick sucked made her performance all the more impressive.

She seriously deserves a role in a respectable movie. She needs her own Lost in Translation, Monster, or Boys Don't Cry.
ALittlefield
post #53  on January 22, 2006 - 6:10 PM PST  
Has anyone seen THE NEW WORLD yet? The reviews have been mostly positive and the subject certainly sounds interesting. Although I found THE THIN RED LINE hard to get into, I enjoyed BADLANDS, and certainly Terence Malik knows how to shoot jungles and woodlands, so I plan to see it soon.
Cinenaut
post #54  on January 23, 2006 - 11:50 AM PST  
I saw The New World last Saturday in a packed mulitplex theater matinee. Q'Orianka Kilcher makes a wonderful Pocahontas. The New World is artful and dreamlike. The camera often frames something you wouldn't expect. Much like a Robert Bresson film, sometimes we're looking at hands when we'd expect to be looking at faces, or the scene will change in the middle of a desparate battle scene.

I liked it! However, when the credits started rolling, the people be behind me basically said "WTF?" and laughed at the movie.

Girl: "We'll have to talk about this movie."
Guy: "Over a drink."
Aother guy: "Over A LOT of drinks."

I guess they were expecting Pocahontas to bust out with Colors of the Wind or something.
Gradalis
post #55  on February 13, 2006 - 2:30 PM PST  
Since no one has posted here for several weeks, perhaps the interest in this topic is long-since dead. Unfortunately, because of a commitment to a group of critics in Seattle, my list of favourites is always held in reserve until the end of January (to coincide with their annual roundtable).

I was on the road ever since and it hasn't yet appeared for public consumption. My only arbitrary limitation in making the list -- the film had to receive a U.S. theatrical release in 2005 (although, in several cases, such a release was somewhat limited).

1. Innocence
2. The Power of Nightmares
3. A History of Violence
4. Tropical Malady
5. The Beat That My Heart Skipped
6. Darwin's Nightmare
7. The Holy Girl
8. 2046
9. tout de suite
10. Paradise Now

I'll be introducing the Seattle screening of the film that tops this list in April.
underdog
post #56  on February 13, 2006 - 5:13 PM PST  
Nice list! I still haven't seen The Beat That My Heart Skipped, but it's been tops on my list for awhile. How does it compare to Fingers?
Favorably, from what I've heard...

C
Gradalis
post #57  on February 14, 2006 - 11:47 AM PST  
A rare instance (and I can only think of a few others) where the remake is arguably superior to the original.
Gradalis
post #58  on February 14, 2006 - 11:58 AM PST  
I should also note that, as an individual that has a life outside of seeing movies (unlike full-time film critics, although I wager my critical friends will dislike my presumption that they don't have a life outside of the cinema), there were plenty of motion pictures that I missed. The two that might've changed the results if I had seen them last year -- Kings & Queen and (possibly) Mysterious Skin.

I'll have to get around to seeing them eventually.
vuzh
post #59  on February 16, 2006 - 7:03 PM PST  
Grizzly Man and Kraftwerk's Minimum-Maximum were the best new releases I saw this year.

I liked "You and Me and Everyone We Know" and "Thumbsucker" but ~best~? I don't know about that.

Unfortunately, I haven't seen a lot of '05 movies yet... "Oldboy" just came in the mail from Greencine today, for example.
thespencer
post #60  on May 17, 2006 - 2:34 AM PDT  
I can't belive no one liked "Stay". Well, I did. I'd put it up there with "Me and You" as my top for 2005.
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