Tuesday, December 27, 2011

My Top Ten Favorite Movies of 2011

Confession. This year I haven't seen a lot of movies. In fact there are quite a few that came out this year that I have been dying to see, but haven't seen. I blame Netflix. I just never go to the movies anymore. Expensive and crowded.

Haven't seen

1. Crazy Stupid Love (REALLY NEED TO SEE THIS!)
2. Sherlock Holmes Dos
3. MI4 (Heard it's killer.)
4. Moneyball
5. The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo (Read the book, really want to see the movie.)

Because I haven't seen all I want to, I am only going to list my top 5 of the year until I see the others.

So I am ranking them this year as..

1. The Help
The acting, the story, the casting. Awemazing. Loved the book, but I might have loved the movie more. Great movie.
2. Bridesmaids
Crass? Yes. Inappropriate? Yes. Funny as heck? YES. Melissa McCarthy could be one of my favorite actresses.
3. Super 8
Loved feeling like a kid again. I rarely don't like J.J. Abrams though.
4. Water for Elephants.
The scenery and how it was filmed alone. Gorgeous.
5. Limitless and Horrible Bosses tie.
Both really entertaining.

Now if we are listing the worst films of 2011, sadly I have seen quite a few of them. Ranking very high on the list include..

Red Riding Hood and Sucker Punch. Not sure why I saw those. And let's be honest. Source Code was laughable.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Summer Movie Rundown

I have seen a fair amount of movies this summer. The following is my rankings, from best to worst, of the movies I have seen.

  • X-Men: First Class- I did not expect to like this movie as much as I did. As a fan of the world of the X-Men I was not expecting much after the third X-Men and the awfulness of the Wolverine origins movie. Needless to say I was pleasantly surprised by this movie. I think the cast does a great job of introducing us to characters that we already know and love.

  • Harry Potter & The Deathly Hallows Pt. 2- I liked this movie a lot, it seemed like a fitting end to the movies series but at the same time I am sad to see it end. I think the feeling of loss kept this movie from the number 1 spot. The best part of this movie is seeing how much the kids have grown since the first one 10 years ago. Plus this is easily the most action packed of the HP movies and one of the best.

  • Super8- This movie is old school and I mean that in the best way. It is all about story and that story just happens to be a monster movie caught on film by a group of young kids. It is like ET meets Cloverfield. I have yet to talk to any one that didn't enjoy this movie.

  • Captain America- Another movie that reminds me older movies and again I mean that in a good way. This movie seemed like a mash up of The Rocketeer and The Incredibles with a much scarier villain. After X-Men this is my favorite comic book inspired movie of the summer. It took a little bit to get going but there was enough humor and interesting characters to keep you interested until things really picked up. Make sure you stay till the end of the credits to see a sneak peek of next years Avengers.

  • Horrible Bosses- This movie was a good laugher, I think I was laughing through most of the movie. Just know that if rated R movies aren't for you then neither is this movie as it is very rated R in its humor.

  • Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides- This movie felt more like the first Pirates and that is a good thing. We are back to focusing on Captain Jack and his adventures and while I am sad that there was no Elizabeth Swan it is nice to meet some new Pirates to keep things fresh. Plus it is fun to spot the shots where they are hiding Penelope Cruz's baby bump through out the movie.

  • Cars 2- While this movie didn't have the heart of the first one it was a pretty well done James Bond type spy caper that just happens to be told from the point of view of Cars. Had this not been a Cars movie I am sure more people would have liked it. The reviews on this one were more mean then I would have thought over all I thought it was entertaining enough maybe a little to violent for the youngest crowd but still the trailers told you that much.

  • Bridesmaids- This movie was funny, crud and disturbing but funny. It is nice to see an all female cast headline a movie and really you can relate to certain aspects of each character here. Plus it is funny, did I mention that? I only wish the Hangover 2 had been as good as this movie.

  • Thor- If taken as a popcorn movie it is just fine, not great but not horrible. Since Thor is one of the Avengers I look at this more as an origin movie and it that regards it is much better then Wolverine.

  • Friends With Benefits- You know exactly where this movie is going and that is okay. You are most likely seeing this movie because of the cast and they all do a great job surprisingly. Plus there was more heart here then I was expecting predictable out come notwithstanding. This movie doesn't take itself to seriously and that is nice, it reminded me of a grown up Easy A.

  • Kung Fu Panda 2- Pretty disappointed by this one, it wasn't bad but it wasn't all that interesting either.

  • Larry Crowne- If this movie would have been on TV and I just stumbled across it then I am sure I would have liked it a lot better or perhaps if it had come out in the fall when there wasn't much else to see. But in the summer there is just nothing that makes it stand out. Everything about it is just ho-hum. You can wait to rent this one.

  • The Hangover Pt. 2- Sure I laughed in parts but for the most part this is the exact same movie as the first one. The only difference is that instead of Las Vegas it is set in Thailand and....nope that's about the only difference. Just watch the first one with the a/c turned off and it will be just like watching the second on.

Well I think that is most of the movies I have seen this Summer. Did I miss any that you thought were great? Or maybe some that were not great that I don't need to bother seeing, like Green Lantern perhaps? Sound off in the comments section.

Monday, April 4, 2011

2011 Movies

Well 2011 seems to be off to a rough start, so far this year I haven't seen any movies that have just left me saying 'Wow! I need to go see that again'. No, instead I have seen a bunch of movies that I can't even recall a few days later because they were just so unimpressive. In the last few weeks I have seen Source Code, Sucker Punch and Limitless and while Limitless was far and away the best movie of the three, they all left me wanting more. I just want a good movie that has a good plot and good acting and at the end I feel like it was worth the $9 bucks I just forked over in hopes of being entertained. I have hope for the summer movie crop but at the moment it seems like the best movie I have seen this year was The Adjustment Bureau and lets be honest that movie was made a few years back so does it really even count as a 2011 movie? Am I wrong is there a movie you've seen this year that just blew you away?

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Ranking the Best Picture Nominees

Well it is that time of year again when we find out what movie is deemed the Best Picture of the year. This year I saw all 10 movies and for the life of me I can't see why some of them were nominated but to each their own I suppose. Below I present my own personal rankings of this years 10 Best Picture Nominees.

  1. Toy Story 3- I know there is absolutely ZERO chance of this movie winning the prize but it really should, at least in my humble opinion. I found it to be the most overall entertaining movie of this years nominees. It had something for everyone and considering that it is a sequel to a sequel that is pretty impressive. To bad animated movies aren't taken seriously.
  2. The Kings Speech- This is the movie I fully expect to take home the big prize tonight and I am okay with that. The acting in the movie is stellar. I must admit that I have a small fascination with all things British so I am sure that helped me like this movie all the more. If I were voting member of the academy I would be marking my vote for each of the actors nominated from this movie. They all did a great job.
  3. Inception-Like Toy Story 3 there is no chance of this movie winning which is to bad because it is easily one of the most clever if not the most clever of the movies nominated this year. It is not only visually stunning to look at but it is also a head scratcher. How many levels are we down again? You will keep coming back to this movie again and again just to try and figure it out. One day big blockbuster movies will get their due and it is movies like Inception that prove why.
  4. 127 Hours- I just got back from Canyonlands National Park and I can only imagine what it would be like to be trapped all alone for so long in a helpless situation like the one depicted here. This movie makes you feel like you are there in the canyon hoping for the outcome that most people already knew was coming since this was based on real events. That fact that you are still on the edge of your seat says something about this movie. James Franco is fantastic and any other year I think he would be a lock for Best Actor but sadly Collin Firth was just a little more fantastic this year. Maybe we can hope for a tie?
  5. The Fighter- Another movie full of great acting (are you seeing a trend yet?) and based on real events. I was a little underwhelmed by this movie perhaps because I had heard so many good things about it and perhaps it was because it was one of the last movies I saw. While the acting was great I just couldn't get into this one, still a fine movie but one that I would be more likely to watch on cable then run out to see.
  6. The Social Network- Another movie that may have suffered from over hype. I guess the writing was okay and I am sure it will win in that category but overall I was just kind of bored for parts of the movie. I guess I can't relate to a tech smart kid who is worth billions.
  7. True Grit- Another well acted movie and yet another movie that I was just bored during. It seemed to me that there were long stretches during this movie where nothing was happening and then it just kind of ended. For a movie that felt as long as this one I was expecting more in the end. Plus for the life of me I don't know why Hailee Steinfeld is nominated in the Supporting Actress category, she carried this movie and should be nominated for Best Actress.
  8. Winters Bone- A depressing movie overall but one that is made bearable by its lead actress, Jennifer Lawrence, who does a great job here and would get my vote for Best Actress. Overall I left this movie feeling just blah mostly because I am sure things like this happen all the time, sadly.
  9. The Kids Are All Right- I wanted this movie to be so much better then it was. It was entertaining in parts but for all the talk of how original its story was it didn't seem all that original. Parents fighting, kids rebelling, life moving on, etc; haven't we seen this before? While I do agree that Annette Bening did a great job (and she is in fact my pick for who is going to win) I just don't feel like this movie is one of the best of the year.
  10. Black Swan- I am so not the target audience for this movie. I don't care for ballet and no amount of girl-on-girl action is going to change that. Plus I feel like the movie told you very early on how it was all going to end. At least give me a little bit of suspense to keep me awake. Sure Natalie Portman does well at making you feel like she is crazy but it almost seems like a less fun/crazy/big city version of her character in Where the Heart Is. That is to say soft spoken and unsure of herself until the end of the movie. Ground breaking? Hardly. Plus one good actor does not a great movie make.

Friday, February 25, 2011

An update on my "favorite's list"..

I have officially seen all of the best picture nominees. So I am compelled to change or rather update my previous list.

1. Inception

2 The Fighter (Loved this film. Amazing acting. Christian Bale was genius. And the fighting was so realistic.

3. 127 Hours

4. Scott Pilgrim vs. the World

5. Easy A

6. The King's Speech (The acting was excellent and the movie was really touching.)

7. The A Team

8. Red

9. How To Train Your Dragon

10. Toy Story 3

*Additions in red.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

My Top Ten Movies of 2010

Wow, I didn't realize how long it had been! Just as HE has done, here are my picks from 2010. Unlike Eric, I didn't have any trouble finding movies to list. In fact I had a hard time narrowing it down. Without further adieu, my list..

1. Inception (LOVED IT, really unique, and had me on the edge of my seat from start to finish.)
2. 127 Hours (I am putting this as number 2 because WOW. The acting, the intensity, everything. I really hope James Franco gets the Academy.)
3. Scott Pilgrim vs. the World (This movie had me laughing out loud. Loved how different it was, loved the soundtrack, loved the filming, loved it. So much in fact I saw it twice in the theatres and that's saying a lot.)
4. Easy A (Emma Stone is one of my new favorite comedians, and I will forever laugh when I hear "Pocket Full of Sunshine")
5. The A Team (I think this is lower on my list because I saw it at the drive-in and was really tired.)
6. Red (I was surprised how much I liked this movie.)
7. How to Train Your Dragon (I enjoyed this movie just a tad more than Toy Story 3, just because it was different and had a lot of heart.)
8. Toy Story 3 (Yes, I was one of those people that cried. Really touching, and a great way to end the series.)
9. The Other Guys (This movie had me cracking up the whole time. But I do tend to like Will Ferrell more than others.)
10. Alice in Wonderland (Beautiful filming, and the Queen of Hearts stole the show for me.)

Honorable mention goes to Catfish for how it haunted me, Knight and Day for surprising me how much I didn't hate Tom Cruise in it, and Date Night for the laughs and funny lines. And believe it or not I liked Devil. I thought it was good for a popcorn muncher. But unlike Eric, I am a fan of M. Knight.

I saw Black Swan, and though I liked it okay, and yes Natalie Portman was really good at acting all crazy, I just don't get all the hype. Though, it was pretty built up for me before I saw it, so it could be that.

(I should say I still haven't seen True Grit, The Fighter, or Blue Valentine. All on my list of one's I need to see.)

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Eric's Top 10 Movies of 2010

Wow! I have totally been slacking on posts here. Sorry, I was busy seeing movies and before I could come and post about the one I saw I saw another and another and well you get the point. The sad thing is that as I looked back at the movies I saw this year not that many great ones jumped out at me. Usually I have an easy time picking my Top Ten movies of the year, this year I had a hard time picking five. But fear not I finally got my list to Ten. Wanna know what movies made the list? Well keep reading.

  1. (TIE) The A-Team & Toy Story 3- I keep going back and forth over which of these movies I liked better. In the end I decided to call it a tie.
    The A-Team was just what movies should be. Big, loud, funny, action packed and highly enjoyable. Sure there was some kind of plot that makes the explosions make sense but really who needs a plot when you are having a blast? I don't I just ask that my movie choices entertain me and The A-Team did just that from start to finish. Toy Story 3 was also highly entertaining especially when you take into consideration that this is not only a sequel but a sequel to a sequel at that. The story is one that everyone can relate to and the movie pulls at everyone of your heartstrings. The last scene with Andy and his toys was enough to make me cry. I admit it. And if you didn't cry you might want to replace your batteries because you are not human.
  2. TIE (see above)
  3. Inception- This movie was a mind trick and I mean that in the best way possible. It was utterly original and just like a puzzle that you can't figure out you will keep coming back to it until you do, or until you think you have it figured out at least. The cast was a little mismatched for me but the story is what we are here for and that is where Inception really shines. Plus the special effects are hard to beat. But what I really like about this movie was the way it ended. If you haven't seen it I won't spoil anything but just say that it can go either way I wouldn't mind.
  4. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hollows Part 1- Long title but this was my favorite of the books and the movie doesn't disappoint. Sure it is much darker then the other movies but in order to be true to the books it would have to be. It is amazing to see how far the young cast has come since the first movie. They carry this movie and really it is all the better for it.
  5. The Kings Speech- This may be one of the best acted movies this year. The cast is fantastic and the story isn't bad either. Based on the true story of the rise of King George VI and his speech impediment and how his wife found an Australian speech therapist to help him overcome it. It should be noted that I find movies based on history very interesting, so that my explain why I liked this movie so much. If I had my way each of the main actors here would be taking home Oscars this year.
  6. The Town- Ben Affleck it turns out is quite the director. This could have been just your typical heist movie. Instead it is a character study of people with complicated issues to say the least. Sure the movie has a ton of bad language but sadly so does real life and even though the story is focused on bank robbers you still can't pull yourself away.
  7. Red- Much like The A-Team this movie was just fun, mindless, popcorn entertainment. The cast looks like they had a blast making the movie and that joy translates throughout the movie.
  8. 127 Hours-James Franco is great in this movie and even if you know the outcome (it is based on real events) you are still held at the edge of your seat for the whole movie. I am happy to say that I keep my eyes open the whole time, although I did cringe a few times when the arm scene came to a conclusion. This is a story of human triumph and the will to live.
  9. It's Kind of a Funny Story- If you blinked you most likely missed this movie which is too bad because it was touching and full of heart and humor that you wouldn't expect for it's subject matter. Feeling the weight of the world a young teen checks into a mental institution and there learns more about life then he could have every imagined. The great cast really takes this movie to the next level.
  10. Alice in Wonderland- After repeated viewing this movie continues to grow on me. And therefore earns a spot on my list. While this is your typical Tim Burton movie it seems grounded more by the original story of Alice in Wonderland. Plus it reminds me of the creepy made for TV movie that terrified me as a kid. I love it when movies bring up obscure memories from childhood.

Well there you have it. My favorite movies of 2010. What movies made your list? Any movies that surprised you with how good, or bad, they were. I must say that I was pleasantly surprised by Tangled and a little disappointed by True Grit. I should also note the I didn't see The Social Network and it seems like that movie is on a bunch of Top Ten lists this year.