Ten Best Films of 2004

Heksagon
Adjunct
Posts: 1071
Joined: Thu Jan 02, 2003 10:39 pm
Location: Helsinki, Finland

Postby Heksagon » Mon Jan 31, 2005 6:18 am

****

1. Bad Education
2. Twilight Samurai

***½

3. The Aviator
4. Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind
5. Kill Bill, vol. 2
6. Zatoichi
7. Before Sunset

***

8. The Incredibles
9. Evil
10. Hero
11. Super Size Me
12. Fahrenheit 9/11
13. Ghost in the Shell 2: Innocence

**½

14. Sideways
15. Touching the Void
16. Mean Girls
17. Team America: World Police
18. Running on Karma
19. The Motorcycle Diaries

**

20. Collateral
21. Spider-Man 2
22. Outfoxed
23. House of Flying Daggers
24. Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy
25. Dogville
26. The Passion of Christ



27. The Ladykillers
28. Ray
29. The Door in the Floor
30. Troy

*

31. Open Water
32. The Terminal
33. Goodbye Lenin

½

34. Shrek 2
35. Spartan

no stars

36. King Arthur

User avatar
Penelope
Site Admin
Posts: 5663
Joined: Sat Jan 31, 2004 11:47 am
Location: Tampa, FL, USA

Postby Penelope » Sun Jan 30, 2005 5:15 pm

Lates update:


1. Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind – ****
2. Before Sunset – ****
3. Spider-Man 2 – ****

4. Feux Rouges – ***½
5. Kinsey – ***½
6. A Very Long Engagement – ***½
7. Spring Summer Autumn Winter and...Spring– ***½
8. Sideways – ***½
9. Maria Full of Grace – ***½

10. Fahrenheit 9/11 – ***
11. Mean Girls – ***
12. The Motorcycle Diaries – ***
13. Proteus – ***
14. In Good Company – ***
15. The Dreamers – ***
16. Bon Voyage – ***
17. Hotel Rwanda – ***
18. Being Julia – ***
19. The Phantom of the Opera – ***
20. National Treasure – ***
21. Finding Neverland – ***
22. Garden State – ***
23. Kill Bill: Vol. 2 – ***
24. Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban – ***
25. The Mother – ***
26. Ray – ***
27. Beyond the Sea – ***
28. Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story – ***
29. Jersey Girl – ***
30. The Stepford Wives – ***
31. The Day After Tomorrow – ***
32. Ella Enchanted – ***

33. The Aviator – **½
34. The Manchurian Candidate – **½
35. Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason – **½
36. Alexander – **½
37. Eurotrip – **½
38. Win a Date with Tad Hamilton! – **½
39. The Prince and Me – **½
40. Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy – **½
41. The Notebook – **½
42. Secret Window – **½
43. Saved! – **½
44. Troy – **½
45. 50 First Dates – **½
46. Meet the Fockers – **½

47. Closer – **
48. Collateral – **
49. Million Dollar Baby – **
50. Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow – **
51. Vanity Fair – **
52. I (Heart) Huckabee’s – **
53. The Bourne Supremacy – **
54. King Arthur – **
55. The Terminal – **
56. Connie and Carla – **
"...it is the weak who are cruel, and...gentleness is only to be expected from the strong." - Leo Reston

"Cruelty might be very human, and it might be cultural, but it's not acceptable." - Jodie Foster

User avatar
criddic3
Tenured
Posts: 2666
Joined: Thu Jan 09, 2003 11:08 pm
Location: New York, USA
Contact:

Postby criddic3 » Wed Jan 26, 2005 6:45 pm

I am so glad someone else liked Beyond the Sea.
"If you can't stand the nut on the left and you can't stand the nut on the right, go for the Johnson,” Jonathan S. Bush (10/21/2016)

Big Magilla
Site Admin
Posts: 14722
Joined: Wed Jan 01, 2003 3:22 pm
Location: Jersey Shore

Postby Big Magilla » Mon Jan 24, 2005 11:10 pm

Great to have your insight on this year's race, Pamela-Marie.

Million Dollar Baby is having that kind of effect on people. I ran into a lady friend who isn't exactly a pushover for emotional drama, at a party a few weeks ago. She was still devastated a week after seeing the film and wanted my assurance that it was the one to beat for best picture and director. When I told her it was a close race between MDB, The Aviator and Sideways, she wanted to know which one I was rooting for. When I told her I was leaning toward Sideways she said "really" and quickly excused herself. She couldn't bear to think that anyone would want anything else to win over MDB. If the film has that kind of effect on AMPAS voters, it will be virtually unbeatable.

Pamela-Marie
Graduate
Posts: 145
Joined: Tue Jan 14, 2003 3:27 am
Location: n/a
Contact:

Postby Pamela-Marie » Mon Jan 24, 2005 7:05 pm

Okay, okay, before everyone starts going crazy with, "you're back", "you're back", let me explain. Last month Magilla ever so nicely wrote me and invited me to weigh on the Oscar season and I appreciated it, but I wasn't planning to until I realized I was talking my mother's ear off nearly every other night about the Oscar race (like for example explaining in depth the alphabetical cheat sheet for the nominations tomorrow, which is _really_ rough in the best actor category where only one potential nominee name starts with a letter farther down the alphabet than "G"!). I realized I needed to be here to get it off my chest and to save my mother from all my ramblings. So I'm here for the Oscar season (baring health issues of course) and that's all I can guarantee.

Anywho ... This year was an interesting year for film because most films IMO weren't that bad and many were quite good, but a shocking amount of them were not "great". Usually there is only a handful of "great" films a year and sometimes there is the rare year when it is raining film gems. This year, however, was unique because a lot of films were good, some even bordering on great, but they just missed the mark for whatever reasons. That makes for a weird film year but an incredibly frustrating Oscar season because more pedestrian and "good" films are trumping the "great" ones. Oh well, what else is new?

So here's my top ten list with some of the honorable mentions (there were many, many more than the ones I list) that could have ended up on my top ten list had I just decided to move a few films around to fit my mood.

1. Million Dollar Baby -- My mother knew how badly I wanted to see this film and when I spoke to her after seeing it, hours later, I was unable to even put into words how splendid the film was. The only word that came out of my mouth was "re-splendid" and that didn't even come close to describing how I felt (nor was I even sure it was a word). The film is just perfect, just perfect. I have been a sucker for a Clint Eastwood film for decades now (well except for Bridges of Madison County because I hated the book; even he and Meryl couldn't save it for me), I adore both Morgan and Hilary, and I've been a boxing fan since I was a toddler. But you just can't argue the perfect depth of the screenplay, the serenity of the score (it so sucks that it's ineligible!), the layers in everyone's performances (even peripheral characters like Danger), and then the perfect, absolutely perfect direction. I know Martin's got the Oscar in the bag because he played it safe, contemporary and made a solid film with good direction. But the way Clint made boxing come alive only reminded me how much bolder (and rather successful) Martin was in Raging Bull and didn't even really bother with in a film about planes and flying (more about that later). Did I mention the film is perfect? I know Clint has no chance of getting an acting nomination, but lord he should (and he should have from us as well, I expected more from us)! Okay, I'll stop rambling now ...

2. Before Sunset -- I think the reason I like this film so much is because it a sequel. Before Sunrise was a good, enjoyable, solid film. But Before Sunset is one of the few sequels that uses the fact that we know these characters, but not really to its' advantage. In a way that makes the film, miles and miles better than Before Sunrise. It has a depth the first film could have never managed and an opportunity by being a sequel that is not wasted.

3. Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind -- I love and have loved nearly every person in the cast and behind the scenes for a long time, so it was an easy sell. I think in some ways it is better than my favorite film of a couple of years ago, Adaptation. I suppose by being "out there" to begin with, the twists the script took made it more palatable than when it happened in Adaptation.

4. Kinsey -- I love this film! Again, a bias, any film with Timothy Hutton gets seen by me even once. So I saw this film with only one interest (even though I like many of the other actors in the film) but the film was so haunting and yet so simple. Kinsey did what nearly no other bio-pic this year managed to do, focus on the person and not the events, which is the stumbling block of nearly every male bio-pic. And Peter, Laura, and Liam haunt me in this film, they really devastated me in a way that no other film did until Million Dollar Baby.

5. Sideways -- Here is the thing about Sideways, it's a smart, fun, and entertaining film ... but if you try to analyze it, it will seem a mess. I've decided Sideways, being in essence nothing more than a unique comedy isn't your regular "independent" film that you can digest and regurgitate over and over again. But that doesn't make it any less of a film of wonderful performances and wonderful moments and in a year where many, many films were "good" but not "great", it easily makes the cut. I will say this though, one of the reasons it is so high on my list is because Church and Oh were absolutely fantastic! Oh and yes, I have trouble with Payne's body of work. Only Election has really been flawless IMO, but this film still works.

6. The Incredibles -- If I had my druthers this film would somehow be nominated for best picture and animated if the choices are as predictable and middling as I suspect they'll be with the exception of Sideways and Million Dollar Baby. Really what I love about this film is that it is one of the best character studies, comedies, and films of the year, live action or animated. Ironically, there are less holes when you think back on The Incredibles than when you rethink Sideways.

7. Maria Full of Grace -- Catalina is great, she and the script just make everything come to life, nothing feels false, it instead feels eye opening and real.

8. Bad Education -- BTW, we are now leaving the "great" film territory and going into "very, very good". I'm a sucker for films like this, but most films usually are not as bold and unflinching and leave me unsatisfied in some respect. It reminded me actually of Y Tu Mama Tambien (for the obvious reasons and then some not so obvious), but took the realism that script touched upon and instead abandoned conventionalism. That does make it hard to digest, but I enjoyed it.

9. Friday Night Lights -- This comes under the category, "sleeper hit" IMO. I expected nothing from this film, but the way they so beautifully dealt with high school football just bowled me over. And yes, I'm a sucker for Billy Bob, so that helps.

10. Vera Drake -- Imelda Staunton is heartbreaking, but that's no surprise to me, I'm a Kenneth Branagh fan, I've seen her bring humanity, life, and depth to even the smallest parts whether it was Much Ado About Nothing or the incredible range in her performance in Peter's Friends (she is really great in that one but so is Emma). Imelda and Phil's performances really elevate the film for me but it does lack IMO the gravitas of other films that just didn't have the same level of acting.

Honorable Mentions (in alphabetical order):

The Aviator -- I really loved this film, but as I said, Martin ironically plays it safe in the direction considering his history. And it stands out even more in scenes when you see the lengths of what Hughes was willing to do for his films and it's clear Martin is not doing the same, especially in the flying scenes. But I did love the film. I like Leo, I always have, I particularly noticed how he managed the eyebrow thing throughout the film. I like the script (I have OCD and they got that down), I like Kate, and I love Alan and Cate. Cate and her Katherine were my favorite part of the film, in fact, I think somehow, they made her come alive more than Howard. I also surprisingly really enjoyed Alec. The split screen between he and Leo on the other side of the door, I actually mimicked slapping him I was so angry, effective performance I'd say. I've got no problem with this film winning best picture, but considering how much I loved Baby, of course, I wouldn't prefer it.

Beyond the Sea -- Okay, I actually almost chickened out from even putting this on the list, not because I didn't love it, but because I've been off this board for six months and it seems liked every time I dared lurk something negative was being said about the film (before some had even seen it) or Kevin. And I didn't want my first post in ages to be met with grief for enjoying a film. But darn it, I loved it, so there! And yes, everyone here knows I love Spacey, but I was actually quite dubious about the film and had added pressure because my mother is a huge Bobby Darin fan and knows in detail his life and she was going to see it in the theater (the first film she's gone out to see since Much Ado About Nothing!), so I waited until someone that knew something about the man judged it before I even dared even have an opinion of it. Here's the thing about the film, it sticks with me. Even if I were to acknowledge every little thing one could nitpick about, when all is said and done, it sticks with me. Isn't that what best lists are about? Oh sure, I could ramble on about performances (I was really impressed by Kate, she nailed Sandra in my opinion), the way they told the story (for example the way they used the Oscar argument to show in a condensed way the tumultuousness of their marriage), the singing, and so on. But what it comes down to is this; it was one of the only films I wanted to see again, it was one of the only bio-pics this year that managed to capture the "essence" of the real man, my mother loved it, and it stuck with me.

Collateral -- Lord help me I liked yet, _another_ Tom Cruise film, I must be losing my mind. And worse still I like it _because_ of Tom Cruise. Foxx was fine, Jada was wonderful, and the plot was, well ... but the kitschy characterization Cruise brought to Vincent just makes this film a bit of guilty pleasure for me. Sort of like Mission Impossible 2 actually.

Garden State -- My bias here is the cast and my adoration for Braff. It's not a perfect film by any means, but it is enjoyable and fun.

Hero -- House of Flying Daggers would probably would have not seemed so repetitive, hollow, and "flashy" without Hero opening this year. In fact, Hero would have been on my top ten list had it not technically been a 2003 release.

Hotel Rwanda -- No, the film is not an effective bio-pic of Paul, but I'm not entirely sure that was the point of the film. The story is about Rwanda and the genocide, not Paul. And even though I know a lot more about what happened there than the average person, the film really effectively showed the devastation IMO. Sophie blew me away! I've never seen anything like her work in this film, she shines and really has more character and depth than anyone else in the film. One thing though, I was _really_ distracted by how hot Joaquin looked and I was so relieved he left the film early enough that I could focus on the film.

In Good Company -- Speaking of hot, I think this is the first time I was so overwhelming attracted to _all_ (yes I said all) the leads. Again, bias, love Dennis, Topher, and Scarlett. What I really liked about this film was the way they poked fun at all the generational cliches and divides whether it was between big business vs. small business, Dan and Carter, Dan and Alex, or even Carter and Alex. I also really adored the unique ending. It could have really wrapped everything up neatly in a bow and it _did_ do a little bit of that technically, but no where near the way they could have. The acting was wonderful (was Clark Gregg an incredibly effective foil or what?) and I just really enjoyed it.

Mean Girls -- Lindsay Lohan and Lacey Chabert are my reason for this being on the list. The script was quite cute and fun, but veered out of my taste of humor a couple of times. Still it worked really well.

The Merchant of Venice -- Again, bias here, love Shakespeare, Irons and Joseph Finnes. Pacino actually surprised me here, I thought he'd be really, really a bad choice, but he pulled it off. The performances are great and this is one of my favorite Shakespeare plays ... but I'm spoiled by Branagh's Shakespeare interpretations so there is only so much I could love this.
-- "Say I was Tom Cruise, where would you seat me?"
-- "In acting class."
Gilmore Girls, 10/28/03

Sabin
Laureate
Posts: 6754
Joined: Thu Jan 02, 2003 12:52 am
Contact:

Postby Sabin » Thu Jan 20, 2005 10:54 am

A year ago, I borrowed a friends "Best of Gondry" video. Not only are his music videos just brilliant, but his student film is adorable and he's a charming, self-effacing guy as well. Thoroughly enjoyable.

Different strokes though, I guess.

I've bumped "Birth" up a little bit. I still say the ending is not satisfying, but mesmerizing really is the key word here when describing this film.
Philomena is one of the year's best Philomenas!

User avatar
Eric
Tenured
Posts: 2721
Joined: Wed Jan 01, 2003 11:18 pm
Location: Minneapolis, Minnesota
Contact:

Postby Eric » Tue Jan 18, 2005 11:41 pm

Damien wrote:Eric, Twentynine Palms was such a disappointment for me -- it struck me as very puerile, and one of those films which states its purpose withing the first 15 minutes, and then has nothing to add -- and the remaining running time was torture to sit through. As to Anatomy of Hell, well there is, I suppose, something to be said about a film in which a woman wakes up to find a garden hoe inserted in her vagina.

LOL. Yeah, I haven't exactly been on the naturalistic kick this last year, admittedly (one of the main reasons I still haven't gotten out to see Kinsey, though I can't wait to see *that* part), and I can't think of anything more to my tastes than that particular Anatomy scene, especially since that hoe looks to be some ten or fifteen pounds heavy.

I can agree to disagree regarding Gondry, though. His music videos in particular put most full-length films to shame.

User avatar
Damien
Laureate
Posts: 6331
Joined: Wed Jan 01, 2003 8:43 pm
Location: New York, New York
Contact:

Postby Damien » Tue Jan 18, 2005 10:03 pm

Sonic, as for Zelary I have to admit that I'm a sucker for movies about the Resistance, and will cut slack to things like Lucie Aubrac and Charlotte Gray that I wouldn't for other genres. What can I say, Zelary got to me even when I was recognizing that it wasn't all that good.

Eric, Twentynine Palms was such a disappointment for me -- it struck me as very puerile, and one of those films which states its purpose withing the first 15 minutes, and then has nothing to add -- and the remaining running time was torture to sit through. As to Anatomy of Hell, well there is, I suppose, something to be said about a film in which a woman wakes up to find a garden hoe inserted in her vagina.

Sabin, regarding Eternal Sunshine see my comment above regarding Twentynine Palms -- except that Eternal Sunshine had even less to say and said it in an infinitely more obnoxious way. Gondy's direction is completely self-undulgent and completely incoherent -- he's apparently one of these fools who thinks that because you're a director you have to make sure the world knows you're "directing" - hence a camera that can't stay still for more than two seconds and equally frenetic editing: neither of which can disguise the fact that there's no there there. I find the film totally superficial and insufferable as hell. And if someone ever sees Michael Gondry heading to another film set, that person should run him down with a truck -- and, as a result, will win the Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award.

Interestingly, Birth and Eternal Sunshine deal with similar issues: the nature of love, memory and dealing with loss, and the question of identity, but the end results couldn't be more different. (These are also themes of Before Sunset.) Jonathan Glazer created a fascinating, disturbing and haunting film He impeccably fashioned peccably creates an unsettling ambience, a a fairly Kubrickian world in which you feel that everyone’s a prisoner (life on Central Park West never seemed so unappealing or dismal). Ultimately, it’s a film about longing, and as such it is terrifically moving (that’s in addition to its creepiness). And it also questions perceptions -- while Kidman pines for her first husband, we hear her mother, Lauren Bacall, say she herself nevert liked the guy. The movie is maybe a tad too hermetic, but I found it mesmerizing.
"Y'know, that's one of the things I like about Mitt Romney. He's been consistent since he changed his mind." -- Christine O'Donnell

anonymous1980
Emeritus
Posts: 4880
Joined: Wed Jan 01, 2003 10:03 pm
Location: Manila
Contact:

Postby anonymous1980 » Tue Jan 18, 2005 1:23 am

I've included your 2004 round-up lists here.

I've incorporated them and posting the results in the next update. I hope you guys don't mind.

User avatar
Eric
Tenured
Posts: 2721
Joined: Wed Jan 01, 2003 11:18 pm
Location: Minneapolis, Minnesota
Contact:

Postby Eric » Sun Jan 16, 2005 10:52 pm

--Sabin wrote:Re: Zelary. Forget that. Do you have any idea how difficult it is for me to see Eternal Sunshine...'s Michel Gondry just slightly below Joel Schumacher and Marc Forster and a smidgen above M. Night Shyamalan?

LOL...

Damien, Sabin isn't the only one whose cinephile compass is pointed in a different direction from yours this year. Of course, I am the only person in the entire world who really liked Anatomy of Hell (once I'd given it some time to marinate in its own, erm... juices, naturally).

EDIT: Also, forget Zelary, forget Eternal Sunshine. I never thought I'd see a year in which a film directed by Kevin Spacey placed nine slots higher than a film directed by Bruno Dumont. I can't remember if you were a fan of Tsai Ming-liang's previous films or not, offhand.




Edited By Big Magilla on 1243662551

Sabin
Laureate
Posts: 6754
Joined: Thu Jan 02, 2003 12:52 am
Contact:

Postby Sabin » Sun Jan 16, 2005 12:36 pm

Re: Birth. After the credits, I looked behind me and saw maybe seven people in the theater besides me, none of them happy at what they had seen in the least. I think a few immediately walked into "House of Flying Daggers" afterwards. The theater is absolutely the place to see this film. There is a sense of atmosphere in this film that ranks it as one of the year's technical triumphs. I keep thinking about certain scenes again and again: the opening tracking shot, probably the ghostliest sex scene of the year, lil' Bright lightly kicking Huston's ankle during a piano recital, etc. Really interesting stuff, though not entirely satisfying. Probably more of a three star film than the two-and-a-half I gave it.

Re: Zelary. Forget that. Do you have any idea how difficult it is for me to see Eternal Sunshine...'s Michel Gondry just slightly below Joel Schumacher and Marc Forster and a smidgen above M. Night Shyamalan?
Philomena is one of the year's best Philomenas!

User avatar
Sonic Youth
Laureate
Posts: 7253
Joined: Wed Jan 01, 2003 8:35 pm
Location: USA

Postby Sonic Youth » Sun Jan 16, 2005 11:36 am

What I'm wondering is how a floorboard-creaker like Zelary made it so high.

I'm upset. The studios re-released Birth last week, then pulled it from all the theaters at the end of the week. I was too sick to go see it.
"What the hell?"
Win Butler

Sabin
Laureate
Posts: 6754
Joined: Thu Jan 02, 2003 12:52 am
Contact:

Postby Sabin » Sun Jan 16, 2005 11:29 am

Damien, thoughts on "Birth"? Just wondering. Nobody's really seen it.
Philomena is one of the year's best Philomenas!

User avatar
Damien
Laureate
Posts: 6331
Joined: Wed Jan 01, 2003 8:43 pm
Location: New York, New York
Contact:

Postby Damien » Sun Jan 16, 2005 2:13 am

Here's my list at the 50 movie point:

4 Stars:

1. Kinsey (Bill Condon)
2. The Dreamers (Bernardo Bertolucci)
3. Before Sunset (Richard Linklater)
4. Home Of The Brave (Paolo di Florio)

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-

3½ Stars:

5. In Good Company (Paul Weitz)
6. Fahrenheit 9/11 (Michael Moore)
7. Birth (Jonathan Glazer)
8. A Dirty Shame (John Waters)
9. Notre Musique (Jean-Luc Godard)
10. The Distant Station (Alireza Raisian)

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-

3 Stars:

11. Distant (Nuri Bilge Ceylan)
12. The Motorcycle Diaries (Walter Salles)
13. The Story Of The Weeping Camel (Byambasuren Davaa and Luigi Falorni)
14. End Of The World: The Story Of The Ramones (Jim Fields and Michael Gramaglia)
15. Blissfully Yours (Apichatpong Weerasethakul)
16. Fear And Loathing (Alain Corneau)
17. I Heart Huckabees (David O. Russell)
18. The Assassination Of Richard Nixon (Neils Mueller)
19. A Head In The Clouds (John Duigan)
20. Zelary (Ondrej Trojan)
21. Spider-man 2 (Sam Raimi)


=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-

2 ½ Stars:

22 The Return (Andrei Zvyagintsev)
23. A Home At The End Of The World (Michael Mayer)
24. The Aviator (Martin Scorsese)
25. Hotel Rwanda (Terry George)
26. The Stepford Wives (Frank Oz)
27. Tarnation (Jonathan Caouette)
28. Ray (Taylor Hackford)
29. Sky Captain And The World Of Tomorrow (Kerry Conran)
30. Strayed (Andre Téchiné)
31. The Door In The Floor (Tod Williams)

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-

2 Stars:

32. Beyond The Sea (Kevin Spacey)
33. Collateral (Michael Mann)
34. Sideways (Alexander Payne)
35. Father And Son (Aleksandr Sokurov)
36. A Very Long Engagement (Jean-Pierre Jeunet)
37. De-Lovely (Irwin Winkler)
38. The Sea Within (Alejandro Amenábar)
39. Hero (Yimou Zhang)
40. Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter . . . And Spring (Ki-duk Kim)
41. Twentynine Palms (Bruno Dumont)
42. Closer (Mike Nichols)
43. Goodbye, Dragon Inn (Tsai Ming-liang)
44. Sex Is Comedy (Catherine Breillat)
45. Anatomy Of Hell (Catherine Breillat)
46. Raja (Jacques Doillon)

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-

1 ½ Stars:

47. Phantom Of The Opera (Joel Schumacher)
48. Finding Neverland (Marc Forster)
49. Eternal Sunshine Of The Spotless Mind (Michel Godry)
50. The Village (M. Night Shyalaman)
"Y'know, that's one of the things I like about Mitt Romney. He's been consistent since he changed his mind." -- Christine O'Donnell

abcinyvr
Graduate
Posts: 248
Joined: Sat Oct 11, 2003 5:58 pm
Location: Vancouver Canada
Contact:

Postby abcinyvr » Sun Jan 02, 2005 2:05 am

Top Ten List – 2004

Each year I make a list of the ten films that I enjoyed the most. Not the ten best movies – although the two might be identical. I also do not rate by a star system (sorry)– but most of these ten are four star films.
I have not seen Closer. Hotel Rwanda and Million Dollar Baby have not opened yet in Vancouver.
(Note, The Delicate Art of Parking, although released theatrically in 2004, played here at the Film Fest in 2003 and was on last years list.)

1. Vera Drake – Mike Leigh is one of my favorite directors and I have seen almost every one of his films. This was perfection.
2. Step Into Liquid – This was beyond being just a film to me. I saw it twice in wide-eyed amazement – and could watch it every day.
3. The Incredibles – An absolute blast.
4. Shrek 2 – I went into this expecting to be only reminded of how much I enjoyed the original. It made me forget it.
5. Code 46 – Like Mike Leigh, Michael Winterbottom is a director I will always trust. This film had a magic to it that I see only on rare occasions. Samantha Morton on the screen was hypnotizing (cliché I know, but it’s true).
6. Hero – Tony Leung, Maggie Cheung, Zhang Ziyi? Amazing cinematography and sets? What more could I want? Worth the two year wait.
7. Sideways – Went to see this one reluctantly. I had thought that Election was over praised – especially on this board – and About Schmidt was about the same. Sideways is a perfect movie. I really feel that it will live on over the next decades in the way that Annie Hall has done.
8. House of Flying Daggers – Much in the way that I loved Hero’s style and colour I loved this films story. I was very surprised by how moved I was during the final scenes.
9. The Mother – Contrary to what the media was focusing on in this film – the sexual relationship between Anne Reid and Daniel Craig – what the movie was about was the mothers relationship between her and her son, and her and her daughter. And those scenes were ones I’ve never seen in a movie before. Hanif Kureishi is a wonderful writer.
10. Ray – Once again I went into the theatre with hesitation and was surprised by what a success this was. It’s just such a traditional form of film making. And I’m a sucker for movies like that.

The next ten…
Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind – I only saw this a few days ago. Jim Carrey showed every emotion and feeling with such a sad beauty. What a crime that he may be lost in the Oscar shuffle this year.
The Triplets of Belleville
The Prisoner of Azkaban – The first two movies were fun but this was A MOVIE!
Girl With A Pearl Earring
The Corporation – three hours wasn’t enough!
Kill Bill Vol. 2
Kinsey
A Very Long Engagement – not what I had expected as far as the storyline went, but wonderful.
The Life Aquatic With Steve Zissou – fun.
The Aviator – the big Hollywood Xmas epic.

Disappointments:
Elephant – the walking, walking, walking, and the long drawn out camera shots worked – in Gerry, not in this one. Boring and pointless.
Seducing Doctor Lewis – Waking Ned Devine and Local Hero this was NOT
The Bourne Identity – I didn’t buy the cheap low-cost, heavily edited, jiggle-cam chase scenes for a second – and there was nothing else to watch after Franke Potente was gone.
The Stepford Wives – Not even ‘so bad that it’s good’.
Kontroll – I thought it was an annoying Scorcese/NYPD Blue rip-off, but everyone else seemed to love it.

Top Ten Film Fest list 2004 – I made it 13 (out of the 41 that I saw) only because 11, 12 and 13 are official Oscar entries.

The Overture (Thailand)
Arahan (South Korea)
Terkel In Trouble (Denmark)
Hari Om (India)
Baytong (Thailand)
The Nomi Song (Germany)
Channel-Swimmers (Germany)
Dear Frankie (UK)
Elles Etaient Cinq (Canada)
Imelda (USA)
Up and Down (Czech Rep.)
Cold Light (Iceland)
Campfire (Israel)

The Doc Year.
This was the year of the Documentary. There are three just in the Fest list above. I consider Michael Moore to be my personal hero, but F9/11 was not his best and not the best of the year. I found it to be a case of 'Concept over Content'. The Corporation deserved the attention that F9/11 got. And both Control Room and The World According to Bush were better documentaries.


Return to “2000 - 2007”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest