ive been thinking of my favorite movies of 2009. welp, its pretty self-explanatory. with that said, the movies i most want to see from this year that i havent seen yet are: the hurt locker, UP, zombieland, a serious man, the lovely bones, up in the air, funny people, drag me to hell, benjamin button, the imaginarium of dr. parnassus, public enemies, and paul blart (just kidding on that one)
movies i dont want to see: star trek, avatar, anything with nicolas cage (except the rock, con air or raising arizona), sherlock holmes, 2012, terminator salvation
movies that were good but didnt make the cut: the hangover
best movies i rented from netflix this year but werent from 2009: o brother, where art thou? (gotta love a Homer rewrite), the king of kong, vicky cristina barcelona, tell no one (SWEET movie!), milk, diner (one of my all-time favorite throwbacks), american teen (really entertaining and interesting documentary of high school life from several students perspectives), the wrestler, let the right one in (best scary movie ive seen in a long time… it wasnt that scary, and it was scary in the right ways. and also like twilight, except good and scandinavian), i am trying to break your heart, do the right thing, man on a wire
in the order in which i saw them…
coraline: maybe its because i watched this on the plane to seattle (which i was real excited for) or maybe because im a sucker for this kind of claymation/pixar sort of thing, but i liked this movie. it had a certain… i dunno, charm. dont take my word for it.
adventureland: as mark said earlier this year on his very own blog:
In Adventureland, Jesse Eisenberg’s character learns that amusement parks aren’t the only place with games rigged for the honest and trusting to always lose. Upon hire, Eisenberg is deemed a “Games” guy, a group comically reserved to the intellectuals and introverts unworthy of being ride operators. The main characters running around with “Games Games Games” printed on their chests is the perfect exemplification of Greg Motolla’s well-written, subtle script.
its hard to describe this kind of movie without sounding naive or childish for thinking movies are like real life, but its comforting to know that other people have gone through similar experiences with growing up. how do we find happiness in the midst of seemingly endless boredom and blah? how do we handle these “once in a lifetime” character building events that shape our lives? lifes all about luck and chance sometimes, you just gotta make the best of it. besides that, kristen stewart has a weird, surly appeal that is somehow irresistible to me.
500 days of summer: again, in avoidance of repeating myself or sounding like a total idiot who thinks movies are real life, this is hard to explain. dont keep reading if you havent seen this. i think this movie stood out in how it demonstrated that a lot of times we remember things the way we want to remember them, and not how they actually were. in other words, sometimes the grass is greener in reflection than in reality. sorry for the weird analogy. but i really liked the relationship perspective from the male side and the falling in and out of love thing.
inglourious basterds: i think this is one of the more polarizing movies from the last few years. i would put christoph waltz’s nazi officer up there with daniel day-lewis from ‘there will be blood’, forrest whittaker from ‘the last king of scotland’ and javier bardem from ‘no country for old men’ for ‘most realistically scary person from a movie’ from the last decade. with that said, i think i fell in love with melanie laurent in this movie. dont read anymore if you haven seen it yet. i think the part that sold me on this movie was towards the end when the basterds are plotting to kill all the nazis while the nazis watch a propaganda flick. the nazis in the crowd all laugh and cheer as the american soldiers are picked off by a sniper. within a few minutes, the real life crowd is laughing and cheering as the nazis are picked off by the basterds or burn in the theatre. after i thought about it, i felt kind of bad for rooting for the various forms of revenge that form the plot of this movie. really, we all share a little hate or prejudice in our hearts, its all about what side we are rooting for.
district 9: i think this movie had the most unrealized potential of the group. i hoped they would play out the symbolic prejudice a little longer – i mean the movie takes place in south africa. its not like it was a secret what this movie was implying. by the end i think it slipped into too much of a shooter. the action and special effects were great but that stuff just doesnt impress me as much as when i was, say, 12. maybe im getting old or maybe im an elitist, i dont know. i think they could have said a lot in a subtle way but balked in order to make a more appealing movie for the masses.