Friday, December 24th 2010
This is it, folks. The last of my Top 10 movie lists for 2010. Unless I get really drunk at the Christmas Eve party tonight (note: there is not Christmas Eve party tonight) and decide to post my Top 10 Top 10 Lists of 2010. Don’t think I wouldn’t. But anyway, on with the final act of my judgmental trilogy.
THE BEST MOVIES OF 2010 THAT NOBODY SAW
To close things out, I give you my list of the best movies that didn’t get the attention they deserved this year. And the winners are:
1. Never Let Me Go
An acclaimed but depressing book turned into a beautiful if bleak film that’s out of theaters before most people knew it existed? It’s like last year’s “the Road” all over again. And just as tragic.
2. the Ghost Writer
Maybe the Polanski drama kept people away, or maybe it they kept confusing it with a kids’ series or a Nicolas Cage comic book flick. Whatever the reason, audiences missed out on one of the best movies for grown-ups all year.
3. Scott Pilgrim vs. the World
Perhaps the reason it tanked in theaters is because the studio flooded its target audience with free screenings for five months before its release. By then, most of the people who’d want to see it already had.
4. the Illusionist
All right, this is a bit of a cheat, since Sylvain Chomet’s new masterpiece didn’t come out many places other than France until December, but if past audience behavior is any indication, most people will ignore it.
5. Mother and Child
While Annette Bening gets all the awards attention for her fine work in “the Kids are All Right,” her real Oscar-worthy turn as in Rodrigo Garcia’s haunting, bittersweet look at adoption from all sides, co-starring Naomi Watts and Kerry Washington.
6. Sex & Drugs & Rock & Roll
You likely didn’t hear about this biopic about polio-stricken punk rocker Ian Dury, but it proved that “Lord of the Rings” star Andy Serkis is even better without all the computer wizardry. I think it was out in the U.S. for a day or two.
7. Animal Kingdom
After wowing audiences at Sundance, this Australian import about a family of criminals failed to get much attention overseas, which is a shame since that means fewer people got to see Jackie Weaver’s incredible performance as the clan’s matriarch.
8. Please Give
Much like Lisa Cholodenko’s look at West Coast yuppie-dom in “the Kids Are All Right,” Nicole Holofcener takes a few loving swings at New Yorkers and the rationalizations that help them sleep at night.
9. Fair Game
Naomi Watts’ second entry on the list should have inspired a new swell of outrage over the Valerie Plame scandal. Instead, it just attracted dismissive comments about co-star Sean Penn’s political leanings.
10. the Switch
Maybe people stayed away because, you know, Jennifer Aniston. But this was secretly a Jason Bateman dark comedy — with plenty of scene-stealing by Jeff Goldblum.
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