The 10 Best and Worst Movies of 2008
It took me a while to catch up on Netflixing some of these, but the time has come at last to reveal my picks for the 10 best and worst films of 2008. Dig it.
Best: The Cream of the Crop
1. Happy-Go-Lucky – This was probably my favorite film of the year. The story is interesting and multi-layered, the actors (who did a lot of dialogue improvising) do a fantastic job of conveying the story’s themes through their behavior, and the pacing of the plot makes for a perfect framework for the aforementioned improvising. Impressive all around.
2. In Bruges – I loved In Bruges for its story (spare but character motivated in an authentic way) and pervading mood of doom (hey, that’s almost a palindrome). And you’ve got to love a movie that doubles as a travel guide.
3. Vicky Cristina Barcelona – Sexy Javier Bardem, adorable Penelope Cruz, and beautiful Barcelona as the backdrop for a sultry three-way romance….what more could you ask for? The all around great acting makes this one of the better Woody Allen movies of the last 15 years. Oh, and ScarJo’s in it too. I thought Rebecca Hall was allright too (she played Vicki…or Cristina…whichever one isn’t ScarJo), but her character reminded me a little too much of Diane Lane in Under the Tuscan Sun. Shudder.
4. Into the Wild – This film reminded me of how much I used to love books about wilderness survival (Island of the Blue Dolphins, Hatchet, The Boxcar Children, etc.), not to mention rebellious novels like On the Road and Catcher in the Rye. Into the Wild combines facets of both genres, with a healthy dash of Grizzly Man added to the mix. Sweeeet.
5. Milk – A very well-acted and powerful film, and I think it’s important that everybody see it. Now if we could only see a mainstream movie about happy, well-adjusted LGBT people (sorry Philadelphia, Boys Don’t Cry, and Brokeback Mountain).
6. Frost-Nixon – I enjoy things related to Watergate as much as the next girl, especially since Liz and I studied it together back in high school, and part of our curriculum involved watching sexy Robert Redford in “All the President’s Men.” Oh, young Robert Redford, how you set my heart a’flutter.
7. Let the Right One In – The coolest vampire movie I’ve seen since Interview with the Vampire. It’s moody, romantic, and creepy without being terrifying–everything the Twilight series is trying to be.
8. Slumdog Millionaire – Over-hyped, sure, but still a sweet movie. And I like that Danny Boyle is finally getting some much-deserved recognition.
9. Wall-E – Pixar movies are always good, but this one seemed particularly relevant and timely. Bravo!
10. Gran Torino – Clint Eastwood will always be a badass. The story’s kinda lame, but Clint saves it, more or less.
Space Puppies – I haven’t had a chance to see this amazing-looking cinematic achievement yet, but I’m sure it would make the top of the list if I had.
Worst: The Cream of the Crap
1. Mamma Mia – Love ABBA, loathed Mamma Mia.
2. The Hottie and the Nottie – So bad it’s almost good. But then comes the Paris Hilton farting scene.
3. Role Models – Couldn’t finish it.
4. Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull – Finished it, don’t know why.
5. Nights in Rodanthe – Couldn’t finish it.
6. Sex and the City – So disappointing.
7. Tropic Thunder – Couldn’t finish it.
8. College – Not awful, just bad.
9. The House Bunny – Just a bad ripoff of Legally Blonde.
10. Confessions of a Shopaholic – Three ‘P’ words to describe it: plodding, plotless, painful.