Monday, January 05, 2009

The Best of 2008: Movies

Having averaged one movie per day for the past 3 weeks, in theaters and on DVD, I have now seen most of the films that have been found on other people’s Best of 2008 lists. Hence, my own list won’t exactly be revelatory, but I now feel somewhat qualified to make one. Certainly, there are still many movies I haven’t seen, some of which might belong here. Also, except in some cases where the movie is already on DVD and I’ve watched it a second time, my opinions—especially in terms of ranking the movies against each other—are based on a one-time viewing. It’s entirely possible I didn’t entirely “get” a certain movie or saw it in a less than idyllic atmosphere, etc. Speaking of which, between old people talking obliviously and young people texting and otherwise using their cell phones, I think I’ll gladly revert to watching at home or going only to movies when the theater is mostly empty.

That said, in order, here are my picks for The 10 Best Movies of 2008:

1. Frost/Nixon
2. Milk
3. Slumdog Millionaire
4. Doubt
5. The Dark Knight
6. The Wrestler
7. Gran Torino
8. Changeling
9. Rachel Getting Married
10. Wall-E

Honorable Mentions

The Curious Case of Benjamin Button
Snow Angels
Iron Man

Others liked these more than me

Revolutionary Road
The Reader

Ones I didn’t see that might belong

Vicky Cristina Barcelona
Wendy & Lucy
Nothing But the Truth

Best Performances

Frank Langella – Frost/Nixon
Heath Ledger – The Dark Knight
Sean Penn – Milk
Mickey Rourke – The Wrestler
Philip Seymour Hoffman – Doubt

Angelina Jolie – Changeling
Anne Hathaway – Rachel Getting Married
Meryl Streep – Doubt
Kate Winslet – The Reader
Kate Beckinsale – Snow Angels

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