10. Contagion/The Descendants
Surprise! #10 is a tie, and it isn’t the only tie on my list, I’m sure as my years as a movie critic go on I will be able to make the hard decisions but for now I’ll live with a tie or two on my list. Contagion is smart, scary, tense and extremely well acted, take a disaster movie and add Oscar caliber writing, directing and acting to it. Contagion has more style than any movie ever made by Roland Emmerich (2012 director).
The Descendants is beautiful and doesn’t shy away from the truth, it’s emotional but very often funny. George Clooney and Shailene Woodley give amazing performances, the movie is very heartwarming.
One of the best moments that comes with critiquing movies is when a movie blows you away, Warrior blew me away, I was never expecting it to make it on this list, I wasn’t even planning on seeing it until Nick Nolte was nominated for a supporting actor Oscar. Warrior is incredibly full of heart, more heart then you could ever imagine in a fighting movie. Tom Hardy and Nick Nolte are incredible in Warrior, their acting astounded me. Warrior goes from one emotionally gripping scene to a wonderfully captured fighting scene with such ease and grace. Warrior is a winner.
8. The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo
It’s like James Bond but a little darker, but Bond lets the girl do a few more stunts this time. The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo is brutal, disturbing, intense and Tense, it’s essentially a violent mystery movie. David Fincher, probably my favorite director did such a superb job. Rooney Mara literally transformed herself for the title role, I have seen her in other movies but didn’t know until afterwards who she was.
Another tie! So what I put the comedies together, I couldn’t decide which was better!
Bridesmaids exceeded all of my expectations, when you look at the poster/trailer/title you think “Chick Flick”, but it’s not really a chick flick. Bridesmaids is downright hilarious, I was laughing out loud. Bridesmaids may have it’s occasional over the top hilarious moments, but what shocked me was how real it felt. Kristen Wiig’s character felt real and authentic, and you could relate to her problems, every line out of these women’s mouths were just pure comic genius. I’m glad the academy recognized Wiig for her writing and Melissa McCarthy who obviously stole the show on many occasions.
50/50 takes the award for most heartfelt comedy of the year, director Jonathan Levine from comedy to bittersweet moments with such easy. Rising star Joseph Gordon-Levitt does a wonderful job, the story feels authentic and real, and even though it might make you tear up you’ll leave the theatre feeling a little bit better about life.
6. The Artist
When I first heard about The Artist I was confused and a little angry that some stupid person would even make another silent film, I couldn’t help but think “Why?”. Even though I was confused, I still saw The Artist and I couldn’t believe how in love I was with it. The Artist IS a silent film, but it defies all logic and seeps its way into your heart. The Artist is full of life and happiness, I attribute a lot of that to Jean Dujardin who absolutely breathes life into this movie with his charm, and his co-star Berenice Bejo does a wonderful job as well.
5. Martha Marcy May Marlene/Take Shelter
This is the last tie I promise! Two indie films that absolutely blew me away
Take Shelter is driven by two great performances by Michael Shannon and Jessica Chastain. The story is tense and scary, it sneaks up on you slowly, each minute that passes you become more and more involved drawn in, your tied to the ending good or bad.
Martha Marcy May Marlene is a story about a girl who escapes a cult and lives with her sister. Elizabeth Olsen stars as Martha Marcy May Marlene in her debut role that is Oscar worthy, The story is haunting and terrifying as Martha tries to settle into her life but is haunted by her old one.
Ah Drive! The movie the Oscars forgot, I still shake my head. Drive stars possibly the biggest name of 2011, and was one of the most unforgettable movies 2011 had to offer. It’s different, it’s violent but it’s exciting and captivating and intriguing. Drive is the best action film of 2011, driven by a great cast.
3. The Help
While it may boast a few cliches and stereotypes The Help rises to the #3 spot on my list due to the fine story and top notch acting. The Help boasts one of the best ensemble casts this year, every actress involved deserves a round of applause and a trophy of some sort. Viola Davis is the front runner of the movie, and her acting is absolutely amazing, but she gives her wonderful co-stars room to shine also like Octavia Spencer, Emma Stone, Jessica Chastain, Bryce Dallas Howard and Allison Janney.
2. The Muppets
Did I lose you? I hope not. The Muppets is, in my opinion, the second best movie of 2011. Eleven years since The Muppets have graced the big screen and thanks to the help of Jason Segel, The Muppets are back and a huge success. The Muppet’s is funny, heartfelt and over joyous with happiness that doesn’t feel forced, if you leave unhappy than there is something incredibly wrong with you.
So Have you guessed the #1 movie?
Are you Ready?
The Number 1 Movie of 2011 is….
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2
Yes, in 2011 it all ended in a spectacular, amazing and magical finish. I knew what to expect, ten years of seeing every Harry Potter in theatres, and at 21 years old I think I was more excited this time than the first time. This Harry Potter was extremely well paced, and wonderfully acted especially from Alan Rickman. The finale was fitting and amazing, and I am extremely satisfied with a movie that is being called “The end of an era”.
The Movies That almost made it on this list:
Rise of the Planet of the Apes (was just beat out by Contagion)
X-Men: First Class, Super 8, The Tree Of Life, Mission Impossible 4, Attack The Block, Hugo, Hanna, We Bought a Zoo, and Our Idiot Brother.
Thanks for reading 🙂