Favorite flicks of ’10

My moviegoing comes and goes, and this year it mostly went: I saw a total of 16 new movies. (Plus some oldies, but those don’t count.) Below are my 10 favorites, roughly in descending order of preference:

“Cairo Time,” “Toy Story 3,” “Mademoiselle Chambon,” “The Kids Are All Right,” “Inception,” “Catfish,” “127 Hours,” “The Social Network,” “Cyrus” and “The Secret in Their Eyes.”

The other six: “True Grit,” “Avatar: Special Edition,” “Crazy Heart,” “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part 1,” “The Art of the Steal” and No. 16 out of 16, the closest thing to a stinker on the list, “Iron Man 2.”

One or two of these may technically have come out in 2009, but I saw them in 2010, as did almost everyone else. I only saw “The Social Network” on New Year’s Eve, solely to sneak it onto my 2010 list, and undoubtedly numerous other movies I didn’t see were as good as anything on this list.

What were your favorites?

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  • shirley wofford

    Hi David,

    Sixteen movies a year, for a working man like you, is pretty good. Since I retired, I have been making up for all the time I did not have to see movies, when I was employed. The $4.50 Wednesday, senior deal, at the Laemmle, probably facilitates my attendance at more movies than I would otherwise see.

    My favorite films of 2010 were “Mao’s Last Dancer” and “The King’s Speech.”

    Other films I liked, in no particular order of preference, were: “The Social Network”; “Cyrus”; “Crazy Heart”; “Morning Glory”; “Cairo Time”; “Wall Street–Money Never Sleeps”; “Secretariat”; “It’s Kind of a Funny Story”; “The Town”; “Hereafter” and “Death at a Funeral” (the American version with Chris Rock. There were only two us us in the theater, and we weren’t together. The movie was hilarious).

    I was lukewarm on “Eat, Pray, Love”; “Fair Game”; “The Kids are Alright”; and “You will Meet a Tall Dark Stranger.”

    Some good documentaries I saw were “This is It” (Michael Jackson’s last rehearsals. The film was, for me, a pleasant surprise); “A Piece of Work” (Joan Rivers); and “Inside Job” (anyone who wants to know the truth about the economic collapse should see; those who don’t want to face the fact that they have been blaming the wrong people will avoid it).

    Sadly, my “Stinkeroos” featured some of my favorite players: “Greenburg” (Ben Stiller); “The American” (George Clooney–”sob”).

    A friend, who knew I love RDJ, warned me not to see “Due Date”, and you evidently saved me from “Iron Man 2″, which I had missed.

    I started out 2011 by viewing “The Fighter”, which actually came out in 2010. I hate violence. Surprise–it was really good, and I won’t be shocked if there are about four Oscar noms.

    [I knew you'd be commenting on this entry, Shirley! I'm sure I'll see "The King's Speech" very soon, and perhaps I'll see "The Fighter" as well, especially after your ringing endorsement. Oh, and thanks for saying 16 movies wasn't so shabby. It would've been 13 but in the last week of 2010 I saw three movies. -- DA]

  • Ted

    I am sure there is more; but I saw TRON 3D very progressive movie four stars all the way.

  • Doug Evans

    It’s interesting to me that True Grit only makes it halfway down your list… I saw it this past Monday and really enjoyed it. But I didn’t see any of the films that are on the top half of your list, except for Toy Story, so I suppose I may have put True Grit in the same place if I’d had the others to compare it to.

    Oh, upon double-checking your list: I did see Inception and was left cold… there was an hour-long Doctor Who episode aired just a few weeks prior that (in my opinion) tackled the exact same issues (dreams vs. reality!) in a much more engaging and entertaining way.

    I sort of had the same reaction to Inception that I did to Avatar… as a sci-fi geek, I feel like I’ve seen the same story (dream vs. reality; supposedly-primitive alien race has lessons to teach greedy humans) played out many times before, and often in a much more interesting way. But that’s just me! Oh, and Peter Sagal, of NPR’s Wait Wait Don’t Tell Me. He said the same thing. But I would have thought of it anyway!

    I’m with Shirley: King’s Speech = good movie!

    And I’ll have to respectfully disagree with Ted on Tron: the one-sentence review I’ve been giving friends is, “They’ve had twenty-eight years to fix the only thing wrong with the first movie — the story — and they still couldn’t do it.”

    [Take the "descending order" Top 16 with a grain of salt. It's awfully hard to compare movies seen in some cases 11 months apart and made in totally different styles. My first draft had "Crazy Heart" around No. 4; this draft lay dormant a couple of weeks, during which I saw "True Grit," "Social Network" and "127 Hours." I tried to go off my memory of what was onscreen (how much of a movie did I recall, months later?) and my memory of my impression at the time. I had to conclude that while I liked "Crazy Heart," it wasn't as good as "Tender Mercies," and that I liked "True Grit" more. It's not a bad year when even movies you're fond of are edged out of your Top 10. -- DA]

  • judi

    Hi David! Since you love the movies and can write very well, have you ever thought of writing your own screenplay? Maybe a sci-fi/western/fantasy/comedy romp? I believe they pay screenwriters just a bit better than columnists, if you’re into the money thing. Something to think about…

    [I like your idea of a sci-fi/western/fantasy/comedy romp, especially if you work in some rom with the com. Honestly, though, I'd rather leave screenwriting to the would-be professionals: the folks who spend all day at coffeehouses with their laptop. -- DA]