Tuesday, January 02, 2007

2006: The Year in Movies

I didn't get out to a lot of movies in 2006, so I'm not sure if it's even fair to attempt a "top ten" list of movies for the year. Especially when, almost by default, it would have to include Snakes on a Plane. For every good (or, considering the general quality of films I managed to see, "not-awful") movie I saw, there were probably three great ones that I missed.

So here are all the movies released in 2006 that I watched, whether in the theater or on DVD. I'm lumping them all in broad categories, rather than a definitive top ten. The list, as always, is compiled from this site, which Montykins helpfully reminds me exists every year via his year-end movies post.

Best Movie Of The Year (Tie)

The Departed
Stranger Than Fiction
Two brilliant movies, each in very different ways, but both sharing a fantastic cast, a tremendous script, genuine surprises, and the ability to renew my love and wonder for the movies. Based purely on number of people whose brains get blown out, The Departed gets the edge. Based on quantity and quality of scenes featuring milk and cookies, it's Stranger Than Fiction all the way.

Other Movie With Leonardo DiCaprio That I Loved

Blood Diamond
Surprisingly, even grimmer and bloodier than The Departed. Which takes some doing. A year with two movies featuring DiCaprio, whom I generally don't care for, in which I thought he was superlative. Hard to believe!

Movies I'm Not Ashamed To Say I Saw And Loved

Thank You for Smoking
American Dreamz
Tied for sharpest, funniest social and political satires of the year that just about nobody saw. Perfect double feature for your next movie night.

The Descent
Best horror film of the year.

An Inconvenient Truth
Best horror film of the year: reality category.

Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby
Biggest laughs of the year.

Clerks II
Best movie featuring a donkey show of the year.

Casino Royale
Not just one of the best Bond flicks -- great entertainment, period.

A Prairie Home Companion
Wonderful final film from one of the best directors ever.

Movies I'm A Little Ashamed To Admit I Enjoyed, Based Mainly On Their Creative Methods Of Killing People

Final Destination 3
Running Scared
Snakes on a Plane

Movie I'm Really Ashamed To Admit I Enjoyed

The Pink Panther
I know! Totally inessential remake. But I laughed a lot more than I would've expected. So sue me.

Movies I'm Ashamed To Admit I Even Saw

Date Movie
Man of the Year
My Super Ex-Girlfriend
Nacho Libre
Scary Movie 4
School for Scoundrels
The Sentinel
You, Me and Dupree

Movies I Liked, But Which Really Should've Been Better

Inside Man
Mostly good, but felt like somebody cut out the script pages which made it all make sense.

Mission: Impossible III
Hoffman was great, but could've used a lot less real-world Tom Cruise craziness.

Superman Returns
So entertaining in parts, but so many missteps and missed opportunities.

X-Men: The Last Stand
I might've said it would've been a lot better if Bryan Singer had stuck around as director, but then I saw the movie he left to do instead (see above).

Movie I Fell Asleep During, But Which Was Actually Not All That Bad When I Gave It A Second Chance On DVD

Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest
Still bloated beyond all reason, and nearly beyond all possibility of enjoyment. But it had its moments. (Before the moments got stretched out into interminable, senses-assaulting bores.)

Bizarre Foreign Genre Flicks I Got A Kick Out Of

District B13
Awesome French near-future-dystopia/parkour-action movie.

Night Watch
Totally weird Russian vampire movie, which I'm pretty sure didn't make a lick of sense. Nice visuals, though.

A Good Year For Animation

What can't Pixar do?

Over The Hedge
So entertaining, I didn't mind watching it repeatedly with my three-year-old niece.

Movies I Didn't Even Bother To Finish

Basic Instinct 2
Two movies not even gratuitous nudity could save. Not even with the extra-gratuitous nudity on the DVDs! I will say this: what I saw of Basic Instinct 2 was much funnier than what I saw of Beerfest.

Ice Age: The Meltdown
A good year for animation? Not if this was all you saw. Not that the first one was all that great, but every second of this sequel without Skrat onscreen was awful.

V For Vendetta
That's right! You all loved it, but it bored the crap out of me. I might give it a second chance some day, but really, life is only so long.

Biggest Disappointment

Strangers With Candy
I've been waiting for this movie forever, it seems like. I loved the TV series so much, and I wanted so much to love the movie, too. But it was almost unwatchable. I don't think I laughed once. Nothing worked. It should have -- you can see glimmers of the cleverness, absurdity, crudeness, and reveling in pure meanness that were a part of the series. But none of it translated to this movie. Blame the half-assed script coupled with inept editing and, worst of all, the shitty direction which undermined any attempt at comedy. What a letdown.

Wow, that's a lot more movies than I would've guessed. Too bad so many of them stunk. Maybe in 2007 I can catch up with all the good stuff I should've seen in 2006.

Weblog Commenting and Trackback by HaloScan.com