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First Half Top 10

Posted by miguel on 2004-06-22 10:36:16
22 forum posts
10. Dawn of the Dead / In This World
TIE! Zombie Movie versus Social Quasi-Documentary.
DOTD Is on here for two reasons, all-universe ass kicker Ving Rhames and the brilliant opening 20 minutes, which shows you what a zombie hell apocalypse would have been like. The rest is not even close to being as good as the original, and I thought Sarah Polley was supposed to be a great actress?

In This World is a wonderful movie that is set up like a documentary. The film maker went to an Afghani refugee camp in Pakistan and interviewed many people. He then chose two actual refugees and made a movie about their attempt to make an overland journey from Pakistan to London England. What follows in an amazing journey that makes you realize just how random and fortunate it is that we live in Canada, and how badly people want to make a better life for themselves in the developed world. One of the actors did apply for refugee status once he arrived in London, but was refused.

9. Raising Victor Vargas
This indie gem is a coming of age movie and a romantic comedy but it doesn't subscribe to Miguel's law of Romantic Comedies: they all suck. It feels genuine, funny and it has great performances out of its teenage cast.

8. Lilya 4-Ever
A brilliant movie from Russia that is about as depressing as it can get, chronicling the downfall of Lylia into prostitution. Its shot on digital, giving it almost a documentary feel. This movie is an important watch because whether they are Russian, Thai or Hungarian the story of Lilya is the story of thousands of girls across the world who get tricked and forced into a nightmare existence. This isn't all doom and gloom however, because at the core of this movie is a genuinely sweet, human story about friendship and love.

7. In my Skin
What is it with the French and general fuckedupdom? First Irreversible and now this kuhrazy little flick, which reminds me a lot of Cronenberg's brand of weird. Do you know how you sometimes get a scab and you want to pick at it? This movie takes that impulse to the extreme. I will say this about it: you have never seen anything like In My Skin before. And that always gets kudos from me.

6. Dogville (was on my most anticipated list)
Oh Lars Von Trier, you wonderful, weird, curmudgeonly, mysoginistic beautiful man. In one little dessicated stage with few props and chalk outlines for houses, you take an incredible all star cast (James Caan, Nicole Kidman etc.) and effectively dissect the faults of Christian morality and American culture in one fell swoop. Simply incredible.

5. Spartan
Where did this movie come from? One one corner you have Swat, Bad Boys, any Vin Diesel Action flick, anything by Michael Bay, anything by the dude who made Independence Day and in the one lonely corner you have David Mamet's Spartan, where Val Kilmer has to rescue the president's daughter from a sex slave ring....or does he? Cool dialogue and a conspiracy laden plot add up to a thinking mans action movie that actually rewards the viewer that pays attention. It's like a breath of fresh air! Just put some effort into this and pay attention, become involved in the movie and you will get out so much more than a sore stomach from popcorn and mountain dew. (Don't drink Mountain Dew for God's sakes)

4. Ong Bak
(In best Lil'Jon voice) YEEEEAHHHHHHHH! I haven't been this happy with a martial arts movie since Jackie Chan's Drunken Master 2 came out! EVERYONE WATCH THIS NOW. All the incredible stunts and sweet moves are made even more impressive once you find out that there was no wirework or special effects involved, which explains the 5 year production time (injuries and such). Knees to the face, knees on fire to the face, knees to the face as people are crashing through a window, its all there. This movie has to be seen to be believed.

3. Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban
Yep, I put friggin Harry Potter on 3rd. The director of this movie is the same genius who did Y Tu Maman Tambien, one of my favorite movies EVUHR. This is the most complete Harry Potter yet, relying less on the "look at how cute their uniforms are!" factor and going for a darker, cooler feel to it. Thats not to say there aren't some nice moments either, the scene with Harry riding a griffin (manticore?) over the lake is probably one of the most beautiful moments I'll see on film this year.

2. Kill Bill 2 (On my most anticipated list)
Ahh hell no what's up dawg? What's up is the coolest movie of the year. David Carradine, Uma Therman in a Ninja oufit, snakes, old school martial arts training, beards, death touches and a kid who falls asleep to Shogun Assassin! If you haven't seen it you're basically a mullethead who wears Von Dutch hats and thinks the Red Hot Chilli Peppers are hardcore.

1. Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind (On my most anticipated list)
Take one ounce of Michael Gondry: music video director extraordinaire and sprinkle Charlie Kaufmans crazy-ass writing all over and what you get is Eternal Sunshine, which was already well reviewed by Nerhael so I will leave it alone.

But the year is only half over and many of my most anticipated movies aren't here yet!

Spider Man 2, Alien vs Predator, the Life Aquatic, Open Waters, Napoleon Dynamite, Dodgeball (FUCKIN EH!) are just a few of the movies I still have to watch. This should be a good second half!


  22 forum posts