When Film Reviews Bite

Like most people I’m a sucker for “best of” and “worst of” lists. But on my personal “worst” list are reviewers whose “Best Films of the Year” lists are made up of bleeping indy and foreign films I’ve never heard of, much less seen. Here’s one example, but this year we’ve had a bumper crop of them, seems to me.

I’m also seeing films on the “best” lists that got so-so reviews when they were released, like The Skeleton Key. Annoying.

I’d have a hard time coming up with a “Best Films of 2005,” because I’d have to list every new film I saw in theaters in 2005. But I didn’t see any films I didn’t like, so they can all go on the list —

    1. Good Night and Good Luck — the best.
    2. Batman Begins — dark and gritty, like a superhero movie should be
    3. A History of Violence — I hated the ending. I loved the ending.

[Update: I forgot Syriana! And it’s really good! Put it at number 4 and bump everything else down one. ]

    4. Madagascar — The New York City segments were priceless.
    5. Kingdom of Heaven — Would have been better if they hadn’t killed off Liam Neeson so fast, but still good.

[Update: I forgot Walk the Line. If Kingdom of Heaven is now #6, then Walk the Line is #7 and SW is #8

    6. Star Wars: Revenge of the SithAlmost redeemed the dreaded episodes I and II.
    7. The Legend of Zorro — I’m a sucker for swashbucklers.
    8. Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire — entertaining, even though I already knew how it ended
    9. King Kong — ditto. Some scenes went a little long, though.
    10. Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy — The book was better, but the film was still pretty good.

In addition to these I saw Aliens of the Deep in 3D, which was nice. I also saw Constantine on TV. Have forgotten it already.

There are no doubt lots of really good films I didn’t see, which is why they are not on this list. But at least these are all red blooded, all-American major theatrical releases, by gawd. None o’ that smartypants indy or foreign stuff!

6 thoughts on “When Film Reviews Bite

  1. I don’t mind smartypants indy or foreign stuff, but my favorite movie this year is pretty lowbrow–Serenity. I hear that, if you’re not verging on cultism regarding the Firefly series, Serenity didn’t have much kick. But, for those of us who went through withdrawal when the series ended, Serenity was a great fix.

  2. Raenelle, I think Joss Whedon is a teevee writing/directing god, but I never really “got” Firefly, the series. Having said that, I think Serenity was the last movie I saw in a theater, and I loved it.

    Some great recommendations on maha’s list, but I’ll probably end up seeing most of them on DVD. I’m especially curious to see how Hitchhiker’s Guide compares to the wacko BBC version from the 1980s.

  3. Am I the only person on the planet that actually LIKED Star Wars 1 and 2, and Matrix 2 and 3?

    Star Wars 3 was better than 1 & 2, granted, and Matrix 1 was better than 2 & 3, also granted, but still….

    Jar-Jar was cool. I don’t care what any of the rest of you philistines thinks.


  4. Ian, I’m with you, except that Jar-Jar was annoying (but no more than Jack Black in King Kong). But I go for escapism more than “production values.” Having said that, I have to say that Good Luck was absolutely phenomenal. I was just blown away…

Comments are closed.