Making a "Best Of" movie list is very difficult because many studios release potentially Oscar worthy films very late in the year in hope that the Academy and its short attention span might remember only the most recent movie releases. I have dealt with this problem the same way as I did last year. First there's my Best Of 2006 list. It is a top ten list of movies that were released in 2006 that I actually got a chance to see in the calendar year. The second list is called Honorable Mention. This is a list of movies that were either not released in 2006, movies that were either leftovers from the previous year or movies that I got to see for the first time despite the movie's release year. This is followed by the Best Players category. This list comprises of actors, directors, animators or anyone else who I felt had a big impact on the world of movies in the past year. Finally there's the ever popular Worst Piece Of Junk Award. I think you can probably figure out what that's all about just from its title.
Another great year of movie-going but I have a question. What's the fascination with showing someone throwing up, going to the bathroom or even worse, masturbating on screen? Do we really need to see these things? Do any of these scenes ever really add anything to a film? Do directors really think that most people are interested in these scenes? Ninety-nine percent of these scenes don't accomplish anything as far as story or character development is concerned. Most of the time these scenes are ugly and uncalled for. Whatever happened to the days of seeing someone hold their stomach and run off screen?
My favorite movie of the year was Little Miss Sunshine. I am not a big fan of comedies; I very rarely will see one but this film was a treat to watch. Lots of subtle and not so subtle humor. Great performances from Toni Collette, Greg Kinnear and Steve Carell. Best line of the movie is when Olive is asked where her Grandfather is and she replies, "He's in the trunk of our car!" Great stuff.
So if you have some time, keep it in your pants, keep the bathroom door closed, have a look at my lists and remember, when you go to the movies, turn your cell phone off and SHUT THE HELL UP! Others may be trying to enjoy the film. Thank you.
1. Little Miss Sunshine - What more can I say? Lots of laughs in this offbeat comedy. Great performances by Greg Kinnear, Steve Carell and Toni Collette.
2. Blood Diamond - In a battle for the Oscar will it come down to Leo vs. Djimon?
3. Babel - An international Crash course in movie making.
4. Monster House - What a great surprise! Scary and very well written.
5. Curse Of The Golden Flower - Master storyteller Zhang Yimou does it again.
6. Flags Of Our Fathers - Can't wait to see Clint's Letters From Iwo Jima.
7. The Illusionist - Would you like what's behind door number one...
8. The Prestige - ...or what's behind door number two?
9. Pursuit Of Happyness - In a battle with Akeelah for feel good movie of the year.
10. Akeelah And The Bee - Fun. F-U-N. Fun.
1. Apocalypto - Mel's back and better than ever! Good thing there isn't any violence in his movies.
2. Joyeux Noel - 2005 - The Scottish, German and French soldiers on a battlefield during World War 1 decide to stop fighting and celebrate Christmas - together!
3. Shopgirl - 2005 - This movie was a total surprise! I liked it a lot. Good performances by Claire Danes and Steve Martin.
4. Duma - 2005 - One of the best and most overlooked family films in years! A boy and a Cheetah equals lots of fun.
5. Tsotsi - 2005 - Violent and heart breaking.
6. The Three Burials Of Malquiades Estrada - 2005 - Good modern day western starring and directed by Tommy Lee Jones. 7. The Queen - My Oscar has a first name it's H-E-L-E-N.
8. The Good Shepard - Nice history lesson.
9. The Departed - Gangs Of New York meets Casino meets Goodfellas meets South Boston.
10. The Lady In The Water - So shoot me! It was an adult fairy tale and I went along for the ride.
1. Djimon Hounsou - Best actor nod for Blood Diamond? Was better than Leo in every scene. That's saying a lot.
2. Greg Kinnear - One of the most highly underrated actors in the business.
3. Leo DiCaprio - Can he finally win an Oscar? He may be competing against himself though. Two great roles for him in 2006.
4. Matt Damon - Great in The Good Shepard and The Departed. Can't wait for the next Bourne film.
5. Steve Carell - If you don't watch The Office then what are you waiting for?
6. Clint Eastwood - He was the biggest actor in the world and he's now one of if not the biggest directors in the world.
7. Gong Li - She seems to be the next big thing from China. Excellent in Miami Vice, Memoirs of a Geisha and Curse Of The Golden Flower.
8. Will Smith - Great performance in The Pursuit Of Happyness.
9. Mel Gibson - Like him or hate him you have to admit, he's a great director.
10. Toni Collette - She was in about a million movies last year. Okay, four. But one was my favorite movie of 2006.
The Da Vinci Code - This movie was painful to sit through. All of the talk about how great the book is and how awesome Dan Brown is as a writer made me nervous for a big let down. Boy was it ever. Something must have been completely lost in translation. I know that sometimes you have to suspend belief when you watch a movie. With this one you needed to leave your brain at the concession stand.
5 - Excellent
4 - Good
3 - Fair
1 - Terrible
0 - What In God's Name Were They Thinking? - (No longer used. Created and used in 2001 only for A.I.)
Ancorman The Legend Of Ron Burgandy - 2004 - 2
Memoirs Of A Geisha - 2005 - 4
The Big Bounce - 2004 - 3
Grizzly Man - 2005 - 4
High Plains Drifter - 1973 - 4
King Kong - 2005 - 3
The Tune - 1992 - 2
Match Point - 2005 - 4
The Great Raid - 2005 - 3
Brokeback Mountain - 2005 - 4
Good Night and Good Luck - 2005 - 4
Yes - 2004 - 3
Lord Of War - 2005 - 4
40 Year Old Virgin - 2005 - 4
Broken Flowers - 2005 - 4
The Constant Gardner - 2005 - 4
The Matedor - 2005 - 4
I'm Not Scared Io non ho paura - 2003 - 4
Transamerica - 2005 - 4
El Bola - 2000 - 4
Murderball! - 2004 - 4
Mrs. Henderson Presents - 2005 - 4
Junebug - 2005 - 4
The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe - 2005 - 3
Pride And Prejudice - 2005 - 4
Enron The Smartest Guys In The Room - 2005 - 4
The Brothers Grimm - 2005 - 3
Before Sunset - 2004 - 4
The New World - 2005 - 3
Boogeyman - 3 - 2005
The Squid and the Whale - 3 - 2005
Me And You And Everyone We Know - 3 - 2005
Firewall - 2006 - 3
Born Into Brothels - 2004 - 4
Assault On Precinct 13 - 2005 - 3
Mysterious Skin - 2004 - 2
Modern Romance - 1981 - 3
The Jacket - 2005 - 3
Hide And Seek - 2005 - 3
16 Blocks - 2006 - 3
The Memory Of A Killer Zaak Alzheimer, De - 2003 - 3
Flight Plan - 2005 - 3
Domino - 2005 - 3
Elizabethtown - 2005 - 3
Dead Man - 1995 - 2
Thank You For Smoking - 2005 - 4
Transporter 2 - 2005 - 3
Prize Winner Of Defiance Ohio - 2005 - 4
My Summer Of Love - 2004 - 3
Inside Man - 2006 -4
Brothers Brødre - 2004 - 3
Cry Wolf - 2005 - 3
Poseidon - 2006 - 3
Proof - 2005 - 3
Cursed - 2005 - 2
Black Sunday Maschera del demonio, La - 1960 - 3
The Da Vinci Code - 2006 - 2
X-Men: The Last Stand - 2006 - 3
An Unfinished Life - 2005 - 3
Mission Impossible 3 - 2006 - 4
Wedding Crashers - 2005 - 3
The Ballad Of Jack And Rose - 2005 - 3
The Three Burials Of Malquiades Estrada - 2005 - 4
The Fog of War: Eleven Lessons from the Life of Robert S. McNamara - 2003 - 3
Cars - 2006 - 4
Waiting - 2005 - 2
Paradise Now - 2005 - 4
Pirates Of The Carribbean Dead Man's Chest - 2006 - 3
Long Strange Trip, or The Writer, the Naked Girl, and the Guy with a Hole in His Head: Ace In The Hole - 1999 - 3
11:14 - 2003 - 3
Monster House - 2006 - 5
Miami Vice - 2006 - 4
Lady In The Water - 2006 - 4
Cache - 2005 - 3
Night Listner - 2006 - 4
A Cock and Bull Story Tristram Shandry - 2005 - 2
End Of The Spear - 2005 - 4
Strictly Ballroom - 1992 - 3
Little Miss Sunshine - 2006 - 5
Duma - 2005 - 4
Two For The Money - 2005 - 3
Game 6 - 2005 - 4
Teaching Mrs. Tingle - 1999 - 3
Run Lola Run - 1998 - 3
The Illusionist - 2006 - 4
The Man Who Skied Down Everest - 1975 - 3
Sahara - 2005 - 3
Freedomland - 2006 - 3
Behind The Red Door - 2003 - 3
Fantastic Four - 2005 - 3
Das Boot - 1981 - 5
Tsotsi - 2005 - 4
Jarhead - 2005 - 3
The Departed - 2006 - 4
Akeelah And The Bee - 2006 - 4
The Dark Half - 1993 - 3
Flags Of Our Fathers - 2006 - 4
The Prestige - 2006 - 4
Shopgirl - 2005 - 4
Casino Royale - 2006 - 4
Deja Vu - 2006 - 3
The Ice Harvest - 2005 - 3
For Your Consideration - 2006 - 3
Seperate Lies - 2005 - 3
Notorious - 1946 - 4
Joe Kidd - 1972 - 3
The Sentinel - 2006 - 3
Blood Diamond - 2006 - 5
Mini's First Time - 2006 - 3
The Queen - 2006 - 4
An Inconvenient Truth - 2006 - 4
Babel - 2006 - 4
Pursuit Of Happyness - 2006 - 4
The Good Shepard - 2006 - 4
Apocalypto - 2006 - 4
Curse Of The Golden Flower Man cheng jin dai huang jin jia - 2006 - 5
Heavenly Creatures - 1994 - 3
Joyeux Noel - 2005 - 4