A good mixture of movies during 2008 from gentle humour to dark comedy, from romance to action spectaculars. It wasn’t too difficult to narrow down to 10 but there were still some very good films that didn’t make it into my list.
10. Then She Found Me
I was taken to this as a birthday treat and I really didn’t know what to expect. I have always loved Helen Hunt and she doesn’t disappoint in a story of a mid-life crisis which is all about relationships and trust. Helen also directed. Special kudos to Colin Firth and Bette Midler.
This was such a cute comedy about teen pregnancy. Ellen Page and Michael Cera are delightful in their own ways and there is no preachiness.
8. The Dark Knight
Dark indeed. Everyone has been talking about Heath Ledger as the Joker and rightfully so. His is an excellent performance and really holds the film together. Christian Bale is a great Batman but he is relegated to second fiddle. Best to see on a big screen. It is a little long and gets a bit off track with the Two Face sub-plot but overall, a great addition to the Batman films.
7. I Am Legend
A remake of a remake but it works because it does something different with the last man on earth scenario. Will Smith shows that he can really act and really gets across the loneliness and despair of the character as well as his determination.
6. Burn After Reading
A very dark comedy with an excellent cast not normally known for comedy. Look out for George Clooney’s “special” chair and John Malkovich’s dark side. JK Simmons is hilarious in his short scenes.
5. In Bruges
Another dark comedy about assassins hiding out in Bruges. It does get a bit violent at times (I was good at knowing when to close my eyes) but very funny and oddly touching at times. A great cast and a special mention to Colin Farrell who I think is sometimes under-rated as an actor.
4. Iron Man
Robert Downey Jr is excellent as Tony Stark/Iron Man. The movie is a good blend of action and humour, as well as having some important messages.
I saw this at a gay film festival and just really, really liked it. A film about family, obligations and living your dreams. It’s just nice to see a gay movie with drama and humour but not over-the-top angst or doom and gloom. Oh, and I fell in love with Zach played by Trevor Wright. 😉
2. The Day The Earth Stood Still
The original 1951 movie is my favourite science fiction movie of all time so this remake with Keanu Reeves had big shoes to fill. They did a great job at updating the story but keeping the essence of the original. Kathy Bates is great even if you want to slap her character for most of the movie. And yes, they did Gort justice.
1. Lars And The Real Girl
I was taking a chance when I went to see this film. A story about a guy with a mental illness falling in love with a life size doll could have been so tacky but it really wasn’t. It was a beautiful, heart warming story with some lovely touches of humour. I loved how the community got behind and supported Lars and the ending was very satisfying. I left the cinema with a smile on my face.