by Alex, Smile.ly Community Manager, 8/9/10
Fall is approaching, and that means the big Hollywood production studios are going to start cranking out their best, most Oscar-worthy films of the year. While the most hyped movies typically don’t get released until fall and the beginning of winter, this year has still had a relatively weak pool up to this point. Browsing Wikipedia’s comprehensive list of movies released in 2010, not many titles really popped out at me, which made it pretty easy to compile this breakdown of the five best of the year. Still, this doesn’t take away their credibility; I thoroughly enjoyed each of these films despite their relative lack of competition. Here they are, in order of release date:
1.) Shutter Island – This movie came out so many months ago, you might have even forgot it was actually released this year. Originally slated for an October 2009 release in time for an Oscar nomination, Shutter Island was pushed back to February 2010 for financial reasons. It will probably be forgotten by the time awards season comes around, but Martin Scorsese’s psychological action drama is a mind-bending adventure inside the creepy, maximum security insane asylum of Shutter Island. Leo DiCaprio stars as Teddy Daniels, a private investigator looking into the disappearance of prison inmate. What unravels is a dark and chilling mystery thrill ride that culminates in one of the coolest twist endings in any film I’ve seen in a while.
2.) Get Him to the Greek – This Judd Apatow-ian comedy doesn’t have much in common with Shutter Island. But it was still enjoyable in that it had me laughing all the way through to the end. If you saw the hilarious Forgetting Sarah Marshall, you’ll recognize lead actor Russell Brand as the promiscuous, sweet-talking, yet wildly inappropriate pop icon Aldous Snow. Funnyman Jonah Hill plays the role of a talent agent who is faced with the difficult task of escorting the unruly, drug addicted rock star from London to the Greek Theatre in Los Angeles, where he is scheduled to play a show. Get Him to the Greek is more or less this year’s The Hangover. It’s a very funny, yet painful journey of crazy, drunk youths getting themselves into more trouble than they can handle.
3.) Toy Story 3 – Currently the highest-grossing 2010 film specifically in the United States and Canada (Alice in Wonderland holds that distinction worldwide), the third installment of Pixar’s fan favorite animated series is universally loved by audiences and critics alike. Toy Story 3 was released a full eleven years after the second due to contract disputes with Disney. While most children these days may never have seen or even heard of the original Toy Story before seeing the third film of the trilogy, I’ve been an enormous fan of Woody and Buzz since 1995, a time when I could not profess my love for them on Facebook. Longtime fan or not, Toy Story 3 is a funny and engaging story about a crew of toys outgrown by their owner, college student Andy. They get sent to a daycare run by Lotso, a fluffy yet tyrannical teddy bear of a dictator. Their quest to find a welcoming home is fun, heartwarming, and as I’m sure you’ve heard by now, tear-inducing.
4.) The Kids Are All Right – This very well received indie dramedy focuses on family life, but is not your typical wholesome Brady Bunch tale. It centers on a lesbian couple, played by Julianne Moore and Annette Bening, and their two children who one day decide to seek out their biological father, a sperm donor played by a laid-back and somewhat sleazy Mark Ruffalo. His presence changes the way things are run in the family, and the mothers don’t exactly appreciate his interference. The film is a genuinely witty and interesting take on an unusual marriage and family dynamic, but it can still be relatable to anyone. It's a must-see for any audience.
5.) Inception – From Chris Nolan, the director of The Dark Knight andMemento, this box office smash is, like Shutter Island, yet another mind bender starring Leonardo DiCaprio. He takes on the role of Dom Cobb, a type of agent known as an “extractor.” Extraction involves entering peoples’ dreams and stealing information from their subconscious. "Inception," however, is new territory for him and requires entering a dream to insert an idea or a piece of information into the mind. Or something like that. The film is extremely ambitious and consequently, can be confusing. Yet it is an unprecedented action thriller in which a team of agents venture through numerous layers of a business leader’s dreams, attempting to plant the idea that he wants to dissolve his father’s monopoly, rather than take it over. It is a fun, wild and intricate experience that makes The Matrixlook like an episode of Blue’s Clues.
(images courtesy of Wikipedia.org)
What are your favorite movies you've seen this year?
Alex is a smile.ly Community Manager. He has always wanted to buy nachos with cheese at the movie theater but has refrained all his life because he hates when other people do it. Outside of the movies, he sees most things in 3-D without having to wear glasses.
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