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Dusty B

2011 Kiss Off

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Another year gone which means it's time once again for countless top lists. Of course, the rest of the world did all this shit like a week ago but everyday life here has been sapping up my time lately. Still, I can't hold off from doing one of these. I love doing year-end wrap up stuff. It's fun to reflect back on what I watched lately, as well as creating an archival post I can look back upon in the future to see what I was watching at the time. For shits and giggles, here's my post from last year.

This was the first year my OCD was successful enough to keep a full list of everything I watched this year. Or, at least most of them, I'm hoping. I'm betting there's a straggler or two that slipped by me by the time I was able to type it down.

The final tallies are:
Total films watched: 540
First time viewings: 460
Revisits of previously seen films: 80
The full list of films seen can be seen here.

This year, by finally taking advantage of Redbox and Netflix for the first time, I was able to stay much more current with this year's releases than I usually do. I was able to watch 37 movies from 2011 this year, much higher than the 16 2010 films I had seen at this point last year. Overall, 2011 was a fairly average year for the most part. Even my favorite movie of the year would only rank somewhere in the middle of its director's catalog.

Ranking of all 2011 films:
1. Midnight in Paris
2. X-Men First Class
3. Insidious
4. Shaolin
5. Rango
6. Kung Fu Panda 2
7. Page One: Inside the New York Times
8. Attack the Block
9. Final Destination 5
10. The Change-Up
11. Thor
12. Take Me Home Tonight
13. True Legend
14. Blitz
15. Crazy Stupid Love
16. Scream 4
17. Bridesmaids
18. William S. Burroughs: A Man Within
19. Horrible Bosses
20. Paul
21. Green Lantern
22. Gnomeo and Juliet
23. Transformers: Dark of the Moon
24. Captain America
25. Your Highness
26. Conan O'Brien: Can't Stop
27. Fast Five
28. Skew
29. Tree of Life
30. Chillerama
31. Fright Night
32. Battle: Los Angeles
33. Super 8
34. Cars 2
35. Paranormal Activity 3
36. Dylan Dog: Dead of Night
37. Hobo With a Shotgun


Now, most people while making their lists primarily comment on the films that were released in the last year. I like to look back at all the films I've seen, regardless of year. There's over a century of film to dive into from all over the world and I think discovering new favorites out of older movies are more exciting than the hot new releases. Here's the best ones I caught up with this last year:

Top 25 best movies seen in the last year:
1. Once Upon A Time in the West (1968)
2. Make Way for Tomorrow (1937)
3. The Wild Bunch (1969)
4. In the Loop (2009)
5. Winter's Bone (2009)
6. Network (1976)
7. The Trip (2010)
8. Velvet Goldmine (1998)
9. After the Fox (1966)
10. Stardust Memories (1980)
11. Best Worst Movie (2009)
12. Do the Right Thing (1989)
13. Suicide Club (2002)
14. Withnail and I (1987)
15. The Prestige (2006)
16. Princess (2006)
17. Kabluey (2007)
18. Rope (1948)
19. Children of Men (2006)
20. Give 'Em Hell Malone (2009)
21. Dear Zachary (2008)
22. Santa Sangre (1989)
23. Dream Home (2010)
24. Marwencol (2010)
25. Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With Me (1992)

And with the good, must come the bad:

Top 10 worst films watched this year:
1. 2001 Maniacs: Field of Screams (2010)
2. Madness (2010)
3. Resident Evil: Afterlife (2010)
4. Deuce Bigalow: European Gigolo (2005)
5. Alice in Wonderland (2010)
6. Savage County (2010)
7. Red Hook (2009)
8. Paranoid Park (2007)
9. The Last Airbender (2010)
10. Hatchet 2 (2010)

And now for some very random awards:

Best Trailer:
Between the visuals, the music, and the creatures, so much of this movie reminds me of Ridley Scott's Legend and other fantasies I loved growing up. Other than the inclusion of Cardboard Stewart, this trailer has me hook, line, and sinker.


Best Poster:
It takes talent to create a stark, simple design and have it deliver such an impact. I'd call this one Criterion-worthy.


How Does He Keep Getting Work?
Ashton Kutcher. Two years in a row! Whooo!

How Does She Keep Getting Work?
Jessica Alba

Most Overrated:
Super 8. Many people worship the film but I found it an unbalanced disappointment. When the movie focuses on just the children and their lives, it's wonderful. Any time the monster aspects are shoved into whatever nook and cranny they find, it goes to hell. The level of unearned schmaltz it tries to feed you doesn't sit well with me either. Coming even from horror freak, I say if they had ditched the monster altogether and made a slice of life tale, it could have been one of the best of the year.

Most Depressing, Soul Shredding Film:
Dear Zachary: A Letter to a Son About His Father. This is a Cannibal Holocaust for those that have children. One of the saddest things I've ever sat through.

Most Disgusting:
Chillerama. Toilets and feces are about the most disgusting things in the world to me and the three minutes of Deathication within the film almost had me puke.

Most Under-appreciated:
The Change-Up. This year R-rated comedies hit it big, but they were still stuck dealing with adolescent themes of "I'm not the best friend anymore" or "My boss is a dick", but the one film that truly managed to balance low-brow humor with adult topics was a box office bust. The film deals with the choice of freedom over raising a family, maintaining a healthy marriage, realistic career issues, friendship, and growing up; all while having a baby shit in someone's mouth. The balance actually works amazingly well and older viewers will probably connect with many of the issues here. Not to mention, Jason Bateman gives the best comedic performance of the whole year.

Most WTF?:
Postal (2007). Deliriously crazy.

Funniest Moment:
The Change-Up- When Ryan Reynolds has the kids in the kitchen. I couldn't breathe for minutes.

Runner up:
Coopers' Christmas- When the dad, drunk out of his mind, stumbles into the kitchen and tears apart Christmas dinner.

Surprisingly Wasn't Completely Horrible:
Gnomeo and Juliet

Best Score:
I don't know. Take your pick: droning ambiance or generic electro beats. Nothing really stood out other than scores that reused cues from previous installments, like Transformers or Kung Fu Panda.

Best Song Still Stuck in My Head After Seeing the Movie:
From Pig Hunt:


Top Movies My Son Watched Until My Eyes Bled:
1. Toy Story 1 and 3. The disc for part two skips.
2. Mater's Tall Tales
3. Garfield
4. Monsters, Inc.
5. Up

I think that's all I have. Thank you for reading and here's to a cinematic 2012!

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Updated 01-13-2012 at 12:36 PM by Dusty B

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Comments

  1. crikan's Avatar
    One of the best 2011 list I've read. Good stuff

    I really enjoyed ONCE UPON A TIME IN THE WEST as well. Kinda got obsessive about it. I bought a few soundtracks and started looking for MAN WITH THE HARMONICA remixes. I even popped it back in a few times just to watch the opening.

    I've only seen 3 of your "Top 25 best movies seen in the last year".
  2. GregMO ROberts's Avatar
    Great blog entry. That's a lot of films. I feel as if every waking moment of mine is spent watching movies and you beat my total for 2011.

    Don't agree with all your list entries (Final Destination 5 - really?), but good to see you had the balls to put Woody Allens flick number 1. It was a great film that was his best in years.
  3. Dusty B's Avatar
    Thanks.

    The opening scene of Once Upon a Time... was one of the greatest things I've seen. Every little touch and beat was just perfect. Amazing.

    Yeah, I would probably rank FD5 lower if I get to rewatch it. I think it's the combination of me being a sucker for the series and the bonus points I give it for being able to bounce back from the abysmal skidmark that the fourth one was. I do think the climax of this one was pretty uneventful, other than the very last twist, so I'd probably move it around because of that if I were to re-rank things.