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#5 – Speed Racer
#6 – Iron Man
#7 – Eagle Eye
#8 – Then She Found Me
#9 – Kit Kittredge: An American Girl
#10 – Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day
Tagline: A Fairytale Like No Other, What Makes us Different Makes us Beautiful
Written by: Leslie Caveny
Directed by: Mark Palansky
Starring: Christina Ricci, James McAvoy, Catherine O’Hara, Reese Witherspoon, Peter Dinklage, Simon Woods
Music by: Joby Talbot
Synopsis: A wealthy family is horrified when their daughter is born with a pig nose due to an ancient family curse. In order to break the curse the girl, Penelope, must find someone who accepts and loves her for exactly who she is.
Why this movie made my top ten:
This movie feels like a sibling to the lovely show “Pushing Daisies.” The characters are vivid, the sets, while easily taken from the real world, seem fantastical and brighter than what you would find in reality. Penelope is a heroine you can really get behind, she’s adorable, precocious, and quirky. She is a perfect blend between princess and sprightly dairymaid – variations of which populate nearly every fairy tale in existence.
The other characters surrounding her make this movie even easier to love. Her mother is exquisitely overdramatic – fretting over her daughter and pushing her to do things she doesn’t want. Simon Dinklage, as we’ve come to expect, shines as a great reporter who is obsessed with finding out the truth behind Penelope’s reclusiveness. And of course, James McAvoy oozes pure hotness all over the screen, with just enough of a touch of rascal to even it out. Also, Burn Gorman – an actor from one of my favorite television shows (Torchwood) makes an appearance as Dinklage’s fellow reporter; while sporting an American accent that really threw me for a loop.
This story, while a bit predictable, still manages to entertain you. It’s fairly clean, and cute, and manages to balance modern with ancient fairytale feelings. This is one I definitely would like to add to my personal collection (and ask my husband, that doesn’t happen often).
Favorite scene: Most of the scenes with Dinklage.
#4 – The Dark Knight
#5 – Hellboy II: The Golden Army
#6 – Cloverfield
#7 – Forgetting Sarah Marshall
#8 – Eagle Eye
#9 – Kung Fu Panda
#10 – The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian
Tagline: Welcome To A World Without Rules
Directed by: Christopher Nolan
Written by: Christopher and Jonathan Nolan, Story By David Goyer
Starring: Christian Bale, Michael Caine, Heath Ledger, Gary Oldman, Aaron Eckhart, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Morgan Freeman
Music by: Hans Zimmer, James Newton Howard
Release date: July 18th, 2008
Synopsis: Come on. You’ve seen this movie. It’s the second biggest movie of all time – I don’t think I need to go over this again. But for those really wondering… It’s the darkest and most cynical excuse for a “super-hero” film that has ever been made. Batman and the Joker battle for the fate of Gotham – happy feelings and joy lose.
Why this movie made my top ten:
Simply put, it’s a fantastically made “super hero” film that deals with themes and ideas that are usually reserved for Oscar bait films. It’s epic, shocking, and features performances that are unparalleled. Heath Ledger has, understandably, garnered most of the praise, but everyone else is equally fantastic.
From the opening scene to the moving (if manipulative) ending, we’re introduced to an epic crime story. And, that might be the film’s greatest trick – it could easily have worked just as well if it wasn’t a comic book story. The struggle between the Joker and Batman is one that is gripping and moving.
Also, it’s very, very pretty.
Yes, I disagree with almost everything this film has to say – but that doesn’t mean it isn’t a wonderful, exciting, and great work of art. It also doesn’t mean that I don’t love it – because I do. Let’s hope, though, that the next one takes a turn for the brighter.
Favorite scene: The opening bank robbery – a perfect introduction to the crazy force of chaos that is the Joker.