Thursday, December 14, 2006

The Best Movies of 2006!

Well I promised these would come soon so here they are, my best of 2006. I couldn't rank them numerically so I decided to hand out awards, which I have dubbed "The Tiddies" (Pronounced Tid - dee's), from my last name Tidmore, So without further ado, the award goes to....

Best Romance of the Year
The Holiday
This movie is the Best Romance for one reason and surprisingly it's not the beautiful Kate Winslet or Cameron Diaz, heck it's not even Jack Black, who shows he really can act, or Jude Law. No the best part of this movie is a 91 year old man named Eli Wallach. I'm not saying the rest of the movie isn't good, because it is, but Mr. Wallach pushes it over the top.

Best B Movie of the Year
I saw this movie twice this year in the theater and once on DVD. Slither is a throw back to the b horror movies on the 80s, its funny, with a good amount of jolts and gallons of over-the-top gore. James Gunn's directorial debut is more fun than it has any right to be, and Nathan Fillion is a big part of that. I met both Fillion and Gunn at the screening I went to in October and they were two very nice guys which makes watching this movie all the better.

Best Guilty Pleasure
Snakes on a Plane
What more can I saw about this movie that the Title doesn't say for me? There's Snakes and they are on a Plane.

Wildest Ride of the Year (Tie)
Crank & Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest
This one is a tie, one is a 90 min non-stop thrill a minute ride the other a 2.5 hour Pirate Sequel with thrills on the high seas. Crank is on this list because it knows exactly what it is and doesn't try to be anything else, Crank is one impossible stunt after another, which is no surprise because the directors are to former stunt men, but there are some very cool things they do with various shots and effects. Pirates on the other hand, while not as good as the first movie, is a lot of fun, yes the villains are weird and not nearly as good as the cursed pirates of the first film, but the fights and action sequences made for a bloody good time, especially the Water Wheel fight sequence.

Best Animated Movie of the Year
Monster House
I can't say I saw every animated movie that came out this year, but of the ones I did see this was my favorite. Monster House was by animating actors who had worn motion capture suits. Then end result is a great, if slightly scary (especially for the younger crowd) movie which is both thrilling and funny.

Best “disappointment” of the Year
Lady in the Water
This movie was critically panned (I'm sure the fact that one character is both a movie critic and a jerk didn't help) and didn't seem to get much love from the movie going public either, but I loved it. I have to think that this is another case of bad marketing. Once again a studio chose to market a Shyamalan movie as a horror flick and once again it disappointed that target audience. I believe if they had chosen to market it as the weird Fairy Tale that it was it would have had a more positive reaction and as such the better word of mouth might have helped the boxoffice.

Most Painful to Watch
Borat was painful to watch in several different ways. First it was painful to see how unintelligent people in America can be, and I'm sure Baron Cohen encountered quite a few people that didn't make fools of themselves, but that doesn't make for a good movie. As a social commentary it is amazing, making you feel in turns ashamed and angry at how ignorant people can be. This movie was also painful to watch because there are several cringe inducing scenes that you want to turn away from, but just can't force yourself to do so. But the main reason this movie was painful was because it literally hurt to watch. I laughed so hard in several scenes that I ha a hard time breathing, and one scene had me laughing so hard I was literally choking. Simple put it was awful, disgusting, and hilarious.

Funniest Movie of the Year
Little Miss Sunshine
This one is a gem. The only thing bad I can say about this movie is the language. But if you can get past that you'll find a Hilariously heartwarming film. One minute it will have you crying with laughter the next it will have you crying because it's touched you. Everyone in this cast is phenomenal, but the two best are probably Abigail Breslin and Alan Arkin, whose chemistry as grandchild and grandfather is amazing.

Best Movie Going Experience of the Year
Superman Returns at Grauman’s Theater Opening Night
Alright, everyone knows I loved this movie, it was Superman for cry out loud, but the experience of standing in line for several hours on opening night at the Grauman's Chinese Theater in Hollywood with thousands of other Superman fans, talking about comics, movies, televisions shows and any number of other topics is enough to put this experience at the top, but the simple fact that the director Bryan Singer was there and that, although I didn't get the chance to talk to him, he was inches away from me made this an amazing moment in my movie going history, and that's all before the movie even started! Hearing the cheers for the Spiderman 3 trailer, listening to the fans reactions to everything from the opening music to the standing ovation at the end of the movie made this movie more than just a movie, but as the name of this award suggests, an EXPERIENCE, and one that I'm proud to have been a part of.

Best Action Movie of the Year
Casino Royale
Daniel Craig is the new Bond and this is the way a Bond movie should be done, forget the naysayers that complain that, this being a prequel, there shouldn't be any cell phones, etc, because this isn't a prequel, it's a new beginning and a relaunch of the Bond franchise. And really is that a bad thing, there's not a lot of franchises that last 22 movie and span over 4 decades, so I welcome this "relaunch" and pray that they keep on this course. But Seriously in a year full of Action movies this one pulled ahead of the pack and lead with such ferocity that the others didn't stand a chance.

Best Movie of the Year: Runner-Up (Tie)
The Departed & Hollywoodland
Looking back I have to say that my favorite movies of the year are not what I though they'd be. I'm usually more of a Action or Comedy type guy but I'd classify all of the top 3 as Dramas. Although they couldn't be any different.
The Departed is a movie that I honestly had no desire in seeing. It was a Scorsese flick, and he does a good job, but I've never been a huge fan that had to run out and see his new movie, and honestly the preview looked to me like it gave away the entire movie, through in Leonardo and you've got a nice combination for a movie I didn't care about at all. But I kept hearing good things about it, so one day while Jeri was studying I went to see it, and a funny thing happened, I Loved It. Not only was it an enthralling plot, but the acting was magnificent. I didn't want it to end, and once again Leo proved why he's constantly employed, even if he was played out after Titanic, he truly is a gifted young man. But he's not the only one, everyone does a fantastic job in this movie, Matt Damon, Martin Sheen, Mark Wahlberg, Jack Nicholson, every one of them is fantastic. All in all a great movie, but even better it was a great Film.
Hollywoodland is quite possibly the best performance of Ben Affleck's career, no I take that back it is no doubt the best of his carrier. Ben does a fantastic job of playing George Reeves, a man whose death is still considered a mystery and is the basis for this film. There's really nothing bad to say about this film, it has an amazing cast that includes big names like Adrien Brody, Diane Lane, and Bob Hoskins, but it also has some of my favorite smaller names such as Caroline Dhavernas and Kathleen Robertson. The story is wonderful and doesn't try to shove one theory down your throat. Unfortunately I fear it won't get the recognition it deserves come award season.

Best Movie Of The Year

The Prestige

This is my favorite movie of the year. I have been waiting on this one since before last Christmas. Back then all I knew was that it was directed by Christopher Nolan (he of Batman Begins and Memento Fame) and starred Batman (Christian Bale) and Wolverine (Hugh Jackman) as dueling magicians. Then I got the novel for Christmas and read it in 3 days. The book was fantastic, but I was unsure how'd they take so much material and fit it onto the screen. But Nolan along with his brother Jonathan adapted the book in a fantastic way, changing a lot of the details and dropping one major subplot and making the material their own. The book and the film are completely different entities and I have to say I think I may have loved the movie even more than the book. Jackman and Bale do fantastic jobs bringing the characters to life and filling the screen with their presence. Scarlet Johansson is wonderful as the girl torn between the two men, but David Bowie steals the show as Nikola Tesla, the master of lightning whose own feud with Thomas Edison parallels the main story, but enough to distract us. The mystery of what has happened and the very creative way in which the Nolans have twisted the timeline so that we only see what they want us to see is until it's time for the final reveal is astonishing. In fact, as I said I'd read the book and it took my over halfway through the film to figure out what was going to happen (apparently I had forgotten) All in all my favorite of the year, and one that should win many awards come Oscar Season, but probably won't since some will see it as a "genre" film, which is to bad, because if more movies were as delightful as this one, there might be more people going to the movies these days.

There you go the Tiddies! If you or someone you know worked on one of these Award Winning films and would like to pick up the statue for the cast and crew please contact me so we can get it out to you. I hope everyone enjoyed the Awards show this year, even if we ran a little long and we look forward to seeing you next year.*

*The Tiddies are not real awards and no statue will actually be given out, because one doesn't exist, but you should feel honored anyway because I said so.


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