Ok…here they are! The top 5 films of 2011.
I haven’t peeked at Jake’s or Ryan’s lists yet (honestly) so I wonder how they will compare to mine.
Let us begin-
5. “The Help”
The top 5 was much more difficult to write up. I made several “scratches” on my original list. This was one of the films I moved up and down before finally landing at the number 5 position.
“The Help” was a much better movie than I expected. If I was an avid reader (I’m not), I probably would have searched out this book. EVERYONE I spoke with who had read the original story penned by Katheryn Stockett said this portrayal was EXACTLY what they expected. It’s a film about humanity- both at it’s best and it’s worst. HIGHLY recommend if you are one of the few who have yet to see it.
This almost made the number 1 spot. Maybe I should issue a disclaimer that I am a HUGE baseball fan.
The thing about this movie is you don’t need to be a fan (or even have a working knowledge) of the sport to enjoy Brad Pitt’s portrayal of Oakland A’s manager Billy Beane. It’s true story. An amazing one at that.
FANTASTIC performances by lead Brad Pitt and supporting Jonah Hill. Both deserve any awards nominations they receive. Pitt could get the big prize of Best Actor from the Academy.
3. “The Artist”
This film came out of NOWHERE to get the incredible buzz it has received. Who would have thought a movie that pays homage to the silent era of film would draw such critical acclaim?
Yes, it is a tad bit of an “artsy” film. If getting a little culture in your life is one of your resolutions for the new year, you might want to start with “The Artist”. The acting is superb and the cinematography really takes you to an era long gone. We live in an age where technology can pass anyone by in an instant, perhaps this story could be told about any type of “change” and how one adapts- or doesn’t.
“The Artist” could, perhaps, win Best Picture at the Oscars.
2. “The Descendants”
This movie was another one I didn’t expect o like much. Number one issue was it’s lead George Clooney. Let’s face it, you either like him or you don’t. I (mostly) fall into the latter. Sure, “Oceans Eleven, Twelve etc etc” are fun to watch, but Clooney just gets to me.
He got to me in this film, but in a good way. He is GREAT in the character of Matt King- a man who comes to terms with his dysfunctional family only when he has to. Many reviewers have described this movie as part humorous, part tragic. That pretty much sums it up.
Clooney could win Best Actor. I would NOT object. “The Descendants” is another that would deserve Best Picture.
And now- here is my number ONE.
1. “War Horse”
This wasn’t even in my top 10 just a few weeks ago. Yes, it is Steven Spielberg. Yes, it is BEAUTIFULLY shot. And, yes, it is a POWERFUL story. As if that isn’t enough to make it a pick for best of 2011, there is this- I dare anyone to sit through “War Horse” and not be impacted in some way.
This movie is an emotional roller coaster. You have been warned.
Based on the story by British author Michael Morpugo, “War Horse” is set in Europe circa World War I.
This film is about hope. I am aware that there have been MANY movies with this theme- but none as fantastically portrayed as in “War Horse”.
Being that Spielberg is a “darling of the Academy”, expect this to get SEVERAL nominations. It might even win it all. “War Horse”, in my opinion, will have earned it.