On Demand Weekly's Cynthia Kane and Sean McPhillips offer their Top 10 Movies of 2010. Tell us what you think of the their lists or what your #1 movie of 2010 is HERE.
Part I - Cynthia's is HERE.
Part II - Sean's is below.
Sean McPhillips' Top 10 Movies of 2010
2010 started out as a wasteland for film (the only refuges were at the Film Forum and other art house theaters playing Chaplin classics and other repertory material) but then the summer ended and it turned into one of the most competitive years on record. Numbering films is absurd because it’s apples and figs but for the sake of adhering to the definition of a “list” here it is…
*Criteria: If I saw a film/movie and could not stop thinking about it or talking about it (in a good way) and felt compelled to make others watch, it made the list.
10. BLUE VALENTINE (The Weinstein Company)
What a great spin on a romantic drama. Formula be damned! Filmmaking is top notch. Ryan Gosling is a lethal acting weapon. (just keep him away from your girlfriend!) The fight they had making this thing and then rating it deserves your attention! (It’s not a happy tale, but a meaningful one.)
9. INCEPTION (Warner Brothers) AVAILABLE NOW ON DEMAND
Saw it three times and the last on IMAX. I agree with critics that it is “slow” but it pulled me in more and more with each viewing. Ended up talking about it a LOT with friends. The “truck going off the bridge” sequence is one of the best I’ve ever seen. Uh oh…I’m starting to think about that spinning top again…
8. EXIT THROUGH THE GIFT SHOP (Producers Distribution Agency PDA) AVAILABLE NOW ON DEMAND
Made it to the Oscar “short list” and it deserves all the kudos. The origins, the transformation and questions it raises make it superior documentary (is that what it is? Not sure). Anyway, it’s a highly entertaining piece on some great characters with daring attitudes and the narration of Banksy is worth the price of admission.
7. DADDY LONGLEGS (IFC Films) AVAILABLE NOW ON DEMAND
Reviewed this one earlier in the year and sat and made people watch it in person just to experience their reactions. It is beautiful, sensitive and original. Cutting edge performances in my opinion. No wonder the filmmaking brothers, Josh and Ben Safdie, got to curate their own BAM screening series (their influences in film no less!) I became a huge fan instantly and look forward to what’s next (though I wish this one had more attention!)
6. 127 HOURS (Fox Searchlight) - I programmed it in my film series.
The rabbit Danny Boyle pulled out on this one stuns the brain. Everyone was afraid to see it, but I told them they would watch the film and feel reborn. No one told me I was wrong afterward. My worship of Boyle continues and Franco delivered in a way all of us Freaks and Geeks fans knew he would one day.
5. BLACK SWAN (Fox Searchlight)
A female psycho-horror “Wrestler!” Nice! I go to Aronofsky for visceral filmmaking and I got it. The calculated shots with SFX are stunning in execution. Saw it three times and liked it more each time. (*bring the ladies if you want someone jumping into your lap.)
4. WHO IS HARRY NILSSON (AND WHY IS EVERYBODY TALKIN’ ABOUT HIM?) (Lorber Films)
I cannot say enough good about this documentary. It’s entertaining, moving and thoroughly fascinating. The portrait director John Scheinfeld paints of the Beatles’ favorite American rock artist sent me straight to karaoke to belt out “Without You.” I must have made 5 friends see the film in person and convinced others through constant raving. They all thanked me profusely. See this film and proselytize!
3. A PROPHET (Sony Pictures Classics)
Gave me that City of God feeling. Almost that Goodfellas feeling. That fuzzy place where you’re content in the womb-like presence of superior film talent all around. And the ending makes you want to stay in your seat and hope the clean-up staff misses you so you can watch it again. F’ing awesome.
2. TOY STORY 3 (The Walt Disney Company, Pixar) AVAILABLE NOW ON DEMAND
I could fill up the page with superlatives about Pixar’s continued ability to blow my mind. They have the best scripts, characterization and execution in all of entertainment today. This movie had it all. Only reason it isn’t #1 is because it’s a sequel.
Find out Sean's #1 Movie of 2010, the films that almost made his Top 10 and his Worst Movies of 2010 after the jump...
Clicker HERE to read Cynthia Kane' Top 10 Movies of 2010
1. THE SOCIAL NETWORK (Columbia Pictures)
I think when we all heard there was going to be a “Facebook movie” there was a collective groan. Then it became my favorite Fincher movie (yes, even more than Fight Club, fan boys) Saw it four times. Even took my mom and aunt one pouring night. When we got home, they asked me to take them through a tour of Facebook. Priceless.
Eisenberg deserves all the noms because that character is at once believable and yet a completely fictional Mark Zuckerberg. Best casting – him and Armie Hammer (twice). Loved the Reznor soundtrack. Spellbinding – enough to make me want to see it again.
THE KING’S SPEECH (The Weinstein Company)
Everyone loved the film and it’s probably true that it’s between Firth and Franco for best male. I programmed the film in my series and felt that relaxed calm one feels when one’s audience is about to experience a real treat and thank you for it! It’s so obvious I couldn’t place it in the top ten.
THE FIGHTER (Paramount Pictures)
Never liked O’Russell (that’s my Irish name for him). Don’t care about anything he’s done. LOVED this movie. All the performances are amazing but Bale is an absolute spectacle and the reason I cannot wait to see it again. O’Russell knocked this one out of the parking lot.
CLIENT 9: THE RISE AND FALL OF ELIOT SPITZER (Magnolia Pictures)
Director Alex Gibney turned a potentially head-scratching concept into one of the most intriguing pieces of political scrutiny in years. I programmed this film in my series and loved watching it a second and third time back in theaters!
JOAN RIVERS: A PIECE OF WORK
Great bio of a work-a-holic. Joan gets more kudos from me than 95% of people in entertainment. Absorbing and entertaining. Go Joan.
TRUE GRIT (Paramount Pictures)
I'm not a Coen guy (I liked RAISING ARIZONA). But the performance of Hailee Steinfeld makes this film worth watching aside from the filmmaking and Bridges (mumbling his way through the film so half the audience has no idea what he’s saying). It didn’t change my life at all, but it was one of the best films made this year and if you like westerns as I do, it’s good to see a well-made one.
ANIMAL KINGDOM (Sony Pictures Classics)
Missed it. Cannot wait to see it.
THE LOUSY LIST:
I fell asleep for a lot of this film and woke up and didn’t care. That NEVER happens. This film was death!
IRON MAN 2
People seemed to like it. I hated it for it’s mindless set pieces and zero characterization. Such a step down from the first one. Booo.
This had early buzz as being “great.” Aside from a few funny moments it was pure paint drying. I brought others to see it, thinking it was going to be an acting tour de force. I regretted it.
The film didn’t live up to that amazing DAFT PUNK soundtrack. I’ll repeat my Facebook update: “Effects, pretty cool. Script: End of line.”
It was clear to me that half of this was manufactured. But if you want to see a “documentary” about, rich, smug Williamsburg hipsters teaching a lesson in morality to a poor Midwestern woman with handicapped children who keeps herself entertained by being someone else on Facebook, knock yourself out.
- Sean McPhillps
Sean McPhillips reviews film & TV for On Demand Weekly. He is a former VP, Acquisitions for Miramax Films. He works as programmer for the Furman Film Series and the inaugural Gold Coast International Film Festival (debuts 6/11). As a writer/director his short films have played in festivals around the world. www.secrethideoutfilms.com
Check out some of Sean McPhillips' other reviews:
LIFE DURING WARTIME - On Demand