An avid movie collector reviews movies, games, and TV shows for the common man, among other things. Spoiler Free

Thursday, January 12, 2006

Finally an update. And its a whopper. I have ended every year with a movie list breakdown of the best films I watched that year (Watched being the key word many of these were released in 2004, plus I added Memoirs of a Geisha because it was watched before I made this list) 50 new movies were viewed and the list begins now.

Last - Resident Evil 2 – Nemesis

Not even deserving to be ranked, this will be known as last. I loved the original and this one could have ripped it off entirely and been better off than this horrid nightmare of a movie.

48. Alien vs. Predator

I hyped this on my blog, and I was soooo betrayed. I thought it would take effort and strategy to ruin this movie and they schemed it well. “Take two of the coolest villains from sci-fi and have them battle mindlessly with no cool action sequences. Add people whom we never even come close to caring about and sprinkle a useless story with a sickening Predator 2 rip-off ending. Ah yes this will truly suck.”

47. Hide and Seek

Similar to Secret Window but far worse. The multiple personalities thing is so abused that when I started thinking that was where they were going I thought ‘No Way, DeNiro would know better than to do a Multiple Personality Reveal at the end” So I dismissed it, but after I saw the alternatives be eliminated I turned to my wife disgusted and said “They didn’t actually make it Robert DeNiro did they?” And minutes later the shocker of an ending came down and surprised no one. I swore off movies for awhile and cursed DeNiro for making me think he was better than this.

46. The Bourne Supremacy

I hated the first one and for some reason I watched this one anyway. After vomiting from the lousy shaky camerawork I realized that once again I was routing for the hero to die. He didn’t and I did inside. 1 decent car chase saves this from being lower on the list.

45. Hellboy

I never cared about the characters, which made everything else, as lousy as it was anyway, even worse.

44. Grand Theft Parsons

I thought this sounded like a great silly caper movie. With Johnny Knoxville at the lead I thought I was assured that, but it was far more dramatic and unfunny. Not horrible but I was fooled and I therefore punish this movie with 44th.

43. Open Water

Wait, Dean ranked a shark movie in his bottom 10? Yes and I will tell you why. No action, almost no sharks. The dialogue was lousy although I wouldn’t have bought anything else they could have said because of their circumstances. You wait the whole movie for the big finish and it whimpers. Boo

42. Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy

I didn’t get it. It was funny once or twice.

41. Robots

Worst kids movie in years. Mostly for the ending, they really hammed it up for cheap gags like the Britney Spears routine in the middle of a battle. After the arrival of Pixar I don’t take this garbage anymore.

40. Without a Paddle

This was funny yet stupid everything I expected it to be. It wasn’t repeat viewings funny though so…40.

39. The Man with the Screaming Brain

Bruce Campbell in a ridiculous B-Movie, with everything you would expect from Bruce Campbell. Some corny dialogue, silly acting from his peers, and a prosthetic forehead for his real head. They Might be Giants would have been proud and I was too. But like Without a Paddle I don’t know about repeat viewings.

38. Paparazzi

I really like Cole Hauser so I wanted this to be great. It was good. But Tom Sizemore was a perfect jerk. You wanted his pain so bad, so for delivering on that note gets kudos. Otherwise nothing special.

37. White Noise

I was entertained, but it was boring at points and didn't have enough truly scary parts.

36. Kung Fu Hustle

I liked Shaolin Soccer and the idea of his humor in a martial arts movie was wonderful, but this was not as good as his first movie which ranks higher on my list. The story was awkward and the ending was too much. A few funny moments save the movie, I just didn’t like the progression through the acts.

35. Secret Window

Stephen King is a favorite of mine, but his movies lately all really feel like they would have been great books and were ok to lousy movies. Dreamcatcher was the last to make me think that and it ranked about the same place in my list that year. This was saved by Johnny Depp and Maria Bello, Dreamcatcher had no such luck.

34. Envy

Jack Black is funny, even in this sub-par movie. But throw in Christopher Walken, ah beautiful sillyness.

33. Constantine

The villains were great and the effects were cool. Everything else. Meh

32. The Machinist

Christian Bale is mind-searing in his emaciated role, but the story never quite hit me right, and you close thinking. “Who Cares?”

31. The Cooler

William H. Macy was brilliant in this movie, and with great support from Alec Baldwin and Maria Bello this was a good film. Kind of a bummer at points, but the ending makes it better. If the pacing would have been raised I would have loved it more.

30. Layer Cake

Watched this today and was entertained, although the ending soured the movie. Was a few editing choices away from being at least 10 higher on my list.

29. Chronicles of Riddick

Vin Diesel is great in action roles, and after Pitch Black thrilled me I had to catch this even though I knew I would be disappointed. I was. But a few good scenes plus Alexa Davalos from Angel and I forgave.

28. Ong Bak – The Thai Warrior

Great and Amazing fight sequences. Fast forward the rest.

27. Anchorman

One of the funniest moments I have seen all year wrapped in a decent silly comedy. The cameos are great most notably Jack Black and Tim Robbins, but Steve Carell and Will Farrell are the reasons to see this.

26. After the Sunset

Just a fun movie. I had been rocking the island soundtrack for months before seeing the movie that spawned it. It was funny and interesting and what else could you want. I have high hopes for Pierce Brosnan now that his Bond days are over.

25. Chronicles of Narnia

This film was very disappointing to me. I felt the story was weak, although I direct my angst at the director who did a lousy job condensing the story. The special effects were good although not Lord of the Rings good. And Tilda Swinton was blood chilling, but a few minor changes would have really improved the movie for me. Namely a mount up type scene that would help us viewers understand how a 12 year old boy went from sniveling brat to General and Swordmaster in less than a day without training. Or how walking up a hill for 5 minutes suddenly took you into another hemisphere. The saving grace is the Centaur who wields dual blades and rocks house.

24. Ella Enchanted

Fun Family Fair, with an enjoyable story and good characters. The Romance was good in a Disney type fashion, and Anne Hathaway proved she has the charisma to leave this type of film behind, although I don’t know if Havok would have been my next movie choice.

23. Finding Neverland

Johnny Depp and Kate Winslet in a cute drama. Cute Dramas usually fill in the middle of my list but this is kind of alone this year.

22. War of the Worlds

People berated it for its ending as if it wasn’t a remake, and was trying to pass it off as original. This was an entertaining suspense movie that took an interesting perspective by sticking with the family instead of giving a global view of the chaos. I liked it.

21. Shaolin Soccer

Stephen Chow’s finer movie that was cute, and hilarious, and almost made me care about soccer. Although you must note it took slapstick humor and flaming balls to make that happen.

20. The Butterfly Effect

I shocked myself when I found myself liking this. And it made me forgive Ashton Kutcher and finally appreciate That 70’s Show. This was a good thriller that had you hooked all the way through.

19. Hitch

A charming romantic comedy made better by every second Kevin James is on screen. Will Smith played the rom-com well and might do well to revisit this genre in the future.

18. Saved

An interesting look at Christian hypocrisy and moral dilemmas. I was intrigued but I found a few of the writing choices weakened the ideas of the film.

17. Land of the Dead

Romero returns and I had to watch it. I missed his campiness until the sling-head zombie showed up and I was OK. I like Dawn of the Dead in both forms better but this was worth the money.

16. The 40 Year Old Virgin

Hilarious. And surprising moral, although the content will keep me from owning it, an edited version of the film would be worth checking out.

15. Memoirs of a Geisha

This was far more engaging than I originally though it would be. I envisioned a cinematic color show like Hero but was pleased to find a touching drama instead. Although I think my western mind had trouble with the story points namely a girl falling in love with a man when she is 12 and growing up to be with him.

14. Beyond the Sea

Kevin Spacey is excellent, and his strange path through Bobby Darin’s life was enjoyable on every front. Plus you get Bob Hoskins and John Goodman.

13. Garden State

I liked this and probably couldn’t explain why intelligently. Yup

12. Star Wars Episode 3

I was so disappointed with this film I tried for days to defend it in my mind. I have since given up. The sudden turn of Anakin will forever haunt my dreams and tarnished my memories and love of this franchise. Yet any movie with Samuel L. Jackson can’t be bad.

11. Mr. and Mrs. Smith

Lots of people loath Angelina Jolie, I am not one of them and therefore could enjoy this action comedy fully. I almost wish I had caught this on the big sreen.

10.5 Mindhunters

You ever make a list and forget something until the very end. Well a more patient man would have made this movie number 11 and bump everything else down one. I make it 10.5. This movie was a great thriller from the Agatha Christie camp of murder mysteries. And with LL Cool J how could you go wrong?

10. Exorcism of Emily Rose

CJ knew the Director from school so we had to watch it. And any opportunity to actually get my wife to see a horror movie with me is one I can’t pass up. This was not the horror movie I had wanted but it was sufficient, while the drama and courtroom battle featuring Laura Linney, who never disappoints, was good enough to make it into the top ten.

9. Million Dollar Baby

This movie will harm you emotionally. You can’t help but love the characters and the acting and it makes the ending so much more impressive. Clint and everyone involved deserved the awards.

8. Saw

Great little indie-horror film which was able to bring in some big talent like Cary Elwes and Danny Glover. The tension was tight and never let up, and the ending was great. One of the best horror films in awhile.

7. Shaun of the Dead

A wicked funny spoof on a beloved thing, Zombie movies. It was probably the first movie I saw in 2005 and it remained in the top ten even after 40+ movies tried to knock it out.

6. Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire

I’m a Harry Potter fan although I skip the books in favor of the movies (I would rather enjoy the books afterwards I think since the books are almost always superior) This could have been the best one yet, I don’t know. They are too similar to compare in my mind.

5. Unleashed

Jet Li’s finest movie has probably 2 of the greatest 5 fight scenes ever in this film. That alone would have cracked the top ten. But the dramatic storyline heightened with Bob Hoskins and Morgan Freeman in the mix puts this in the top 5.

4. The Life Aquatic

Wes Anderson’s best film was quirky perfection.

3. Batman Begins

A return to glory for Batman with Christopher Nolan at the helm and Christian Bale in the tights. Wouldn’t have been as good without a stunning supporting cast, and a return to the “dark” world of the “Dark Knight”.

2. Sin City

Would have been number 1 if not for my affinity for that film. This was a wholly original and unique film with memorable and brilliant characters. I can’t wait for a sequel and I gobbled up all the special features on the ultimate edition DVD.

1. Serenity

Firefly will probably remain my favorite TV show of all time and so the film sequel to the early demised show would have to conquer my film list of the year. If I had to weigh them on their own merit it would have bowed a few spots but my deep love for the show and its characters made it the most enjoyable film experience of the year and the only film I caught more than once in the theatre this year.

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