1-20 of 2147 items from 2011 « Prev | Next »
Ultra-violent and yet elegant and character driven at the same time, some believe it's in line for recognition on Oscar night. We'll know in the new year if it's been nominated but it certainly put Gosling on the global radar and, in the meantime, it will steer on to Blu-ray, DVD and digital dowload on January 30.
Announcing the release, Icon Home Entertainment said: "Since its worldwide premier at the Cannes International Film Festival in May 2011, where Winding Refn claimed the prestigious Best Director award, Drive has wowed audiences and critics alike.
"With a star-making turn from »
- David Bentley
As 2011 comes to a close it’s time to look back on the year in movies. It’s always tough for me to come up with a yearly best movie list because I never feel I’ve seen everything by Jan. 1. By this time of year I’m still trying to finish watching the award contenders (still on my list: Hugo, War Horse, Moneyball, Tinker Tailor Solider Spy, The Help).
So here are 10 movie moments from 2011 (in no particular order) that have stayed with me.
“I Want You To Help Me Find A Killer of Women”
I know you’re probably tired of hearing this line as it’s in all the TV spots and trailers for David Fincher‘s The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo, but after seeing the movie there was no better moment for me than when Mikael seeks out Lisbeth for her help. The look Rooney Mara »
- Jason Guerrasio
As 2011 comes to a close it’s hard to say whether it was a good or bad year for movies. It started out a bit slow but the latter half of the year produced some of my favorite movies in recent years. The following, is the list of what I think are the 10 best films of the year, in order. I will preface this, by saying I did not yet see a few(Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy, Martha Marcy May Marlene, etc) which based on most reviews might bump their way into my list once I’ve seen them.
At a point where comic book movies are churned out every few months, 2011 brought us the best one since The Dark Knight three years ago. One of the films I was legitimately worried about, turned out to be what was one of the best summer blockbusters »
- Scott Smith
2011 was one of the best years for film in recent years. There are about 25 films that could have made my top ten list and each film in my top 5 could be my number one. I saw about 100 films this year and I still wish I could have seen more. I feel very comfortable with my top ten and I feel like it was a good representative of the year in film. However I do feel that people looking at this article should go over to Sound On Sight and see all the staff’s individual lists, as well as the honorable mentions that just missed my list. You will find a great collection of films on those lists.
Directed by Sean Durkin
I saw Sean Durkin’s directorial debut in August and knew as soon as the last frame came up that this was the best picture of the year. »
- Josh Youngerman
Cinema had a pretty good year in 2011. The summer saw an onslaught of costumed hero flicks, which to my great surprise were all pretty good. Hollywood has turned off the cheese factor on comic adaptations, lining up great directors and better actors. The biggest surprise of 2011 was the remarkable success of The Artist, a charming silent film by French director Michael Hazanavicius. Since its premiere at the Cannes Film Festival, it has been a critical and awards favorite. The Artist should be a lock to win the Best Film Oscar.
My favorite film of 2011 is Gavin O'Connor's Warrior. I had no idea what to expect when I saw this movie in September and was completely blown away. A brutal fighting film, the fisticuffs pale in comparison to the gripping family drama. Tom Hardy and Joel Edgerton play two brothers, long separated by the childhood abuse of their father - Nick Nolte, »
Trailers are an under-appreciated art form insofar that many times they’re seen as vehicles for showing footage, explaining films away, or showing their hand about what moviegoers can expect. Foreign, domestic, independent, big budget: I celebrate all levels of trailers and hopefully this column will satisfactorily give you a baseline of what beta wave I’m operating on, because what better way to hone your skills as a thoughtful moviegoer than by deconstructing these little pieces of advertising? Some of the best authors will tell you that writing a short story is a lot harder than writing a long one, that you have to weigh every sentence. What better medium to see how this theory plays itself out beyond that than with movie trailers? I'll get this out of the way now: Harry Potter is not on this list. I only mention this as I was excoriated back in »
- Christopher Stipp
1. Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past Lives
Back in February I called Chris Ware’s poster “definitely an early contender for the best of 2011” and eight months later nothing has come close in terms of ingenuity, beauty and sheer graphic skill. It’s fitting that Uncle Boonmee was also one of the year’s best films. Read all about it here.
2. The Trip
Not the official poster for Michael Winterbottom’s foodie road trip, nor even the wonderful teaser poster which channelled Vik Muniz in a couple of dirty plates, but one of eight strikingly varied and witty alternative posters designed by Mojo, for what purpose I’m not entirely sure. All of them were terrific—you can see them here—and I’m ranking them second for the collective effort, but my favorite was this take on the great 1932 Dubonnet posters of A.M. Cassandre (whose Triplex poster »
As the music industry is busy writing its own obituary, music on film keeps getting better and better. The year's biggest music-on-film hits were not necessarily original tunes (Wagner probably provided the most memorable aural experience at theaters), the soundtracks of "Drive" and "The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo" provided new ear candy. The Electro-Pop Mood Music of "Drive" is a Hipster Hit As Ryan Gosling navigated the streets of La with the greatest of ease, a sexy electronic score pulsed through the screen. The Playlist has a list of the songs that set the mood for Mr. Gosling's sexy cruising. The very Euro indie, which got much praise when it debuted at Cannes and took a home a directing award for Nicolas Winding Refn, got just as much attention for its soundtrack led by Europop with breezy female vocals. Novelty Tamil Song Beats Bollywood at Its Own Game It's »
After highlighting other areas in film this year (here), it is time to share our favorites. Compiled in eight separate lists featuring over 100 films, you will find everything we’ve loved over the last 365 days. It was difficult to cut down my personal list, as this year has been full of many quality films I would love to highlight, with almost 350 viewed. Our hope is one will use this feature to catch up on any missed films, revisit the ones that you’ve adored and give others a second chance. I kick off things below, then look for links at the bottom of each page to venture further.
Jordan Raup’s Top 10 of 2011
- firstname.lastname@example.org (thefilmstage.com)
Quite a few critics' best-of lists have implied 2011 was a pretty average year for popcorn movies. Throw in the fact that 2012 is set to deliver The Dark Knight Rises, Prometheus and the first part of The Hobbit, and it doesn't augur well for an annual round-up of the past 12 months' top fanboy-friendly films. But while there has been nothing this year to compare with the head-spinning brio of 2010's Inception or the epic, flawed genius of 2009's Watchmen, the overall quality of fantasy, sci-fi and comic book fare has definitely been on the way up.
That's not to say we haven't had our fair share of distinctly non-festive turkeys. Green Lantern was an almighty mess dogged by a ropey script, dodgy CGI, and wooden chemistry between Ryan Reynolds and just about everyone else on screen. »
- Ben Child
Like just about every Us-based critics group — year in, year out — the Online Film Critics Society has placed its focus on English-language productions this awards season. True, critics' fave The Artist, a French-made production, is in the running in several categories, including Best Film, but Michel Hazanavicius' comedy-drama is a) silent (which makes it seem less "foreign") b) set in Hollywood c) features several American/British actors in supporting roles. In any case, Terrence Malick's family drama The Tree of Life, starring Brad Pitt, Sean Penn, and Jessica Chastain, topped the Online Critics list of nominees, with a total of seven nods. Those include Best Film, Best Director, Best Original Screenplay (Malick), and supporting nominations for Pitt and Chastain (photo, with Laramie Eppler and Tye Sheridan). [Full list of Online Film Critics Awards nominations.] Nicolas Winding Refn's thriller Drive, starring Ryan Gosling, Carey Mulligan, and Albert Brooks, was next with six nods. The film itself, »
- Andre Soares
Lee Byung-hun, I Saw the Devil This year, the Austin Film Critics went for some unusual — though not exactly "surprising" — choices. Well, with one exception: Jee-woon Kim's revenge thriller I Saw the Devil, their Best Foreign Language Film. To date, Us-based critics have gone instead for Pedro Almodóvar's The Skin I Live In, Asghar Farhadi's A Separation, or Takashi Miike's 13 Assassins. Earlier this year, I Saw the Devil, about a young man (Lee Byung-hun) out to avenge the murder of his pregnant wife, won an Asian Film Award for Best Editing. [Full list of Austin Film Critics winners.] Martin Scorsese's 3D ode to the magic of movies, Hugo, was selected as the Best Film of 2011. Elsewhere, Us critics have been leaning more heavily toward another ode to the magic movies, Michel Hazanavicius' black-and-white silent comedy-drama The Artist, which, curiously, failed to top any of the Austin Critics' categories. Take Shelter's »
- Steve Montgomery
Ryan Gosling was back at his Mma class in La today after also working up a sweat during a training session there yesterday. He's been emerging from the fitness sessions shoeless, though he picked up a new pair during a shopping trip to a mixed martial arts store this week. It looks like Ryan is maintaining the fit form that we saw in one of his shirtless moments this year, but 2011 wasn't just about Ryan's sexy form. He had multiple movie hits, including Crazy, Stupid, Love, Drive, and The Ides of March, and he's already being recognized for his work. Crazy, Stupid, Love is up for favorite comedy movie at the People's Choice Awards, while Ryan's nominated for a best actor Golden Globe for Ides. Make sure to place your predictions for Golden Globe winners for a chance to take home $1,000! View Slideshow › »
- Lauren Turner
The Online Film Critics Society, of which I’m a member, has announced our nominees for our 2011 awards. The Tree of Life received the most nominations -- seven, for Best Picture, Best Director, Best Supporting Actor (Brad Pitt), Best Supporting Actress (Jessica Chastain), Best Original Screenplay, Best Editing, and Best Cinematography -- with Drive coming second, with six nominations: Best Picture, Best Director, Best Supporting Actor (Albert Brooks), Best Adapted Screenplay, Best Editing, and Best Cinematography. Click over to ofcs.org for the complete list of nominees. Winners will be announced on January 2, 2012. »
- MaryAnn Johanson
So what were the top films of 2011? It's a really tough question to ask, and a pretty bold one to answer among peers with equally strong opinions. I've been reading through a lot of the 2011 film retrospectives, top 10's, and best of lists with many critics complaining about 2011 being a light year for great film. I personally disagree. Sure the mega-plexes didn't offer much substance in 2011, but cheer up Charlie because if you stuck close to the arthouse theaters then you found the golden tickets. The nominations and votes of the Smells Like Screen Spirit staff have been tallied and scored to represent the collective opinion of the total results. As always we encourage you to agree or debate in the comments section; so without further ado I give you Smells Like Screen Spirit's Top 10 Films of 2011: 10. Bellflower "Painfully discussing the highs and lows of love, as well »
- Dave Campbell
Asa Butterfield, Sacha Baron Cohen, Hugo I Saw The Devil: Austin Film Critics Biggest Surprise Winner Best Film Hugo, directed by Martin Scoresese Top Ten Films (runners-up) Drive by Nicolas Winding Ref Take Shelter by Jeff Nichols Midnight in Paris by Woody Allen Attack the Block by Joe Cornish The Artist by Michel Hazanavicius Martha Marcy May Marlene by Sean Durkin I Saw the Devil by Jee-woon Kim 13 Assassins by Takashi Miike Melancholia by Lars von Trier Best Foreign Language Film I Saw the Devil, South Korea, directed by Jee-woon Kim Best Director Nicolas Winding Refn, Drive Best Actor Michael Shannon, Take Shelter Best Actress Tilda Swinton, We Need to Talk About Kevin Best Supporting Actor Albert Brooks, Drive Best Supporting Actress Jessica Chastain, Take Shelter Best Original Screenplay Midnight in Paris, Woody Allen Best Adapted Screenplay Drive, Hossein Amini Best Cinematography The Tree of Life, Emmanuel Lubezki Best Original Score Attack the Block, »
- Steve Montgomery
2011 gave us a lot of great music (as I rounded up here), but there was one composer who stood out from the pack with his distinctive scores (two of which made my year-end list) for films that ranged from a backseat law practice (The Lincoln Lawyer) to a viral epidemic (Contagion) to a near silent stunt driver by day, getaway driver by night (Drive). Three very different films with three distinct scores, all from the same composer – Cliff Martinez. Martinez has garnered the most attention and praise for his score for Drive, but he also created impressive (and memorable) music for The Lincoln Lawyer and Contagion. The Lincoln Lawyer may not have been the biggest hit at the box office, but it was a decent film and it stood out in my mind more than I thought it would, thanks to its music. The same was the case with Contagion, a »
- Allison Loring
The Scorpion King 3: Battle for Redemption continues the story of warrior Mathayus (originally played by Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, then Michael Copon and now played by Victor Webster) who is now a deadly assassin… Despatched by the King of Egypt, Horus (Pearlman) to protect his ally King Ramusan, in return for his services Mathayus is offered Ramusan’s daughter Silda’s hand in marriage, as well as the legendary Eye of the Gods medallion which imparts extraordinary supernatural powers to its wearer. However, all is not so simple. In order to redeem his reward, Mathayus must show his strength and courage by rescuing Princess Silda who is being held captive by Horus’ scheming brother Talus (Billy Zane).
So let me get this straight, »
Jessica Chastain, Brad Pitt in Terrence Malick's The Tree of Life Lars von Trier, Kirsten Dunst, A Separation, John Hawkes : Online Film Critics Surprise Nominees Best Picture The Artist The Descendants Drive Hugo The Tree of Life Best Film Not in the English Language 13 Assassins Certified Copy A Separation The Skin I Live In Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past Lives Best Animated Feature The Adventures of Tintin Arthur Christmas Kung Fu Panda 2 Rango Winnie the Pooh Best Director Michel Hazanavicius – The Artist Terrence Malick – The Tree of Life Nicolas Winding Refn – Drive Martin Scorsese – Hugo Lars von Trier – Melancholia Best Lead Actor George Clooney – The Descendants Jean Dujardin – The Artist Michael Fassbender – Shame Gary Oldman – Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy Michael Shannon – Take Shelter Best Lead Actress Kirsten Dunst – Melancholia Elizabeth Olsen – Martha Marcy May Marlene Meryl Streep – The Iron Lady Tilda Swinton – We Need to Talk About Kevin »
- Steve Montgomery
We start the Top 7. You finish the Top 10. Or in this case, I give you 14 films.
Two themes seemed to keep popping up in 2011; nostalgia and forgetting. The forgetting specifically came in the form of Alzheimer’s disease. Friends with Benefits, A Separation, Rise of the Planet of the Apes, The Descendants, and 50/50 all had a key character with Alzheimer’s. On the flip side, nostalgia seemed central to many films. The Artist is an homage to silent films, while Hugo pays tribute as well. The Muppets and Winnie the Pooh told stories that could have existed when those timeless characters were first created (tapping in to our nostalgia). Young Adult exists because of high school nostalgia. Super 8 is the nostalgia of Steven Spielberg through the eyes of J.J. Abrams. Midnight in Paris is most-definitely an obvious nostalgia for Paris in the 1920s.
Don’t forget to remember. That »
- Jeff Bayer
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