Number 10. – Me, Myself, & Irine
Me, Myself & Irene is one of the finest films directed by the Farrelly Brothers. For me, this is Jim Carrey’s last funny film. After this film he started going off the deep end, and made a couple of really bad films. But this is a fine Swan song to a good comedic actor. The humour in this film sharp, witty and crude. But thats what makes it so funny. Renee Zellwegger gives her only good performance of her career, as she’s quite the bad actress. However in this film, this is one of the best comedies that the Farrelly Brothers have made. The humour in Me, Myself & Irene is very low brow as you’d expect from the Farrelly’s. This is one of their best films. Jim Carrey is very funny in this film, and it sucks that he hasn’t made anything watchable since this film. The cast do a good job here. Theres plenty of scenes that are memorable, especially every scene involving Jim Carrey’s sons. The film is very well done, with non stop laughs. The humour may not appeal to everyone, but for fans of most of the Farrely Brothers films, you won’t be disappointed, I personally preferred this film over There’s Something About Mary. Some of the cast are surprising, I did not expect to see Richard Jenkins here and Chris Cooper, both have played in excellent films, but it’s great to see them doing something different. Me,Myself & Irene is one of my favorite comedies and it definitely brings on big laughs, a great comedy.
Number 9. – Traffic
Traffic is one of those films that transcends the process and the art of filmmaking and becomes something else entirely. It defines experimental filmmaking at its finest and excels at everything in every way possible. Starring an amalgam of talent from Benicio Del Toro, Catherine Zeta-Jones, Michael Douglas, Miguel Ferrer, Luis Guzman, Don Cheadle and Dennis Quaid, with even small bit parts by Albert Finney, Benjamin Bratt, Topher Grace, Salma Hayek and James Brolin. Absolutely unbelievable, and they all give top notch performances. Steven Soderbergh’s choice to film the three stories in three different ways using different lenses, filters, film stocks and photochemical procresses gives the film its identity as a living, breathing thing and not just another film. One of my favorite filmmakers working today, Steven Soderbergh always surprises me and keeps me interested in his work, which makes him incredibly appealing to filmmakers.
Number 8. – O Brother, Where Art Thou?
Another good movie by the Coen Brothers. The movie I had to admit was better than what I expected, it was an adventure more or less for those 3 escaped convicts. This movie was good but it’s one of those movies for me that I would only watch this one time and that’s it. Each character is wonderfully exploited and harkens back to the days of old when films were rich with character actors whose very appearance in the film adds richness, texture and authenticity. George Clooney is magnificent as the grease haired Everett Ulysses McGill, a honest con on the run whose pompous linguistics and vocabulary are comical and endearing. If you’re a Coen or Clooney fan this is the film for you. Everrett Ullysus McGill, sick of breaking rocks in the heat of a Mississippi summer, escapes with his two dim accomplices, Delmar and Pete. Trying to reclaim a buried treasure before its lost forever underneath a lake, the three make their way to Everett’s homestead. Along the way, they meet a conniving one-eyed Bible salesman, a blind prophet, a trio of sexy sirens, and a man who sold his soul to the devil. In their race to reach the treasure before it’s flooded, they end up crashing a Ku Klux Klan lynch mob, help a sensitive Baby-Face Nelson rob three banks in two hours, and even have enough time to put out a best selling record as “The Soggy Bottom Boys.”
Number 7. – X-Men
he very first X-Men film, the backbone of the modern comicbook adaptations craze, the one that started it all. Had this film not done as well as it did then we possibly wouldn’t have all the superhero flicks we have today. Heck just looking at the films poster shows how far this genre has come, its positively awful, bland and extremely unimaginative, the two groups just standing there against a city skyline, eh? Director Bryan Singer gives audiences a good introduction to the X-men universe. The film does a good job in presenting the world of X-men in a way that is believable and seemingly realistic. The movie provides plenty of thrilling action while at the same time providing a story that is intriguing but nothing special. The only big flaw with the story is that Wolverine is given too much focus, robbing other characters of screen time. The cast is very well rounded, everybody seems to fit their part well. Hugh Jackman was born to play Wolverine. Despite the flaws, X-men amounts to a very good superhero movie. At first I was a little disappointed because they changed so much around and excluded quite a few of my favorite mutants. But time has been kind to this movie, as eleven years later it remains a very solid beginning for the film franchise. Hell, it kicked off the career of Hugh Jackman, and really kick started the whole comic book movie trend. I really love the Professor X/Magneto relationship for what screen time that didn’t have Wolverine hogging it up. Patrick Stewart and Ian McKellen brought those two characters to life better than I could have ever imagined. While number two is the best of all the X-Men movies, this is still a very good and highly entertaining movie.
Number 6. – Titan A.E.
Don Bluth is no stranger when it comes to animation films. .There are quotes and comments out there that compare this to Star Wars. This is not Star Wars, but it really is one of the closer films to it. You will recognize some of the concepts in here where Bluth is able to create a great sci-fi film with a pretty good story. Planet Earth is no more and you have a crew made up of various species looking for a missing ship that will save humanity. The plot alone is enough for me to give this a watch. The run time is only 90 minutes and it will fly by rather quickly. The quick pace, action scenes, and a couple plot twists in the second half will keep you in the film. The characters are nothing spectacular, but the spacecraft and settings are nicely done. What would a sci-fi movie be without an enemy alien race? In here, they are known as the Drej and their leader looks fantastic. The sound effects are another great element of this film. The laser shots and the ship’s engines all make the surround sound worth hearing. The soundtrack isn’t too shabby either. The original score is nice and so are most of the songs done by the recognizable artists. Titan A.E. may seem like a typical science fiction cartoon, but there is more to it than meets the eye. This is a great film for sci-fi fans.
Number 5. – Cast Away
Robert Zemeckis and Tom Hanks collaborate once again here to make another great drama film. Cast Away is a fairly simple story, a guy working for Fed Ex gets involved in a plane crash, survives then gets caught on an island. Cast Away is a simple drama film that succeeds on many levels. Tom Hanks is able to make the seeming boring plot into something entertaining. Cast Away is a well acted film with a strong cast, a good story and good directing. Zemeckis crafts a film that leaves the viewer questioning what will happen next. The film is never dull because it always leaves the question of what will happen to its main character lingering. Theres a good dose of drama here as we see Tom Hanks character trying to keep his mental state intact. Cast Away is a well done film and what I love the most about the film is the fact that used one actor for pretty much the whole movie, and they made it entertaining. I thought the toned down cast was terrific. There really isn’t that many actors in this film, and the fact that Tom Hanks has 2 hours of screen to himself amd makes it work is terrific. Cast Away is a superb film thats very well acted by Hanks and is fairly entertaining as well. Cast Away is not a film for everyone, but if you enjoy Tom Hanks, then you should give this one a look. A very well done film thats very good, despite its simplistic plot.
Number 4. – Snatch
The first 30 minutes or so were very hard to follow, there are a lot of characters, but once everyone is introduced and the story unfolds, the film is nothing but pure entertainment. Guy Ritchie’s characters are eccentric and colorful. The highlight of the film is Brad Pitt as the face talking Gypsy, Mickey O’Neil.The film contains a great dose of comedy combined with effective traditional gangster film elements. Snatch is a totally new breed of gangster film. Guy Ritchie has created a memorable film that will most likely stick with you long after you’ve initially seen it. The characters in this film are eccentric and hilarious. Like I said, the key performance here is Brad Pitt, but Vinnie Jones as Bullet Tooth Tony, Denius Farina as Avi and Alan Ford as Brick Top all deliver something phenomenal on screen. Snatch has been dismissed by many, but there is a great film to be found here. With an awesome cast at hand, Guy Ritchie has delivered something unique for the gangster genre. Ritchie’s script is infectious with quotable dialogue, and will definitely make you laugh. Thats one of the reasons why this film is so much fun, it takes itself serious enough, but theres always room for slapstick moments that makes you laugh. This is definitely the most memorable gangster films since Reservoir Dogs and Pulp Fiction. Snatch is a blazing work of originality and is a refreshing take on a classic genre.
Number 3. – Battle Royale
I look at this movie as the modern-day Lord of the Flies and it exceeds on the violence of human nature. This piece of cinema is about a teacher named Kitano puts all the students in his class in the Battle Royale project by governmental force. This is where all the students in this project are all abandoned in a desert island, controlled by the military, only for the students to slaughter each other till the last man standing within three days. Once the students enters the deserted island, there is no hope for them because they are all implanted with a necklace bomb that will explode if they try remove it, tries to leave the island, or if the students don’t all kill each other in time. They are given backpacks with enough food for to last three days and are given their weapon of choice. Throughout this movie, we were giving enough time to see how the relationship of each other and how do each of them react to violent situations such as this. In these times were we are at danger, it shows our colors and in Battle Royale’s case, it was able to show how different we are as survivors; cowardly, blood thirsty, selfish, desperate, friendly, hateful, thinkers, willful, or hopeless. It may not be the most violent film, but you will see emotional violence like you’ve never seen before because this film adds so many dimensions on how can a single person to be forced to kill the people he/she trusted and without any combat experience and also at times face those who are experienced with slaughtering others (the transfer students). Casual viewers may look at this film as just nothing but gore and violence, but it’s not because it’s a great representation on what is it like to be forced to kill the ones you care about in a matter of time as it demonstrates how Japanese feels about survival. I really like how this movie didn’t make many of the side characters to be nonexistent, like how other action flicks kill off side characters, but instead, if any of the students dies their name is briefly shown showing who they were and to have the military to announce who’s dead. It’s a really thrilling movie and makes you think what if you were in that situation. It really is amazing to see what it’s like having to kill your friends, enemies, and acquaintances. This is a world were adult punish minors for their lack of respect for their elders and This to me was a groundbreaking achievement in foreign film history because it managed to clearly represent how serious the suicide rates are in Japan in which the world needs to know.
Number 2. – Memento
Memento is one of those films that you need to rewatch again and again to truly get. This is an innovative thriller that you need to keep close attention to its story or else you’ll lose track of what’s going on. Brilliantly acted by Guy Pearce, this is a stunning piece of cinema that showed early potential of what was to come from Christopher Nolan. The film is multilayered and the plot it has plenty of twists from start to finish. Nolan delivers a solid film, and it is one film to keep you on the edge of your seat till the very end. There are some great performances ere alongside that of Guy Pearce. Memento he shows hints of early brilliance that would be most apparent in his later films. Memento’s brilliance is in the strong performances and script, and Nolan’s effective directing. This is a near flawless film that requires multiple viewings. If you love a film that has many plot twists and keeps you guessing from start to finish, this film is for you. Memento is a solidly crafted film that has a terrific plot and is supported by a great cast of talented actors. This is one Christopher Nolan’s earlier best works. A must see for Christopher Nolan fans. What I loved about the film was that it required devoting your entire attention and in turn you are totally absorbed by its plot and you try to make sense of what’s going on. A truly original film and a unique thriller.
Number 1. – Unbreakable
M. Night Shyamalan follows up The Sixth Sense with Unbreakable, a pretty good thriller. Unbreakable was made back when Shyamalan made good films. This is a well crafted and plotted film with a great cast. The main idea behind it in the first place is brilliant, what if Superman was real, he just didn’t know that he was Superman, and the incredible directing from Shyamalan takes it from being a run of the mill, average superhero movie to a journey into a character’s life. We meet David, a slightly depressed security guard whose marriage is on the verge of a complete breakdown and whose son is doing everything he can to get his dad’s attention and keep his parents together. The opening train sequence is basically the film in a nutshell, managing to show David’s growing depression and the fact that his marriage is obviously not working and is a great introduction to the film. There are great slow moments in which we can see deep into the characters themselves and moments which get the heart going a little faster. The fact that David’s first fight is against one drunk man who pushes him off the balcony, causing him to almost drown in the pool cover, almost manages to make the whole concept of superheroes a little more believable. The only bad note for the film is the fact that it never quite progresses above a certain level of excitement, a level of excitement which is yearned for throughout the film. So many people seem to say the “twist ending” of this film is perfunctory, or there for the sake of being shocking, but I totally disagree in this case. I think, just like the turn in Sixth Sense, it’s so obvious that you kick yourself for not realizing it, and it makes the film far stronger. You see so much more of Elijah Price on a second viewing. His story is much more tragic and disturbing, and his desperation to prove to David that he’s right about him is so much more compelling. It adds that much more depth to an already practically movie-stealing performance by Samuel Jackson. Probably the best performance of his career, if you ask me.