Monday, February 20, 2012

My Favorite Films and Performances from 2011

I'm always hesitant to make year-end lists because I know that there always films I still need to watch that very well might qualify. Still, I did manage to catch more than seventy 2011 releases at the theater and on disc in the past 14 months, so I figured posting some favorites couldn't hurt. It strikes me that none of my favorites were nominated for Best-Picture this year (although I quite loved The Artist, Hugo, The Descendants and Moneyball), which perhaps explains why I have never been less excited about the Oscars. The list of films I still need to see is large and would included everything from The Tree of Life to Margaret to House of Pleasures to Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past Lives to The Skin I live In to 13 Assassins and I suspect a number of those titles might have ended up here. Perhaps some of those films might end up on my end of the decade list down the road...or not...only time will tell. For now, here are the films and performances, that were released here in the states in 2011, that moved me the most.


1. Drive (Nicolas Winding Refn)

2. Melancholia (Lars Von Trier)

3. The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (David Fincher)

4. Martha Marcy May Marlene (Sean Durkin)

5. Young Adult (Jason Reitman)

6. The Black Power MixTape 1967-1975 (Göran Olsson)

7. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2 (David Yates)

8. Mildred Pierce (Todd Haynes)

9. Hanna (Joe Wright)

10. Cracks (Jordan Scott)

11. Super 8 (J.J. Abrams)

Favorite Performance by an Actor:

1. John Hawkes in Martha Marcy May Marlene

Followed By:

2. Ryan Gosling in Drive

3. Gary Oldman in Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy

4. Jude Law in Contagion

5. Patton Oswalt in Young Adult

6. Paul Rudd in Our Idiot Brother

7. Robert Pattinson in Water For Elephants

8. John C. Reilly in Carnage

Favorite Performance by an Actress

1. Kirsten Dunst in Melancholia

Followed By:

2. Charlize Theron in Young Adult

3. Rooney Mara in The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo

4. Elizabeth Olsen in Martha Marcy May Marlene

5. Evan Rachel Wood in Mildred Pierce

6. Saoirse Ronan in Hanna

7. Eva Green in Cracks

8. Elle Fanning in Super 8



Ms. Tessa Klaren said...

Great post! When I went to see Melancholia it was sold out and Drive was the only other option. I went into it with no expectations, and it COMPLETELY blew me away, right from the neon pink opening credits and music. Months later, I'm still obsessing over it and finding new things to appreciate... If it's possible to be in love with a movie, I am in love with Drive. Sadly, Melancholia was a bit disappointing.

Lastyear said...

The Academy sure dropped the ball on Drive. Totally ignoring it and nominating the crapfest known as Extremely Loud... instead. Would have included Ben Kingsley as best supporting actor for Hugo.
My favorite films were Drive, Hugo and The Artist. Tree of Life has some brillant parts but also some major flaws-mainly the scenes with Sean Penn don't work for me. But Brad Pitt is great as the father.