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My Top 10 Favorite Movies of 2011

February 3, 2012

I am not especially interested in dramas or well-acted period pieces. I do not want to claim the movies on this list are really the “best.” These are movies that I think were the most enjoyable or important for one reason or another.

1. Insidious

Perhaps the best ghost movie I’ve ever seen. (The Legend of Hell House from 1973 comes in a close second.) The story was much much better than I expected and I found the movie to be very creepy and original. (See trailer here.)

2. Cowboys & Aliens

This movie was exactly what I wanted it to be — the best movie that pits cowboys against aliens ever made. (Yes, there are more.) I liked the characters and the story was enjoyable despite being a bit predictable. This isn’t a movie to be taken seriously. Enjoy the insanity. (See trailer here.)

3. Real Steel

I expected nothing from Real Steel, but it was much better than I expected. The most important factor is the characters. I liked them despite their flaws, and despite how silly the movie is. Yes, it’s very silly and it takes itself very seriously. That’s what makes this movie awesome. (See trailer here.)

4. Super

Remember how Kick Ass was about people who wanted to be real superheroes? Same  idea here, but a bit more realistic. This movie was a mixture of taking itself seriously and being quite silly at the same time. It was a lot of fun. (See trailer here.)

5. Your Highness

There’s not a lot of movies to make fun of the fantasy adventure genre (Lord of the Rings, Dungeons and Dragons, etc.) Krod Mandoon and the Flaming Sword of Fire was a great TV show that did it well. Your Highness is a bit of a mixed bag, but it was still quite fun overall. It wasn’t a masterpiece, but it should be seen by people interested in this sort of thing. (See trailer here.)

6. Apollo 18

Apollo 18 is about the secret NASA mission to the Moon, and it was almost exactly what I expected it to be. The Moon is awesome. People going to the Moon is awesome. The movie did what it was supposed to do and had an incredibly good ambiance involving the extreme isolation and danger of space. (See trailer here.)

7. Drive

Drive was a good 80’s-style adventure movie about a criminal who is betrayed by his comrades and must fight to survive. And he does it quite well… for the most part. (See trailer here.)

8. Paranormal Activity 3

The first Paranormal Activity was the most realistic ghost movie ever made. The sequels have sacrificed some plausibility for more action and scares. And that’s probably a good thing. The result was very enjoyable. It’s not the most realistic movie possible, but it doesn’t need to be. (See trailer here.)

9. Warrior

A movie about fighters (not boxers) who want to win the championship, and two brothers both make it to the final round. This movie was very well acted, had likable characters, the story was good, the drama was good, the action was good. (See trailer here.)

10. Adjustment Bureau

The Twilight-Zone-like movie of the year. It was very strange. Bureaucrats are in charge of the universe and try to assure that free will doesn’t cause any problems, but one man doesn’t appreciate that fact and fights back. This movie was well-acted, had likable characters, and a good story. It’s a bit silly if you think about it too much, so don’t. Just enjoy it.  (See trailer here.)

Honorable Mentions:

  • Paul
  • Super 8
  • Source Code
  • X-Men First Class
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