So I’m just going to talk about Shawn Levy’s list.
First off, Shawn Levy has seen 2463 movies in the past decade! Yikes! I like movies, but I don’t think I could hack being a movie critic.
Okay, he starts with Lord of the Rings, which I liked, okay, especially for someone who has never been able to read the books, but that third movie was so darn long that it sort of dragged down the whole trilogy. But then, his next pick is Far from Heaven, which was a movie I loved, not just for the costumes, which were fabulous–so many fantastic coats alone–but for the excellent acting brought by all parts. This movie is totally overlooked, and I’m guessing many men didn’t see it, but I loved it and I love him for putting it second in the decade.
Other things I love in his top ten:
The Lives of Others. Because then you get to discuss the directing and say the director’s name, Floren Henckel von Donnersmark, which is totally fun to say. Plus: most of the movie is a guy listening through headphones. Could have been incredibly boring, but instead wonderfully gripping.
Memento. Yes! It gave me a headache I was concentrating so hard!
Angels in America. Mormons! Angels! Al Pacino portraying an evil man! Emma Thompson! Meryl Streep in the dowdiest haircut ever! Heartbreaking and fantastic all at once.
Disagreement: Waking Life. Interesting in concept, but I was bored.
Still to see: The Best of Youth, The Motorcycle Diaries.
We are in agreement: An Education. Perfect, just as he says. Once and Before Sunset. Both movies that say so much in a limited amount of time. Before Sunset has the distinction of being one of the happiest surprises in my adult life. Really! The Incredibles. An incredibly funny film that also is animated.
The rest of 11-20 I’ve not seen.
21-25: No Country for Old Men. Mesmerizing. So good I had a random conversation with a stranger at a bus stop.
The rest of the 25:
Amelie. Yep. Delightful.
Billy Elliot. Also set in Europe and delightful.
O Brother, Where Art Thou? Incredibly fun to watch. Sort of a cackling-with-delight movie. This was also the movie where I realized George Clooney isn’t afraid to make himself funny looking.
The Queen. Tension filled, in an extremely low-key way.
The Royal Tennenbaums. I hate to think this might be Wes Anderson at his greatest, but it might be.
Shaun of the Dead. Funny, scary and gives hope to all the sad-sacks.