It turns out that my five-year standard diary makes it easy for me to make a list of top movies I saw in the last five years. There are 49 of them. This list consists of movies I saw for the first time during those five years. Some of them were not originally released during those five years, but I’m not Shawn Levy watching 2000+ movies in a decade and it takes me a while to see things. Sometimes decades. Movies I re-watched during those years, I did not include in this list. Thus, the movie I watched on 7/3/06, Drugstore Cowboy–one of my favorite movies ever–is disqualified because I watched it back in the 90s for the first time. Incidentally, the re-watching was even more fun because at that time I lived in Portland near the neighborhood it was filmed. At any rate, today’s entries:
Batman Begins. I’m a sucker for a good superhero movie, especially one that includes the origin story. This was fantastic. We will not speak of the unspeakable sequel which will not be making my list.
Anchorman. Poking fun at local TV news? An easy target. But so, so funny. There are many classic moments in this film. Will Ferrell is great, and the ensemble is a finely tuned comedy team.
The Aristocrats. From George Carlin’s opening smile post-joke, this movie which consists of an incredibly nasty joke told again and again was hilarious, despite its repetition. This also introduced Matt and I to Sarah Silverman (“Who was that?” we asked each other on the walk home.) I think Bob Sagat was perhaps my favorite version, but when George Carlin died a little while later, I remembered his smile from the movie which, more than anything, sold the joke.
Serenity. Everyone in my circle was all abuzz that this movie was coming out, so I was surprised when there was not a Harry Potter-esque line at the movie theater. In fact, the theater wasn’t even full, despite us going on opening weekend. A reminder that not everyone is as into Joss Whedon as my friends are. This was a fabulous stand-alone movie, which got better after I watched the series, which was also great.
Millions. A delightful story about a boy who finds a million pounds and his brother who talks to saints. Good to watch with kids and sweet-tempered grandparents who don’t like swearing.
Walk the Line. One of those movies I didn’t want to end, just because I enjoyed the performances so much.
Monster House. An animated movie I liked much more than I thought I would. And I thought I would like it a good amount. Funny and sweet and good to watch with the aforementioned children and sweet-tempered Grandparents.
Intolerable Cruelty. Some critics mark this as one of the Cohen brother’s weaker films, but I put it at the top of my list. So many funny characters, (Rex Rexworth! Wheezy Joe!) and plot twists. Plus, Heinz the Baron Krauss von Espy. (This is almost as much fun to say as Florian Henckel von Donnermark) I’m not Catherine Zeta-Jones’ biggest fan, but she was perfect for this role. I saw this and then took Matt to see it.
Little Miss Sunshine. Another movie that I saw and then took Matt to see. He laughed so hard, he actually fell off his seat. Managed to be incredibly dysfunctional, incredibly funny and incredibly sweet all at one time. I felt sorry for all the characters, yet felt incredibly protective of them. Do you know how hard that is to pull off?
Stranger Than Fiction. Jan and I traveled to the fancy new theater in Vancouver to check it out and see this movie. Seeing the theater was the true priority, the movie was secondary. Thus, I was surprised to find that two thirds of the way through the movie I was smiling so much my front teeth had dried out. Everyone in this film is delightful.