Parisville

2011 FILM FAVOURITES: #1-7 (totally cheating)

Okay, here’s the deal. I have been delaying my top 7 (top 8 really, because I am REALLY cheating) films of the year not because I’m procrastinating or I’ve been still deliberating or whatever. These eight films have been set for ages. I’ve known exactly how I was gonna lay them out. The issue is more that when I write about these movies, I’m gonna have to list why I love them so much. And that’s a problem. I know I make hyperbole my thing and even though I’ve had this blog for less than a few weeks, that’s become more than apparent. However these eight films have had a significant impact on me and are really, really, really, really personal that I can’t even begin to talk about them without welling up. Therefore, I’m just gonna list them and if I can bring myself to write something, then I will. Though I probably will end up just posting them without saying anything really. 2011 has been really special for me. Films from 2007, 1996, 2000, yeah those have all been the years that I’ve really cherished being around for, but 2011 has….really taken the cake. This year alone, there have been eight movies released that I will proudly list amongst my all-time favourites for the rest of my life. And here they are. No words necessary. Their value can’t be restricted to language.

#7. Beginners

My heart grew five times its size after seeing this film. Not sure that’s healthy, but it’s made me quite happy.

Also, I’ve adopted Arthur.

#6. A Dangerous Method

David Cronenberg, huge influence. Huge influence. I can’t elaborate. Cronenberg. If I ever make a film, the only director I could equate with the type of filmmaking I’d like to do is David Cronenberg. Keira Knightley’s performance is criminally underrated that just even thinking about it for a moment raises the hairs on the back of my neck. It’s a stylized, over-the-top performance that so brilliantly reflects her character’s psychosis. The film is bathed in beauty. It’s flawless. I won’t even stand for a negative thought being said about it. If you do have something bad to say, or even slightly critical, get off of my blog now and never speak to me again in your life. Goodnight.

#5. The Artist

I’m a silent film junkie. I never thought I’d live to see the day where I’d have the opportunity to see a proper silent film being made, and on top of that, finding the critical and financial success that this film has had. That’s a beautiful thing. And if you’ve seen the film, you know exactly why audiences in the twenty-first century have grown to love it. Yes, in this day and age, audiences DO want to see something like The Artist. Thank god. This movie and its entire cast and crew deserve all its success and THEN some. Your face will hurt from smiling and giggling so much, I promise.

#4. Attack the Block

The creative team. You know who they are? Director/writer Joe Cornish, producers Nira Park, James Wilson, executive producer Edgar Wright. They’re a part of that crew I told you about before. I’m not gonna elaborate. I’ve been such a diehard fan of these people for more than half of my life. This movie already was an automatic favorite with me before I even got to see it.

And it bloody well should be. Seeing Attack the Block in theaters gave me dramatic flashbacks to how wee ol’ Paris felt in 2004 when she saw a little film called Shaun of the Dead in theaters for the first time. At the time, I knew that the person who was responsible for making that film was going to change my life, and he absolutely has. Edgar has single-handedly introduced me to films, television shows, people, I would have never heard of before and has shaped my personality wholly because of it. One of those people has been the great Joe Cornish, who I came to love as half of British comedy double act, Adam and Joe. For several years, Adam Buxton and Joe Cornish have written some truly genius sketches and now present a wonderful radio show on BBC 6 Music. Their brand of humour is entirely original and laugh-out-loud funny. Joe’s definitely let this spill into his directing because Attack the Block has got some hysterical one-liners (“This is too much madness to explain in one text!” “Man, you swear too much.” “It’s a big room, filled with weed. And it’s Ron’s.”) This is Joe’s directorial debut, and my god, I haven’t felt this strongly about a director’s first film SINCE Edgar. This movie is bliss. Believe, bruv.

(Also Luke Treadaway, oh my god, swoon forever)

#3. Midnight in Paris

Okay, I don’t know who you think you are, but if you think Woody Allen hasn’t made a good film in decades, then you’re clearly on something. Woody Allen is incapable of making bad movies. However, to prove the naysayers wrong, Woody decided to release this masterpiece this year.

This movie. is. me. This movie is me. This movie is me. I am Gil Pender. Gil Pender is me. I was practically mouthing along with the words the first time I even saw the film because I so deeply understand where his character is coming from. I have so much to learn from this. Midnight in Paris has become a sacred text for me.

“I see….rhinoceros.”

#2. Hugo

I HAVE SO MANY EMOTIONS AND I DO NOT KNOW THE BEST WAY TO DEAL WITH THEM.

I LOVE MOVIES, I LOVE MOVIES, I LOVE MOVIES, I LOVE EVERYTHING THEY’VE EVER DONE FOR ME

#1. (TIE) The Adventures of Tintin: Secret of the Unicorn/Drive

Yeah, bitch, I’m doing a tie. Originally, I was not going to cop out and do this, however my friend April brilliantly covered this issue in her own top 10 list and I think she really hit the nail on the head. I refuse to go in-depth as to what’s great about these movies because 1) it should be obvious or you’re an idiot (not apologizing) and 2) I’ve talked about it enough and 3) I will babble like a baby because I don’t know worrrrrdddssssss.

Basically to summarize April’s point that I 100% agree with is that these two films represent two really different sides of me but not one is more important than the other. Both films fuel me artistically, though they cater to different personalities. Drive is a film for my intellect, really. It’s a film that I go to as a viewer. This film has ruined me. Nothing can live up to its flawlessness. The story is not even that depressing, but after I saw the film the first time, I called everyone I knew and told them how I couldn’t stop sobbing because I’ve never seen a more beautifully shot film in a theater like that before. The impact of the cinematography in this film has AFFECTED me to my fucking core. Like, affected me. It’s become a problem. Hours of my life gone, just me getting lost in those frames…

Oh god, fucking Drive. Can somebody help me try to explain this one? Nicolas Winding Refn has become my new favourite auteur. Just like that, don’t even fucking care. Yep. Sorry, Darren Aronofsky. You’ve been replaced. I’M SORRY, BUT TO HAVE DIRECTED A FILM LIKE THIS, YOU CAN NOT POSSIBLY BE HUMAN, IT IS TOO BLOODY PERFECT AND YES, PUN INTENDED. And now I’m gonna go listen to Cliff Martinez’s score soundtrack until my ear drums give up, bye.

Tintin, on the otherhand, encompasses everything I have ever loved about movies from my childhood and on and what has inspired me to get involved in the business. It’s not just an insanely well put together film (a tight adaptive screenplay, insane technological appeal, a score that makes my heartbeat increase tenfold, etc), but it’s just pure bliss. It’s the perfect, good old fashioned adventure we’ve been waiting years for. This movie just wants to put a smile on your face. Please, just let it. The people that have made this film possible are just generally the greatest humans. Spielberg, Jackson, Wright, Cornish, Moffat, Williams, Kaminski, Bell, Serkis, Craig, Pegg, Frost, Jones, etc. They don’t even need first names. They’re legends in my eyes. Oh, and can we just mention the chase scene in Bagghar? ALL THE AWARDS. ALL THE AWARDS. HERE ARE ALL THE AWARDS AND I HAVE PERSONALIZED THEM FOR THIS SCENE. MOVIE MAGIC, PEOPLE.

I really could never accurately bring up all the reasons why these two movies deserve to both be my number one favourite of the year. The list of reasons is endless. Every time I see either of them, I find a dozen more excuses to claim it as my favourite. All I know is I’ll never stop watching them. I could honestly not care less what anybody else’s opinion about these two films are. You can hate it, I don’t even care. Their importance to me will not change.

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