When 'The Avengers,' Ben Affleck, and 'Damsels' are all runners-up, it's been a good year
Creepy kids: the gift that keeps on giving.
"Searching For Sugar Man"
The best hook in any documentary this year, and a payoff worth the effort.
"The House I Live In"
AKA "some cold hard truth about the way race and the drug war are inseparable."
Because you really should hear the story. It's that crazy.
"How To Survive A Plague"
This year's winner of the Honorary "Dear Zachary: Make You Cry Your Brains Out" Award.
Pure pulp, sleek and self-aware about its silliness, and worth it for Disney's new coolest Princess.
Speaking of Mars, Joaquin Phoenix beamed in his performance from there. Remarkable.
"Hit and Run"
Charming, funny, and now I have no choice but to fully endorse the relationship between Dax Shepard and Kristen Bell. Damn it.
Dispelling the myth that politics was ever a more civilized game is just one way this film excels.
"Beware Of Mr. Baker"
Rock and roll is full of assholes. Who knew?
"The Central Park Five"
"West Of Memphis"
Just in case you still think our justice system works.
"Wish You Were Here"
Just in case you were ever thinking of a vacation in Asia.
I love the big strange world Quentin Dupieux is building on film.
Anthology horror is always uneven, but the hits outweigh the misses here.
"John Dies At The End"
Surreal, silly, and oh-so-weird. We need more Coscarelli.
A smart film about just how gullible we all can be. The definition of "uncomfortable."
Strong performances anchor a simple story about the basic human need for intimacy.
A firm reminder that once you release a work of art, it belongs to the viewers and not the artist.
"28 Hotel Rooms"
Perhaps the first and only time I've been emotionally drawn in by a story of infidelity.
"The Hunger Games"
Just the way I like my dystopian futures, served with a side order of adorable movie-star-in-the-making.
"I Declare War"
Because kids aren't as innocent and cute as movies love to pretend.
Jamie Chung can act, and this harrowing story of how to survive the world of human trafficking lingers.
"The Do-Deca Pentathalon"
"Frankie Go Boom"
No one knows you better than your brother, and no one can drive you crazier.
"We Are Legion"
Even if I didn't think this was a solid documentary, I'd include it here because I am terrified of the wrath of Anonymous.
"Mr. Rogers & Me"
A moving, lovely look at one of the Best People Ever.
"The Five-Year Engagement"
Segel and Stoller view romantic comedies through a very specific filter, and it speaks to me.
Shirley McLaine and Jack Black make one of the year's most compelling couples, much to my surprise. Also… part Three of Matthew McConaughey's Best Year Ever.
I would have never drawn a line from Catholicism to reality TV, but this film makes it seem like the most obvious thing ever.
Good ol' fashioned hillbilly fun.
David Cronenberg's particular strain of sickness seems to have been passed along to his son quite nicely.
I've never seen the horrors of old age painted quite so ably, and I'm not sure I've ever seen the strength of love made so painful.