Monday, December 14, 2009

Rachael's Top Ten Movies of 2009

Hellooooo (oooo) (ooo) (ooooo)

I know it has been a while. I feel like I have started every post in the past year with that statement. I'm not going to make excuses about why I don't really blog anymore, sometimes you just lose interest, or mostly time (in my case). I'm glad I still have the option to get on this space and share some opinions once in a while, so don't worry -- Underrated will never be gone for good. Over the next week or so I'll be providing some top ten lists. I'm sure there are a ton of better ones out there, but if you care -- here's how I spent my last year.

Rachael's Top Ten Movies of 2009

1. An Education

With Carey Mulligan's brilliant performance + Nick Hornby's long-overdue first screenplay + one of the best soundtracks I've heard in a long time, An Education was an easy choice as my personal favorite of 2009.

2. Up
After 10 minutes, there were tears streaming down my face, but at the end I was cheering along. Providing a full scale of emotions in this wonderful Pixar film, Up is yet another sophisticated animated film that totally knocked me off my chair.

3. Inglorious Basterds
There really isn't a Tarantino movie I haven't liked, and this ambitious movie showed why I love this director so much. It was a heavy story to tell, but I don't think anyone could have done it so well -- the ending scene? I couldn't turn away as much as I wanted to!

4. (500) Days of Summer
I'm a total sucker for all things romantic comedy, but I like to see an effort in this easily repurposed genre for something truly unique. Thankfully (500) Days Of Summer was more charming than cheesy, and with many a fun tunes to boot.

5. The Fantastic Mr. Fox
I was a bit surprised when Wes Anderson announced he was making an animated film. Would kids get his type of humor? The answer was a huge YES for creating a classic kids tale in a way that anyone would feel part of the adventure.

6. The Hangover
Two words: Zach Galifinakis

7. Funny People
Many people panned this Judd Apatow flick, but I found it an ambitious attempt at expanding his audience. Sure, it wasn't perfect (the last 3rd of the film could have been cut down drastically) but I appreciate this ode to comedians and their complicated lives was sweet and real, and yet Mr. Apatow was smart not to stray too far from what made him famous.

8. Star Trek
It's a commonly known fact that I obsess about anything J.J. Abrams related, but I never was a total geek when it came to Star Trek...until now. This was everything I wanted this movie to be -- didn't take itself too serious and a ton of fun. Plus, it was fun to see some Felicity alums make cameos. Ah, J.J. You are my hero.

9. Where The Wild Things Are
While watching this film, there were times that I had to remind myself that I was in a movie theater and just watching a movie on the screen. I became so involved in Spike Jonze's world that I almost forgot this was just a story and this wasn't in fact real. It reminded me why I loved this book so much as a kid, and I wasn't at all disappointed by this fantastical film.

10. Away We Go
The plot itself wasn't anything spectacular, but the performances and feelings associated with this film really made it stand out. John Krasinski and Maya Rudolph were so subtle in their actions that it almost felt invasive to be part of their story line. And as great as the two of them were, it was really the supporting actors that became the stars -- I'll never look at Maggie Gyllanhaal the same way again.


Anonymous said...

Hey - didn't make it out to a lot of movies this year, but I'm really glad we saw 500 days of Summer, if only because buddy apparently owned every t-shirt from my youth, as my wife pointed out several times during the movie. The people behind us in the line-up were buying tickets for "Julia v. Julia" - but I think they were confused.

Looking forward to renting An Education and The Fantastic Mr. Fox for the kids.

-- Piers

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