I wanted to write a full version of all the lists of 2009, I really did. However, the prospect of a new blog project, the various school writing, a few other writing commitments, along with said lists created a logjam which resulted, because I am who I am, in my utter inability to write any of the above. I just couldn’t do it. Thus, to get the lists out into the blogosphere for the 2.5 people who care, here they are, albeit without the explanations and such for each film/book/cd/etc. I hope this alleviates some of the pressure and hopefully gets my mind-grapes juicy again.
If anyone is interested in conversation concerning the particulars of any or all of these various lists, I would LOVE to do that, so email me, or comment me, or show up at my house in a black van and throw a bag over my head.
As a side note to this post, I didn’t realize the movie Pontypool was actually released in ’09, and if I had it would have made it on just about every list I’ve compiled so far. Granted, that would have made the lists even more zombie centered, but in a year full of great zombie entertainment, Pontypool was my favorite of them all. Smart, small, tense and wildly original. For my money, Pontypool is legit. Good job, Canada.
On a similar note, I didn’t realize Away We Go came out this year as well, but let it be known I adored that film as well.
Now, on with the lists, and, as always, there is no particular order for a single one of them.
These are the films that exceeded my expectations the most. For some, I assumed I would hate them and really enjoyed them, for some, I thought I would like/love them and they still blew me away.
1. Drag Me To Hell
2. Star Trek
3. The Hangover
5. In The Loop
6. Julie & Julia
8. Inglourious Basterds
9. Extract (especially Ben Affleck)
10. Where The Wild Things Are
Honorable mention: Avatar, The Hurt Locker, Up in the Air
I was also going to do a ‘most disappointing list, but I decided there is enough negativity in the world, and I’m not sure what my list would accomplish. Thus, I burned it, and by ‘I burned it,’ I mean ‘it is still sitting in my notebook with my other lists but it didn’t make the blog.’
Best Scenes, Moments or Devices:
1. The pre-title moments of Star Trek – as I’ve written before, once the film’s title graced the screen in all its splendor, I turned to Emily and whispered “Holy shit that was fucking amazing.” It was love at first sight.
2. The marriage vignette at the beginning of Up – If someone gave me only 5 minutes to explain how remarkably gifted the Pixar folks are at storytelling, I would simply show them this vignette and leave it at that.
3. The howling of Where The Wild Things Are – I should probably write an entire post on this, the final howling is especially powerful for me.
4. Zombieland and the best cameo ever!
5. Dance scene in (500) Days of Summer
6. Having all the characters say ‘cuss’ instead of bad words in The Fantastic Mr. Fox... this is going to be a clustercuss for everyone.
7. Opening moments of Inglourious Basterds
8. The woman slowly waking up to zombies holding her insides in Dead Snow
9. The conclusion of Paper Heart
10. Every moment of Sam Rockwell’s performance in Moon
Franchise Installments of ’09 that make me most excited for the next one:
1. Sherlock Holmes
2. Star Trek
3. Harry Potter
Best Movies That Didn’t Come Out in ’09, That I Saw For The First Time:
2. Being John Malcovich
4. Let The Right One In
7. Kill Bill
8. The Shining
10. Rachel Getting Married
Honorable Mention: The Squid and the Whale, Milk, Alien, Sugar, Waltz with Bashir, Young Frankenstein, Joyeux Noel, Paris je t’aime
Favorite Video Games I Played in 2009:
1. Mass Effect
2. Assassin’s Creed II
3. Arkham Asylum
4. Gears of War 2
5. Marvel Ultimate Alliance 2
Favorite TV Shows I watched in 2009
3. True Blood
4. 30 Rock
5. Mad Men
My Favorite Albums Released in 2009
1. Muse – The Resistance
2. Mos Def – The Ecstatic
3. M. Ward – Hold Time
4. David Bazan – Curse Your Branches
5. Andrew Bird – Noble Beast
6. AC Newman – Get Guilty
7. Grizzly Bear- Veckatimest
8. The Decemberists – The Hazards of Love
9. Phoenix – Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix
10. St. Vincent – Actor
Best Books I Read in 2009:
1. Speaker for the Dead – Orson Scott Card
2. Fahrenheit 451 – Ray Bradbury
3. The Brothers K – David James Duncan
4. A Farewell to Arms – Ernest Hemingway
5. Slaughterhouse-Five – Kurt Vonnegut
6. Undergoing God – James Alison
7. The Old Man and the Sea – Ernest Hemingway
8. Jesus Wants To Save Christians: A Manifesto for a Church in Exile – Rob Bell & Dan Golden
9. The Giver – Lois Lowry
10. Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell – Susanna Clarke (even though I finished the last of this in 2010)