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Sunday, January 15, 2012

Thumbs Up and Thumbs Down in 2011

I apparently see waaaay too many movies.  But it's my vice. 
I'm lucky to have a great group of friends who join me a couple of times a month at the theater, a hubby who enjoys a movie date night, and two boys who like to see some of the latest kids movies.

In honor of tonight's Golden Globe Awards (which I doubt I'll stay up for), here are my Thumbs Up and Thumbs Down choices for this year.  And another group that didn't really make much of an impact on me, so I'm putting them in my "Eh" category.

Thumbs Up

Black Swan - While it got me with its creepy (I still don't get it) ending, I thought this was a great, well-done movie.

The King's Speech - what an awesome movie!  Loved the acting and the story. 

Water for Elephants - I realize I am alone in the statement but I think the movie was as good as the book, and that's pretty rare for me.

The Adjustment Bureau - This would have been a just-OK movie were it not for the lead actors.  I thought they did a fantastic job.

Bridesmaids - While I don't always love over-the-top movies, I did love Bridesmaids.  Every cringe-worthy scene.

Cars 2 - I loved it!  I know a lot of people didn't care for it as much as the original, but I thought it was great.

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2 - So well done.  A great send-off for this fantastic series.

Crazy, Stupid, Love - My favorite movie of 2011.  Great casting in this movie.  And speaking of Emma Stone...

The Help - Another movie that did the book justice.  The movie had that great mix of heart and humor.

The Ides of March - I really enjoyed this political suspense movie and Ryan Gosling stole the show.

Footloose - I don't remember the original that well except that it didn't make a huge impression on me.  I thought the remake was really well done. 

The Smurfs - We loved the Smurfs!  It's probably a combination of my childhood love for the adorable blue plastic guys, the fact that we had JUST returned from NYC where the movie takes place, and the leads were likable.

Larry Crowne - Wasn't sure going in how I would like this movie, but I really enjoyed it.  Tom Hanks is in a different kind of role and he does it really, really well.

Super 8 - A terrific sci-fi movie that was so well done.

Moneyball - Enjoyed watching this with David, who had read and liked the book.  It was a little slow in parts, but it was good.

We Bought a Zoo - I took the boys and their cousins to see this over Christmas and I just loved it.  It wasn't what I was necessarily expecting but I thought it was great.

Mission Impossible:  Ghost Protocol - I don't love everything that Tom Cruise does, but this was a really good movie.  Hard to believe he did almost all of his own stunts.

The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo - I believe if you read (and liked) the book, then you will agree that the movie really does it justice.  The acting is incredible and it felt very true to the book.

Kung Fu Panda 2 - It was OK.  Not very memorable.

Beginners - I really wanted to like this independent film but found myself rather bored by it.  I think Ewan MacGregor does a great job though.

The Rise of the Planet of the Apes - Wow, this movie was long and intense.  It was well-done, but not one of my favorites.

Arthur Christmas - I know I'll be boo'ed for this but I didn't absolutely love it like the rest of the world.  It was cute, but not that memorable.

Breaking Dawn Part 1 - There were scenes that I liked in this movie, and I thought it was the best acted of the series.  I wouldn't watch it again though, so it goes in my "OK" category.

Red Riding Hood - My friends and I were anxious for this movie to come out, but it didn't live up to our expectations.  While visually pretty stunning, I vaguely remember the plot.

Friends with Benefits - Another movie I wanted to love, but it was just OK.  The leads are likable enough but the story is a little over the top.

No Strings Attached - Another movie (that is almost identical to the one above) that I wanted to love.  It was rather predictable and slow.

What's Your Number - Oh the sweet chemistry saved this one from my Thumbs Down category.

Puss in Boots - Another one that I know I'll be boo'd for.  I thought the beginning was great, but then it got boring f.a.s.t. I was so disappointed!

 Rio - My boys loved this one but I barely recall the plot.  It didn't leave much of an impression on me.

Hop - I thought I would really enjoy this one but it was just OK.

Source Code - I really like Jake Gyllenhaal and love a good suspense/thriller.  This one was good but rather repetitive and anti-climactic.

Rango - I really liked the idea of this movie and wanted to love it but it got old really fast for me.  There are some great lines in the movie but just "ok" for me.

Gnomeo and Juliet - As silly as this movie sounds, I really wanted to like it and its Elton John musical numbers.  It was OK.

X-Men First Class - I watched this with David and thought it was pretty good but there are better superhero movies out there I think, but...

Green Lantern - This was not one of them.  Oh, it was OK but not that awesome.

Thumbs Down

 It's really hard for me not to appreciate something about every movie I see. 
I can only imagine the work that goes into pulling a movie together and I respect that creativity and passion. 
Having said that - there were some that really disappointed me this year.

Midnight in Paris - I really, really, really wanted to like this movie.  I didn't get to see it at our independent theater so was thrilled when it arrived from Netflix.  I didn't like it.  I like the premise (Owen Wilson meets up with great historical characters from the 1920s while he's visiting Paris), I like the actors, and I like Woody Allen usually.  But it just didn't work for me.  And I tried.

Spy Kids 4D in Aroma-Scope - a bad, bad movie.  Of course, Brennan loved it.

Our Idiot Brother - This movie had its moments, but overall I didn't care for it. 
These actors have done much better movies.

Cedar Rapids - I had never heard of this movie but a friend recommended it, and we must have very different senses of humor.  Salesmen go to a convention in Cedar Rapids and hilarity ensues.  I just didn't think it was that awesome.

Horrible Bosses - When we saw this in the theater, one of my friends was in hysterics.  I thought there were some funny moments, but it was just too over the top for me.  Jennifer Anniston playing against type was fun to see though.

New Years Eve - I could go on and on about how disappointing this movie was.  I really liked Valentine's Day but this one was really disappointing.  While it's funny to see characters playing against type - this one was ridiculous.  The acting was embarassing and the whole thing felt slapped together to me.  Oh, I was disappointed.

Take Me Home Tonight - another movie that I really wanted to like.  It was just shallow and strange.  Great 80s soundtrack though!

Bad Teacher - I don't know a soul who loved this movie.  Probably most didn't dislike it as much as I did but wow, this was bad.  I must say that Cameron Diaz was convincing in this role but I thought the movie was a huge let down.

Looking forward to seeing if any of my favorites take home Golden Globes tonight!

1 comment:

Ricki Jill Treleaven said...

I am not watching the Golden Globes because Mr. Art @ Home is getting ready to go on a one week business trip and I have had lots to do! I thought Crazy Stupid Love was fantastic, and it is my all time favorite romantic comedy. You have seen tons of movies that i have not seen....wow!

I also loved The Help, and I also agree that Water for Elephants was so well done....I think that August was eerily spot on! Both movies were close adaptations of the books.

Good job with this post!!! Impressive!