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12.13.2007

Ten Best Movies List

Let me begin by saying this list only comprises major motion pictures that were released in the United States. But even saying that rings hollow, as I didn't take nearly as many solid chances with my film-viewing this year as I should have. And, I didn't see a lot of the great stuff that I wanted to, for various reasons. Somehow I didn't catch American Gangster, No Country for Old Men, Michael Clayton or Eastern Promises. So take this list for what it's worth.

Number Ten: Live Free or Die Hard is a guilty pleasure. What can I say? I love Bruce Willis and I've always been a huge fan of the series. And I wasn't the least bit put off by McLane surfing an F-15.

Number Nine: Beowulf was better than I thought it would be and I liked the storytelling and effects. If this is the future of films (and it's not) then we could do worse.

Number Eight: Zodiac is an excellent investigation of obsession and depravity. It works well as a slow-building procedural and the chemistry between Gyllenhall and Downey, Jr. makes it a very underrated film.

Number Seven: 28 Weeks Later was a nice little political allegory about segregation and life in times of conflict. A very solid sequel.

Number Six: Fido was just an interesting re-imagining of the brain-hungry zombie trope. I loved the satirical rendering of '50s-style America and the class consciousness of the haves (with lots of zombie servants) and the have-nots.

Number Five: Rescue Dawn just makes you want to cry at times. Someone get those guys a good meal! Herzog's steady hand and the combo of Zahn and Bale make this a must-see.

Number Four: The Host is a feel-good creature feature from South Korea that will warm your heart and make you smile. Excellent film.

Number Three: 300 is both visually stunning and masterfully plotted. I think it's at the top of the blue-screen film list.

Number Two: 3:10 to Yuma is so well written, played and filmed that it should just be called 1A. I put this one up there with The Unforgiven and Lonesome Dove.

Number One: The Lookout was a truly great film. Joseph Gordon-Levitt's performance shines, and the story is both heart-breaking and life-affirming. The caper at the center of this film builds well and the message at the center is one of redemption and hope. Take a look at this movie if you haven't yet.

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