Movies: Top 11 Films of 2011*.

Scream 4. For my money, which I forked out happily, Scream 4 was not only one of the best films of the year (for me, Bridesmaids was number one, followed closely by the fourth installment of the Woodsboro saga), but the best chapter of the franchise.

Bridesmaids. My other favourite movie of the year. While I’m happy that the rest of the world cottoned on to the brilliance of Bridesmaids, my only regret is that it’s not just my little secret.

Black Swan. It was the buzz of the 2011 Oscars for its lesbian scenes, portrayal of mental illness and the controversial partnership between choreographer Benjamin Millipied and star Natalie Portman.

The Lion King 3D. Who could resist the 3D reboot of one of Disney’s best loved animations? It also harkens back to the hand-drawn animation era, being one of the last before computer animated films like Toy Story and Finding Nemo took over.

The Muppets. Probably one of the most anticipated films of the year (in my household, at least!), I was lucky enough to see it in a preview screening early in December. Technically, it’s released in Australia later in January, however it was a Thanksgiving film in the U.S., so I’m sticking by that. A must see for any child at heart.

The Help. The Help really took me by surprise. In August, I saw a preview screening of the film advertised, and it piqued my interest. A few days later, I realised it was based on a book, and before I even had a chance to express interest in reading Kathryn Stockett’s novel, the movie was out in cinemas. I’m glad I didn’t read the book, because the movie was it for me. And for the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences, apparently!

Breaking Dawn. Breaking Yawn, more like it. While I was sorely disappointed by the first installment of the big screen adaptation of the final book in the Twilight Saga, it was one of the most highly anticipated and grossing films of the year.

X-Men: First Class. I’m not an X-Men fan, so I’m handing it over to my housemate, Eddie, who is:

“For a northern summer blockbuster, it asks a lot of questions about morality of the viewer: should you change or should society change? Is change through force acceptable? Throw in some incredible acting from Michael Fassbender and one of the greatest cameos of all time from Hugh Jackman and you have yourself a very smart popcorn film.”

New Years Eve. In the vein of He’s Just Not That Into You and Valentine’s Day, I’m a sucker for a celebrity-packed movie. While there’s not much of a story, and it’s more of an excuse to perve on the alleged chemistry between Lea Michele and Ashton Kutcher, it’s the perfect mind-numbing holiday movie.

Super 8. As the latest issue of Time magazine (review to come) notes, Super 8 was one of the more hyped movies of the year. While I quite enjoyed it, sadly, Super 8 didn’t live up to its expectations.

Green Lantern. It was the year of green. Kermit’s return in The Muppets, and Ryan Reynolds’ turn as Hal Jordan. Looking back, the film was a bit of a flop in my eyes, but it did set the scene for one of the most talked about hookups of the year: Reynolds and Blake Lively.

What were your top films of 2011?

*Blanket spoiler alert.

Related: Scream 4 Review.

Bridesmaids Review.

The Help Review.

Breaking Dawn: Sex is Bad, Okay? And You Will Be Punished for Having it with a Life-Sucking Vampire Foetus. Sorry, Life-Sucking Vampire BABY!

Super 8 Review.

Green Lantern Review.

Movie Review: The Help*.

 

Up until I heard about The Help’s release as a movie a month or two ago, I’d managed to miss all the brouhaha surrounding the release of Kathryn Stockett’s 2009 novel of the same name, and therefore didn’t even know it was previously released in book form.

I promptly jumped online to devour the racial criticisms on blogs of the book, and so was expecting a similarly clichéd film.

Much to my delight, the film manages to steer clear of most of these stereotypes, though in some parts, such as Minny miraculously deciding to take her five or six kids and leave her abusive husband, and the standing ovation the local black church gives to Aibileen and Minnie, who defied the social norms of the time and told their stories as undervalued and blatantly discriminated against “help” to Emma Stone’s Skeeter, are pretty unrealistic.

But Jessica Chastain’s Celia Foote, the naïve, Marilyn Monroe-esque housewife outcast from the social scene in Jackson by fellow stay-at-home wife Hilly Holbrook, played wonderfully by Bryce Dallas Howard, stole the show. She showed that not all white people felt disdain towards the black “underclass”, making them use a specially-installed outside bathroom and take separate taxis, which is one of the main driving plotlines of the story.

I can’t talk this film up enough. While it’s not the best movie ever made, it’s one you should see regardless. Also, look out for cameos by Private Practice’s Dell and True Blood’s Lafayette and Sarah Newlin. And make sure to bring the tissue box!

*It has come to my attention that I give away too much in my movie reviews, so the asterisk will now serve as a blanket *spoiler alert* from now on.

Image via YouTube.