I never found Batman very interesting and found myself wondering why so many people loved him. But when Christopher Nolan took over the Batman films I immediately became a fan. Batman Begins was great, but The Dark Knight is an improvement in every way. I feel this is the comic book film to rule them all and really puts them on the map with other movies you'd see getting nominated for awards. Plus, Heath Ledger's performance is incredible.
Just as The Dark Knight really pushed forward comic book films, I felt Wall-E opened the door for animated ones. Andrew Stanton, the man behind Finding Nemo, crafts this tale of a trash compactor robot who goes on an amazing adventure. At its core Wall-E a romance, and I was astounded at how much I cared for these characters who barely even talk. This is probably the most charming movie I've ever seen.
I've always loved Martin Scorsese's work, and The Departed is yet another success for the legendary director. The movie features excellent performances all around, plenty of violence and suspense, and an ending that will have you saying "Whoa!". Vintage Scorsese.
This was the feel good movie of 2008 and easily the best one. That's not to say that there aren't some intense scenes; in fact, the movie starts out with a torture sequence. But you can't help but root for the characters and the whole premise of the movie is genius. I'm sure Regis Philbin thought this movie was awesome too.
This movie features the single most inventive way of telling a story that I've ever seen. Memento starts out at the end of the story and works its way backwards. This is because the main character, Leonard, suffers from amnesia. So he must take notes and pictures to help keep him on track in his quest to find out his wife's killer. When you think about it, the audience knows as much about what happened as does Leonard.
The story of John Nash, Nobel Prize winner, is one of both a genius and a schizophrenic. Nash is extremely gifted but he's troubled by people who he takes as real. The film features excellent performances by Russell Crowe and Jennifer Connelly and the story is riveting. There's certainly nothing flashy or revolutionary about A Beautiful Mind, but it doesn't have a weak spot.
Hayao Miyazaki knows how to make imaginative animated films, and Spirited Away is his best. We follow the main character Chihiro through a world of strange creatures, magic, and even giant babies! Something that creative could only come from Miyazaki's mind.
This is pure entertainment at its finest. I could go into detail about why this movie is so great, but all you need to know is that Russell Crowe is a complete badass in this movie. When Crowe yells to the coliseum crowd "Are you not entertained?!" try thinking of a cooler film moment.
This is the most outrageous and over-the-top movie I've ever seen. It's certainly not for everyone. This movie has easily offended many and even resulted in lawsuits. I personally find it to be one of the most hilarious films I've ever seen. The mix of scripted and unscripted events works perfectly, and Sacha Baron Cohen completely immerses himself into the role of Borat and doesn't let up for a second.