vIndianz.com (27 Dec, 2009) — The year was not so great for movies. There were some good movies, there were some that turned out better than expected, there were some overly-hyped movies and there were some disasters. Box office results showed that visuals alone could not save movie, as proved by 2012, and slapstick comedy didn’t elicit any laughs for movies such as Couples Retreat. Even Tom Hanks couldn’t save a movie like Angels and Demons.
Though audiences and critics can never agree on a completely similar list, there are some movies, which find a place in both. We are trying to compile such a comprehensive list of the 30 best movies of 2009.
1. Up in the Air
The George Clooney-starrer managed to capture the sentiments of the average American in its entirety amid the economic recessions. Directed by Jason Reitman, the film showcased stellar performances, wit and an underlying message.
2. Still Walking
An excellent Japanese family drama by writer-director Hirokazu Kore-eda. A family reunites for the death anniversary of a son and the old tensions and issues crop up in the short span that they are together. Compelling, moving and heart-wrenching.
3. The Hurt Locker
One of the most hard-hitting movies ever on war, this Kathryn Bigelow directed movie showed the tumultuous situation in an army camp in Iraq. It follows the story of an US EOD team. Jeremy Renner, Anthony Mackie and Brian Geraghty starred.
4. The Beaches of Agnes
For those of you who like documentary movies, this one will be a treat. This is a look into celebrated filmmaker Agnes Varda’s life and her memories.
5. Goodbye Solo
Ramin Bahrani directs this movie about a Senegalese taxi driver who befriends an old man about to commit suicide, intending to talk him out of it. Souleymane Sy Savane and Red West star.
6. The Messenger
A moving tale about war heroes. The film starred Ben Foster as a war-scarred sergeant who on his return from the battlefield is put on duty in the casualty notifications department. Oren Moverman directed this brilliant dramatic masterpiece.
One of the most entertaining animations flicks ever made, Up said the story of a 76-year-old man and a young boy who fly to South America in a floating house. The movie produced by Pixar Animation Studio featured the voices of Edward Asner, Christopher Plummer and Jordan Nagai.
8. A Serious Man
It is about a Jewish professor in the 1970s trying to keep the fabric of his family from falling apart. A dark comedy directed by Joel and Ethan Coen, the movie starred Michael Stuhlbarg, Richard Kind and Sari Wagner Lennick.
An artist’s life which never flowered. The movie showed this aspect along with the relationship between her and an art collector, who met at different junctions of life. Martin Provost directed this moving French-Belgian movie starring Yolande Moreau and Ulrich Tukur.
The magic of Alice in Wonderland was almost recreated by this Henry Selick directed animation movie. Dakota Fanning, Teri Hatcher and Robert Baily Jr starred.
Tulpan had a wide release in April 2009. While it was already a favorite of the critics, the audience also accepted it well. Sergey Dvortsevoy directed this Kazakh movie about a soldier who returns to be a herdsman and the woman he marries.
A Japanese animated film, Ponyo is the story of a little gold fish who wants to become a little girl after she meets the 5-year-old boy Sosuke. Studio Ghibli created this movie, which had Noah Cyrus, Frankie Jonas, Tina Fey, Matt Damon, Liam Neeson and Cate Blanchett lending their voices to the English version.
Though you may know what the end of the movie is, you won’t mind the predictability a bit as you sit through this heartwarming movie. Morgan Freeman and Matt Damon take the movie to even greater heights with their performances. Clint Eastwood directs.
14. A Single Man
In this movie, all you would see was Colin Firth. It would be surprising if he doesn’t get an Oscar nomination for this one. Tom Ford directed this movie, a peek into the life of a gay man in 1960s America.
15. The Hangover
A bachelor party goes horribly wrong, in the most humorous way. The Todd Phillips movie was a surprise success and starred Bradley Cooper, Ed Helma, Justin Bartha, Heather Graham and the brilliant Zach Galifianakis.
16. Inglourious Basterds
Quentin Tarantino returned with crisp dialogues, gory action and gripping storyline. Exploring two simultaneous attempts to kill Hitler, the movie kept the adrenaline pumping from start to finish. Christoph Waltz stole the show with his impeccable performance.
17. Paranormal Activity
The movie premiered in 2007 but got a theatrical release only this year after it spooked Steven Spielberg enough to fund a remake. Oren Peli directed this seemingly real movie.
18. Star Trek
The 11th movie in the star Trek series, this J J Abrams movie excelled in technology and emotions. A gripping storyline was the highlight of the movie starring Chris Pine, Zachary Quinto, Leonard Nimoy, Karl Uban, Zoe Saldana and Eric Bana.
19. Away we go
Sam Mendes’ family drama took the characters played by John Krasinski and Maya Rudolph to many parts of the world in an effort to choose the right place to settle down. As with his other movies, Mendes keeps the drama high.
20. I love you Man
A young prospective groom, who has never had any male friends, tries to hire a best man for his wedding. The misunderstandings and the incidents that follow make up the story. John Hamburg directed Paul Rudd, Jason Segel and Rashida Jones in the film.
21. The Road
Set in a post-apocalyptic world, a father and son are moving towards the shore in search of supplies and survivors, if any. Joe Penhall directed this gripping tale starring Viggo Mortensen and Kodi Smit-McPhee.
22. An Education
A movie tracing the growing up of a schoolgirl into a sensible young lade, aware of what is right and wrong. This simple but effective movie was directed by Lone Scherfig and starred Carey Mulligan and Peter Saarsgard.
23. The Bad Lieutenant Port of Call New Orleans
Though not a remake of the 1992 Abel Ferrara movie, it derived the lead character and the theme from the earlier movie. Nicolas Cage played the Bad Lieutenant with enough conviction to garner widely positive reviews.
24. In the Loop
The Amanda Iannucci movie talked about politics and war. It was political satire on the thinking of the men in power of the effectiveness or otherwise of launching an offensive in the Middle East. Tom Hollander and James Gandolfini led the cast.
The much-awaited James Cameron 3-D movie has just released to an eager audience. Sam Worthington and Zoe Saldana star in this flick set in 2154.
A fast-paced action-packed movie about a former CIA operative trying to rescue his daughter from sex slave traders. Liam Neeson and Maggie Grace starred in this movie directed by Pierre Morel.
27. Public Enemies
A high action thriller directed by Michael Mann. A brilliant performance by Johnny Depp was the highlight of the movie which also starred Christian Bale and Marion Cotillard.
28. Whip It!
Drew Barrymore turned director with this movie, which also saw the return of the talented Ellen Page after Juno. A young girl who finds her heart in the rolling derby made enough fodder for a complete entertainer.
29. Mystery Team
A team of school kids, who were known to solve petty mysteries in school, team up to solve a murder mystery to prove it to themselves and the town. Created by the comedy group Derrick Comedy, some of whom star in the movie.
30. Drag me to Hell
A curse cast on a bank officer by a gypsy woman drags her to hell. It managed to scare the audience and received positive reviews generally. Sam Raimi directed the horror flick that starred Alison Lohman, Lorna Raver and Justin Long.Further Reading
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- Priyadarshan signs deal with Percept
- This Week’s Cover: JJ Abrams and Steven Spielberg talk ‘Super 8′ – Entertainment Weekly
- Twins Sequel to Reunite Arnold Schwarzenegger and Danny DeVito? – MovieWeb
- Shahid Kapoor shows off new dance moves
- Hindi Horror Film, ‘Siski’ at London’s Film Festival
- 10 Spookiest Movies You Will Dare not Watch Alone
- ‘Avatar,’ ‘Hurt Locker’ square off
- Lewis: Lehman repo scheme similar to campy movie – Denver Post
- Kites wows US, to hit theatres worldwide on May 21