Welcome back to the round-up of my favourite things in 2011. I previously covered Television, and I’ve got Podcasts and Comics coming soon, but for now, these are the Movies I rated most highly last year.
Don’t agree with my picks? Maybe Simon’s Awards will be more to your taste.
Best Comedy – Bridesmaids
Bridesmaids was billed as a female counterpart to The Hangover, which had the opposite of the intended effect with me - although I was eventually talked into seeing it. While The Hangover was not much more than a vaguely amusing retread of the plot from Dude, Where’s My Car?, Bridesmaids is intelligently written and brilliantly directed with a series of standout performances.
As much as Kristen Wiig deserves the plaudits heaped on her for for outstanding portrayal of Annie in the film, both Melissa McCarthy and Rose Byrne also turn in some of the best comedy performances anywhere in 2011.
Throw in a likeable but weirdly out-of-place love interest played by The IT Crowd‘s Chris O’Dowd and you’re left with something unexpectedly special.
Best Comic Book Adaptation – Thor
There comes a time in adapting a superhero for the screen where the people behind it need to make a call on what aspects of the comic mythology are kept, and which are ditched for being too cheesy, silly or simply unsuitable for the screen.
Well it looks like Kennth Branagh said “screw that, we’re keeping ALL of it, ‘cos it’s ALL awesome” and as a result we get Frost Giants, Jotunheim, The Rainbow Bridge, Yggdrasil – all of it.
Best of all, between Hemsworth’s performance and the spot-on depiction of Mjolnir, Thor comes across like he’s stepped straight out of the pages of the comic.
Best Film – Attack The Block
Both a loving homage to John Carpenter’s late 70s output and yet fiercely original in its own right, Attack The Block is a massively assured debut from British comedian, podcaster and writer Joe Cornish.
For me this is probably the ultimate movie – dramatic, funny and action-packed with fantastically-realised monsters, but it’s also very thoughtful, with some beautifully understated performances (many from local kids with no prior acting experience), a watertight plot and a hugely impressive script.
Cornish is currently co-writing Edgar Wright’s Ant-Man screenplay, which must bode well for the Avenger’s introduction, but personally I’m much more excited for the day that Joe himself gets back behind the camera.