Tuesday, July 6, 2010

In Which Michael5000 Asks: "Seen Any Good Movies Lately?"

The Great Movies

Well, that was it. Last week's review of Greed completed my three-year journey through Roger Ebert's list of "The Great Movies." One hundred films that the most prominent living American movie critic thinks especially important, overlooked, influential, or generally awesome, and I've watched them all.

As projects conceived of under the influence of alcohol go, this has been a highly productive and enlightening one. Certainly I know an awful lot more about movies, and the history of movies, than I did when I started the project. And importantly, I enjoyed it a lot.

I let Mr. Ebert know that I'd finished, and told him how much I enjoyed the project, but he has not been able to get back to me as of this writing. Well, he's a busy man.

"What Next?" You Ask

Some of you -- and I know who you are -- are probably of a mind to mention another book by Mr. Ebert, The Great Movies II, which as the title suggests is a list of 100 more of his favorite films. To you, I say: Forget it. Ain't gonna happen. But I will be happy to read your reviews regularly, should you choose to take on such a project. Just let me know.

What I want to do is remedy an interesting gap that has opened up in my knowledge of film history. That gap runs from September 2007, when I started watching Ebert's list, to the present. During that time, I've gone to almost no current movies. You can see how it happened, I think. I was too busy watching movies to go to the movies.

Here's the Part Where You Give Your Nominations

So here's the plan. You, the L&TM5K readers, will come up with another list -- let's call them "The Good Movies" -- from 2007 to the present. Nominate as many as you want in the comments. Assuming we get more than 10 nominations, we'll eventually have a vote to narrow it down to the 10 I'll watch.

So again, I'm looking for your nominations for the best movies, 2007-present. Go!


Elaine said...

Oh, dear. We haven't seen a 'new' movie in about 10 years. I read reviews, then think: 'I'd like to see that someday.'

Now I am also eagerly awaiting your suggestion list.

Cartophiliac said...


The Calico Cat said...


Nichim said...

As far as I can tell, I have seen eight movies released since 2007. I list them here with my recommendations as to whether you should watch them or not.
1. Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (2007) - Recommended only if you're watching the whole series.
2. Transformers (2007) - Not recommended.
3. Wall-E (2008) - Recommended.
4. Hellboy 2: The Golden Army (2008) - Recommended if you like superhero movies.
5. Sleep Dealer (2008) - Recommended. Written and directed by my high school sweetheart, Alex Rivera.
6. Avatar (2009) - Well, I didn't like it, but I suppose it might be an important cultural experience, or a good overview of raver aesthetics. You decide.
7. Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince (2009) - see #1
8. Star Trek (2009) - Recommended. I actually saw this twice in the theater.

Thom said...

In terms of major U.S. releases I'd say the best in that time frame are

Frost / Nixon
There Will Be Blood
No Country For Old Men

They get the top three places in the 'Hollywood releases' category for me easily.

Morgan said...

Here are the movies released from 2007-present that I fully recommend seeing.

Mr. Bean's Holiday - Hilarious!
Charlie Wilson's War - Historic!
WALL-E - This was actually quite amazing. Pixar is awesome.
The Dark Knight - This is actually a very good movie.
Valkyrie - Again, historic, but this time less strippers and more Hitler.
Watchmen - Awesomely disturbing and disturbingly awesome. It feels like it's about 4 hours long, because it's so emotionally heavy.
The Taking of Pelham 123 - John Travolta shoots people.
District 9 - Should have won Best Picture last year. Stupid Academy.

"Up" is another that is definitely worth watching, I think WALL-E is a better movie, though.

Avatar is worth skipping.

Kritkrat said...

The Dark Knight
Star Trek (2009)
The Hangover
Up in the Air
Food, Inc.

I don't recommend the Twilight movies, but I'd love to see you review them!

Jenners said...

The Hangover -- Freakin' hilarious and way way funnier than I thought it would be

Up in the Air -- Smart, funny and touching. A real "grown up" film like you hardly ever see anymore.

Juno -- Best movie about teen pregnancy ever!

Kung Fu Panda -- Fun!

Wall-E -- Beautifully done and touching and lovely and one of Pixar's best. The opening is perfection.

Iron Man -- Loved it ... totally enjoyable and kick-ass comic book adventure. Haven't seen 2 yet.

Tropic Thunder -- If you love Ben Stiller, then you'll love this. If you don't love Ben Stiller, it is worth it for Robert Downey Jr's performance. If that doesn't do it for you, then Tom Cruise's Les Grossman is worth the price of admission

Toy Story 3- Brilliant!

OK ... I realize I'm heavily weighted in comedy and kid's movies but I don't get out much!

UnwiseOwl said...

I don't know about actually good movies...but....
Frost / Nixon - Drama!
Iron Man - Explosions!
Up - Balloons!
Wall-E - Robots!
The Dark Knight - Batman!
Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs -Silliness!!
Star Trek - Alternate Realities!
Up in the Air - Airports!
Ratatouille - Animated Goodness!
The Curious Case of Benjamin Button - History!
Slumdog Millionaire - Not as good as the book, but kinda fun!

Elaine said...

OMG This means I DID see some semi-current movies.

Charlie Wilson's War....truly wonderful, and wonderfully true; just be prepared to have your heart broken at the end.

I saw the Frost-Nixon interviews, actually; need to see the film.

Daughter gave us WALL-E two yrs ago and we still haven't watched it. (She tried.) Must do, soon.

this is all helping me!!

Dr. Kenneth Noisewater said...

I love Roger Ebert, and believe it or not, he is the guy who got me into writing. I do, however, disagree with him from time to time, as I did on a movie I just watched for the first time, David Lynch's "Wild at Heart."

Check it out.

Dr. Kenneth Noisewater said...

Oh, I should clarify: He didn't like it, but Gene Siskel and I both thought it was a great love story and a great film.

Aviatrix said...

Avatar is only worth watching a) if you can see it in a theatre and you are really into special effects or b) you have a fetish for jaw-dropping horribleness in characterization and character motivation. No one undergoes any character development or displays any depth of character at all, but a couple of characters do bizarre things for no reason at all beyond plot expediency.

And yes, I second (third?) the request for you to watch twilight so we don't have to. I'd also like to watch Transformers 2, and review it as though it were a Rom Com.

The Calico Cat said...

Now that I have seen more answers, I can second:
No Country For Old Men
Charlie Wilson's War
Food, Inc.

KarmaSartre said...

District 9 (8)

Before the Devil Knows You're Dead (10)

Man on Wire (8)

Slumdog Millionaire (9)

Milk (7)

No Country for Old Men (7)

Lives of Others (10)

The Diving Bell and the Butterfly (9)

An Education (7)

The Hurt Locker (8)

Rachel Gets Married (7)

mrs.5000 said...

Of the ones we did see during that period, I think The Fall was my favorite. So I'll nominate to see that again, and recommend it as a lush, quirky and affecting spectacle, something like The Wizard of Oz as filmed by Akira Kurosawa in about thirty jawdropping locations. So why has no one heard of it?

Bridget said...

Before you dive into your next assignment, I just want you to pause and congratulate yourself on finishing one of your many self-imposed tasks!

Congratulations! There are many movies I feel no need to watch because of you.

That said, watch "Up" fer heaven's sake!

mrs.5000 said...

We did watch Up! We liked it. (Loved the series of flashbacks.) Also Wall-E, Coraline and The Fantastic Mr. Fox. We seem to have a much better chance of catching animated films.

Two I've heard about that I definitely want to see are Man on Wire and Up in the Air, so I'll second those nominations.

Michael5000 said...


Really, I finished a mammoth 3 1/2 year project and other Bridget B. says congrats? Where are your manners, people!??!

(That's mock outrage, of course)

Elaine said...

(Meekly) Congratulations, M5000.

I recently finished a quilt, but it was only a 2.5 yr project. It is 106" square, mixed piecing and applique, and if I had not sent it out to be hand-quilted, it might have been a 5 or 6 year project. (I have some of those, too.) So I understand The Slog.