SmackAMack’s Blog

March 13, 2009

Top 10 Films 2008

Filed under: Uncategorized — smackamack @ 7:56 pm

Ok, finally I have seen most of the films of 2008 and have put together my top 10 list… I hope I didn’t forget one.  

The Reader

the-reader-posterPlot: Middle aged German barrister Michael Berg recollects to himself his lifelong acquaintance with Hanna Schmitz, a relationship with whom he never disclosed to anyone close to him. Michael first met Hanna in 1958, when he was fifteen, she thirty-six. The two had a turbulent summer long love affair, dictated by Hanna that their encounters would begin with him reading to her followed by lovemaking. Michael next encountered Hanna in 1966, when Michael, now a law student, attended the Nazi war crimes trial of five female former S.S. concentration camp guards, one of whom is Hanna. Through listening to the testimony, Michael comes to the realization that he is in possession of information which could save Hanna from a life in prison, information which she herself is unwilling to disclose. In deciding what to do, Michael is torn between his differing views of justice.  Directed by Stephen Daldry with Kate Winslet and Ralph Fiennes. 

 

Milk

milk-poster-sean-pennPlot: Upon moving to San Francisco from New York City in 1972, forty year old Harvey Milk gains focus in his life as a gay activist in the city’s Castro district. Gay rights activism turns to political activism as Milk decides he can be a more effective voice for the gay community as a politician, elected or not. Through several elections and losses both for a city seat and a state assembly seat, Milk becomes the first openly gay man in the United States to be elected to political office when he wins a San Francisco supervisor seat in 1977. His many political battlefronts include one with the national anti-gay Save the Children crusade, led and fronted by singer Anita Bryant. Closer to home, Milk has a continuing struggle with his fellow supervisor, Dan White, a staunch social conservative.  Directed by Gus Van Sant with Sean Penn and James Franco.

 

Slumdog Millionaire

slumdog_millionairePlot: The story of Jamal Malik, an 18 year-old orphan from the slums of Mumbai, who is about to experience the biggest day of his life. With the whole nation watching, he is just one question away from winning a staggering 20 million rupees on India’s “Who Wants To Be A Millionaire?” But when the show breaks for the night, police arrest him on suspicion of cheating; how could a street kid know so much? Desperate to prove his innocence, Jamal tells the story of his life in the slum where he and his brother grew up, of their adventures together on the road, of vicious encounters with local gangs, and of Latika, the girl he loved and lost. Each chapter of his story reveals the key to the answer to one of the game show’s questions. Each chapter of Jamal’s increasingly layered story reveals where he learned the answers to the show’s seemingly impossible quizzes. But one question remains a mystery: what is this young man with no apparent desire for riches really doing on the game show? When the new day dawns and Jamal returns to answer the final question, the Inspector and sixty million viewers are about to find out. At the heart of its storytelling lies the question of how anyone comes to know the things they know about life and love.  Directed by Danny Boyle

Wall-E

wall-e_poster2Plot: In a distant, but not so unrealistic future, where mankind has abandoned earth because it has become covered with trash from products sold by the powerful multi-national Buy N Large corporation, WALL-E, a garbage collecting robot has been left to clean up the mess. Mesmerized with trinkets of earth’s history and show tunes, WALL-E is alone on Earth except for a sprightly pet cockroach. One day, Eve, a sleek (and dangerous) reconnaissance robot, is sent to earth to find proof that life is once again sustainable. WALL-E falls in love with Eve. WALL-E rescues Eve from a dust storm and shows her a living plant he found amongst the rubble. Consistent with her “directive” Eve takes the plant and automatically enters a deactivated state except for a blinking green beacon. WALL-E, doesn’t understand what has happened to his new friend, but true to his love, he protects her from wind, rain, and lightening, even as she is unresponsive. One day a massive ship comes to reclaim Eve, but WALL-E, out of love or loneliness hitches a ride on the outside of the ship to rescue Eve. The ship arrives back at a large space cruise ship, which is carrying all of the humans who evacuated earth 700 years earlier. The people of earth ride around this space resort on hovering chairs which give them a constant feed of TV and video chatting. They drink all of their meals through a straw out of laziness and/or bone loss, and are all so fat that they can barely move. When the auto-pilot computer, acting on hastily given instructions sent many centuries before, tries to prevent the people of earth from returning, by stealing the plant, WALL-E, Eve, the portly captain, and a band of broken robots stage a mutiny.  Directed and written by Andrew Stanton.

 

I’ve Loved You So Long

120x160 I've loved you so longPlot: Juliette was 15 years in prison. Confronted with the unexpected goodness of her younger sister Léa, who makes Juliette a part of her family, very slowly breaks up the Juliette’s ice and bitterness and she carefully opens up.  Directed by Phillippe Claudel with Kristin Scott Thomas. 

 

 


 

In Bruges

2007-12-07-inbruges_posterPlot: The Irish hit-men Ken and Ray are sent by the Londoner mobster Harry Waters to the medieval Belgium city of Bruges in Christmas after an awry job in a London church. Ray bungles it. While Ken enjoys the historic city, Ray feels completely bored and misses his home. Ray meets the small time drug-dealer and crook Chloë, who sells drug to the cast and crew of a movie that is filmed in Bruges, and has an incident with a Canadian tourist and later with Chloë’s boyfriend. Meanwhile Harry, who has an stringent code of principles, gives Ken special orders. Directed by  Martin McDonagh with Colin Farrell and Ralph Fiennes.

 

The Duchess

duchess-poster-knightleyPlot: Georgiana Spencer became Duchess of Devonshire on her marriage to the Duke in 1774, at the height of the Georgian period, a period of fashion, decadence, and political change. Spirited and adored by the public at large she quickly found her marriage to be a disappointment, defined by her duty to produce a male heir and the Duke’s philandering and callous indifference to her. She befriends Lady Bess but finds she is once again betrayed by her husband who wields his power with the three eventually living uncomfortably together. Against this background, and with the pressures of an unfaithful husband,strict social pressures and constant public scrutiny, Georgiana falls passionately in love with Charles Grey, a rising young Whig politician. However, despite his ongoing liaison with Lady Bess, the Duke refuses to allow her to continue the affair and threatens to take her children from her.  Directed by Saul Dibb with Kiera Knightly and Ralph Fiennes. 

 

Doubt

doubt_posterPlot: Set at a Catholic school in the Bronx, it centers on a nun who grows suspicious when a priest begins taking too much interest in the life of a young black student. Is she being overly protective or not protective enough? And can she work within the system to discover the truth? Directed by John Patrick Shanley, with Meryl Streep and Philip Seymour Hoffman. 

 

 

 

 

Dark Knight

 

april-dark-knight-posterPlot: Batman raises the stakes in his bourgeois war on crime. With the help of Lieutenant Jim Gordon and District Attorney Harvey Dent, Batman sets out to dismantle the remaining criminal organizations that plague the city streets. The partnership proves to be effective, but they soon find themselves prey to a reign of chaos unleashed by a rising criminal mastermind known to the terrified citizens of Gotham as The Joker.  Directed by Christopher Nolan with Christian Bale, Heath Ledger, Aaron Eckhart etc. 

 

 

Man on Wire

300_334313Plot: On August 7, 1974, Philippe Petit, a French wire walker, juggler, and street performer days shy of his 25th birthday, spent 45 minutes walking, dancing, kneeling, and lying on a wire he and friends strung between the rooftops of the Twin Towers. Uses contemporary interviews, archival footage, and recreations to tell the story of his previous walks between towers of Notre Dame and of the Sydney Harbour Bridge, his passions and friendships, and the details of the night before the walk: getting cable into the towers, hiding from guards, and mounting the wire. It ends with observations of the profound changes the walk’s success brought to Philippe and those closest to him. Directed by James Marsh. 


Wow…3 of them have Ralph Fiennes…strange.  

Honerable Mentions:

405px-religulous_poster1

Religulous

 

 

20080718-mammamiaposter2

Mamma Mia!

 

 

ironmanposter3

Iron Man

 

 

towelhead-poster-bigTowelhead

 

 

marley-and-me-posterMarley and Me 

 

 

teeth_ver21

Teeth 

 

 

1805

Sex and the City

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2 Comments »

  1. Nice blog you have here. =)

    Comment by mel — March 17, 2009 @ 11:25 am | Reply

  2. Who is this? Thank you for the compliment!

    Comment by smackamack — March 17, 2009 @ 2:30 pm | Reply


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