Retrospective – Film 2010

So, I had plans for a real fresh start this year but the post-Christmas, post-New Year, about-to-return-to-work blues have set in hard, so before going forward, I’m going to take a quick look back at 2010 starting with Film

So here’s my top 3 films, my ‘honourable mentions’ and my celluloid stinker of the year

#3 – It’s Kind of a Funny Story

A teen angst ‘..Cuckoo’s Nest’ channelling the spirit of John Hughes. A smart and funny comedy drama following Craig (United States of Tara’s Keir Gilchrist) a stressed and troubled teen who accidentally gets himself admitted to an adult psychiatric care unit and although it’s a typical ‘teen learns about himself through others’ story it just really drew me in through an interesting set of characters, a good script and excellent performances by the whole cast, but Zach Galifianakis gives a real stand out performance, reminding us that he has so much more talent that the comedy oddball seen in The Hangover and Due Date   

#2 – Catfish

“Don’t let anyone let you what it is” reads the strapline of the poster and is 100% correct. To discuss the content of this film in any way would ruin it – even watching the trailer or looking at the newest version of the film poster (I chose to use the original poster design for this reason) would be doing this film a disservice as both give you a completely different idea of the film to what you will actually get

I watched this film with no prior knowledge of its content and found one of the most engaging films of the year, which prompted more discussion than any other

Please, just watch it and make up your own mind!

#1 – Fish Story

When Japanese punk band Gekirin (Wrath) release their final song ‘Fish Story’ in 1975 could anyone have dreamed that this song may one day save the world from being destroyed by a comet?

Set across 4 decades, featuring punk, terrorists, a kung fu chef, demented priests, a planet killing comet and the catchiest non-english language theme song in history Fish Story asks the question “Can Punk save the World?”

Funny, typically quirky, Japanese film destined (I hope) to become a cult classic


Honourable Mentions

Winters Bone – a dark tale of a damaged family, set in the harsh and unforgiving Ozark Mountains, held together by the oldest daughter (a breakthrough performance from Jennifer Lawrence) searching for her missing father who has put their family home up against his bail before disappearing. Depressingly brilliant

Cold Fish – Shion Sono’s gory tale of how a charismatic tropical fish shop owner destroys the life and family of a timid rival. Based on a true story (although transplanted from Dog lovers to Fish lovers) it’s an engrossing dark film and it’s unflinchingly brutal last half hour may not be for everyone

Love Exposure – got time for a 4 hours modern Japanese epic? then this is the film for you! More WTF! movie making from Shion Sono


Celluliod Stinker

It would be impossible not to mention ‘Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Pt 1’ – A snore inducingly dull Carry on Camping for wizards, but the worst film of the year for me was……

Brighton Rock

An awful ‘re-imagining’ of the Richard Attenborough classic with almost no redeming features other than the excellent work done in transforming Eastbourne into a mods and rockers era Brighton

Considering the the cast includes such big names as Helen Mirren and John Hurt (both criminally underused to the point of John Hurt’s character being virtually redundant) it really is shocking bad in almost every sense

At the screening I attended the couple sat next to me were so bored they spent the rest of the film exporing each others underwear (classy!)  

Anyway, enough of my dry views and opinions – agree? disagree? let me know what your best and worst of 2010 were!

  1. Why are there three films that have fish in the title… something fishy is going on…

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