johnlink's 2010 movie review

I did this last year as well, and here I am again (on the same exact day of the year, no less) making my movie review for 2010.  Enter ye who dare…

Same disclaimers as last year: This list will be as organized as possible, but I am giving a warning in advance, that there will probably be a lot of information which seems mundane. And there may be errors, I’ll fix ‘em if I see ‘em.

This is NOT a list of movies of 2010 (though I will pick the best of what I saw). It is a list which considers the movies which I saw in 2010. This goes back as far as 1920, with a pair of silent films: THE LAST OF THE MOHICANS and THE CABINET OF DR. CALIGARI. Last year, I was embarrassed to have not seen any silent films all year long. I rectified that this year (thanks largely to TCM) by viewing six of them. Not great, but not too bad either. My goal for next year is to add some more documentaries to my list, as well as to see some of my all time favorites which have yet to appear on my list.

This list considers both films I have seen before, and those which are new to me. When it matters, I will differentiate these films. I think this is important to do because there is a difference between a movie you see fresh, and one which is known.

My rankings over the year work in a formula. I rank them on a scale from zero to ten as a ‘film’ (the thematic and filmmaking quality), ‘movie’ (pure entertainment factor), ‘acting’ (including casting issues and voice over work if it is an animate feature), and ‘writing’ (including adaptation issues). A film can also earn a bonus point or two for stand out areas such as its score or cinematography. Rarely, a movie will earn a negative bonus point for some egregious filmic problem.

My articles, all of which are available at, are formulaic.  The raw data is available upon request.

So, without further ado, JOHNLINK’S 2010 YEAR IN REVIEW:


N: Movie NEW to me;      PV: Movie I had PREVIOUSLY VIEWED

Previous year’s numbers follow this year’s numbers in paranthesis…

Number of films watched: 119  (110)

Number and percentage N:  85; 71%  (71; 65%)

Number and percentage PV: 34; 29% (39; 35%)

Number and percentage seen in the theater: 9; 8% (21; 19%)

Number and percentage of films from 1900s-1920s: 6; 5%  (0; 0%)

Number and percentage of films from 1930s: 4; 3%   (1; 0.9%)

Number and percentage of films from 1940s: 4; 3%   (3; 2.7%)

Number and percentage of films from 1950s: 4; 3%  (4; 3.6%)

Number and percentage of films from 1960s: 3; 2.5%  (2; 1.8%)

Number and percentage of films from 1970s: 2; 1.7%   (4; 3.6%)

Number and percentage of films from 1980s: 6; 5%  (9; 8.2%)

Number and percentage of films from 1990s: 17; 14% (16; 14.5%)

Number and percentage of films from 2000s: 72; 60%  (71; 64.5%)

Number and percentage of films from 2010: 11; 9%    (from 2009 last year: 19; 17%)

Most represented year: 2009: 26 films; 22%  (2008: 23 films; 21%)

Notes… Glad to have seen a higher percentage in the previous decades, and I hope to continue to grow that number. As someone who considers themselves well versed in major American film (quick, let me pat myself on the back here real fast) I’m need to keep seeing the classics. I have 80 plus years of filmmaking before I was born to catch up on!

Number and percentage of movies which spawned, or were, sequels: 30; 25%  (29; 26%)

Number and percentage of movies which were later remade: 11; 9%  (6; 5.4%)

Number and percentage of movies which were themselves remakes: 11; 9%   (9; 8.1%)

Number and percentage of movies viewed in 3D: 1; 0.8%  (3; 2.7%)

Number and percentage of non-English spoken films: 2; 1.7%  (2; 1.8%)
Number and percentage of animated films: 5; 4%   (7 ; 6.3%)

Number and percentage of documentaries: 4; 3.4%  (0; 0%)

Number and percentage of black and white films: 16; 13%   (7; 6.3%)

Notes: For the second year in a row, the foreign films number is embarrassing …  I’m not sure I’ll see anything in 3D next year. That phenomenon is beyond me… Some of the films in the ‘spawning a remake’ category haven’t actually had those remakes released yet, i.e. Red Dawn… The most recent B&W film I watched was Clerks (1994)…

Film which I most feel is ranked too low: Strange as it may seem, I am going to list The Prestige here, even though it is my number 8 film of the year overall. With scores of 8,8,10,9, I feel as though the film and movie scores both may end up higher on a second viewing. That, as well as Inception, are the main reasons I plan to revisit a number of films in 2011. Overall though, I don’t feel like I was too harsh on anything.

Film which I most feel is ranked too high: There are a number, on the other hand, which I may have been too kind to. Night Watch (7 overall) is one of those, and Where the Wild Things Are (6.5) is another. In fact, that last may be the one ranked too highly overall. That movie just didn’t strike a chord with me, and the fact that I have it sitting in the same spot as The Crazies remake, which I thought was much more well realized than I thought possible, bothers me.

New Film which most surprised me positively: A.I. Artificial Intelligence (8.5). I had heard such derogatory things about this film over the years. It really kept me from watching it for a long time. I’m not sure what people didn’t like, other than the fact that this is more Kubrick and less Spielberg.

New Film which most surprised me negatively: The Day The Earth Stood Still remake (3.75 overall). Though I could have gone with the Friday the 13th remake, the Jason films never were much in the way of great film. But the original TDTESS is so iconic, that the screw job that they did to it in 2008 was abhorrent.

PV Film which most surprised me positively: Home Alone (6.75). While many of the films I watched for a second (or more) time this year were already my favorites (i.e. Last of the Mohicans, LA Confidential), I was surprised to see just how well Home Alone has aged. Still a fun, joyful family film which is worth seeing again. I know I’ll be showing it to my son when he is old enough!

PV Film which most surprised me negatively: Shrek (4.75), on the other hand, has not aged well at all. Clunky and too contemporaneous to have a lasting impact, this entire series just feels like a reactionary flash in the pan which won’t have the longevity which the Pixar films will forever enjoy.

Average FILM score total: 5.43  (5.76)

Average FILM score N: 5.55 (5.72)

Average FILM score PV: 5.12  (5.85)

Average MOVIE score total: 7.02 (6.83)

Average MOVIE score N: 6.76 (6.28)

Average MOVIE score PV: 7.65 (7.82)

Average ACTING score total: 6.25  (6.20)

Average ACTING score N: 6.36  (6.18)

Average ACTING score PV: 5.97  (6.23)

Average WRITING score total: 5.56  (5.61)

Average WRITING score N: 5.46 (5.35)

Average WRITING score PV: 5.82 (6.08)

Total bonus points given (net): 25  (21)

Number and percentage of films given bonus points, including negative: 41; 34.5%  (29; 26%)

Average bonus point per movie: .21  (.19)

Most frequent reason for bonus: Cinematography (Music/Soundtrack)

Negative bonus points: 10 (5)

Notes: 4 films received 2 bonus points… Of the films which received a negative bonus point, the most egregious was the CGI in Wolverine. How does a sequel to a movie made a decade earlier, look ten times worse then the original? His claws got WORSE… The lowest ranked movie to receive a bonus point was PCU (a 4.75 overall). It received it for music… The most highly ranked film to get a negative bonus point was Romeo and Juliet (7) from 1936. It received it for fight choreography which really didn’t do anything right.

Best N FILM: 10: Shutter Island & A.I. Artificial Intelligence

Best PV FILM: 10: Last of the Mohicans (1992)

Best N MOVIE: 10: Adventures of Robin Hood; The Sting

Best PV MOVIE: 10: The Princess Bride; The Lion King; The Thing

Best N ACTING: 10: The Prestige; Syriana

Best PV ACTING: 9: Rob Roy; Last of the Mohicans; Lion King; Princess Bride; LA Confidential

Best N WRITING: 10: Inception; Shutter Island; (500) Days of Summer; Syriana

Best PV WRITING: 10: LA Confidential; Princess Bride


Worst N FILM: 2: Standing Still; Friday the 13th (2009); Hollow Man II; The Final Destination

Worst PV FILM: 2: Resident Evil

Worst N MOVIE: 4: The Final Destination; The Fourth Kind; Friday the 13th (2009); Standing Still; The Day the Earth Stood Still (2008); Farenheit 451; The Lord of the Flies; The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari

Worst PV MOVIE: 5; Matrix Revolutions

Worst N ACTING: 2: Standing Still; See No Evil

Worst PV ACTING: 2: Clerks

Worst N WRITING: 1: Standing Still; Friday the 13th (2009)

Worst PV WRITING: 3: Under Siege; Matrix Revolutions; Scooby-Doo

Note: Worst Movie ranking at all was 4, which surprised me. I didn’t see any movies this year which were unwatchable (unlike last year). Clearly, it’s easy to tell which are the worst films. Friday the 13th and Standing Still were pretty bad. this year.

Best N OVERALL: 9.5: Shutter Island

Best PV OVERALL: 9.5: The Last of the Mohicans (1992)

Worst N OVERALL: 2.25: Standing Still

Worst PV OVERALL: 4: Resident Evil

In terms of an overall top 5 (well, 6 since there was a tie), it went:

Mohicans and Shutter Island (both  9.5),

Syriana, Lion King, (500) Days of Summer, and Princess Bride (all 9.25)

Bottom 5 (expanded to 7 due to tie) were:

Standing Still (2.25),

The Final Destination and Friday the 13th (2.5);

Hollow Man II (3.25)

See No Evil, The Werewolf, and The Fourth Kind (3.5).

Resident Evil did alright, actually, finishing only 10th worst overall.

My top 3 of 2010: Shutter Island (9.5); Inception (9); Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1 (7.5)

I didn’t even see enough films in 2010 to give a worst of. Having a child will do that to you: No time in the movie theater. Following this (in the next day or too) will be my amended top 20 films and movies list, with only the films I’ve watched since starting this project in consideration.

~ by johnlink00 on January 2, 2011.

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