127.  One Day

Lone Scherfig’s follow up to An Education tells the story of two people (Jim Sturgess and Anne Hathaway) and where they are in their lives by checking in on them one day a year.  It is an intriguing device, and I wonder if it is used to better effect in the novel.  I did kinda like some of the points the movie made and Jim Sturgess as an over the top TV presenter.  But ultimately it isn’t quite dramatic and not really comedic, occupying that unfortunate middle space between the two.

126.  Albert Nobbs

Glenn Close’s passion project that sees her playing a woman pretending to be a man.  I think there could have been something interesting here, but the story, like Close’s performance, is very subtle.  Which makes the ending pretty jarring.  Janet McTeer was surprisingly not in the movie for very long, but the scene with her and Close running on the beach was quite good.  I also admired the decision to make Mia Wasikowska’s character so unlikable.

125.  Shame

The movie that proves arthouse snobs are as pervy as the rest of us.  There’s a scene relatively early on in the movie where Carey Mulligan sings “New York, New York” at a nightclub while Michael Fassbender and his co-worker (or maybe boss, I forget) look on.  The scene is interminable, it feels like she sings the song for ten minutes.  I think the scene is a pretty good litmus test of how you’ll like the movie.  But anyway, the movie has great actors, stylish visuals, and the thinnest of plots effectively being used to illustrate a sex addiction.  So I could see how people would like it.  And Michael Fassbender is pretty fantastic.

124.  Kung Fu Panda 2

Good thing John isn’t reading these, otherwise I get the feeling he’d yell at me.  I just don’t understand why people like these movies.  They aren’t particularly fun or funny, and really forgettable.

123.  The Darkest Hour

I loved the premise of practically invisible aliens invading Earth and wiping out the bulk of the populace almost immediately, told through the viewpoint of five foreigners in Russia desperately trying to search for any other survivors.  But goodness gracious did the writing and directing try to eliminate as much emotion as possible.  It is stupefying to watch no one care about anything.  Because blog fav Olivia Thirlby is awesome, you could see her rebelling a little, going out on her own to add some emotion which somehow survived to the final cut.  The rest of the cast (Emile Hirsch, Max Mingella, Joel Kinnaman, Rachael Taylor) is pretty talented but similarly underutilized.

122.  The Roommate

This movie is exactly what you would expect it to be.  If you are expecting a by-the-numbers thriller.  Major props to whoever was in charge of casting for realizing that Leighton Meester and Minka Kelly do kinda look similar and for getting Aly Michalka and Nina Dobrev in the movie too.

121.  The Lincoln Lawyer

This Matthew McConaughey-starrer had a surprisingly favorable reception.  I’m not seeing it, but I tend to have pretty high standards when it comes to things resembling mysteries.  To me, the plot was half baked and reminiscent of every mystery-type show on TV.  I know they are developing this for TV, but it is hard to get excited when none of the characters are particularly memorable, even when inhabited by great actors.  Including Ryan Phillippe back to the sleazy rich guy type he’s so good at.

120.  The Green Lantern

What I most remember from this film is afterward, walking from the theater to Crumbs with Adam, spending the entire journey discussing everything that was logically and fundamentally wrong with the movie.  Delicious cupcakes, though.

119.  Romantics Anonymous

I’m sorry, something has to go terribly wrong for a movie about two painfully shy chocolatiers not to make my top ten.  The French film fall into that Gallic category of movies that are ostensibly romcoms but which I don’t think really contain much humor at all.  Which is unfortunate, because it is a pretty great premise, and there are a number of potentially amusing situations the characters find themselves in.

118.  Something Borrowed

I was perhaps unreasonably excited for this romantic comedy from the director of The Girl Next Door starring Ginnifer Goodwin, Kate Hudson, Colin Egglesfield, and John Krasinski.  To its credit, the film was very mature about a few points.  In most romantic comedies with a triangle, one person is clearly the “bad guy” and when the good pair finally hooks up, all is right and harmonious with the world.  In this movie, the good pair (Goodwin and Egglesfield) hook up midway through the film, but things aren’t instantly OK.  Even if two people are meant to be together, there are serious ramifications for one of the pair cheating on his soon-to-be wife to do so, along with lots of attendant guilt.  The problem is that you can’t address these messy situations and then superficially dismiss them.  It isn’t fair to talk about cheating and what true love means, only to have Kate Hudson (intriguingly playing against type) be so easy to hate and secretly have been cheating the whole time.  That’s lame romcom deus ex machina.  It also isn’t fair to have a movie about true love and longing only to have Krasinski declare his love for someone and then just decide, well, guess that subplot is done.  I still remain ever devoted to Goodwin, and casting Steve Howey and Ashley Williams in supporting roles is always a good call.

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