Top 10 films of 2011 and their Oscar chancesWritten by James A. Molnar | The Gold Knight | firstname.lastname@example.org
Taking a break from covering the Oscars, I sat down and figured out my favorite movies from 2011. While some movies are among the top contenders for Oscar gold, others are simply excellent films.
10. “Rango” : The animation is beautiful and the story is very good. The attention to detail is remarkable and it’s unlike any animated film I’ve seen this year. (Oscar possibility: Animated Feature, Sound Editing)
9. “The Ghost Writer”: This 2010 mysterious thrill ride is perfectly written, cast, scored and shot. Roman Polanski hits it out of the park. (No Oscar possibility; not eligible)
8. “Midnight in Paris”: Woody Allen creates an ephemeral experience of Paris and the classics. The dialogue and characters in the film are timeless. Literally. The choice of music is also perfect. (Possibility: Picture, Allen for Director, Original Screenplay, Art Direction)
7. “The Help”: This moving film has a superb cast, led by Emma Stone and Viola Davis. You may need some tissues. (Possibility: Picture, Davis for Actress, Jessica Chastain and Octavia Spencer for Supporting Actress, Adapted Screenplay, Art Direction, Costume Design, Original Song)
6. “Rise of the Planet of the Apes”: An unexpected and refreshing surprise in a lackluster summer. The animation of the apes, particularly their eyes, is breathtaking. (Possibility: Sound Mixing, Visual Effects)
5. “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows — Part 2”: A wonderful send-off to the series. Some of the best scenes and sequences of the series are in the final movie. (Possibility: Alan Rickman for Supporting Actor, Art Direction, Makeup, Original Score, Sound Editing, Visual Effects)
4. “Hugo”: Director Martin Scorsese has created a visual masterpiece. With a fantastical plot and superb cinematography, “Hugo” works magic on screen. Did I mention the splendiferous visuals? And who doesn’t love a movie set in Paris? (Possibility: Picture, Scorsese for Director, Adapted Screenplay, Art Direction, Cinematography, Costume Design, Film Editing, Original Score, Original Song, Visual Effects)
3. “The Descendants”: George Clooney gives us one of his most emotionally raw performances on the big screen. His on-screen daughter Shailene Woodley is perfect and the soundtrack perfectly blends the plot’s transitions with Hawaiian music. (Possibility: Picture, Alexander Payne for Director, Clooney for Actor, Woodley for Supporting Actress, Adapted Screenplay)
2. “Beginners”: A compelling story and cast with Ewan McGregor as the son of a dying man (Christopher Plummer) who came out of the closet at age 75. The film shows that life is a constant state of discovery and self-awakening. The editing is superb, with show-and-tell styling throughout that adds to the films quiet simplicity. (Possibility: Picture, Plummer for Supporting Actor, Original Screenplay, Editing)
1. “Super 8”: J.J. Abrams and Steven Spielberg. What else is there to say? This dynamic matchup is the perfect pairing for my favorite film of 2011, an homage to a classic extraterrestrial story and sci-fi fantasy. At the heart of the story is not an alien. It’s a young boy who’s lost his mother and a father struggling to be a parent. It’s about the personal connection between a boy, his father and his friends. (Possibility: Cinematography, Editing, Original Score, Sound Editing, Sound Mixing)
Nominations for the 84th Academy Awards will be announced Tuesday, Jan. 24 around 8:30 a.m.
Toledo Free Press Star Lead Designer James A. Molnar blogs about all things Oscar at TheGoldKnight.com.
Tags: 2011, Beginners, Film, George Clooney, Harry Potter, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, hugo, James A. Molnar, midnight in paris, Movies, Oscars, rango, Rise of the Planet of the Apes, Super 8, The Descendants, the ghost writer, The Gold Knight, the help, top 10, year in review