The best films of 2011: Robwrite's choices

The Best films of 2011

2011 has passed, and so it's time to look back on the year in films and take stock of the best that the movie industry had to offer us last year. This is my list of the best 15 films of 2011.

(**Note: I admit I haven't seen every film from 2011, so this is an incomplete list. I have yet to see The Artist and War Horse, both of which are getting Oscar buzz. Apologies to any worthy film I haven't seen which did not make the list.)


The Adventures of Tintin: A fun return to form for Spielberg, who reminds us why we loved him in the first place. This is a great adventure romp, with excellent use of motion-capture FX. Even if you’re not familiar with the comic book character of Tintin, this is still an entertaining ride. It’s one of the best action films of the year and likely the beginning of a new franchise for Spielberg.



Captain America: the First Avenger: Another of the year’s many comic-book based films and one of the most entertaining comic book adaptations of all. Chris Evans is perfect as the Red-White-Blue WW2 hero with the shield, battling the evil Red Skull. He’ll be appearing as the Captain again in the upcoming Avengers film.




The Descendants: George Clooney gives a wonderful performance in this dark comedy about a man who doesn’t appreciate what he’s got until his life starts falling apart. The Hawaiian setting makes it visually interesting and the performances are solid. This is a predicted Oscar favorite.



Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows-Part 2: The phenomenally popular Harry Potter franchise goes out with a bang, in this epic conclusion to the series. The strands of the 8-film long story (based on the incredibly popular books) are all tied together and Harry confronts his nemesis Lord Voltermort for the final time. A very exciting wrap-up to the series.




The Help: This little gem got a lot of Oscar buzz when it first came out but it seems to have been forgotten in the wake of newer films. However, it’s an excellent drama about race, following the relationship of a white woman and her black maids during the civil rights era.




Hugo: This has been the best-reviewed film of the year and is another likely Oscar nominee. Martin Scorsese steps out of his comfort zone to give us this excellent drama about a French orphan, which also serves as a homage to the early history of film and the value of the preservation of our American cinema.




The Ides of March: It’s a good year for George Clooney, who has two films with Oscar buzz this year. He doesn’t star in this one (although he does play a supporting role) but he does direct and he does a fine job with this tale of the corrupting affect that politics has on the soul of even the best intentioned people.




Martha, Marcie May, Marlene: A quiet little film that has gone mostly under-the-radar and received little (if any) buzz. But it’s a very unusual and well-made film, with an excellent performance by the previously unknown third Olsen sister, Elisabeth, who puts her older sister to shame.




Midnight in Paris: Woody Allen made a comeback with his best film in years, which became the biggest financial success he ever had. The plot of the movie was kept quiet and most people didn’t know going in what they were in store for, but few were disappointed because the film delivers not only the traditional witty Woody dialogue, it also has a poignant message about feeling satisfied where you are rather than waxing rhapsodic about the past.





The Muppets: The biggest comeback of the year was not by Steven Spielberg or Woody Allen, but rather by those irresistible creations of the late, great Jim Henson. The Muppets are back in rare form, in one of their best films ever. It’s the best family film of the year.




My Week with Marilyn: Anchored by a great performance from Michele Williams, this (supposedly) true anecdote about a young man who spends a week in the company of screen sex-Goddess Marilyn Monroe is a touching, entertaining treat.




Rango: Possibly (arguably) the best film of 2011 and one of the most visually unique movies to come along in years. This CGI animated tale of a lizard becoming the sheriff of a desert town pays homage to the classic westerns of yesteryear. The film is full of clever references to classic movies. In a year when Johnny Depp made several films, his best work was the voice-over for this imaginative masterpiece.




Rise of the Planet of the Apes: A worthy reinvention of the classic Planet of the Apes franchise, with the best motion-capture acting performance ever by Andy Serkis, who shines as the simian savior Caesar. The effects are amazing and the story is very interesting and engrossing. Let’s hope the sequel is as good.



Tree of Life: A bizarre yet highly intellectual film which tries to discuss the meaning of life (from the beginning of time through modern times) by examining the life of a single person as a microcosm of everything! This is a very experimental film and it will seem very odd to many people who don’t appreciate unusual, out-of-the-box cinema like this one.




X-Men: 1st class: Another excellent comic book adaptation in a year replete with them. This one is a prequel to the popular X-men franchise and cleverly uses real historic events as part of the plot. Good performances and strong FX highlight the action.


(*BONUS-edit: I'm adding THE ARTIST to the list. I didn't see it in time to make this list but now that I have, it definitely belongs here.)




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Comments 24 comments

CarltheCritic1291 profile image

CarltheCritic1291 4 years ago

Many great movies on this list (I too haven't seen them all but those that I have seen are on the list and that's good enough for me.) Keep up the Great work, Voted Up, Awesome, and Interesting


Robwrite profile image

Robwrite 4 years ago from Bay Ridge Brooklyn NY Author

Hi Carl; I still want to see 'War Horse' but these 15 will have to do for now.

Good to hear from you. Thanks for reading,

Rob


FloraBreenRobison profile image

FloraBreenRobison 4 years ago

Thanks for this list. The films about classic Hollywood era interest me the most.


Robwrite profile image

Robwrite 4 years ago from Bay Ridge Brooklyn NY Author

Hi Flora; You'd like "Hugo" because it's a nice homage to the history of film. Also, "Rango" has a lot of references to classic films that a film buff like you would porbably get.

Thanks for reading,

Rob


Stevennix2001 profile image

Stevennix2001 4 years ago

Quite an impressive list you have here, but are these listed in ascending order of condescending order? Or were these movies listed in no particular order, as you were just listing your favorite moves that you've seen this year thus far. I only ask out of curiosity purposes. Other than that, I like your list. Like you, I haven't seen all the films of last year either, as i can name a few films on your list that I haven't seen yet. Anyway, great work as always.


Robwrite profile image

Robwrite 4 years ago from Bay Ridge Brooklyn NY Author

I Steve; These were listed Alphabetically. My favorite (and I think the best) was "Rango". I hope to see all the films which get an oscar nomination before the award ceremonies take place.

Thanks for reading,

Rob


Stevennix2001 profile image

Stevennix2001 4 years ago

that's cool. were you planning on doing an oscar prediction hub this year by any chance? I only ask because i was going to start working on mine once the nominees are out, and i would love to link your oscar hub to mine if that's okay.


Robwrite profile image

Robwrite 4 years ago from Bay Ridge Brooklyn NY Author

Yeah, I'm going to give my predictions as soon as the nominees are announced. Its a great idea to link them.

Rob


tschaunerb profile image

tschaunerb 4 years ago from Medicine Hat

I have seen all of these, although i don't fully agree with your list- thx for posting.


Robwrite profile image

Robwrite 4 years ago from Bay Ridge Brooklyn NY Author

Hi; I know everyone won't agree with my choices but thanks for reading, anyway.

Rob.


Indigital 4 years ago

I loved 'A week with Marilyn' and obviously the ending to Harry Potter, I found Planet of the Apes dull though.


carolinemd21 profile image

carolinemd21 4 years ago from Close to Heaven

Great hub Rob. Love the movies you picked.


Robwrite profile image

Robwrite 4 years ago from Bay Ridge Brooklyn NY Author

Hi indigital; Thanks for stopping by my hub,

Rob


Robwrite profile image

Robwrite 4 years ago from Bay Ridge Brooklyn NY Author

Hi Caroline; Glad you agree. Good to hear from you.

Thanks for commenting,

Rob


Cogerson profile image

Cogerson 4 years ago from Virginia

I have only seen two of the movies(Captain America and Rango) on your list, but I want to see all of them with the exception of The Muppets and The Descendants. I was surprised when the Golden Globe nominations came out....and it seemed like the list of Best Picture nominees was pretty weak....but you do have many of those nominees on your list. Voted up and interesting.


Robwrite profile image

Robwrite 4 years ago from Bay Ridge Brooklyn NY Author

Hi Bruce; Well, this year wasn't exactly 1939, but some of the films were pretty good, like "Hugo". I know you're not a Clooney fan, so I guess you won't be seeing "Descendants" but give the "Muppets" a chance.

Always god to hear from you,

Rob


rednickle profile image

rednickle 4 years ago from New Brunswick Canada

I have to admit that i don't totally agree with this list especially with the inclusion of the Muppet and the adventure of Tintin. Moreover M.I 4 and Sherlock Holmes : A Game of Shadows are not part of this list.

Peace!!


Robwrite profile image

Robwrite 4 years ago from Bay Ridge Brooklyn NY Author

Rednickle; Well, then, we disagree. I don't expect everyone to agree with my choices. Just like I wouldn't agree with "MI" and "Sherlock Holmes" as two of the best of the year. Its a subjective list.

Rob


Hello, hello, profile image

Hello, hello, 4 years ago from London, UK

You definitely made a good choice. I have seen many of them myself.


Robwrite profile image

Robwrite 4 years ago from Bay Ridge Brooklyn NY Author

Hi H.H.; I'd like to add "The artist" to the list, since I just saw it and it's an amazing film.

Thanks for reading.

Rob


epigramman profile image

epigramman 4 years ago

...where you know where this is going Sir Rob - on my Facebook page with a direct link back here with pride and prejudice - lol - and you write better films than REX REED, EBERT AND SISKEL, PAULINE KAEL and COGERSON put together - lol lol lol lol

lake erie time ontario canada 6:39am


Robwrite profile image

Robwrite 4 years ago from Bay Ridge Brooklyn NY Author

Hi Colin; Thank you for the very generous compliment. Those are some excellent writers. I'm honored to be among such esteemed company.

Thank you for another link and another kind comment,

Rob


Vinaya Ghimire profile image

Vinaya Ghimire 4 years ago from Nepal

I have seen most of the films on your list. Tree of Life is my favorite one. I also loved Harry Potter.


Robwrite profile image

Robwrite 4 years ago from Bay Ridge Brooklyn NY Author

Hi; "Tree of Life" was very odd but interesting. Intellectual and abstract. It was very original.

Thanks for the comments,

Rob

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