Schubert. On Film.

The Brendan Ross Special

Posted in The Brendan Ross Special by schubertonfilm on February 5, 2010

Schubert. On Film is proud to present Peacock-award winning writer Brendan Ross. Take it away Brendan!

The Top 10 Movies of 2009 According to Me,

Brendan Ross!

10. Thirst (Chan-wook Park)

Yeah the whole vampire trend is getting out of hand, but it’s good to know that neat things can still be done with the genre.  My favourite movie of 2008 was Let the Right One In, and although this isn’t nearly as polished as that it is still one of the most unique and visually interesting horror films I’ve seen in some time.  I heard someone say Chan-wook Park is like a Korean David Fincher and I would say that’s pretty spot on.

9. District 9 (Neill Blomkamp)

I will admit I thought the movie lost some of it’s momentum towards the end, but this is still an incredibly smart and focused summer movie.  The effects were fantastic not even considering that the budget was only $40 million.  And considering that the budget was only $40 million, well, the effects were an even more enthusiastic synonym.  It would be so great to see this movie snatch up the technical Oscars over Avatar but, sigh, who am I kidding?

8. Moon (Duncan Jones)

I didn’t think this kind of science fiction filmmaking even existed anymore.  A complex and intricate plot that’s surprisingly easy to follow thanks to great storytelling, a classic directing style that uses models and practical effects, and a great lead performance holding it all together.  Sam Rockwell, who I’ve always thought is incredibly likeable, pulls in my second favourite performance of the year in what is essentially a one-man (two-man?) show.  The mere fact that he hasn’t gotten any recognition for this really proves the fact that the Oscars and especially the Golden Globes are a joke.

7. Where the Wild Things Are (Spike Jonze)

I’ve always said my favourite movies aren’t ones I necessarily consider to be the best, but that I can see myself re-watching the most.  This is a bit of an exception.  Of all the movies on this list, plus some that didn’t even make the list, I can see myself re-watching this one the least amount of times.  Don’t get me wrong, I do love this movie.  I think it’s the best looking movie of the year and the emotional response it got out of me was through the roof.  But more than anything I am just glad this movie exists and that it was made the way Jonze intended.  It’s an incredible achievement for an indie director making a studio film.  And since it even managed to make money (thanks hipsters!), the possibility exists that we might get to see more dark and scary children’s movies in the future.

6. The Hurt Locker (Kathryn Bigelow)

A chick-director making the tensest, baddassest, testosteroniest action movie of the year??  Getdafuckouttaheeah!  (I think I just broke my spell-check)  No really though.  It’s true.  This movie is ruthless.  It doesn’t give a shit about you or what you think an Iraq war movie should be.  There are no politics, no preachy messages, and no guilt-trips.  Just edge-of-your-seat intensity from the moment it starts until the moment it ends.  I swear to god, if Avatar wins best director over this I am going to club a baby seal.

We are now getting to the movies that I am passionate about to the extent that I would consider fighting anyone who has anything bad to say about them.  Just joking.  This is only IMHO, LOL.   But Seriously.  If you don’t like these next movies then we probably shouldn’t hang out.

5. World’s Greatest Dad (Bob Goldthwait)

So I… like… Robin Williams now?  Jesus.  I’m supposed to be the guy who hates Robin Williams.  I never for a moment considered that he would ever be in another movie that I would like.  But sadly, World’s Greatest Dad is an excellent movie and he is wonderful in it.  While watching him all I wanted to do was give the hairy oaf a big hug.  That aside, let’s talk about the movie itself.  Actually, let’s not.  It’s the kind of movie that to talk about it would be to lessen the experience so I’d rather just urge anyone who hasn’t seen it to refrain from reading anything about it and just watch it with an open mind and a clean slate.  I guarantee you it’s not what you think it’s going to be.

4. Drag Me to Hell (Sam Raimi)

I remember before Drag Me to Hell was released I read that it was going to be rated PG-13 and I pretty much gave up hope for a classic Sam Raimi horror movie.  Stupid!  Stupid!  Stupid!  Because that’s exactly what this was.  Classic Sam Raimi.  Welcome back, sir.  It’s been a pretty good year for really fun movies that give me that giddy feeling in the lower part of my stomach, and I’d say this one takes the cake.  I’ve never been bungee jumping before but I’d imagine it’s a similar experience in terms of that feeling you get in your gut.  Sometimes it even got to the point where those giddy feelings were happening so often that they started giving me cramps, and I felt like a kid at Chuck-E-Cheese who had to go home early as a result of being sick from too much running and cake eating.

3. Anvil: The Story of Anvil  (Sacha Gervaisi)

This story of a pair of aging knucklehead’s trying to stay relevant in the heavy metal scene is the most heartwarming thing I’ve seen since that youtube video of the sneezing panda scaring his mom.  I guess you can say it’s kind of like Spinal Tap meets Fubar (I wouldn’t but you can), except that it is a real documentary following real people.  Yeah they’re kind of dumb and yeah it’s funny to laugh at them, but I think I can confidently say that if you don’t feel your heart melting within the first 15 minutes then you have no soul.  What’s that?  Of course I’m not crying.  Just leave me alone.

2. Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call New Orleans (Werner Herzog)

And the award for Best Actor goes to… Nicolas Cage in Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call New Orleans!  Nicolas Cage approaches the podium waving a gun at the audience and says “you people are what’s wrong with the fucking world.  I should kill you right now!” and then proceeds to ask presenter Helen Mirren what kind of dope she has on her (…just watch the movie, ok?).  The best way for me to describe Bad Lieutenant is to say that it’s like an episode of NYPD Blue directed by Frank Booth while on happy pills.  Then again, Werner Herzog is probably just a more polite version of Frank Booth so there you go.  Never before have I seen such a collection of “holy shit what the fuck?” moments strung together in such a cohesive and likeable film.  Do not take your eyes off of Cage for a second.


  1. Inglourious Basterds (Quentin Tarantino)

Uh huh.  I know what you’re thinking.  I’m a movie nerd so obviously I love Quentin Tarantino.  Well how dare you judge me like that?  Goddammit I don’t even like Quentin Tarantino.  I think he’s obnoxious.  Any time there is an interview with him on TV I race for my remote to change the channel.  I do, however, like the man’s movies, and I am not ashamed of it.  This is a great fucking movie and is without a doubt his most original piece since Pulp Fiction.  Everything in this movie just does it for me.  The way it unites picture and music with each is seamless, the way the suspense builds and builds is almost unbearable to watch but impossible to look away, and of course, Christoph Waltz as the most well-conceived movie villain of recent memory.  Simply put, this is a movie that reminds me why I like movies.

Sidenote:  Is it just me or is Quentin Tarantino looking more and more like vampire makeup Richard Gecko in From Dusk Till Dawn?  Cocaine’s a hell of a drug, amiright?


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