Tara Judah’s Top 10 Films of 2010

Tara Judah’s Top 10 Films of 2010.

As 2010 makes its inevitable march towards death (or rather, 2011), Quickflix critics Simon Miraudo, Tara Judah and Jess Lomas reflect on the year that was. Check out their individual selections for the best (and worst) films of a year that will be remembered by endless debates about spinning totems, fake street artists, faker actor-turned-rappers, and the extent to which we all wept at the end of Toy Story 3.

Tara Judah picks…

Honourable Mentions: The City of Your Final Destination, The King’s Speech, La Danse: The Paris Opera Ballet, Mademoiselle Chambon, Summer Coda.

Australia’s darling film of the year is every bit as good as everyone says it is. A gripping drama with outstanding performances across the board.

Not at all the fast-paced blockbuster I expected it to be, The American is a slow, meditative look at a conflicted man who no matter where he goes can never escape himself. Anton Corbijn is definitely an auteur on the up.

8. Shutter Island

A highly underrated film that is not at all about the surface “twist” and absolutely all about loss, memory and the difficulty of facing one’s own past. Beautifully rendered.

7. Please Give

Catherine Keener once again cements her place as queen of the contemporary American Indie flick. A wonderfully dry comedic look at privilege and social conscience.

This was one of the most pleasant surprises for me all year. It’s been an age since we’ve seen anything from director Lisa Cholodenko and I had wondered if she would ever again match the heights of High Art (1998). She exceeds them. Bringing queer cinema so successfully into the mainstream, Cholodenko’s film is not just entertaining but a turning point in the advancement of popular cinema and all I can say is: about bloody time.

It may not be the most multi-layered film of the year but damn is that dialogue good. Aaron Sorkin’s script is so fast-paced and witty that I had to see the film twice just to catch all the sly jokes I was laughing too loud to hear the first time round. Beautifully directed by David Fincher and finally proving that Jesse Eisenberg is more than a poor man’s Michael Cera, this film makes for awesome entertainment viewing indeed.

Opinions may well be divided here but I have to say Tron: Legacy has some of the most innovative and immersive use of 3D I have ever seen. Add to this the intense beauty of the neon hyper-unreal aesthetics and the awesome soundtrack by Daft Punk and you have yourself one hell of a visceral film experience.

Jacques Audiard (Read My Lips and The Beat That My Heart Skipped) yet again creates an intense dramatic thriller that constantly questions the difficulties involved in making ethical decisions when faced with harsh and confronting realities. Truly compelling filmmaking.

Watching this film is far from easy and for anyone who has made his or her way through a difficult relationship it is sure to strike a highly emotive chord. Strong central performances from Michelle Williams and Ryan Gosling, which are so intense and incredibly believable, carry this brilliant film to the heights of outstanding cinema.

As close to perfect as cinema gets. This film excels on so many levels; from the crisp quality of its sound to its striking cinematography and deeply affecting story that operates on so many levels including wonderful Freudian and religious undertones. Simply breathtaking.

Discuss: What were your favourite films of 2010?

One Response to “Tara Judah’s Top 10 Films of 2010”

  1. >Very interesting list. Feel annoyed that A Prophet didn't do anything for me when everybody else seems to have got so much out of it. Tempted to revisit it. Nice work!

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