Best Movies of 2008

Sorry I haven’t blogged in so long. 

I was changing light bulbs.

So Richard Roeper, formerly of “Siskel  Ebert / Roeper At the Movies,” published his best and worst list for the year.

(By the way, have you seen the new “At the Movies?” Unwatchable. Really makes you want to punch a young person in the head.)

Here is Roeper’s list, followed by my comments.

1. “Slumdog Millionaire:” I haven’t seen it and neither have you. However, the best movie of the year was “Pineapple Express.” Hilarious.

2. “The Dark Knight:” Good flick, but it ain’t the rapture. It is the “Heat” of comic book flicks. Could have been 45 minutes shorter, without question. 

3. “The Wrestler:” Haven’t seen it, but I’ll see any movie that reportedly made Rowdy Roddy Piper cry. The director, Darren IHaveAReallyLongLastName, made “The Fountain,” easily the most pretentious movie this side of “The Darjeeng Limited” (and I don’t care if that’s not the name. It’s not worth my Google time). Yet he was on the Stern show, and is apparently a huge old-school wrestling fan, as am I.

One “Wrestler” quibble — everyone is saying this is Mickey Rourke’s big comeback. Didn’t that happen a few years ago with “Sin City” and “Animal Factory?”

4. “In Bruges:” Yes!!!! It feels like this came out 5 years ago. Great movie about two sorta neurotic hitmen. Yeah, that doesn’t sound original, but rent it. I promise you’ll like it.

5. “I’ve Loved You So Long:” Probably the best reviewed movie of the year, but I haven’t seen it and neither have you.

6. “Gran Torino:” Haven’t seen it, but it stars Clint Eastwood. ‘Nuff said. By the way, rent “Thunderbolt and Lightfoot,” if you’ve never seen it.

7. “Milk:” Haven’t seen it, but heck, I’m a Sean Penn fan — even sat through multiple showings of “I Am Sam.” Josh Brolin’s come a long way since “The Goonies,” huh? The guy is suddenly the new Robert Duvall, circa 1979. 

8. “The Visitor:” Saw it and really liked it. Regardless of your political views, you’ll be touched. Unless you’re one of the nuts who post on Topix.

9. “Forgetting Sarah Marshall:” I don’t know, didn’t do much for me. Lead character whined a lot, which seems to be a Gen Y requirement. Surprised so many critics loved it. I actually thought “Step Brothers” was much funnier. And “Step Brothers” is horrible, yet soooo good.

10. “Frozen River:” Somebody fill me in on this one. Is Roeper just making up titles?

11. “Doubt:” Didn’t see it but I’m sure my mom will rent it. I dunno.

12. “Snow Angels:” Not to be confused with Chevy Chase 2000 comedy “Snow Day,” which I didn’t see either.

13. “Frost/Nixon:” Heard it’s good, but I remember the specials being in heavy rotation on PBS in the 80s. It was a video store staple, too, so I’m not all that psyched.

14. “The Reader:” Roeper, couldn’t you have stopped at ten? I mean, jeez, I work during the day. I haven’t seen this one.

15. “Seven Pounds:” Haven’t seen this one either, but I will say I enjoyed “The Happening.” Thought it was freaky and pretty damn suspenseful. Don’t understand all the M. Night hate. 

16. “Iron Man:” Enjoyable bubble gum for the mind.

17. “Vicky Cristina Barcelona:” Sorry, but Woody Allen is a freak and his movies get creepier by the decade. 

18. “W.” Came and went in theaters, despite a mammoth marketing effort. Most critics didn’t like it. If Roeper says it’s cool, I’ll have to check it out.

19. “Henry Poole Is Here:” Again, I was playing golf on Nintendo Wee, so I missed this one, as did you.

20. “Burn After Reading:” This is another one the critics were split on — so much so I didn’t bother seeing it in the theaters. I’ll check it out after selling some plasma to raise some cash for the rental. By the way, “Miller’s Crossing” is the best damn Cohen brothers movie ever.

21. “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button:” Looks like Forrest Gump 2008. But it’s David Fincher, and that guy made “Seven,” “Fight Club” and “Zodiac,” featuring Robert Downey, Jr., perfectly capturing every reporter I worked with at The Patent Trader.

22. “WALL-E:” This is a great little Pixar movie and should be much, much higher on Roeper’s list. Sean Patrick Bowley over at The Connecticut Post said it’s the best movie of the year. I’m not ready to say that, but it’s in the top four, and is far superior to “The Dark Night.”

23. “The Bank Job:” Likable and cool throw-back heist flick, but among the best of the year? I’m not so sure. Anybody see “The Strangers?” Disturbingly effective horror film.

24. “Tropic Thunder:” See it just for Robert Downey, Jr. The guy should get an Oscar. I hate Jack Black, but thought he was funny in this. 

25. “Che:” Haven’t seen it. But I lived it.

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