Looking back I realized that I have seen quite a lot of very good and some outstanding movies this year (Let’s be honest, I’ve also watched a load of crap but this isn’t the post to talk about them).
I narrowed them down to twelve. This was only possible because I excluded all those movies I have re-watched but reviewed for the first time (like The Downfall). Those I re-watched are mostly quite famous, no need to put them in the spotlight again, but those I list below are not all equally well-known and they deserve to be mentioned especially.
Here we go
Innocent Voices – Voces Inocentes (2004) Mexican/US/Puerto Rican movie. This is a movie on the war in El Salvador and the use of children as soldiers. It may very well be my favourite this year. (Here is the review).
Roma, Città aperta – Rome Open City (1945) Italian movie. Roberto Rosselini’s masterpiece about the resistance in Rome during WWII. A classic of Italian Neo-Realism. (Here is my review)
The Brest Fortress – Brestkaya krepost (2010) Russian movie. Gritty, realistic and combat driven story of the siege of a fortress. (Here is my review)
Henri de Navarre – Henry 4 (2010) French movie on Henry 4. Historical and epic movie about King Henri 4 of France and the War of Religions. (Here is my review)
The Cranes are Flying – Letyat zhuravli (1957) Russian movie. Very expressive and beautiful movie about a woman who waits for her lover to return from war. WWII. (Here is my review)
First Light (2010) British TVmovie based on the memoir of a Spitfire pilot. (Here is my review)
Harry Brown (2009) British movie about a WWII veteran becoming a vigilante. (Here is my review)
The Baader Meinhof Complex (2008) German movie about the Red Army Fraction.
No Man’s Land (2001) Bosnian movie about the war in Bosnia and, yes, I still think it’s hilarious and a great war satire.
Waterloo (1970) Russian/Italian movie on Napoleon’s great defeat. (Here is my review)
Life and Nothing But – La vie et rien d’autre (1989) French WWI drama by Bertrand Tavernier. Very moving story of a woman who is looking for her husband in war-torn France. (Here is my review)
Tropic Thunder (2008) US movie. Extremely funny although in dubious taste. (Here is my review)
I’ve seen most of these, and some of them even this year. I was surprised by how much I liked Waterloo. I expected it to be a bit campy, but those large-scale battle scenes were handled very well indeed.
I liked Waterloo a lot. It gives a great feel for those battles. I didn’t think I’d come up with a list as diverse as this one.
I was thinking of doing one of these. Look for it in the next week or so. Your list gives me some additions for my TBW list. I have not seen most of them (being foreign and all). Of the ones I’ve seen I liked Cranes, Baader, and Waterloo. You know my opinion on No Man’s Land. I totally agree on Tropic Thunder. My list will be drastically different. Are you going to do a worst list?
I’ll be watching our for it. No, I won’t do a worst of. It wasn’t a bad year all in all with the exception of The Alamo (btw… you did not comment on my long John Wayne movie list on the They were Expendable post) and Pathfinders and a few others. I now some people will think Tropic Thunder is crap but I honestly think many who wrote bad reviews took it seriously…
And please let’s not go into a “Is No Man’s Land” funny debate anymore. 🙂
Okay, let’s debate instead whether Harry Brown is a war movie. You’ll have to convince me of that. I really enjoyd it BTW.
It is debatable but if Gran Torino is, this is. I don’t want to be too strickt in my definition or I’d end up watching and re-watching my Top 10 or some mediocre real war movie. Rather watch something good that is loosely part of the genre. IMO.
I understand. Gran Torino is an excellent comparison. I would not put either of them in the genre, but that’s just my opinion. You have created the “grumpy old vet kicks punk ass” subgenre. I look forward to your post recommending movies in this subgenre.
I’m quite partial to that genre really.