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Eleven from Eleven

Friday 6 January 2012, 16:28

Mark Kermode Mark Kermode

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At the end of 2011 I posted my ten worst movies of the year. Since then a lot of people have been asking me for my list of the best. I already revealed them on the 5 Live show but here they are again plus a difficult question - since I was forced to leave out Drive, one of my favourite movies of the year, which of my choices would you lose to make way for it?

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    Comment number 21.

    I would drop Kill List, a really good film, in fact a great film, until the last 5 minutes. It's like the writer couldn't figure out how to end it properly, lazy!!

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    Comment number 22.

    Well, in terms of what could replace Drive, I think the most obvious choice would be Senna because the two films are kindred spirits in a way. They both have heroic but flawed lead characters who live for the thrill of driving.

    In fact, you could do what you did in your worst of 2011 list, and have Drive and Senna as a double bill (a la I Spit On Your Grave and Straw Dogs).

    Of course, if you really wanted to bend the rules, you could argue that since The Artist only played in one cinema during 2011 (and only for two days), most people would see it in UK cinemas during 2012, and discount The Artist for that reason (but something tells me you won't be keen on that idea).

    My favourite film of 2011 hasn't been mentioned yet - Woody Allen's Midnight In Paris

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    Comment number 23.

    Ditch Melancholia. Answer this question: what ideas are in that movie that hadn't already been explored more interestingly in Antichrist?

    Drive most definitely deserves to replace it and Tinker Tailor deserves to be higher.

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    Comment number 24.

    Drive was my favorite film of 2011, and what film it should replace in your list? A Separation, easily. Why? The characters were dull and one-dimensional, the only intrigue the story held was as a kind of pseudo-Rashomon knockoff, and the social/political conclusions of its house-of-cards narrative couldn't be more obvious and "who cares." Of course life sucks in Iran; that's why they call it Iran. Drive is a vastly superior film for reasons I'm sure I don't need to name.

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    Comment number 25.

    For me Drive would replace Melancholia as I feel, although Melancholia is a pretty good film, it just seems like it's trying too hard to be profound...at times it also steers nearer and nearer to being somewhat kitsch and trite. A good, but flawed film, not a great film in my opinion.

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    Comment number 26.

    Thanks for this. I had to stop listening to the 5 Live show. As much as I like it, it's got ridiculously long. It was perfect at 45mins, maybe an hour but 90-120mins it's just to long sorry.

    As to the films. Tinker Tailor, Soldier Spy not because it's not good (because it is) but because it's far to detailed. I say that so rarely but did they really need to put the entire book into the film?

    Sure I know so many people dislike how films cut stuff out of books but they're completely different mediums. Films should portray the feeling of a book.

    Drive on the other hand is a fantastic genre movie, a great B Movie and does it what it says on the tin in a fresh and new way. My only complaint being the violence at times is gratuitous (and the villains are your usual cardboard cut-outs) but otherwise I cannot fault it. I love the 80s feel and soundtrack especially.

    My review for it in fact is in this month's Artrocker magazine, get it from WH Smiths.

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    Comment number 27.

    Hmm, that's a tough one. I'd go for Hugo. As much as I enjoyed it at the time, it seems rather lightweight in comparison to the others.

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    Comment number 28.

    I haven't seen them all, but since I found Melancholia just boring rather than melancholic and if one really has to go, (can't u have fourteen like the first dude said?) let Melancholia fall and just be happy and sleep well again!!
    I'm not a doctor, but that's my advice, doc!

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    Comment number 29.

    Sticking with round numbers my top Ten was..

    10. Benda Bilili!
    9. Hanna
    8. Melancholia
    7. Submarine
    6. Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy
    5. Win Win
    4. Moneyball
    3. Drive
    2. Senna
    1. We Need To Talk About Kevin

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    Comment number 30.

    The film to remove (or perhaps just swap directly in the rankings rolling out from 11), would be Tyrannosaur.

    It is an exceptionally well made film, with great photography, great story-telling, great acting and a real unique identity...that being said I struggled with a sensation I couldn't shake for the rest of the day (possibly week) after seeing it when people wanted to discuss the film.

    Can you say a film was good even if you would never want to see it again?

    For all the merits in the construction of the film and the big film kudos of eliciting genuine emotion it is hampered by the fact that those emotions were a twisting-uncomfortably-in-the seat feeling of oppression, loathing and disgust. I think it would be hard to push yourself through it again and simply put it to you Mark; would you watch Drive again before you watched Tyrannosaur and how important is that in judging the merit of a film?

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    Comment number 31.

    I think it's a shame many some are saying they'd omit Kill List. I think that Kermode featured it in his top ten is really ballsy and helps draw the attention it deserves. It's an incredibly interesting, unique little film. I loved it. Probably for the same reasons many have for hating it.

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    Comment number 32.

    I wouldn't drop anything - just extend the list. In future, we'll be able to judge the cinematic year by whether Dr K's 'Good list' had 5, 10 or 50 items... and maybe by the size of the bad list too...

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    Comment number 33.

    Out of the films I saw last year, that are on your list, Kill List, Tinker Tailer Soldier Spy, We need to talk about Kevin; Drive stands up very well, and I'd almost quite easily replace it with Kill List.

    I quite liked Kill List, but I thought that Drive was a much more confident, and cinematically successfull film. Kill List was maybe more interesting and unusual, but Drive was better made, more assured.

    In terms of favourite films, I think Kill List makes sense (not that it's my favourite film, or that I liked it better than Drive), but in terms of the best films of 2011, Drive is, I think, better technically.

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    Comment number 34.

    Good list doc, but I would definitely replace Melancholia for Drive. Melancholia is a good film, but nowhere near good enough to be in a best 10 (or 11 in your case) of the year.

    Personally I would have The Guard in there too. Brendan Gleason makes the film brilliant, with anyone else Gerry Boyle is an unlikeable insult of a man, but Brendan makes him living and breathing. A troubled man, worned out by life and working in the backwaters of Ireland (like Father Ted), despite the occasional racist remark. Has to win awards.

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    Comment number 35.

    Well for me personally it would be Senna because I never rate documentaries along side regular acted movies. I have Drive as the best film of the year by a fairly wide margin so you could pick any of the others but id perhaps lean towards replacing Hugo.
    My top 11 (although I am still to see Ides of March and Tinker Tailor)

    1. Drive
    2. Warrior
    3. X-Men: First Class
    4. Rise of the Planet of the Apes
    5. The Tree of Life
    6. Crazy, Stupid, Love.
    7. Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol
    8. The Beaver
    9. Bridesmaids
    10. The Debt
    11. Win Win

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    Comment number 36.

    I'm very surprised at how many people want to replace Kill List, for me it was the second best film of the year (sorry but for me Drive is still the film of 2011) It was the first horror film since Audition that has truly made me feel both uncomfortable and horrified. A great film that should have gotten much more attention. And to thing when my friend and I saw it at the Empire, the screening only had six other people, and four of those people walked out. Just goes to show how gore and blood has replaced suspence and tension for some horror fans.

    We Need to Talk About Kevin was also a great film, although I still prefer Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy over it anyday. However I'm surprised no one has mentioned Hanna. A brilliant surreal action film that was also sadly ignored by many.

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    Comment number 37.

    great list Mark. Even moreso with the omission of Drive. To be perfectly honest I did not find it engaging. It looked and sounded wonderful, but for an action flick, it bored me rigid I'm afraid; contrived B-movie style over substance (and I know I'm in the minority).

    Loved Benga Bilili, Tyrannosaur, Tinker Tailor and Senna. I'd make room for Bridesmaids (if indeed that film was 2011)

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    Comment number 38.

    Kevin? Meh, remove that. It worked as a horror film, like the Omen - but had the same level psychological depth. I was entertained but thought it was essentially arted-up trash, not top-10 material.

    Agreed with you on Separation - a wonderfully generous, adult film. We also shared Kill List, Senna and Tyrannosaur.

    My list: http://shotthroughawindow.wordpress.com/2011/12/30/my-ten-favourite-films-of-2011/

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    Comment number 39.

    The Guard is my personal film of the year, along with Kill List and Source Code. I guess if you'd reviewed it on release it may have even been among your top 11 too. Every bit as good as In Bruges, in my opinion.

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    Comment number 40.

    Lose 'We Need to Talk about Kevin'. It wasn't even the best film I saw that week - and it was the only film I saw that week. The red/blood symbolism was obvious, pretentious and overdone, the storyline ludicrous and the acting wooden. It has to be the most overrated film of the year.

    ps 'The Guard' was rubbish too - not a patch on 'I Went Down (1997)' which made better use of Brendan Gleeson's talent.

    pps Film of the year? The Artist!


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