On Tarantino, I completely agree. I love his abilities as a director, not just a screenwriter. He knows the perfect way to utilize every actor he works with - John Travolta, David Carradine, Michael Madsen, etc. I'm really looking forward to Django Unchained and I just know that he'll get the most out of Kevin Costner (who is otherwise a very terrible actor in my opinion). Tarantino's passion for films is very infectious.
Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind - I love the structure of the script - the fact that when the film starts and we think they're meeting each other for the first time, it's actually the second time. I don't know, I feel like a kid at the circus when watching Kaufman movies - Gondry, too, because the man is extremely inventive and fun. I think the main reason why I connect with Kaufman so well is due to his comedic style. Agreed, definitely a film that will haunt you.
Crimson Gold sounds interesting and I would add it to my queue, but those bastards at Netflix don't seem to have it. Definitely like the cut of Panahi's jib after seeing Offside.
I have yet to see Million Dollar Baby because I mostly try and avoid boxing movies; they all feel the same to me. So while the odds of me seeing the film are quite slim, maybe I'll train hard, give it a shot, and then eventually win the middleweight championship belt. Yes, that was lame...but I couldn't resist.
I'm more familiar with Brad Bird for his work on The Simpsons than anything else. I love Ratatouille, but I haven't seen The Incredibles or The Iron Giant. The latter was just never on my radar, but with The Incredibles, I've definitely tried my hardest to avoid it. I know that you and Jeff had a discussion about Pixar awhile back and I agree with him (sorry). I see now that he did list this one as an honorable mention, though, but I'll list the Pixar movies that I don't care to see: Cars, Finding Nemo, and the aforementioned one. For some reason, I just see through the cookie-cutter writing and character construction. It just seems very easy to me - the writing, that is. The CG is revolutionary and commendable, no doubt. But there probably is hope for me yet - Monster's Inc. used to be on that list; I saw it and enjoyed it. I will give Iron Giant a shot, though, because Jeff's told me how much you love it.
Okay, so I have absolutely zero issues with your top ten or honorable mentions (from what I hear, I could call you out on Brown Bunny...but I haven't seen it). So maybe it's cheap to take shots at the other movies you listed...but sure, I'll call you out on Passion of the Christ. I would rather erase this movie from my memory than an ex-girlfriend. Jeff and I saw this with my parents and our older brother - a great family movie, by the way. And I remember my parents asking us what we thought about it. I had no freaking clue what to say to them. In fact, I still don't know what to say about it. What is there to say about watching a man be tortured for an hour? And the fact that this movie was made by Mel Gibson makes it that much more disturbing.
I admit, I am curious on your thoughts about Ella Enchanted. I'm not making fun of you on this, I am just genuinely curious on this one. It's probably just as good as Garden State, though, am I right?
Spider-Man 2 - I only seemed to be able to enjoy the first two Spider-man movies in the theater. Seeing them on DVD, they just lost their appeal. Even though I like and respect most of the people working on this one, it just feels very standard to me. Nothing special whatsoever.
The Village - I know Lisa talked about this one being M. Night's worst, but I would definitely disagree. The Happening will give you eye cancer and the steaming pile of shit that was The Last Airbender still has flies swarming around it. I will go on record and say that I liked The Village. I love the twist, whether it's cheap or predictable or whathaveyou.
I considered listing Team America to my short honorable mentions list, and I'm not sure why I omitted it. Maybe because it isn't as funny as anything else that Trey Parker and Matt Stone have done, but still, it has some good laughs and it's a nice parody.
Great question on how we're making these lists. For me, I don't have a definite answer. The top three are usually movies that I absolutely love and would watch again and again. After that, it's a mix between movies I like and movies I feel deserve to be higher than others. Even if I don't like a certain movie as much, it still deserves a higher ranking than another because it's more ambitious or something. Maybe that's not clear, but really, that's my actual answer - it isn't clear. Crash is definitely cool to hate and rightfully so. I've never understood why it's considered to be a good movie. It's been done before (the mosaic structure) and any movie with Sandra Bullock AND Brandon Fraser will bug the hell out of me. One of them is bad enough...except for Speed...I'm only human. Too bad about Tarantino, I would really like to know more about why that is. Like I said to Brandon, I feel his love for film is contagious. I added We Don't Live Here Anymore to my instant queue and Spring, Summer, Fall... to my DVD queue.
I watched Closer back when it came out and I honestly remember nothing about this one. I don't know what happened to my memory for this year, but it's very ironic given Eternal Sunshine came out at that time. Glad to see that you have Outfoxed listed in your honorable mentions. I considered that as well. Fuck Fox News! And again, The Village...you aren't alone in liking it. I hated Napoelon Dynamite when I first saw it, but eventually Uncle Rico weaseled his way into my heart. "Coach woulda put me in fourth quarter, we would've been state champions." Oh shit, and Rex Kwan Do. Good stuff, but I really don't care for anyone else in the movie...just those two characters...which is why I didn't list it anywhere.
Breaking Bad - agreed that the murder of Victor sets the tone for the season - that scene was great and I take my hat off to the writers, despite the thoughts I expressed a few days ago. I can't wait for more episodes and I do hope Jesse finds some joy again a la season 2. It's crazy how the writers draw more sympathy for him than Walt - a man with cancer, but it's definitely the case for me. Also, Jeff and I haven't been watching The Twilight Zone as of late, so you're not alone there.
A nice list, as always. However, I am slightly disappointed that it doesn't mirror my own. Haha, Justin Finch-Fletchly will always make me laugh. The stupidest Harry Potter name in the history of the franchise.