Guts and Grog Tooned Up

Sunday, January 8, 2012

2011 A Year in Review: Films

     So 2011 is over and we are in the year of the apocalypse if John Cusack was right, and I assume he was.  I saw a fuck ton of amazing work genre and otherwise this year.  You had some brutal throwbacks, some amazing indie fare and Lars Von Trier even took a stab at remaking the above mentioned John Cusack end of the world action fest. OK well maybe not a direct remake, 2012 for art fags. I had a really hard time narrowing down a list. I considered doing separate lists for horror and other but I decided fuck that, horror is on the same playing ground so I just went with it. I know lots will disagree and that is OK. Along with what I found to be the 25 best films I am including some side lists and a list of films that I failed to see in time that I think would have had a good chance for the list. Blah Blah Blah, enough foreplay lets get to the good stuff.

      I am starting with five films that I absolutely loved but just don't feel like they are 2011 releases. I have been hearing about most of these since like 2009 and thanks to importing saw most of them last year. They however need to be recognized and all five would be in the top ten if included if not even the top five.

The Taint- This is one of the best low budget sleazy, bloody, offensive masterpieces of the last century. I have watched this so many times. Review here.

A Serbian Film- What can I say that hasn't been said. One scene makes people not pay attention to how fucking great this film is. Review here.

Life and Death of a Porno Gang- Another offering from Serbia. Shocking but gets lost in a certain other Serbian film's shadow. Review here.

Red White & Blue- I saw this in the theater and was blown away. It was soon after released to Netflix where I basically watched it on repeat for weeks. Review here.

Dead Hooker in a Trunk- This is finally getting distribution and everyone owes it to themselves to see it.

      OK. Now I have a list of films I have not seen yet. Some due to not being able to make it to Fantasia or TIFF.  Some I just didn't get around to, and some I would of seen but recently threw out my back and have been stuck at home.

The Artist
The Divide
Fathers Day
A Dangerous Method
The Millennium Bug
You're Next
Sleep Tight
Into the Abyss
We Need to Talk About Kevin
The FP

     So much greatness is possible in this list of films. A new Herzog documentary, the madmen that brought us Inside are at it again, Cronenberg, Polanski, and even Troma.  Panman is one of my most anticipated films and I hope it finds distribution just so I can finally see it. OK, now that you know what I didn't see and what I did but don't feel like it fits the criteria that I made up lets get onto it.  These films all had their main theatrical debut in America in 2011. Dates are a confusing thing, sometimes the math to figure out eighteen is a lot harder than Alice Cooper may sing about. Well onward wayward son. I give you the twenty five best films in my intoxicated opinion. 

25A- A Haunting in Salem- I am never afraid to profess my love for The Asylum.  While admittedly more then once I have been let down/bored/suicidal after a viewing there are more that I have more fun watching then I do banging your mom. AHIS is a fun throwback to haunted houses that makes you feel thirteen again without the molestation. Review here.

25B- I know I will get a lot of shit for this. I know people love to hate Michael Bay and even more so his take on the Transformers. Well I don't give a shit. I have fun watching them and sometimes that is what I need. Michael Bay basically just cums explosions and awesome all over the camera lens for three hours. I was never bored. This is the darkest and most well executed of the trilogy and for that I am thankful. Michael Bay please cum on my face again. 

24. Gingerdead Man 3: Saturday Night Clever- I love Full Moon. I have been with them since I first  was jerking off to my grandpa's porno mags in grade school. I have loved all the GDM films. The fist for Busey, the second for a crucified cookie and this one because he dances and time travels. Review here.

23. Rubber- A lot of people did not enjoy this. That is OK. I don't mind being right when everyone else is wrong. It happens a lot. This movie is insane, fun and the music rocked my balls off. Review here.

22. 13 Assassins- I went and saw this on my birthday after a day out with friends full of drinks and sushi. I was hopeful as I hadn't really cared about any of Miike's movies since Gozu.  I assumed he would rock a samurai film pretty hard but after his bull shit western I was leery.   I am glad to be wrong. His take on Kurosawa has elements of Miike with some strange and haunting imagery but is also and action fest full of blood and awesome. 

21. Snowtown- Bleak and captivating and close to what I assume it would feel like to have a baby kicked out of your stomach.  Australia has been responsible for some of my favorite films of the last ten years with films such as Wolf Creek and The Loved Ones. This is quickly added to the list. A must see.

20. The Innkeepers- Ti West has quickly become one of my favorite modern horror directors. House of the Devil is one of my favorites in years and I was very excited for this. The thing is ghost stories overall are not my favorite sub genre. Well I am happy to report that Innkeepers is great and would be higher on my list if it wasn't for such stiff competition this year. Review Here.

19. Stake Land- The Road with vampires. I loved this movie. Bad ass and brutal while remaining believable. Review here.

18. The Last Circus- Alejandro Jodorowsky with some Del Toro. Clowns with guns. Beautiful and exciting. Review here. 

 17. Super- I was lucky enough to get into what ended up being the first official American screening of this in Seattle. Rain Wilson and James Gunn were in attendance and I was blown away. Moments of hilarity while still being brutal, realistic and touching. 

16. The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo- David Fincher outside of a couple of flops (I'm looking at you Panic Room)always sucks me in. He tells a story like Grandpa from Troll 2 and that is the best compliment I can think of just to clarify. I mean he made a movie about Facebook that I watched numerous times. That is an achievement I can't even understand. Trent Reznor plays a large part in this with his unbelievable score and the actors all are on their game. 

15. Bereavement- The prequel to Malevolence was a surprise for me this year. I like Malevolence a lot but after years of waiting was not even sure we would ever see this. A third film in the series is rumored and I really hope it happens.  

14. Hesher- Great cast in this dark dramady where Joseph Gordon-Levitt summons Cliff Burton to the screen. So many laugh out loud moments while still staying dark and realistic even if approached from a fantastical POV. Joseph Gordon-Levitt's best performance since Mysterious Skin. 

13.Kill List- A British crime drama full of realistic violence and brutality that eventually punches you in your pregnant stomach with its insane conclusion. 

12. Bellflower- Wow. I don't feel like anything I say will make you understand how amazing this movie is. Sure some of the acting isn't perfect but it is so full of awesome I don't give a shit.  I want Medusa in my life so bad, and a flame thrower? Yeah, a flame thrower. 

11. Auschwitz- Uwe Boll who I think is a misunderstood genius brings his most insane work yet. No video games this time. Instead he takes on one of the worst events in our history books. Part documentary part exploitation you are even less human that me(that is not a good thing) if you aren't moved by this. His most stunning work as a director as well. Outside of the fucked up subject matter the sound and film are beautiful. Review here.

10. Super 8- Some people loved this some hated it, for me it was everything I wanted. I felt like kid again. 

9. Tucker & Dale vs. Evil- A perfect example of a horror comedy. I had more fun watching this than almost any film this year. If you haven't see it you need to fix that now. 

8. I Saw the Devil- Korean Revenge film like you have never seen. I saw this in the theater and was blown away.  Things happen in this film that you would never see coming. It's like this. You are my dad and the movie is the semi that killed him. Review here.

7. Melancholia- OK the fact that I have a Lars Von Trier film at number seven shows how good of a year it was for film. All hope is gone. 

6. The Skin I Live In- Almodovar made a monster movie. The best way I have heard it was from a friend of mine. "Just saw The Skin I Live In. Pretty fucked up. I could give you a review, or I could just show you on the doll where this movie gave me the bad touch" - Nicole Lovit. I couldn't of said it better myself.  

 5. The Tree of Life- I am not even going to try and explain why I love this. You know if you do. It was an experience like no other I had this year.

4. Dear God No!- This movie bent me over. I was not ready for the awesome that was about to be unleashed on me when I entered the theater for this. Review here.

3. Drive- Brutal, entertaining, fast, amazing. I could go on and on. After Valhalla Rising I was excited to see what Nicolas Winding Refn would do next and he kicked me right in the dick with this. The soundtrack which was roughly in the same spot on my top albums list is just a much of a character as Ryan Gosling. 

2. The Woman- Lucky McKee has done no wrong in my eyes and him teaming up with Jack Ketchum gave me the biggest boner I am capable of getting. The first time I watched it I was blacked out drunk. I even reviewed it while I was blacked out which I will include. I then watched it two more times the next day. Every time I watch it, it guts me. Review here(Blacked out drunk)

1. Hobo with a Shotgun- I knew it would happen. It had to be Hobo. I watched this so many times this year. VOD/Theater/Netflix/Blu Ray. It gets better every time. Review here.

     Well there it is. So many great movies this year. These are just a taste of the best. There were some great comedies but none of them were quite "best of." Bridesmaids would be the closest for me. That movie made me question my heterosexuality. Other ones were fun like 50/50 which showed us the funny side of cancer or A Good Old Fashioned Orgy which was surprising subtle while still being a lot of fun. Young Adult almost made my top list as well. If anything I hope Patton Oswalt gets an Oscar for it. Paul and Your Highness were fun while Our Idiot Brother and Horrible Bosses surprised me. There were some great documentary's on film such as Machete Maidens Unleashed, More Brains, American Grind house and Nightmares in Red, White and Blue. Errol Morris proved yet again that he is the master of documentary with Tabloid and Herzog made a 3D movie. Comic Book films filled the theaters and there was a few standouts with Thor, Captain America, The Green Hornet and one that came out of nowhere and almost made my list X-Men: First Class. Lets hope Marvel uses this as a model of how all comic films should be made. 

     Well now that 2011 is over I leave you with a list of films that have me shitting myself in excitement for 2012. 

The Dark Night Rises
Tim and Eric's Billion Dollar Movie
Puppet Master X
Piranha 3DD
The Toxic Avenger 5: The Toxic Twins
The Expendables 2
Two Headed Shark Attack
The Sleeper
The ABC's of Death
American Mary
The Cabin in the Woods
John Dies at the End

Well mother fuckers.......See you next year.(or this year if you want to be technical) 



Girl on Gore said...

I really enjoyed this post!! Happy 2012!

Guts and Grog Reviews said...

Thank you.

Jacob K. (frankbooth23) said...

Solid list. Definitely gives me a couple things to watch that I missed. And good for you sticking up for Transformers. It's a shitty moive, but god damn if it isn't fun as hell.

Demons Gate Records said...

Really digging this post man, got linked to it via the Dear God No! FB page and ended up consisted of a bunch of films I either have or have been meaning to check thanks for the ones I didn't know and for the encouragement to check out the ones I did!

Maynard Morrissey said...

Interesting list!
Last year I had the honour to watch The Taint twice (on Vimeo and at an Austrian Filmfestival): god, this movie is a hoot :D

Red White & Blue, Stake Land, Super & The Skin I live In all completely blew me away.

Guts and Grog Reviews said...

@ Demons Thank you. I am glad you came across it. @Maynard That's great. I wish I would of seen The Taint on the big screen. It played a festival here but it was right when I first moved here so I wasn't aware of where everything was. I saw that it had like a month later and was super bummed. Thanks for reading.

Direct to Video Connoisseur said...

Great list! I haven't seen all of these yet, so I'll have to check them out.