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Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Five Best: 2011 Movie Moments Part 3

Scene from "The Girl with the Dragon
Tattoo" courtesy of
Finally, the last set of five from our series of best movie moments from 2011. Any moments I missed? Let me know in the comments section at the end of the post.

2011 Movie Moments Part 1
2011 Movie Moments Part 2

courtesy of
My Week with Marilyn - Photo Shoot

It's tough to get inside the mind of such an iconic, troubled character. Michelle Williams does her best to capture the great Marilyn Monroe, specifically during an impromptu photo session with hungry paparazzi. She turns and asks "should I be her?" There was more to Marilyn than we know (even more than this film can show us), but a peek inside her life and her mind is enough for us, even when the Marilyn we know we isn't the real one.
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Rise of the Planet of the Apes - Caesar Speaks

In the pleasant surprise of the summer, the exceedingly long-titled prequel to the Planet of the Apes series boats a fantastic performance from Andy Serkis, the face and voice of Caesar, the lead ape. As the primates begin their revolt against mankind, a showdown between Caesar and caretaker Dodge (Tom Felton) sees Dodge reprising the famous line "get your paws of me you damn dirty ape," only to be met with an unexpected response: Caesar's first, menacing word, "NO!" An incredible film with quality we never saw coming.
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Shame - Running Off Steam

Don't let the NC-17 rating fool you - Shame is anything but sexy. It's an unflinching portrait of sex addiction headlined by the talented Michael Fassbender as Brandon, a seemingly together 30-something man who struggles with a dark past and difficult future. When his sister (Carey Mulligan) comes to stay with him, his anguish is amped up to dangerous territories. After a fight, Brandon goes out for a jog - an insanely long, uncut scene from director Steve McQueen that captures the menace and unending battle Brandon has within himself that we can never understand.
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Super 8 - Train Crash

Another surprisingly good summer blockbuster, J.J. Abrams science-fiction film is Spielberg-ian look at youth and responsibility. Though the train crash that sets the film running is obviously important, the more memorable portion is immediately before the crash, when the characters are filming their scene at the train station. Alice's (Elle Fanning) incredibly heart-felt delivery of the "please don't go" speech is heartbreaking, even in a scene that is technically the film within the film. Immediately after, the action begins, but that delivery is golden.
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Tree of Life - Fun in DDT

There's a lot of beautiful imagery throughout Terence Malick's philosophical pet project, but even with all the sweeping shots of space and the countryside, none sticks more than the U.S. Army fumigating the little Texas town with DDT gas, only to have the neighborhood children excitedly run through it like a sprinkler in their back yard. The shot is gorgeously composed, but points to a time when life was just that: life. When the stressors of the adult world were light years away.

So, there you have it. The years in movie moments. Is there anything from 2011 that I missed that deserves mention? Hope you had a good holiday!

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