Outstanding British Film
“Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy”
Michel Hazanavicius (“The Artist”)
Outstanding Debut By A British Writer, Director Or Producer
Jean Dujardin (“The Artist”)
Meryl Streep (“The Iron Lady”)
Christopher Plummer (“Beginners”)
Octavia Spencer (“The Help”)
“Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy”
Film Not In The English Language
“The Skin I Live In”
Makeup and Hair
“The Iron Lady” (
Special Visual Effects
“Harry Potter & the Deathly Hallows II”
“A Morning Stroll”
“Pitch Black Heist”
Orange Wednesdays Rising Award
Hal: Well, let’s say, when you were little, you always dreamed of some day getting a lion? And you wait and you wait and you wait and you wait and the lion doesn’t come. Then along comes a giraffe. You can be alone or you can be with the giraffe.
Oliver: I’d wait for the lion.
Hal: That’s why I worry about you.
While, for me, 2011 was not as a great a year in cinema as 2009 (many of the films I loved from that year I didn’t get to see until Jan of 2010, but still), I found myself loving more films this year than I did last year. In fact, you may notice that although I claim this is a list of fifteen films, it in fact contains sixteen films. There is one tie and I will explain my choice when I get to it. Last year before the year ended I managed to watch 53 new releases; this year I saw 57 (which is kind of pitifully low when you consider how many new-to-me films I saw this year; but that’s neither here nor there and you have to wait until tomorrow to read about that cinematic odyssey). I want to point out that my top five films have not changed since October, but the ten (eleven) that follow have been shifted and adjusted many, many times since then. Probably when I rewatch those films late on this list might still evolve some. I also want to mention that there were at least two films that I wanted to see before the end of the year that I was not able to see (The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo and The Adventures of Tintin: The Secret of the Unicorn); as always, there is no way to know whether those films would have even made the list had I seen them, but I wanted to point out that I’ve yet to see them so that comments of “where is ***?!” didn’t ensue. Okay, enough chatter, on to the list.
It’s that time of year. Everyone is frantically trying to finish end of the year projects at work or at school. People are freaking out because they are alone (hopefully not forever though!), etc. etc. It’s also that time of year when we celebrate those we love by giving them things we think they’ll love (or that we love and want to convince them to love, too). Thus I give you my first-ever Holiday Gift Guide, filled with 15 things that I think would make awesome gifts for the movie lover in your life.
So I saw far less films in June than I did in the first five months of 2011 (you can see all those lists here), but I also had a lot of personal changes in June. For one, I moved back to San Francisco at the end of May. This has led to 1) more movies in theaters and 2) mostly movies at the Castro Theatre and the Red Vic (which, sadly, is closing on the 25th!). I saw several films that I’d already seen before at those theaters. It also takes time to get to those theaters, thus less time to sit in my room watching movies. But the experience of seeing these great films (I saw Lawrence of Arabia in 70mm and Wings of Desire, among others!) more than makes up for the time it takes away from seeing other films. I have eaten so much popcorn in the last 30 days, you don’t even know. Haha. The other big change was I started grad school two weeks ago. While it is film school that I am going to, the classes do not just consist of watching films. Actually, we just watch clips and so far it’s mostly been of films I’ve seen before. And in the one class that we are watching feature films (on our own), I’ve already seen 9 of the 15 films, so that is exciting! Long story short, I saw less films in June than previous months. That being said, I also saw more really great films this month. Picking just five films to talk about is going to kill me. As I write this intro I still haven’t decided which five I am going to emphasize. I will say most of the films I watched in June deserve your time, so if you see one on the following list that you’ve always meant to watch but haven’t, just go ahead and watch it already!