Dec 25, 2010

Top Films of 2010: Introduction

Let's get this out of our chest: it wasn't a great year to remember to start this posting with.

The last year of the first decade in the 21st century has given us, at best, average cinematic outputs.

Add that with constant distraction from rampant pirated DVDs, checking out BlackBerry on very annoying too-often basis during film screenings, and other events, 2010 will not go down as the year I will remember fondly in terms of filmgoing experience.

However, being an optimist as I am and having worked for the past few years trying to get people to cinema, I find that despite the above occurrences, cinema remains attractive.

Watching films on big screen is still the best way to enjoy make-believe stories, an escapade of our mundane daily chores, a place to collectively gather our attention to one singular story in silence, and sitting in a darkened hall throughout an hour or two may be something nostalgic in the future.

Thus, I'd like to hang on to it as long as I can.

Living in a country where variety of world cinema other than the realms of Hollywood, Bollywood, and Mandarin is something of a rarity, we often have to deal and make use the best of what's present.

Turning to illegal products is unavoidable, yet one needs not to look far from the above paragraph that the communal activity of religiously going to cinema completes ourselves as a person. Too much? I just can't live in a city without cinema, that's all.  :)

With the above words in mind, I present to you my selection of Top Films of 2010 in the following categories:

1. Top Filmgoing Experience
There are 6 (six) films I saw in local cinemas this year that gave me purely aesthetic and ecstatic experiences that stay with me long after I left the cinema.

2. Top Disappointing Films
I restrict myself to 7 (seven) films with theatrical releases in local cinema this year, of which all of these films fail to live up to their potential. Thus, they may not be necessarily "bad" or "worst" films commonly featured in the year-end lists. A few may be familiar, though.

3. The Worth-Second-Chance Films
Not less than 8 (eight) films that I would give a second chance in viewing/observing/analyzing again. When I watched them for the first time in cinema, I wasn't quite sure how to make of them. But overtime, the thoughts of these films occasionally popped up in my mind, ensuring myself that they might be worth revisiting.

4. The Honor Rolls
You may call this as runner-up lists of 9 (nine) films that are too close to call with the next category.

5. The Top 10 Films of 2010
Pretty self-explanatory. Can't resist the idea of 10 (films) in the year of 2010. Will there be 11 films next year? We'll see.

But what you already can see from the lists above are films only released in Indonesian cinemas in 2010. Definitely some 2009 releases will be included, and sadly, I'll have to leave out some films released at the end of 2010 that already mentioned in this year's award season's accolades.
There will always be next year.

Also, I intentionally leave out DVDs and screeners, as it would not be fair to the idea of filmgoing experience in cinema.

Until then, enjoy!

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Jakarta, Indonesia
A film festival manager. A writer. An avid moviegoer. An editor. An aspiring culinary fan. A man.