To quote last year's post: "It may be hard to believe when you read an excoriating review, but every time I sit down to watch a movie I do so in joyful hope. I can't explain how much I love cinema. Ever since I was a little girl there seemed to be something magical about a beam of light that transformed a negative into a living and breathing story. So in a rare annual moment of warmth and optimism, here follow those flashes of brilliance that reminded me - amidst the sequels, threequels and hopeless failures - just how wonderful cinema can be. Note that this list is significantly different from my Best Films of 2008 list (found in a drop-down box in the side-bar). Even piss-poor flicks can have moments of inspiration - which is a faintly hopeful thought."
1. When Rambo Strangles The Guy So Hard He Breaks Through His Skin and Blood And Veins and Shit Start Spurting Out. The long-awaited RAMBO flick was clearly piss-poor but among all that irony-free absurdity there was one moment so transcendentally ridiculous it gave me one of the biggest belly-laughs of the year!
2. The Sound-track and Cinematography as Daniel Plainview Rushes to the Oil Platform to Save His Son. A breathtaking moment of pure cinema in THERE WILL BE BLOOD - stunning cinematography, unbearable tension, intense orchestral score. This was cinema at its most visceral and inescapable and audacious. I'm still sore that the soundtrack was disqualified from the Oscars on a technicality.
3. Michael Pitt Scares the Bejesus Out of the Middle Classes in the Final Frame of FUNNY GAMES. A movie so brilliant Michael Haneke had the arrogance to make it twice, this time with the angelic looking Pitt holding the audience's eyes in the final frame. Are we being warned that we're next or indicted for sado-masochistic voyeurism? Genius.
4. Hrithik Roshan's Dance Routine to Main Aisa Kyun Hoon Establishes Him As the Best Song and Dance Man in Cinema since Gene Kelly. Hrithik Roshan is a hoofer. He knows dance and not in the over-choreographed Michael Jackson c.Thriller style that most Bollywood movies adopt. Pure talent. Pure entertainment. The best traditions of Hindi cinema.
5. When Dawn Slices Off Tobey's Cock With Her Vagina Dentata. Seriously funny. (Probably not if you're a bloke, admittedly). And by far the best reason to watch the teen horror cum political satire, TEETH.
6. When The Joker Slams The Droog's Face Into the Pencil. Great horror is not what you're shown but what you imagine. A lightening bolt of pure fright energises an over-long and over-worked Batman sequel.
7. When The Joker Rides Through Gotham Triumphant, His Head Out The Window Of a Moving Car. One of the most spine-chilling images of 2008. Shame Nolan didn't have the balls to end THE DARK KNIGHT on that image, creating a second part finale as powerful as EMPIRE.
8. When The Thief Chases The Cop In JAR CITY. I can't escape why this scene is funny. It doesn't sound funny when I try. Just please try and seek out this superb Icelandic comic thriller. Please.
9. Hellboy and Abe Listening to Barry Manilow's "Can't Cry Without You" closely tied with Johan Krauss kicking Hellboy's ass in the Locker Room. Pure Comedy Gold.
10. JAAACK!!!! The not unattractive and yet infinitely goofy Jean Dujardin as pre-Bond spoof Agent OSS-117. At times, this actor's facility for physical comedy almost touches Sellars in the Clousseau movies. Perhaps the most unexpected belly-laugh of the year - given that Professor007 and I were in an art cinema famed for showing turgid self-righteous foreign language flicks.