Top 10 Favorite Films of 2009

Movie by Joey Paur

We had a really fun year at the movies, and there were a lot of great films that came out that I really enjoyed watching, but now is the time to choose my favorite movies of 2009. Only ten movies get to make the list, but after seeing all the films that the filmmakers of the world have made this year, it wasn’t really that hard for me to pick them out. 

These ten films left a strong impression on me over the last year, and are movies I feel I can watch over and over again without getting tired of them.

1. Star Trek

The moment the movie started I was in awe, my jaw just dropped and hung open. I was immediately engulfed in the world that was created for us. The movie had me in a big giant hug from the beginning to the end of the film, and it wasn’t like a tight annoying bear hug, it was a comfortable hug that just felt right. I couldn’t believe the awesomeness that was unfolding before my eyes! Gigantic star ships flying through space, lasers and explosions, mixed with incredible sound effects and music, a fantastic story with wonderful characters all mixed together in a flurry of brilliance made this one of the best movie going experiences I have had in a very long time. 

2. 500 days of Summer

I have nothing but good things to say about this movie. It was really quite an amazing film, and it's one that I recommend to everyone! I want to stand on the rooftops and yell at the huge crowd standing below to see this movie! It’s a movie with characters that I think most people may be able to connect with. It really connected with me on a personal level because I have gone through the same type of experience as the main character Tom did. The movie also has a great look to it, and the way the story starts sets the tone for the whole film. It’s a funny, sad and uplifting film.

3. Inglourious Basterds

It is my opinion that director Quentin Tarantino made his best film this year. Every moment of this movie, you are completely enthralled with the events taking place on screen. You're sucked into this historically based alternate universe. At times you ache to get in on the action, and the rest of the time you feel held captive by it. It was so fun watching the characters created for this film up on screen, and I loved the intensity of the film and the and how the scenes and events of the story unfolded. As long as this movie already was, I would have loved to spend some more time exploring the universe Tarantino created. That was the films biggest strength, it completes and satisfies itself, but leaves you wanting more.

4. The Hurt Locker

This was such an awesomely intense film! I was on the edge of my seat from beginning to end. The story was awesome and the acting was incredible. This is a film that has all the right ingredients to be nominated for and possibly take the top prize of Best Picture for the year. In fact I would love to see it win Best Picture of the year. I enjoyed the hell out of this movie and if you haven’t had the chance to see it yet make sure you watch it when it hits the street on DVD.

5. District 9

This has got everything a movie geek is looking for in a film, there is nothing to complain about! It’s got an original idea, there was no built in audience, it was full of actors you have never heard of before, and this is the first feature film that director Neill Blomkamp has directed! Here is a guy that every fanboy and fangirl knew about, and until this movie was released he was only known for what he didn’t do, and that was his attachment to the Halo film that fell through. Not many directors can slap their name on their first feature film, and have people know who that person is, and what they haven’t done. It is well deserved though. Blomkamp created a great movie! His style is hard edged and tough. He’s not afraid to get down and dirty. He's made a very gritty sci-fi film, and I loved it.

6. Avatar

Not since Star Wars have wee seen a completely original world brought to life in such a huge and movie changing way. Avatar is the Star Wars of this generation. Not since The Lord of the Rings trilogy have we seen anything so epically huge and mind blowing! After The Lord of the Rings trilogy ended I wondered if we would ever see a movie on such an epic scale like that again, and James Cameron was the guy that pulled it off. Sure we’ve seen the story a million times with with Tarzan, Dances With Wolves, Ferngully, and a ton of other films where manifest destiny is used to tell a story. Only the story has never been told so epically. 

7. Moon

There is nothing not to like about Moon. It is everything a good sc-fi movie should be and more. The story was iron clad, there are no unexplained plot holes that leave you guessing what happened to who or what. Sam Rockwell gave the best performance of his career in this film and he should be nominated for a best actor award for what he did in this movie. He was absolutely incredible, I was in awe watching him do his thing on screen. I think the film has the potential to be a classic much like Pitch Black and Gattaca.

8. The Hangover

This is by far the best comedy the year, one of the funniest comedies I have seen in a long time. It's going to be very hard to top, because the comedy bar has been set very high. I just don't see anything coming out that will be able to out-comedy this film. Everyone in the film was hilarious! Bradley Cooper, Ed Helms, and Zach Galifianakis were awesome. But it's Galifianakis who stole the show. I had to put this film on the list! It had me laughing from beginning to end.

9. The Brothers Bloom

I don’t know how or why but this movie seemed to be overlooked by everyone! The Brothers Bloom was a totally adorable dramedy built on a mature fantasy world. In a world where all we are seeing in the movie theaters are sequels, remakes, comic book, and video game movies it is awesome to see a slick original film with new and different lovable characters. Johnson has created another original film unlike anything I have seen before. In telling the story of the perfect con, Johnson created a perfect movie. There is never a dull moment in the film. It consistently keeps you entertained through the whole movie, I couldn't help but have a smile on my face all the way through it. 

10. A Serious Man

The Coen Brothers managed to create a significant film about insignificance, and a meaningful film about meaninglessness. It asks the ageless question... “Why do bad things happen to good people?” But doesn’t give an answer. This film is very unconventional, there are no defined themes, no plot resolution, no typical Hollywood ending. The ending is open for the audience to interpret. The Coen Brothers are not only screwing around with Larry’s life, but they are playing with the audience as well, which is why I liked it so much. If you can accept the mystery of this film then you’re going to love it.


Honorable Mentions:

Mystery Team

Mystery Team is a geektastic movie of comedy greatness! The movie was created by the great minds of the comedy team DERRICK Comedy and Mystery Team was their first film. It was one of the funniest movie I saw this year and I can’t wait to see what these guys end up doing next, there is a lot of talent in this group and they have a bright filmmaking future ahead of them.


This isn't just another zombie flick, this movie puts an inventive and creative twisted spin on the genre. It’s a perfect mix of zombies, thrills, horror and comedy. The movie was extremely funny and it was gloriously full of blood and gore. This is definitely one of the best times I had at the movies this year, it had me in tears of laughter. 

The Fantastic Mr. Fox

This turned out to be my favorite Wes Anderson film so far. I absolutely loved it. This was the perfect story for Wes Anderson to tell, I honestly don’t see how anyone else could have pulled it off and made it that good. The story, dialogue, and design were its strongest attributes, each one had their certain charms that made this movie the hilarious film gem that it was.


The movie is absolutely beautiful.  The animation is breathtaking, the story is hilarious and heart warming. This is Pixar doing what it does best.

Up In the Air

George Clooney doing what he does best, Jason Rietman showing off his amazing creative directing skills, and a story with situations that people can connect with. This movie is going to be nominated for a good amount awards this year. 


I love films like this! The kind where the story and characters just wrap me in the creators world. You really can't go wrong putting a team together that consists of writer Neil Gaiman and master stop motion animation director Henry Selick.  It’s a joyfully nightmarish film. 


As a fan of the graphic novel I thought Watchmen was absolutely incredible! The movie nailed exactly what my expectations for it were. Everything that was put in the movie was perfect and spot on. This supposedly unmakable film was made incredibly well, and with an awesome amount of detail that in my opinion no other director would have brought to the movie. Snyder fought the studio system to bring the audience the most faithful adaptation of Watchmen that could have been made. I truly enjoyed every second of the film. It was two hours and forty-five minutes of balls out awesomeness.  


Here's yet another great film from director Clint Eastwood. This is definitely his most inspiring and influential film yet. It’s a fantastic sports film, one that carried a great message. It was a very positive and uplifting film that leaves you with a sense of hope and happiness when you leave the theater. In a world were we are surrounded by a lot of negativity, with a decent amount of films with downer endings, seeing a movie like Invictus was a nice change of pace. Movies don’t have to be depressing to be good.

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