The Digital Fix Films of 2010

And so as predictable as the UK's inability to deal with the new weather sensation that is snow, we come to our end of year round-up. The team have been busy locked away in TDF Towers this past week to somehow get to a colloborative definitive top ten films of 2010. Let's just say that it wasn't pretty but what happens in an end of year meeting, stays in an end of year meeting. Well, except this list of course.

If you haven't seen any of the films on this top ten countdown, then watch them. If you have seen them, watch them again. And if you're watching them now, then do so safe in the knowledge that if you disagree with our opinion, we will hunt you down. Enjoy!

10) SCOTT PILGRIM VS. THE WORLD (Edgar Wright)

image
It may have flopped in America, but the Edgar Wright's first Hollywood film appealed to the geek inside all of us. Or as Mike Sutton vehemently stated "I hate comic strips. I hate graphic novels. I hate Michael Cera. But I love this movie. Why? Erm, dunno." Our boss man Dave Foster had the final say though: "A pure geek out, I loved every minute of this. I also enjoyed the fact so many in the audience I saw it with clearly didn’t get half of it." Perhaps it appealed to our (admittedly false) sense of superiority over you mere mortals as well then.

9) A SINGLE MAN (Tom Ford)

image
Perhaps the most effortlessly stylish of the films in our top ten but, as Noel Megahey so rightly asserted, "substance too, effectively evoking a period and mood that expresses perfectly the vulnerability of its main character, well played by Colin Firth." The latter point was concurred with by Matt Shingleton who said that the "script is succinct and Colin Firth's performance is even better, anchoring the film with more emotion than any of Ford's beautifully stylish tricks can hope to elicit." We confess to never have owned a Tom Ford suit, but there's no doubt there'll be some added style in our DVD collection now thanks to him.

8) FOUR LIONS (Chris Morris)

image
After the most stylish, comes 2010's most divisive movie and it should come as no surprise that Chris Morris is at the heart of it. His feature directorial debut resulted in John White boldly proclaiming him as "our greatest living satirist" and quite rightly so. Not wanting to be outdone, I popped up with the even bolder claim of calling it "this year's finest comedy making you laugh and gasp in equal measure, eventually making you even care for its central characters." Good point, well made I feel.

7) ANOTHER YEAR (Mike Leigh)

image
It's a pretty safe bet that if Mike Leigh releases a film, then at least one end of year compilation will feature it and so it is that Another Year finds itself seventh in our rundown. Roger Keen described it as "four immaculately observed, beautifully acted slices of ‘ordinary life’, with the customary threnodial note strengthening at the end," with Gavin Midgley adding the cherry on top by saying that it featured "strong performances, including an unforgettable turn by Lesley Manville". We've already got our pencils on the betting slip for his next project.

6) SHUTTER ISLAND (Martin Scorsese)

image
Much like with A Single Man, there's probably no better sign of a film's quality than it being in an end of year list after being released early in the year. Shutter Island was released back in the heady days of March but won enough of us over to remain worthy. Our American correspondent Clydefro Jones was so enamoured that he jetted in especially to say it showcased "it connected in a deeper way than expected by mixing homage with relevant themes of loss and psychological unravelling, all wrapped up in a crackerjack suspense tale". Gavin, now on a roll, also commented that "Scorsese has great fun piling on the gothic/noirish mood, tension and red herrings" and, clearly, we did to.

5) THE GIRL WITH THE DRAGON TATTOO (Niels Arden Oplev)

image
OK so the sequels might not have been much cop, but they did have so much to live up to. The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo was praised by Mike who declared that it "does about as good a job of translating a complex novel into film as you could hope for but deserves special praise for the superb performances and atmospheric location photography"; while Dave made the whole team groan and have to go on a break to recover after he described it as "both edgy and edge-of-the-seat stuff". Expect us to join the usual 'not as good as the original' bandwagon when the US remake comes out next year.

4) KICK-ASS (Matthew Vaughn)

image
For a film relatively high on our list, Kick-Ass didn't completely escape criticism but everyone was in agreement with Noel who established that while it forgets about the satire element halfway through, "it remains thrilling and entertaining without ever becoming as unbearably serious as Christopher Nolan's Dark Knight movies." John was a tad more direct with his praise, nominating it because it contained "sweary mary super heros and Nic Cage back making great films", adding that it "proves that Ms. Jane Goldman is now the most talented member of her household as she reboots the British film industry in cahoots with director Matthew Vaughan." And who can argue with that?

3) TOY STORY 3 (Lee Unkrich)

image
Controversial. It may be the only film in our top ten to have garnered a coveted perfect ten on these very pages but finds itself at three after receiving limited, but very enthusiastic, support. I myself claimed it to be "flawless" and a "perfect end to one of cinema's greatest ever trilogies" and Matt backed me up by pronouncing that it offers "some delicious Prison Film spoofery and a heart-warming finale that couldn't provide a better conclusion to the story." But alas, it was to no avail and Pixar find themselves with a bronze medal. Pixar honestly announced that the devastation this decision caused has stopped them making another movie ever again. Editor's note - that last sentence is almost certainly not true

2) THE SOCIAL NETWORK (David Fincher)

image
Who knew that a film about Facebook could be so good? Fincher knew, but then again, he knew he was making it. Finding itself on seven of the ten contributor's lists, there was no trouble in finding people who gave it a pixelated thumbs up and 'liked' it. Roger remarked that it tells its story with a "very neat, economical structure" and maintained that it is "the ideal candidate to send back through time as an illustration of ‘the future’"; while Clydefro found himself delayed by the snow so argued that "it's less the supposed era-defining qualities of Fincher's film that intrigue me than the undying, Sierra Madre-esque power struggles that emerge." It was Noel who perhaps had the definitive final word though, insisting that it's "a film about a subject that really should not work on the big screen – a testament then to David Fincher's genius that he is able to make an utterly compelling portrait of business and personal relationships in contemporary society." Hear hear.

1) INCEPTION (Christopher Nolan)

image
It was probably only ever going to be one film. The same film that restored our faith in the original summer blockbuster. That film was Inception and it was almost universally liked by all us Digital Fixers, practically an unheard of situation until moments after the meeting, someone piped up "pub?" prompting a geek-like "so say we all" response. It garnered so much praise that to pick and choose would be futile, so here are the gushing comments in full:

MS: "Mind bending, heartbreaking, beautifully filmed and exquisitely acted; confirms Christopher Nolan's place among the great directors of the past ten years."

GM: "A brilliantly cinematic, Mission: Impossible-esque adventure in to the world of dreams from Christopher Nolan, who is always on top of the story even when its Russian-doll structure gets increasingly complex. Terrific use of music and editing."

IS: "Six months on from its cinema release and people are still debating what that final scene means which goes to prove that you don't have to be dumb to go big. Epic in both scale and ideas, Inception was certainly 2010's most confusing 'blockbuster' but easily its most satisfying one."

RK: "Shuffling the deck of different ontological states to confound and entrance, this is no masterpiece like Mulholland Dr. or Synecdoche, New York, yet it still provides a distinctly above average sci-fi entertainment."

CJ: "Gourmet popcorn that earned its almost immediate (though quiet) backlash but still probably as enthralling as big budget, non-sequel movies get in this day and age."

MS: "A film that's very easy to over-analyse, it's not all that complex or intelligent really as far as narrative concerned, but technically it's an absolute marvel, offering spectacular visuals, remarkable editing tricks, and a note-perfect cast. This could very well be the most exciting film Christopher Nolan will ever make. I'm not prepared to put any money on that, though!"

DF: "Christopher Nolan keeps going from strength to strength, the best summer blockbuster in years."

In the interest of fair-play and to put to mind any unrest you may have about your favourite Digital Fixer if the final countdown is not what you came to expect from them, below are the full, unadulterated lists from everyone who participated in order of preference from 1 to 10.

Thanks for reading and hope you all have a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. We're off to recover what's left of our fading sanity before next year's meeting.


Mike Sutton
Inception
In The Electric Mist
Four Lions
The Killer Inside Me
Video Nasties
Scott Pilgrim Vs. The World
Piranha 3D
The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo
Shutter Island
The Expendables
Noel Megahey
I Am Love
Tsar
A Single Man
The Social Network
Tetro
Certified Copy
Vincere
City Of Life And Death
The Killer Inside Me
Kick-Ass
Gavin Midgley
Inception
Toy Story 3
The Social Network
The Illusionist
Another Year
Winter's Bone
The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo
Kick-Ass
Shutter Island
Four Lions
John White
The Secret In Their Eyes
A Prophet
Of Gods And Men
Mother
Revanche
Black Death
Four Lions
Kick-Ass
Bad Lieutenant: Port Of Call - New Orleans
Monsters
Emma Farley
Shutter Island
Whip It
Kick-Ass
The Arbor
Restrepo
Inception
Up In The Air
An Education
Tamara Drewe
Another Year
Ian Sandwell
Toy Story 3
Kick-Ass
Inception
Monsters
The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo
Four Lions
Scott Pilgrim Vs. The World
Buried
The Town
I Love You Phillip Morris
Roger Keen
Alice In Wonderland
Another Year
The Social Network
The Last Station
A Single Man
Inception
The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo
Mr. Nice
Invictus
Shutter Island
Clydefro Jones
Carlos
Black Swan
Winter's Bone
The Social Network
The American
Shutter Island
Inception
Vincere
The Fighter
The Town
Matt Shingleton
Toy Story 3
City Of Life And Death
The Road
The Social Network
Inception
A Prophet
Tetro
The Secret In Their Eyes
A Single Man
Scott Pilgrim Vs. The World
Dave Foster
Inception
Mother
The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo
Scott Pilgrim Vs. The World
Kick-Ass
How To Train Your Dragon
Toy Story 3
The Social Network
Monsters
Shutter Island
Gary Couzens
(alphabetical order)
Another Year
Beautiful Kate
Carlos
The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo
Kick-Ass
The Kids Are All Right
Samson & Delilah
The Social Network
Toy Story 3

Tags
Category Feature

Latest Articles