my top ten movies of 2006

in the realm of cinema, 2006 was a year much like 2005. the first half of the year sucked in an extreme way, while the last half turned out to be quite good. i remember thinking, when lady in the water came out in july: wow, we may finally get to see a decent film. (a couple of exceptions: thank you for smoking was released in april and was really good. a scanner darkly was released in may and was really good as well. maybe i should say the drought started abating in late spring).

anyway, here is my list. it's definitely not a "best of 2006" list, as i am no pro film critic or analyst and don't pretend to be. these are the movies i enjoyed and/or appreciated the most. a lot of the movies in this list were ripped to shreds by many reviewers; but who cares, right? (i've noticed my tastes diverging from a lot of the "critics" now anyway.)

1. children of men (alfonso cuarón)
2. pan's labyrinth (guillermo del toro)
3. stranger than fiction (marc forster)
4. the good shepherd (robert deniro)
5. lady in the water (m. night shyamalan)
6. little miss sunshine (jonathan dayton/valerie faris)
7. the departed (martin scorsese)
8. a scanner darkly (richard linklater)
9. babel (alejandro gonzález iñárritu)
10. the prestige (christopher nolan)

honorable mentions: thank you for smoking (jason reitman), borat: cultural learnings of america for make benefit glorious nation of kazakhstan (larry charles), cars (john lasseter), the illusionist (neil burger)

i'd love to hear your thoughts on this list, or how your own list differs.....

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