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The Films of 2011: Top 25

2011 has been a strong year for cinema - there's been some unforgettable films, ranging from looks at the world of ballet, sex addiction, finding oneself or just generally being a badass Nicolas Cage from hell. Here's 25 of Silver Screen Slags favourites of the year - going by their UK releases (unless previewed prior to this). Please look in awe at the horrible logo, made using all of my skills in Microsoft Paint.


25. CRAZY, STUPID, LOVE 
Why?
 Mature, yet highly entertaining romantic comedy with standout performances from Steve Carrell and Julianne Moore. This is the romcom for those that sigh at the genre.


24. INSIDIOUS 
Why? Undeniably creepy, old fashioned haunted house tale with some absolutely chilling visuals and scares which allow you to forgive it's messy ending.



23. BEGINNERS 
Why? Completely touching and heartfelt story with quirky direction from Mike Mills and an acting masterclass from Christopher Plummer. 


22. IMMORTALS 
Why? It's a highly entertaining swords and sandals epic with beautifully striking direction from Tarsem Singh.


21. TRIAGE 
Why? Triage a compelling anti-war drama that does not shy away from being brutal and truthful. There's also highly overlooked performances from Colin Farrell and Sir Christopher Lee.


20. FOOTLOOSE 
Why? It's a much needed update of the dated original and possibly the feel-good film of the year. The new young cast adapt well to the roles in particular Julianne Hough and Kenny Wormald. It's absolutely great fun.


19. THE KING'S SPEECH 
Why? Whilst looking back on The Kings Speech I feel it slightly overrated but it's hard to brush away my original response after seeing the film. It's a compelling drama, finely directed by Tom Hooper and superbly acted by Colin Firth and Geoffrey Rush where we really feel a part of the story.


18. RED STATE 
Why? Not the film I'd hoped but it's as original and thought provoking as you're likely to get in the genre. It's hard not to smirk as Kevin Smith brings down extremist Christians down a peg or two. Michael Parks captivates as the head of the family and is completely detestable.


17. MIDNIGHT IN PARIS 
Why? I was torn between adding this or You Will Meet A Tall Dark Stranger, both charming and witty pictures from Woody Allen. Midnight In Paris won me over with it's plentiful literary references and sheer fun, old fashioned atmosphere.


16. DRIVE ANGRY 
Why? Nicolas Cage escapes from hell to hunt down a Satanic cult who plan on sacrificing his granddaughter, that's why. This is badass Cage at his finest and it is also the best use of 3D I've seen at the cinema this year, truly making Avatar look like a piece of shit - actually I think Avatar did that itself.


15. THE DIVIDE 
Why? This a disturbing and thought provoking look at humans in confinement after a nuclear attack on America. It clings to you for weeks after, it's hard to forget about this intense piece of science fiction.


14. TRUE GRIT 
Why? Overshadowed by The King's Speech and Black Swan despite being a magnificent adaptation of the Charles Portis novel. This is one of the best westerns since Clint Eastwood's Unforgiven with faultlesly crafted by the Coen Brothers and pitch-perfect appearances from Jeff Bridges and Hailee Steinfeld.


13. SCREAM 4 
Why? As a huge Scream fan, it felt like Scream 4 was years coming and fortunately did not disappoint. It's a return to form for Wes Craven and features a well written script from Kevin Williamson  and a bloody good horror sequel.


12. THE FIGHTER
Why? It's a powerful family drama, totally exhilarating from start to finish and features Mark Wahlberg's best performance since Boogie Nights.


11. COUNTRY STRONG
Why? It may be cliche ridden with a messy narrative but Country Strong is fun, highly entertaining with the best cinematic soundtrack of the year. 




10. TINKER TAILOR SOLDIER SPY
Why? TTSS is a nostalgic trip back to the golden age of cold war espionage cinema. Tomas Alfredson creates a brooding, smokey atmosphere and creates genuine mystery and intrigue. There's also stellar performances from Gary Oldman, John Hurt and Colin Firth.




9. BLACK SWAN
Why? It's an intense, disturbing melodrama about the ballet world (and I can tell you that there aren't many of these). Darren Aronofsky's direction is bold and often strangely beautiful.


8. THE BANG BANG CLUB
Why? Another overlooked film in our countdown is The Bang Bang Club, it's an intelligent and thought-provoking look at the end of Apartheid that is not afraid to ask some controversial questions.




7. SHAME
Why? Extremely powerful glimpse into sex addiction and self destruction with faultless performances from Michael Fassbender and Carey Mulligan. Steve McQueen directs with a stark realism.


6. THE SKIN I LIVE IN
Why? Pedro Almodovar's film is visually breathtaking, painstakingly crafted work of genius. One of the most interesting of the year.


5. MELANCHOLIA
Why? Lars Von Trier's vision is intense in this terrifyingly realistic look at the end of the world. It's also a showcase for the talents of the magnificent Charlotte Gainsbourg and some astounding visuals from it's director. 




4. THE WAY 
Why? This is inspirational and well-crafted drama at it's finest. Estevez's film is thoughtful and emotive as is it's pitch-perfect lead performance from the Martin Sheen.




3. THE DEVIL'S DOUBLE
Why? Dominic Cooper is unbelievable in this dual role lead in this gritty drama. May not leave you feeling enlightened about Iraq but it's a hugely enjoyable ride.




2. MY WEEK WITH MARILYN
Why? British drama at it's finest that showcases another side to Hollywood Icon, Marilyn Monroe. It is captivating, nostalgic entertainment with powerhouse performances from Michelle Williams and Kenneth Branagh. 


1. DRIVE
Why? Drive is a pumped up blend of retro action splashed with arthouse elements. The extreme violence an highly visual direction from Nicolas Winding Refn alongside some remarkable performances make Drive a very special film.


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