Donald Clarke

Whingeing about cinema and real life since 2009

Up sweeps the first Screenies Awards.

No more Cone of Shame for you, Dug. Eager for displacement activity from real work, your host finally got round to scrolling down the comments on the best-of the-year post and assembling a readers’ top 10 for 2009. The rules …

Fri, Dec 11, 2009, 22:59

   

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No more Cone of Shame for you, Dug.

Eager for displacement activity from real work, your host finally got round to scrolling down the comments on the best-of the-year post and assembling a readers’ top 10 for 2009. The rules were simple: I counted one vote for every positive comment made about a film. There was — somewhat surprisingly — just the one tie in the lower reaches and, benign dictator that I am, I used my casting vote to separate the two candidates. Here we go…

10. The Wrestler

9. A Serious Man

8. In the Loop

7. Anvil: The Story of Anvil

6. District 9

5. Inglourious Basterds

4. Moon

3. The Hurt Locker

2. Let the Right One In

1. Up.

The results confirm how very wise contributors to this “blog” are. Seven of the top 10 appeared in my own list and only one failed to make my “bubbling under” codicil. The one that got away, In the Loop, got four stars from me on release and could very easily have snuck into the lower reaches of the Screenwriter Ten. Hell, you could write this “blog” yourselves.

A few further points worth noting: the post was set up very shortly after A Serious Man was released, so its true position may be a place or so higher. Also, though I wasn’t convinced by Where the Wild Things Are, that picture may, I suspect, have picked up a few votes if it had emerged earlier. Then there’s Avatar and Nine. I am not yet allowed to reveal my opinions of either, but a couple of votes may, perhaps, have drifted that way too. It’s also worth considering that there were nearly as many negative comments about Inglourious Basterds as there were raves. Quentin’s flick thus wins the 2009 Marmite Award for the film you either love or hate.

At any rate, none of this is to take away from Pixar’s achievement with Up. The best animated feature Oscar the studio will (barring a miracle) pick up for the picture may mean more to them than this inaugural Screeny, but, in the era before Pixar emerged, it would have been hard to imagine any animated feature winning such an informal poll in The Irish Times. Pinocchio in 1940? Not, I think, over His Girl Friday, Rebecca, The Philadelphia Story and The Grapes of Wrath. I can’t imagine Bambi would have beaten Casablanca and The Magnificent Ambersons in 1942.

Anyway, it looks as if it will be a long time before John Lasseter and his crew will be forced to wear the Cone of Shame. Up, up and away.

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