Aaron Brummet | Movies

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Since so many "Best Of’s" come across as highly arbitrary, I’ve decided to keep this as honest as possible. I make no claims that these are the best to be released in 2007, or that the list is undebatable/all-inclusive/anything more than personal preference (for example, I didn’t get the chance to see the critical darling Once this year, so as great as it likely is, it wouldn’t be fair to include it.) In fact, I’ve even foregone an outright numbering system, as I don’t feel it’s quite fair to rank a biographical art film against a star-studded Hollywood comedy. The "2007" tag is based on the work’s nationwide U.S. release date. Additionally, in the interest of brevity, I’ve kept each exposition to a sentence or two. With that in mind, here are the top ten movies I saw in 2007.

My Favorite Movies of 2007

1. No Country for Old Men
The Coen Brothers’ magnum opus uses flawless mood setting, an absence of music, and fantastic performances from Javier Bardem and Tommy Lee Jones to provide a haunting meditation on the presence of evil in a world where justice is not always served.

2. Pan’s Labyrinth
Guillermo del Toro does wonders with this legitimately creepy, beautifully acted film. It plays like a true fantasy nightmare, and conveys a sense of delicate care not often found in the genre.

3. Hot Fuzz
Simon Pegg, Edgar Wright, and Nick Frost should work together forever.

4. 3:10 to Yuma
The leader of the mini-resurgence for Westerns, this remake covered all of the best themes of the genre (ethics, greed, justice, redemption), and remained enthralling throughout. Also noteworthy is a show-stealing performance by Ben Foster.

5. Freedom Writers
Call it a sappy retread of Dangerous Minds if you will, but this film provided real hope and inspiration, and a number of genuinely touching scenes.

6. The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford
Beautiful in its shots, scenery, acting (particularly Casey Affleck), and Nick Cave’s score. If you can handle the incredibly slow pacing, this take on hero worship and the fickleness of celebrity is a gem.

7. I Am Legend
This tale of survival and sacrifice combines the best qualities of 28 Days Later, Signs, and Cast Away and ponders questions of existence and motivation. Both the physical and psychological traumas of Will Smith’s Job-like character are addressed superbly.

8. Beowulf
Though Angelina Jolie’s nudity was an unnecessary marketing ploy, this visually stunning film created a haunting Grendel while telling a story of pride, choice and redemption that was, in honesty, more interesting than its epic source material.

9. Ocean’s Thirteen
It may have taken 13 of them to overcome the slop of Ocean’s Twelve, but I’m glad Clooney and Co. decided to go for it. Particularly glorious is the Malloy brothers’ leading a revolution at a Mexican factory.

10. Sunshine

This overlooked work combines Danny Boyle’s masterful exploration of human nature with an epic and stunning awe for the sun and the value of life. | Aaron Brummet

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