Sunday, December 30, 2007

Top 10 Best Movies of 2007

The year of 2007 was filled with lots of ups and downs for me. From stepping down from my first full-time job, to moving to Arizona to accept a new and exciting ministry opportunity, it's been a roller coaster of emotion. These 10 films seem to capture my year perfectly, with a tight balance between the hilarious and the somber, romance and tragedy, darkness and light. And for some reason, there's an ongoing theme of pregnancy....

10. The Kite Runner I only saw this film a few days ago, but it has already left an impact on me. The book is a powerful story of redemption, and the film is wonderfully shot against a beautiful Afghani landscape. Read my recent review here.

9. Rescue Dawn Written and directed by Werner Herzog, Rescue Dawn is a story about Dieter Dangler (expertly acted by Christian Bale), a POW during the Vietnam War. The real-life story of Dangler's imprisonment and subsequent escape from a Laos prison camp is intense and haunting. The film is slow-paced, which only furthers the atmosphere of psychological trial endured by the film's characters.

8. The Namesake This story about an Indian family's move to America follows Gogol (Kal Penn) as he attempts to navigate growing up in two drastically different cultures--India and New York. I found it fascinating to watch a family's journey of 25+ years as they struggle with holding onto the past as they embrace their future. Wonderful coming-of-age film.

7. Hot Fuzz From the same guys who did Shaun of the Dead, Hot Fuzz is basically every cop movie ever made...on crack. With dozens of references and inferences to stereotypical cop movies--my favorite is Point Break--and some of the craziest action sequences, this movie is hilarious (and not for the faint of heart).

6. Zodiac Directed by David Fincher, this film is not what you would expect, which left many viewers disappointed. It is not a film about a serial killer--though that is the basic premise--as much as it is a film about an obsession with an unanswerable question. The film leaves you feeling exactly how the characters feel. Based on true-life characters and events, this film was both creepy and thought-provoking.

5. Knocked Up A film about an unwanted pregnancy, Knocked Up has some of the funniest dialogue written in years. Watching irresponsible people (a goofy Seth Rogan) struggling with the weighty consequences of pregnancy was both hilarious and moving. This honest-yet-crass film was surprisingly sweet.

4. Waitress Another film about an unexpected pregnancy, the writer-director of Waitress, Adrienne Shelly, was tragically killed before the film's release. But her final film leaves a touching legacy. A small-town waitress (Keri Russell, in a perfect role) struggles with a desire for freedom from her seemingly insignificant life. This film was delightful.

3. God Grew Tired of Us This powerful documentary about Sudanese refugees adjusting to life in America was phenomenal. This warm, touching film hits every emotion as the directors follow the story of four men struggling to help their home country while living thousands of miles away. Read my review here.

2. Atonement The significance of this film lies in its final 15 minutes (which I won't spoil for you!). It could simply have been a moving romantic story about love and the consequences of childhood choices. But the film also addresses deep metaphysical issues about reality, history, and our own story. Plus, the cinematography is absolutely stunning. Read some more of my thoughts here.

and the best movie I've seen in 2007 is....

1. Juno The final unwanted pregnancy film on this list! Directed by Jason Reitman and starring Ellen Page, Juno is a remarkable film about a remarkable teen girl dealing with an unexpected pregnancy and choosing to give up the baby for adoption. The dialogue is some of the wittiest and best-written stuff I've seen all year, and the movie made me laugh out loud in the theater more than any other this year. And it's not only funny; it's smart, ironic, and touching. It's the perfect balance of silliness and seriousness. Loved it. And you probably will too.


  1. Great list. So funny how we say the same things about the movies we have in common. Still, quite a few on your list that I didn't get to see yet, so I look forward to possibly viewing them.

  2. Everyone, go check out Cameron's list by copying and pasting this into your browser: