The best movies of 2008

2008 was an interesting year for movies. This year has given moviegoers men dressed in suits fighting crime, assassins with superhuman abilities and broken old men looking for redemption. Here is a top ten list of the best movies of 2008.


10) Wanted
“Wanted” is loosely based on a graphic novel by Mark Miller and J.G. Jones. This becomes Russian director Timur Bekmambetov’s (“Day Watch”) first American film with an all-star cast and amazing action combined with outstanding visual effects. A femme fatale assassin named Fox (Angelina Jolie) asserts herself into the life the man with the miserable life, Wesley Gibson (James McAvoy). She introduces him to The Fraternity, a secret society of assassins led by Sloan (Morgan Freeman), that trains Wesley to kill a rogue member of the Fraternity. The movie is funny and action-packed, with Oscar-winner Freeman delivering one of the best lines in the movie, if not the best quote of the decade.

wanted_wesley-0019) Iron Man
“Iron Man” became the first big summer blockbuster of the year and deservedly so. Stark is a multi-millionaire weapon designer who happens to get attacked in Afghanistan by his own weapons and kidnapped. Eventually, he makes his escape in a tin-man version of the Iron Man suit. Stark realizes that the error of his way and decides to create the technology that helped escape and adding neat additions to it. A great cast that features Oscar-nominee Terrance Howard (“Hustle & Flow”), Oscar-winner Gwyneth Paltrow (“Shakespeare in Love) and Jeff Bridges (“The Big Lebowski”), awesome action mixed with great visual effects and a lot of humor defiantly makes “Iron Man” one of the best movies this year.

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8) Tropic Thunder
When three of Hollywood’s biggest stars (Ben Stiller, Jack Black and Robert Downey, Jr.) head into the jungles of Vietnam to shoot a war movie, they have no idea how real things can get. There were a lot of questionable things going into the production of Stiller’s new comedy that features RDJ returning to his second summer outing in black face. Seeing the final results of “Tropic Thunder” puts any future concerns to rest, except when Disability Advocates came to the world premiere of the movie, opposing the use of the word “retard”.

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7) WALL-E
Andrew Stanton, the highly acclaimed director of “Finding Nemo”, transports you to several hundred years into the future where a determined robot with emotions falls in live another robot and follows her into space. This becomes a first in animation as it sends the moviegoers a really deep message and ominous warning of what will happen if we do not take care of our planet.

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6) The Curious Case of Benjamin Button
This movie has humor, great visual effects and makeup, some action and dramatic elements and a love story that spans 80 years. Brad Pitt plays Benjamin Button, a man who was born 80 years old in 1919 and is abandoned by his father (Jason Flyming), only to be adopted by a care worker (Taraji P. Henson) at a New Orleans retirement home. As Benjamin ages, he grows younger each year that passes. This truly is director David Fincher’s (“Fight Club”) masterpiece that reunites him with Pitt for the third time for a story about the joys of life and the sadness of death.

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5) Milk
Director Gus Van Sant abandons his experimental days into a more suppressed, down-to-earth film about the first openly gay politician in the United States. “Milk” chronicles the rise of Harvey Milk (Sean Penn) who transforms from a storefront owner to an advocate for gay rights. This has one of the best ensemble acting this year that features terrific performances by Penn, Josh Brolin as a rival city supervisor, James Franco as Milk’s lover and Emile Hirsch as a young activist. “Milk” is an important history lesson from where we were then in the country to where we our now.

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4) The Wrestler
Mickey Rourke is back and in fine form as he delivers one of the best performances of the year as has-been professional wrestler who retires from the sport thanks to a severe heart attack. Feeling like his life is worthless, he looks to reconcile with her estranged daughter (Evan Rachel Wood) and begins an enticing romance with a stripper (Marisa Tomei). This is a departure from Darren Aronofsky’s earlier films, but it works as “The Wrestler” becomes a film that marks an impressive comeback for Rourke and another remarkable performance by Tomei.

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3) Gran Torino
Eastwood makes his first acting appearance since 2004’s “Million Dollar Baby” as he also directs and produces this film. Eastwood plays Walt Kowalski, a retired auto worker and former Korean War veteran who is the only white American occupant in his neighborhood.
He has recently became a widower and currently despises the Hmong immigrants from Southeast Asia, which they are his new neighbors. Eventually he becomes a reluctant hero to the neighborhood and forms a relationship with the neighbors next door that changes their lives. There is one thing that I can guarantee and that Eastwood will defiantly get an Oscar nomination for this role and a possible win.

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2) Slumdog Millionaire
The movie to beat for sure in the Oscar race for Best Picture is this film, “Slumdog Millionare”. The film is about a young man (Dev Patel) from the slums of Mumbai who is on the verge of winning 20 million rupees on India’s “Who Wants To Be A Millionaire?”. When he is suspected of cheating, he is taken to a police station and interrogated by a police inspector, he reveals who he got the answers and telling the inspector that each question that he answered on the show was a key element to his life story and a long-lost love he has been looking for.

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  1. The Dark Knight

Christopher Nolan’s “The Dark Knight” works as a great crime thriller, making you forget that the film is of comic-book origins. The story takes place a year after the events of “Batman Begins”, Batman (Christian Bale) continuing his war on crime with the help of Lt. Gordon (Gary Oldman) and District Attorney Harvey Dent (Aaron Eckhart) by destroying organized crime in Gotham City. However, things turn topsy-turvy when the Joker (Heath Ledger) threatens to kill people each day if Batman does not unmask himself. I can guarantee that Ledger will be honored with the Oscar for his performance and that “The Dark Knight” could be win best picture, director and handful of gold if “Slumdog Millionaire” does not.

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