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Richard Roeper's Best (and Worst) of 2008

I will give Richard Roeper credit. His year in review is by far the most thorough and maybe even the most instructive of these critics' lists that I've seen. He doesn't just rank movies, he explores the past year with the real curiosity of a journalist and the real passion of a fan.

Now, there are things I disagree with, but nothing major. I would wonder why he chose to do a list of 25 if his articles wasn't so exhaustive. He does not, unlike Roger Ebert, say he simply can't bear to cut ten movies out because the year was so incredible. And, he takes a shot at another critic, which is usually not the order of the day, blasting Shawn Edwards for turning a trick to get in the TV ads for Four Christmases. All Shawn Edwards isn't so much a "critic."

And by and large, I'd say his rankings of the top 25 movies of 2008 shows a lot of variety, and he doesn't elevate too many films that don't deserve it, and like me, he thinks Slumdog Millionaire and In Bruges are two of the year's five best.

But Roeper has also been considerate enough - or inconsiderate enough, depending on your perspective - to do a Ten Worst list, and I've always thought those are valuable. There were some real black eyes this year, so it's worthwhile to see that list, too. As is our practice when it comes to these critics' lists, we don't pick them apart or wonder why, in this case, Frost/Nixon isn't in Roeper's top ten. It's his list, he saw the movies just like I did, and this is what he came away with.

But if you'd like to comment, feel free.

And to show you just how complete his 2008 recap is, we'll kick off the countdown with a ranking I totally agree with...

The Totally Sexist List of the Three Most Beautiful Newcomers
Freida Pinto - Slumdog Millionaire
Olga Kurylenko - Quantum of Solace
Odette Yustman - Cloverfield

The Top 25
Slumdog Millionaire
The Dark Knight
The Wrestler
In Bruges
I've Loved You So Long
Gran Torino
The Visitor
Forgetting Sarah Marshall
Frozen River
Snow Angels
The Reader
Seven Pounds
Iron Man
Vicky Cristina Barcelona
Henry Poole Is Here
Burn After Reading
The Curious Case of Benjamin Button
The Bank Job
Tropic Thunder

The Bottom Ten
The Love Guru
What Happens in Vegas
The Women
10,000 B.C.
88 Minutes
Funny Games
Fly Me to the Moon
Over Her Dead Body
Harold and Kumar Escape from Guantanamo Bay
You Don't Mess With the Zohan


Reader Comments (4)

Did he forget "Disaster Movie" in the bottom ten

Friday, December 12, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterJulian Francis

No. Disaster wasn't officially screened. I powered through it, much to my chagrin, and I'm sure a few other critics went on opening weekend, but you can't really blame the guy for not going after having to see The Love Guru. That one's bad enough.

Saturday, December 13, 2008 | Registered CommenterGet The Big Picture

I would add 'Righteous Kill' to The Bottom 10 List and bump Zohan into limbo.

Saturday, December 13, 2008 | Unregistered Commenterlara Petersen

I agree with most of his list. I do disagree with some of the bottom 10...10,000 B.C. is a guilty pleasure, and Zohan...well, it's fun enough. But I applaud this thoughtful list.

Thursday, December 18, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterSam Mills

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