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Best New-to-me Movies and Television 2011

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Best Television Series
A Game of Thrones: Season 1 (2011)
Take HBO, whose television series are amazing, and give it one of the best fantasy franchises out there. Is anybody really surprised that this is the best series of the year, particularly for me, a longtime fantasy aficionado?

A Game of Thrones has its campy moments, for sure, but it manages to get the feel of the books just right. It also rectifies some of the hindsight issues with the books, such as the too small role for Tyrion (he doesn’t come into his own until midway through the second book, at least) and the extra foreshadowing of actual events that occur. All this in and well-shot visuals, including one of the coolest intros ever. Excuse me while I wipe up the fanboy drool.

Best Documentary
Winning Time: Reggie Miller vs. the New York Knicks (2010)
You know when a movie is good? When it does something that you never thought was possible. Documentaries, and to a lesser extent sports movies, usually take themselves so seriously and earnestly that there’s little space for humor. Winning Time breaks that mold. Reggie Miller in particular is a huge ham, and is a great interview. This is the best form of documentary, that film that’s able to educate, analyze, and entertain all in one go. I know it sounds boring, but it truly is one of the best sports movies I’ve seen, period.

Best Fiction
Moon (2009)
This is the best science fiction film I’ve seen since District 9, and one of the most unique. Only one actor ever appears on screen, and he not only carries the movie, but he plays a great part in a simultaneously subtle and transparent film. There’s obvious homage to 2001: A Space Oddyssey throughout this movie, but this movie does it better. 2001 is long, boring shots telling an infeasible story and eventually devolving into incomprehensible psychedelia. Moon is a tight-quarters think film that says something socially.

Honorable Mention
The Fighter (2010) - Was all ready to blow this off as another overrated Philadelphia sports movie. Couldn’t. One of the better sports movies out there.

Perfume: The Story of Murderer (2006) - Sometimes over-the-top plot, but truly interesting storytelling style and gorgeous visuals.

Rabbit Hole (2010) - One of the rare indie movies these days that doesn’t feel cookie cutter.

Worst Movies
G.I Joe: The Rise of Cobra (2009) - I should have listened to everyone else and avoided this, but the nostalgia made me see it anyway. Not good bad, not campy bad, not even action bad, this was straight up boring and terrible.

What Dreams May Come (1998) - This vision of the afterlife is true not to our religious culture, nor to our secular culture, but takes the worst parts of both.

Sunshine (2007) - What an overblown piece of trash. Cliche after cliche kept me from ever taking this movie seriously.

Cannibal: The Musical (1993) - This isn’t completely fair to compare this student film to Hollywood, but this was really, really unfunny.

And, of course, here’s the full list of movies and TV shows I’ve seen, with links to my reviews.
 

The Sound of Music: The hills are alive with the sound of Nazis
Deadwood: Season 2 - Further information for those cocksuckers

30 for 30 reviews: Without Bias, Muhammad and Larry

30 for 30 reviews: Winning Time: Reggie Miller vs. the New York Knicks, The Legend of Jimmy the Greek.

30 for 30 reviews: The Guru of Go

The Best of 2010 New-to-me Movies

What Dreams May Come - A Nightmare
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The fucking last season of Deadwood

Cannibal! The Musical: The Review

Cool Hand Luke: An Icon's Icon

Traitor: I'll watch anything with Don Cheadle in it

Never Say Never: Why I Cried During the Justin Bieber Movie

Wall Street: Charlie Sheen's not the crazy one here

Sunshine: Sans lollipops and rainbows

Moon: 2001 brought to 2009

30 for 30 reviews: Silly Little Game

30 for 30 reviews: The 16th Man

30 for 30 reviews: Run, Ricky, Run

Amadeus: Rock me, Salieri

X-Files Season 2

What Netflix has done for my TV consumption

The Office: Season 6

Ken Burns' Baseball

GI Joe: The Rise of Horrendous

The Pacific: As laconic as the ocean it's named after

The Beaver: Not as dirty as it sounds

Perfume: The Story of Age Differentiation

Lust, Caution: Review, Words

A Game of Thrones TV Show: HBO does it again

X Files: Season 3

The Odd Couple

30 for 30 reviews: Unmatched

30 for 30 reviews: House of Steinbrenner

30 for 30 reviews: The Birth of Big Air

Rabbit Hole: Not the kind of euphemism you're expecting

30 for 30 reviews: Pony Excess

30 for 30 reviews: King's Ransom

Revolver

30 for 30 reviews: The U

The Fighter: Contender and then some

30 for 30 reviews: The Band that Wouldn't Die

30 for 30 reviews: Winning Time

30 for 30 reviews: Straight Outta L.A.

Office Space

30 for 30 reviews: No Crossover

30 for 30 reviews: June 17th, 1994

30 for 30 reviews: Small Potatoes

X Files Season 4 and 5

Lord of the Rings Trilogy