Best of Film 2011

I’m fortunate enough to belong to a critics circle that votes on the best film has to offer each year. It’s particularly satisfying in a year like this one when the mainstream media overlooked so much incredible work for easily digestible fare by names we’ve all grown familiar with. Over the next month my friends at The Muriel Awards will be posting the results in all major categories but I thought I’d share my personal ballot for those interested. It’s no easy task ranking something so subjective and I went back and forth on several categories. My basic criteria when composing my list is originality, individual excellence, longevity, lasting impression and degree of difficulty. Despite not being very  impressed with the majority of the films nominated for awards I did think this was a particularly good year for film and there were several movies  like Martha Marcy May Marelene, Take Shelter, The Ides of March, In A Better World, Ramaprt and The Tree of Life that could have easily made my list in a less crowded field. Here are my final selections:

Best Feature-Length Film
1. Drive

2. Beginners

3. Melancholia

4. Shame

5. The Double Hour

6. Incendies

7. Tinker Tailor Solider Spy

8. Another Earth

9. Moneyball

10. The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo

Other categories listed after the jump:

Best Lead Performance, Male
1. Michael Fassbender – Shame

2. Woody Harrelson – Rampart

3. Michael Shannon – Take Shelter

4. Ewan McGregor – Beginners

5. Brad Pitt – Moneyball
Best Lead Performance, Female
1. Rooney Mara – Girl With The Dragon Tattoo

2. Brit Marling – Another Earth

3. Elizabeth Olsen – Martha Marcy May Marlene

4. Kirsten Dunst – Melancholia

5. Jessica Chastain – The Tree of Life

Best Supporting Performance, Male
1. Christopher Plummer – Beginners

2. Jonah Hill – Moneyball

3. William Mapother – Another Earth

4. Kiefer Sutherland – Melancholia

5. Albert Brooks – Drive

Best Supporting Performance, Female
1. Carey Mulligan – Shame

2. Mélissa Désormeaux-Poulin – Incendies

3. Charlotte Gainsbourg – Melancholia

4. Sarah Paulson – Martha Marcy May Marlene

5. Robin Wright – Rampart

Best Director
1. Lars von Trier – Melancholia

2. Nicholas Winding Refn – Drive

3. Steve McQueen – Shame

4. Mike Mills – Beginners

5. David Fincher – The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo

Best Original Screenplay
1. Incendies

2. The Double Hour

3. Beginners

4. Another Earth

5. Shame

Best Adapted Screenplay
1. Moneyball

2. Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy

3. The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo

4. Drive

5. The Ides of March

Best Cinematography
1. In A Better World

2. The Tree of Life

3. Drive

4. Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy

5. Melancholia

Best Music
(original, adapted, or compiled)

1. Drive

2. Beats, Rhymes & Life

3. The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo

4. Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy

5. Another Earth

Best Ensemble Performance
1. Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy

2. Melancholia

3. Drive

4. Girl With The Dragon Tattoo

5. Incendies

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