Sunday, February 7, 2010

AFT Awards: Top 10 Scenes of the Year

This is a special category of the 3rd Annual AFT Film Awards, my own personal choices for the best in film of each year and the best in television of each season. The AFT Film Awards include the traditional Oscar categories and a number of additional specific honors. These are my ten favorite scenes of the year, listed in alphabetical order by film title. Click here to see previous years of this category. Beware minor spoilers for these films.

There are so many great moments and battle scenes in this film, but the coolest part was definitely when hard-ass Colonel Quaritch bailed out of his exploding ship while his arm was on fire.

Away We Go
The most delightful of the various model family visits was that to the home of crazy LN (Maggie Gyllenhaal), who terrifies and infuriates Bart so much that he feels the need to traumatize her child forever by taking the child for a wild ride in a stroller.

The Hurt Locker
Before Jeremy Renner’s William James ever set foot on the scene, Matt Thompson (Guy Pearce) undertook a valiant effort to diffuse a bomb that took his life in the powerful, tone-setting opening minutes of this film, leading to one of the most intense and lengthy stand-offs that doesn't obsess over action and instead just painfully, slowly happens.

The Hurt Locker
Out in the middle of nowhere, the unit encounters a band of friendly contractors led by Ralph Fiennes, but the peace doesn’t last long.

Inglourious Basterds
Colonel Hans Landa arrives at the home of Perrier LaPadite intent on finding hidden Jews in the chilling first scene of this film. Landa’s calm and conversation, compared with the terror on LaPadite’s face, makes it even more mesmerizing.

Inglourious Basterds
The Basterds meet with Bridget von Hammersmark in a bar filled with Nazis, and one arrives to interrogate the supposed captain about his origins. It’s a scene wrought with tension that’s equal parts terrifying and hilarious (watch the tail end of it here).

The Men Who Stare At Goats
As promised by the title, George Clooney’s Lyn Cassady takes down a goat with the sheer force of his mental prowess. The stunned look on the face of Major Holtz (Glenn Morshower) makes it all the more astounding.

Police, Adjective
After spending days following a suspect on his own authority and trying to decide whether he is truly guilty, Cristi learns the true meaning of police when his commanding officer forces him to look up words in the dictionary.

The corrupt cops shoot out one car’s tire and another car comes to a screeching halt behind it, and an uncomfortably long sequence begins with an immense amount of foreboding and a lot of swearing, shouting, and tears.

Almost no sound is present (or needed) in the opening minutes of this film, where a lifelong relationship is chronicled beautifully. It’s touching, heartbreaking, and gives the movie the heart that will fuel it for the rest of its running time.

No comments: