- Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon
1. Tomorrow Night -- I always used to hate it when critics would pick some movie I never heard of as their number one, so please forgive me. Tomorrow Night is the tale of an uptight photo store owner with a fetish for rubbing his bare ass in ice cream. There's a lot more to it than that, but it becomes progressively more impossible to describe. Call the Cinematheque and ask them to screen it!
2. Unbreakable -- M. Night Shyamalan brilliantly dramatizes the intangible sadness that comes from knowing your life isn't on the right track and not knowing how to get it there. Samuel L. Jackson, playing against type, is hereby forgiven for Shaft.
3. A Moment of Innocence -- A film from Iran that isn't an endless meditation on silence, in which children walk around in the desert for an eternity. It's also the freshest movie about making a movie to come along in recent memory. Director Mohsen Makhmalbaf stars as himself, trying to dramatize an incident from his youth in which he stabbed a policeman. The movie is too clean to be documentary, but it blurs the line between fact and fiction.
4. Charlie's Angels -- Chicks. Kicking. Explosions. Three reasons why God invented movies.
5. The Specials -- What do superheroes do on their day off? According to this comedy, they just sit around the house and yell at each other. Thomas Haden Church gives the best deadpan since Adam West, and screenwriter James Gunn (Tromeo and Juliet) may be a genius.
6. Dinosaur -- Yeah, the gags were lame. It's Disney, so be glad the dinos didn't sing. Regardless of plot quibbles, the $200 million primeval landscape was one of the most breathtaking visions ever put on screen, and the story was surprisingly dark.
7. Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon -- You'll believe an underaged Asian hottie can fly.
8. Dark Days -- A Clive Barker concept come to life, and it's all true: There are people living in the darkness beneath the city, and they've made a movie to prove it. The documentary to see this year.
9. You Can Count on Me -- A movie about nothing, in the best possible sense. For everyone who's ever had a confused single mom.
10. Ratcatcher -- Simultaneously beautiful and ugly, harshly real and gorgeously surreal.