More of a movie apocalypse than the realism of The Road, with arse kicking action, superb visuals, and a great soundtrack. It's not perfect, and the central theme might turn some away, but I really quite enjoyed it from start-to-finish.
Shutter Island (27/3/2010):
A B-Movie genre flick with the talent and budget of an A-Movie. Scorsese excelled at forboding atmosphere and paranoid asylum-bound mystery, while DiCaprio delivered yet another quality performance.
Kick Ass (4/4/2010):
Superheroes that aren't so super, but who cause a lot of violent havoc and have filthy mouths. Pure, unrestrained entertainment. Sequel please.
A mind-bending blockbuster with a thunderous score, the best trailer of the year, and the ability to mix wow-factor visuals with huh?-factor smarts.
The A-Team (1/8/2010):
One of the pleasant surprises of the year. I thought it was going to be a disaster upon first hearing about it, but it grew on me gradually, and then proved to be an thoroughly enjoyable action romp.
The Expendables (22/8/2010):
I prefered Rambo, but the sheer bad-assery of this 1980s throwback actioner employing modern techniques provided an addictive dose of adrenaline. Plus Terry Crews' shotgun was amazing.
Scott Pilgrim Vs. The World (28/9/2010):
It's a shame it didn't do a bit better at the box office, but it was clear from the first frames that this was going to be a cult hit all the way. This unappologetically niche flick has kept coming back into my mind over the months since its summer release, and I look forward to delving deeper into the Pilgrim universe with the graphic novels.
Jackass 3D (7/11/2010):
The whole 3D thing hasn't evolved beyond a flashy visual gimmick, and I doubt it ever truly will, so a bunch of idiots hurting themselves and flinging various bodily fluids at the camera was an ideal use for this technology. An ideal audience participation experience, filled with absurdly gross-out moments.
Toy Story 3 (Blu-Ray) (23/11/2010):
Perhaps the best one of the three, but certainly tied with the original, this series closer provided guffaws and lumps-in-throats in equal measure. A visual treat with a heart-felt script to match. It tugged on your heart strings with Pixar's perfected storytelling skills and was a definite 2010 Top Five moment. That sequence in the final act alone was enough to earn it endless kudos.
Tron Legacy (2/1/2011):
The script could have used a touch more shading for certain aspects, but as a visual and aural experience it was second-to-none for 2010. The 3D wasn't employed to particularly involving effect as the neon glitz of The Grid overtook any depth-of-field snazziness with ease, and the soundtrack by Daft Punk was pulse-poundingly perfect. I really enjoyed this flick, and while the original was a very important moment in cinematic history, this sequel really delivered the goods for me.
The Road (31/1/2010):
This is exactly how the apocalypse would be in real life - unlike The Book of Eli's darkly entertaining movie-apocalypse - a harrowing and tough experience. It didn't quite have the hauntingly memorable quality of Cormac McCarthy's superb book, but the heartfelt father/son tale translated perfectly to devestatingly moving effect. It's a film for fathers to deal with the fact that one day they'll be gone and their offspring will have to fend for themselves, and it's a film for sons to deal with the realisation that one day their guiding light will be extinguished. Like I said - devestatingly moving.
Perhaps I had amped it up in my head too much since the release of the thoroughly enjoyable Grindhouse, but Machete didn't quite fire on all cylinders after an uproariously entertaining opening. However, despite the slight disappointment, it was filled with that gleeful grindhouse vibe and I'm sure I'll enjoy it time-and-again on home video.
The Town (26/9/2010):
Ben Affleck's heist thriller might have treaded similar boards to many other heist thrillers, but it's honest and detailed approach to Boston's criminal class, and the three superbly crafted heists made it stand above its peers who have come out in the wake of influential flicks like Michael Mann's Heat.
Back to the Future (re-release, 3/10/2010):
I didn't include this in the 2010 Top Ten as it's a re-release, but it was easily one of - if not the - best cinema-going experience of 2010. The movie is perfect already, so it was glorious to see this life-long favourite on the big screen, but more than that it was heart warming to see young parents bring their young children to see this film that had been so important to them and successfully pass their enjoyment onto their offspring.