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Now in our eighth calendar year!
PCR # 354  (Vol. 8, No. 1)  This edition is for the week of January 1--7, 2007.

This Week's PCR
Movie Review
The Top 10 Movies of 2006

Commentary by:
Michael A. Smith

Movies are rated 0 to 4 stars

theater seats


LA FLORIDIANA
2006: The Year in Retrospect  by William Moriaty
MOVIE REVIEW
"Little Children"  by Mike Smith
The Top 10 Movies of 2006  by Mike Smith
FILMLOOK
An Open Letter To The Publishers of Creative Loafing  by Paul Guzzo
ODDSERVATIONS
A Message from PUTZO, the Clown Who Loves Lousy Fandom!....Don Dohler is Gone  by Andy Lalino
MIKE'S RANT
What A Swinger....So Does Billy Preston Own "Get Back"?....Don Dohler....Indy 4....Whatever Happened To..? Chapter 1: Tim McIntire  by Mike Smith
LETTERS
Archives of Nolan's Pop Culture Review
Archives 2007
Archives 2006
Archives 2005
Archives 2004
Archives 2003
Archives 2002
Archives 2001
Archives 2000
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As 2006 gives way to 2007, it's time for my annual ten best list. I'm often asked how I rate the films I see. I used to say that the highest rating, four stars, meant this was a film I'd want to own. However, in looking through my DVD collection, titles such as "Road House" and "Sgt Pepper's Lonely Heart's Club Band" may make that explanation moot. Call them guilty pleasures. I guess the best way to explain my ratings are as such:

One star Wow, there's (insert film running time here) that I'll never get back.
Two stars Nice try.
Three stars      Very good. I may see this one again soon.
Four stars I wish I could watch this one again NOW.

Hope that helps.

Here are the 10 films that I thought were the best of the past year. Some, like "Letters From Iwo Jima," have not yet opened wide. With the exception of the first film, they are in no particular order.

UNITED 93
Almost presented as a documentary, director Paul Greengrass' film tackled a subject many said shouldn't be explored. Using relatively unknown actors, as well as many of the actual government employees who worked on 9/11, this film will be remembered as one of the best of this decade.

LITTLE CHILDREN
An intense, emotional roller coaster ride through a small family community.

LETTERS FROM IWO JIMA
Clint Eastwood's bookend to "Flags of Our Fathers" shows us that Japanese wives and mothers loved their sons, too.

THE DEPARTED
Is there any other director who can do crime drama like Martin Scorsese? Here's a hint...no.

DREAMGIRLS
Who said the movie musical was dead? A brilliant rendition of the classic Broadway show featuring Jennifer Hudson in this year's star making performance.

LITTLE MISS SUNSHINE
If there were an award for best film about a dysfunctional family, this would take first prize! Along with "Bobby," this years best ensemble cast.

BORAT
Sacha Baron Cohen bravely stays in character no matter what in a film that said much more about America then many of us want to admit.

BABEL
Brad Pitt and Cate Blanchett are the big names but the star here is Japanese actress Rinko Kikuchi, who bares her soul and more in this interwoven story that takes place, literally, all over the world.

BOBBY
Writer/director Emilio Estevez assembled an all star cast to look back on that fateful day in June 1968. The last 10 minutes are among the most inspirational of the year.

CASINO ROYALE
James Bond is back. Kind of. Daniel Craig shows us how Mr. Bond earned his double-O in the best action film of the year.

And, if I may be allowed a Guilty Pleasure...

ROCKY BALBOA
Like the title character, Sylvester Stallone fought many a battle to bring the Italian Stallion back to the big screen one last time. Bye, Rock. I'm going to miss you.


This week's article, "The Top 10 Movies of 2006" is ©2007 by Michael A. Smith.  All graphics this page are creations of Nolan B. Canova, ©2007, all rights reserved. All contents of "Nolan's Pop Culture Review" are ©2007 by Nolan B. Canova.