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“Best” films isn’t really a correct term for these lists but it’s the one everyone uses. There’s a big difference between “Best” and “Favorite”. A few lists attempt to do a true best list but opinion always plays a part in judging art and that changes any list from truly best to favorite. Other best lists are easier to write but when it comes to art a true best list is a tough one.

It’s with that in mind that I compiled this list. I’m not going to go into huge detail about what each film is about and I’m not going to write a thousand words defending my choices. That’s food for discussion. I will try to share my criteria for my own best list. The first part is simple: was the story compelling. That’s fairly self explanatory I believe. Even more simply put; was the story good. Next is was the film well executed which includes directing, acting, special fx, score, editing, basically everything that goes into the creation of the film. The final element I kept in mind as I compiled my list is how innovative was the film? How much of an impact did the film make on the art of filmmaking. Did the film change the game in some way? All of these factors came together to help me build my list.

So here are my top 10 films of 2009. Feel free to comment about the list or share your own. If you think I’m nuts then share it in the comments and we’ll discuss. At any rate, here they are:

  1. Avatar Directed By James Cameron (Editorial)
  2. Paranormal Activity Directed by Oren Peli (Film Review)
  3. District 9 Directed By Neill Blomkamp
  4. Watchman Directed by Zack Snyder (Film Review)
  5. Star Trek Directed by JJ Abrams (Film Review)
  6. Inglorious Basterds Directed By Quentin Tarantino (Webcast Discussion)
  7. The Road Directed by John Hillcoat
  8. Drag Me to Hell Directed by Sam Raimi
  9. Zombieland Directed by Ruben Fleischer
  10. Antichrist Directed by Lars Von Trier

Here’s a bonus list, my top 10 guilty pleasures of 2009. Yes these films weren’t the best but they offered up some entertainment so here they are:

  1. Ninja Assassin Directed by James McTeigue (Webcast Discussion)
  2. Fanboys Directed by Kyle Newman
  3. Taken Directed by Pierre Morel (Film Review)
  4. Halloween II Directed by Rob Zombie
  5. Chocolate Directed by Prachya Pinkaew
  6. Crank 2 High Voltage Directed by Mark Neveldine (Webcast Discussion)
  7. Underworld: Rise of the Lycons Directed by Patrick Tatopoulos
  8. Orphan directed by Jaume Collet-Serra
  9. GI Joe: The Rise of Cobra Directed by Stephen Sommers
  10. X-Men Origins: Wolverine Directed by Gavin Hood

To hear me and other CineGeek writers discuss this list as well as their top 10 lists check out this episode of the CineGeek Webcast!