Monday, December 31, 2007

The Year in Visuals (Film & TV)

I don't watch much TV or go to enough movies, but I do have an opinion on both.

Best of the idiot box...

Best Night of TV Shows: Tie - Thursdays on NBC and Sundays on Fox

The most hilariously irreverent television (featuring live actors) happens Thursday nights on NBC. NBC features My Name Is Earl, starring my favorite skater-turned-comedic actor, Jason Lee. Tina Fey's (my current geek crush) 30 Rock gives an unbelievably hilarious behind-the-scenes looks at sketch TV. Last but definitely not least is the American version of
The Office which I believe surpasses its British forefather. R's and my favorite show, Scrubs, rounds out the evening of hilarity as sexual innuendo, political jokery, and slapstick make this show an ingenious addition to an already solid lineup.

Sundays on Fox have been great for a long time thanks to the unkillable monsters known as The
Simpsons (read in a sing-songy voice). Sure the show is not what it used to be, but it's still better than 99% of the shows on TV. Then there's the other old-timer, King of the Hill which is always ready to share some witty take on current events through a Mike Judge lens. The two-headed beast that is Family Guy and American Dad make the night complete. Seth McFarlane's social commentary is both offensive and biting in a way not found outside South Park.

Show that I'm still somehow obsessed with but rarely mention it on this blog:
Yes, I'm
a "Lostie". I became obsessed after watching the first two seasons on DVD over a summer and suffered through much of a lackluster third season just to see if they ever get off that damn island. I'm really looking forward to the show's return this coming month.

Lifetime Achievement Award: South Park
This show still cracks me up. It amazes me how much they can get away with...even if it is cable TV. While most Matt and Trey's other creations fail, this animated series continues to carry Comedy Central (sans the late-night shows).

Best Late-Night Show: The Daily Show/Colbert Report Combo
The best fake news is not on Fox or CNN, it's brought to
you by John Stewart and Steven Colbert. The old late-night formula is dead and these two geniuses have resurrected the format. What did they do? They condensed their shows into two, separate, half-hour programs that don't shy away from such taboo subjects as religion and politics or intellectual guests. Long live the fake news!

Most Dramatic, Exciting Television: College Football
Who needs writers? This season of college football was the best ever with numerous upsets and down-to-the-wire drama. The bowl season is a bit of a yawn, but the regular season was one to remember!

Now for the best in film...

Best Teen-Sex Comedy since the Porky's trilogy: Superbad

What's funnier than three teen-age boys on a mission to score alcohol so that they can lose their virginity before graduating high school? Nothing.

Best Nonfiction Film: Manufactured Landscapes
Sorry Michael Moore fans, but this was by far the most beautiful and politically poignant film of the year, one of the more impressive screenings at this year's True/False.
Honorable Mentions: Manda Balla (Send a Bullet), About a Son, Off the Grid

Best Art House Film that made little if any sense: I'm Not There
I don't know what was happening or what Bob Dylan had to do with it aside from providing the soundtrack, but I was truly moved by this collection of fictionalized vignettes.

Film that I expected to suck but actually wasn't half bad: The Darjeeling Limited
Man, that Wes Anderson sure can direct a slow-motion walking scene with an ultra-cool 60's song in the background.

Best Action Film: The Bourne Ultimatum
More excitement than anyone can handle for an hour-and-a-half. I can't wait for number four!

Film of the Year: TBD
I've been really bad about seeing films this year. I think it was because of the eleven or so films I saw that True/False weekend that left me a little burnt out. I'll catch up in the coming months. Besides, I wasn't about to give this prize to The Simpsons or Knocked Up.

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