This morning I was watching Reel Talk (randomly, don't usually watch TV on Sat mornings, but I'm awake early because I'm still sick). I was trying to keep up with their Top 10 lists (2 of them) for the movies of 2007, but then I had a minor social explosion. Margy texting me about good old Simon Peter Plummer, catching up on Bootlegger's notes from Peter and Joey from the past few hours, and chatting simultaneously to 3 different people on 3 different continents on 3 different IM applications (Trillian/AIM, Gchat, Skype - you know who/where you are).

Anyway, thankfully they have their lists on their website, so I was able to complete my recap. I liked their lists for the most part and below I've added my comments where applicable.

Jeffery's Picks
10. Across the Universe - Sony Pictures makes the list, naturally. One of the many that flew under my radar whilst in Africa - a musical comprised of Beetles songs. Looks not half-bad, will be Netflixed.

9. Nanking - The book on my sidebar - Flyboys - referred to this story somewhat colloquially as "The Rape of Nanking" which is really what it was if you know anything about it. Absolutely will Netflix this one.

8. I Have Never Forgotten You - Just like #9, a movie I will certainly Netflix, because its important.

7. The Kingdom - The DVD machine at the grocery store hasn't had this in stock my entire time here and I'm too lazy to go to Blockbuster. Might have to be NF'd as well. They showed a little too much of this movie in the trailers.

6. Ratatouille - Watched on my flight from Joburg to NYC. Was fun. Not sure it was top 10 fun.

5. Into the Wild - Want to see even though its a bit morbid, I read the book years ago, I devour anything Krakauer writes, the same way I devour anything Sean Penn screenplays and directs. Likely NFer here too, sadly, though, due to time constraints at this point. This one also gets soundtrack of the year award in my book - its Pearl Jam's Eddie Vedder's first ever solo album, with some beautiful stuff (visit the site).

4. Beowulf - Not that interested, although it does have Angelina Jolie. Won't watch it until after I read the story again, however.

3. Waitress - Two words: chick flick (although sadly, the writer / director was murdered late last year).

2. The Kite Runner - Want to see, but also not until I've read the book, which I haven't picked up yet, I prefer to read popular books a couple years after their craze phase.

1. No Country For Old Men - REALLY really want to catch this one before I leave the states, maybe Sunday afternoon.

Allison's Picks
10. Gone Baby Gone Morgan Freeman with his usual Midas touch. Also Ed Harris and Casey Affleck. From the same author as Mystic River. Haven't seen it but will NF.

9. The Diving Bell and the Butterfly - Going to see this evening, at the Angelika, for free, thanks to Viv's co-worker's boyfriend. High expectations.

8. Margot at the Wedding - Not very interested in a sarcastic Nicole Kidman. Jack Black is probably the only redeeming feature of this film.

7. Paris, Je T'aime - How did I miss this one? 18 shorts about falling in love in Paris. The 21 directors include: Walter Salles, Alfonso Cuarón, Tom Tykwer, Gus Van Sant, Wes Craven, Alexander Payne, Gérard Depardieu, Gurinder Chadha, the Coen Brothers. Cast includes Fanny Ardant, Juliette Binoche, Steve Buscemi, Sergio Castellitto, Willem Dafoe, Maggie Gyllenhall, Nick Nolte, Natalie Portman, Miranda Richardson, and Lewis Sewell, to name a few. Another NFer.

6. Across the Universe - See Jeffery's #10.

5. I Am Legend - Another one of the few I've seen. Liked it, cool to see NYC completely empty. Hot mustang in the first scene.

4. Rescue Dawn - Saw this one too, last summer before leaving the states. Christian Bale and Steve Zahn in a based-on-a-true-story flick about being imprisoned and escaping a Vietnam POW camp. This one was pretty good although it didn't get much press at the time.

3. Atonement - Chick flick but apparently I HAVE to see this one at some point (although the idea of my Keira making love to another man is admittedly a difficult one). So, NF.

2. Knocked Up - This looked kinda "eh, I'll see it if I happen to be in the same room" when I first saw the trailer, which is how I still feel. I heard mixed reviews. Unlikely to be NFed.

1. 3:10 To Yuma Missed this one too, but it might still be in the theaters in ZA when I get back there. Looking forward to it.

Honorable Mentions (actually these were where they called out breakout performances by certain stars, but it helps list a couple more movies, so I've reworked it)

Transformers - Michael Bay did not destroy much of what was good and right about my childhood.

The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford - Just missed it coming out in the states when I was leaving last year, will have to NF.

Juno - Out now but I'm only mildly interested.

In the Valley of Elah - Saw this one when it came out in ZA. Expected it to be better based on the title, which if you aren't aware, is biblical - its the place my namesake picked up 5 smooth stones. Anyway, the movie was pretty depressing.

American Gangster - Really want to see this, its another one I'm hoping will be in the ZA theaters when I get back.

Bourne Ultimatum - Also caught this one in ZA. The Bourne series has stayed high quality.

Update: Since writing I've seen The Diving Bell and the Butterfly (great, but sad), 3:10 to Yuma (pretty cool), most of Into the Wild (great, about what I expected), and American Gangster (very very cool).

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