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The Best Of 2010 List

The 2010 List

(in no order)

Top Albums

The National – High Violet
Arcade Fire – The Suburbs
Beach House – Teen Dream
Frightened Rabbit – The Winter of Mixed Drinks
The Seabellies – Limbo Lake
Deerhunter – Halycon Digest
Besnard Lakes - Are the Roaring Night

(Runners-up - Band of Horses, The New Pornographers, James, Paul Weller and two fists up for Brandon Cox aka Atlas Sound for releasing four full albums online for free ).

Best Films

Mostly it was a year of tracking down past films I hadn't seen. (Caught a lot of Bergman, which made everything else seem a little facile). Yet, there are always a few gems. Here goes...

North Face
True thrilling story of rock climbers in prewar Germany.

The Ghost Writer
Underrated Polanksi drama with a threatening undercurrent.

The Social Network
Greed is Good. Fincher does it again.

The Killer Inside Me.
A film this bold should not be overlooked.

Shutter Island
Not one of Scorsese's best nor the most original but still enjoyable.

Spectacle with intelligence. Who would have thought?

Fish Tank
Brilliant verite style film about being stuck in the English class system.
Makes Mike Leigh seem passé.

Terribly Happy
Creepy but amusing Czech film about a cop with post traumatic stress.

(unseen as yet but purported to be very good - Winters Bone, The King's Speech, 127 Hours, Blue Valentine, Black Swan & Lebanon - of course, mostly released at the end of the year to be fresh in voters minds come Oscar time).

Most over-rated Film

Alice in Wonderland
Yawn. Apart from Ed Wood, Tim Burton has been making the same film over and over again since Beetlejuice.

(Apart from the ludicrous amount of remakes like Saw 174 - STOP!)

Terrible in every regard. Not even Christina Ricci's boobies could save it.
And it makes no sense. Liam Neeson, why?

Best Australian Film

Beneath Hill 60
Claustrophobic, World War I underground drama.
With the budget of The Pacific's one afternoon coffee break.

Tomorrow When the War Began
What we all feared – the film that could never live up to the book. But it tried.

Most over-rated
Animal Kingdom
Good but style over substance.

Bran Nue Dae
Bryng Moi A Buket.
(Granted, aside from Grease, I'm not into musicals. This was bad, but still not as bad as Glee. Now there's an oxymoron).

Best Novel

Jonathen Franzen
Yes it is that good. His intelligence is beyond compare.
Insightful, witty and he makes it looks easy.

Best TV Series

(This is nearly pointless as Australia is usually behind the U.S. with many shows, but unfortunately not Glee, so for what it's worth.)

Cancelled after it's first season. What a shame.

I keep waiting for the quality and ideas to fall but it keeps surprising.

Doctor Who
I miss David Tennant but the new Doc is refreshing.
So is the lovely Amy Pond.

The Killing
Okay, it officially came out in Denmark in 2008 but it was only released on DVD this year. Brilliant.

Most Disappointing

The Pacific
A couple of good episodes, but pretty dull compared to Band of Brothers.
Too many pointless battle scenes with no characters to care about.
More script development please!

After Battlestar Galactica, how could they get it so wrong?

Anything you'd care to add?

My Books


  1. Great list, Anthony.
    I hope you had a wonderful Christmas, and here's to a great new year for you and yours.
    Thanks for your friendship; it means a lot.
    Happy 2011.

  2. that was an interesting round-up of 2010 although I didn't know any of the music you like. Yes, I'd like to add a couple of series that I thought were brilliant this year; The Street and Five Daughters, both were shown on ABC2 and iview and I was mesmerised. Jimmy McGovern is fantastic and whoever made Five Daughters was a genuius, so well put together and very accurate to the actual murders. I also really loved Lillies at the start of the year and Gavin and Stacey never fails to give me a giggle. Just remembered there was one more 3 part series on the ABC also called "Getting There" I think? a very funny satire of nurses on a ward. All of my choices are British and all on the ABC I'm proud to say. I find US TV almost unwatchable these days... I am looking forward to the films coming out now, although they'll be a DVD for me, hardly go to the movies these days :-) A very happy new year Tony, I've enjoyed your writing so much this year xx

  3. Thanks very much Robyn and Sal. You guys are always very supportive.

    Five Daughters sounds very interesting Sal. I'll have to check it out. I don't watch as much ABC as I used to, though I did watch Lennon Naked recently, and have to say, it was a bit disappointing, but the Brits can make great drama. (The British film Nowhere Boy was a better Lennon story.)



  4. I don't agree with some of your television comments, thought the new Doctor Who series was very ordinary. All mayhem, no suspense, very little story. More a problem of the writer, who can write really atmospheric creepy stuff, like the angels episode - he also did the episode with the gasmasked kids in the previous series.

    I was enjoying Caprica before if ended. I wonder if seven will screen the rest of the series. Might have to wait until cable screens it. I thought the two diverging worlds, of real and virtual were starting to create a complex story line. But obviously it did not have enough explosions and space ships for the majority of viewers.

    It was a bad year for good character driven and plot driven science fiction with Stargate Universe getting canned too. Much superior to the rest of the stargate franchise. With Torchwood and The Dollhouse gone too. Fringe is all that is left.

    Did not get into Flashforward because seven moved it around so often I missed too many episodes - did it have a hanging ending? And I only found out The Event was science fiction about ten episodes in when I saw an ad for an upcoming episode which had aliens in it. Good on ya channel seven. So the year of television was one of disappointing ends.

  5. Great lists! I'll have to check some of em' out.
    Somebody else commented that blog post of mine & said they were really into the Tru-crime thing too!
    The book was "There but for the grace of God 20th century's most infamous killers." By Fred Rosen. It was the best book! I finished it last night & was sad that it was already over! lol The guy actually interviews the few who escaped the killers & they tell their stories in the book. It was the best. I learned a lot about Jeffrey Dahmer too! SCARY! LOL I had no idea how truly creepy he was. I didn't know he actually kept people's skulls. ew! lol It was so interesting though. I got the book offline for free! lol On it's a great site. You just trade books for free. lol You might wanna check it out.

    I think I finally am getting over being sick. It was just awful! lol Well, I hope you & the fam are doing great and hope yall had a wonderful new years!

  6. I'll have to give this some thought!
    In the meantime, here's to a happy and healthy 2011!

  7. Thanks for your comments guys.
    Cheers for the heads up on the book site Kendra..and the book.. yeah Dahmer was nasty.. there was a movie made about him..which wasnt that great, but was still nasty enough, being true..

    Graham, its okay if we disagree. I hear what your saying about Doctor Who, but this whole new series, since 2005, has been about manic rushing around, and frankly, I was sick of Russell T. Davies view on everything, particuarly sexual politics. It suits Torchwood, but not Dr. Who. Some episodes were a mis-fire, but I think Moffat is a better writer than Davies, and with Amy Pond around, i'd probably watch her brush her hair for an

    Caprica was interesting, and i thought it was going somewhere. The virtual world seemed like a good idea, ditto the One God movement..but his daughter as the Cylon was really quite stupid and the actress was really grating..
    I love Eric Stoltz though and it was a shame, but the series simply lost its cohesiveness, and after about episode 8, i just didnt care anymore. (Its not about explosions, its about interesting characters in conflict. And i just didnt buy it).

    Never been much of a Stargate fan, and after watching the first few eps of Universe, that opinion hasnt changed.

    ..but its all opinion isn't it..

    I'm getting into The Wire now.. first season was quite good..

    I missed the Event too, but it seemed like a replacement for Lost.. another series which annoyed me..if Channel 7 is showing it, im already suspect....

    Boardwalk Empire is supposed to be good, though havent seen it..and the Living Dead.. a series about zombies? im really over would have to be exceptional...

    anyway, thanks for yr views all..

  8. I think Amy Pond has a lot more emotional depth than the previous doctor's assistants. Probably will be the best assistant so far.

    I was wondering what you disliked about Caprica - his daughter being the cylon - I was looking forward to watching her personality change as first she and her clones where forced to serve humanity and then they rebelled.

    Not about explosions.... it seems to stay on television for any length of time it has to be.
    Channel 7 moving Lost around had me missing episodes and losing the plot, so I gave up on it in about series three.


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