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the 10th annual film bitch awards, celebrating the films of 2009

Best Action Sequence

'There are no small parts'
 AVATAR
AVATAR
DISTRICT 9
PUBLIC ENEMIES
STAR TREK
 Taming the Dragon
 Humans vs. Na'Vi Finale
Escape to Mother Ship
Forest Escape
Drop zone and drill.
 
Gold: TAMING THE DRAGON Silver: HUMANS VS. NA'VI Bronze: STAR TREK

Finalists: TERMINATOR: SALVATION (Robots, Cycle, Helicopters... what a pileup) | RED CLIFF (pick a scene, any scene)

Semi-Finalists: THIRST (final battle) | THE HURT LOCKER (I tend to think of the whole movie as one slow burn action sequence, only without the typical action movements) | HARRY POTTER AND THE HALF BLOOD PRINCE (Surrounding the Weasleys) | MONSTERS VS. ALIENS (in Galaxa's spaceship)

 

Best Musical Sequence (in a Musical)

[this category is only held in years in which there are musicals]
 Crazy Heart
"Somebody Else / I Don't Know"
Jeff Bridges
Every Little Step
"At the Ballet"
various artists, auditions
Nine
"Be Italian"
Fergie
Nine
"My Husband Makes Movies"
Marion Cotillard
Nine
"Take it All"
Marion Cotillard
 Bad Blake's washed up two-part musical intro in a bowling alley. It's expertly thorny and revealing.
 Why are audition sequences so fascinating despite the cliche of it all?
The best choreographed of the hit & miss numbers... Fergie invites you to play in her sandbox.
This ballad reminds how wondrous musicals can be when in the hands of performers who can both act and sing.
 Both of Marion's numbers are true highlights. This one gets interrupted too much, though. Damn you framing device!
 
Gold: MY HUSBAND MAKES MOVIES  Silver: SOMEBODY ELSE Bronze: BE ITALIAN

Finalists: "Falling and Flying" (Colin Farrell and Jeff Bridges) in CRAZY HEART

Semi-Finalists: "A Very Unusual Way" (Nicole Kidman) and "A Call From the Vatican" (Penélope Cruz) in NINE

 

 

Best Musical Moment (in a non-musical)

 (500) DAYS OF SUMMER
"You Make My Dreams Come True"
Joseph Gordon-Levitt
CORALINE
"The Actresses"
French & Saunders
AN EDUCATION
"You've Got Me Wrapped Around Your Little Finger"
Beth Rowley
FANTASTIC MR FOX
"Petey's Song"
Jarvis Crocker
THE HANGOVER
"Stu's Song"
Ed Helms
 From Han Solo's wink to the fountains to that bluebeard... perfection!
Hilariously bawdy "If you go swimmin' with bow legged women."
Jenny caught up in the glamour of fine dining, chanteuses and nights on the town.
"That's just weak songwriting! You wrote a bad song, Petey."
"What do tigers dream of?"
 

Gold: YOU MAKE MY DREAMS COME TRUE Silver: THE ACTRESSES Bronze: STU'S SONG

Finalists: "Bust a Move" crashing the party in UP IN THE AIR | Karaoke in (500) DAYS OF SUMMER | "Other Father's Song" in CORALINE

Semi-Finalists: solo ME AND ORSON WELLES | the men harmonizing in BRIGHT STAR

 

Best Kiss

 (500) DAYS OF SUMMER
Joseph Gordon-Levitt & Zooey Deschanel
AVATAR
Sam Worthington & Zoe Saldana (and animators)
BRIGHT STAR
Abbie Cornish & Ben Whishaw
BROTHERS
Jake Gyllenhaal & Natalie Portman
A SINGLE MAN
Julianne Moore & Colin Firth
 A copy room surprise. She's hard to figure, that Summer.
Perhaps this should've been in sex scene. They do "join" their tendrils.
 Not just the best kiss, but one of the best scenes, period. A lovely confession of affection and its playful aftermath.
 Who can blame them? But, oh the repercussions.
A desperate clinging to a shared past, a quick buss and Charley is abandoned again.
 

Gold: BRIGHT STAR  Silver: A SINGLE MAN Bronze: (500) DAYS OF SUMMER

Finalists: INGLOURIOUS BASTERDS (Briggite Von Hammersmarck & the napkin) | CHERI (Michelle Pfeiffer & Rupert Friend)

Semi-Finalists: THE YOUNG VICTORIA | BROKEN EMBRACES | That amazing almost-kiss duet between Ben Foster & Samantha Morton in THE MESSENGER.

 

Best Sex/Love Scene

BROKEN EMBRACES
Penélope Cruz (w/ José Luis Gómez or Lluís Homar)
THE LAST STATION
THIRST
Ok-Bin Kim & Kang Ho-Song
 WATCHMEN
Billy Crudup (x3) & Malin Akerman
WHIP IT
Ellen Page & Landon Pigg
 Lena and Her Lover. Almodóvar is so gifted with screen eroticism. Cruz, too, of course.
The exuberant deflowering of celibacy sworn Valentin (Our Mr. McAvoy)
Tae-Ju finally vocalizes her sadomasochism. Uh-Oh. Lots more pain to come.
Electric blue fourgy... "It's like licking a battery."
 An innocent charmingly shot and scored bit of poolside love (with watery striptease)
 

Gold: BROKEN EMBRACES Silver: THIRST Bronze: WATCHMEN

Finalists: TWO LOVERS (Phoenix & Shaw / Phoenix & Paltrow) it's complicated. It always ends in tears.

Semi-Finalists: CHERI (Michelle Pfeiffer & Rupert Friend) intergenerational soulmates | THE MAID gets cold feet | BRUNO -a comically perverse kama sutra

 

Best Credit Sequence / Title Design

 (500) DAYS OF SUMMER
ANTICHRIST
 CORALINE
 UP IN THE AIR
 ZOMBIELAND

Tom & Summer's childhoods and those moody (day) markers.

Hilariously histrionic sick-colored chalkboard sequence titles.
Needle & stitch work. Don't forget the button eyes.
up int eh air... literally! Overhead geometrics, slickly dissected.
 Demolished and splintering titles and intermittent "rules"
 

Gold: (500) DAYS OF SUMMER Silver: ZOMBIELAND Bronze: CORALINE

Finalists: WATCHMEN (opening credits)

Semi-Finalists: UP (end credits)

 

Best Opening Scenes

First impressions are everything
DUPLICITY
 HUNGER
THE HURT LOCKER
JULIA
WHERE THE WILD THINGS ARE
 Spy Games & Corporate Warfare, humorously stylized.
 At first cryptic but entirely hypnotic as the images become contextualized.
"You are now in the Kill Zone." (thanks for the warning)
Julia on the prowl: randy, relentless, and enderaingly arrhythmic.
Max's wild rampage. He tackles dog, snows sister, bites mom.
 
Gold: DUPLICITY Silver: WHERE THE WILD THINGS ARE Bronze: JULIA

Finalists: INGLOURIOUS BASTERDS (Dairy Farm) | FANTASTIC MR FOX (Squab Farm)

Semi-Finalists: PRECIOUS (Classroom Daydream) | UP (Pixar's done the newsreel intro before but "the spirit of adventure is out there" is still pretty charming.) | (500) DAYS OF SUMMER "this is not a love story" your first clue as to how to read this sly and oft misread movie.

 

 

Best Ending

SPOILERS
 THE HURT LOCKER
INGLOURIOUS BASTERDS
NINE
SUMMER HOURS
WHERE THE WILD THINGS ARE
After that smart monologue, a gut punch. Hit the reset button.

"This just might be my masterpiece."

Tarantino knows how to delight his movie-buff audience.

"Begin again. Start from the beginning each time."

Nine loops back in on itself as the stage curtain call looks out over the film shoot.

The granddaughter leaving her own party at the estate, a leisurely drift away from childhood and family history.
A beautifully wordless homecoming. There's no place like Mom.
 
Gold: WHERE THE WILD THINGS ARE Silver: SUMMER HOURS Bronze: THE HURT LOCKER

Finalists: UP IN THE AIR | CHERI (Devastating though I wish the film had earned it a little more.)

 

Top Dozen Scenes of the Year

(excluding previous scene categories)
BAD LIEUTENANT: PORT OF CALL NEW ORLEANS
BROKEN EMBRACES
FANTASTIC MR FOX FANTASTIC MR FOX
HUNGER
 Iguanas The Blind Caress
Canis Lupis
Whackbat
Urine Sweep
HUNGER INGLOURIOUS BASTERDS
JULIA PRECIOUS A SINGLE MAN
 Wee  Foal
 Meet Brigitte
 Masked Mother Proxy
 Who Was Gonna Love Me?
 The Phone Call
     
TAKING WOODSTOCK
UP      
 Acid Trip
 Married Life
     
 

Gold: MARRIED LIFE Silver: WHO WAS GONNA LOVE ME? Bronze: THE BLIND CARESS

Finalists: Home shopping in (500) DAYS OF SUMMER | The Giant Face INGLOURIOUS BASTERDS | Riot Gear Abuse HUNGER | Courtyard Call TWO LOVERS | Grief courtship THE MESSENGER

Semi-Finalists: Masturbation THE WHITE RIBBON | Marcus on the cross TERMINATOR SALVATION | 3 & 4: The Archivists 9 | A bird - THE WHITE RIBBON | Settling - UP IN THE AIR | The Garden CORALINE | the Mall THE MESSENGER | Lip Reading BROKEN EMBRACES

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