The Best and Worst Films of 2006
1.) United 93 - A spellbinding, incredibly
powerful docudrama about the fourth commercial airliner hijacked by al-Qaeda
terrorists on September 11, 2001, and the brave passengers who fought back.
One of the most gripping, deeply unsettling films I've ever seen.
the following link to read Chuck O'Leary's theatrical review of United 93: http://www.fulvuedrive-in.com/review/3662/United+93+(Theatrical+Film+Review)
2.) Little Children
- This fascinating study of unfulfilled lives in American suburbia
follows an extramarital affair between two unhappily married people (Kate
Winslet and Patrick Wilson), and the paranoia generated in the
neighborhood when a convicted sex offender (Jackie Earle
Haley) moves in. A perfect companion piece to American Beauty, and just as good.
3.) The Queen - Helen Mirren makes an
amazing on-screen transformation into an out-of-touch Queen Elizabeth II,
whose initial lack of reaction to the 1997 death of Princess Diana turns the
British public and press against her. Actor Michael
Sheen also bears an uncanny resemblance to Prime Minister Tony Blair,
who comes off as the hero of the piece for attempting to salvage the
Royals' reputation in spite of themselves.
4.) Broken Trail - This excellent
made-for-cable Western technically shouldn't be eligible for this list, but in
a year in which there was little to rave about, I'm putting on
here anyway. Directed by an underrated veteran of many feature films
(Walter Hill) and produced by and starring one of our finest living
actors (Robert Duvall), it has received nothing but praise since its
debut. In 1897, two cowboys (Duvall and
Thomas Haden Church) transporting a herd of horses from Oregon to Wyoming
become the protectors of five young Chinese women who've been sold into
the following link to read Chuck O'Leary's DVD review of Broken Trail: http://www.fulvuedrive-in.com/review/4392/Broken+Trail+(Western)
5.) The Good Shepherd - Robert De Niro
directed this intelligent, totally absorbing 167-minute epic about the
early years of America's CIA, and how one man's loyalty to the spy agency
destroyed his personal life. The most underrated film of '06.
6.) Flags of Our Fathers - A cynical yet
respectful World War II film from director Clint Eastwood about the
circumstances behind the famous photo taken of the flag raising on Iwo Jima,
and how three ordinary American soldiers were recruited to help the war effort,
only to be quickly forgotten when they were no longer of use.
the following link to read Chuck O'Leary's theatrical review of Flags of Our Fathers: http://www.fulvuedrive-in.com/review/4432/Flags+Of+Our+Fathers+(Theatrical+Film+Review)
7.) Little Miss Sunshine - A quirky gem
about a dysfunctional family driving cross country to enter their 7-year-old
little girl in a children's beauty pageant. A wise movie made by people
who seem to know a lot about life, and all the disappointments, uncomfortable
moments and ridiculous little rules that come with it.
the following link to read Chuck O'Leary's theatrical review of Little Miss Sunshine: http://www.fulvuedrive-in.com/review/4054/Little+Miss+Sunshine+(Theatrical+Film+Review)
the following link to read Nicholas Sheffo's DVD review of Little Miss Sunshine: http://www.fulvuedrive-in.com/review/4679/Little+Miss+Sunshine+(Widescreen+DVD-Video)
8.) World Trade Center - Oliver Stone
directed this straightforward, non-editorializing drama about the heroism of a
handful of ordinary Americans in New York City on 9/11.
the following link to read Chuck O'Leary's theatrical review of World Trade Center: http://www.fulvuedrive-in.com/review/4102/World+Trade+Center+(2006/Theatrical+Film+Review)
the following link to read Nicholas Sheffo's HD-DVD review of World Trade Center: http://www.fulvuedrive-in.com/review/4772/World+Trade+Center+(HD-DVD+Set)
9.) Babel - A multi-storied drama
about how a gun ties together and affects the lives of four sets of people
from different parts of the globe.
10.) Brokeback Mountain - This year-end 2005
release didn't open in my market until January of '06, making it eligible for
this year's best-10 list. It's an ultimately moving story of two cowboys
who have a homosexual relationship, but are forced to keep it a secret in
the following link to read Nicholas Sheffo's DVD review of Brokeback Mountain: http://www.fulvuedrive-in.com/review/3578/Brokeback+Mountain+(Widescreen)
The Lake House - This piece of
idiotic nonsense is so illogical that it becomes more infuriating by the
minute. Sandra Bullock and Keanu Reeves play two people corresponding in
different years through a magic mailbox.
2.) Lady in the Water - The overrated M.
Night Shyamalan finally shot himself in the foot with this pretentious drivel
about a mermaid that comes out of an apartment-building pool.
3.) The Da Vinci Code - Ron Howard's film
version of Dan Brown's blasphemous best-selling novel is bad enough to offend
even an atheist.
the following link to read Chuck O'Leary's theatrical review of The Da Vinci Code: http://www.fulvuedrive-in.com/review/3756/The+Da+Vinci+Code+(Theatrical+Film+Review)
4.) Miami Vice - A grainy, ugly,
incomprehensible HD-shot disaster. You know a movie is awful when you
start getting fond memories of Don Johnson, Philip Michael
Thomas and '80s pastels.
the following link to read Chuck O'Leary's theatrical review of Miami Vice: http://www.fulvuedrive-in.com/review/4049/Miami+Vice+(2006/Theatrical+Film+Review)
the following link to read Nicholas Sheffo's HD-DVD/Blu-ray combo review of Miami Vice: http://www.fulvuedrive-in.com/review/4689/Miami+Vice+(2006+Feature+Film;+HD-DVD/DVD+Combo+Format)
5.) Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky
Bobby - A stock-car comedy so mind-numbingly stupid that it makes
1983's Stroker Ace
starring Burt Reynolds suddenly seem like a sophisticated masterwork of sublime
the following link to read Chuck O'Leary's theatrical review of Talladega Nights: http://www.fulvuedrive-in.com/review/4075/Talladega+Nights:+The+Ballad+of+Ricky+Bobby+(Theatrical+Film+Review)
the following link to read Nicholas Sheffo's Blu-ray review of Talladega Nights: http://www.fulvuedrive-in.com/review/4650/Talladega+Nights:+The+Ballad+of+Ricky+Bobby+(Blu-ray+++Full+Screen+DVD)
6.) Nacho Libre - Another painfully unfunny
comedy starring Jack Black as a Mexican monk who becomes a professional
wrestler. Gives you more reason than ever to love Black's death scene in
1997's The Jackal.
the following link to read Nicholas Sheffo's HD-DVD review of Nacho Libre: http://www.fulvuedrive-in.com/review/4665/Nacho+Libre+(HD-DVD)
7.) Flyboys - An embarrassing cliché-fest
full of digital effects about a squadron of World War I fighter pilots in
France. The result was one of the year’s
8.) Ask the Dust - Colin Farrell makes his
second appearance on this year's worst-10 list in this comatose Depression-era
drama written and directed by the once estimable Robert Towne.
the following link to read Nicholas Sheffo's DVD review of Ask the Dust: http://www.fulvuedrive-in.com/review/3995/Ask+The+Dust
9.) Failure to Launch - What more
can be said about a movie where the highlight is Terry Bradshaw in
his birthday suit.
the following link to read Chuck O'Leary's theatrical review of Failure to Launch: http://www.fulvuedrive-in.com/review/3474/Failure+To+Launch+(Theatrical+Film+Review)
10.) Basic Instinct 2 - A too-old Sharon
Stone reprised the role that made her a star in this boring belated sequel
nobody was asking for.
the following link to read Chuck O'Leary's theatrical review of Basic Instinct 2: http://www.fulvuedrive-in.com/review/3556/Basic+Instinct+2+(Theatrical+Film+Review)