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What Did We Miss? The Overlooked Movies Of 2010

By Ted Hope | Hope for Film February 26, 2011 at 2:26AM

What's with all the attention for the movies that everyone saw? Spirits, Oscars, Critics Groups: doesn't it sometimes seem like the wrong emphasis? All this money is spent, all this noise is made, for what we have all already have seen. Okay, I get it. If you are reading this, you are not like regular people anyway. You probably go to the movies, and all the events of this weekend are actually for the folks that don't go to the movies. Is it ironic that people watch the Oscars, but don't want to pay to see movies (but that's something for later). If we started our own awards show for the films that needed more love than what they got, what films would be this year's nominees?
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What's with all the attention for the movies that everyone saw? Spirits, Oscars, Critics Groups: doesn't it sometimes seem like the wrong emphasis? All this money is spent, all this noise is made, for what we have all already have seen. Okay, I get it. If you are reading this, you are not like regular people anyway. You probably go to the movies, and all the events of this weekend are actually for the folks that don't go to the movies. Is it ironic that people watch the Oscars, but don't want to pay to see movies (but that's something for later). If we started our own awards show for the films that needed more love than what they got, what films would be this year's nominees?

I recognize my dream of an awards show for overlooked movies would not have much of attendance beyond maybe me and the filmmakers, but that sounds like a good party to me! So any sponsors out there want to back next year's Overlooks? I think we will make the statuettes (they have to be small so that even the recipients overlook them) out of organic material; not only will they be "green", but the awards will perish on the vine, just like the films did!

When a great -- or even a good movie -- does not perform in the US, what's to blame? The distributor? The Superabundance of content? The infrastructure and the release strategy? Timing? The audience? All or none of the above? Or is just because sometimes the world just sucks. What ever it is, we know it is hard out there for a flick.

I do think we can start to get it figured out if we look at what deserved better. It is a healthy activity for us to take a moment this weekend and speak about the great movies that more people would have dug, if only we could have gotten them to the movie palaces.

Now, sometimes there are good movies that do come out that don't get much attention or audience, but I would not call them overlooked. We still make, release, promote, and celebrate movies that have a limited audience. Really a lot of the films on my Top Ten movies, generally fit into this category -- partially because they have limited love returning to them, I feel compelled to love them more.

So... What movies deserved more attention than they got? Now these may well not be "Academy" worthy films. They don't have to be "prestige" titles and smell like vegetables and vitamins. They do have to be films that are however about the craft, about the filmmaker clearly achieving the majority of her goals -- whether we like them or not. I do think they should be films that are fun, but my sense of that, is not everyone's. I have included a few films that did get some love mind you, but not the love I personally feel they deserved.

But without further adieu, allow me to nominate a few:

Animal Kingdom
Daddy Longlegs
The Disappearance Of Alice Creed
Fish Tank
I Am Love
I Love You, Phillip Morris
The Illusionist
LittleRock
Monsters
Please Give
Red Riding Trilogy
The Square
The Wild And Wonderful Whites Of West Virginia

I haven't yet seen, but suspect I would feel the same about:

Carlos
Dogtooth
Down Terrace

It wouldn't be a list worthy of the title "Overlooked" if I didn't overlook a few myself. Please add to this list.

This article is related to: Audience