December 9, 2010

MRQE Rewind: The 10 Best of 2010 - The 10 Best Comedies

Not a lot of surprises on this list, as the Judd Apatow-style of awkward slacker humor continues to fill up this year's comedy offerings. That doesn't mean that the films on this list aren't funny, though. In a year filled with economic uncertainty and other bummers, it's nice to know that you can still forget your troubles for a few hours and let it all go.


10. Youth in Revolt
MRQE Metric: 62
The first Michael Cera movie on the list (but not the last), Youth in Revolt is a cracked look at the usual teen love story. Cera plays Nick, a neurotic loser who manages to court teen dream Sheeni. When distance and disapproving family threaten to dissolve the fledgling relationship, Nick is desperate to hold on to his girl. At wit's end, he concocts an elaborate alter ego – rebellious Fran├žoise Dillinger. The Fran├žoise persona works like a charm, but also works to get Nick into a whole heap of trouble. Quirky and episodic, Youth in Revolt managed to charm more critics than audience members; the film came and went relatively quickly at the box office.





9. It's Kind of a Funny Story
MRQE Metric: 63
Based on a novel by Ned Vizzini, this adaptation follows depressed teenager Craig (played by relative newcomer Keir Gilchrist), who checks himself into a psychiatric hospital following a suicide attempt. While initially wary of his fellow patients and eager to return home, Craig quickly falls in with Bobby (Zach Galifianakis), who becomes his guide of sorts to life in the ward. Unsurprisingly, there's also a pretty teenage girl for Craig to woo, but It's Kind of a Funny Story is about more than that. Bittersweet as well as bitterly funny, the movie transcends stereotype in order to portray both Craig's burgeoning young adulthood and Bobby's attempts at putting his life back together.


Movie Videos & Movie Scenes at MOVIECLIPS.com



8. I Love You Phillip Morris
MRQE Metric: 64
This one's been shelved for a while, but it's finally hitting theaters in time to be included on this year's list. Based (somewhat) on a true story, Jim Carrey plays a conman who gets pinched by the cops after some elaborate moneymaking schemes. Once inside, he falls head-over-heels for the titular Phillip Morris (Ewan McGregor, in a rare comedic role). The rest of the film chronicles Carrey's often over the top efforts to stay with Morris, even when it means sneaking in and out of jail over and over again. Cautious distributors, put off by the raunchy content, kept this one from being released in the States until recently; it's already played to some acclaim overseas.





7. The Other Guys
MRQE Metric: 65
Will Ferrell and Mark Wahlberg are the list's oddest couple in this homage to the buddy-cop comedy. The two play “the other guys,” the ones who are always overshadowed by the type of showboating police officers who usually star in these kinds of movies. Frustrated by their incompetence, the bickering pair soon gets in way over their heads in the hope of achieving some long-overdue glory. A bit predictable but great for fans of cop comedies, The Other Guys has some amusing sight gags and a few brilliant cameos (watch out for Samuel L. Jackson and The Rock as rival top cops).
 

Movie Videos & Movie Scenes at MOVIECLIPS.com


6. Get Him to the Greek
MRQE Metric: 65
A sequel of sorts to Forgetting Sarah Marshall, Get Him to the Greek hosts a similar over-the-top mix of raunchy humor and slacker style. Jonah Hill plays a low-on-the-totem-pole record label employee who gets saddled with accompanying rock star Russell Brand to a career-restarting concert in L.A. Brand, of course, plays the misbehaving rock star to the hilt, and his misbehavior turns what should have been an easy task into an epic road trip. Don't miss Puff Daddy as an over the top record executive (a.k.a, playing himself).


Movie Videos & Movie Scenes at MOVIECLIPS.com


5. Nanny McPhee Returns
MRQE Metric: 66
This is the unexpected dark horse of this list: a British children's film where the humor never gets too rough. Despite it's family friendly tone, the second Nanny McPhee film is charming and clever enough to earn its place on the list. Emma Thompson reprises her role as the mysterious title character with more tricks up her sleeve than Mary Poppins. This time around, she appears at a whimsical country home, where Maggie Gyllenhaal is being run ragged by a brood of little English brats. Gentle hilarity ensues, including an entire menagerie of adorable baby animals.


Movie Videos & Movie Scenes at MOVIECLIPS.com


4. Greenberg
MRQE Metric: 66
This is not your typical Ben Stiller movie. Audiences who expected Stiller's usual recipe of slapstick and silliness were often bewildered when faced with this quieter, mumblecore-influenced portrait of aimless adulthood. Greenberg (Stiller) is a walking pile of marblemouthed neuroses, wandering around Los Angeles like a ghost. His bumbling attempts to gain both meaning and human companionship are at once excruciating and hopeful. The Squid and The Whale's Noah Baumbach is behind this film, which makes you wince as much as it makes you laugh.


Movie Videos & Movie Scenes at MOVIECLIPS.com


3. Easy A
MRQE Metric: 71
This raunchy teen comedy is reminiscent of a classic John Hughes' film. Sassy teen outcast Olive (Emma Stone) does a favor for her bullied gay friend by pretending that they've done the deed. Not only does the raunchy charade work, but more and more boys come calling, eager to lose their fake virginity in order to gain social currency. Olive becomes a high school sensation, but she soon learns that being perceived as a slut, fake or not, isn't all it's cracked up to be. Scandalous but smart, Easy A is a throwback to a golden age of high school comedies.


Movie Videos & Movie Scenes at MOVIECLIPS.com


2. Kick-Ass
MRQE Metric: 73
This loud and rambunctious comic book adaptation takes a big swing at the superhero film. Total geek Dave Lizewski, inspired by the comic books he reads at a vicious rate, sets out to become a real life superhero. Real life, of course, isn't like comic books; Dave gets his own ass kicked even more than he manages to foil small time criminals. This one got a lot of press for its portrayal of the violet-haired and extremely violent young Hit Girl, but Nicholas Cage is the one who steals the show as her unhinged father. Extremely violent and extremely edgy, Kick-Ass criticizes the excesses of the superhero genre while wallowing in it at the same time. It's a fine line to walk, but critics largely agreed that Kick-Ass succeeds.


Movie Videos & Movie Scenes at MOVIECLIPS.com


1. Scott Pilgrim vs. The World
MRQE Metric: 75
Based on the graphic novel phenomenon, this love letter to geek culture opened to much fanfare but not a lot of box office. Be that as it may, this movie is destined for cult status at full speed. Chock full of dorky humor and a hipster soundtrack, Scott Pilgrim vs. the World is a riotous and candy-colored love letter to the video game generation. Michael Cera (again) plays slacker hero Scott Pilgrim. When he becomes besotted with punk rock chick Ramona Flowers, Scott, against his will, is enlisted to defeat her seven evil exes in order to win her hand. Romance, intrigue, and some pretty awesome fight scenes ensue. My personal favorite on the list, Scott Pilgrim is ridiculously fun to watch.


Movie Videos & Movie Scenes at MOVIECLIPS.com



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