I kind of had a hard time compiling my list for the Top 10 Movies of 2009 because 2009 was kind of a lackluster year and very few movies stuck out to me.

So, as I was going month-by-month through 2009’s releases on IMDB, I decided to write down ALL of the movies I saw this year and rank them accordingly. I ended up seeing 37 movies this year – not bad for a guy with a 2 year-old. For your entertainment, I am posting 11 – 37 here. Enjoy!

  1. District 9
    I admired the movie for it’s craft and inventiveness. But the squalor of a South African shanty town was so oppressively authentic, it’s not a place I ever want to visit again.
  2. Adventureland
    A very relaxed and personal “coming of age” movie that isn’t strictly about getting laid. I mean, that’s part of the movie. Just not the only part. Killer soundtrack, too.
  3. Away We Go
    Sam Mendes, John Krasinski and Maya Rudolph aren’t names you would see billed together under normal circumstances, but this isn’t normal romantic comedy. More of a road movie than chick flick, its simple lessons about family and maturity stay with you long after the credits roll.
  4. Crank: High Voltage
    In all honesty, this film is straight up garbage. Grossly violent, racist and sexist. But I admired the film for what it laid on the line. It’s pretty much daring you to hate it and doesn’t care if you do.
  5. Public Enemies
    An oasis in the middle of the summer – a smart film for adults! Another charming rouge from Johnny Depp. If only Michael Mann hadn’t chosen to shoot it in digital video!
  6. Angels and Demons
    The addition of Ewan McGregor and the subtraction of Tom Hanks’s mullet make this follow up to 2006’s The DaVinci Code more enjoyable than the original.
  7. Whip It
    Another boilerplate story about an awkward girl trying to shake off the shackles of her dusty, boring town. But first-time director Drew Barrymore gets points for bringing something new to table – the culture surrounding roller derby leagues. Who knew I would find it so interesting!.
  8. It’s Complicated
    Normally I avoid Nancy Meyers and her films about cavernous kitchens, stocked high with copper kettles like the plague. But the combined charms of Meryl Streep, Alec Baldwin and Steve Martin made this one a winner.
  9. Watchmen
    One of 2009’s most hotly anticipated movies. Zack Snyder brought impeccable attention to detail and solved the squid problem from the original graphic novel. Yet, at the same time, I felt strangely disconnected from the experience.
  10. Where The Wild Things Are
    Spike Jonze’s love letter to childhood packs an emotional wallop with it’s ending, but the rest of it feels like a hazy dream.
  11. Julie & Julia
    Meryl Streep and Stanley Tucci deliver fascinating performances as Julia and Paul Child that make them feel like historical characters of importance. Amy Adams is shamefully wasted, forced to turn off her effervescence to play a damp dishrag of a character.
  12. Monsters Vs. Aliens
    Monsters, aliens and animation. My inner 6 year-old thanks you, Dreamworks.
  13. Ponyo
    The layered fluidity of the animation in Hayao Miyazaki’s modern reinterpretation of The Little Mermaid was astonishing. But damn if I could follow the plot.
  14. Earth
    Granted, this is basically repackaged footage from the excellent BBC/Discovery Channel documentary Planet Earth. But it looked amazing on the big screen and was a fairly optimistic cinematic journey about the nature of things.
  15. The Proposal
    A romantic comedy done right. Likable stars, a large and easily recognizable supporting cast and just enough quirks to make it cute.
  16. Funny People
    I wanted this movie to be better than it was. The first half about Seth Rogen and his ascent as a struggling comedian in Los Angeles is intriguing. The second half about Adam Sandler’s comedy superstar – despite having recovered from a bout with cancer – is depressing. The movie’s major failing is that it’s basically asks you to root for Sandler as he tries to break up the marriage of a former girlfriend.
  17. The Goods: Live Hard, Sell Hard
    This film wanted to be the next Anchorman or Walk Hard, but is sunk under the weight of Jeremy Piven’s bloated ego. If this movie had been made before Entourage, maybe we would have had something. Instead, watch this movie for the cavalcade of comedy stars in their supporting roles.
  18. A Christmas Carol
    A fine retelling of the Dicken’s classic. But the trappings of Zemeckis’s motion-capture animation was distracting. I was more interested in Jim Carrey, Colin Firth and Gary Oldman performing in the flesh.
  19. Ninja Assassin
    It’s been a long time since I’ve seen a straight-up ninja movie. This one is serviceable if you ignore Rain’s terrible acting. Even if it does insist on making these ancient warriors more like supernatural shadow-crawling boogeymen.
  20. The Time Traveler’s Wife
    This weepy chick flick leaves you questioning Eric Bana’s time-traveling ability than it does resolving any of the emotional subtext.
  21. Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince
    I’ve seen all 6 Harry Potter movies and not one of them is memorable. Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince continues this tradition.
  22. G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra
    A lumbering, stupid summer action flick summed up perfectly in the slack-jawed gaze of it’s star – Channing Tatum. But it manages to keep a little bit of the wonder from the 1980’s cartoon by being a cartoon itself.
  23. X-Men Origins: Wolverine
    After 3 X-Men films, Hugh Jackman has Wolverine down cold. It’s the rest of the movie that lets him down. Too many characters, several continuity editors, the bastardization of fan-favorite Deadpool and Wil.I.Am added to the cast makes this movie one of the biggest misfires of the year.
  24. Terminator Salvation
    A bleak – if slick – post-apocalyptic trek deeper into the Terminator mythology Someone needs to tell Christian Bale to knock it off with the gravely Batman voice. Cool to see a T-800 in up close and extended combat during the film’s climax. But I left the theater with an overwhelming feeling of “so what?”
  25. Night at the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian
    It’s hard to be overly critical about a movie meant for kids. But why does a movie about The Smithsonian make me feel dumber after having watched it?
  26. Brüno
    Sacha Baron Cohen tries to expose the ignorance of homophobia with his over-the-top fashionista character Brüno but instead makes homophobia look justifiable when Brüno tries to dry-hump Ron Paul or walks into a redneck’s tent buck naked on a hunting trip. The film’s contempt for its audience is palpable. Worst of all, it’s simply not funny.
  27. Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen
    Michael Bay takes everything I hated about the original Transformers and multiplies it by 10. Louder, dumber and less comprehensible. This movie would be completely forgettable if it weren’t for the racist caricatures applied to new additions Skids and Mudflaps. Worst movie of the year. How bad? Not only am I angry that I saw it, I’m annoyed that I have to write a recap of it.
  28. So, there you have it! Every movie I saw this year packaged up in a bow.

    Agree? Disagree? Leave your comments below!