The Best Movies of 2011

There were two movies that I saw in 2011 that were close to perfection for me.  Incendies is a French-Canadian film which takes place in a Middle Eastern country, probably Lebanon, and focuses on a conflict between Christians and Arabs, presented as a family suspense story.  The other movie could not be more opposite as entertainment than its French-Canadian counterpart, and it is Woody Allen’s Midnight in Paris, about the “Golden Age” in retrospect in that magnetic city.
On a slightly lesser level are Money Ball, Alan Sorkin’s movie about business and baseball; Restrepo, Tim Hetherington’s documentary report on American soldiers in Afghanistan; My Week with Marilyn, the English film about Marilyn Monroe and Sir Laurence Olivier, played brilliantly by Michele Williams and Kenneth Branagh; The Artist and Hugo, both films about the silent era with the former being Belgian and the latter by Martin Scorsese; Page 1:The New York Times, a cinema verite exploration of the newspaper industry; and Harry Potter and the Deadly Hallows, the Part 2 and final chapter of the Potter oeuvre, starring Daniel Radcliffe, with a focus on our sensibility for the future.
Also of interest to me was Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy, a detailed and challenging presentation of the John Le Carre book; A Dangerous Method, ,which contrasted Freud’s interest in rationality to Jung’s parapsychology; Butiful, a stunning Spanish melodrama about poverty and redemption, featuring Javier Barden; The Lincoln Lawyer, a Los Angeles movie with a striking performance by Matthew McConaughey; and Georgia O’Keeffe starring Joan Allen as the artist and Jeremy Irons as Stieglitz, which was from a previous year but I saw it in 2011 on Netflix.

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Below is the thank you letter written to all of the groups involved in a wonderful service project today in support of Bridges Outreach, a Summit based organization that has been aiding local homeless friends for 30 years.

Dear Central Presbyterian Kindergartners, Stanley Family and friends, Fear the Gear, Columbia High School robotics and Washington Avenue School ...

Chatham Brownie Troop Makes Lunches for Bridges Outreach Program

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Included in the lunches were canned chicken with crackers, fruit cup, goldfish, cereal bar & a water bottle. Bridges Outreach, based in Summit, delivers meals, clothes and support to homeless and food insecure people in lower Manhattan, Newark and ...