Our poll last week asked you to identify which of 2011′s blockbuster hits was your favorite. To date, the ‘Harry Potter’ finale has taken the lead, followed by ‘X-Men: First Class’ and ‘Rise of the Planet of the Apes’. Unfortunately, good movies don’t always manage to become blockbusters. This week, we’ll take a look at some of last year’s most critically-acclaimed films, and let you pick your favorite from that bunch.
This is the time of year when various critics (and critics’ groups) release Top 10 lists. Many of these wind up highlighting a lot of obscure independent and foreign films that may have never played near you. For the purposes of this poll, I’ve used this article from MetaCritic to identify the 15 best-reviewed wide-release films of 2011, based on the aggregate scores accumulated across numerous review sources.
MetaCritic has a separate list for limited release movies in the same article, but as I said, you probably haven’t had an opportunity to see many (or any) of those. The documentary ‘ My Perestroika’, for example, played on only 19 screens at its widest release. My favorite film of the year, ‘The Artist‘, is still only playing on 172 screens. We’re going to stick with movies that most of you actually had a chance to see.
It turns out that the year’s biggest blockbuster, ‘Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2′, was also the best-reviewed wide-release film with an 87% aggregate rating. I can’t complain with that. I liked the movie a lot, and thought that it was a fitting closer for the franchise.
Of these 15 titles, I’ve seen about half of them: ‘Harry Potter’, ‘Drive’, ‘Midnight in Paris’, ‘Mission: Impossible’, ‘The Muppets’, ‘Source Code’ and ‘Super 8′. I’m going to go a little against the grain here when I say that I thought ‘Drive’ was absolutely terrible, and deserves to be on a year’s worst list. My pick for best of this group is ‘Midnight in Paris’. I also thought that ‘Mission: Impossible’ and (as mentioned) ‘Harry Potter’ were pretty great.
Which of these critical darlings was your favorite of 2011?