Best Movies of 2011

As the curtain falls on the 2011 movie season, it's not only time to reflect back upon all the overly-salted pretzels eaten, the gallons of soda chugged, and the tubs of artery-clogging gelatinous goo (posing as hot butter) poured over calorie-loaded popcorn, but it's also a moment to pause and think about all the great films that graced the cinemas this year.

The movie year certainly got off to a rocky start leading us to wonder if there'd even be enough quality films to put to a best-of list, but a late Fall rush of excellent fare saved the day and moved 2011's meter up from "piss poor" to "mediocre" - an assessment that was substantiated by the year's abysmal box office take.

We thank the heavens that such legendary directors as Woody Allen, Martin Scorcese and Alexander Payne - as well as relative up-and-comers like Nicholas Winding Refn, and Michel Hazanavicius - stepped up to rescue us from the depths of cinematic Valhalla where Season of the Witch, The Roommate, and Something Borrowed are still looking for an audience. Our personal thanks to each and every one of you!

Below is our list of the best films and performances that 2011 had to offer ranked within several major categories. If your favorite of 2011 isn't on the list, let us know about it in the comments section at the end of the article. Cheers, and hope we see you at the movies in 2012.

Best Picture

Best Director

Best Actor

Best Actress

Best Supporting Actor

  • Albert Brooks - Drive
  • Christopher Plummer - Beginners
  • Alex Shaffer - Win Win
  • Max von Sydow - Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close

Best Supporting Actress

Best Documentary

Best Foreign Language Film

  • 13 Assassins
  • Happy Happy
  • Trollhunter
  • Elite Squad: The Enemy Within
  • I Saw the Devil
  • Point Blank
  • The Skin I Live In
  • Last Circus

Best Animated Film

  • Rango
  • The Adventures of Tintin

Best Cinematography

Best Screenplay