I had a very hard time making this list. The number one choice was easy, though; Avatar absolutely blew me away, so much so that I had to see it twice (the first time I have seen a movie multiple times in the theatre in many years). The Dark Knight was a close second. It's rare that a sequel is better than the first movie, though The Dark Knight (and Spider-Man 2 further down the list) did just that. Batman Begins also appeared on my list, a bit lower than its successor. The Wrestler comes in at third for me. As someone who has covered the wrestling business rather extensively over the years, I was thrilled with this film's portrayal of the harsh realities confronting pro wrestlers. Specifically, what happens when life on the big stage is over, and what happens when the time comes to adapt back to the real world. The 40-Year-Old-Virgin, while definitely no dramatic masterpiece, is a classic of its kind. It's one of those movies that you can watch over and over again, and laugh just as hard every time. Reign Over Me is one of the most underrated films of the decade, as I felt it was worthy of being deemed a dramatic masterpiece. Don Cheadle was brilliant as always, and Adam Sandler pulled out a heart wrenching and believable performance (something few thought he was capable of). The scene where "Drive All Night" by Bruce Springsteen plays in the background as Sandler finally opens up and talks about his fallen wife and kids was one of the more wrenching emotional scenes of the past ten years. - Ryan Droste
1. Avatar, James Cameron, 2009
2. The Dark Knight, Christopher Nolan, 2008
3. The Wrestler, Darren Aronofsky, 2008
4. The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King, Peter Jackson, 2003
5. Almost Famous, Cameron Crowe, 2000
6. Spider-Man 2, Sam Raimi, 2004
7. Star Trek, J.J. Abhrams, 2009
8. Batman Begins, Christopher Nolan, 2005
9. The 40-Year-Old Virgin, Judd Apatow, 2005
10. Reign Over Me, Mike Binder, 2007
Ryan Droste teaches middle and high school in Janesville, Iowa.
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