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The Best Films of 2008

Honorable mention: Grace is Gone (which would've probably topped last year's list had it been released in Canada)

10. Stuck: Gleefully brutal and downright fun, Stuck's tongue-in-cheek sensibilities set it apart from the majority of its low-budget horror brethren.

9. WALL-E: Pixar hits a home run yet again with this deceptively simple story about a robot in love.

8. Seven Pounds: An unapologetic tear-jerker, Seven Pounds' excessively manipulative modus operandi proves easy to overlook thanks to Will Smith's absolutely riveting performance.

7. The Secret Life of Bees: Perhaps even more shamelessly calculating than Seven Pounds, The Secret Life of Bees nevertheless packs an unexpectedly powerful emotional punch.

6. Slumdog Millionaire: Breezy and engaging, Slumdog Millionaire marks the latest audacious and visually sumptuous effort from filmmaker Danny Boyle.

5. Revolutionary Road: Though it's looking less and less likely that he'll ever top Road to Perdition, Sam Mendes still manages to transform what could've been a drab domestic drama into a sporadically electrifying piece of work.

4. The Dark Knight: The best comic-book movie ever made, period.

3. The Wrestler: Mickey Rourke's undeniably indelible performance ranks at the very top of The Wrestler's list of plentiful pleasures.

2. Boy A: Criminally overlooked, Boy A - anchored by Andrew Garfield's hypnotic performance - boasts a haunting storyline that's ideally complemented by John Crowley's periodically breathtaking visuals.

1. Let the Right One In: Unquestionably the most entertaining and flat-out inventive vampire movie ever made, Let the Right One In builds a seriously charming coming-of-age story around a beautifully acted and visually stunning horror flick. An unforgettable piece of work.

The Worst Films of 2008

10. Quantum of Solace: Stripped of familiar elements and saddled with an irritatingly jittery sense of style, Quantum of Solace transforms James Bond into tragically bland action hero.

9. In the Name of the King: A Dungeon Siege Tale: It wouldn't be a "worst of" list without something from the epically untalented Uwe Boll.

8. Semi-Pro: Will Ferrell's impressive run of underwhelming comedies reaches its nadir with this hopelessly ineffective piece of work.

7. Funny Games: A disastrous remake of a disastrous original, Funny Games is as pointlessly mean and eye-rollingly avant-garde as one might've expected.

6. 21: This egregiously bland adaptation of Ben Mezrich's book has nothing to offer even the most gung-ho gambler.

5. The Tracey Fragments: Director Bruce McDonald's relentlessly experimental visuals - coupled with a storyline that's beyond stale - cements The Tracey Fragments' place as a pretentious, flat-out dull exercise in art-house pointlessness.

4. Be Kind Rewind: An admittedly irresistible premise is thoroughly squandered by filmmaker Michel Gondry, as the filmmaker's unapologetically low-rent sensibilities alienate the viewer virtually from the word go.

3. One Missed Call: Let this mark the death knell of the J-horror-remake fad.

2. Blindness: Jose Saramago's notoriously unfilmable novel becomes one of the worst "prestige" movies of all time, as director Fernando Meirelles' ugly sense of style is matched by Don McKellar's impossibly heavy-handed screenplay.

1. War, Inc.: Easily the worst film of John Cusack's career, War, Inc.'s aggressively unsubtle modus operandi transforms it into an unusually interminable, downright hateful experience.

© David Nusair