While it was great to see heartthrob Justin Chon on the big screen in New Moon this year you knew a vampire film by Park Chan-Wook was going to be exactly what you thought it would be - visceral, thought provoking, imagery that catches you by surprise when so many other films don't almost making you think "Did he just redefine the whole genre?".
Park took the Hollywood veneer off and gave us not just one of the most unique stories the year had to offer but did it in a way that gave us a whole knew perspective stripping it to its core: A love story. A portrait of longing and desire. The juxtaposition of where we are versus who we really are - and that balance - that loosely tethered line we all walk between doing what we want and what we need to do.
In that way - cinematically engaging on every single level -- I think the answer to the above is a simple yes.
Runner-Up: Låt den rätte komma in (aka Let The Right One In)
While the 2008 film Let The Right One In premiered in fall of 2008 in the U.S. it was in limited release with the DVD coming out in 2009 finally giving U.S. viewers a chance to see the Swedish film - and if I wouldn't have seen Thirst last year - this definitely would have topped the list because it was just that good.
Exit Hamid Karzai, Afghan Legend
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