Copyright © 2003 by Tony Medley

Following are the most and least enjoyable films I saw in 2003, 1 being Most and Least:


  1. Freaky Friday: I laughed harder and longer than in any movie Iíve ever seen thanks to Oscar-deserving performances by Jamie Lee Curtis and Lindsay Lohan as the mother and teenage daughter who swap bodies.
  2. Luther: This biography of Martin Luther with Joseph Fiennes and Peter Ustinov ranks with the best of the Ď60s religious biographies. Itís what a movie should be, intelligent, interesting, educational, and entertaining.
  3. Nowhere in Africa: Fascinating story of a Jewish couple escaping the Holocaust by living in the wilds of Kenya.
  4. Shattered Glass: Bravura performances by Peter Sarsgaard and Hayden Christensen highlight this true story of a devious writer who wrote fiction as fact for The New Republic and the editor who brought him down.
  5. Man on the Train: Compelling story of heterosexual male bonding by two unlikely men.
  6. Seabiscuit: Incredibly realistic race recreations highlight this telling of the life of the neurotic racehorse that won the heart of a nation and the three men who made him a champion.
  7. Phone Booth: Colin Farrellís performance makes this unlikely story of a man trapped in a phone booth on Fifth Avenue by an unseen maniac with a high-powered rifle tense and believable.
  8. The Dancer Upstairs: John Malkovich directs a captivating Javier Bardem in this mystery set in an unnamed Central American country.
  9. Blind Spot: Hitlerís Secretary: For 90 minutes the woman who was Hitlerís secretary from 1942-45 tells us what he was like in everyday life, and itís mesmerizing.
  10. Swimming Pool: A writer, Charlotte Rampling, goes to her publisherís vacation home in France to write her new novel and strange things happen. Whatís going on here? Worth watching to find out.
  11. Elf: A brilliant Will Farrell as an ingenuous man raised as an elf at the North Pole who goes to New York to find his real father, James Caan, and wins everybodyís affection.
  12. Bend it like Beckham: A young woman, Indian teenager Parminder Nagra, growing up in London wants to be a soccer player. Although it sounds horrible, itís funny and touching and Iím not a soccer afficionado.
  13. Till Human Voices Wake Us: The story of teenage lovers Lindley Joyner and 14 year old Brooke Harmon around a river is an emotional, evocative romantic fantasy.


  1. Bad Santa: A disgusting, abundantly profane, low class, unfunny disgrace. Shame on Billy Bob Thornton, Miramax, Bob & Harvey Weinstein, the Coen Brothers, and Director Terry Zwigoff for making this vulgarity and for releasing it at Christmas time as a blatant desecration of something many families hold dear.
  2. In the Cut: An often-stark-naked Meg Ryan attempts career suicide in this obscene, soft-core porn film.
  3. Legally Blonde II: Red, White and Blonde: Reese Witherspoon strikes out again.
  4. Charlieís Angels: Full Throttle: Inane, and thatís giving it the best of it.
  5. I Spy: As bad as a film can get (if you never saw Bad Santa).
  6. Daredevil: Well, maybe I spoke too soon.
  7. Malibuís Most Wanted: Aimed at the single digit IQ.
  8. A Mighty Wind: This mockumentary is a mighty bore made by people who donít have the first clue about the folk music of the Ď60ís.
  9. Head of State: Chris Rock gets the hat trick plus one for incompetence as he wrote, produced, directed, and starred in this absurdity.
  10. Confessions of a Dangerous Mind: Is George Clooney serious?
  11. Dark Blue: Another profane, unentertaining film by the prolifically untalented writer-director, Ron Shelton.
  12. League of Extraordinary Gentlemen: Sean Connery proves that it takes more than Sean Connery to make a film enjoyable.
  13. Uptown Girls & My Bossís Daughter: In the class of I Spy and Daredevil.

 December 23, 2003

 The End