Best acting performance
“There Will Be Blood” (2007)
“There Will Be Blood” is the Daniel Day-Lewis show. Day-Lewis’ dominates the screen as Daniel Plainview, an oil man. It’s a solid story, and the cinematography is fantastic, but Day-Lewis is the reason the film captivates. He drank everyone’s milkshake. He drank them up!
An honorable mention to Johnny Depp as Capt. Jack Sparrow in “Pirates of the Caribbean: Curse of the Black Pearl.” Depp turned an otherwise humdrum movie into a fun blockbuster.
“The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King” (2003)
Despite all of the fake-out endings, the final part of the “Rings” trilogy was best. The first two parts of the story (and the first two films) had their fair share of action, but they often felt like setup pieces for “The Return of the King.”
Best zombie or vampire movie
“Shaun of the Dead” (2004)
Lots of competition in this decade between two of the most popular creatures on screen. But a comedy — a rom-zom-com (romantic zombie comedy) — was the best. “Shaun of the Dead” was gory at times, but hilarious? Always.
So much competition for this spot, but nothing was quite as memorable as the uproariously vulgar “Superbad.” Sure, the teens at a party thing has been done before, but never so well. A top “bromance,” as well.
Best computer-animated film
Computer animation isn’t a trend. It may not be the totality of the future, either, but it’s certainly here to stay. And so is Pixar, which finishes the decade wearing the same computer animation crown it claimed in the 1990s. The studio released a number of great films in the 2000s, but “WALL-E,” with its (often wordless) beauty, popping up in dystopia, takes the top spot.
Best acting performance
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