01/11/2012 02:39 pm ET Updated Mar 12, 2012

Top Ten Movies of 2011

2011 was the rare and beautiful year that was so packed with surprising and innovative films, it was seriously difficult to boil it down to just ten. It was a particularly fruitful year on the domestic front; beside the American films both independent (The Future, Take Shelter) and big-budget mainstream (The Tree of Life) included on my list, there were also just-barely-weeded-out gems like the hysterical Bridesmaids, left out only because I wanted more, more, more of the ensemble cast; the haunting film that introduced us to Elizabeth Olsen, Martha Marcy May Marlene, and the low-key but stunning Cold Weather, both of which are highly deserving of honorable mentions.

Top Ten Films of 2011