Behold: possibly the internet's only 2010 Year in Film wrap up with no mention of The Social Network in sight. Our top ten most viewed Film stories of the year cover some perennial hot-on-the-interwebs subjects–sex, drugs and Roman Polanski–as well as a few less-likely to hit Google Trends (Who knew Noah Baumbach was such a traffic magnet that three stories including his name would make our Top 10?)

So, counting down from 10 to 1….

10. “How to Hallucinate Without Drugs”

By Karina Longworth

September 23, 2010

We're sure the popularity of this review of the new Gaspar Noe film Enter the Void has everything to do with the Irreversible director's fanbase, and nothing to do with its servicey title, nor with the phrase, “impregnate his sister and suck on her tits”:

Enter the Void may, in the end, be an extremely elaborate formal exercise about every man's desire to crawl back into the womb, turned up a loud notch visually and adapted into every brother's apparently latent compulsion to both impregnate his sister and suck on her tits. But, dude, I could stare at this movie for days and not get tired of the sensation.

Credit: Photo by Kevin Scanlon

Credit: Photo by Kevin Scanlon

9. “Driving Mr. Greenberg”

By Karina Longworth

March 11, 2010

In this interview, the director of Kicking and Screaming, The Squid and the Whale and Greenberg discussed learning to drive at age 40, mentoring the mumblecore generation, and the sick allure of the Manic Pixie Dream Girl:

“Those characters are always presented as saviors, but the reality is, they're getting some neurotic, perverse fulfillment, or lack of fulfillment, by getting involved with this asshole,” Baumbach notes. And for a man caught in a real-life Florence's web, “those women are generally much more interesting because they're depressed and fucked up.”

8. “Movie Reviews: After the Cup, Shrek Forever After, Sex and the City”

By Various Authors

May 27, 2010

Since this story compiled a number of short film reviews at one URL, it's hard to pinpoint the big draw, but if we'd have to guess, we'd give credit to Ella Taylor's blistering takedown of Sex and the City 2:

Sarah Jessica Parker is now 45 years old, and, frankly, I cannot stomach another moment of the simpering, mincing, hair-tossing, eyelash-batting little-girl shtick she's been pulling ever since L.A. Story.

7. “Sundance's Rebel Yell”

By Karina Longworth

February 5, 2010

This dispatch from the Sundance Film Festival includes first looks at some of the year's biggest indie hits–The Kids Are All Right, Cyrus, Blue Valentine–and also chronicles the event's effort to rise out of the ashes of the recession:

This year, free stuff was generally harder to come by. But while the Main Street party scene suddenly slowed midweek, theater crowds stayed steady (a screening of buzzy social-media doc Catfish on the festival's second Thursday filled every seat, with dozens of wait-listers turned away). In the festival's final days, films began to sell, which was a surprise. After endless “hard times” hype, every sale announcement had the aura of a tiny miracle.

6. “Strange Death Fellows”

By Ernest Hardy

April 8, 2010

With Death at a Funeral, Neil LaBute–the filmmaker best known for Nurse Betty, In the Company of Men and the disastrous Nic Cage remake of The Wicker Man–remade a British flick as a raunchy comedy with a primarily black cast.

It hasn't really been that long since the last great movement of civil rights and women's rights and the sexual revolution, where that slice of white American male felt pushed out and put upon. It's sort of like you keep letting other people in the elevator until, “Don't get too close. I need my space. I'm used to the whole damned thing.”

5. “The Human Centipede: Girl-Man-Girl Interrupted”

By Karina Longworth

May 6. 2010

The year's most revolting horror movie concept wasn't that explicit in practice, according to our review:

Yes, The Human Centipede depicts three live humans surgically attached so that food fed to one has to pass through the other two, but the film itself is not as scat-pornographic as you might think; there's no excrement on-screen. (That said, when spoken in Centipede, the line “Swallow it, bitch!” gruesomely transcends its usual hard-core-porn context.)

4. “Sofia Coppola: Lost at the Chateau Marmont”

By Karina Longworth

December 17, 2010

Our Holiday Movie Preview cover story took a look at Sofia Coppola and her long road from Paris Hilton-esque party girl in the 90s, to Oscar winner for Lost in Translation in 2004, to her new film, the stripped-down Somewhere, shot at Hollywood's Chateau Marmont:

It's the site where John Belushi and Helmut Newton died, where sometime Coppola muse Scarlett Johansson allegedly had sex with Benicio Del Toro in an elevator (an event nodded to in Somewhere), from which Britney Spears was — allegedly! — banned for “smearing her dinner on her face.” It is an official landmark, No. 151 on the city's list of Historic-Cultural Monuments. In contemporary pop culture, it's a symbol of Peak L.A. — a concentrated dose of a certain fantasy version of this city's secret life.

3. “Alice in Chains: Tim Burton in La-La Land”

By Karina Longworth

March 6, 2010

Tim Burton's Alice in Wonderland was one of the highest grossing films of 2010. When we talked to him way back in February, he was bothered by the suggestion that Disney was trying to market the movie to the Twilight crowd:

“I wouldn't even know what that means. I saw part of Twilight on a plane. It's like — well, it's like Alice in Wonderland. It's, like, surreal. It's, like, WHATEVER! I focus on making the movie, and I leave the charts and the graphs and whatever to the …” He pauses for effect, leans forward, curls his fingers into the rabbit ears of the heavy-scare quote. “ 'Experts.' ”

2. The Top 10 Films of 2010

By Karina Longworth

December 23, 2010

Our Critic's Picks for the best films of the year–including new works by Harmony Korine, Roman Polanski and Martin Scorsese–as well thoughts on phenoms like Inception and Jackass:

Inception both conquered the 2010 zeitgeist and helped define it. It was merely the biggest rendition of the year's most prevalent movie theme: How do you know that what you think is real is actually, like, really real? How do you know that you're not being fucked with?

And the number one most read Film story on this year…

1. Tarantino's Angst

By Karina Longworth

August 5, 2010

This piece on Quentin Tarantino's Jackie Brown was by far the most popular film story of the year. If page views are an indicator of what the people want, then what you people want is a moderately in-depth reconsideration of a film originally released 13 years previously, on the occasion of a one-night-only screening out by the airport.

Released on the final weekend of 1997, Jackie Brown was so hotly anticipated, it was all but destined to underwhelm. Making the world wait three years for his feature-length directorial follow-up to the phenomenally successful Pulp Fiction, Tarantino spent the interim trying even the truest fan's patience with talk-show and tabl­oid antics (“I scrutinized photos of Tarantino and Mira Sorvino and decided that he didn't deserve a woman so completely adorable,” admitted critic David Edelstein in Slate), and vanity misfires (in his one-star review of Destiny Turns on the Radio, Roger Ebert pejoratively dismissed director-turned-actor Tarantino as the “Flavor of the Year”). Released during the same holiday (and Oscar) season as Titanic, even a give-'em-what-they-want Pulp sequel would have had a tough time fighting the end of the century's designated mass movie phenomenon for pop culture supremacy.

LA Weekly