WHILE EVERYONE ELSE is cranking out top 10 lists of 2009's best films—movies which you've already heard of and probably already seen—we're highlighting 10 from '09 that were overlooked, underappreciated, or seen by depressingly few people. And for that extra depression factor, we've included their current domestic box office grosses, via boxofficemojo.com! (For comparison's sake: The Twilight Saga: New Moon has, thus far, made $270 million.)
Humpday ($407,377)—A discomfiting comedy about what happens when two straight dudes decide to bone. It's pretty brilliant.
The Hurt Locker ($12.6 million)—Kathryn Bigelow's smart, nerve-wracking action flick might be the best film of the year.
Observe and Report ($24 million)—A comedy by the director of The Foot Fist Way and Eastbound & Down. 2009's funniest movie that no one saw.
Bronson ($102,792)—This portrait of Britain's most famous prisoner is witty, visceral, and unexpectedly charming.
Gentlemen Broncos ($113,682)— Bizarre, awkward, and insightful, Gentlemen Broncos will make you hate Jared and Jerusha Hess (Napoleon Dynamite) slightly less, and it will make you love Jemaine Clement (Flight of the Conchords) a lot more.
Sleep Dealer ($80,136)—This sci-fi flick's politics are only slightly less subtle than Avatar's, and its special effects were apparently made using an Atari 2600, but it's still worth checking out.
Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs ($122.6 million)—The unexpectedly fantastic film of the year, animated or otherwise: clever, creative, hilarious, loveable.
Sugar ($1 million)—The latest from Half Nelson directors Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck. "Truthful, heartbreaking, and beautiful," said Mercury Music Editor Ezra Ace Caraeff. Correct.
Tell Them Anything You Want (N/A)—A short, sharp documentary by Lance Bangs and Spike Jonze about Where the Wild Things Are author Maurice Sendak. It aired briefly on HBO; hopefully it'll turn up on the Wild Things DVD.
Goodbye Solo ($870,781)—One day director Ramin Bahrani is going to be a BIG DEAL, and when that happens I'll be all, "I TOLD YOU SO! WATCH GOODBYE SOLO! IT WILL MAKE YOU CRY!" And you will. Crybaby.