The Top 10 Movie Moments of 2010

Published 4 years ago by , Updated February 10th, 2012 at 11:49 am,

kick ass review 1 The Top 10 Movie Moments of 2010

As 2010 comes to an end, most sites are busy compiling top 10 lists ranking the best films of the year. While I always appreciate a good top 10 movie list, I’ve slowly come around to the opinion that at year’s end, it’s not just the discussion of entire films that dominates the talk around my holiday dinner table, but also the best scenes and/or moments that stuck in moviegoers’ minds.

So, following in the tradition started by our list of the best movie moments of 2009, I’d once again like to submit to you, the readers, Screen Rant’s top 10 movie moments of 2010.

This was an odd year in cinema. 2010 started off with moviegoers still caught up in the phenomenon of James Cameron’s Avatar; people were wondering just how prolific the implementation  of 3D would be in upcoming films, and Avatar’s financial success had some questioning the future direction of cinema as a whole. The addition of murky-colored, pop-up book post-converted 3D to the mix (Alice In Wonderland, Clash of the Titans) may have fattened Hollywood’s wallet, but did little to impress moviegoers.

There were some highly-anticipated films on the calender, but if you are a real movie geek, 2010 was truthfully more of a rest stop between 2009 and the years 2011-2012, which will be a time of geek Nirvana thanks to the biggest rollout of sci-fi and/or comic book movies ever (see: Thor, Green Lantern, Captain America, The Dark Knight Rises, Superman: Man of Steel, Cowboys & Aliens, etc., etc., etc…).

Yet, 2010 also offered us some truly entertaining movies as well. Whether they were original works (Inception, Black Swan), adaptations (The Social Network, True Grit), 3D event films (TRON: Legacy, How to Train Your Dragon) or even sequels (Toy Story 3), 2010 had some truly great moments worth remembering.

Honorable Mentions

There are parts of some films from the 2010 lineup that deserve mention, but not necessarily a spot on our list. This is primarily due to the fact that the items in question are general aspects of a film that impressed, rather than specific moments. Here are the aspects of certain movies that impressed us enough to warrant recognition:

Comic Con preview image5 Scott Pilgrim vs the World The Top 10 Movie Moments of 2010

The fight scenes in Scott Pilgrim vs. The World – Edgar Wright’s adaptation of this comic book cult fave was refreshingly  inventive and visually stunning, as evidenced by the wild and epic fight scenes between Scott Pilgrim (Michael Cera) and the evil exes of his geek-chic love-crush, Ramona (Mary Elizabeth Winstead). We couldn’t pick a particular favorite out of the six-round battle royal (was it Lucas Lee, Matthew Patel, Todd Ingram, Roxy, Gideon Graves or the Katayanagi twins?) so instead, the battles of Scott Pilgrim top our honorable mention list.

Tron Legacy Vehicles Featurette The Top 10 Movie Moments of 2010

The Grid battles of TRON: LegacyThe script was absolutely ridiculous and most of the movie involved characters sitting around spewing exposition that made no sense at all (ISOs? Identity disks? Clu is after what exactly?). However, TRON: Legacy did entertain whenever young Sam Flynn (Garrett Hedlund) followed in his father Kevin’s (Jeff Bridges) footsteps by competing in the gladiatorial games of The Grid, a digital world inside of a computer (…that’s apparently not hooked up to the Internet). The disc wars and lightcycle battles were a thrill for aging nerds everywhere, who could finally see the Tron universe they knew and (sort of) loved given a sleek modern-day 3D makeover. But once the wore off, TRON: Legacy had little else to offer.

Natalie Portman Black Swan TV spot The Top 10 Movie Moments of 2010

The total discomfort of Black Swan – Thanks to Darren Aronofsky, cinephiles now have a new game to play: Approach a friend and ask the question, “Wanna be really uncomfortable for about two hours?” and should they say yes (why wouldn’t they?), simply pop in Black Swan and press play. Dancing, stretching, massages, nail clipping, finger peeling, seduction, masturbation,  – all the things you love to do in life are transformed into cringe-worthy experiences thanks to the (genius?) of Aronofsky’s vision. Consider our dreams of being ballet stars officially over.

The Social Network Tyler and Cameron Winklevoss twins The Top 10 Movie Moments of 2010

The Winklevoss Twins - While we have an actual moment from The Social Network rated on our list, who didn’t love a double-dose of actor Armie Hammer as snide aristocrats the Winklevoss Twins? In a year where CGI doubles continued to infiltrate cinema (see: TRON: Legacy) the Winklevi truly were a technical achievement – and wonderfully hilarious character(s), to boot.

Continue to the Top 10 Movie Moments of 2010…

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  1. number one and two are perfect but it should be a tie. The hallway fight was breathtaking and awe inspiring but the ending of Toy Story 3 was almost too emotional. They were both perfect moments.

    • Agreed. One and two are perfect choices. In fact, I’d say that Inception stole any thunder that Tron Legacy MIGHT have had any potential for. That hotel fight is going to become a cliche much like the first Matrix movie’s “bullet time” effect. Remember that first moment when you saw bullet time and just went, “Oooooo!” with goosebumps all over?

  2. Love 1 & 2. Love the inclusion of Hit Girl, Toothless’ first flight, and Shutter Island. Great list.

  3. i almost started crying just reading your summary of Toy Story 3

    • Toy Story 3 definitely Number 1. Its super sad,I still cry everytime :(

  4. In a year where it looked like mediocrity was about to triumph, we got some cinematic gems, and numbers 1 & 2 are absolutely perfect, in their own unique way.

    Here’s hoping Toy Story 3 and Inception will get some love from the Academy.

  5. The end of Toy Story 3 was intense. I just saw the movie yesterday.

    • Congrats :D

  6. Another quality thought-provoking original article from SR! Kudos. Besides reading the news about the things I like, this is what I come here for. Thanks.

  7. I like most of these, my top favorites being The Book of Eli, Shutter Island, and Inception (the last two being in my top 20 favorite films ever now). I didnt get to see Inception in theater but when I saw it the other day the whole thing is breathtaking. Good picks, the only thing I would add is (the movie isnt the best I know) the scene of Gabriel coming to earth in Legion, in theaters that was pretty bad A with the trumpets of heaven going…oh and the Nun robbery scene in The Town.

  8. Good list. I was watching Toy Story 3 with my son yesterday( he is just putting it in our dvd player as am typing this). It is a very emotional scene when Andy leaves Woody and his toys to the little girl.

    I am surprised about the Book of Eli because not to many people liked the movie. I absolutely loved that film and the ending was a shocker..

    • Yeah I did see the ending to Shutter Island coming a mile away. I told my girl what was going happen by watching the preview of the film alone.

      Still, it was great movie and the story with what happened to his wife and family were both sad and terrifying.

      • I saw it too but not exactly how it panned out.

        • True…

          • But you are correct, its a great movie. Needs to be 3rd place in my opinion on that list.

  9. Book of eli needs to be top 5 also should include the fight scene under the bridge.

  10. sorry…anything that had the Expendables ranked above RED is kinda sad imho, would have ranked the Bruce Willis fight with Karl Urban inside the CIA to the dulcet tones of Aerosmith above the Expendables finale.

  11. Personally i would switch numbers 2 and 3 mainly because that inception scene to me wasn’t even really cool it just reminds me of that Nsync Video “Bye Bye Bye” (don’t ask me why). Cool moment to me in the inception movie was more or less the climax of waking up within the amount of level of dreams that they were in (if they ever did really wake up…cue up the soundtrack lol.) but i totally agree with number one… On my first viewing i saw it by myself so on the second viewing i know when to hold in the tears infront of company lol.

  12. This was a fantastic list guys

  13. I agree with 8 of the excerpts ( will not see anything with Cage in it so I know nothing about “Hit Girl’s performance) but if it was like the graphic novel than I am down. Such a terrible year for film, but you have included the best highlights of the year.

    • You should watch before judge.

  14. I agree with Expendables’ last 20 minutes, whatever flaws there were it at least delivered the pay off big time at the end.

    The Iron Man / War Machine dual assault was definitely a cool moment.

    Sorry and I know i’m in the minority here but Hit Girl taking on a fortress of armed gangsters with next to no back up and no apparent superpowers, oh and also the fact that shes aged eleven, definitely one of the low points in movies from 2010.

  15. Not happy with number one, number two and number four. Scott Pilgrim and Kick-Ass are so much better.

    • Totally happy with number one, number two and number four, but Scott Pilgrim is definitely my favorite movie of the year and I would have liked to see more than an honorable mention. It’s definitely hard to pick a favorite moment, but I’d probably give it to the epic bass duel between Scott and Todd. Either that or Lucas Lee’s introduction. I can’t take the Universal fanfare seriously anymore ever since seeing Chris Evans crack his neck to the tune.

      As far as Toy Story 3 goes, though, I’d have given it to the garbage pit scene over the ending. The toys silently clasping hands and accepting their fate together was a fantastically done scene that I thought was way more emotionally effective then the final farewell scene. The problem with that last scene, however well done it may be (and I’ll admit it IS very good), is that we never really got to connect with Andy, and even Woody’s connection with Andy was only superficially touched on in comparison to his connection with Buzz and the gang. It didn’t feel like a goodbye to me, especially since the audience didn’t follow Andy and leave the toys with him, we stayed behind and watched Woody and Buzz happily mingle with the new toys. It doesn’t feel like an ending, so much as a new beginning.

  16. Black Swan the entire movie was an amazing experience. The only movie I clapped at the end, if you saw it you kinda get why.

    But all those moments in Toy Story 3 were some of the most moving scenes in cinema I’ve ever seen. The garbage pit and the ending in particular.

  17. I agree with most your list but i didnt like Scott Pilgrim so i turned it off. and as far as Shutter Island i kept falling asleep during it.

  18. I wasn’t stifiling quiet sniffles during Toy Story 3′s final moments, I was staring wide-eyed and slack-jawed at the screen, heartbroken and openly crying, as was everyone around me in the theater. Knowing that everyone around me was feeling exactly as I was feeling just made the experience even more unforgettable.

    Toy Story 3′s finale is the stuff of legends, in my opinion.

  19. I agree with every honorable mention you listed. But when the list itself started, I was disappointed with every entry I read until I reached the Top 5. I can’t agree with you on 10-6. I just can’t.

    And while I’ve only seen “Toy Story 3″ once in theatres and I didn’t cry at the end, I have come to realize that I’m an extreme elitist when it comes to movie watching and have a problem enjoying an animated movie. So I might have watched “Toy Story 3″ with heavy prejudice. So I’m not going to complain about your #1.

    Also because of that elitism, I haven’t seen “How To Train Your Dragon” and, apparently, didn’t fully appreciate “Toy Story 3″ or “Up” for that matter. I’m trying to work on it.

  20. I got goosebumps just from reading about the end of Toy Story.
    I strongly agree with the top 2 picks, but I think Scott Pilgrim should have had a specific scene somewhere on the list. Maybe the whole vegan scene?

    And why is How to Train Your Dragon on this list? I found it to be absolutely forgettable, especially compared to how amazing Toy Story was. Dreamworks can never be at the same level as Pixar and they know it.

  21. Finally some love for Scott Pilgrim! Easily one of my favourite movies of the year and totally innovative. I’m sure it will get knocked out of the top spot when I see Inception since I couldn’t afford to go see it in the theatre.

  22. all these movies were awesome

  23. I agree with everything here except for The Book Of Eli. After it is revealed that he was blind I actualy yelled WTF. Thank god I watched it at home. I was with that movie every step of the way until that point and I now consider it my Worst movie of the year….

  24. I would rank Toy Story’s goodbyes at No#1 as well.
    I strongly question number three, and would also zap out Kick-Ass. Both films, especially Kick, arre two of the most overrated films of the past year.

    In their stead in no order I replace them with:

    - The son being mistaken for gay in “The Kids Are Alright’

    - The survival “amputation” in ’127 Hours’.

    Honorable Mention besides Scott Pilgrim and Tron?

    - the death of Derrick Jones in ‘Piranha 3D’

  25. When Hit Girl delivered the C bomb and the D bomb, it was just so adorable,,,

    The fact that she’s not up for an Oscar upsets me deeply!!!

  26. Ok i agree about Inception hallway run around, Red’s hilarious scene, and Hit Girl’s amazing performance, but Toy Story 3 having the best scene? if it was on the list like number 5 or something i wouldn’t care. But number 1? just wow horrible.

    By the way what about that moment in Iron Man 2 when he had lasers come out and destroy everything around him? that was a very awesome scene.

    • I agree with you Uzi – I’m not much of a Toy Story fan and I thought the Iron Man 2 scene deserved to be on here too.

      BUT we work on these features as a team and I was voted down :-)

  27. 127 Hours should have gotten some love here the movie was 1 0f the best of the year! OK, so I’m a little opinionated. It’s only for the fact that the firts 15 minutes had me wondering what are they going to do now? When the movie ended it had me tied to my seat. Great movie.

    • david,

      127 Hours was a runner up in our list.


  28. i love that you guys end your list with such a sentimental movie moment! Your all for the kick ass, hard ass, K-Pow action movie moments and the gritty, awkward and sharp dramatic moments and then suddenly you k-pow us with your top movie moment being toy story 3!?!

    • sophie,

      I guess we’re just a bunch of softies with a hard shell. 8)


  29. it definately should been jeff bridges, but i would have chosen the hell-bent no-hands mom riding with the horse’s reins in his teeth…bridges did the scene himself, no stunt man and i gotta say i’m impressed, after all the guy is 60. i understand he’s a very good horseman, but he earned his salary that day