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Best chick flicks of 2009


Cast of the Proposal (AP Photo/Chris Pizzello)

Did you miss a juicy romantic comedy or delicious tear jerker in the theaters last year? 2009 movies are going on DVD, so line up your rental queues now. Here are the Top 10 Best Girlie Movies of 2009. (Synopses are listed on the Rotten Tomatoes website.)

10. The Ugly Truth (Katherine Heigl and Gerard Butler) The battle of the sexes heats up in Columbia Pictures' comedy The Ugly Truth. Abby Richter (Katherine Heigl) is a romantically challenged morning show producer whose search for Mr. Perfect has left her hopelessly single. She's in for a rude awakening when her bosses team her with Mike Chadway (Gerard Butler), a hardcore TV personality who promises to spill the ugly truth on what makes men and women tick. Yummy Gerard and beautifully funny Katherine make this a great girl's get-together film.--© Sony Pictures

9. The Proposal (SANDRA BULLOCK and RYAN REYNOLDS) Publishing powerhouse Margaret Tate (Bullock, TWO WEEKS NOTICE) is used to getting her way. She bullies her ambitious assistant, Andrew Paxton (Reynolds, DEFINITELY, MAYBE), earning the ire of all the underlings at Colden Books in New York City. But Margaret, a native Canadian, finds her career in jeopardy when she is denied a visa and learns she will be sent northward. She forces Andrew to become her fiancé, but she’ll have to take a trip home to Alaska with him to prove to U.S. Immigration that their impending union is genuine.  Bullock has been one of Julia Roberts’s successors to the America’s-sweetheart crown since she starred in SPEED, but this comedy has her challenging her image with hilarious ease. Reynolds--who could be just window-dressing with his good looks and easy charm--is as adept with sarcasm as he is with a smile. The plot of Proposal has very few surprises, but the fun interplay between Bullock and Reynolds keeps the film fresh.

8. My Sister's Keeper (ABIGAIL BRESLIN and CAMERON DIAZ) Nick Cassavetes directs another tearjerking literary adaptation with this drama based on Jodi Picoult's controversial novel. Cameron Diaz plays Sara, the domineering mother of Kate (Sofia Vassilieva, MEDIUM), a young girl with cancer. Sara’s other daughter, 11-year-old Anna (Abigail Breslin), was conceived just to serve as a donor for her sick sister. On the outskirts of the family are father Brian (Jason Patric), who feels unable to stand up to his wife’s strength, and son Jesse (Evan Ellingson), who craves attention in the face of Kate’s illness. But the complicated situation gets more difficult when Anna hires a lawyer (played by the always excellent Alec Baldwin), so that she can control her own body and say "no" to giving a kidney to her sister. Cassavetes and Picoult both traffic in tears, so My Sister's Keeper  is a perfect match between director and source writer. Call up your sisters, the biological ones and spiritual ones, and have a good sob-fest.


Twilight Saga: New Moon. Courtesy of Summit Entertainment

7. New Moon (ROBERT PATTINSON and KRISTEN STEWART) In the second installment of Stephenie Meyer’s TWILIGHT series, the romance between mortal and vampire soars to a new level as BELLA SWAN (Kristen Stewart) delves deeper into the mysteries of the supernatural world she yearns to become part of—only to find herself in greater peril than ever before. Following Bella’s ill-fated 18th birthday party, EDWARD CULLEN (Robert Pattinson) and his family abandon the town of Forks, Washington, in an effort to protect her from the dangers inherent in their world. With the help of her childhood friend JACOB BLACK (Taylor Lautner), Bella refurbishes an old motorbike to carry her on her adventures. Bella’s frozen heart is gradually thawed by her budding relationship with Jacob, a member of the mysterious Quileute tribe, who has a supernatural secret of his own.  In a race against the clock, New Moon uncovers the secret of the Quileutes and Edward’s true motivation for leaving her. She also faces the prospect of a potentially deadly reunion with her beloved that is a far cry from the one she’d hoped for. This teenie-bopper is no less eye-candy for us more mature ladies. It's perfectly legal to gawk at Taylor Lautner's 8-pack, so have a cat-call fest in the privacy of your own cougar den.

 6. Precious (GABOUREY SIDIBE) Precious is not your typical chick flick. It is, however, a vibrant, honest and resoundingly hopeful film about the human capacity to grow and overcome. Dealing with difficult women's and girl's issues, this is a bonding film for those of us who know what it's like to feel unpretty, unwanted, and unloved. 

Set in Harlem in 1987, it is the story of Claireece “Precious” Jones (Gabourey Sidibe), a sixteen-year-old African-American girl born into a life no one would want. She’s pregnant for the second time by her absent father; at home, she must wait hand and foot on her mother (Mo’Nique), a poisonously angry woman who abuses her emotionally and physically. School is a place of chaos, and Precious has reached the ninth grade with good marks and an awful secret: she can neither read nor write.

Lionsgate in association with Oprah Winfrey and Tyler Perry present A Lee Daniels Entertainment / Smokewood Entertainment Group Production of PRECIOUS: BASED ON THE NOVEL ‘PUSH’ BY SAPPHIRE, directed by Lee Daniels from a screenplay by Geoffrey Fletcher based on the novel Push by Sapphire. --© Lionsgate
 


Gerard Butler: AP Photo/Joel Ryan, file

5. Time Traveler’s Wife (ERIC BANA and RACHEL McADAMS) Based on the best-selling book about a love that transcends time. Clare has been in love with Henry her entire life. She believes they are destined to be together, even though she never knows when they will be separated: Henry is a time traveler -- cursed with a rare genetic anomaly that causes him to live his life on a shifting timeline, skipping back and forth through his lifespan with no control. Despite the fact that Henry’s travels force them apart with no warning, he is her one true love. Clare desperately tries to build a life as The Time Traveler's Wife. --© Warner Bros  

4. Management (JENNIFER ANISTON and STEVE ZAHN) The often goofy, always likable Steve Zahn plays Mike Cranshaw, a man with little ambition but lots of heart who works at his parents’ motel in small-town Arizona. When paint-saleswoman Sue Claussen (Aniston) stops at the inn, Mike immediately plots an awkward plan to seduce her. Things go better than either of them would have guessed, but Sue still leaves for her home in Maryland. Mike impulsively follows her east, beginning an uncomfortable but heartfelt courtship that takes the road less traveled. MANAGEMENT balances its star power (A-list actress Aniston) with its indie roots (theatrical distributor Samuel Goldwyn Films) to make a movie that doesn’t fit the rubric of either genre. It’s too quirky for a studio film, but it’s sweet enough that it shouldn’t scare away any fans of Aniston’s work. Thanks to Zahn’s performance, it’s hard not to feel devoted to his character and to understand Sue’s (reluctant) attraction. Fans of the cringe-worthy humor of comedies like THE OFFICE will enjoy squirming through this unlikely romance.

 3. He’s Just Not That Into You (DREW BARRYMORE, JENNIFER CONNELLY, BEN AFFLECK, JENNIFER ANISTON, SCARLETT JOHANSSON) Based on the wildly popular bestseller from Sex and the City scribes Greg Behrendt and Liz Tuccillo, He's Just Not That Into You tells the stories of a group of interconnected, Baltimore-based twenty- and thirtysomethings as they navigate their various relationships from the shallow end of the dating pool through the deep, murky waters of married life, trying to read the signs of the opposite sex... and hoping to be the exceptions to the "no-exceptions" rule.

If you've ever sat by the phone wondering why he said he would call, but didn't, or if you can't figure out why she doesn't want to sleep with you anymore, or why your relationship just isn't going to the next level... he (or she) is just not that into you.

The film boasts an all-star cast, including Academy Award® winner Ben Affleck (Good Will Hunting, Hollywoodland) as Neil; Jennifer Aniston (Marley & Me) as Beth; Drew Barrymore (Music and Lyrics) as Mary; Academy Award® winner Jennifer Connelly (A Beautiful Mind, The Day the Earth Stood Still) as Janine; Kevin Connolly (HBO's Entourage) as Conor; Bradley Cooper (Yes Man) as Ben; Ginnifer Goodwin (Walk the Line, HBO's Big Love) as Gigi; Scarlett Johansson (Vicky Cristina Barcelona) as Anna; Kris Kristofferson (Dreamer: Inspired by a True Story) as Ken; and Justin Long (Live Free or Die Hard) as Alex.

He's Just Not That Into You will be distributed domestically by Warner Bros. Pictures, a Warner Bros. Entertainment Company. --© Warner Bros
 


Gabourey Sidibe in a scene from "Precious." (AP Photo/Lionsgate, Anne Marie Fox)

2. The Merry Gentlemen (MICHAEL KEATON and KELLY McDONALD) This little indie gem did well with critics, and is a beautifully heart-touching story. A delicacy of tone transforms Michael Keaton's The Merry Gentleman from what might have been a pedestrian tale into a beautifully romantic fable. Enter a worn, alcoholic detective to form the third party in a very unusual triangle, and this dark, soulful, sometimes-funny story begins to unfold.  The Merry Gentleman features Keaton in the lead role opposite a gifted leading lady, Kelly Macdonald, who is at once enigmatic and iconographic in her portrayal of a woman trying to find her way in a cold world. The cop, played by Tom Bastounes, is a disheveled embodiment of male cluelessness and relentless pursuit. Together they are lonely figures in an urban landscape, one that exemplifies the isolation and need for personal relationships that we all carry with us. This is a more serious film, but one that will touch your heart and bring you and your girlfriends closer together.-- © Sundance Film Festival

1. Julie and Julia (AMY ADAMS and MERYL STREEP) Meryl Streep is Julia Child and Amy Adams is Julie Powell in writer-director Nora Ephron’s adaptation of two bestselling memoirs: Powell’s Julie & Julia and My Life in France, by Julia Child with Alex Prud’homme.

Our favorite this year as an overall movie. It has the class we expect from Streep and Adams, the heart, the wit, the joy and hope that make these films worth watching. Based on two true stories,Julie & Julia intertwines the lives of two women who, though separated by time and space, are both at loose ends...until they discover that with the right combination of passion, fearlessness and butter, anything is possible. --© Sony
 

What were your favorites?: This is just a sampling of the lovely films that came out in 2009. Which ones tickled your funny bone or touched your heart? Comment below.

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