2011: An exceptional year for movies

George Clooney and Shailene Woodley star in "The Descendants."

Story highlights

  • Clooney has worked hard at overcoming his heartthrob image and expanding his range
  • Jessica Chastain deserves special praise -- she was in seven films in 2011
  • Shailene Woodley plays Clooney's rebellious daughter in "The Descendants"
Movies are an especially fluid form of art.
A person's feelings about a particular film are based on many factors, including his or her mood when watching. On a more cynical day, I might not have enjoyed Cameron Crowe's "We Bought a Zoo" as much as I did.
Letting a film sink in over time can change things, too. For example, in a rel