The highly entertaining Kung Fu Hustle is movie of the year. The runner-up, the surreal The Triplets of Belleville, portrays rich human emotion (boredom and pain in this case), perhaps reaching levels impossible with live action.

best movie of the year - City of God

Top-notch film-making skill deserving of a masterpiece; same goes for camerawork and editing. All this makes for an exhilarating ride through the unbelievably violent streets of Mexico City's slums. It's the kind of movie which reminds me of a Pulp Fiction while remaining very different, except for a seeming fact that both directors relish in the violence.

performance of the year

Li'l Zé, the incredibly vicious villain in City of God. The runner-up is Morgan Freeman's performance (his best so far) of a loser and old-time boxer in Million Dollar Baby which ties with Kevin Spacey's political activist in a superior The Life of David Gale. A lesser, but favorite, performance of mine is that of Laurence Fishburne in Mystic River, proving that he shouldn't be in bad money vehicles like the two sequels of The Matrix.

spectacle of the year - The Island

Great visuals and an intriguing story-line help make this the year's greatest spectacle. The runner-up happens to be King Kong for nobody has captured them ritualistic humans so perfectly as Peter Jackson did here nor did anyone ever commit such superb visual effects to screen. That's some explosive shit, and I only wish the plausibility of the story was given some thought. An honorable mention under this category is The House of Flying Daggers for, even if didn't like the love triangle non-sense, I haven't seen film battles quite captured like this before. Harks back to a greater Hero which shared the same director, Zhang Yimou. Another honorable mention goes to The Incredibles which happened to be the most impressive of all 3D animated films so far, and also blessed with a wonderful and fresh script.