AND THE TOMATO GOES TO…

Welcome to the 8th Annual Tomato Awards, where we honor the best-reviewed movies of the year. As in years past, 2006 had its share of hits, misses, and surprises.

This year, the Man of Steel returned to the big screen after a long absence on a quest — not for peace, but for a certain plucky reporter who had since moved on. Or had she? The 9/11 World Trade Center attacks were dramatized in not one but two feature films, including one directed in a surprisingly straightforward fashion by Mr. Conspiracy Theory himself, Oliver Stone. 007 Pierce Brosnan had his license to kill revoked by the powers that be; in 2006, that honor belonged to Daniel Craig. A reporter from Kazakhstan did his country proud by poking fun at the U.S. (and how about that wrestling match?), while Tom Cruise found himself on another impossible mission — doing damage control for that couch-jumping incident on Oprah and various other off-screen shenanigans. Snakes on a plane, X-Men and animated penguins all made an appearance in theaters, as well as numerous documentaries about the war in Iraq.

But which of these films were crowned the freshest by critics in 2006? Read on to see how these movies and the rest of the 2006 crop ranked in the 8th Annual Tomato Awards!


Best Wide Release

#1

Casino Royale (2006)
94%

#1
Adjusted Score: 105207%
Critics Consensus: Casino Royale disposes of the silliness and gadgetry that plagued recent James Bond outings, and Daniel Craig delivers what fans and critics have been waiting for: a caustic, haunted, intense reinvention of 007.
Synopsis: After receiving a license to kill, British Secret Service agent James Bond (Daniel Craig) heads to Madagascar, where he uncovers... [More]
Directed By: Martin Campbell

Best Limited Release

#1

The Queen (2006)
97%

#1
Adjusted Score: 105257%
Critics Consensus: Full of wit, humor, and pathos, Stephen Frears' moving portrait looks at life of the British royals during the period after Princess Diana's death.
Synopsis: Following the death of Princess Diana in an auto accident, Great Britain's Queen Elizabeth II (Helen Mirren) and Prime Minister... [More]
Directed By: Stephen Frears

Best User

#1

The Departed (2006)
91%

#1
Adjusted Score: 103069%
Critics Consensus: Featuring outstanding work from an excellent cast, The Departed is a thoroughly engrossing gangster drama with the gritty authenticity and soupy morality we come to expect from Martin Scorsese.
Synopsis: South Boston cop Billy Costigan (Leonardo DiCaprio) goes under cover to infiltrate the organization of gangland chief Frank Costello (Jack... [More]
Directed By: Martin Scorsese

Best Moldy

#1
#1
Adjusted Score: 11988%
Critics Consensus: Unable to match the suspense and titilation of its predecessor, Basic Instinct 2 boasts a plot so ludicrous and predictable it borders on "so-bad-it's-good."
Synopsis: After a crash that kills her boyfriend, Catherine Tramell (Sharon Stone) has her car searched by the police, who find... [More]
Directed By: Michael Caton-Jones

Best Action/Adventure

#1

Casino Royale (2006)
94%

#1
Adjusted Score: 105207%
Critics Consensus: Casino Royale disposes of the silliness and gadgetry that plagued recent James Bond outings, and Daniel Craig delivers what fans and critics have been waiting for: a caustic, haunted, intense reinvention of 007.
Synopsis: After receiving a license to kill, British Secret Service agent James Bond (Daniel Craig) heads to Madagascar, where he uncovers... [More]
Directed By: Martin Campbell

Best Animation

#1

Cars (2006)
75%

#1
Adjusted Score: 83303%
Critics Consensus: Cars offers visual treats that more than compensate for its somewhat thinly written story, adding up to a satisfying diversion for younger viewers.
Synopsis: While traveling to California to race The King and Chick Hicks in the Piston Cup Championship, Lightning McQueen falls out... [More]
Directed By: John Lasseter, Joe Ranft

Best Comedy

#1
Adjusted Score: 100074%
Critics Consensus: Part satire, part shockumentary, Borat gets high-fives almost all-around for being offensive in the funniest possible way. Jagshemash!
Synopsis: Outrageous situations occur when Borat, a popular reporter (Sacha Baron Cohen) from Kazakhstan, comes to the United States to film... [More]
Directed By: Larry Charles

Best Documentary

#1

Wordplay (2006)
94%

#1
Adjusted Score: 98536%
Critics Consensus: You see them hunched over with their brows furrowed, folded newspaper in hand as they attempt to complete the crossword puzzle. This may even describe you. This ingeniously edited documentary introduces viewers to some of the more dedicated fans of this solitary pastime, none more well-known the puzzle editor for the New York Times, Will Shortz. This underground world provides a surprising amount of crowd-pleasing entertainment and suspense, especially at the annual crossword tournament. Didn't know there was one, did you?
Synopsis: Filmmaker Patrick Creadon pays tribute to crossword puzzles and those who love them, and features a profile of The New... [More]
Starring:
Directed By: Patrick Creadon

Best Drama

#1

The Queen (2006)
97%

#1
Adjusted Score: 105257%
Critics Consensus: Full of wit, humor, and pathos, Stephen Frears' moving portrait looks at life of the British royals during the period after Princess Diana's death.
Synopsis: Following the death of Princess Diana in an auto accident, Great Britain's Queen Elizabeth II (Helen Mirren) and Prime Minister... [More]
Directed By: Stephen Frears

Best Foreign

#1

Pan's Labyrinth (2006)
95%

#1
Adjusted Score: 105073%
Critics Consensus: Pan's Labyrinth is Alice in Wonderland for grown-ups, with the horrors of both reality and fantasy blended together into an extraordinary, spellbinding fable.
Synopsis: In 1944 Spain young Ofelia (Ivana Baquero) and her ailing mother (Ariadna Gil) arrive at the post of her mother's... [More]
Directed By: Guillermo del Toro

Best Horror

#1

The Descent (2005)
87%

#1
Adjusted Score: 93870%
Critics Consensus: Deft direction and strong performances from its all-female cast guide The Descent, a riveting, claustrophobic horror film.
Synopsis: A year after a severe emotional trauma, Sarah (Shauna Macdonald) goes to North Carolina to spend some time exploring caves... [More]
Directed By: Neil Marshall

Best Kids/Family

#1

Lassie (2005)
93%

#1
Adjusted Score: 94873%
Critics Consensus: A beautifully-made retelling of the classic collie tale, one need not be a dog-lover to fall for Lassie.
Synopsis: Young Joe Carraclough (Jonathan Mason) and his family (Samantha Morton, John Lynch) love their faithful collie, Lassie. However, when Joe's... [More]
Directed By: Charles Sturridge

Best Romance

#1
#1
Adjusted Score: 76487%
Critics Consensus: Lovely and diffuse, Sleep isn't as immediately absorbing as Gondry's previous work, but its messy beauty is its own reward.
Synopsis: Soon after the death of his father, a distraught young man (Gael García Bernal) begins a job as a graphic... [More]
Directed By: Michel Gondry

Best Sci-Fi/Fantasy

#1

Children of Men (2006)
92%

#1
Adjusted Score: 102617%
Critics Consensus: Children of Men works on every level: as a violent chase thriller, a fantastical cautionary tale, and a sophisticated human drama about societies struggling to live.
Synopsis: When infertility threatens mankind with extinction and the last child born has perished, a disillusioned bureaucrat (Clive Owen) becomes the... [More]
Directed By: Alfonso Cuarón

Best Thriller

#1

The Departed (2006)
91%

#1
Adjusted Score: 103069%
Critics Consensus: Featuring outstanding work from an excellent cast, The Departed is a thoroughly engrossing gangster drama with the gritty authenticity and soupy morality we come to expect from Martin Scorsese.
Synopsis: South Boston cop Billy Costigan (Leonardo DiCaprio) goes under cover to infiltrate the organization of gangland chief Frank Costello (Jack... [More]
Directed By: Martin Scorsese