That the political class now finds itself relegated to accidental Alan Partridge territory along the with rest of the twits and twats that comprise English popular culture is meaningful, to say the least.
The direction is solid but not overbearing, the score subtle and light, the entire affair very nicely cushioned around Coogan and Dench's performances, and the film is all the more effective because of it.
Unlike previous years, where classics came crawling out of the celluloid woodwork with regular reckless abandon, 2008 was more calm… and considered. That's not to say that choosing 30 top titles was hard. The difficulty in placing them in some manner of rank order suggests the actual depth of quality involved.
Like the gladiators of old, 2008 resembles a battle of formidable acting gods, especially when looking over the 20 choices presented below. Indeed, if anything, choosing a winner requires more of a leap of faith than any amount of critical skill - they all were that good.
Dana's inability to parse the difference between acting and living is put to several tests in Hamlet 2, which is not only the name of his movie but also the title of the audacious play he writes for his students to perform.