Thursday, January 3, 2013

Top Movies of 2012

These are the movies that I saw in 2012 that made me really enjoy being a cinema lover. I can't say these movies are for everyone, I can't say I have seen every movie in 2012 (I did see 55 movies released in 2012), but what I can say is that these movies really stuck with me and are movies that I am sure to watch again and again. I hope in 5 or so years  I can look back at this list and say I still enjoy these movies.

I thought this year was packed with so many well done movie that I would expand my usual list of 10 to 20. All the movies on my list received better then a B grade by me.

The one's that almost made the cut..

20. Wreck-It Ralph - This was my favorite animated film I saw this year. I grew up playing video games and I was happy to see that this movie threw in many of my favorite video game characters. The story has a nice message and voice acting is amazing. I saw this twice.

19. 21 Jump Street - One of the best comedies in 2012, 21 Jump Street shines because Jonah Hill and Channing Tatum play so well off one another. The movie has some gut busting moments but is also smart and self aware.

18. The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey - Having only seen this once I would really love to go back and take it all in again. I cannot imagine the pressure on this film to live up the LOTR movies. This is a smaller story but still has great acting and looks amazing. Looking forward to seeing the rest of the story.

17. Ruby Sparks - Perhaps the least well known movie on this list. Ruby Sparks does a great job of showing the highs and lows of an adult relationship. The premise is great and the movie has many laughs.

16. Silver Linings Playbook - The movie has just same amazing performances. Cooper and Lawernce are really top notch. I found myself laughing a lot but the movie also looks at the serious side of mental illness. I also give it points for all the football elements.

15. End of Watch - Best cop movie I have seen in a long long time. Gyllenhaal and Pena shine as partners showing what it is like working as a cop. This movie gets really tense and will have you on the edge of your seat. The best part of the film is the interaction between the two cops.

14. The Raid: Redemption - This is some non stop action packed fun! If you appreciate some mind blowing action you should see this movie. It had me just jaw dropped with what goes on in this movie. Probably the best action movie this year.

13. Cloud Atlas - This movie just struck me because of all the care given to each and every scene. I cannot say that everyone will like it as much as me. The movie has some amazing performances and if you are open minded you will enjoy what it has to offer.

12. Safety Not Guaranteed - I feel this smaller indie movie held its own with being of the best movies of the year. Mark Duplass and Aubrey Plaza shine and the story will keep you wondering how the ending will play out. This is a fun movie that also shows a lot of imagination.

11. Lincoln - Hands down filled with some of the best individual performances I have seen in all of 2012. Daniel Day Lewis is Lincoln, he embodies every element of our 16th president. Sally Field is amazing in her small time on the screen and Tommy Lee Jones shines as the grumpy senator. The movie just look amazing, they really paid attention to every detail. And to top it off it was directed by Steven Spielberg.

My Top Ten Releases in 2012:

 10. Seven Psychopaths - Writer/Director Martin McDonagh strikes again with the cleverly written Seven Psychopaths. McDonagh wrote and directed In Bruges in 2008 and comes back with another killer flick. Sam Rockwell and Christopher Walken steal just about any scene they appear in. The movie is a script writers dream. The cast in amazing the stories are amazing. I just wish I could have seen this one a few more times.

9. Looper - Rian Johnson continues to impress, he did the well done movie Brick and now is back with a very cool and interesting look at the time travel/sci-fi genre. I really enjoyed just about every aspect of Looper. It has great acting by Joesph Gordon Levitt and Bruce Willis is good as well. The movie will keep you wondering how it will all end.

 8. Beasts of the Southern Wild - This is a poetic and heart breaking look at bayou community on the verge of going underwater. The movies young actress gives perhaps on of the finest child performance in movie history. Quvenzhane Wallis as Hush Puppy is just amazing and soulful  I never would have thought a movie like this would be on my list, but when you see greatness you recognize it.

7. The Dark Knight Rises - Probably my most anticipated movie in all of 2012 was this one, I was eager to see how mastermind Christopher Nolan would end the fantastic trilogy. I am happy to say that this movie was well done and greatly satisfied me for the end of his movies. While seeing this movie I cold literally feel my heart beating not knowing what would happen. Would they kill off Batman? The ending nearly left me in tears, this is how you do a superhero movie in the modern day. Kudos to Mr.Nolan for his trilogy of amazing films.

6. Django Unchained - Thank you Quentin Tarantino for making such amazingly written and directed movies. In many years I will be telling my children (when they are old enough) that I saw these movies in a theater. Django just has the slick and smart dialogue you would expect from Tarantino. Christoph Waltz, Leonardo DiCaprio, Jamie Foxx, and Samuel L. Jackson all deserve some love come awards season and of course the man behind the words Tarantino, the mastermind just continues to amaze in everything he does. I just wish I could have seen this a few hundred more times.

5. The Avengers - Joss Whedon, what an amazing 2012 you had! I and all the kids who grew up reading comics want to thank you for finally doing the movie that no one thought would ever happen. You not only did that but you made me so good! The banter between heroes, the villain  and of course the Hulk! This is easily a movie I will watch again and again just because the pure unadulterated fun of it. I saw it the day in came out and then a day later, yes it is that kind of fun. Marvel did a marvelous (ha) job of setting this movie up ever since Iron Man. Once again thank you for just nailing this movie and making me feel like a kid again.

4. Argo - Argo is somewhat based on true event that happened in 1980 when six Americans were trapped in Iran. I love movies about movies and this movie is about pretending to be a fake science fiction movie to help get these people out of danger. I am a huge Ben Affleck director. I have loved every movie he has directed to this point and Argo continues his roll. This movie looks so much like it was filmed in 1980. The look of everything is vintage, down to clothes and cars. Affleck is smart in taking the sort of timid role in the film, the really great acting comes from the duo of John Goodman and Alan Arkin. Affleck once again hits it out of the park.

3. Skyfall - I have never been a huge fan of the Bond films, this has to do with me not seeing them all and growing up during the Pierce Brosnan years. But that all changed when I saw the pure brilliance to Skyfall. I was totally taken in by the movie: the acting, the direction, the look of everything. The movie is a different and new take on Bond.  While I enjoy the newness of it all, I also really like that they reference the past a lot, showing us that Bond is new but also doesn't forget his roots. A new Q shows up but as I have said before a great villain makes for a great movie. Javier Bardem shines as the villain Silva and makes you feel that he has power and can threaten Bond and especially M (Judi Dench). Some say this is not the typical Bond but this is a new and improved Bond in my eyes. I would love to see more movies like this in franchise.

2. Moonrise Kingdom - The brillance of Wes Anderson is on full display in this coming of age comedy with an all star cast. The cast is amazing but no more so then the two main children played by Jared Gilman and Kara Hayward. The couple runs away together to be free and in love and the rest of the island they inhabit seems to be looking for them. This is probably the most visually stunning movie I saw in 2012. I love the style and detail to attention Anderson fills up every frame of the movie. He is a master at making his movies look exactly how he wants, and no other director currently has his style or look. The film has a lot of heart and Bruce Willis gives a good performance, to go along with Looper, Willis was on a roll in 2012. When the credits rolled on Moonrise I was sad because I didn't want this movie to end, I just wanted it keep going for a long time.

1. The Cain in the Woods - And to think this movie was delayed for a long while. Not a tough choice as my #1 movie but when I really thought about what movie had the biggest impact on my viewing experience it was this one. Joss Whedon who was a cult favorite to many (Buffy and Firefly) became the nerd god when he penned this movie and also directed The Avengers, and he totally earned it. This movie is made for people like me, people who watch those old 80's horror flicks but this movie has something to say about the audience watching and how they impact the movies they so love. This movie was advertised in a way that you have really no idea what is in store for you when you go and see it. I think that is partly while I enjoyed it  so much. I have seen so many movies that it feels like I can predict the entire movie from the preview, Cabin not only threw me for one loop the motherfucker did it twice. There is absolutely no way to predict what will happen in this movie and for that it was refreshing and it earns my #1 movie of 2012.


le0pard13 said...

Excellent list!

Wesley said...

Great list - glad I got to see a lot of these too. I still really want to see Looper and Seven Psychopaths though. I would probably rank End of Watch higher but other than that my list wouldn't be too different.

I'm looking forward to watching the Golden Globes and Oscars, that's for sure.

Griff said...

Nice list, I missed a couple of these that I still need to see. I can't believe I still haven't caught Seven Psychopaths. That was on my must see list.

Mummbles said...

I feel Seven Psychopaths would be the movie less likely to be on anyone else's top movies but I love the writer/director and you cannot beat Walken and Rockwell in it!

Emily Devine said...

Great list, Sean! The only one on your top 10 I didn't see was Cabin in the Woods...I loved Seven Psychopaths though. Great picks!

Colonel Mortimer said...

Cool list, good combination of large and smaller quirkier films, the only top 10 one I still haven't seen is Beasts of the Southern Wild, but plan to catch that on Blu Ray.

Anonymous said...

Lincoln seemed a little low - but good heartfelt list. You honor your father by putting CABIN IN THE WOODS number 1 over many other films that will be more highly decorated. (this is your uncle btw)

Wifey McGee said...

so many of those that I still want to see!!! since you like them so much you will probably wanna see them once they come out, right? ;)

MrJeffery said...

i love your top 10! i feel like "seven psychopaths" was overlooked.