|Accepting the award for best still of the year is Holy Motors, because the still from Killer Joe was NSFW.|
The Highest Highs and the Lowest Lows Award - TO ROME WITH LOVE
The diagetic opera staged around a man who can only sing while showering was the highlight of my year, and Roberto Benigni spontaneously becoming famous for no reason isn't too far behind. Unfortunately, To Rome with Love also included an absolutely painful segment, starring Jesse Eisenberg and Ellen Page, that ruined what could have been another of Woody Allen's recent greats.
The Best Movie That No One Thought Would Be Good Award - DREDD
If you didn't see Dredd, you're probably writing me off as a lunatic right now, but as far as action movies go, Dredd ranks with the best of the year. There isn't much plot but, as we saw with the Sylvester Stallone version, plot can sometimes be a bad thing. 2012's Dredd consists almost entirely of Judge Dredd and Psychic Dredd blowing up a building run by a drug gang. And since Skyfall was garbage, you might as well watch Dredd. Or The Raid, which is the same movie but better.
The Supporting Actor of the Year Award - MATTHEW MCCONAUGHEY
I'm not kidding when I say that Matthew McConaughey's role in Magic Mike should have gotten him nominated for Best Supporting Actor. He wouldn't be my favorite to win, but yo, McConaughey owned in that movie. Add that to his performance in Killer Joe, and I'm starting to think that I may have been able to sit through How to Lose a Guy in Ten Days if he had fed Kate Hudson some KFC. I haven't liked McConaughey this much since Tiptoes, and that's purely for the sheer strangeness of Gary Oldman playing a dwarf.
And here is your top ten:
10. Life of Pi
9. Chicken With Plums
8. Django Unchained
Here is my original review of Django Unchained if you want more thorough sarcasm. There's really not much to say about Django. Christoph Waltz kills it in the first act, Leonardo DiCaprio is fantastic, and Jamie Foxx is underwhelming when left to his own devices. It's really funny, it's too long, and has very little to offer other than a raucous good time at the cinema. It's the second of three Best Picture nominees on this list, and the least likely to win. We all know Argo has it locked up anyway, with an outside chance that Zero Dark Thirty wins based on CIA intervention and threats of torture.
7. The Cabin in the Woods
6. Silver Linings Playbook
5. The Perks of Being a Wallflower
Here is my original review in case you need to hear some more about teen angst. I liked this quite a bit, but I feel a little bad about it.
4. 21 Jump Street
3. Cloud Atlas
|Tom Hanks as a literary gangster is not the strangest role in this movie.|
2. The Grey
1. Take This Waltz
Can you please find a man that you are satisfied with? We all know you never loved Dawson. Ryan Gosling? Not good enough. Seth Rogen? Well, I guess I understand that last one. But seriously, Michelle. Seth Rogen was pretty adorable in this movie. He made you a whole lot of chicken, put in the effort to produce long-term jokes, offered to carve out your eyes with a melon peeler... he's obviously adorable. But no, we meet one cute boy at a public humiliation and we're all antsy in our pantsy. Shame on you, Michelle. Your dissatisfaction with all things male does tend to produce good films, so I can forgive you. Blue Valentine was the best film of 2010 (no matter what my list said back then), and while Take This Waltz is nowhere near Blue Valentine in terms of quality, it's number one for 2012. For now. The order of my lists change as often as the boy on your arm.
Take This Waltz is the story of Michelle Williams slowly falling in love with her neighbor. She's become dissatisfied with her life, bored with her husband, and is seeking excitement. Thankfully, it's not the traditional tale of infidelity–the cheating is emotional not physical–which saves it from triteness. The interactions between Michelle and her rickshaw pulling (no seriously, that's his profession) neighbor are usually engaging, both through impressive dialogue and silent expression. The soundtrack and cinematography step in to shape the silent moments, and some of the best moments in the film are articulated during our actors' silence.
I wouldn't say with certain confidence that Take This Waltz is the best film of the year, but I always like me an honest relationship drama. Since we usually only get one of those a year, and they're not always that good, Take This Waltz tops this list.
Moonrise Kingdom - Wes Anderson makes the same movie again, but it's about little kids and it's still funny although I still wish that he would branch out. He's the Tim Burton of films I actually like.
Pitch Perfect - As if Step Up, Bring it On, and Glee had a baby with all of the good genes, this one was surprisingly fun.
Looper - Joseph Gordon Levitt is Bruce Willis, and there's a lot of stuff that could have been better, but it was still good.
Lincoln - This film would have made my Top 10 if Sally Field was not in it.
Chronicle - Everyone likes to see what teenagers would actually do if they got super powers.
Damsels in Distress - This was one of the front runners in the twenty-way tie for tenth. It's a very funny look at some very interesting young ladies.
Sound of My Voice - Another strong film from Brit Marling. This time she shows up as a cult leader who may or may not be from the future.
Rust and Bone - A strange blend of romance and MMA, plus Marion Cotillard has no legs.
The Raid - The Asian version of Dredd is actually better and features more kung fu.
Bernie - A pseudo-documentary about Jack Black shacking up with an old lady. And then he kills her. Based on a true story, but not a real documentary.
The Sessions - John Hawkes hangs out in an iron lung and sleeps with Helen Hunt. Helen Hunt falls for him for some strange reason.
Argo - Oscar bait. It was good filmmaking but uninspiring.
Your Sister's Sister - Mark Duplass number one. Good.
Jeff, Who Lives at Home - Mark Duplass number two. Good.
Safety Not Guaranteed - Mark Duplass number three. Good.
Magic Mike - Surprisingly hilarious, but descends into your standard drugs are bad narrative.
Killer Joe - McConaughey almost made his way into the top ten. I like the way he works his drumstick.
The Avengers - It was as good as it possibly could have been: an entertaining popcorn romp.
The Thieves - The Asian Ocean's Eleven.
Wreck it Ralph - Cute. But I would have preferred smart.
Man with the Iron Fists - Kind of awful, but in the best way. This is what happens when RZA directs.
V/H/S - A horror movie I actually liked. Some segments were much better than others.
The Amazing Spiderman - It was a completely unnecessary movie to make, but it was at least better than the Toby McGuire one.
Video Game High School - This is on Netflix and its kind of funny in a Disney Channel sort of way.
Anna Karenina - I love the form of this film, just not the content.
Skyfall - Standard Bond. At least Casino Royale happened once.
Holy Motors - Mesmerizing, but not cohesive enough to remain relevant in my mind.
Oslo, August 31 - Drugs are bad.
God Bless America - I kind of loved this movie because a fat guy and a little girl kill people for being stupid.
Beasts of the Southern Wild - Indie Bait of the Southern Wild.
Amour - Watching old people deteriorate is not fun. It's the filmic representation of an emotion that is not that complex.
The Vow - C-Tates still made me smile.
The Hobbit - The best Lord of the Rings movie. Actually belongs in the good column, but I'm too tired to move it.
Seven Psychopaths - Funny but forgettable.
Celeste and Jesse Forever - Cry about it a little more.
The Dark Knight Rises - An embarrassment to the other two.
This is 40 - Judd Apatow keeps making movies that I want to like. He needs a new editor.
The Master - Another film with great form, but weak content.
The Impossible - Better than I thought. But that doesn't excuse it for being so contrived.
Once Upon a Time in Anatolia - Well made, but couldn't get a hold on me.
Alps - Dogtooth was so good, but this was so dull.
Ruby Sparks - It got a little maniacal at the end, which I always like to see from Paul Dano.
Seeking a Friend for the End of the World - Good idea. Mediocre execution.
Cosmopolis - Had some really great lines, but wasn't very good.
Les Miserables - It's better than my original review let on. But it was still a disappointment.
Ted - Had a few laughs, but they didn't last.
Prometheus - Seriously, don't run in a straight line.
The Five-Year Engagement - Not funny and a narrative mess.
Giant Mechanical Man - Weird, and kind of entertaining in a completely forgettable way.
The Deep Blue Sea - A period piece about infidelity. Ain't nobody got time for that.
Wanderlust - An embarrassment.
Keep the Lights On - An embarrassment to the gay community.
The Hunger Games - Filmed by an eight year old with turrettes.
Dark Horse - Fat Horse.
The Comedy - The name is ironic.
I know I'm missing some that I saw, but that will give you an idea at least.