My immaculate Entertainment Diary told me that I'd seen 307 films theatrically during 2012.
Ignoring repertory screenings, repeat viewings and short film collections, I had 188 to choose from.
I managed to whittle that down to 27 with not too much effort, but things got emotional after that. This led me to give up on this magical '10', but I did put something together. Let's start at the top...
TOP FIVE (in no particular order)
These are the five films from my 2012 that excited me about movies all over again. They all feel like they were made with me in mind and I'm completely blind to any flaws they may have! Magic...
|THE SKIN I LIVE IN (LA PIEL QUE HABITO)
Pedro Almodóvar, Spain 2011
Thrillingly unique, rampant creativity, dark & twisted, beautiful.
Rian Johnson, US/China 2012
So well made. Fantastic story, great personality, astounding make-up, exciting.
Valérie Massadian, France 2011
NEED to re-watch! Stunning, quiet and the way the narrative is barely-visible is superb. What a gal.
Rich Moore, US 2012
Perfect, made for me to the point of near-overload. Video games, voice acting, comedic timing...
|WHAT'S IN A NAME (LE PRÉNOM)
Delaporte & de La Patellière, France/Belgium 2012
Needs a re-watch, I laughed so damn much. One genius conversation filled with old-school rapid-fire.
THE NEXT THREE (still in no particular order)
There's only one reason that these didn't make it higher; their insane entertainment value makes me feel ever-so-slightly-but-not-really guilty for liking them. I wasn't about to say that they're better films than the ones already listed, but they are SO MUCH FUN. Loved them to bits.
|THE CABIN IN THE WOODS
Drew Goddard, US 2011
Unique, fantastic twists, loved the two perspectives, plus one of the best pre-conclusions of all time.
Joss Whedon, US 2012
Top notch popcorn entertainment. Witty, rousing, great character work.
|THE RAID (REDEMPTION)(SERBUAN MAUT)
Gareth Evans, Indonesia/US 2011
14 FILMS COMPETING FOR 9th & 10th PLACE
So yeah, I honestly did attempt a top 10. But then I thought, fuck you. I don't wanna. So what I've done, is list 14 films that I can't separate, and you can choose two of them to fill those spots. Whatever you choose, they'll be right. Personally, I'd leave 'em as is...
* HEADHUNTERS (HODEJEGERNE) - Morten Tyldum, Norway / Germany 2011
Outta nowhere, fun crime caper done very RIGHT.
* KILLING THEM SOFTLY - Andrew Dominik, US 2012
Like its makers'd never seen a film before. Excitingly alien, yet a gangster film??
* PROMETHEUS - Ridley Scott, US / UK 2012
Great imagery, mood, world, creatures & adventure. Plus, auto-surgery!!
* KILLER JOE - William Friedkin, US 2011
Dark, murky sleaziness, with Matthew McConaughey, Juno Temple & THC all at their BEST!
* HUGO - Martin Scorsese, US 2011
Pretty magical, genre defying.
* POLISSE - Maïwenn, France 2011
Superb collage of scenes with no initiation into great characters!
* COMPLIANCE - Craig Zobel, US 2012
* KLOWN (KLOVN: THE MOVIE) - Mikkel Nørgaard, Denmark 2010
Hilariously awkward & nicely plotted!
* SIGHTSEERS - Ben Wheatley, UK 2012
Twisted, cool & funny.
* MARGIN CALL - J.C. Chandor, US 2011
Gripping chatter! I've never seen a talky this thrilling.
* BEASTS OF THE SOUTHERN WILD - Benh Zeitlin, US 2012
Exciting & ruggedly fresh. And that girl!
* SAFETY NOT GUARANTEED - Colin Trevorrow, US 2012
Fantastic tale, perfect performances, beautifully unhurried.
* YOUNG ADULT - Jason Reitman, US 2011
Black comedy not dressed as such, wonderfully damaged folks. And Theron!!
* CARNAGE - Roman Polanski, France / Germany / Poland / Spain 2011
I love these one-room argument films! Cast, too!
SPECIAL MENTIONS (yep, I'm still going)
And on top of ALL the above, there are a few that I couldn't even fit into THAT mess. Too old, too same-y, too faded in my memory...Whatever the case, they need mentioning. After all, how else'm I gunna fill my Top 27?
* REALITY - Matteo Garrone, Italy / France 2012
Odd score & strange descent into madness were mesmerising. But needs a re-watch.
* THE ARTIST - Michel Hazanavicius, France/Belgium/US 2011
Glorious & cute, but need to re-watch and see why all the hate..?
* BRAVE - Mark Andrews, Brenda Chapman & Steve Purcell, US 2012
Another stunning MAGICAL Pixar. Only not as UNIQUE as their others, a bit Disney princess-y.
* I WISH (奇跡) - Hirokazu Kore-eda (是枝 裕和), Japan 2011
Absolutely lovely tale, entire cast was perfect. But can't separate it from even better Kore-eda.
* And then there was one more that I adored, one that played the 13th Annual Movie Marathon.
Film 7, in fact. Everything was cranked up to 11, it was the most EVERYTHING film ever. Unfortunately, it was made in 2010, as well as being...um...shhh...Come next year and see!