Top Ten Movies of 2012
When I looked back at all the movies released in 2012, I was surprised at how many I’d actually seen. After perusing the list I compiled, it dawned upon me that 2012 offered an abundance of top-caliber films, especially in comparison to years of yore. I can’t remember looking forward to so many movies in the previous 21 years of my life. Of course, there were still a few flicks that made me regret spending my 12 dollars, which, on the other hand, made me glad I didn’t waste my precious scene points. The two hours I spent watching Snow White and the Huntsmen would have been better spent re-alphabetizing my book shelf. The Campaign was an abysmal waste of time and The Amazing Spiderman was just The Mediocre Spiderman. However, it’s not the flops I’m worried about today. It’s the cinematic adventures that immersed me into their universes with their wonderfully spun tales and dashing unprecedented action. Here is my top ten movies of 2012
10. The Avengers
Not the cleanest of movies, and it barely edged its’ way in here, but it was just fun enough to round out the top ten. 143 minutes of action on a scale rarely seen before, and equally divided among a star-studded cast. Joss Whedon did a great job making sure the Avengers didn’t turn into a giant cluster-you-know-what like so many others would have.
9. Life of Pi
I never read the book, and I was kind of dragged along, but boy do I not regret the dragging. The middle hour was one of the mot breathtaking sequences of visuals I have ever witnessed. The animals were depicted perfectly, and the story was entertaining. Not quite as gripping as Cast Away, but undoubtedly more visually entertaining.
8. Django Unchained
If Leonardo Dicaprio is in your movie, it’s safe to say it will make my top ten. If Quentin Tarantino directed it, ditto. As usual, I was blown away by Dicaprio. His ability to command the screen, even after Christopher Waltz’ masterful performance, is inimitable. Unchained is also the first movie in which I happened to enjoy Jamie Foxx. I knew what to expect heading into this movie, and I got exactly what I wanted: insanely unrealistic deaths, great storytelling and memorable monologues.
A lot of science fiction fans disliked this Alien prequel, but I personally enjoyed every minute of it. The style of the movie, the dynamic of the crew on board, the epidemic reminiscent of the 1979 precursor and the mythology added to the universe. Not a lot was explained, but let’s cross our fingers and hope this was the first of a new trilogy.
Nobody wants to give Ben Affleck a chance because of a couple blunders he made in the early 2000’s, but writing, directing and starring in Argo was the perfect “in-your-face” to his critics. Argo was the most well-paced movie of the year, displaying an immaculate balance of stress and relief. At no point did I doubt the legitimacy of this movie.
This was my second most anticipated movie of the year, and I was definitely not disappointed. After the roadkill that was Quantum of Solace, and seeing the breathtaking trailer, you could tell Skyfall was going to be every bit as good as Daniel Craig’s first venture in the Bond series. Surprisingly, the cinematography was probably the best part, followed by the riveting action scenes performed so well by Craig. Also, Javier Bardem. That is all.
4. Dark Knight Rises
You knew it was coming. No list is complete if that year’s Nolan film doesn’t make the top five. The Dark Knight rises did what everybody expected; it wrapped up the almost flawless trilogy without disappointment. Bruce Wayne’s rise from bottom to top was executed with panache. Tom Hardy’s performance rivaled that of Heath Ledger’s and Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Anne Hathaway provided excellent secondary characters. Tremendous movie through and through
3. The Hobbit
This was my most anticipated movie of 2012. After reading the Hobbit for the first time four months ago, and finishing the extended Lord of the Rings trilogy for the first time as well, (I know right? Where the hell was I?) I knew I was in for three-hours of pure excellence. Critics criticized Peter Jackson for his back story and focus on the dwarves, but they forget The Hobbit is entirely about the dwarves. The book was actualized in every way I dreamed of. No complaints here.
2. The Raid
The Raid is this year’s dark horse. It was released in Indonesia in 2011 but made its’ Canadian debut in April of this year. I had no idea what to expect going into the film. The raid featured 121 minutes of flawless unadulterated action that would even blow the mind of Expendables creator Sylvester Stallone. Iko Uwais was Bruce Lee on steroids, if you can imagine that, and the petite Yayan Ruhian was surprisingly the most formidable enemy of 2012. Basically if you have male genitalia you will like The Raid.
1. Seven Psychopaths
Wow. Where do I even start? Martin McDonagh and Colin Ferrell team up again after 2008’s In Bruges, another magnificent movie. Seven Psychopaths featured everything; a creative story, good execution, innovative action and killing, skillful acting and best of all, it provoked out of me a maniacal laughter. This is what seeing a movie in theater is all about. It may not be the best movie altogether on the list, but it was the most fun I had at the movies all year. It’s all about the experience, and Seven Psychopaths was the summation of everything a good experience needs. What was the best part? The cameo in the first five minutes featuring Boardwalk Empire’s Michael Pitt and Michael Stuhlbarg. Beautiful.
There you have it. What do you think? Give me your top ten in the comments or even just your top five. But just a couple more things first. After making this list, it occurred to me that most of these movies were pretty damn long. They averaged 136.7 hours. That’s incredible! These ten fantastic movies averaged over two hours. It makes me happy to see directors don’t have to squish so much content into a 90 minute frame anymore.
Also, honourable mentions go to Looper, Wreck-it Ralph and Cabin in the Woods. To me, Looper was a tie for tenth place. I have an infatuation with animation meaning Wreck-it Ralph was a shoe-in. And lastly, Cabin in the Woods was a great allegorical parody of modern horror movies and the things fans demand to see. Great movie when you look past the surface.
Can’t wait for 2013! Looks like a good year for science fiction. Anddddd cut.