Thursday, December 27, 2012

2012: The Year in Film

This list is necessarily incomplete. The two biggest lacunae in my 2012 viewing are Zero Dark Thirty, which is currently only playing NY and LA, and Django Unchained, which I couldn't get to on Christmas Day and had to sit out as we were pummeled with snow yesterday, but plenty of other films eluded my grasp, among them Crazy Horse, Elena, Dark Horse, Alamayer's Folly, Lawless, Wuthering Heights, Cloud Atlas, The Loneliest Planet, Wreck-It Ralph, Skyfall, Anna Karenina, Silver Linings Playbook, and Not Fade Away.

In assembling this list, slots one through eight filled themselves. I'm pretty confident in my choice for number nine as well, but the ten spot could have easily been filled by four or five different films. It's notable that in 2012, the year they stopped making 35mm film, of the top four films of the year two feature 16mm stock, in a sort of rebellion against the shift towards digital, and two are very much about the loss of meaning as we move from tangible objects to ones and zeros in both the arts (Holy Motors) and the financial sector (Cosmopolis).

1. Tabu (Miguel Gomes)
2. Holy Motors (Leos Carax)
3. Moonrise Kingdom (Wes Anderson)
4. Cosmopolis (David Cronenberg)
5. This is Not a Film (Jafar Panahi & Mojtaba Mirtahmasb)
6. The Turin Horse (Béla Tarr & Ágnes Hranitzky)
7. The Kid With a Bike (Jean-Pierre & Luc Dardenne)
8. The Master (Paul Thomas Anderson)
9. Damsels in Distress (Whit Stillman)
10. Oslo, August 31st (Joachim Trier)

Honorable Mention: The Deep Blue Sea, The Cabin in the Woods, A Simple Life, Looper, Once Upon a Time in Anatolia, The Avengers, The Matthew McConaughey in a Cowboy Hat Trilogy (Bernie, Magic Mike, Killer Joe), Goodbye First Love, The Day He Arrives, Lincoln, Girl Walk // All Day

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