Juan’s Top 25 of 2012
10. Cloud Atlas (Tom Tykwer & The Wachowski Siblings)
I know people bashed on this relentlessly, but there are very few things I didn’t like in it (a few of the prosthetic pieces in specific). It’s ambitious as hell and that’s what I appreciate about it the most. The cutting back and forth between eras works excellently and Ben Whishaw’s character in particular is one that resonated with me on way more levels than I ever expected from this.
9. Take This Waltz (Sarah Polley)
There are few movies I can say that I sat down in to watch and immediately related to a character. As much as I hate saying I was able to relate to Michelle Williams’ character in this movie, I did. She’s frustrating, but she’s real, as is almost everything about this movie. The scenes set to Video Killed The Radio Star alone make the film everything it is.
8. Jeff, Who Lives at Home (Jay & Mark Duplass)
I really love Jason Segel. Most people who know me know I have the biggest crush in the world on him. Maybe that’s part of why I loved Jeff so much, but I thought it was just such a nice little mixing of character stories and a whole bunch of fun. Plus, it actually had a storyline featuring a non-heterosexual character that was pretty interesting and that sadly doesn’t happen as often as it should.
7. Girl Walk // All Day (Jacob Krupnick)
I was considering writing nothing but lyrics from any one of Girl Talk’s songs here, but instead I’m just going to say that this movie is pure happiness and fun. It’s just a girl dancing through New York and a huge part of me wishes I could do exactly what she did.
6. Argo (Ben Affleck)
Go ahead. Keep complaining about it now that it won Best Picture, but I still think it’s one of the most entertaining flicks of the year. Even though you know what’s coming thanks to history, it’s still tense! Sure, it’s a crowd pleaser, but does that make it bad? Far from it.
5. The Master (Paul Thomas Anderson)
Let’s be real. This is one of the most amazing films of the year. Whether or not you liked the narrative or study of characters, you HAVE to acknowledge that this is one of the best acted films of the year. Phoenix and Hoffman are powerhouses and even Adams in her limited role gives everything to the movie. Paul Thomas Anderson is a beast of a director and the beauty he brings here with the characters, the music, the camera, everything, is nothing short of breathtaking.
4. Killer Joe (William Friedkin)
Friedkin and Tracy Letts are a match made in heaven. Bug was already wonderful enough, but Killer Joe blew me the fuck away. It’s gritty, it’s seedy, it’s uncomfortable, and it’s entertaining as hell. McConaughey gives one hell of a performance and so do the others in the cast, and it’s easily one of the best stage to screen transitions around.
3. Django Unchained (Quentin Tarantino)
I’ve never been disappointed by a Tarantino film. Not even Death Proof, which everyone sort of bashes on. With every watch of Django Unchained, I ended up loving the film even more. People have screamed all sorts of things about it, but I love it. I just do. And the next person to complain at me about it is going to get blood wiped on their face DiCaprio style.
2. Moonrise Kingdom (Wes Anderson)
Pure childhood. I could talk about this movie for hours and how it genuinely felt like a film that embodied every little bit of childhood possible. It’s everything about Wes Anderson I love stuffed into one big beautiful movie and I think you’ve got to have a pretty shitty view on life to not enjoy it.
1. The Cabin in the Woods (Drew Goddard)
Not only did Joss Whedon and Drew Goddard write the best horror film of the twenty-first century so far, they created what could likely be considered the greatest love letter AND criticism to the genre ever. Everything about this movie is just plain wonderful. It’s funny, scary, entertaining, an absolutely wild ride that everyone should embark on, and without a doubt the best feature debut of the year. I just genuinely loved everything about it and even after four viewings, I still can’t help but love it as much as the first time.