Thursday, December 27, 2012

BEST OF 2012 Part #1

The Best movies of 2012 By Andy Copp

I decided this year to go all out and pick a top twenty. This was one of those weird years when there was more than enough good to great films to go around. Theatrical releases, DVD's and foreign imports all were very good to us this year.

So I will present this list in two parts starting at number twenty to eleven, then part two the rest of them.

  1. 20) ROCK OF AGES – Yeah I said it. The 80's hair metal movie musical that I am sure made the worst list of most people this year is something I enjoyed thoroughly. I've seen it twice now and I honestly don't get the hatred for this. What is wrong with a fun movie that sets out to make you feel good? Maybe it is because I grew up on the era this movie depicts, or that this music was the background to my teen years, but this one had me smiling for the whole two hour plus running time.

  1. 19) THE THEATER BIZARRE – Finally a horror anthology that is as good as some of the classic 70's and 80's ones. Granted, with five segments and different directors some will be better than others, but all of them had some value. So for the record, Richard Stanley's first segment is the weakest, with some fun imagery, Buddy Giovanazzo's “I LOVE YOU” is one of the best on display with his typical black humor and very grim outlook, Tom Savini's is not bad, but lacks the substantial punch of the others, Douglas Buck's "THE ACCIDENT" is simply incredible. A haunting, nuanced work of art that could stand on its own outside of the film. Karim Husain's VISION STAINS contains some of the movie's most startling imagery and a very original story to boot. Though the constant narration wears thin after while. And finally David Gregory's amazing SWEETS is funny, gross, disturbing, outrageous and the perfect antidote to the extremely serious nature of most of the movie. Jeremy Kastin's wrap around stuff falls completely flat and if it didn't feature Udo Kier it would be a waste of time.

    18) GOD BLESS AMERICA Bobcat Goldthwait's acerbic black comedy about the pop culture landscape that passes for the American dream is one of the most savage comedies in ages. With all the gun violence this past year I would not be shocked if this one quietly vanishes though.

  1. 17) THE AMAZING SPIDERMAN – The first comic book movie on my list was rather poorly received but I honestly am not sure why. I loved the fact that it put a human face on being a superhero, making Peter Parker a true awkward teen who we take a lot of time to actually get to know. I liked the Lizard as a villain, I LOVED Emma Stone as the girl he falls for. The action was all well done as was the 3D.

    16) SKYFALL – The latest James Bond film is simply one of the best of the entire series. I am a big fan of Daniel Craig in the role and how he has humanized Bond. This one takes it further giving us insight into his parents and what made him the cold heart killer he is. Also Javier Bardem as the villain is as good as it gets.

  1. SAFEJason Stathem's latest action fest is actually one of the darkest and best street level thrillers in many year. Taking it's ques from seventies and eighties exploitation action films like NIGHT OF THE JUGGLER or PRIME CUT this is a real surprise. Stathem is always extremely likable, but this time he has a good script and fantastic direction from Boaz Yankin (who directed maybe the best and most underrated teen comedy of the 80's THE LAST AMERICAN VIRGIN).

     14) THE BUNNY GAME Adam Rehmier smashes all the conventions of the horror genre to deliver this pitch black, deeply personal vision of hopelessness and depravity. The film stands out for many things, the cold B/W cinematography, the intricate and highly unsettling sound design and score, the flawless and fearless acting of the leads, and how the violence being perpetrated on screen is not special effects of acting. Everyone suffered to put this one on screen and it shows.

  1. 13) MOONRISE KINGDOMWes Anderson's latest film is a beautiful and wondrous vision of being a child and discovering love for the first time. Production wise it is flawless as his films usually are. But this one has so much heart and soul to it, that it successfully makes you feel like you are a kid again.

  1. 12) THE DARK NIGHT RISESChristopher Nolan finishes off his BATMAN trilogy with, in my opinion, the strongest film of the series. Yes it is VERY long, but it is never boring. Tom Hardy's Bane is the best villain to face off against Batman because he actually has the manpower and brawn to take him. But best of all is how it is not really about Batman but the way a broken man can find himself again when pushed by extraordinary circumstances. This one has the most meat on its bones of the three films (all of which to be fair are quite good).

  1. 11) DEGENERATE ART: THE ART AND CULTURE OF BLOWN GLASS – This was a Netflix find for me and I ended up watching it twice in two days. An amazing journey into a world I had no idea about, the artistry behind creating glass pipes aka bongs. There is a whole industry here I knew nothing about and this film gets under every piece of broken glass to tell the story.

    More to come...
    © Andy Copp