Sunday, January 19, 2014

Top 10 Films of 2013

Another year of film has gone by so it's time to take a look at my top ten films of the past year. While I feel that we were spoilt in 2012 (I gave 3 films 10/10s...only 1 got 10/10 this year), we still got some excellent films so...yeah, let's look at them. Keep in mind this is limited to only films that I have actually seen (so no 12 Years a Slave or American Hustle etc.) but, without further ado, here are my top ten films of 2013.

Yes I know it's a month early but I was eager to write this.

10. The World's End
The last film in the Three Flavours Cornetto trilogy, while not quite hitting the greatness of Shaun of the Dead or Hot Fuzz, is definetly worthy of being part of the trilogy. It's the best comedy of the year with some well written jokes and slapstick as well as some of Simon Pegg and Nick Frost's best acting. The film throws some twists and turns at you which bring it to a hilarious (yet somewhat mean-spirited) conclusion to the trilogy.

See original review here: The World's End (Edgar Wright, 2013) Review

9. All Is Lost
Robert Redford goes through absolute hell to deliver Life of Pi minus the animals for a film dedicated to survival with only one actor. It creates the feeling of isolation and really makes you engaged in the perils of Robert Redford's character (yeah, he has no name). I'm sure hardcore sailors may be shouting "WHAT IS HE DOING?!" but it still offers greatness with Redford showing off his skills of being able to carry a film on his own.

8. Frozen
Winner of most surprising film of 2013, definitely. Upon its initial announcement and teaser trailer, I thought this was going to be a disaster. Not only is Frozen good, it's probably the best Disney film since the Disney Renaissance (look it up). It looks amazing, the characters are great and subvert the typical Disney stereotypes,  a surprisingly well written narrative and, my God, has a truly amazing soundtrack. 'Let It Go' is still the best song of year (Golden Globes can shove it).

7. Her
I'm not normally one for romance films but Her seems to be aimed towards single people which I can definitely relate to. The most impressive thing about Her is that Joaquin Phoenix and Scarlett Johansson share a strong chemistry without Johansson being on set! The blend between live action and voice acting is done very well and seems to nail every romantic trope on the head.

See original review here: Her (Spike Jonze, 2013) Review

6. Iron Man 3
I just heard the sound of thousands of people saying "WHAT THE HELL IS WRONG WITH YOU! IRON MAN 3 IS TERRIBLE! MANDARIN!" but...I thought Iron Man 3 was great. It's rare to find a film that conveys its humour solely through dialogue and landing every joke. Not only that but we also got some great action scenes as well as one of the best film twists in a long time (you're probably just angry because you didn't see it coming). Marvel pulls out a fresh experience with a surprisingly unique super hero film.

See original review here: Iron Man 3 (Shane Black, 2013) Review

5. Star Trek Into Darkness
I wasn't the biggest fan of J.J. Abrams' first take on the Star Trek universe (although, rewatching, it was better than I remember) but Star Trek Into Darkness is much stronger and memorable than the first. Chris Pine, Zachary Quinto and Simon Pegg provide stronger performances than before and the addition of Benedict Cumberbatch (who probably wins the award of most films done in a year) makes for a better villain than the first. I'm not going to argue with a film that has "KHAAAAAAAAN" in it.

See original review here: Star Trek Into Darkness (J.J. Abrams, 2013) Review

4. Saving Mr. Banks
2013 saw be gain an appreciation for Mary Poppins (mainly because I never saw that scene with Mr Banks near the end before) and Saving Mr. Banks came out at the perfect time. It tells the fascinating true story of the legal battle over Mary Poppins with Emma Thompson and Tom Hanks delivering delightful roles. It also has an amazing supporting cast (Paul Giamatti, Jason Schwartzman and an amazing Colin Farrell) which makes for a very strong and emotional film. 

3. The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug
Happy now? The Hobbit series finally reaches the greatness of The Lord of the Rings. The Desolation of Smaug doesn't suffer from the flaws the first film had since everything has now been established and we can continue on the quest instantly. Martin Freeman delivers a much stronger performance and I'm sure everyone knows how amazing Benedict Cumberbatch is as Smaug as well as how great the CGI looks in order to create Smaug. I have absolute faith in The Hobbit: There and Back Again

2. 12 Years a Slave
While I can't ignore the fact that this is blatant Oscar bait, I wouldn't surprise me if this sweeps the board. For me, it's only number two as there is one better but still 12 Years a Slave prevails in the very strong acting. Chiwetel Ejiofor is simply brilliant as he manages to convey the hell that Solomon goes through 12 years while working with a very strong supporting cast (Michael Fassbender is nothing short of amazing).

1. Gravity
Yeah, well what did you expect? When this film came out, it was huge and deserved every star it received. I've always wanted to see a realistic space film dealing with isolation and focusing on one person. Sandra Bullock does exceedingly well and gives one of her best performances. George Clooney also does very well as a supporting role (snubbed at the Oscars, I would say). Gravity was incredibly hyped up around its release and deserved all the hype it got.

See original review here: Gravity (Alfonso Cuaron, 2013) Review

So what didn't make the cut?

Now You See Me (Louis Leterrier, 2013)
The Hunger Games: Catching Fire (Francis Lawrence, 2013)
Man of Steel (Zack Snyder, 2013)
Alan Partridge: Alpha Papa (Declan Lowney, 2013)
Doctor Who: The Day of the Doctor (Nick Hurran, 2013) (What do you mean that doesn't count?!)
Thor: The Dark World (Alan Taylor, 2013) 
Despicable Me 2 (Pierre Coffin and Chris Renaud, 2013)
Ashens and the Quest for the Gamechild (Riyad Barmania, 2013)
The Great Gatsby (Baz Luhrmann, 2013)
This Is the End (Evan Goldberg and Seth Rogen, 2013)
The Hangover Part III (Todd Phillips, 2013)

Yes, just like last year's list, I will update the list if necessary.
This list also seemed fitting because we hit 50,000 PAGE VIEWS! 

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