GARY MURRAY’S BEST AND WORST OF 2012

GARY’S TOP TEN IN 2012

1)      Lincoln –Not Steven Spielberg’s best film but easily the best film of the year.  It is a story that is timeless and told in a timeless fashion.

2)      Zero Dark 30—the hunt for Osama Bin Laden via Moby Dick.  Jessica Chastain delivers an Oscar worthy performance as a woman obsessed with finding a wanted man. 

3)      Skyfall–James Bond has always been my favorite character and Skyfall is a brilliant re-boot of the franchise.    Daniel Craig and Javier Bardem are perfect foils in a world-wide cat and mouse game.

4)      The Avengers—The best comic book movie ever.  There was not a better time at the movies than this film.  It deserved the billions it made. 

5)      Life of Pi—a visual feast.  Director Ang Lee has made a film that must be seen in a theater to be believed.  He captured the essence of spirituality without being overly religious. 

6)      Searching for Sugarman—The best documentary of the year.  The story of ‘the death’ of Rodriguez plays more as a hopeful mystery.  Did not know one thing about this film before it screened and it captured the power of music on the masses.

7)      The Pirates!  A Band of Misfits—Best animated film of 2012 in a year of fierce competition.  This is the one I had to think about more than any other film but in the end it was only animated work I’ll own from 2012

8)      Argo—Ben Affleck shows that he can craft the kind of film that appeals to both the film snobs and the masses.  It is almost a thriller wrapped up in the insanity that it Hollywood.

9)      Les Miserables—This is an epic film-making that may not appeal to everyone but I found it captivating.  It is a movie that must be experienced in a theater.  Some have complained about all the singing, but that is what a musical is all about.

10)  Salmon Fishing in Yemen—one of the few proofs that the romantic comedy is not truly dead.  The film is quirky and funny while still being charming.  One of the forgotten gems of 2012

 

5 Best movie moments from 2012

1)  The Hulk taking on Loki in the Avengers.  I have never heard an audience react with such glee to a moment in a single movie.

2)  The introduction of Silva in Skyfall.  This simple shot was so creepy and effective that it changed the pace for the entire film.

3)  When Emma Watson riding through the tunnel in Perks of Being a Wallflower.  Been on that road, ridden in the back of a pick-up truck and know that feeling of coming out into the city.  This is a perfect moment in a not-so perfect film that simply sums up youth.

4)  The glowing whale in Life of Pi.  In a magical film this was a high-point moment that blended reality and fantasy.

5)  The left turn in The Cabin in the Woods.  It was a moment in the third act when the explanation of the why happens.  It is a macabre joy that makes one want to go to the movies.

 

Worst films of 2012

1)      Cosmopolis—can be used as a torture mechanism.  Absolutely the worst use of cast and production in 2012

2)      The Vow—single-handedly killed the romance film.  When two characters bond over the passing of gas, you know you have gone off the edge.

3)      This is 40—shows that slings of profane dialogue with meaningful moments don’t add up to a modern “It’s a Wonderful Life”.  Just a god-awful experience.

4)      Dark Shadows—was the biggest waste of talent and proof that Tim Burton is bereft of ideas.  The film didn’t know if it were a comedy or a parody or a parody of a comedy.

5)      Savages—a great performance by Selma Hayek in the dumbest and most overwrought exercise in cinematic masturbation of 2012.  A waste of a lot of money on a story that did not need to be told.

 

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