Last year brought forth an amazing variety of movies. I have chosen films I saw in 2012 and reviewed for AccessReel, even though some have a 2011 production date. Release dates in Australia being what they are, sometimes we see movies here six months after their US or European debut.
I have followed Leith’s lead and arranged my films alphabetically rather than ranking them from 1 to 10, thus negating the idea of a “Top 10”. We reviewers are nothing if not badass. These are the ten films I enjoyed the most and in retrospect I would recommend AccessReelers consider seeing the ones you’ve missed.
Happy New Year AccessReelers – see more movies!
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Argo – Ben Affleck’s political thriller based on real events, was another solid picture from this actor-director.
Delicacy – Audrey Tatou’s funny and finely judged performance is just one reason to see this lovely comedy drama. Her co-star Francois Damiens is the other highlight.
The Descendants – Alexander Payne’s most accessible film with a standout performance from Clooney (not playing an A-Type in a suit). Entertainment for adults.
End of Watch – Michael Peña and Jake Gyllenhaal’s cop buddy movie set in East LA is a gritty and exciting ride directed by the writer of Training Day.
Goodbye First Love – Director Mia Hansen-Løve’s fourth feature is that most difficult nut to crack – a coming of age story that feels neither episodic nor contrived.
Iron Sky – This loopy Finnish-German-Australian co-production about Nazis living on the dark side of the moon was the best extended skit I’ve ever seen.
Martha Marcy May Marlene – This is a spooky, disturbing tale of a girl who leaves her family and is drawn into a cult. It heralds major new talent in director Sean Durkin and actor Elizabeth Olsen.
The Raid – The best Asian martial arts film since Ong Bak. Director Gareth Evasns second picture is a tense and violent experience that does not let up.
Robot and Frank – The premise is one we’re already grappling with. What if society’s elderly were cared for by electronic helper robots? Frank Langella’s central performance is excellent.
This Must Be The Place – Sean Penn’s portrayal of an ageing rock star (of the Gothic variety) is very different and yet very assured. An unashamedly quirky film that needs a bigger audience.