2012 was a good year for cinema. I live near a movie theater and saw all nine films up for Best Picture at the Academy Awards. Here is my Top 10 list, as well as favorite performances. You can debate me, if you'd like!
1. Les Miserables Yes, it was too long, and the new song was bad, and Crowe can't sing (he still makes a perfect cop). But I loved the movie. Such emotion. This is a film to see on the big screen with an audience. It won't be the same on your TV.
2. Zero Dark Thirty Yes, it was too long, and I didn't need to see the torture scenes. But the second half of the film is astounding. Woman catches the ultimate bad guy.
3. Lincoln Yes, it was too long (see the pattern?), and the politics were boring. But Day-Lewis is mesmerizing. The quiet parts of the film were my favorites. I would have ended it when Lincoln was walking down the hall. We all know what happens next; the director didn't have to show it.
4. Moonrise Kingdom This is such a quirky, fun film. I lost myself in that world.
5. Argo This will probably win, because it has the fewest flaws and won't upset people. But it fell slightly flat for me.
6. Django Unchained A total blood spurting sport. I hid my eyes several times. But what a ride.
7. Life of Pi Ang Lee is my favorite director. His films are paced and styled so well. They have soul. Nobody else could have made this lovely movie.
8. Silver Linings Playbook I enjoyed this and laughed often, but felt slightly uncomfortable throughout. Bradley Cooper does nothing for me.
9. Beasts of the Southern Wild Imaginative and fun. The young actress is extraordinary.
10. The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey Loved the trolls. Everyone else panned this film, but I was entertained.
11. Amour Best performances of the year, but waaaaaaaaay too depressing.
12. The Sessions Well done, but I didn't need to see that.
13. Skyfall Daniel Craig, Daniel Craig, Daniel Craig. Nice.
14. Anna Karenina Keira Knightley is so beautiful and stylish. Loved the costumes. But this was no Dr. Zhivago.
15. Snow White and the Huntsman The bad witch was very bad and very good.
Daniel Day-Lewis, Lincoln
Emmanuelle Riva, Amour
Christoph Waltz, Django
Jacki Weaver, Silver Linings Playbook
Director: Ang Lee
Did not see, but heard good things: