Top Ten Movies of 2012

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#9
Rust and Bone

Matthias Schoenaerts and Marion Cotillard in Rust and Bone
Matthias Schoenaerts and Marion Cotillard in Rust and Bone
Photo: Sony Pictures Classics

In 2009, I placed Jacques Audiard‘s A Prophet #1 on my Bullhead last year was one of the year’s absolute best performances, it made my anticipation for this film sky-rocket.

I saw Rust and Bone in Cannes back in May and the plot is extensive enough that I don’t have enough space in this small blurb, but to quote my review I wrote: “There’s power, pain, love, despair and confusion within these characters and each trait serves as a tie that binds, bringing everything together.”

Only recently did it hit limited theaters in the United States and it will surely expand over the course of the beginning of the year, but likely many of you will have to find this on DVD and Blu-ray and when you get the chance, certainly give it a watch.

#8
The Perks of Being a Wallflower

Logan Lerman and Emma Watson in The Perks of Being a Wallflower
Logan Lerman and Emma Watson in The Perks of Being a Wallflower
Photo: Summit Entertainment

Expectations are impossible to avoid and with The Perks of Being a Wallflower I expected very little and received so very much. While it’s filled with cliches and convenient storylines, something about this film stuck with me and after a second viewing I realized it was worthy of a place on my top ten. Logan Lerman, Ezra Miller and Emma Watson create a perfect trio of kids whose outsider status and troubles at home bring their lives into the hearts of one another and the hearts of the audience.

Despite its cliches, Stephen Chbosky (writer, director and author of the book from which the film was based) taps into something honest and real within its traditional story tropes and yet has the tact not to show everything on screen. It would be easy to look down upon and dismiss this film, but if you allow it in, it would be impossible to let go.

#7
Killing Them Softly

Brad Pitt in Killing Them Softly
Brad Pitt in Killing Them Softly
Photo: The Weinstein Co.

Killing Them Softly is one of the few films on this list that I loved and have, unfortunately, not found the time to watch a second time, but it’s also one I am going to be sure I own on Blu-ray and will watch several times over the coming years. While I won’t begrudge the criticism it is too on-the-nose with its metaphors, this commentary on America by way of a modern day gangster story is so well made and so much fun I can’t help but remember that day in Cannes I sat down and watched it with thousands of others in the Grand Palais (read my review here).

While the film may be forgotten by many, the shame will be in not recognizing director Andrew Dominik (The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford) for a second time in a row and star Brad Pitt continues to be remembered more as a pretty face rather than as the actor he is. I suspect both will team at least once more and finally cause people to open their eyes.

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Weekend: Oct. 17, 2019, Oct. 20, 2019

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