The “Other” Best Films of 2012 List

By January 15, 2013Top 10 Lists

Another year has come and gone.  2012 was a mighty disappointing year for films, until the last, oh, 3 months; then suddenly it started kicking ass.  Oddly enough, the movies I was most looking forward to almost all disappointed in some way, and the ones I thought would be disastrous (like my #2 choice) turned out great.  Funny, how expectations work like that…

Anyway, what would a list like this be without a preface?  I did not see all of the best films of the year; well, d'uh, most will say.  But major award contenders like Les Miserables, Flight, Beasts of the Southern Wild, and Silver Linings Playbook are unseen by me, and so it's possible my list will seem very different than others.  Also, of course, I must re-iterate that this is just all my opinion; my #1 pick I haven't seen on any other Best Of lists, which says, if anything, that we're all mighty different. 

Likewise, many films that I'm seeing on Best Of lists all over the place, like Argo, Lincoln, Zero Dark Thirty, and Amour, I considered either good, or decent, but far from great.  We all have different tastes, and if lists like this serve any purpose at all, it's to both heat up movie discussions as well as point out some titles you may have missed.

And now, the ones that just barely didn't make the cut: Rise of the Guardians (best animated film of the year), Dredd (hilarious and awesome), Argo (overrated, but very enjoyable), Perfect Sense (sadly under-looked), Prometheus (way better than people said), Shame (my country didn't get the film until 2012, so it counts), Zero Dark Thirty (not as good as The Hurt Locker, but intriguing and suspenseful), Skyfall (best Bond I've ever seen, but…that's not saying much), Goon (funniest flick of the year), and 21 Jump Street (the second funniest flick of the year).

Also, special note must go to two films that I just plain didn't know what to do with.  The Secret of Arrietty is the most wonderful animated film of the year, but…technically, it came out in Japan years ago, and I saw it for the first time in 2011.  So I wasn't sure if I could rank it on a 2012 list…same goes with Rebelle: War Witch, the best foreign film I saw this year, but one that hasn't yet received any theatrical distribution that I'm aware of apart from film festivals.  It was just nominated for Best Foreign Film Oscar, but hopefully it will emerge in theatres in 2013, where it will easily make my Best Of list a year from now.  It's a remarkable movie.

Ok, enough jibber-jabber.  Let's do this.