Wednesday, January 15, 2014

My Favorite Movies Of 2013

We are halfway through January already.  Fifteen days into 2014 and I haven't written 2013 on one single check!  (I haven't written one single check.) It may be too late for "Best Of" lists and I told myself I wouldn't do any more after the 'albums' one and the 'books I read' one.  But then I watched The Golden Globes and I was struck by how little the films that won represented what I liked in 2013.  So, I had to make my own list.  Full disclosure, I haven't seen everything.  I have, however, seen most of them except 12 Years A Slave, which I know I'll probably like but I'm saving that one for when I'm home alone with candy and tissues.  So, this is not the most comprehensive list in the world, it's merely a few movies I dug from last year that I think you might dig too.  They're kinda sorta in order I guess.  I mean, maybe they are.  I dunno. Here we go:

1) Inside Llewyn Davis
Granted, I was pretty much pre-programed to love this because I love the Coen brothers and I'm a sucker for movies about music or musicians but holy wow, this was great!  I watched it with some friends.  We'd all gotten bored with American Hustle the day before but sat rapt the entire first scene of the film, which is literally just a dude and his guitar playing a song in a spotlight.  And it just gets better from there.  Watch this immediately and say hello to my favorite cat ever.

2) Evil Dead
I didn't have high expectations for this one.  I'd recently rewatched the original and just didn't think they could recapture the campiness but guess what?  Yes, that's right, they did.  It's fun and gory and yeah, pretty scary.  We saw it at the 21+ showing and I was pretty glad I had a cocktail about halfway through when I noticed my palms were all sweaty.  Rent this and watch it with all the lights off.

3) This Is The End
My little sister was in town and we wanted to watch something fun so we walked down to my local theater and bought two tickets for AWESOMENESS.  This is so so so funny.  I already loved these guys but now I'd like to wear Seth Rogen around my neck as a necklace.  It's just so smart and original and silly.  I laughed so freaking hard.  Oh and Craig Robinson is the best.  Yup. You have to watch this if you haven't already. Oscar!!!

4) Sound City
This documentary left me delighted and full of love for Dave Grohl. If you love music, you have to watch this one.  There's something so amazing about learning about the place where so many amazing albums were recorded.  You also get a lot of Nirvana history, so that's cool if you're like me and haven't taken off your flannel since Kurt died.

5) Her
I kept waiting for this to win every single Golden Globe but it didn't and I'm pretty confused about it.  Why doesn't everyone have the exact same taste in everything as I do?  Bullshit!  This is a very sweet story about love and connections and being true to yourself.  Well, in my opinion it is.  What do I know? I think you'll like this one.

6) Much Ado About Nothing
Shakespeare plus Joss Whedon equals a happy Kendra.  I just loved this.  Every actor in the film is wonderful and it's done in a really spare modern way that lets the story just be the story.  There are some cool different interpretations, of course, but what do you expect, actors standing around in tights saying lines in a spotlight?  Nah, this is way way cooler.  About twelve of you will like this one but those twelve will like it so hard that you'll need a cigarette afterward.  (Just try not to yell out "Oooh, Buffy!" or "Angel!" or "Dollhouse, y'all!" while you're watching.  People don't like that apparently.)

7) The Hobbit: The Desolation Of Smaug
Let me first get it out of the way and admit, yes, it is a little long.  And, no, I don't really know why there's a white orc following them around either.  But, you know what?  I don't care.  It's still a super fun movie and it still allows me to see one of my favorite books brought to life.  I love the way the dragon looks, I love the actors and I have a blast watching these films.  Bring on the third!!!

8) The Heat
Yes, really.  Look, guys, I wasn't sure about this one either.  I went to see it in the theater basically to support a movie starring women.  But, it's really really funny.  Sandra Bullock and Melissa McCarthy are just perfect together.  I spent the entire film laughing my ass off.  This is one I'll actually watch again and again like Anchorman or Fight Club.  (Just ignore that last example.) Rent this!  Rent it now!

9) The World's End
I feel about this like I felt about This Is The End, I really like everything these guys do (Shaun Of The Dead is one of my favorite movies ever ever) but this one really lived up.  It's just freaking DELIGHTFUL.  So funny and nostalgic and just cool.  I feel like I've dated Simon Pegg's character at least five times.  You'll have to watch this one with a beer, of course.

10) Warm Bodies
Yeah, yeah, I know.  Of course I like this.  But, so what?  I like zombie movies and there's the whole Shakespeare thing.  So, okay, it's predictable but I thought this was so fun and so sweet.  I wish I'd thought of the idea.  It's also well-executed.  This is the perfect movie to watch on a rainy Saturday afternoon.  But don't wait for rain, just watch it now.

11) The Way Way Back
I watched this in hours ten and eleven of an eleven hour flight. I'd already watched three films.  I was super hungry and tired and pissy and my leg had fallen asleep.  But this movie still managed to grab my interest.  It's sad and nostalgic but also funny.  I dunno.  I feel like pretty much anyone will like this one.

Honorable Mentions: Django Unchained, The Conjuring, Behind The Candelabra

Okay, that's my list.  Sorry if your favorite isn't on here but I gotta do me, right?  Hopefully there's at least one of these you haven't seen yet so you can go watch it and then be eternally grateful to me for recommending it.  (I like candy, vodka and puppy videos.)  Happy movie watching!