Thursday, 3 January 2013

The Most Memorable Films of 2012

It is January which means that the blogging world compiles their best/worst lists.  Due to nothing other than laziness my list is based on the most memorable films I have viewed over the past year. 

It digs me out of a rather large hole for two reasons:
1: I am not compelled to compile a best and worst list as memorable covers everything
2: I am not limited to films released in 2012 or viewed in the cinema
As I tend to make the rules up as I go along this suits me perfectly.

10 – The Artist - January
The Artist almost begrudgingly takes a spot on my list of memorable films of 2012.  The silent film deserved all the praise it received for daring to try something different. 
I enjoyed The Artist in the cinema but the soundtrack gets more love than the film does.  It was a great achievement but I am relieved that it didn’t start a craze of silent black and white films.

9 – John Carter - March
I feel like I am in the minority with John Carter but I don’t particularly care as I enjoyed it – granted the film is flawed, probably too long and Carters only mode of transportation across Mars is to get kidnapped but there is something about the adventure that entertains me.  It is a bizarre mixture of laughing with it and at it but there is also genuine affection. 
I think it’s popular for the cool kidz to hate this film. I don’t.
8 – Shame - January
January 2012 and Shame are now a very long time ago but this was the film that confirmed beyond any doubt the acting ability of Michael Fassbender. 
I will never understand how Fassy didn’t get Oscar nominated for his performance.
7 – [REC] 3: Genesis - November
[REC] and [REC]2 didn’t get a cinematic release and [REC]3: Genesis did not break tradition. 
I love the [REC] franchise but unfortunately the shift in tone and style for the third offering was so jarring it became the weakest of the series so far.  On another day the over the top gore and humour would have been enjoyable but as a [REC] film it felt totally out of place. 
I was expecting the changes before I watched the dvd and was well prepared for them but I still can’t help but feel disappointed by what I saw.
6 – The Avengers - April
There was a toss-up between The Dark Knight Rises and The Avengers for a place on the list – both were great films in their own rights but The Avengers wins a spot on the list because of the goose-bump inducing Avengers Assemble moment which still packs a punch on dvd. The Dark Knight Rises dvd has yet to be purchased.
It'll take something special for the sequel to top this moment
The Dark Knight Rises is the final instalment of Nolan’s epic trilogy but The Avengers started off with Iron Man in 2008 and built from there. 

The Avengers brought all of the characters together in a film that made sense to a non-comic-book-reading fan.  Seeing the members of the team work together as one solid unit during the Battle for New York was one of the most memorable moments of the year.
5 – The Woman in Black - February
I had read The Woman in Black and seen the play prior to the film being announced so there was a ridiculous amount of excitement for the big screen adaptation.
Aside from being an excellent film what made the Woman in Black memorable was that my friends and I rocked up to the cinema on Valentine’s Day only to find that the queue was out the door and around the street.  This was an amazing achievement for romance in our bleak little town and the only single people in the vicinity turned around and went home.  We viewed The Woman in Black on 15 February 2012.
I didn’t warm to the casting of Daniel Radcliffe until I watched the film and was more relieved than surprised that I didn’t see Harry Potter.  The director, James Watkins, is hopefully one to keep an eye on.

The Woman in Black is one of the best horror films of the year.
4 – The Snapper - September/October (?)
The Snapper is an Irish comedy from 1993 in which teenager Sharon Curely falls pregnant after a drunken one night stand.  The family deal with the pregnancy in a typically hilarious and unsympathetic Irish manner.   
The humour is similar to the comedy in The Guard right down to the casual racism.  Everything about The Snapper is distinctly Irish and I love it for that reason alone.
I saw The Snapper at the Belfast Film Festival and my biggest regret of 2012 was not asking Stephen Frears for an autograph when I was standing beside him.
3 – Chronicle - February
Right when we were all getting bored of found-footage Chronicle came along with a shoe string budget and sci-fi setting and created one of the best films of the year. 

It was a fantastic achievement and breathed new life into a dying fad.  It'll be interesting to see what director Josh Trank does with the Fantastic Four reboot (IMDB).
2 – The Grey - January
The Grey is another of my favourite films of 2012.  It was bleak, cold and the consent but mostly unseen threat of the wolves created a genuinely tense experience.  It didn’t do Liam Neeson’s reputation as a badass any harm either.
I am blessed by being part of a Nerdy Trio that practically lives in the cinema but The Grey was the first time that I had ever ventured there on my own.  This was a decision that almost backfired during the ridiculously stressful and realistic plane crash as there were no hands to hold.
1 – I Saw the Devil - August
I Saw the Devil was originally released in 2010 but as I am always a good few steps behind everyone else I didn’t see the film until August 2012 and only viewed it on the recommendation of a fellow blogger.
I don’t normally go for uber violent films and because of this revenge thrillers are almost at the bottom of my list of films to watch. 

I Saw the Devil is a welcome exception to the rule.  I love everything about this film – the plot is strong from start to finish and the performances of Byung-hun Lee and Min-Sik Choi are exceptional.

There is violence, blood and gore but it is never over the top. There are some scenes, for example a little quiet moment with blood covering snow, which are eerily beautiful. 
After Senna last year I wasn’t sure what deserved the number 1 spot for 2012.  As soon as I looked through my blog I Saw the Devil was the obvious choice.  
I Saw the Devil was memorable for being an excellent film but more so as it was from a genre that I (still) purposely avoid.


  1. wahoo, thank you for the mention!!! :D

    Yay for REC3, TWIB, Chronicle & The Grey! Haven't seen Shame yet but I will soon. Heard and read some awesome stuff about it.

    1. Shame is one of those films that you watch once and never again. Not much happens but Fassy has never been better!

      I loved I Saw the Devil - I give you full credit for that one!

      K :-)

  2. Great list, some wonderful choices across the board K, I'll need to search some out.

    1. Thank you!

      Aside from the few dvd watches it is a pretty mainstream list but that is just how it worked out this year.

      I missed the big Oscar hitters and Les Mis hasn't arrived yet so expect to see it next year

      Are you doing a list?


  3. If it makes you feel any better, I only saw the Artist and the Woman in Black. I loved the Artist.


    1. The Woman in Black was a great film - at least you saw the good ones on the list! :-)

  4. I love how The Avengers gets another picture besides the poster ;) I still haven't seen I Saw The Devil, even though I read your review about it months ago. I was disappointed only by the fact there were no terrible films here that you could unleash your fury on...again! And how could you not ask Stephen Frears for an autograph? He's a really good director! He made The Grifters and High Fidelity! Please tell me you talked to him/got a picture with him at least...

    1. The Avengers assembling deserved a picture on its own!

      I Saw the Devil is definitely worth a look - make sure you tell me if you ever get around to watching it

      Stephen Frears was standing beside me and I said nothing. My aunt wanted a picture of Roddy Doyle so I ended up hovering beside Frears! I said nothing. Such an idiot lol

      K :-)