Maybe I’m just getting fooled left and right, but I have been extremely impressed with the quality of movies so far this year. There are several releases just within the first few months that I cannot wait to own on DVD/Blu-Ray and watch on loop days after purchase. Some movies as much as I loved them and may end up on my end of the year top 10 sometimes lose a bit with multiple viewings while others get better and better every time I watch them. An example of a movie I really loved and was surprised about when I left the theaters was FRIENDS WITH KIDS and is one I’m referring to that could end up on my top 10 of the year once I’m able to watch it again, but one I wondered how it would hold up on a second or even third viewing.
Going further, I rarely have time to see movies more than once in theaters and so far this year I have managed to see one movie twice, even though it won’t be holding the torch as my favorite halfway through 2012 and that’s 21 JUMP STREET. Admittedly I was extremely and maybe overly enthusiastic about this when I got out of it the first time, which was evident when people I know including my wife felt a little let down when they didn’t love it nearly as much as me. I do stand by my opinion though as it is still the comedy to beat so far in 2012. Some other notable releases that deserve some love as standouts of 2012 so far are films like THE HUNGER GAMES, PROMETHEUS, GOON and CHRONICLE. Of those last few I’m not sure if they will make the list at the end of the year, especially if the quality keeps up as it’s been, but anything is possible.
So when I sat down trying to think of what movie I would call my favorite of the year so far in 2012 I came down at almost a three way tie. It was so incredibly hard to narrow it down to just one and in the end I think I have one that I can say is my favorite so far this year while the other two should not be slighted because as I said, once I can watch each of them one or two more times it could change. Of the three I have only seen one of them for a second time and that has only been because one was just released on DVD. Before I get to that thought the other two films I have also been extremely enthusiastic about since seeing them and reside in vastly different genres.
I’ll start with THE CABIN IN THE WOODS- here’s a film that floored me in the end, but it took me on a ride that for the first part I wasn’t exactly sure what was so special. Once the third act kicks in everything just sort of fell into place and I started to fill in the gaps and loving the first half more than I did at first. It’s bound to be one of my favorite horror movies of the year, however should I decide to ditch a horror list and go with a best of the year overall, I’d be shocked if this didn’t show up somewhere.
Coming in second is another film with Joss Whedon attached, only this time as the director, THE AVENGERS. I am still head over heels in love with this movie, but without a chance to go back through and pick out some of the things I may have overlooked due to my utter enthusiasm for the film I couldn’t bring myself to say that this is my favorite of the year so far let alone if it will be there for an end of the year list. Regardless, it is still one of my favorites and if I had to put a number on it, it’s easily number two right now.
Last but not least my favorite movie so far this year. To give a little context, I expected nothing from this movie when I sat down to watch it, based on the sheer popcorn fluff his precious film ended up being. What I did expect was wall to wall wolf punching- needless to say sometimes expectations can be exceeded and that they were with THE GREY. I dug THE A-TEAM, but let’s be honest, it’s a ridiculous movie.
Joe Carnahan set us up to knock us down with THE GREY- the marketing sold it as a thriller featuring an epic scene of Liam Neeson throwing down with a wolf and then what we got was a survival thriller with deep introspective themes such as dealing and coming to terms with death. I wasn’t expecting a superbly acted drama/thriller which is why when that’s what I got I was hooked and even the somewhat let down of an ending didn’t sway me- I prefer the restraint at the end rather than Carnahan calling his shot and swinging for the fences, when there is a severe possibility of that swing whiffing hardcore and illicit violent boos from the stands.
There you have it, my favorite movies of 2012 so far. Trust me, we have a long way to go and there are still a lot of movies I just haven’t had a chance to see. Keep your eyes peeled for reviews posted throughout the rest of the year to stay up to date and possibly placing bets on what will be in the ranks of the top ten lists at the end of the year. Till then feel free to weigh in with what your favorite movies of 2012 are. Maybe even what you consider to be the worst. Luckily I haven’t been supremely let down by a ton of flicks this year, but if I had to pick, the distinction belongs to DARK SHADOWS- yet then again, I wasn’t holding my breath that it was going to be the second coming of movies.
What are your favorite movies of 2012 so far? Worst?
Follw me: Luke (@CrummyLuke on Twitter)