January 25, 2014

The 1st Annual Coopies! The 5 Best Films of 2013

2013 was the first year for this blog, and it was also an amazing year in film. Many films that should have found their place in your brain by now. My hope with creating the Coopies was to recognize not only GOOD films, but films that also tend to be overlooked when it comes Academy Awards or Golden Globes time. There was an interesting LA Times article posted some time ago about the surprising demographics of the Oscar voters. At the end of the day, you could argue the Academy Awards have become one big glitzy popularity contest. A packed house of blowhards. And if you don't play along, you may find yourself blacklisted. If you rely on the Oscars to show you the best films of the year, you are relying on an old white guy. If you rely on the Globes, you are relying on a foreign journalist. There's bias everywhere. Including here. There are certain types films that you won't find on this blog in much volume. You won't find a lot of big Hollywood blockbusters. You won't find a lot of big-budget action films. You probably won't find any film that features Vin Diesel. Those films clog up the cinematic pipeline and leave little room for some of the smaller movies to get some attention. And it's a shame, because there are so many amazing independent films released that go unnoticed year after year. At least here, they will all get a better chance.

The Poopie Coopie (Most Disappointing of 2013)Pacific Rim
The colossal summer blockbuster was just a colossal disappointment. Basically a dopey baby of Transformers & Godzilla with giant robots that shake ground without breaking any.

5. Mud
Nichols' unlikely-friendship story, much unlike the murky southern waters of the film, runs deep. McConaughey delivers quite possibly the best performance of his career as the boat-dwelling hermit wanted for murder.

4. The Place Beyond the Pines
Pines is not flawless, but its a weighty epic packing calories with many surprises.

3. Upstream Color
Shane Carruth's mind-bender may take a couple of viewings, and when it hits you you'll slip into hypnotic reverie.

2. 12 Years a Slave
Steve McQueen's adaptation of Northrup's memoir is gripping, difficult and agonizing for all of the right reasons.

1. Her
Jonze's satirical high-tech rom-dram is so well put-together, so well executed. One of it's best qualities is it's subtlety. Instead of being hit in the face with the futuristic elements (like Back to the Future Part II), you become immediately accepting of them. We are not-so-distant from this not-so-distant future. And those reds. Or were they pink?

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