Merry Christmas one and all. Here’s my take on the best and worst films of the year as well as best and weirdest acting performances and best use of music in a film:
Best Films of 2013
- The Best Offer
- The Imposter
- Blue Jasmine
- Before Midnight
- American Hustle
- Twenty Feet from Stardom
- World War Z
- Captain Phillips
- Warm bodies
Worst films of 2013
- Romeo and Juliet (NZ hip-hop version shown at the otherwise great Bayside Film Festival)
- Movie 43
- Scary Movie 5
- The Host
- A Good Day to Die Hard
- Hansel and Gretel: Witch Hunters
- Bad Grandpa
- Grown Ups 2
Overrated films of 2013
- Frances Ha
- The Lone Ranger
- Silver Linings Playbook
- Only God Forgives
- Zero Dark Thirty
- Star Trek: Into Darkness
- The Company You Keep
Underrated films of 2013
- The Paper Boy
- The Great Gatsby
- The Look of Love
Best Acting Performances of 2013
- Cate Blanchett – Blue Jasmine.
- Leo Di Caprio – Django Unchained (he was a pretty good Gatsby too)
- Samuel L Jackson – Django Unchained.
- Amy Adams – American Hustle.
- Christian Bale – American Hustle.
- Jennifer Lawrence – American Hustle.
- Michael B. Jordan – Fruitvale Station.
- Paul Dano – Prisoners.
- Geoffrey Rush – The Best Offer.
- Tom Hanks – Captain Phillips.
- James Spader – Lincoln.
- Tom Hiddleston – in the otherwise awful “Thor: The Dark World”.
Weirdest Acting Performances of 2013
- A face-tattooed, South African-accented Sir Ben Kingsley looking like he had turned up late for the “Cloud Atlas” auditions in “Enders Game”.
- Everyone in “Cloud Atlas” but Hugh Grant as a tribesman and Tom Hanks as a cockney thug took the honours.
- Rob Lowe looking as if he had consulted the “Human Centipede” doctor for plastic surgery in “Behind the Candelabra”.
- John Goodman thinking he was in a Big Lebowski sequel as a drug dealer in “Flight”. Hilarious, entertaining performance but completely at odds with the tone of the movie.
- A maniacal Emma Thompson with a Huckleberry Hound accent in “Beautiful Creatures”.
- Sir Ben once again, as a supposed terrorist in the disappointing “Iron Man 3”.
- John Cusack chomping the scenery as a drawling Southern-fried killer in “The Paper Boy”.
- Mr. Cusack again, as an appallingly miscast Richard Nixon in “The Butler”.
- Bruce Willis’ snooze-a-thon through “GI Joe”, “A Good Day to Die Hard” and “Red 2”.
- Max Martini’s laughable attempt at an Aussie accent in the giant robot turkey “Pacific Rim”.
- Jeremy Renner and Christian Bale’s hair in “American Hustle”.
Best use of music in a film
- Just about everything in “American Hustle” but particularly the terrific sequence featuring the Bee Gees’ How Can You Mend A Broken Heart which showed Irving Rosenfeld (Christian Bale) doubled over with ulcerating guilt as his life (seemed) to fall apart.
- Bruce Springsteen’s Hungry Heart and Bob Dylan’s Shelter from the Storm in a surprisingly effective romantic sequence in “Warm Bodies”.
- Believe it or not, Bob Dylan’s You Ain’t Goin’ Nowhere in that fourth-rate “Borat” impersonation, “Bad Grandpa”.
- Suede’s So Young in the otherwise disappointing “The World’s End”.
- Graham Parker performing some of his classics including Protection in “This is 40”.
- A bit of a ring-in but music by The Descendents and All in documentary “Filmage: The Story of the Descendents”.
- Built For Speed, “End of Year Spectacular” Best and Worst films of 2013 Podcast.
- Film review: DJANGO UNCHAINED, from Built For Speed
- Film review: BRIDGE OF SPIES, from ‘Built For Speed’
- Built For Speed, Play list, Friday 1st February 2013
- Film review: AMERICAN HUSTLE, from Built For Speed