Ho ho ho. The turkey and stuffing isn't even shat out yet and here we are tucking another year into its coffin and compiling lists and pages of who/what was THE BEST of 2013. It's all very subjective but here are The BEST MOVIES OF 2013 from a guy who only watched a fraction of the ones released in English (and a couple foreign ones).
Best Action: Summer was a bummer in 2013, at least as far as epic blockbuster action flicks go (thankfully Whistler had epic weather so it didn't matter that much). Certainly a lot of stuff either blew up (Iron Man 3) or got torn down (Man of Steel) but much of the big popcorn-movie offerings failed to connect, Pacific Rim had sweet action but a garbage story and The Lone Ranger was way too long (but kind of gonzo fun anyhow.) World War Z was more of a huge tension movie than action so I guess this one goes to grindhouse sequel Machete Kills. Chicks with guns!
Best Comedy: Apparently everyone (even dogs) is suffering from anxiety these days, so perhaps it's not surprising there were two comedies about the end of the world this year. The World's End, which saw the Shawn of the Dead team tackle an alien invasion, was pretty funny but the knee-slapper of the year was This is the End, the Seth Rogen/Evan Goldberg apocalypse-done-right film starring Rogen and Jay Baruchel trapped at Franco's house during the rapture. It wasn't an easy concept to pull off and the boys nail it with a little help from their friends. Go Michael Cera!
The 'Game of the Year' Award: goes to the single scene, exchange, or line of dialogue that is so ridiculously funny but also incredibly true at the same time. This year it goes to Jason Sudekis for the We're the Millers haircut scene. Type that into Youtube and see for yourself.
The 'Thanks For Not Selling Out' Award: Goes to Ryan Gosling. He could bank on the fact that every chick loves him and just stroke out the kinds of movies Ryan Reynolds does but instead he throws down in Place Beyond the Pines, a pretty kick-ass cop-and-robber drama co-starring Bradley Cooper and Ray Liotta. Then he reteams with director Nicholas Winding Refn (Drive) for some ultra-violent arthouse-mayhem in Only God Forgives. 2013 certifies Gosling's total badassery.
Best Movie You Probably Didn't See: There are two movies out there about vapid entitled teenagers burglarizing the homes of Hollywood Stars for kicks called The Bling Ring, so make sure you get the one directed by Sofia Coppula. Stellar acting and pitch-perfect direction make this one a sort of Heathers for the next generation (If you saw that one go find Sightseers, English comedy at its blackest).
Best Date Movie: Give it to Warm Bodies, which is essentially Romeo & Juliet with zombies. Also: Her is the brand new Spike Jonze flick about a dude (Joaquin Pheonix) who falls in love with his computer's operating system (voiced by Scarlett Johansson). Her is epic.
Best Documentary: The one that moved me the most was Blackfish, a flick about the SeaWorld-y industry of captive orcas, but 2013 was also a great year for music docs. 20 Feet From Stardom, The Punk Singer and Sound City were all stellar but the game changer was Through the Never, Metallica's 3D IMAX concert-film-with-a-real-narrative. Go check it out even if you only remember a few Metallica songs; it wails.
Part 2 of the Best of 2013 runs next week and in the meantime hit the theatre because so many of the year's best are playing right now.