Top 10 Movies From The First Half of 2012

June is here, which means so is my birthday, and as a birthday gift to myself I’m going to make another list.  Hooray for lists!  June also means that we are half-way through another year and that it’s time to reflect on the massive amount of new releases that I’ve already seen.  With still a dozen or so highly anticipated releases to come, I’m pretty sure that my year-end list will look vastly different from this one.

Check out my top 10 movies from the first half of the year after the jump

10. Last Winter

Plot: A stubborn cattle farmer who has fallen on hard times is forced to confront his path down life’s long road.

My two cents: Picturesque french countryside landscapes accompanied with slothful pacing and a sparse melodic stringed soundtrack made watching this film a meditative and calm experience, something not found all too often in theatres nowadays.

9. The Cabin in the Woods

Plot: Five friends go for a break at a remote cabin in the woods, where they get more than they bargained for. Together, they must discover the truth behind the cabin in the woods.

My two cents: Horror nerds (myself included) will most likely experience something of a horrorgasm about 3 quarters of the way through, whereas fans of self-aware movie making of any kind should find this enjoyable as well.

8. Snow on Tha Bluff

Plot: The story of Atlanta robbery boy and crack dealer, Curtis Snow, who stole a camera from some college kids in a dope deal and made a documentary about his life.

My two cents: A very well done and interestingly unique take on the whole “found-footage” genre.

7. Tokyo Waka

Plot: A portrait of a city through the perspective of crows.

My two cents: This documentary, seemingly about some 20,000 plus Tokyo dwelling crows, transformed itself into an existential viewing that not only identifies the pulse of a city, but was able to offer a unique insight as to how a city breathes.

6. Moonrise Kingdom

Plot: A pair of young lovers flee their New England town, which causes a local search party to fan out and find them.

My two cents: Wes Anderson’s multi-layered comedy was like being stuck inside a young reader’s novel and never wanting to get out.

5. Dreileben Trilogy: Beats Being Dead

Plot: This is the first part of a trilogy (that does not have to be seen as a trilogy) that focuses on young love.  All three films are set during the same time period, and all three films deal with a different protagonist who in some way is connected to Molesch, a local escaped convict.

My two cents: Watching this is like watching something more sinister than just another well put together coming-of-age drama – something a little more on the David Lynchian side.

4. Unfair World

Plot: Two aging police interrogators on the cusp of retirement, one of which played by Dogtooth‘s Christos Stergioglou, find themselves involved in a murder coverup, which, like any good murder coverup story involves large sums of money being owed, double-crosses, and the threat of being caught.

My two cents: Picture the antics of the Coen Brothers‘ Burn After Reading.  Now substitute every actor’s highly emoted performance in that movie for one of monotone expressionless – a face you would find on a sloth perhaps.

3. The Snowtown Murders

Plot: Based on true events, 16 year-old Jamie falls in with his mother’s new boyfriend and his crowd of self-appointed neighborhood watchmen, a relationship that leads to a spree of torture and murder.

My two cents: Director Justin Kurzel‘s debut falls right in line with all of the exceptional Aussie crime movies that have been coming out of late.

2. Twixt

Plot: A horror writer enters a little Twin Peaks-esque town for a book signing at the local hardware store.  After an odd visit from a ghost, and an even odder visit from the local sheriff, the writer becomes convinced that his next story has to be written in this town.

My two cents: Francis Ford Coppola‘s return to horror had me questioning if I watched this while awake in a theatre, or were lucid dreaming the entire thing.

1. Found Memories

Plot: A young traveler armed with a small arsenal of cameras arrives in a village of seniors and slowly acclimates herself into the town’s sluggish lifestyle.

My two cents: I can’t recall the last time watching such a slow-paced movie had me so excited and at a loss for words.  Astonishing.

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Categories: Best Of Lists, Features

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