Sunday, January 6, 2013

Ten Best Films' 2012 Mini-Poll

1. Holy Motors (Leos Carax)
125 points (AZ, KW, LB, MA, ML, MS, RS)
2. Barbara (Christian Petzold)
83 points (LB, MA, ML, PK, RS)
3. Moonrise Kingdom (Wes Anderson)
72 points (KW, LB, MA, PK)
4. Django Unchained (Quentin Tarantino)
69 points (AZ, JS, MA, RS, SB)
5. Tabu (Miguel Gomes)
65 points (LB, MA, ML, RS)
6. Amour (Michael Haneke)
58 points (KW, ML, PK)
7. The Deep Blue Sea (Terence Davies, 2011)
51 points (JS, LB, MA)
8. Looper (Rian Johnson)
46 points (LB, MS, SB)
9. Cosmopolis (David Cronenberg)
43 points (LB, ML, PK)
10. Beasts of the Southern Wild (Benh Zeitlin)
42 points (AZ, KW, SB)
11. Oslo, August 31st (Joachim Trier, 2011)
40 points (AZ, JS, KW)

Films Receiving Two Citations: The Cabin in the Woods (Drew Goddard) - 33 points (MS, SB), The Master (Paul Thomas Anderson) - 33 points (MS, SB), Silver Linings Playbook (David O. Russell) - 30 points (LB, PK), Once Upon a Time in Anatolia (Nuri Bilge Ceylan) - 29 points (JS, KW)*, Compliance (Craig Zobel) - 27 points (AZ, MS), Killer Joe (William Friedkin, 2011) - 27 points (AZ, KW), Premium Rush (David Koepp) - 27 points (PK, SB), Argo (Ben Affleck) - 26 points (MS, SB), Footnote (Joseph Cedar, 2011) - 23 points (LB, MA).

Combined Mini-Poll Results: 2008-2012
1. The Tree of Life (Terrence Malick, 2011) - 164.5 points
2. Summer Hours (Olivier Assayas, 2008) - 147
3. The Headless Woman (Lucrecia Martel, 2008) - 139
4. The Social Network (David Fincher, 2010) - 136
5. Two Lovers (James Gray, 2008) - 129
6. A Christmas Tale (Arnaud Desplechin, 2008) - 126
7. Holy Motors (Leos Carax, 2012) - 125
8. Drive (Nicolas Winding Refn, 2011) - 101.5
9. The White Ribbon (Michael Haneke, 2009) - 101
10. Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past Lives (Apichatpong Weerasethakul, 2010) - 99
11. The Turin Horse (Béla Tarr and Ágnes Hranitzky, 2011) - 98

Note [*]: Films marked with an asterisk received at least one vote in last year's poll.

Scoring: Each citation receives ten points with an additional ten for a first place citation, nine for second, and so on, on down to one for tenth. This method of scoring is intended to give appropriate weight to those films that have been cited most frequently by this year's participants. For those participants who have not specified an order for their choices, 5.5 points have been assigned to each of their choices.

Key: AZ - Alberto Zambenedetti (Ten Best Films), JS - Jeremi Szaniawski (Ten Best Films), KW - Karen Wang (You're Making a Scene), LB - Lisa K. Broad (Tativille), MA - Michael J. Anderson (Tativille), ML - Mike Lyon (Tits & Gore), MS - Matt Singer (Criticwire), PK - Pamela Kerpius (Ten Best Films), RS - R. Emmet Sweeney (Ten Best Films), SB - Soren Bailey (Ten Best Films).


Unknown said...

This is a decent list, yes. Great mention of Holy Motors, which has been severely ignored regarding notices for Lavant.

BUT I would have to say that Django is in no way the second-best Hollywood release of the year, and should not rank above films that surpass it in their execution (and I stress execution) of vision. YES, it's entertaining and there is a lot of Tarantino love as a singular writer-director; other singular directors, however, produced more notable and arguably more original work this year. Tarantino would be the first to acknowledge that (A) he could have used more time to shorten the runtime; and (B) that it's a good romp of a picture but not one of his greats--though he'd remind you that it certainly would never exist if his "father hadn't met his mother" (see Charlie Rose). I'd like to emphasize the time factor, since I really think there is a great film here that demanded more exacting editing work and better pacing in its second half, as compared to its more inspired beginning.

What I'm getting at is I'm shocked Zero Dark Thirty didn't get a single mention, as it belongs among the top directed films of the year. I would guess it has to do with Bigelow not yet having earned the strong fan base she deserves among cinephiles, though she comes from an academic background; I hope it doesn't mean allegations of inaccuracy, being pro-torture and immoral knocked the film down on your votes. I strongly believe Bigelow and Boal's movie surpasses many on this list, and Bigelow produced her most significant work this year as a director.

Michael J. Anderson said...


I share your surprise! Speaking for myself - and for Lisa - I can tell you that its exclusion from out lists was a consequence of our not yet seeing the film (since it premieres where we live on 1/11), not that there is any assurance it would have made the cut if we had seen it. However, I suppose I would ask my fellow contributors if there are any among you that had an active problem with the film, or were at least lukewarm?

Also, I can confirm that it was one of Matt's favorites of 2012.

Unknown said...

Is it premature then to vote on the ten best films of the year if not everyone saw every movie? Others could have missed them too. It would be weird to count a few end-of-year releases among your choices next year while others are counting them here, thereby bringing totals down for certain titles. I see how you kept to your cinematic experiences in the calendar year, but Zero Dark Thirty and Amour could very well change your list, and the results of the mini-poll (or maybe not).

Michael J. Anderson said...

Since no one sees everything (let alone everything of interest), it is not in the slightest premature. With that said, the combined results are intended precisely to make up for the fact that people see films in different years. In fact, SUMMER HOURS, our all-time number two, received the great majority of its votes the year after its official premiere. So there is precedent for an AMOUR or ZERO DARK THIRTY to perform well next year.