Posted by: themoviecheese | July 1, 2013

Top Ten Films of 2013…So Far

Top Ten Films of 2013…So Far

So we are officially half way through the year, and as such here is my top ten films list of 2013 so far…

10. Side Effects

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Steven Soderbergh injects his latest film with a staggering amount of suspense from the very first frame. At times I felt like I was watching a modern Hitchcock movie, with some absolutely brilliant plot twists that will stop your breathing dead in its tracks.

9. The Look of Love

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Steve Coogan kicks off an excellent year for him (with the up coming Alan Partridge movie) with the hilarious and touching biopic of one of Britain’s most controversial entrepreneurs, Paul Raymond.

8. Man of Steel

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Christopher Nolan, David Goyer and Zack Snyder all team up to bring the king of supeheros back to our big screens with the huge reboot Man of Steel. Henry Cavill completely kills it as Superman and the dual father roles of Russell Crowe and Kevin Costner add some hefty emotional weight. Cue a last hour filled with blistering special effects and fight scenes, and we finally have the movie that Superman deserves.

7 The Place Beyond the Pines

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Probably one of the most unpredictable films of the year, saying anything about the plot would simply spoil it. Beautifully written and featuring possibly the best soundtrack of the year so far.

6. Stoker

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Chan-wook Park’s (Oldboy, Sympathy for Mr Vengeance, Thirst) English language debut is every bit as harrowing and complex as his efforts back home. The performances are brilliant and the visuals are probably the most gorgeous of the year.

5. Maniac

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Frank Khalfoun remakes one of my favorite horror films of all time, featuring Elijah Wood in the absolute best performance of his career. Simply put, he is fucking mental in this movie. The POV narrative style really adds a sense of foreboding to each scene. You know when somebody is going to die, you just don’t know how. So you sit there anticipating it, twitching at the very thought of this onslaught of gore that it about to fill your peripheral vision.

4. Django Unchained

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Quentin Tarantino returns with one of his most accessible films to date (next to Pulp Fiction of course). It also doesn’t suffer from that common Tarantino trait in that every character talks like Tarantino, in this they have their own personality and act like the person they are supposed to be acting like. Jamie Fox is a brilliant lead and Christophe Waltz once again turns in an excellent performance, as does Leonardo DiCaprio as the villain. But the performance that really struck out for me was definitely Samuel L Jackson; cast completely against type as a (well, I can’t really say), Jackson’s performance is the absolute stand out of the entire film and possibly his career, and that’s a bold statement.

3. Cloud Atlas

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The Wachowski’s return to Sci-fi with their good friend Tom Tykwer (Run Lola Run) in tow. Adapting one of the most thought provoking science fiction novels of all time, means we are treated to some of the best visuals the brothers have ever brought to screen, coupled with an absolutely massive story that spans generations.

2. A Hijacking

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A Hijacking is staggering realism at its finest, featuring an incredibly in depth character study from the writer of The Hunt (my favorite film of 2012). The plot is tight and flows nicely as does the tempo of the film. Cinematography beautifully emphasizes the realism and atmosphere of the film, and even the score is wonderfully understated yet fully appropriate. One of the most suspenseful films of the year, no doubt.

1. A Field In England

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A Field In England isn’t even out yet, but when it does come out, I implore every fan of British cinema in any form to rush out for it straight away. I was lucky enough to catch a preview of this stunning masterpiece. Ben Wheatley (Kill List, Sightseers) has once again proven that he is the most versatile director that Britain has to offer. Revealing a film that is art before it is entertainment, he has crafted a story that is every bit beautiful as it is bewildering. Hellish battles, hallucinogenic visions, alchemy, resurrection and witchcraft. These themes all ooze through the seems of Wheatley’s and Amy Jump’s (Wheatley’s wife) script. It will take a film of absolute, sheer perfection to beat this as my favorite film of the year. Plus, its commercial release is 5th July (right round the corner), where it will simultaneously release in cinema, on Blu-ray, DVD and On-demand, AND it will screen on Film4 that very night. So you really don’t have an excuse not to watch it.

So what are your favorite films of the year? Sound out in the comments below…

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