Dick’s Top 13 Favorite Flicks of 2013

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Dick Hollywood’s Top 13 Flicks of 2013

Too many movies and not enough time. Miss ’em in the Theater and have to wait sometimes until Mid-January or later the following year to see them. So this list reflects only the Films I was able to see up until the time it posts. As per usual, all of the Flicks are in alphabetical order, but there are two Films that really stood out for me this year and I will let you which ones in their write ups. So kick back and watch the Trailers and seek ’em out if you feel inclined to do so, but don’t you come back hollering and calling me bad names just because you did not care for them.

A Hijacking (Kapringen)

A fictionalized Somali Pirate story coming out before Captain Phillips, Danish Writer/Director Tobias Lindholm presents us with a tense and understated film that creates a remarkable feeling of discomfort. The film shows us what it might feel like to be taken hostage, along with showing us the negotiating that takes place between the Shipping Company and translator working for the pirates. Extremely worth a look.

The Act of Killing

Tied with other Favorite Flick of the Year, this unconventional Documentary is a must see for anybody interested in World History and Documentary Film in general. Interviews with Leaders of Indonesian Death Squads from 1965 to 1966 are asked to act out re-enactments of some of their killings and film it like a movie.  The killers themselves come up with the look, feel and what type of scene to shoot. Their take on Film Noir to Musicals make for one creepy, sad, frightening, sickening, and at times absurdly funny Documentary.

Frances Ha

Greta Gerwig and Noah Baumback have written a fun little slice of life Flick, about coming to terms with becoming and acting like an adult. Frances awkwardly tries to find her footing and place in life and in NYC. This great little Black and White gem of a film is Noah’s best since, “A Squid and the Whale”.  Highly enjoyable and highly recommended.

The Great Beauty (La Grande Bellezza)

Paolo Sorrentino’s love for Rome, art, stories and Fellini, shines through his cynical protagonist, Journalist Jep Gambardella. Late night parties, walks through ancient buildings with beautiful art owned by Princesses, and taking a date to a funeral, are some of the encounters we share with Jep. It’s a beautiful fun film with sights and sounds to behold.

Her

This really is a touching poignent love story between a Man and his Computer Operating System. It’s a quirky romantic comedy/drama( I refuse to use the word Dramedy), that made me laugh, smile and shed some tears. Yes Dick Hollywood gets all weepy at movies… SO WHAT?!?!

The Kings of Summer

A nice little coming of age story, where three teen friends decide to runaway and build their own house in the middle of a forest to live in. With a stand out performance by Moises Arias, playing the odd and eccentric Biaggio. Just an all around fun film.

Nebraska

Second Black and White Flick on this list, which helps to show off and accentuate some amazing Nebraskan landscapes. Bruce Dern brings to life an ever so subtle performance of a man who is winding down at the end of his life and wants to travel to Omaha to pick up his 1 million Dollars he believes he won from the Publishers Clearing House Sweepstakes he received in the mail. His younger son opts to take him there, so that he may get to know his Father a little better. A funny and melancholic road trip with a great supporting cast of characters. Especially June Squibb who plays the Mom.

Sightseers

Ben Wheatly’s darkly comic Killers in Love Flick, is a fun road trip, but certainly not for the squeamish. Chris and Tina, newly dating, decide to go on Holiday in Chris’ Abbey Oxford Caravan. and along the way Tina learns that Chris has a penchant for murder as  more mirth, merriment and mayhem ensue. Funny and Bloody Good! (See what I did there with the word Bloody? Pretty Punny Huh?)

Spring Breakers

Harmony Korine, one of the most divisive Writer/Directors working today, has created one of his most polished Flicks to date, but clearly just as divisive as ever. One of the prettiest nightmares I have ever seen. Harmony has never been a filmmaker for the everyone tastes, and this film is no exception. The film’s non linear storytelling with flashbacks and flash-forwards, voiced over dialogue repeated again and again, along with a bright neon palette, might put many some people off. Hopefully though, new fans will emerge after checking it out, and then move on to his earlier work, which are quite unique experiences as well.

This is the End

Gather a bunch of friends that have been in a bunch of films together before, write a script about the end of the world that happens while at a big Hollywood party at James Franco’s house, and a silliness and madcap hi-jinx will follow. The celebrity death and destruction in the beginning of the flick is funny enough to warrant this on my Top 13. Self deprecating, self reflexive, and satirically self absorbed…

12 Years a Slave

A brutal and moving film of a free man who is kidnapped and sold into Slavery and the many other people he met that were enslaved along side of him. It is heart wrenching and fantastic acting from the entire cast. Sarah Paulson’s great performance as a Slave Owner’s cruel and scorned wife has seriously been overlooked so far this Awards season.

Upstream Color

My other Favorite Flick of the Year!   Writer, Director, Producer Co-Star, Cinematographer, Editor, Camera Operator and Music Composer, Filmmaker Shane Carruth brings us this unconventional narrative  and polarizing mind fuck of a film. Shane has created visual poetry with a story that is fairly hard to summarize in a paragraph. Worms and pigs and hypnosis, Oh My! Check out the trailer, read this Interview, and take a gander at the NY Times Review, then Go And Watch The Damn Movie Why Don’t Cha!

“It’s satisfying on a level and that there’s a story there, but that it’s not something you have to see twice, it’s something you want to see twice or hopefully more. It’s something that you put on and internalize the way you would an album. I think I would like to see narrative get there, to the point where, like an album, you put it on, you don’t know everything about it, but you listen to it a few times and suddenly recognize all of this nuance and it becomes one of your favorites.” – Shane Carruth

You’re Next!

All this yammering and clammering this year from all of these Horror Sites and Genre lovers about what a great year it was for Horror Films and how James Wan’s “The Conjuring” was so good and blah blah blah… I feel there were a handful of extremely good and interesting Horror Flicks in 2013. Nothing great or groundbreaking, but some pretty fun ones to be had. The Conjuring is overrated and simply just a delayed Jump Scare rehash, recycled mish mosh of better and much scarier flicks before it. On the other hand Adam Wingard takes the overused Home Invasion Sub-Genre and makes it feel fun and fresh again. Dark Gorey Humor seems to be a favorite of mine.

That’s My Favorite Flicks of 2013 List! At least the Top 13. But what about the next 13? Hmmmmmm…

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