TOP 10 BEST MOVIES OF SUMMER 2012
This year, summer at the movies began with the release of “Marvel’s The Avengers” and culminated with the triumphant “The Dark Knight Rises.” But blockbuster films were not the only shining spots of our summer movie-watching. Smaller, independent cinema gave us the necessary escape from all the action-packed Hollywood films. Here’s my list of the Top 10 Best Movies of Summer 2012.
1. “The Dark Knight Rises” – Writer/director Christopher Nolan created a satisfying ending to his commercially and creatively successful “Batman” franchise. This one is a thinking man’s comic book movie that questions the gravity of greed. The ensemble cast is game to explore the psychological meaning of wearing masks and kudos must be given to Christian Bale who adds pathos to his redemptive Bruce Wayne/Batman persona.
2. “Moonrise Kingdom” – Wes Anderson returns with a powerful, whimsical movie about love, childhood, and authority figures. What could have been a predictable melodrama is turned into a fresh narrative that deliciously unfolds like a fairy tale.
3. “Marvel’s The Avengers” – We might as well call writer/director Joss Whedon a miracle worker for creating a thoroughly engaging comic book film that is at once entertaining and engrossing. Putting seven main superheroes together and making us care for all of them is not an easy task. Whedon also gets extra points for singlehandedly restoring our faith in The Hulk.
4. “Beasts of the Southern Wild” – The film forces you to use your imagination and see the world through the eyes of a little bayou girl named Hushpuppy wonderfully played by Quvenzhané Wallis. The characters and the story are told with indelible precision and I will not be surprised if the film and Wallis receive Oscar nominations.
5. “The Queen of Versailles” – If you’ve overdosed on the “Real Housewives” series, have no fear. The brilliant and thought-provoking documentary, “The Queen of Versailles,” will help you get back on track. The story of a billionaire couple and their quest to build a mansion styled after the Palace of Versailles is intriguing. But when our economy tanked, we see the American Dream implode right before our very eyes.
6. “ParaNorman” – This animated stop-motion tale is funny, creepy, and heartfelt. The story of a boy who is being bullied for seeing dead people is brought to life with eye-popping visuals that are created with equal heaps of sophistication and care.
7. “Bernie” – Jack Black gives the performance of his career as Bernie, a mortician who kills his friend, a rich widow named Marjorie (Shirley Maclaine). Based on true events, Richard Linklater (“Dazed and Confused,” “Slacker,” “Before Sunrise”) dropped the melodrama and focused on giving us a character study about a beloved man who falls from grace.
8. “The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel” – This is a sweet film about a group of British retirees who decide to spend their retirement years in the supposedly restored Marigold Hotel in India. The topnotch cast lifts the predictable script and turns the film into a memorable experience.
9. “Brave” – The first Pixar movie featuring a female heroine is affecting and beautifully shot. It also has an intriguing storyline that is remarkably soulful and unpredictable. And for the first time, Pixar ditches the narrative arc of a father and son and replaces it with a mother and daughter angle to great effects. I say it’s about time!
10. “The Amazing Spider-Man” – Yes it’s a reboot of a familiar story that was told merely ten years ago, but Andrew Garfield as our friendly neighborhood Spider-Man and Emma Stone as his love interest created a palpable chemistry that you still remember months after watching the film. Director Marc Webb created his vision of “Spider-Man” that focuses on tangled relationships.
Robot & Frank
Madagascar 3: Europe’s Most Wanted
Madea’s Witness Protection
That’s My Boy
Country: United States
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