May 2013- Best & Worst

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Once again, this was a weak month for first-time viewings due to a combination of final exams and fatigue resulting from them. In the end, there were 12 of them and a few rewatches.

May saw the release of what was my most anticipated film of the year, Baz Luhrmann’s The Great Gatsby. It didn’t quite live up to my extremely-high expectations, but it was still an great cinema experience. Other highlights include Star Trek Into Darkness, which was as good as the previous film, the beautiful and thrilling Jack Reacher, and the surprisingly-fun Beautiful Creatures, which features one of the best performances of the year from Alden Ehrenreich. However, Jane Campion’s Top of the Lake, stands above the rest thanks to its intricate plot, very cinematic look and direction, and outstanding performances. It may not be technically a film, but I will consider it a huge 7-hour epic from the mind of a single cinematic mastermind. I also watched Ron Fricke’s Samsara, but I really can’t compare it to the other because it wouldn’t be fair to them.

So, since I only managed to see 12 films for the first time, I will only give you a top five this month, followed by some “awards.”

Top 5

  1. Top of the Lake (Jane Campion & Garth Davis, 2013)
  2. Star Trek Into Darkness (J.J. Abrams, 2013)
  3. The Great Gatsby (Baz Luhrmann, 2013)
  4. Jack Reacher (Christopher McQuarrie, 2012)
  5. Beautiful Creatures (Richard LaGravenese, 2013)

Very Special Mention: Samsara (Ron Fricke, 2013)

Best Re-watch: My Neighbor Totoro (Hayao Miyasaki, 1988)

Notable Disappointment: Network (Sydney Lumet, 1976)

Worst: Safe Haven (Lasse Halström, 2013)

Superlatives

Best Director: Jane Campion & Garth Davis, Top of the Lake

Best Actor: Alden Ehrenreich, Beautiful Creatures & Leonardo DiCaprio, The Great Gatsby

Best Actress: Elizabeth Moss, Top of the Lake

Best Supporting Actor: Peter Mullan, David Wenham, & Thomas M. Wright, Top of the Lake

Best Supporting Actress: Elizabeth Debicki, The Great Gatsby

Best Screenplay: Top of the Lake

Best Cinematography: Jack Reacher

Best Costume Design: The Great Gatsby

Best Production Design: The Great Gatsby

Best Music: The Great Gatsby

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