You’ve no doubt heard about my meticulous (albeit high-strung and some-would-say-pointless) documenting of every film I’ve watched since the summer of 2005. If you haven’t, you can bring yourself quickly up to speed here and here, where you can read the 2005 and 2006 lists, respectively.
2013 was no exception and today I bring you a slightly abbreviated list detailing the best films of 2013. I’m not simply throwing in my two cents relative to what was best, I’m presenting you with the best. Ask anyone. Especially me.
In a somewhat unusual turn of events, this year’s list features quite a few documentaries. I mostly attribute this to the fact that the Winnipeg Cinematheque (that cosy, warm film haven in The Exchange) frequently screens documentaries and showcased several excellent ones this year.
After much (aka a few minutes’) deliberation, I’ve presented the films in alphabetical order. Initially, I attempted to categorise them traditionally with some sort of countdown to the absolute best of the year. This proved to be difficult, not to mention annoying. If you must know, however, “Amour” was this year’s best. I’ll leave it to my fellow comrades to wade through the rest of the selections and categorise their value.
One last disclaimer: the films presented here are those I watched in 2013, not necessarily those that were released in 2013. If you have any queries about the list or wish for personal recommendations (“What should we watch for date night?”), feel free to ask away in the comments below. Enjoy.
Film Title | Release Date | Country of Origin | Director
5 Broken Cameras | 2011 | PALESTINE | Emad Burnat, Guy Davidi
12 Years a Slave | 2013 | USA | Steve McQueen
A Late Quartet | 2012 | USA | Yaron Zilberman
Amour | 2012 | FRANCE | Michael Haneke
Beyond the Hills | 2012 | ROMANIA | Cristian Mungiu
Blackfish | 2013 | USA | Gabriela Cowperthwaite
Blue Jasmine | 2013 | USA | Woody Allen
Charles Bradley: Soul of America | 2012 | USA | Poull Brien
Django Unchained | 2012 | USA | Quentin Tarantino
Enough Said | 2013 | USA | Nicole Holofcener
Gravity | 2013 | USA | Alfonso Cuarón
The Grandmaster | 2013 | HONG KONG | Wong Kar Wai
Jiro Dreams of Sushi | 2011 | USA | David Gelb
Mud | 2012 | USA | Jeff Nichols
Prisoners | 2013 | USA | Denis Villeneuve
Searching for Sugar Man | 2012 | SWEDEN | Malik Bendjelloul
The Hunt | 2012 | DENMARK | Thomas Vinterberg
The Imposter | 2012 | UK | Bart Layton
The Impossible | 2012 | SPAIN | J.A. Bayona
This Must Be the Place | 2011 | ITALY | Paolo Sorrentino
The Waiting Room | 2012 | USA | Peter Nicks
Zero Dark Thirty | 2012 | USA | Kathryn Bigelow