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Curio: Alexa's Favorite Film Moments of 2012

Alexa here with my own contribution to the year in review. Everyone seems to agree that 2012 was a great year in film, and many are dissing 2011 in the process. Was 2011 really that bad? I would argue no...but I digress.  This week is about honoring the films of last year, and we will hear from Seth MacFarlane's loud mouth on Thursday which will get the most attention in the coming weeks. So rather than add another best-of list to the heap, I thought I'd share instead my favorite film moments of 2012: my best cinematic experiences, old and new, best film celebrations, and generally the moments that reinvigorated my love of the medium.

10. Discovering the joys of reform school
After finding a musty promotional packet for So Young, So Bad at a thrift store in Georgia, I found myself down a juvenile delinquent rabbit hole, devouring many films in the reform school girl genre, including Reform School Girl (1957), Reform School Girls (1986), La residencia (The House That Screamed) (1969), and my personal favorite, Untamed Youth (1957). 

9. Drowning my Oscar sorrows in pie
Overall I was displeased with the Oscars last year, primarily because my favorite Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy was passed over in the few categories for which it was recognized. (Don't get me started on Gary Oldman's loss). So in the spirit of Minny from The Help, a transferred my anger into a pie that was all but annihilated by the end of the broadcast, yet without her secret ingredient.

Take This Waltz, Silver Linings Playbook and more... after the jump

8. Take This Waltz
My love of Sarah Polley knows no bounds, so perhaps that made me partial to her latest directorial effort, suffused as it was with romantic longing and golden light. I found myself watching it a number of times, swept up like Michelle Williams in the fantasy of new discovery.  Plus, now I really want to visit Toronto.


7. Mademoiselle (1969)
My top Netflix streaming discovery this year was this twisted little film by Tony Richardson wherein Jeanne Moreau, as a devilish schoolmarm, wreaks havoc on a small French town in the spirit of Heath Ledger's Joker. I particularly loved how its widescreen noir imagery framed Jeanne's madness.


6. Giancarlo Esposito in Night on Earth
When the Emmys rolled around this year, I was rooting so hard for Giancarlo Esposito to win for his turn as Gus on Breaking Bad that I spent the week up to the ceremony watching every performance of his I could find.  My rediscovery of the New York segment of Jim Jarmusch's Night on Earth made his loss (almost) palatable.

5. An Anchorman Anniversary
To honor my husband's love and fidelity...to Will Ferrell's 2004 film, I gifted this Ron Burgandy goblet (by Real Glass Act) to him on our anniversary weekend, along with a fine bottle in a sleeve by Slurred Logic. The wine, and the quotes, flowed freely, although perhaps scotch would have been the better choice.

4. Looper
Rian Johnson's kinetic powerhouse of a film has stayed with me in the months since I attended a screening, and not only for the angry patrons that exited the theater in a huff in front of me. It left me, and continues to leave me, at a loss for words. Zachary Johnson's painted tributes to his brother's film capture the magic. 

Alexa's Baby!

3. Halloween with Rosemary's Baby
Spending my favorite holiday curled up with the fantastic new Criterion of my favorite film, while pregnant and dressed as the film's protagonist, was worth all the puzzled looks I got while taking my daughter trick-or-treating earlier in the day. 

2. Silver Linings Playbook
My purest film pleasure of 2012, and not only to be able to see Robert DeNiro act again. It was, for me, like a modern Bringing Up Baby, a deft balancing act of silly and elegant.


1. My daughter and Nemo
My greatest pleasure this year was hearing my daughter quote Dory again and again ("just keep swimming!"), as she discovered her first film obsession in the Pixar classic.  I approve.

What were your most memorable moments -- older film related -- this year?

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Reader Comments (6)

"(...) there was a Hushpuppy & she lived with her daddy in the bathtub" get me everytime!

January 8, 2013 | Unregistered Commenterstjeans

Ms. Polley's delightful recounting of how she gently stalked Julie Christie until she agreed to film Away From Her will make me always love her. And the final product was one of the best films of 2007. Someone needs to give Julie her Oscar now, please.

January 8, 2013 | Unregistered Commenterbrookesboy

OMG. Untamed Youth. Love it! Ha!

January 8, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterCharlieG

OMG that pie

January 8, 2013 | Unregistered Commentercaroline

I hated TAKE THIS WALTZ with a fiery passion, but the "Video Killed the Radio Star" scene was just magic.

January 8, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterGlenn

I second SLP, for all the noted reasons.

January 9, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterDaniel B

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