40 Best Films

04 Jan

The 40 Best Films I Reviewed In 2012

I reviewed over 200 films in 2012, and rather than say what was the best and second best and so forth – denominations which have no meaning to me nor maybe to you either – I thought I would list all those I felt possessed various kinds of merits.

Some of them came out in 2012. Some, as you can see, hale from years past, although not past my past, since I am contemporary with all but one of them, Waterloo Bridge of 1931.

The main focus of these reviews is the acting. That’s what fascinates me, and that’s how I aspire to be useful to you. I like exploring that craft. In the process, I hope we both may benefit.

Some of these movie reviews are more about a particular actor and what that actor’s quality and craft might be. I mean, who has ever heard of Big Brown Eyes of 1936, but you might want to read there about Cary Grant as an actor. Besides, both he and the film are quite entertaining.

This year I wrote a series of reviews of Bette Davis films, and in doing so had a good deal to say about her craft, too, and what happened to it. But I here included only one, In This Our Life. If you want to know about my notions of Davis’s development as an actor, you can go back and look her up in particular pictures on .

This was also the year I wrote The George Stevens Seminar, because he seems important, momentous, and moving. None of that seminar is on this list, although each film is associated with a section of it, but some of the films he made are reviewed here, so be sure not to miss Shane and A Place In The Sun and The More The Merrier.

I also began The Guy Pierce Papers. But these are a series of reviews of this fine actor’s films, a series which shall continue over the years, as I bring in his films for you. Talking about a single actor over time is helpful to me to articulate what I can about The Actors Craft. Some of it is hunches. Some of it I know from experience as an actor. Some of it is as plain as the nose on your face.

Guy Pierce’s work is worth dwelling upon, and I hope you learn something about the rubric of the craft by reading about him. To find him and his pictures, just go to the index on the right of the blog.

This month, I am going to give you brief precis of these pictures, maybe five at a time, so you can figure out for yourself if you might fancy them.

They are all available for free from your public library. Netflix has most of them, too.

By the way, on the blog site, at the right top. is a place for DONATIONS. If you read these reviews and are helped and entertained and enlightened by them, do you think you could find your way to droop in a sum? – no amount too small, none too large.

Thank you.

~ ~ ~

A Late Quartet – 2012

A Place In The Sun – 1951

A Private Function – 1984

A Separation – 2011

Air Force – 1943

Amazing Adventure – 1937

Argo – 2012

Autumn Reunion – 2007

Big Brown Eyes – 1936

Blackbeard, The Pirate – 1952

Buck – 2011

Coriolanus – 2012

Dark Command – 1940

Diary Of A Mad Black Woman – 2005

Elegy – 2008

End Of Watch – 2012

Enemies, A Love Story – 1989

Flight – 2012

Frozen River – 2008

Gunga Din – 1939

Hedwig And The Angry Inch – 2001

I Remember Mama – 1948

In This Our Life – 1942

Killing Them Softly – 2012

Lincoln – 2012

Lock, Stock, And Two Smoking Barrels –1989

Lockout – 2012

Marly And Me – 2008

Objective Burma – 1945

Old Joy – 2007

Penny Serenade – 1941

People Will Talk – 194

Roadhouse – 1948

Rock Of Ages – 2012

Seven Men From Now – 1956

Shortbus – 2006

Snatch – 2000

State Of The Union – 1948

Swimming To Cambodia – 1987

Swing Time – 1936

Talk To Me – 2007

Thank You For Smoking – 2006

The Artist – 2011

The Beasts Of The Southern Wild – 2012

The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel – 2012

The Color Of Paradise – 2000

The Imaginarium Of Doctor Parnassus – 2009

The Iron Lady ­– 2011

The Ladykillers – 1955

The Last Station – 2010

The Life Of Pi – 2012

The Master – 2012

The More The Merrier – 1943

The Roaring Twenties – 1939

The Talk Of The Town – 1942

The Tall Men – 1955

The Wind Will Carry Us –1999

Tinker, Taylor, Soldier, Spy – 2011

To Rome, With Love – 2012

Trouble With The Curve – 2012

Two-Lane Blacktop – 1971

Two Lovers – 2008

Waterloo Bridge – 1931

Wife vs. Secretary – 1936

Wings In The Dark – 1935

Woman Of The Year – 1942

Won’t Back Down – 2012

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