Submit Your
Comedy
List
The deadline for the Top Comedies of All Time list is coming up! Submit your ballot now, or read about it here

Captain Spaulding's Favorite Movies of 2013

→ in
Tools    





mirror
mirror

Captain Spaulding's
Favorite Movies of 2013


\/
\/
\/
\/
\/



"Um, surely you mean 2014, right, Captain? I mean, it's the end of the year. Nobody cares about 2013 anymore."



\/
\/
\/




People are compiling their best-of-the-year lists for 2014, but I believe in being thorough, and it generally takes me several months into the following year before I've seen the majority of films that I wanted to see. Since I live in a small town, I typically have to wait until movies are released on DVD & Blu-ray to see the most buzz-worthy films of the year. As of right now, for instance, I've only seen about 30 films from 2014, most of which aren't very good, compared to nearly 150 films released in 2013. I was hoping to compile this list at least three or four months ago and put a lot more work into it, writing full-length reviews about each film, but obviously that would take way too long. Hopefully next year I can get around to my favorite films of 2014 before New Year's Eve.

Some of these entries are technically 2012 films, but I say f**k technicalities. If a film first premiered in front of a hundred people at some random festival two years ago, but wasn't released in theaters until 2013 for regular moviegoers like myself and the rest of the world, then for the purposes of this list I'm including it as a 2013 release.

Now on with the unveiling!


__________________



#20) Elysium

Director: Neill Blomkamp
Starring: Matt Damon; Jodie Foster; Sharlto Copley


Despite generally positive reviews, I don't know a single person who liked Elysium. All my friends received it with a shrug and a "meh," but I enjoyed it quite a bit in the theater, and I enjoyed it even more when I re-watched it on DVD. The film's themes about immigration and health care are blatantly obvious, but compared to typically empty summer blockbusters, I give Elysium credit for having something to say while still delivering action and excitement, even if its message is too heavy-handed. I loved the Mad Max aesthetic of dystopian Earth with the dichotomy of Elysium's luxury. I thought the special effects were very impressive. The action scenes delivered. Sharlto Copley's over-the-top villainous performance was fun to watch. Sure, the romantic subplot is hackneyed, but I say that about almost every movie. I also appreciate Elysium's audacity to carry through with its intended ending, since so many films fail to bite the bullet when it comes to their hero's fate for fear of alienating a portion of the audience. Compared to District 9, one of the best science-fiction films of the new millennium, Elysium is a step down for director Neill Blomkamp, but if this had been a debut feature without heightened expectations, I think audiences would have enjoyed it much more than they did. Or maybe not. Maybe it's just one of those movies that oddly appeals to me and nobody else.

#19) Her

Director: Spike Jonze
Starring: Joaquin Phoenix; Scarlett Johansson; Amy Adams


Unlike most films on this list, I've only seen Her once, and my last viewing was nearly a year ago. Otherwise it would probably be a few spots higher. The premise of a man falling in love with an operating system doesn't sound like a very engaging film, but thanks to an intelligent, multi-layered script by Spike Jonze and a tender, touching performance by Joaquin Phoenix, Her works wonderfully. Scarlet Johansson's sultry voice is the perfect fit for Samantha. I quickly fell in love with her and never viewed her as a computer but as a living being with the unfortunate handicap of not having a body. Looking back on the film, it's easy to forget that Phoenix was essentially acting with himself, since his character's relationship with Samantha felt so tangible. As someone who has been in a long-distance relationship, I was able to relate to some of their struggles, especially when it comes to issues of intimacy. The script juggles numerous themes with expertise, the most obvious being our increasing inability to interact with others due to how plugged-in our society has become. I thought the idea of hiring someone to write your own personal love letters was both brilliant and damning; I'm sure Hallmark will introduce that department in the near future. The plot takes some twists and turns that are frightening in their implications, like when Samantha reveals that she and other OSes have banded together to give birth to a hyper-intelligent version of a dead philosopher. Her is touching, timely, thought-provoking and wholly original, while also providing audiences with a likely window to our future.




Master of My Domain
Never seen Elysium, despite having one of my favorite actor and actress I avoided it because it looked extremely generic. However judging from your write-up it looks decent.

Her is one of my favorite movies of 2013. One of the few films where a whole plot revolving around romance actually works for me, the originality of falling in love with an operating machine and Scarlett Johansson's super-sexy voice helped.



0 for two right now. Elysium looked silly and I did not see it. I saw Her and did not care for it. You have 18 more chances for rep.
#1 through #18: The Wolf of Wall Street




A whole year behind and thats all you got, two average movies?

Just kidding, looking forward to it Captain...but yeah, those are average.
__________________
Letterboxd



Captain Spaulding, this is so sad. You're ringing in the new year with a review of Her.



A whole year behind and thats all you got, two average movies?

Just kidding, looking forward to it Captain...but yeah, those are average.
I looked at your top ten for 2013. Seven of those made my own list.

Considering how much weight you put on characters, I'm a little surprised you don't like Her.



Captain Spaulding, this is so sad. You're ringing in the new year with a review of Her.
It's either that or cyber sex. Speaking of which . . . you busy?



It's either that or cyber sex. Speaking of which . . . you busy?
My tub's got a crack in it right now.



You know what better be on this list, don't you?
The only same-sex couple going down on each other in this thread will be me and SC.



The only same-sex couple going down on each other in this thread will be me and SC.



The only same-sex couple going down on each other in this thread will be me and SC.
The only thing I'm gonna be doing in this thread is scrolling down.



I looked at your top ten for 2013. Seven of those made my own list.

Considering how much weight you put on characters, I'm a little surprised you don't like Her.
I was shocked too, because of the hype and my history with Jonze. Maybe it was expectations. It probably deserves a re-watch from me at some point. I didn't hate it though, actually gave it a 3.5 and liked it better than Elysium for sure. I was just giving you a hard time. You can checkout my review if you want.



Not a fan of Elysium either. I saw it at the cinema when it came out. The way it uses music during the action sequences (which are very annoying by the way, thanks to the shaky cams) made it look like a very long trailer, rather than a film to me.

I rewatched Her the other day and realized that my feelings remain unchanged. There's good stuff in it but the second half of the film doesn't quite work for me for some reason. I'm not sure why.



I rewatched Her the other day and realized that my feelings remain unchanged. There's good stuff in it but the second half of the film doesn't quite work for me for some reason. I'm not sure why.
Could it have possibly been when the computer sent a woman to Joaquin Phoenix's apartment to pretend to be the computer having sex with him???