You know that feeling? As the year has officially come to an end, a few fond memories of some wonderful films will always stay with you. Some films stood out with their serene performances while others were blessed with an intriguing story. The following list is a collection of my favorite, if not best, films from 2013. They make up the ultimate package any person will have a good time with.
Iron Man 3
I like to very much believe that Iron Man 3 is up until now the best movie from Marvel Studios (without considering Thor 2 that I haven’t seen). According to Box Office Mojo, it gets the number one spot for being the highest grossing movie of 2013. Now, that doesn’t necessarily mean it deserves a place on this list, but it most certainly does. With surprising twists and a slightly gloomier atmosphere, Iron Man 3 may not be any comic reader’s favorite, but it definitely is mine — and for the record, I’m more than glad I haven’t read the comics.
Fast and Furious 6
While Fast and Furious 6 is nothing more than a brainless action flick, it’s good to see the series maturing with every movie. The plot is nothing new to many of us, but nonetheless it has a likable story. I mean, who doesn’t love to scope babes and cars at the same time? Also, with Paul Walker passing away (may he rest in peace) and a new villain being introduced at the end of the movie, I’m looking forward to what the franchise has to offer in the near future. This movie absolutely promises a lot of exciting stuff yet to come.
The Great Gatsby
This is probably one of my most controversial picks, but it’s the truth: I really enjoyed watching Baz Luhrmann’s The Great Gatsby and I think it’s a sweet spot in the classic remakes category. I have read the novel by F. Scott Fitzgerald and even though this film won’t be appreciated by all literary purists, it’s an entertaining ride that speaks to a wider and younger audience (including myself). If you can’t stand it (and you’re about to puke) that I gave this film the number eight spot, please do read my in-depth review of it by clicking the image, count to ten, and then decide what to do — don’t forget to breathe.
Gravity is just perfection. The story is simple, but effective: a thrilling ride into getting lost in space. Alfonso Cuarón’s breathtaking 3D drama is something to be savored in IMAX only. I’m sure that many have praised this a lot better than me and it will without any doubt win something this upcoming award season. However, no words are enough to describe Gravity as it’s much more of a personal experience.
Man of Steel
This is not a totally original nor outstanding movie. In fact, Man of Steel felt like a rather odd experience thanks to Zack Snyder’s take on our hero from Kansas. However, it’s by far my most favorite movie starring a hero. The fights are more local and the destruction feels more present. That’s basically what counts for a good Superman remake and Snyder made it all come true to a satisfying degree.
The Hunger Games: Catching Fire
As I pointed out already in my review, what sets Catching Fire apart is not the story. Anyone could have read the books and left it there. It’s the acting that motivates why this movie turned out rather a huge enjoyable success by many. Not only Jennifer Lawrence’s tremendous portrayal of Katniss, the girl on fire, was one of the movie’s highlights, but the overall performances from the cast contributed greatly in a better understanding of the Dystopian context for those who weren’t familiar with the plot. For those who did know the story, it just got better and better.
12 Years A Slave
Without any doubt, this is the best picture of the year and deserves to be in anyone’s top 10 list. It’s not my number one favorite movie though, because it focuses on issues from the history of the United States which have been explored a lot of times already by films such as Lincoln and Django Unchained. Surely this film tells the same story from a different perspective and is injected with monstrous acts and dramatic archs. Don’t even get me started on the wonderful performances. 12 Years A Slave will earn that award / those awards — no big surprise there.
I was really lucky to watch this three months earlier than the international premiere date and I absolutely loved it. It has been nominated for 7 Golden Globes already — American Hustle is an interesting mix of cinematic arts and Hollywood entertainment and the cast did such a brilliant job altogether. This is a must see for any fan of David O. Russel’s earlier works.
Watching About Time from director Richard Curtis made me feel engaged with the lives of the characters and I totally enjoyed that. This is by no means the perfect movie, but it worked very well for me as my second favorite of the year. The comedy and drama with a bit of sci-fi created the ideal setting for a sentimental film that delivers an even more important message to its audience. Rachel McAdams, Domhnall Gleeson and Bill Nighy were as real as any other person — About Time defines a lot of us today.
Above anything else, Le Passé is my best and most favorite film of the year. Director Asghar Farhadi’s envisioned drama is not soapy and may look like his previous film A Separation a lot, but nevertheless it stays an interesting film to watch without the use of any visual effects nor action scenes. Moreover, Farhadi did not even use a soundtrack throughout the scenes because he wanted it to be as real as possible. All I can say is that it worked all too well. The performances were great, but what set this film apart was definitely the outstanding story: Le Passé is a masterpiece on its own and it deserves the number one spot for the best film of 2013.
Other honorable mentions: Mud, Dallas Buyers Club, Frozen, Rush, Nebraska.