Saturday, November 30, 2013

2013 Sight and Sound's Critics Poll

I always hate the way Sight and Sound structures their year-end list, with all those equal signs in can be a bit confusing. But either way, each year they poll a wide swath of international critics to find what is the consensus for the year's best films. In an interesting twist, they have picked an upset choice this year with The Act of Killing, and an even bigger shock is that 12 Years a Slave ended up out of the top ten (tied for 14th to be exact). The rest of the list is populated with many foreign entries as always, but also includes some potential Oscar/Indie Spirit contenders including Frances Ha, Upstream Color, All is Lost, the aforementioned 12 Years a Slave, Blue Jasmine, and Inside Llewyn Davis. And in the number 2 spot is Gravity. This makes me wonder if us pundits are underestimating its critics award potential, being blinded by the 12 Years a Slave love. It may not end up mattering in the end, but it is worth noting as NBR and NYFCC are just a few days away. Enjoy the list below:

1. “The Act of Killing” (Joshua Oppenheimer)
2. “Gravity” (Alfonso Cuaron)
3. “Blue is the Warmest Color” (Abdellatif Kechiche)
4. “The Great Beauty” (Paolo Sorrentino)
5. “Frances Ha” (Noah Baumbach)
6. “A Touch of Sin” (Jia Zhang-ke)
=“Upstream Color” (Shane Carruth)
8. “The Selfish Giant” (Clio Barnard)
9. “Norte, the End of History” (Lav Diaz)
=”Stranger by the Lake” (Alain Guiraudie)
11. “Before Midnight” (Richard Linklater)
=”Stray Dogs” (Tsai Ming-liang)
13. “Leviathan” (Lucien Castaing and Verena Paravel)
14. ”All is Lost” (J.C. Chandor)
=”A Field in England” (Ben Wheatley)
=“12 Years a Slave” (Steve McQueen)
17. “Bastards” (Claire Denis)
=”Gloria” (Sebastian Lelio)
=”The Missing Picture” (Rithy Panh)
=”Story of My Death” (Albert Serra)
=”Under the Skin” (Jonathan Glazer)
22. “At Berkeley” (Frederick Wiseman)
=”Beyond the Hills” (Cristian Mungiu)
=”Blancanieves” (Pablo Berger) 
=”Blue Jasmine” (Woody Allen)
=”Django Unchained” (Quentin Tarantino)
=“Ida” (Pawel Pawlikowski)
=”Inside Llewyn Davis” (Joel and Ethan Coen)
=“It’s Such a Beautiful Day” (Don Hertzfeldt)
=”The Last of the Unjust” (Claude Lanzmann)

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