Instinct's Top 10 Favorite Movies Of 2013!
As we finalize our resolutions for 2014 that don’t begin with cross and end with fit (not enough time to cruise with that workout!), we're searching for ideas, launching points, anything we can grab onto to improve ourselves throughout the rest of this new year. Though those efforts are certainly noble, what we really love about this end of year-transition time is looking back at the past year to identify how our lives were actually improved through the work, passion and creativity of others. As members of Instinct’s editorial team, we look forward each and every year to cutting out the chaff and celebrating the diamonds that shined brightly throughout the past year. The bountiful and landmark year of 2013 certainly carved out our work for us, but these gems stood out above the rest as Instinct Magazine’s Top Favorites!
The Great Gatsby
We've long been fans of Baz Luhrmann, but the seductive opulence commingling with the best soundtrack of the year in The Great Gatsby catapulted the film to our favorite of the Aussie director's entire repertoire. And that's saying something. (Jonathan Higbee)
There were a lot of heavy, difficult and MAGNIFICENT films to watch in 2013, but none quite as affecting as Blackfish. The documentary, which provides an inside look at the treatment of highly-intelligent orcas according to former SeaWorld trainers, is an Oscar shoe-in for Best Documentary, and a must-see for anyone who's ever loved a fellow mammal. (JH)
Noah Baumbach, another consistent director we always enjoy, gave us plenty of food for thought in 2013 with Frances Ha. The black and white treatment gives off an appropriate amount of pretense in this coming-of-age story about 20-something dancer Frances (as well as a coming of age-story about Brooklyn that peers deeper into the borough than any episode of Girls), but Noah and star/co-writer Greta Gerwig's smart, punchy script add plenty of color. (JH)
Behind the Candelabra
"Extravaganza" has found a new dictionary entry in HBO's Behind The Candelabra. Feathered wigs, pre-Botox era cosmetic surgery and Matt Damon in a Speedo were enough to have our viewing party attendees on the edge of our DWR sectional for the entire two hours. (JH)
Philomena had us at Judi Dench and Steve Coogan but kept us due to the amount of weight we were losing directly from our eyes. If you haven't yet seen it, invest in industrial-strength tissues and sit down to watch as Philomena (Judi in a surefire Oscar nomination) searches for her long lost son. Don't say we didn't warn you. (JH)
Who knew Jane Austen could be so funny?! Well, maybe not Jane herself, but the world built around her fictitious amusement park and its cast of characters is hilarious (though anything with Jennifer Coolidge usually is). Austenland charmed the hell out of us this year and sent us on a hunt for our own Mr. Darcy…or sexy stable boy. (Jeff Katz)
We were worried the entire film was given away in that captivating trailer that started showing in, what, 2002, it seems like? Boy were we wrong. Sandra Bullock continues her streak of wowing us in Gravity, while George Clooney adds some nice eye candy. The third star of the film, Alfonso Cuarón's CGI direction, is breathtaking as well. (JH)
Given the totally suspicious R-rating G.B.F. was slapped with, we were expecting a raunchy film peppered with f-bombs and eye-roll worthy gay sex punchlines. What we got instead was much better: a sassy, feel-good film we wish had been around when we were struggling gay teens. (JH)
Dallas Buyer's Club
Dallas Buyers Club may be getting lots of deserved attention for two noteworthy performances, but let’s not overlook the story itself. DBC highlights a very real and all-too-often overlooked chapter in the AIDS epidemic, when people fought to live. Yes, Jared Leto is extraordinary and deserves every award that will surely come his way. But to have a major motion picture giving this story some high-profile attention, well, that’s something to applaud. (JK)
The reach and impact that Shane Bitney Crone’s story had has been nothing short of incredible, and that’s in no small part due to Bridegroom. The documentary had buzz while still in production, thanks to a record-breaking crowdfunding campaign and some great media attention (including Shane’s place in our 2012 Leading Men issue). But once Oprah and Netflix got on board—coupled with this amazing year in gay rights—2013 clearly belonged to Bridegroom. (JK)
That's it for our Top Favorites of 2013, Instincters! What do you think of our selection for best movies of the year?! Sound off in the comments!