Joe Swanberg Ranks 'All Is Lost,' 'Pain & Gain,' 'Short Term 12' & 'The Spectacular Now' In Best Films Of 2013 List

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by Kevin Jagernauth
December 19, 2013 3:39 PM
1 Comment
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Okay, time to wash out the bitter taste from Rex Reed's Worst Films Of 2013 list and get back to the good stuff. The latest person to weigh in with their thoughts on the year in movies is prolific and passionate filmmaker Joe Swanberg. Even though he dropped two movies in 2013—"Drinking Buddies" and "All The Lights In The Sky"—with another one headed to Sundance ("Happy Christmas"), he still managed to get in enough movie-watching to put together a list of his faves in 2013 (though he adds he hasn't seen many of the awards season-type movies).

"This list should be taken with a grain of salt and with the knowledge that it's within the range of the limited number of movies I've seen this year." he told Esquire, "But these are the ones I really loved. With all of them, I walked in thinking I knew what to expect, and I came out with a really different opinion. That resulted in all my best theatrical experiences this year — thinking I was going to get one thing and then getting something else."

So, what will you see below? That the usually indie-identified Swanberg has no problem with studio fare with both "The Conjuring" and "Pain & Gain" making the list. Of course, independent works factor highly with "Computer Chess" and "A Teacher" in there along with "Short Term 12" and "The Spectacular Now." As for his number one choice? You likely haven't heard of it but Swanberg shares with Esquire how it crossed his path and why it resonated (and he has comments for all the entries, so be sure to click over there). 

Joe Swanberg's Top 10 Films Of 2013
10. All Is Lost
9. Saturday Morning Mystery
8. Computer Chess
7. The Spectacular Now
6. A Teacher
5. Blackfish
4. Short Term 12
3. Pain & Gain
2. The Conjuring
1. Tiger Tail In Blue
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1 Comment

  • Jeb | December 20, 2013 1:13 PMReply

    I think Pain and Gain would be on more critic lists if Michael Bay's name wasn't on it.

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