[05] Top 30 Personal Favorite Films [2010 - 2012]

5:24 PM Joseph Aberl 0 Comments

As I am nearing my 100th article, I have come to realize that I have been slacking off with my Top 30 list and so I need to stress myself to finish the list before I reach that number. Can you believe I promised this list as my 50th article and it became such a large project it splittered into six seperate parts, so I would not overstay my welcome and was a bit more flexible to truly figure out what my personal films were. So, once again without futher ado let us see which films from 2010 until 2012 managed to be my favorites.

The Vanishment of Haruhi Suzumiya
This film probably is on my list due to my personal love of the series “The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya”. When that series came out it had become quite popular and I can’t deny I only learned of the series through pure coincidence, as I was reading through a magazine that was talking about the series. When I was in the US I had just the right amount of money to purchase the entire series and actually got into a little fight with my father, who simply viewed Anime as nothing more than a cartoon and believed I was too old for it. Still, I stubbornly purchased the series and fell in love with it, as I just loved this mixture of reality and fiction. The show is very plot heavy, trying to explain all the bizarre happenings, but somehow it just clicked.

When I heard that they were making a film based on one of the most famous stories from the light novel series, I couldn’t wait to get my hands on it. Similar to my experiences with Scott Pilgrim vs. the World I had to rely on the fact that my grandparents live abroad as there was never an Austrian release date planned. Furthermore, the film wasn’t even going to be release din the US until more than a year after its Japanese release, which proved to be quite a frustrating wait. Yet when I finally got my hands on it, I fell in love with this film.

This film makes me cry every time I see it and I am not ashamed of that. As confusing as the ending is and even the film itself, it is the strongest tale told in the franchise and not only because it sadly is the last installment of the anime series. Erik Sartie’s GymnopĂ©die No. 1 is my personal favorite musical piece ever created and without this film I probably would not love it as much as I do. What truly pushes this film for me is not how it connects to the series, but more how it changes a character and proves that no matter what time, no matter what world or dimension we live in, some bonds are simply stronger than anyone can imagine. 

After being a bit more serious I have to confess that Detention is probably the most bizarre film I have ever seen, even stranger than some indie productions I have watched. Probably my fascination of this film comes from the fact that I have such a hard time defining it, it is a horror film, a time travel and science fiction film, it is a high school drama, a romance film, a spoof or parody and many more elements in here. With all of that I have no idea how I can state this sentence, but it just works so incredibly well.

Not only the bizarre way the story is told, but the characters are just fascinating parodies of classic High School depiction in the modern age. The film works well by painting a picture of today’s teenage life in the US and that of the 80s. Oh boy, do they love the 80s in this film, as the reference are before my time, but things I certainly know from parents and their stories. It is really funny seeing how it tells its stories and kind of pays tribute to those times when things simply seemed “easy” or you never truly had that much to worry about, well except for a killer on the loose.

May I also commend the fact that the effects team behind this film really worked hard and you can see it. The pacing is incredibly fast and there are some fantastic moments that you only really realize are important when you’ve seen the film at least two or three times. I have seen it multiple times by now and still manage to uncover something I thought I already understood a few viewings back. It simply is a film I can always throw in to have a great time while also enjoying a fantastic film.

The Intouchables
Here is another foreign film in my list, but this time a French depiction of a real life story. Probably my personal favorite adaption of a real-life event or story showcasing some fantastic acting by Omar Sy, who would actually grow his filmography thanks to this film, and François Cluzet, who truly is incredible by barely moving at all. This film manages to do something not many can, it balances its drama with its comedy very well and each character has his very own story arc, no matter how small a role it is. It is another one of those films I just cannot get tired of and is even a better experience to watch with friends.

There is also something I absolutely adore of French filmmaking, and it probably is their use of music, especially piano. This film utilizes music in a very interesting and narrative way, as it showcases how people not only see music, but also how our tastes are strongly affected by our upbringing. It’s these small touches that truly make the difference in my opinion to why this film is on the list, it simply is a wonderful experience that even in its first few minutes grips you into its world. There really isn’t much more I can say about this film except go watch it.

2012 – Wreck-It Ralph
I am certainly a kid who grew up with video games, as my first console was a Nintendo 64 that I got from my mother and my father bought me the GameCube back in the day. Ironically my very first game was Sonic the Hedgehog 2, as my father and I borrowed a classic Sega Genesis console at a Blockbuster. Yeah, it’s already been a while since then, but it is a memory that always stuck with me. Especially as a kid I actually enjoyed watching the Super Mario Bros. film, even though I now realize it isn’t great, but I confess is a guilty pleasure. So, how else would I react if Disney, a company I also very fondly grew up with, actually were creating a film focused on video game characters? My mind was blown.

Wreck-It Ralph probably has the most heart of any Disney film and that is certainly saying a lot. The idea of focusing the story on a villain was brilliant and Ralph just breaks your heart, as he his stuck to a destiny he himself didn’t choose. A great way of letting us look at the other side of the classic Disney problem, but John C. Reilly is just perfect casting. You understand how he feels and you want him to succeed, to get that medal and prove that he isn’t a bad guy, just misunderstood.

Also, King Candy is just a lot of fun and even if you can see the twist coming from a mile away, it still works very effectively. The twist actually is very important to the lore of the universe these video game characters live in, so I believe the twist is an important one. Also, these characters are not only great representations of video games over the years, but also are just likeable character in their own right! You don’t need to know anything about video games to love this film, but seeing some classic characters in the background is just the icing on an already delicious cake.

Oh lord, this could be a controversial decision, but one I just cannot deny. I grew up with Family Guy and while I do believe the recent entries in the franchise aren’t truly what the show once was, I have a soft spot for this type of humor, because it is exactly the type of humor my family has. We are a very strange bunch of people, but boy do we enjoy our dark humor. Ted is the film that felt the most like the original Family Guy run and at the same time was a very great twist on a R-rated buddy comedy. Ted is a fantastic character and you have too love the fact that he is a washed up celebrity, who as a stuffed teddy bear doesn’t know exactly where his place is beside being with his best friend.

Yet here you have a story of two friends facing change, something we all have to face at one point in our life. As much as the humor is probably the greatest part of the film, I do believe it teaches quite an important lesson that I myself was learning at that time while I was in college. You are growing up and things are changing around you, so having your best friend even if you are slowly heading into different directions is something we sadly have to face. I guess this film came at the perfect time for me, as it was a lesson I had to learn and it taught this in the funniest way possible by pretty much pissing off everyone they could. This film is my favorite R-rated comedy and is much more memorable to me than Hungover, not because of the talking teddy bear, but because no matter how much of a douche these characters were, I still liked them or understood why they made the decisions they did.