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Best Films of 2012

Fri, Dec 28, 2012

<p> This Is Not a Film (Jafar Panahi, Mojtaba Mirtahmasb, 2011) </p>
This Is Not a Film (Jafar Panahi, Mojtaba Mirtahmasb, 2011) Image courtesy of Palisades Tartan

Even we can’t resist a best-of list. Members of our Film/Video Department put together their lists of favorite films, performances, and Wex screenings from the past year and you can see the results below. A note: these are films that screened in Columbus in the calendar year 2012, which is why you may see a few titles from 2011.

Want to share your best-of list or favorite Wex film event of 2012? Head to our Film/Video Facebook page and post.

Dave Filipi, Director of Film/Video

Top 10 Films (Dave would like to note that he has yet to see Holy Motors and Django Unchained)

  1. This is Not a Film (Jafar Panahi)
  2. The Master (Paul Thomas Anderson)
  3. Margaret (Kenneth Lonergan)
  4. Cloud Atlas (Tom Tykwer, Andy Wachowski, and Lana Wachowski)
  5. Alps (Giorgos Lanthimos)
  6. The Loneliest Planet (Julia Loktev)
  7. Once Upon a Time in Anatolia (Nuri Bilge Ceylan)
  8. Bernie (Richard Linklater)
  9. It’s Such a Beautiful Day (Don Hertzfeldt)
  10. A Separation (Asghar Fahadi)

Top Home Video Releases (in alphabetical order):

  • Jean Gremillon During the Occupation (Criterion Collection/Eclipse)
  • The Most Dangerous Game (1932) (Flicker Alley)
  • Pearls of the Czech New Wave (Criterion Collection/Eclipse)
  • Pier Paolo Pasolini: Trilogy of Life (Criterion Collection)
  • The Turin Horse (2011) (Cinema Guild)
  • This is Cinerama (1952) (Flicker Alley)
  • UPA: The Jolly Frolics Collection (TCM)

Top Repertory Film Events at the Wex

  • Castles in the Sky: Miyazaki, Takahata, and the Masters of Studio Ghibli: a selection of work from this legendary animation studio screened in mostly new 35mm prints this November and December.
  • West Side Story (Robert Wise & Jerome Robbins, 1961): screened in 70mm, April
  • UCLA Festival of Preservation: February series highlighted by screening of Come Back to the Five and Dime Jimmy Dean, Jimmy Dean (Robert Altman, 1982) followed by a Q&A with Ed Graczyk, central Ohio-based author of the original play.
  • The Guns of Navarone (J. Lee Thompson, 1961): our first digitally projected film, screened in 4K
  • The Notorious Jack Smith – Three nights of Jack Smith films in new prints from the Filmmakers Coop, screened during our Cinema 614 series in June
  • The Shirley Clarke Project – screenings of The Connection (1961) and Ornette: Made in America (1985), part of Milestone Films ongoing project to restore the work of Shirley Clarke
  • Santo the Silver Mask vs. the Martian Invasion (Alberto B. Crevenna, 1966), in a beautiful 35mm print

Chris Stults, Associate Curator, Film/Video

Top 10 Films

  1. House of Pleasures (Bertrand Bonello)
  2. The Biscuit Films (Luther Price)
  3. Margaret (Kenneth Lonergan)
  4. Neighboring Sounds (Kleber Mendonça Filho)
  5. Holy Motors (Leos Carax)
  6. This Is Not a Film (Jafar Panahi)
  7. Return (Liza Johnson)
  8. Bronze revirado (Pablo Lobato)
  9. The Deep Blue Sea (Terence Davies)
  10. Haywire (Steven Soderbergh)

Favorite Actresses: Linda Cardellini (Return), Anna Paquin (Margaret), Rachel Weisz (The Deep Blue Sea)

Favorite Actors: Jack Black (Bernie), Denis Lavant (Holy Motors), Denzel Washington (Flight)

Favorite Supporting Actresses: Rosemary DeWitt (Your Sister’s Sister), Sarina Farhadi (A Separation), Céline Sallette (House of Pleasures)

Favorite Supporting Actors: James Gandolfini (Killing Them Softly), Matthew McConaughey (Bernie & Magic Mike), Ezra Miller (The Perks of Being a Wallflower)

Favorite Scenes: “Nights in White Satin” (House of Pleasures), “Intermission” (Holy Motors), and “Man in the Mirror” (Wanderlust)

Mike Olenick, Video Editor in the Film/Video Studio Program

Top 10 (in alphabetical order. Includes new releases and re-releases)

  • Cosmopolis (David Cronenberg)
  • Holy Motors (Leos Carax)
  • House of Pleasures (Bertrand Bonello)
  • Margaret (Kenneth Lonergan)
  • Palaces of Pity (Daniel Schmidt, Gabriel Abrantes – screened at Ann Arbor Film Festival)
  • Possession (Andrzej Zulawski, 1981–new print)
  • Premium Rush (David Koepp)
  • Wanda (Barbara Loden, 1970–restored print)


  • Atman (Toshio Matsumoto, 1975 – screened at Ann Arbor Film Festival)
  • Bleu Shut (Robert Nelson, 1970 – screened at Ann Arbor Film Festival)

Justin Lintelman, Film/Video Program Assistant

Top 5 Films

  1. Beauty is Embarrassing (Neil Berkeley)
  2. The Dark Knight Rises (Christopher Nolan)
  3. Moonrise Kingdom (Wes Anderson)
  4. Bernie (Richard Linklater)
  5. Under African Skies (Joe Berlinger)

Favorite Wexner Center screenings

One of the best things about the Wexner Center, for me, is to get the chance to see classic films, that won’t show anywhere else in Columbus, in a proper format (not DVD). I saw these ten for the first time in 2012 at the Wexner Center:

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