Let the glorious idiosyncrasies begin!
New York magazine’s David Edelstein throws down the gauntlet, or something. (in alphabetical order):
The Adventures of Tintin
Melancholy and madcap, Mike Mills’s inventive weave of past and present ushers you into the mind of its hero (a superb Ewan McGregor) as he agonizes over his emotional inheritance. As the dad who comes out of the closet at 75, Christopher Plummer is light and lithe, buoyed by his new life among the boys.
Ralph Fiennes stars and directs from John Logan’s canny script. Not definitive, but taut, brutal, and unsettling—Shakespeare’s surly warrior by way of The Hurt Locker.
Gainsbourg: A Heroic Life
Hell and Back Again
Into the Abyss
Werner Herzog’s second documentary of the year earns its comparison to In Cold Blood, depicting a sick, tragic ecosystem of senseless crime and uncomprehending capital punishment. In Texas, natch.
The view from the one percent, a lacerating business melodrama in which the bad guys win. With Kevin Spacey’s best performance in years and stellar work by Jeremy Irons, Zachary Quinto, Paul Bettany, Stanley Tucci, and even Demi Moore.
Mysteries of Lisbon
Raúl Ruiz’s final film (he died two weeks after its U.S. release) is a Dickensian epic with a dash of magic realism. You study it like a series of paintings—then realize, with a gasp, that it has hold of you like a fever dream.
Steven Spielberg’s World War I epic, which follows a horse from rural England to the bloody battlefields of Europe, is sometimes cornball and too self-consciously mythic, but his complex humanism—his view of men at their worst and best—shines through. It’s grim yet thrilling.