The Top 7 Best Movies of 2012…So Far

The best movies of 2012?! I don’t want to freak you out, but 2012 is almost 3/4 over. Wait, that’s pessimistic! 2012 has half-begun! Wait, that makes no sense.

Either way, you catch my drift. So I’m taking this opportunity to count down my seven favorite movies of the first half of 2012, hence this early Best Movies of 2012 list.

7. Chronicle
I claim to be sick of found footage, I claim to be sick of superheroes, then this movie comes along and it absolutely deserves a spot on this list of best movies. Don’t tell anyone, but when I went to bed the night after seeing “Chronicle” I dreamt that I, too, got magic space powers that let me whirl Flip cams around my head as I took flight and smashed up Seattle.

Best part: The moment you realize you’re watching an origin story of a super-villain not a superhero.

 6. Haywire
What if a drive-in exploitation picture were crafted by our most fastidious filmmaker? That’s kinda what “Haywire” is—a direct, action-packed flick that hums along to its own definition of perfection and it earns its spot on as one of the best movies of 2012 so far. Gina Carano wields the force of a Sherman tank, but is still feminine enough to fill out the Black Widow outfit.

Best part: This one move she does in a hallway after chasing a guy, jumping up on a wall before crashing down on him—straight out of a video game.

5. The Grey
About three nights a week I have nightmares about being in a plane crash and then stuck somewhere beyond rescue. “The Grey” took survival horror to the next level by balancing the emotional development of the characters with the physical violence. When you have great actors like this, it’s a bet that is going to work…and keep your audience tied up in knots.

Best part: Tree-jump.

4. The Cabin in the Woods
A love-letter to late night movie lovers, this whacked-out, paranoid, bloody comedy doubles-down on its own cleverness and wins big. Anyone who says you can’t mix genres clearly hasn’t watched this film and is missing out on one of the best movies of the year.

Best part: Waiting for those elevators to ding open tied with the white board.

3. The Avengers
Four years ago, Marvel’s head of production said there would be an Avengers movie and I thought, “well, he’s got to float those stories in the press to keep interest going.” Then it happened and I had to pinch myself. Its very existence was enough to make me grateful, but the fact that it was SOOOOO GOOD is just something of a miracle. Both in front of and behind the camera, it is a team-up of Earth’s Mightiest Heroes and not just a pop-culture phenomenon but actually one of the best movies of 2012.

Best part: It’s a movie of 100 best parts, but I love when Tony Stark zaps Bruce Banner to playfully check if he’ll Hulk-out. They’re best friends! Science friends!

2. Moonrise Kingdom
Everything Wes Anderson has ever done has been leading to this. It’s the most precise, mannered and art-directed movie that’s come along in quite some time, so if that in-camera preciousness irks you, this will make your head explode. If you are a fan (and I am) this is a gooey, syrupy delight from the first frame until the last. “Moonrise Kingdom” proves that you can be playful and fantastic while expressing deep sentiment at the same time.

1. The Dark Knight Rises
Big-time Hollywood filmmaking at its most massively accomplished, this last installment of Christopher Nolan's Batman trilogy makes everything in the rival Marvel universe look thoroughly silly and childish. Entirely enveloping and at times unnerving in a relevant way one would never have imagined, it’s a blockbuster by any standard. And it’s worthy of getting the title of Best Movie of 2012 (so far).

Best part: EVERYTHING!!!
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