Wednesday, December 19, 2012

The Annual Onslaught of Sameness

Yesterday, I commented on Twitter about the number of year-end lists I've seen that put Lincoln near the top, but then, in their blurb about it, seem to apologize for putting it there. I said that less because I wanted to comment on Lincoln than because of the insecurity I feel about my own tentative list (which I’ll share in due time). It has a lot in common with others, but also includes a few picks that might elicit a “Really? You picked that?” kind of response. Or maybe I’m just imaging the worst.

Whatever the case, I'm starting to feel differently. The more lists I see, the more I'm proud of my differences. The same three, four, or five titles are showing up again and again, often in the same spots. Which is fine—they’re good movies (although, I haven’t seen Zero Dark Thirty or Amour yet; I'm just assuming on those).

Still, I have to wonder: is everyone really of such a like mind? One of the whole reasons I look forward to lists each year is for the surprise of seeing something I hadn't heard of, or something I’d written off that another person saw in a very different light. But for yet another year in a row, I feel like we’re facing an onslaught of sameness. What about uniqueness of vision? Is critical opinion really as homogenized as this?

That’s why I admire Tasha Robinson’s list for The AV Club. I can’t say I agree with her number one pick, but what a move! And there are at least a couple of other titles here that had me thinking, either because I hadn't heard of them at all or because no one's mentioned them in a long while.

So anyway, for the sake of celebrating diversity, I decided to post her list below. And to see the rest of The AV Club’s lists, you're just a click away.

Tasha Robinson
1. The Avengers
2. Wreck-It Ralph
3. Zero Dark Thirty
4. Chasing Ice
5. I Wish
6. Where Do We Go Now?
7. The Master
8. Beasts Of The Southern Wild
9. The Secret World Of Arrietty
10. The Cabin In The Woods
11. Life Of Pi
12. The Rabbi’s Cat
13. Cloud Atlas
14. Haywire
15. Looper

1 comment:

  1. I agree, Andrew. I often don't agree with Tasha's takes on things, but I always value her voice — she's always articulate about her choices (especially on the AV Club podcast). I think I usually end up admiring a movie or book more after she reviews or explains it, especially if I didn't initially dig it.