Jordan M. Smith’s Top Ten Films of 2012: First-timer Helmers Rodney Ascher & Benh Zeitlin Crack Top 10 (Picks 10 to 6)

10. Beasts of the Southern Wild

Another film I sorely missed in Park City, but finally caught during its theatrical release, Benh Zeitlin’s full length debut is pure southern magic. Following directly in the stylistic footsteps of his splendidly original short, Glory At Sea, the film is about finding inner strength to overcome outrageous odds and conforming to a life almost predetermined for us. Zeitlin seems to reject these deliberations for his own enchanted aesthetic where fables and realities collide. It also doesn’t hurt to have Quvenzhané Wallis play Hushpuppy, the cute and righteous face that harbor’s a swelling, juvenile fervency that buttresses the whole picture. It will be very interesting to see where Zeitlin goes from here.

9. Prometheus

There were few films this year I was more excited for than this one. Ridiculous plot holes, broad characterizations, ridiculous old man make-up and all, this was still one of my favorites.
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