My top 10 movies released/seen in 2013

by JuguAbraham | created - 13 Dec 2013 | updated - 21 Jun 2020 | Public
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1. Still Life (I) (2013)

TV-14 | 92 min | Drama

45 Metascore

A council case worker looks for the relatives of those found dead and alone.

Director: Uberto Pasolini | Stars: Eddie Marsan, Joanne Froggatt, Karen Drury, Andrew Buchan

Votes: 8,153

This film clearly makes a case for a resurgent cinema in the UK after a long while. Director Uberto Pasolini's film (UK/Italy) can truly be savored only if the viewer stays with the movie to the final scene. Four awards at Venice festival, Best film at Reykjavik Film festival, Best film at Abu Dhabi Film festival. The film has great acting, music, direction, photography and editing. My review is at

2. The Quispe Girls (2013)

TV-14 | 83 min | Drama

The story of the sisters: Justa, Lucía and Luciana Quispe, shepherds in the Chilean highlands who lead a solitary life.

Director: Sebastián Sepúlveda | Stars: Alfredo Castro, Digna Quispe, Catalina Saavedra, Francisca Gavilán

Votes: 106

A superb political debut film from Chile directed by Sebastián Sepúlveda (Chile/France/Argentina) that skirts direct show of political violence and rape and yet suggests it all to the perceptive viewer. Lovely performances and photography. Won the Fedora award for best cinematography at Venice film festival. My review is at

3. The Past (2013)

PG-13 | 130 min | Drama, Mystery

85 Metascore

An Iranian man deserts his French wife and her two children to return to his homeland. Meanwhile, his wife starts up a new relationship, a reality her husband confronts upon his wife's request for a divorce.

Director: Asghar Farhadi | Stars: Bérénice Bejo, Tahar Rahim, Ali Mosaffa, Pauline Burlet

Votes: 48,925 | Gross: $1.33M

Offering the flipside of Farhadi’s ‘A Separation’ with some parallels to Ray’s ‘Charulata.’ My review is at

4. Tangerines (2013)

Not Rated | 87 min | Drama, War

73 Metascore

In 1992, war rages in Abkhazia, a breakaway region of Georgia. An Estonian man Ivo has decided to stay behind and harvest his crops of tangerines. In a bloody conflict at his door, a wounded man is left behind, and Ivo takes him in.

Director: Zaza Urushadze | Stars: Lembit Ulfsak, Elmo Nüganen, Giorgi Nakashidze, Misha Meskhi

Votes: 46,162 | Gross: $0.14M

An uplifting and sensitive film on love and hate between communities/nations. My review is at

5. To the Wonder (2012)

R | 112 min | Drama, Romance

58 Metascore

After falling in love in Paris, Marina and Neil come to Oklahoma, where problems arise. Their church's Spanish-born pastor struggles with his faith, while Neil encounters a woman from his childhood.

Director: Terrence Malick | Stars: Ben Affleck, Olga Kurylenko, Javier Bardem, Rachel McAdams

Votes: 28,944 | Gross: $0.59M

Wonder of natural beauty set off against human beings' perception of divine love is the subject of this Terrence Malick film. The film compares and contrasts divine love with the love of spouses. My review is at

6. The Great Beauty (2013)

Not Rated | 141 min | Drama

86 Metascore

Jep Gambardella has seduced his way through the lavish nightlife of Rome for decades, but after his 65th birthday and a shock from the past, Jep looks past the nightclubs and parties to find a timeless landscape of absurd, exquisite beauty.

Director: Paolo Sorrentino | Stars: Toni Servillo, Carlo Verdone, Sabrina Ferilli, Carlo Buccirosso

Votes: 90,404 | Gross: $2.85M

Italian director Paolo Sorrentino's film (Italy/France) that delves into night lives of Rome's rich and famous and their ability to drop lines of philosophy and world literature in a dilettantish manner, captured against the rich historical, cultural and architectural heritage of the city. And there is brilliant use of music and camera to match. It ought to have won the top award at Cannes. My review is at

7. Child's Pose (2013)

Not Rated | 112 min | Drama

77 Metascore

After the terrible news of a fatal car accident involving her son, a desperate mother will do anything in her power to set her child free.

Director: Cãlin Peter Netzer | Stars: Luminita Gheorghiu, Bogdan Dumitrache, Natasa Raab, Ilinca Goia

Votes: 8,472 | Gross: $0.09M

Romanian director Calin Peter Netzer's (Romania) lovely study on a mother's over-zealous care for a grown-up son under unusual circumstances and the consequences. Also a social study of modern Romania. Golden Bear and FIPRESCI award winner at Berlin festival, My review is at

8. The Hunt (2012)

R | 115 min | Drama

77 Metascore

A teacher lives a lonely life, all the while struggling over his son's custody. His life slowly gets better as he finds love and receives good news from his son, but his new luck is about to be brutally shattered by an innocent little lie.

Director: Thomas Vinterberg | Stars: Mads Mikkelsen, Thomas Bo Larsen, Annika Wedderkopp, Lasse Fogelstrøm

Votes: 324,695 | Gross: $0.69M

A thought-provoking subject with an even more thought-provoking final scene. My review is at

9. Short Term 12 (2013)

R | 96 min | Drama

82 Metascore

A 20-something supervising staff member of a residential treatment facility navigates the troubled waters of that world alongside her co-worker and longtime boyfriend.

Director: Destin Daniel Cretton | Stars: Brie Larson, Frantz Turner, John Gallagher Jr., Kaitlyn Dever

Votes: 87,651 | Gross: $1.01M

An independent US film from director Destin Cretton (USA) that is endearing in its laudable purpose of helping troubled youngsters. Best Actress award, Prize of the Ecumenical Jury and two other honors at Locarno festival, Audience awards at Athens and Valladolid festivals, Grand Jury prize and audience award at South by Southwest (SxSW) festival.

10. Harmony Lessons (2013)

120 min | Drama

Lonely Kazakh teenager Aslan is bullied at his new school. He prepares himself for a bloody revenge on the school bully Bolat.

Director: Emir Baigazin | Stars: Timur Aidarbekov, Aslan Anarbayev, Mukhtar Andassov, Anelya Adilbekova

Votes: 941

Kazhak director Emir Baigazin (Kazakhstan/Germany/France) makes a film on the travails of young school-kids in Kazhakastan and how they adapt to very trying circumstances, not unlike fauna around us. Silver Bear for cinematography and "Berliner Morgenpost" awards at Berlin festival, International jury and Critics' awards at São Paulo festival, Best new narrative director at Tribeca festival, NETPAC award at Warsaw festival.

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