VIDEO: Top 10 Best and Worst Movies of 2013

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Cecil lists his favorite and least favorite films of 2013! FYI, the list of the ten best films comes first. This being Good Bad Flicks, it may be hard to tell.

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  • Muthsarah

    10. Prisoners – My #11. Out of 21, so it technically wouldn’t have made a Top or Bottom 10, but been the designated Honorable Mention. For both. How many movies do you watch each year, that you can come up with so many bad ones? Are you a weekly film critic? Or do you have THAT much money and time to burn that you can see so many movies that you could end up hating? Oh, also this was a Roger Deakins movie; I think that added a lot to an already pretty atmospheric movie. Made some of the difficult-to-watch scenes at least nice to look at in other respects.

    6. Escape Plan – My #9. I was grinning from ear-to-ear half the damn time (I didn’t realize until it was happening that this was the first time I’d ever seen Arnold on the big screen). What’s it gonna take for one of these movies to do well for a change? Hollywood isn’t gonna keep giving them more chances. I hope it, like Dredd, at least cleaned up on RedBox/streaming. Seems like the perfect thing to pick up on a rainy night when you just wanna watch something new, yet familiar, yet worthwhile.

    1. All is Lost – I was all set to make a comment about how seemingly narrow your list has seemed (nothing wrong about having a clear favorite genre, but almost everything was horror, action, or close). Then this. I guess I should start following your website if you cover a lot more than what I had assumed you usually did.

    HM. The World’s End – My #2. Pity. And I actually felt this year was pretty weak compared to last year. Then again, I didn’t see half your Top 10. Conjuring was my #4. First straight horror film I can recall genuinely loving. And Saoirse is pronounced “SUR-sha”.

    Worst: Didn’t see a single one of them. As I predicted the instant you led off with Movie 43. Almost saw Spring Breakers, though. Almost. There was a long drought in the spring, but I held on until Pain and Gain. Maybe I picked the better “trashy” film.

    • Cecil_Trachenburg

      Looking back on my list, I think there is a decent mix. The only thing missing is comedy and while I thought 2013 was a great year for movies, it was a lousy year for comedy.

      How many movies do I watch in a year? Not sure of an exact number but I’ll say, a bunch. I think one of the reasons I get to watch so many films is that I watch very little TV. Most of my movies I get through either Netflix, amazon, or the occasional trip to the theater. I don’t drink or smoke so I chalk the money I spend on movies as my “vice”.

      I can’t believe Escape Plan didn’t do better theatrically. It was what action movies should be! Not the crap that currently passes for action.

      I really liked The World’s End but I just didn’t feel as strongly about it as the others.

      Thanks about Saoirse. I was watching a video about her movie Hanna years ago and when they were talking about her, they called her “Say-orse” so I figured that was the right way. I discovered from you and a few others that was wrong. Shame I’ve been saying it wrong, she is probably my favorite young actress right now. No matter what she is in she brings an element of class.

      You were smart to not see any of the bad ones. I had to check them out in order to be fair.

      • Muthsarah

        Gonna see Saoirse in Grand Budapest Hotel? Given your Top 10, I’d LOVE to hear your take on a Wes Anderson film. :)

        EDIT: Or if that’s too much, SNL’s willing to meet you halfway:

        • Cecil_Trachenburg

          I really like (and sometimes love) Wes Anderson’s stuff so I’m sure this will be another winner.

  • Alexa

    Dude don’t even get me started on Man of Steel. All I can say is I wanted to like it, had some good moments, but it was a dull dirge of a film that tried to make Superman dark which doesn’t really work for him. Plus it doesn’t help that Snyder’s films tend to leave me feeling really cold, because the guy kind of forgets about putting heart and feeling into his films a lot of the time. My dislike comes from a mixture of personal preference and the film just not really hitting the mark on adapting the character correctly. Plus the screenplay and pacing, in my opinion, were really bad. Obviously not the worst superhero movie out there, but there was a lot to be desired.

    But yeah didn’t see a lot of movies last year, but I really enjoyed Wolf of Wall Street, Thor: Dark World and Dallas Buyers Club.

    • Cecil_Trachenburg

      While I thought they could have focused a tad less on Lois, I still thoroughly enjoyed Man of Steel. Superman Returns was such a mess, I was glad they decided to try something different.

      I’m sure Wolf of Wall Street is an incredibly well acted, and well directed film that will most likely deserve all the awards it is sure to win. However, much like mafia movies, it just doesn’t appeal to me.

      Thor 2 was good but I’m in the minority that liked the camp of the first one better.

      • CaptainCalvinCat

        With me it is quite different. I heard, that MoS would be pretty much without joy, saw, that it was made from the same people, who did the acclaimed, but disliked by me, Batman-Nolan-Movies and said: “Erm… yeah…. NOT gonna watch it.”
        Because I don’t need that joyless environment in my Superman-movies.

        However I watched A good day to die hard (Die hard 5) and said to a friend of mine: “Well – it really needs time, before it is starting, but then… I felt entertained. It might have lots and lots of logical problems, geographical problems etc, but… this is Die hard. We’re talking about a guy, who – in his first outing – went against a skyscraper full of terrorists and won.
        So – I don’t have a problem with the movie having problems.”

        • Cecil_Trachenburg

          It was just the way Die Hard presented itself. In the first one, he was
          fighting off the terrorists one by one and doing so very sneaky. Sure,
          it ramped up towards the end but that was all for dramatic tension.

          Hard 5 starts off with him nonchalantly driving a truck through Russia
          chasing a fully armored car that is shooting him with rocket launchers.
          It goes above and beyond any semblance of realism. (I like absurdity in
          my action movies but it felt like it was reaching way too far with this)

          • CaptainCalvinCat

            Actually him driving the truck through Moscow was, what sold me to this movie.
            Because before that, he was just in a taxi and talking to this russian guy and I thought “yaaaaaawwwwwn”….

            But the movie had parts in it, I didn’t like – for example that forced “Oh, I hate my dad”-thing, that McLanes son had going for him. Gnnnaaaagh. Honestly? Why do we most of the time have to have this “Oh, you were a lousy father!”-plot, when it comes to policemen and their children?

      • Alexa

        Again I wanted to like it, but like you with mafia films, I don’t really like Zack Snyder films. He’s great with his visuals, and he does a good job with casting, and I kind of liked Watchman and 300, but his films just feel like they’re missing something. They feel unfulfilling and imbalanced. Again everyone is different, and this is just my personal feelings when it comes to his films. But yeah with me I am in the small minority that liked Superman Returns. I can’t say that it was better than MoS, it has many problems, but it did feel truer to the character to a degree. And I am all for trying new things, but making Superman into a darker character just doesn’t seem right, plus the shaky cam and the boring color scheme didn’t do the film any favors.

        But seriously go watch Dallas Buyers Club great acting, especially from Jared Leto.

        • Cecil_Trachenburg

          I’m glad Leto continues to act, I really like that guy.

  • Jackie

    For Spring Breakers, THANK YOU. OH MY GOD.

  • TheRedWorm

    Spring Breakers isn’t a movie, it’s congealed failure.

    • Cecil_Trachenburg


      • E.Buzz Miller

        The worst part of it is it’s the kind of movie that thinks it’s subversive and making some comment on society, but it doesn’t have anything worth saying.

        • david f white

          Or anything that hasn’t been said a million times over!! The Doom Generation had more depth and meaning!!

  • Sergeant343

    Yeah, Harmony Korine is not everyone’s cup of tea, but somehow he has managed to get in bed with some of the top directors working today (Gus van Sant, Leos Crax, Werner Herzog, Michael Winterbottom), but if you think that is the worst film of the Decade, might I recommend the Birdemic films, Paranormal Movie, and inAPPropriate Comedy

    • Cecil_Trachenburg

      Birdemic 1-2 I can at least laugh at. I avoided inAPPropriate comedy because I figured if Movie 43 was horrendous, the knock off has to somehow be worse.

      • Sergeant343

        You cannot imagine how much worse.

        • Cecil_Trachenburg

          I will avoid like the plague.

  • Before watching: I wonder how much of this I will disagree with.

    After watching: I can’t believe how few of these I heard of.
    10) This is my number 1.
    9)-(7) I will now watch these on your recommendation. Would not have otherwise.
    6) Still does not appeal to me.
    5) Was probably never going to watch it, now I will.
    4)-(3) Never even heard of these. Might look for it.
    2) Actually did not care for this.
    1) I will watch it, but the premise is not something that draws me.
    5) Not gonna watch it (even though my brother kind of recommended it)
    4) Not gonna watch it.
    3) The premise at no point plays a substantive part in the story (the plot has been done before without the premise)
    2) I call it the stupidest movie of the year. It had the pretension to try and explain things with science.
    1) I have heard so many good things about this, but I imagine your opinion is probably what mine would be.

    • Cecil_Trachenburg

      I know a lot of people that put Prisoners in the top spot. It was a great film.

      All is Lost is an amazing film but not everyone will get into it, with the lack of dialog. (which for me was one of the film’s greatest strengths)

      • Just finished watching “All is Lost”. And yes it was worth my time and was a really good movie. Did not know it was Roadside Productions (I also liked “Mud” which they did and they have a good reputation with me).

        However, I know why this sort of survivalist fiction is done in the form of Novels. Pretty much anything by Gary Paulsen (who I loved as a kid) for example. Without that inner monologue I just kept thinking, “Wow, Robert is cursing a hell of a lot more than I would.”

        Though there were two times I audibly went, “Oh my.” by the tension on screen.

        Thank you for the recommendation.

        • Cecil_Trachenburg

          Glad you liked it! I was lucky enough to catch this in the theater, being that I lived near one of the 86 theaters playing it across the US.

  • Moppet

    You liked Chronicles too? I knew I liked your show for a reason. I really enjoyed Riddick. I heard Vin went to lengths to get this film out, at all. I also heard there might be a second one. I really hope that happens.

    I need to give Europa Report a watch now. I really love science fiction, and when I heard this was found footage, in style, I stupidly wrote it off. Your notes on it give me hope for it.

    On a slightly related note I really just want a resurgence of sci-fi films that are excited about space exploration again, be it in a more down to earth or fantastical manner. Horror elements can be present, or not, as they like, but I really just want a space or alien planet exploration film where we’re just there for the joy of discovery and revelation. Whatever the results, be they horror, fantasy, straight sci-fi or otherwise, I just want more of that. At some point we seem to have fallen out of love with the idea of space exploration. It’s sad.

    • Cecil_Trachenburg

      Yes! Another Chronicles lover. The movie had so much depth to it and showed more of the universe withing which Riddick exists. Since the DVD/Blu sales of Riddick were huge they announced another entry in the series. Although I think it will be another one more like Riddick. Perhaps they will end the series with something more along the lines of Chronicles, with him destroying the Necromongers.

      Europa Report is FF in a way that works without all the shaky cam and crying into the camera. It is hard scifi and sometimes it feels like watching a documentary, which is intentional. (they are presenting the footage they acquired) I liked it for being refreshing and a serious look at space exploration but its nor for everyone.

      I agree. It seems that all space movies have gone into aliens or space/action movies. I think that is why I liked Europa Report. It was more about the discovery than survival horror.


    Agree on Man Of Steel and Spring Breakers. Steel wasn’t perfect, but it wasn’t some horrible piece of shit like some people were passing it off as. Spring Breakers was more proof that Harmony Korine shouldn’t be allowed within 100 feet of a camera. It was just self-indulgent crap that felt like Korine standing to the left of me and yelling “SEE HOW ARTY AND DEEP I AM!” while James Franco was standing to my right and screaming “LOOK AT WHAT A SERIOUS AND IMPORTANT ACTOR I AM! LOOK!” and Selena Gomez and Vanessa Hudgens were standing in front of me and yelling “NOTICE HOW MATURE AND SEXY WE ARE! WE WANT CAREERS OUTSIDE OF DISNEY!”

  • Jackie

    To be honest, Resolution wasn’t very good. I thought it was too vague for its own good and was padded badly with pointless talking scenes.

  • Guest

    I tried Resolution, and i dunno, it didn’t really work for me. I did like Spring from the same director though.