Like everybody else in this racket, I've already published my top 10 list -- well, a lot of top 10 lists, including my favorite distributed and undistributed movies, best performances and so on -- but no single numerical overview can possibly convey the full range of movie experiences this year. As a result, much slips through the cracks, and even after publishing list after list I'm left with a desire to single out a few more titles.
So once more with feeling: Here are 10 movies I like quite a bit but either discovered too late in the game or realized after the fact that I could have done more to spread the word about them. Collectively, they paint a very different, far more exciting and diverse portrait of 2013 at the movies than the relatively pat narrative created by awards season fervor.
10. "The Selfish Giant"
Clio Barnard's first narrative feature is a tender and profoundly melancholic look at two boys who form an unlikely friendship in an isolated countryside. It has the gentle flourishes of Shane Meadows' coming of age movies but builds to a far more powerful emotional climax than anything in his oeuvre.
9. "Ilo Ilo"
Singapore's Oscar submission won Directors' Fortnight in Cannes yet barely gained any recognition in the U.S. because it's so low key. But Anthony Chen's directorial debut about a 10-year-old boy who forms a bond with his Filipino caretaker while his parents war over money issues is a stirring look at catharsis amidst familial discord.
8. "RPG OKC"
There are dozens of shorts that screen at festivals throughout the year and never get noticed beyond them. But I was privileged to serve on a jury at the Philadelphia Film Festival and award this charming and innovative short, made with 16-bit graphics and centering on a romance between two retro video game characters, which perfectly illustrates how a great gimmick can develop into an emotionally involving story. Watch it below: