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by Steve Greene and Eric Kohn
June 28, 2012 12:26 PM
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The Best Indie Movies of 2012 So Far, According to Criticwire

Top Foreigh-Language Features of 2012:

1. Sleepless Night (Film Page), directed by Frederic Jardin (2011 TIFF - 2012 Theatrical Release)
Average Criticwire rating: A- (10.125 out of 12.0, 16 reviews)

2. Graceland (Film Page), directed by Ron Morales (2012 Festival Premiere - Tribeca)
Average Criticwire ratingA- (10.0 out of 12.0, 6 reviews)

3. Holy Motors (Film Page), directed by Leos Carax (2012 Festival Premiere - Cannes)
Average Criticwire ratingA- (9.92 out of 12.0, 25 reviews)

4. Amour (Film Page), directed by Michael Haneke (2012 Festival Premiere - Cannes)
Average Criticwire ratingA- (9.8 out of 12.0, 30 reviews)

5. No (Film Page), directed by Pablo Larrain (2012 Festival Premiere - Cannes)
Average Criticwire ratingA- (9.786 out of 12.0, 14 reviews)

6. The Turin Horse (Film Page), directed by Bela Tarr (2011 Berlin - 2012 Theatrical Release)
Average Criticwire rating: A- (9.714 out of 12.0, 20 reviews)

7. The Raid: Redemption (Film Page), directed by Gareth Evans (2011 TIFF - 2012 Theatrical Release)
Average Criticwire ratingB+ (9.349 out of 12.0, 43 reviews)

8. I Wish (Film Page), directed by Hirozaku Kore-Eda (2012 Theatrical Release)
Average Criticwire ratingB+ (9.25 out of 12.0, 16 reviews)

9. The Kid with a Bike (Film Page), directed by Jean Pierre and Luc Dardenne (2011 Cannes - 2012 Theatrical Release)
Average Criticwire ratingB+ (9.2 out of 12.0, 54 reviews)

10. Yossi (Film Page), directed by Eytan Fox (2012 Festival Premiere - Tribeca)
Average Criticwire ratingB+ (9.167 out of 12.0, 6 reviews)

Runners-up: "The Secret World of Arrietty," "Oslo, August 31st," "Attenberg"

Top Festival Premieres of 2012:

1. Booker's Place: A Mississippi Story (Film Page), directed by Raymond De Felitta (2012 Festival Premiere - Tribeca)
Average Criticwire ratingA- (10.286 out of 12.0, 7 reviews)

2. High Tech, Low Life (Film Page), directed by Stephen T. Maing (2012 Festival Premiere - Tribeca)
Average Criticwire ratingA- (10.125 out of 12.0, 8 reviews)

3. Journey to Planet X (Film Page), directed by Myles Kane and Josh Koury (2012 Festival Premiere - Tribeca)
Average Criticwire ratingA- (10.0 out of 12.0, 7 reviews)

4. Holy Motors (Film Page), directed by Leos Carax (2012 Festival Premiere - Cannes)
Average Criticwire ratingA- (9.92 out of 12.0, 25 reviews)

5. The Invisible War (Film Page), directed by Kirby Dick (2012 Festival Premiere - Sundance)
Average Criticwire rating: A- (9.9 out of 12.0, 10 reviews)

6. Tchoupitoulas (Film Page), directed by Bill Ross and Turner Ross (2012 Festival Premiere - SXSW)
Average Criticwire ratingA- (9.833 out of 12.0, 6 reviews)

7. Amour (Film Page), directed by Michael Haneke (2012 Festival Premiere - Cannes)
Average Criticwire ratingA- (9.8 out of 12.0, 30 reviews)

8. No (Film Page), directed by Pablo Larrain (2012 Festival Premiere - Cannes)
Average Criticwire ratingA- (9.786 out of 12.0, 14 reviews)

9. Side by Side (Film Page), directed by Chris Kenneally (2012 Festival Premiere - Berlin)
Average Criticwire ratingA- (9.583 out of 12.0, 12 reviews)

10. West of Memphis (Film Page), directed by Amy Berg (2012 Festival Premiere - Sundance)
Average Criticwire ratingA- (9.5 out of 12.0, 10 reviews)

Runners-up: "Under African Skies," "Searching for Sugar Man," "Sleepwalk with Me"

Top English-Language Features of 2012:

1. Sleepwalk with Me (Film Page), directed by Mike Birbiglia and Seth Barrish (2012 Festival Premiere - Sundance)
Average Criticwire rating: B+ (9.364 out of 12.0, 11 reviews)

2. Sightseers (Film Page), directed by Ben Wheatley (2012 Festival Premiere - Cannes)
Average Criticwire ratingB+ (9.083 out of 12.0, 12 reviews)

3. Compliance (Film Page), directed by Craig Zobel (2012 Festival Premiere - Sundance)
Average Criticwire ratingB+ (9.0 out of 12.0, 27 reviews)

4. Beasts of the Southern Wild (Film Page), directed by Benh Zeitlin (2012 Festival Premiere - Sundance)
Average Criticwire ratingB+ (8.962 out of 12.0, 53 reviews)

5. Sound of My Voice (Film Page), directed by Zal Batmanglij (2011 Sundance - 2012 Theatrical Release)
Average Criticwire rating: B+ (8.875 out of 12.0, 16 reviews)

6. The Surrogate (Film Page), directed by Ben Lewin (2012 Festival Premiere - Sundance)
Average Criticwire rating: B+ (8.857 out of 12.0, 21 reviews)

7. Moonrise Kingdom (Film Page), directed by Wes Anderson (2012 Festival Premiere - Cannes, Theatrical Release)
Average Criticwire ratingB+ (8.842 out of 12.0, 57 reviews)

8. The Cabin in the Woods (Film Page), directed by Drew Goddard (2012 Festival Premiere - SXSW, Theatrical Release)
Average Criticwire ratingB+ (8.821 out of 12.0, 5 reviews)

9. Liberal Arts (Film Page), directed by Josh Radnor (2012 Festival Premiere - Sundance)
Average Criticwire ratingB+ (8.818 out of 12.0, 11 reviews)

10. Somebody Up There Likes Me (Film Page), directed by Bob Byington (2012 Festival Premiere - SXSW)
Average Criticwire ratingB+ (8.8 out of 12.0, 11 reviews)

Runners-up: "You Are Here," "Your Sister's Sister," "Bernie"

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7 Comments

  • T.J. | January 27, 2014 7:32 AMReply

    I am hoping someone can help me find the name of a film. I believe it was a 2012 Independent film. The film centered on teenagers living in a halfway house for various reasons. The film was not a documentary. Many of them center on mental health issues. The film dealt with the affects of living in, and leaving a halfway house because some teenagers were about to become legal adults. Any help would be appreciated!

  • Shams | March 20, 2014 6:29 AM

    Is it Short Term 12 ?

  • Nahomy | May 24, 2013 4:15 PMReply

    1. Moonrise Kingdom
    2. Remember the daze
    3. The myth of the american sleepover
    4. Holy Motors
    5. 50/50
    6. Seeking a friend for the end of the world
    7. Precious
    8. Silver linings playbook
    9. It's kind of a funny story
    10. 500 days of summer
    11. Take this waltz
    12.Safety not guaranteed
    13. The best exotic marigold hotel
    14. 17 girls
    15. The kids are all right
    16. December boys
    17. The Deep
    18. Were the world mine
    19. Beasts of the southern wild
    20. The runaways
    are my to 20 favorite indie films :)

  • me | January 10, 2013 7:45 PMReply

    amazing!!!

  • AJ | November 19, 2012 5:59 PMReply

    You should probably have at least listed a synopsis for each movie. With no details, the list is pretty worthless.

  • brian godshall | June 29, 2012 2:37 PMReply

    I think that SAFETY NOT GUARANTEED is one of the best indie films so far this year.

  • Ethan | December 20, 2012 1:04 PM

    i 100% agree with you also Moonrise Kingdom is one of the best movie I have seen this year