The 25 Best Films of 2013: A Video Countdown

great_gatsby-2's year-end bonanza will formally kick off next week with a number of features that look back at the movies of 2013 as they were seen through the eyes of our contributors, but before we launch into that madness I wanted to share a list of my personal favorites, selections for whom there is no one to blame but me.

There's a brief intro to set the stage and paint a slightly broader picture of the year that was (with a few red herrings tossed in for good measure), but this video is ultimately a countdown of my favorite 25 films of 2013. I've played loose and fast with the eligibility requirements in the past, but this time around I thought it would be easier and more instructive to honor only those films that were publicly released in the United States during the calendar year of 2013 (my refusal to abide by this criteria in previous videos explains why Olivier Assayas' "Something in the Air" and Abbas Kiarostami's "Like Someone in Love" aren't included). Of course, the team here at strongly believes that it's crucial to celebrate those indie and foreign films that have yet to secure domestic distribution, and you can read our list of the year's best undistributed films here. 

I suppose it's worth noting that I waited to finish and upload this video until I had seen all of the films that seemed pertinent, including those slated to be released later this month (the appropriate permissions were granted to express my opinion on anything that may still be embargoed). I wasn't able to see "47 Ronin" or "Grudge Match", so I guess I'll look like a real idiot if they turn out to be major contenders. Otherwise, I guess I'll have to stick with looking like an idiot for millions of other reasons.

Anyway, this was a lot of fun to cut together. While I don't expect that you'll agree with all of my choices (given that this is a ranked list of 25 films, it would be really strange if you did), I hope you enjoy watching this all the same. Thanks so much, and stay tuned to the end for a list of the music used and the 2013 films in which the songs appeared.

Headphones and high volume are strongly recommended. To see it bigger, either play it full screen or watch it on Vimeo.