Friday, December 27, 2013

2013 was the Year of...

2013 was a pretty big year. Perhaps not in my film watching (which will be shown in my unofficial Top 15 that'll be posted up tomorrow morning), but there were plenty of things that I loved about this crazy year. So here's a big gigantic mess of the things that made 2013 what it was for me, some of which are movie related, most of which is culture related, and just the general happenings of 2013 that will remain landmarks for the year. Kinda like flipping through the back pages of my diary. But more interesting than my diary would be if I actually had time to keep one.

The Actors 

Daniel Day-Lewis
Yup, this was definitely my biggest actor obsession of the year. Spurred off by my drama class doing The Crucible, and then turning into this big thing where all I'd do with my spare time is watch his Oscar acceptance speeches over and over (I haven't watched one in about three weeks - have I been rehabilitated?). All other spare time was taken up by watching all of his movies. Which brought me to the lovely My Beautiful Laundrette, the awe-inspiring My Left Foot, the rather restrained The Age of Innocence, the amazing In the Name of the Father, of course The Crucible, the gutsy The Boxer, the violent Gangs of New York, the heartbreaking The Ballad of Jack and Rose, a rewatch of There Will Be Blood which boosted my love for the film, a rewatch of Nine which dragged down my supposed love for that film, and a couple of watches of Lincoln which just exemplifies how Daniel has mastered his craft. I wish I had at least 40% of his commitment.

Bradley Cooper
This has been a banner year for Bradley Cooper, an actor who I've long been in love with since The Hangover back in 2009. Along comes Silver Linings Playbook, which shows what I've long known: Bradley Cooper is one talented actor who is more than just the "eye candy" status that the woman's magazines like to lay on him. The Place Beyond the Pines gave him another chance to show how talented he is, and I hear that he's one of the best things about American Hustle. Hopefully The Hangover has been long left behind, and it is only up from here.

IDK, I find this photo kinda beautiful.
Jennifer Lawrence
She's just simply one of the best people out. Even if I'm still a tiny bit mad about her premature Oscar win (shoulda been J-Chas!), she's just the most genuine and talented actresses out there. How can you not love her?

Brie Larson
No, I haven't seen Short Term 12, so I don't know much about the amazing performance that she apparently gives. But I'm glad that people are finally taking notice of her, as I loved her in Scott Pilgrim vs. the World, Rampart, Tanner Hall and 21 Jump Street. From her big year, I've only seen The Spectacular Now, and she was pretty much perfect in that. I'm really kinda rooting for her to sneak in with an Oscar nod next year, even if I haven't seen Short Term 12, because the girl deserves it.

Elizabeth Debicki
I can't decide whether I truly love her or if I'm just insanely jealous of her. The girl graduates from college, and then lands a part as one of my favourite characters in my favourite book. And she's perfect in the role. The best thing? That her star power is only beginning, and there's plenty more that'll be popping up in so many more films in the future.

Films I saw the most this year

I must say, this was a year of rewatching more than anything else, because I simply didn't have the required brain power to be fully invested in something that wasn't school related for two hours. Which resulted in many films getting more than their fair share of my time. And here they are:

The Great Gatsby - six times. I don't even know why. I just think that Leonardo DiCaprio's face tends to make me feel better about life.
The Perks of Being a Wallflower - six times. Even though it makes me cry enough tears to fill up the Pacific Ocean, I still thought it was okay to see it on six separate occasions. And I can definitely say that it still hits me as hard as it did when I first saw it on the plane to Japan.
Silver Linings Playbook - five times. I'm not entirely sure of why I managed to rack up five watches of it, especially considering that I didn't like it all that much on the first watch. However, I think five might be the final limit, as my love for it is starting to wane off.
Pitch Perfect - five times. Don't judge me. It's just the perfect watching with friends movie, okay? In fact, it is just the perfect movie if you want to turn your brain off and just have something in front of you. I dig it.
Atonement - four times. I can't actually count the amount of times I've seen this film this year, as I've seen bits and pieces on heaps of different occasions. I can promise you that I wasn't watching it because of emotional torture: it was the film I had to study for my final English exam, so I had to do a fair bit of watching in order to unwrap enough magic to conjure up a good grade (here's hoping).
Zero Dark Thirty - three times. As I said in this post, it was interesting to have this film mirror three different stages of this year.


I have about 0.1% music knowledge, and that mostly comes from the movies. However, Lorde was pretty much my favourite thing musically, with Royals probably being the song of the year. Personally, my favourite song of hers is a tie between Bravado (off The Love Club - EP) and Buzzcut Season, but I absolutely loved Tennis Court and Team and 400 Lux. Pure Heroine is an absolutely amazing album, the only problem is that it is too short. Anyway, here would be my 'soundtrack' to 2013 (not just 2013 songs):
All of the Lights - Kanye West, Bang Bang - Will.I.Am, Black Skinhead Kanye West, Blood on the Leaves Kanye West, Blurred Lines - Robin Thicke, Burn - Ellie Goulding, Come On Eileen - Dexy's Midnight Runners, Crazy In Love (Kid Koala Version) - Emeli Sande, Dog Days are Over - Florence + the Machine, Fake Plastic Trees - Radiohead, Figure 8 - Ellie Goulding, Give Me Love - Ed Sheeran, Gold Digger - Kanye West, Guns and Horses - Ellie Goulding, Halcyon - Ellie Goulding, Heroes - David Bowie, Hey Brother - Avicii, Ho Hey - The Lumineers, Hold My Liquor Kanye West, Holdin On - Flume, Into the Past - Nero, Lego House - Ed Sheeran, Lights - Ellie Goulding, Lost - Frank Ocean, On Top - Flume Feat. T-Shirt, Only You - Ellie Goulding, Over the Love - Florence + the Machine, Paradise - Lana Del Rey, Power Kanye West, Radio - Lana Del Rey, Runaway Kanye West, Same Love - Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, Spectrum (Say My Name) - Florence + the Machine/Calvin Harris, Super Rich Kids - Frank Ocean, Together - The xx, Tornado - Jonsi, You Need Me, I Don't Need You - Ed Sheeran, Young and Beautiful - Lana Del Rey, 100$ Bill - Jay-Z, 10538 Overture - Electric Light Orchestra

And everything else: another quick recap of my final year of school

I almost don't feel like I went to Japan earlier this year, but yes, that happened, and I was definitely all the better for the experience. And then there was Year 13 camp, which I also forget happened this year, but the everyone was better for the experience. Much of the early part of the year was dedicated to Stage Challenge, but I can't forget going to the Young Leaders conference (probably my favourite part of the year) and doing a reading at the Anzac Day Service. But yes, Stage Challenge was definitely the highlight, and definitely made me want to direct even more than I originally did. After that there were plenty of projects and speech competitions to keep me occupied, along with getting nominated for a local Youth Award and receiving a $5000 leadership scholarship from University of Canterbury. Along came a role in The Crucible which was a pretty cool experience, and then all of a sudden it was the end of the year. The final day at school was a pretty awesome day indeed. And then there were exams, the ball, and the Valedictory Speech. But one mustn't forget the local 'celebrity status' involved in this year: being on a billboard, getting a cheeky duckface selfie with my Deputy Head Girl in the newspaper, in fact the many times I popped up in the paper, and meeting the Prime Minister, John Key. To say that this year has been well-documented is an understatement...

The top left photo is all of the papers I've been in this year. And I kid you not, the top right photo actually happened. Probably my favourite achievement of the year.
And all of the other stuff

Remember that time I couldn't play Temple Run any more because I started thinking that it would be fun to be the guy in the game? Remember that time I was so obsessed with Candy Crush that when I closed my eyes all I could see was candy? Remember that time when caffiene continuously saved my life? Basically, this has been a year of eating too many takeaways on the go, drinking gallons of cranberry juice to get rid of a kidney infection, spending too much time cleaning the common room, and reading Indiewire like it was my bible (I love the Women & Hollywood section). There was a trip to Sydney (wah I wanna go back), there was an Ed Sheeran concert, and there was a trip to Christchurch which sealed the deal for me going to uni down there. Let's just say, that 2013 was the year of "too much", and the year where I spent most of it wanting to be Lorde. Shame I'm not musically talented, though.

Anyway, stay tuned to see my unofficial 15 favourite films of the year when I wake up. But for now, what were your favourite moments of 2013?


  1. I love Lorde's Royals, but I have only heard a few others of her songs – but I think she's going places and we'll all simply HAVE to notice her. Debicki is fantastic and was truly the star of Gatsby (sorry, Leo). Oh, andEd Sheeran was my favourite in the first few months of the year, too. :P This post is so much fun, I love the year you had!

    1. Oh, download Pure Heroine! It is so great. Elizabeth Debicki is the true star of Gatsby! Ed Sheeran is so lovely. Yes, it was a great year.

  2. i love royals, and it was definitely the year of jennifer lawrence (people will NOT stop talking about every little thing she does lol).

    1. Yes, it is definitely the year of Jennifer Lawrence - I'm getting a little sick of it, but she is fantastic!

  3. Awesome round-up! I dig your soundtrack. Oh, and I've also seen Pitch Perfect five times. :)

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You mustn't be afraid to dream a little bigger, darling.


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