2012 Kaedrin Movie Awards

Welcome to the 7th Annual Kaedrin Movie Awards! As of right now, I’ve seen 68 movies that would be considered 2012 releases. No film festivals this year, so this is about par for the course, and I’ll probably end up somewhere in the mid 70s by the time I get to the top 10 in a few weeks. This post thus commences my end of the year recap, only a few weeks late! [Previous Installments here: 2006 | 2007 | 2008 | 2009 | 2010 | 2011] I’ll post the nominations now, and like last year, I’ll post all the winners next weekend.

2012 was a surprisingly solid year for movies. I don’t know that it’s the best year in recent memory or anything, but it was a lot of fun, and there were a lot of really good movies released, even in the typical early year doldrums and end of summer dumping period. There were a fair amount of disappointments, of course, and not being a real critic or anything, it’s not like I went out of my way to watch bad movies. I’m lucky like that. But even critics are gushing over the year in film, and there’s a lot to like about the year. I haven’t really started to compile my top 10 list, but I can already think of 5-8 definite inclusions off the top of my head, which is a pretty good sign. There are still a few things I want to catch up with before I post that list, but the awards can start now. One of the points of these awards is that they allow me to give some love to films that I like, but which aren’t necessarily great or are otherwise flawed (and thus the categories may seem a bit eclectic). Some of these movies will end up on my top 10, but the grand majority of them will not.

The rules for this are the same as last year: Nominated movies must have been released in 2012 (in the US) and I have to have seen the movie (and while I have seen a lot of movies, I don’t pretend to have seen a comprehensive selection – don’t let that stop you from suggesting something though). Also, I suppose I should mention the requisite disclaimer that these sorts of lists are inherently subjective and personal. But that’s all part of the fun, right? So here are the nominees for this year’s awards:

Best Villain/Badass

A mildly good year for villainy. Perhaps not as many nominations, but what’s here is all pretty quality stuff, though there are two pretty clear options that are ahead of the pack. As with previous years, my picks in this category are for individuals, not groups (i.e. no vampires or zombies as a group). There’s a kinda exception to this rule in the nominations, but I really just don’t want to split the vote on those two, you know what I mean?

Best Hero/Badass

Quite a heroic year, certainly outweighing the villainy, but not by a ton. Again limited to individuals and not groups. Similar to the villains category, there’s an exception here, but I put two characters together because I felt like it. Sue me.

Best Comedic Performance

I have to say, this wasn’t a particularly great year for comedic performances. There were a lot of movies that I couldn’t quite bring myself to nominate because they weren’t really straight comedies. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing for those movies, but it makes categories like this one hard to populate.

Breakthrough Performance

As with previous years, my main criteria for this category was if I watched a movie, then immediately looking up the actor/actress on IMDB to see what else they’ve done (or where they came from). This can sometimes even happen for a long established actor, and this year is particularly annoying in that case, as there are two extremely well known folks that I’m nominating here. Yes, the criteria is vague, but the fun of these awards is that they’re supposed to be idiosyncratic and weird, so I’m just going with it.

Most Visually Stunning

Sometimes even bad movies can look really great…

Best Sci-Fi or Horror Film

In case it’s not obvious, I’m a total genre hound, and these are movies that don’t tend to get a lot of attention, so I like to shine a light on them.

Best Sequel/Reboot

Typically a difficult category to populate, and this year was no exception, so I was a little liberal with the nominations.

Biggest Disappointment

Always a difficult award to figure out, as there are different ways in which a movie can disappoint. Usually, expectations play just as big a part of this as the actual quality of the film, and it’s possible that a good movie can win the award because of high expectations.

Best Action Sequences

We’ve got a solid, action packed year here. This award isn’t for individual action sequences, but rather an overall estimation of each film.

Best Plot Twist/Surprise

Well, I suppose even listing nominees here constitutes something of a spoiler, but it’s a risk we’ll have to take, right? A decent year for plot twists, though I don’t see a clear winner either… this is going to be a hard category to pick!

Best High Concept Film

This is always a strange category to populate because the concept is a bit nebulous, but nevertheless, there are always a few interesting choices…

2012’s 2011 Movie of the Year

I instituted this category a few years ago because I was always discovering movies from the previous year after the fact. Of course, since then, I’ve had difficulty populating this category. This is going to be a tough choice, as I have to say, I wasn’t really blown away by any of the nominees…

Anyone have any suggestions (for either category or nominations)? Comments, complaints and suggestions are welcome, as always.

Surprisingly, it’s looking like The Dark Knight Rises and Dredd (?!) are leading the way with 5 nominations. The Avengers, Detention, Django Unchained, and Skyfall all pulled down a respectable 4 nominations as well. Lots of films earned 3 nominations, and even more got 2 or 1 nominations. In total, 39 different films were nominated (a little less than last year, but more than previous years). So I’m going to let these nominations stew for a week, then announce the winners next Sunday, followed by the traditional Arbitrary Awards and eventually culminating in my top 10 of 2012 list (which may be a few weeks, though it will be before the Oscars, which are a little earlier than normal this year)…

Update: It’s actually the seventh annual awards. I’m a lazy moron.