Actor Sophia Takal’s Favorite Movies of 2013

Movies Features

In the lead-up to the unveiling of our definitive Top 50 Movies of 2013 list, we’ve asked some friends of Paste to tell us their favorites of the year. Tune in for a different list each day. Today’s contributor is actor Sophia Takal, who has appeared in, among others, Gabi on the Roof in July (pictured), Green (which she also directed), V/H/S, and this year’s Hellaware and All the Light in the Sky.

2013 Movies I Thought Were the Tops

In the interest of full disclosure, I feel compelled to admit that I don’t watch very many movies. I never have. I’m not proud of this fact, but I did feel like mentioning this fact because my list is far from comprehensive and doesn’t include movies I should have seen or even said I saw to seem cool, but didn’t actually watch. That being said, the movies on this list are films that I truly loved.

I am not a journalist and this is an opinion piece, so I hope you don’t mind that I am putting some of my close friends films on this list. They are on here because I happen to have extremely talented friends who made extraordinary films.

I will list them reverse alphabetical order because I am tired of every single movie starting with the letter A just so it can be first on VOD.

Wolf of Wall Street
by Martin Scorsese
Do I really need to put a Martin Scorsese movie on my top 10 list? I mean, he doesn’t need the help, right? But this movie was so damn good. Out of all the movies starring Money this year, this one was right up there in my number one spot. The acting was great. And even though I got really bored sometimes when all the characters were doing was dancing around and the music was so loud that it woke the old lady sleeping next to me, I still loved it.

White Reindeer
by Zach Clark
I love this movie with all of my heart. Everyone has said so much about what makes this movie great when it came out that I feel redundant pointing out how truly special this movie is. Anna Margaret shines as a newly widowed suburban real estate agent.

Sun Don’t Shine
by Amy Seimetz
Thank God Amy Seimetz exists. Without her I would probably believe what everyone says when they talk about how film is dying or dead. It’s not, and Sun Don’t Shine is here to prove it. This film is a real living thing. It’s on its own trip (in a good way) and Kate Sheil is fucking amazing in this movie.

by Alexander Payne
I recently learned that there are some people in this world who don’t like Alexander Payne’s films, which seems crazy to me. He’s so good! Anyway, I loved this movie best of all his movies because I have daddy issues and because I want there to be more movies about being old because everyone gets old, if they’re lucky.

It Felt Like Love
by Eliza Hittman
The only American film I’ve seen that’s so honestly captured the trauma of adolescent female sexuality. Gorgeously shot and acted, wonderfully directed. I was completely blown away when I saw this at BAMCinemaFest and I wish I was the one who made this movie.

Inside Llewyn Davis
by Joel & Ethan Coen
I watched this the other night when I was feeling quite hopeless about my life as a creative person. This movie didn’t make me any less hopeless, but it did make me feel less alone. I realized if this career doesn’t work out I can always join the merchant marines.

Gimme the Loot
by Adam Leon
This is the most fun movie I saw all year. Is the soundtrack available on vinyl? I wish. I love the loose, playful atmosphere Adam creates. I was smiling the entire time I watched this movie.

A Teacher
by Hannah Fidell
Lindsay Burdge is an amazing actress and finally everyone knows it. A Teacher’s success is in large part because of Lindsay’s performance, which is so nuanced, filled with life and energy and passion.

Frances Ha
by Noah Baumbach
I loved this movie too much for words. I haven’t grow up to be who I thought I’d be. This movie made me less sad about that fact than I otherwise would have been. Everyone has their own path!

I want to give “shout outs” to two films that I acted in. I felt self-conscious putting them on my top 10 list for obvious reasons, but I love these two movies as a whole and would love them even if I wasn’t in them.

by Michael M. Bilandic
Mike Bilandic is one of the most exciting directors working today. His risk-taking energy and sense of humor inspired me so much that after shooting Hellaware I made a movie called Deviltown (currently in post production) as an attempt to mimic Mike’s loose, easy, non-judgmental, completely relaxed energy on set. I think I failed but it was still fun to try!

All the Light in the Sky
by Joe Swanberg
Jane Adams is so good in this movie! I love that a movie exists that quietly explores what it means to come to terms with the aging process. Also David Siskind, who is a solar engineer in the movie and in real life, has some really profound things to say about the environment.

Lists from other friends of Paste:
Director Lynn Shelton
Director Megan Griffiths
Producer Natasha Giliberti
Author Kayli Stollak
Actor Josh Radnor
Author Anna Goldfarb
Director Dan Mirvish
Director Paul Rachman
Director Karin Hayes
Producer Anne Hubbell
Director Stacie Passon
Actor Beth Grant
Actor Tallie Medel
Director Adam Leon

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