By Amanda Mundin
The new year is always good news in the film industry because it means the awards season is truly underway and we can look forward to the best films of the year. However, before we look ahead to The Oscars, let’s look back at the best of 2013…In January, one of the biggest films of 2012 was still going strong – Skyfall turned out to be one of the most popular Bond films of all time, with Daniel Craig proving he has staying power as the toughest Bond we’ve had, even bottles of Heineken were his drink of choice, whatever next? We’ll find out in 2015. Argo and Silver Linings Playbook took us all by surprise as they quietly came out of nowhere to glean awards success and audiences to rival any blockbuster. Quartet, a very popular Ritz film, was hotly followed by our biggest film of the year Les Miserables. It has to be said, I still haven’t been dragged to see it, and this aversion to musicals of mine is becoming more of a phobia I feel… although 10,000 of you can’t be wrong! Summer always brings the usual raft of blockbusters but in 2013, we were treated to the best and most surprising film of the year for me, Behind the Candelabra. This is what film is about! Entertaining, surprising, engaging, shocking, OTT - did we really need Matt Damon in those budgie smugglers? Yes, yes of course we did, after all “too much of a good thing is wonderful”! As if we hadn’t had enough glitz and glamour Gatsby dropped by. Never one for understatement, Baz Lurmahn showed us all he could turn one of America’s greatest novel into a monumental movie. We had our own extravaganza at The Ritz when we turned No28 into Gatsby’s for one hot sultry night of entertainment with Dr Andy Minion. I am referring to the weather of course there, not the Dr. Veering off the film topic for a moment, I have to say how happy we are to be able to bring the best performers from around the world to Belper. Dame Helen, Benedict Cumberbatch, the wonderful late Richard Griffiths, the Bolshoi taking everyone’s breath away and then there’s The Met, while not really my cup of tea, you have to be in awe of such talent. So back to The Oscars then, look out for 12 Years a Slave, The Wolf of Wall Street, Nebraska, American Hustle, Dallas Buyers Club, August: Osage County, Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom. Not to mention some films which have been around a little while but will have renewed interest: Gravity, Captain Phillips, Philomena, Rush & Blue Jasmine. In future columns we’ll take a look at film history and filmmaking – the directors, producers, actors, the script, the music… all the elements needed to bring great stories to life on the big screen.