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2013 Movie Picks: Alissa Wilkinson
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John Gallagher Jr. and Brie Larson in 'Short Term 12'

For movie lovers and movie critics, the end of the year brings an avalanche of "best of" lists to analyze, pick apart, and argue over. Here at CT Movies, knowing that every critic and every movie lover brings different tastes, interests, and perspectives to the table, we've decided to take a different approach.

Each of our regular critics came up with a list of "best" films in categories of their own choosing, and we'll be running them over the next week. These aren't necessarily the year's best films, nor even the best movies these critics saw all year—just a sampling of the riches of 2013. We hope you'll find something to love.

Best Movie With Theological Resonance
Her
(Rated R for language, sexual content, and brief nudity)

This is tied with the last film on this list for my favorite movie of the year, and when I saw it a second time this week, I realized that it's far more complex than it appears on the surface, with thought-provoking themes about love and friendship, technology and media, reality and artifice, and more. But it's okay, because the story sweeps you along the first time through and leaves you breathless. Brett McCracken's excellent review for CT points out the theological resonances, particularly regarding incarnation, and I blogged a little more about some of the interesting bits I noticed the second time around. (No spoilers in either of these, of course!)

Most Heartbreaking Movie
The Spectacular Now
(Rated R for alcohol use, language, and some sexuality)

This movie flew under my radar and I wasn't going to cover it at all, until my husband sat me down and made me watch the trailer—and Shailene Woodley (who will be starring ...

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2013 Movie Picks: Alissa Wilkinson
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