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2012 has been a busy year on the WW film beat. In April, after five years at the helm, Aaron Mesh moved to the news desk. Matthew Singer replaced him until October, when he became music editor and Rebecca Jacobson took over the beat. And so, we bring you a trio of top threes: the best three films we each viewed during our respective tenures.


AARON MESH, January-April

1. Once Upon a Time in Anatolia
Looper
Silver Linings Playbook
2. Goodbye First Love
Moonrise Kingdom
Adventures of Antoine Doinel
3. Damsels in Distress


MATTHEW SINGER,
April-September

1. The Cabin in the Woods
The Apparition
House at the End of the Street
The Devil Inside
2. Beasts of the Southern Wild
3. Killer Joe
Killer Joe


REBECCA JACOBSON, October-December

1. Silver Linings Playbook
Silver Linings Playbook is many things: ropey-dopey romance, offbeat portrait of mental illness, sharp family drama, scrappy ode to eccentricity. But director David O. Russell, aided by magnificently honest (and honestly magnificent) performances from Bradley Cooper and Jennifer Lawrence, makes it all work. From its stars' discussion of psychotropic drugs to its go-for-broke bizarro dance scene, it's one of the funniest and most deeply affecting films in years.

2. The Sessions
As a 38-year-old polio survivor who seeks to lose his virginity, John Hawkes turns in one of 2012's most arresting performances. The Sessions has received flak for pulling punches, but in neither gawking at nor glorifying sex, director Ben Lewin gives the power of physical intimacy its due.

3. Lincoln
In my short tenure, no film has frustrated me more than Lincoln. But it wriggled its stately, chiaroscuro way into my mind and has remained firmly lodged there since. Though waxy, it captures the most mesmerizing political wheeling and dealing I've seen on screen, and Daniel Day-Lewis' performance is something of genius.