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Empire's Best Films Of 2012
The Empire staff choose their top 20 of the year - is your favourite on the list?

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9

Headhunters

DIRECTOR Morten Tyldum
STARS Aksel Hennie, Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, Synnøve Macody Lunds

Boasting the second biggest opening weekend in Norwegian — in your face, Avengers — Jo Nesbo's Headhunters (or, if we are being proper, Hodejegerne) continued the current vogue for Scandi-crime but added a strain of jet-black comedy to nourish the noir. Few heroes this year have been put through the mill as much as headhunter-cum-art thief Roger Brown (a terrific Aksei Hennie) who is cuckolded, sees his best friend poisoned, is covered in manure and attacked by a huge dog (we are not even halfway through). Brown's descent into hell is presided over by great supporting characters — his trophy wife (Synnøve Macody Lund, Norway's answer to Mark Kermode) and a mysterious mercenary (Nicolaj Coster-Waldau) — and is filleted with delicious absurdist detail: the English name of the hero, the significance of a background fat cop character. Yet the principal joy of Headhunters is that it's an adult thriller that takes such delight in its turns and reveals that it is impossible not to get swept up in its runaway-train plotting and mischievous dark heart. Later in 2012, the Jo Nesbo machine rolled out the entertaining Jackpot, but it didn't plumb the depths and reach the heights of Morten Tyldum's film. The US remake is in the works (with Hitchcock's Sacha Gervasi). If it's half as fun, we'll be in for a treat.
IAN FREER

QUICK POLL Should Headhunters be higher or lower on the list?
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Have your say Agree with the list? Which sports movie would you add to the list? Register or login now to have your say.


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Your Comments

1 RE:
Avengers was a hugely entertaining movie, as was skyfall and there worthy of there positions! Should swap TDKR (the godfather 3 of the batman movies!) for the hobbit though! Read More

Posted on Thursday January 3, 2013, 17:07 by tfett

2 RE:
You're a funny guy Empire, I like you. Thats why I'm going to kill you last. my list 2012 1) Django Unchained 2) Flight 3) Rust and Bone 4) Cloud Atlas 5) Safety Not Guaranteed 6) DREDD 7) THE DARK KNIGHT RISES 8) Ted 9) Life of Pi 10) End of Watch Read More

Posted on Wednesday December 26, 2012, 14:35 by Oldb0y

3 RE:
Totally agree with seven28uk - The Grey was brilliant, totally sucked me in and I have never researched so much about wolves until after seeing that film! Cabin in the Woods, although different, not exactly a film of the year top 20. I have only seen half of the films on the list - Headhunters a good call. Avengers, hmmmmmmmmmm.... Read More

Posted on Thursday December 20, 2012, 14:52 by owenyunfat

4 RE: You Fools!
L: oxfordlover Seriously why isnt The Hobbit on the list, it was amazing, anyone who who complains about it is just hating on a successful film, just like Titanic all over again! What a load of idiotic nonsense! Read More

Posted on Thursday December 20, 2012, 13:49 by Filmfan 2


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