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8 Things We’re Thankful For

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Indie Sci-fi Film

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Big-budget blockbusters like The Dark Knight Rises and The Avengers are all well and good (except when they're not), but if you're like me sometimes you're just in the mood for something a little... smaller. Not to take anything away from the larger sci-fi movies that have graced movie screens over the last 12 months, but not being beholden to a big studio can leave filmmakers better able to tell stories that are more personal, more risky, and often more rewarding. I love a good popcorn flick, but speaking as an inveterate cinephile, there’s something about indie film (if done well, of course) that’s just... more valuable to me. And indie sci-fi?

Give me all the indie sci-fi!

2012 featured a slew of such films whose directors were able to do things a $250 million (plus the marketing budget!) studio epic probably wouldn't be able to, from building a story around a six-year-old girl (Beasts of the Southern Wild) to turning the horror genre on its head in a gory, inventive way (The Cabin in the Woods).

Movies like Citadel, ParaNorman, Robot & Frank, Wonder Women! The Untold Story of American Superheroines, and Attack the Block (OK, that last one was 2011, but I just saw it this year, and believe me, I'm very thankful I did) may not have had the audience of one of this year’s sci-fi extravaganzas, but they're every bit as worthy of your time. Sometimes even more worthy. I'm looking at you, Battleship. - Rebecca

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