Share your picks or any lists you like.
Share your picks or any lists you like.
This year sneakily became one of the best years for films in awhile for me. In a time where Rotten Tomatoes has basically fully bridged the gap between the loudest group of consumers and the moviemakers themselves, it’s hard to get a movie nowadays by a big studio that marches to the beat of its own drum. I mean last year the “gutsiest, riskiest” blockbuster was Suicide Squad, which ended up being tepid, warm milk in terms of risk. Our blockbusters are more “exactly what you guys ordered” due to the amount of clear communication between both sides now, yet somehow this year had a few gems that went completely against the grain. This year had a lot more uncompromising movies than like the last few years combined in the blockbuster department. A lot of films that seemed to be permanently grounded in their expected routines (Logan, a superhero movie, and The Last Jedi, a Star Wars movie), basically did the exact opposite of what the basic moviegoer expected. I had a lot of respect for the bigger movies of this year, which hasn’t been the case for maybe the last decade.
My top 5 favorites of the year go in order:
Despite me not personally liking them as much, other movies like Baby Driver, Kuso, Get Out, and Logan really broke barriers in terms of expectations as well. I mean when you go to see a superhero movie, you know what you’re paying for. Same with a scary movie. However, these forward movies are huge steps forward to me.
Others I thought were pretty lukewarm, typical movies of the Rotten Tomatoes era:
As for the films I really liked this year, it’s shocking to look back and realize almost all my top 5 were blockbusters. That doesn’t happen for most people who really like movies, including me, who generally hates most blockbusters (still think Avengers is one of the worst films of the decade).
Quick rundown of each movie:
This movie was like one giant middle finger to the habitual expectations the Star Wars fanbase has accrued over the years since 1977. The whole time I was watching, I envisioned JJ Abrams losing his mind as he himself witnessed all the stupid, cliché plot setups and typical Star Wars jokes he forged from Episode VII crumbling down permanently. No matter how much he probably doesn’t want to, he has no choice but to work off where The Last Jedi left off. The entire hard-driven theme of the movie is to basically burn everything until you have a total clean slate again, which is exactly what it does to the franchise. If you need more proof, consider the main quote they keep using from Kylo Ren in advertisements: "Let the past die. Kill it, if you have to. It’s the only way to become what you were meant to be."
That’s exactly what Rian Johnson did. Killed it.
A Nolan film that, fortunately, I don’t think will be swallowed by the mainstream moviegoers who praise it because it’s the “smartest” movie they’ve ever seen (still can’t stand Inception and Interstellar mainly because of the leagues of dumbasses who wouldn’t shut up about it. No, it is not the most elite movie ever made. No, you don’t look smarter for loving Interstellar). I think, like Rian Johnson did with The Last Jedi, Nolan didn’t want to make a movie to impress us with HIS vision. He wanted to be more of a medium between us and the film, leaving us with it and forgetting it was even made by him. This and The Dark Knight are probably Nolan’s films that don’t remind you the entire time that you’re watching one of HIS films. It just feels like a movie, not a NOLAN movie. That, the sounds, and the color design were three of the reasons why I particularly enjoyed it.
Broke barriers. I don’t know how a movie like this was made in 2017. Even more insane was that it was wide released in all theaters in 2017. Basically the total opposite of the Rotten Tomatoes era, it is batshit insane and doesn’t care at all if anyone likes it. It’s the type of movie you never expect to be made anymore, a film with a big budget and a seriously challenging script; an extinct combination nowadays. Seeing it opening night was a trip, as there was no talk about it at all yet, so everyone in the theater was going in totally blind. Some people walked out disgusted, saying that was the worst movie they ever saw. Other people thought it was amazing. These reactions are common to hear after seeing a movie, but the difference between people hating this movie versus people hating another typical 2017 movie, was that no one was calling it boring. That’s the difference. If I ever hear people say they hated a movie after walking out of the theaters, they say it sucked because it was boring or stupid. No one even hinted that Mother! was boring, and to me, it did its job for that exact reason.
I’m a huge fan of Pixar, and this one is predictably another great release. Around 2 years ago they announced Lee Unkrich would be at the helm, and I’ve been patiently waiting ever since. If any of Pixar’s original concept films are helmed by Pete Docter or Lee Unkrich, it’s basically a surefire win for me. Not to mention the gorgeous animation.
It’s a movie that’s in love with the art of movies, and it does the entire art form sincere justice. The attention to detail is absolutely staggering; from the individual specks of pollution in the atmosphere as they fly at night, to the seawater stains on K’s pants after the sea wall scene, there is just so much to look and marvel at in terms of craftsmanship. After I saw it the first time, I couldn’t understand how it didn’t take lifetimes to make. I could probably write a post twice as long as this one about this movie alone, so I’ll cut it short. I think over time people will realize just how awe-inspiring this movie is. It really was one for the books of cinema, and it exists in its own world of skill and magnitude.
Also, I still have yet to see Rat Film. I’m sure that would’ve pushed into my top 5.