Another year, another top ten list. As I’m writing this, the Academy Award nominations are being announced, so let me say that this list is not influenced in the slightest by those announcements.
This list features a number of movies I have already reviewed, so I’m going to link to the past reviews if you’re looking for more in-depth reviews. I’ve missed some movies that have received a lot of critical acclaim (The Shape of Water, Lady Bird), while some others just missed the cut (The Disaster Artist, Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri), but here’s my Top 10 Films of 2017.
10. Star Wars Episode VIII: The Last Jedi
I guess the new Star Wars film is also a controversial film. Apparently, there are only two opinions of the film: you either love it or hate it. Obviously, I fall on the side that enjoyed this film immensely. I didn’t love everything about it, but I saw it twice in theaters, and I enjoyed it both times I had seen it. The characters of Kylo Ren and Rey took huge step forwards in this film and I loved being able to see Carrie Fisher and Mark Hamill share the screen one last time. I’m a Star Wars fan, but I recognize that these films aren’t the untouchable epics that people want to believe them to be. They’re popcorn films and I enjoyed watching this one. Read my full review of Star Wars Episode VIII: The Last Jedi HERE.
9. The Big Sick
My viewing experience with The Big Sick was a tale of two halves. I started watching the first half, and I enjoyed it for the most part. But as it was getting late, I decided to pick it up later. The part I turned it off is right where the character, Emily, was admitted to the hospital (Spoiler?). When I came back to the film, I was delighted to find that the second half makes this film even better, due in large part to the introduction of Emily’s parents, played by Ray Romano and Holly Hunter. They add a dimension that lifts this film up above most other romantic comedies and makes this one a film to see.
This is the first time that a movie I watched during 31 Days of Horror has made it into my top 10 movies of the year, but I loved Raw.
Raw is a coming-of-age story wrapped in a cannibal movie, sort of in the same way that Ginger Snaps wraps coming-of-age in a werewolf package. Like the title insinuates, there are some pretty visceral moments to this movie, but it never feels like it’s trying to shock you. It’s telling a very relatable story, a story about a young girl trying to figure out who she is personally and sexually, while telling a somewhat bizarre story of her budding taste for human flesh. It’s a great female-led horror movie that I couldn’t recommend more. Read my 31 Days of Horror review of Raw HERE.
7. Spider-Man: Homecoming
It takes a lot at this point for me to care about Spider-Man. The Andrew Garfield-led movies kind of made me question whether or not I ever needed to see a Spider-Man movie again. But then, Tom Holland made his first appearance in Captain America: Civil War and my interest was piqued once again. Spider-Man: Homecoming did not let me down.
Tom Holland is perfect as Spider-Man and as Peter Parker and the high school movie setting for the story is perfect for this character. It brings a fresh, never completely serious take on the character, which is refreshing after the two previous movies. Throw in a great villain performance from Michael Keaton and this became one of the most fun movie-going experiences of the year. Read my full review of Spider-Man: Homecoming HERE.
6. A Ghost Story
A Ghost Story is a very ambitious film, that tries to tackle the ideas of loss, time, and love in one of the most understated ways imaginable. It’s a heartbreaking film, completely told in the most minimal actions. People die, time passes, memories fade. In a way, it tackles similar themes as the next film does, but in a simpler way.
It’s amazing how much emotion an actor in a white bedsheet can muster out of the audience, and part of what makes this film work is the music and the camera work. Rather than traditional filmmaking techniques, the director chooses to hang on small moments, making them more impactful. This film says so much in the quiet moments and this became a film that I thought about for a long time.
Pixar always gets me; I don’t know how they do it, but they tap into my emotions better than anyone else. I didn’t cry at Coco, but I really wanted to.
I was late to the party with Coco, which is why I didn’t put out a full review of it, but this is a great addition to the Pixar canon, and I will say that it’s the best film they’ve put out since Inside/Out and arguably the most beautiful-looking film that they’ve ever put out. I love how vivid they make the afterlife in the film and the backdrop against Dia de los Muertos is a fun change of pace for Pixar.
In a year full of Marvel movies, it’s interesting that FOX finally bested the Disney powerhouse and that it finally comes in the “final” film for both Hugh Jackman and Patrick Stewart. What I love about this movie is that it bucks the trend of the traditional superhero film.
This is the movie that the Wolverine character should have had from the beginning. It’s gritty, violent, and pulls no punches. I guess we have Deadpool to thank for that, for allowing FOX to take the leap of putting out an R-rated comic book movie. Hugh Jackman and Patrick Stewart are great as always and the road movie aspect of it makes me love it even more. Read my full review of Logan HERE.
3. Get Out
Jordan Peele’s Get Out is a fascinating film. I’ve already had a long review of this film, but it’s one of the few films that I’ve seen twice in the past year and still holds up. It’s oddly funny, but also frightening, and it stirs an important conversation concerning the politics of race, class, and the less-than-overt racism that never gets addressed. It’s easy to point to an obvious racist character (let’s say Sam Rockwell’s character in Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri), but it’s an interesting view of more realistic racism that a guy like Jordan Peele probably has faced on more than one occasion. Read my full review of Get Out HERE.
Leading up to the September release, IT more or less became a large part of my life. I spent four months taking on the enormous novel and had such a great time with it, so I was greatly anticipating the new film. Suffice it to say, I was not disappointed.
What I love so much about It is that they absolutely nail the child characters. Every single one of them is fantastic, and while this aspect is arguably the strongest part of the book, they somehow manage to improve on the character dynamics of the children. Read my full review of IT HERE.
This should come as no surprise if you’ve kept up with the reviews that have been posted over the past year. Dunkirk wound up being the first film that I’ve ever given a perfect 10. Christopher Nolan’s direction carries this film and creates an experience that fully plants you on the edge of your seat. It’s a full film-going experience, especially in IMAX, which is the way I viewed it. It’s a movie done by arguably the best filmmaker in the game today, and this is one of his best. I’ve gushed over this movie already, so if you want to read my full thoughts, read my review of Dunkirk HERE.
And there you have it: my Top 10 Films of 2017. I’m sure I will see some movies in the next coming weeks that would have made this list, but I have to release this list at some point.
What do you think? What were some of your favorite films of 2017? Let us know on the comments below or on Twitter.