Friday, March 8, 2024

The Top Ten Films of 2023.

Most people only saw two movies this year, and I don't blame them. As always, there were good movies, but (with a few exceptions) it took some work to find the ones worth remembering. Of course, the Internet wants you to think that 2023 was the greatest year for film since 2019, but the Internet is 90% bots and probably still believes in trickle-down economics. 2023 was maybe a better year for film than 2021. My hottest takes of the year are that no one would care about Killers of the Flower Moon if it were directed by a normal person, and Oppenheimer might be better than Tenet. It's close. Keep in mind that I didn't watch any animated films or documentaries, and I once made the ridiculous claim that 2010 was a bad movie year, so my opinions are questionable.

Friday, March 3, 2023

The Top Fifteen Films of 2022.

After watching 160 movies from 2022, I can confidently say it's been the best year for movies since 2021. There were probably fifty movies released that I wouldn't be mad to see in a top ten list—and while this is partially due to there only being a handful of clear standouts—sometimes it's good enough to be mildly amused relatively often. With that said, while I'm clearly the ultimate authority for cinematic quality, make sure you don't believe everything you read on the Internet. Every movie in existence now gets an 80% or greater on Rotten Tomatoes except for Don't Worry Darling (okay, they got one right), and I'm really sick of getting tricked into watching dull movies about abortion, historical figures, or spiraling alcoholics who won the lottery once. This was at least the year I put my foot down and refused to watch the Gaspar Noe film, so you might say I'm on the path to making better choices.

But wait, this is supposed to be a "best of" list, not an airing of grievances. I watch the trash so you don't have to. If you're a fan of donkeys, cannibalism, or locking people up in your basement; it was a great year for cinema. Do you love films with naked elderly people? It was a great year for you too. How do you feel about mediocre horror films? Because there were a lot. There are always a lot; maybe that's not the best example. Okay, enough about your kinks. Let's talk about mine.

Sunday, March 20, 2022

The Top Ten Films of 2021.

Much to my disappointment, movies have started being released in theaters again. As I now refuse to leave my house for any reason; I convinced myself to wait until Licorice Pizza, Parallel Mothers and West Side Story were released on streaming before finalizing this list. Spoiler Alert: West Side Story was somehow the best movie of that group, but I'm still going to compare it to the time Gus Van Sant remade Psycho with Vince Vaughn. Critics don't agree with me because they're too nervous to scold legends, but 2021 was the year of big misses by big directors. Paul Thomas Anderson (Licorice Pizza), Pedro Almodovar (Parallel Mothers), and Guillermo del Toro (Nightmare Alley) should all be ashamed of their 2021 films. Joel Coen made a very pretty version of Macbeth but's still Macbeth. Ridley Scott's The Last Duel was actually good, but its quality is overshadowed by my need to mock him for being angry that no one went to see his 100 million dollar medieval rape movie. Unfortunately, we didn't get a movie from Denis Villenueve this year, but he did release a pretty good two and a half hour trailer for Dune. At least we were able to rely on the never-changing Wes Anderson, who once again released the exact same movie he's been making over and over again for the last ten years.

But as always, I found some films I liked. Maybe you'll like them too. Four and two halves of them are  in English for those of you who can't read. Before we get to the top ten, let's talk about my should-have-been fan-favorite Oscar vote, and give the annual reminder that all animated movies and documentaries are good, so I didn't bother watching them.

Saturday, February 20, 2021

The Top Ten Films of 2020.

I usually post this right before the Oscars, but this year they've been pushed back to late April—which means the Academy is an even bigger procrastinator than I am. With that pushback also comes the expansion of eligibility requirements to films released through February 2021. I don't like to pretend 2020 didn't end in December, so some of the Oscar nominees don't qualify for this list. I have very strict requirements for how I define what films were released in 2020 (I check IMDB). So, since Minari was released in 2021, maybe we'll see it on next year's list (we probably will). Like most of you, I didn't see a single 2020 movie in theaters and I probably wouldn't have gone even if I could have. Thankfully, due to Covid, you can now watch movies at home for approximately $40 instead of going to the theater, which seems like an affordable, sustainable model.

Anyways, some movies came out in 2020. Hopefully, you watched some of them since you weren't allowed to do much else. Here's a list of my favorites, as well as the rest of the riff-raff.

Thursday, February 6, 2020

The Top Fifteen Films of 2019.

Sometimes, when narrowing down a top ten list, it becomes overwhelming and you decide to cheat and make a top fifteen instead. There were a lot of strong films in 2019; and while I am extremely annoyed that a lot of them barely got limited December releases, soon we will have successfully killed off the theater industry and we'll be able to watch the Oscar-grabs on Netflix instead of only in LA and New York. Not that I want the industry to die—it's just going to happen and I've accepted it. Even Scorsese is sold on Netflix, and he won't even watch a superhero movie. I suppose I'll quit rambling now and get to it.

Tuesday, December 31, 2019

Top 50 Films of the Decade.

This is the first decade in which I was an adult the whole time, and I'm not sure if that makes me more or less qualified to arbitrarily rank films. I do know that I watched over eight hundred movies this decade and liked at least three of them, so I at minimum have a thorough library to pull from. I also put out a top ten list every year this decade so I've had an easier time keeping track of the films I watched. I wish I'd had that frame of reference when haphazardly throwing together my top 50 of the 2000's ten years ago. It's fun to look back on those lists and wonder: What was I thinking when I ranked Chi-Raq my favorite film of 2015? Why did I initially have so much hatred towards 2010? In what year did I finally stop putting two spaces after a sentence?

So here are my top fifty films of the decade. These are the movies that have floated around in my head since their release. Some of them I didn't even initially like. Of course, there are plenty of terrible movies that have floated around in my head too, but I've spared you those. You'll notice a general lack of 2019 films, and I promise I've seen most of them. The only one that needs to be on this list is present, although maybe given some time a few more may have snuck on. There are also no documentaries or animated movies, because you don't need me to tell you those are good. Finally, there aren't any superhero movies (although Logan or Guardians of the Galaxy may have been close) because I tend to side with Scorsese—they're fun but forgettable. To be fair, I also feel that way about most of Scorsese's movies too.

Sunday, February 17, 2019

The Top Ten Films of 2018.

2018 was the year I realized no one is going to watch a single movie I recommend unless it's available to stream on Netflix or Amazon Prime. I can't really blame them. I saw 120+ movies in 2018 and didn't watch a single one in theaters—as going out in public is nearly as terrifying as the people you encounter there. And while the number of streaming services is exhausting (and only getting worse), take solace in the fact that nearly everything is eventually available to rent from our new overlords at Amazon. That being said, I know you're still more likely to watch The Office for the eleventh time rather than throw Bezos another $4.99, but I'll do my best to put together a list for you. To be honest, that's not even true, because this list is for me and you probably won't like any of these films. Go watch The Office while you still can.

So let's talk about some movies you've either already seen or are never going to see. We'll start with some random musings before we get to the mostly arbitrary rankings. As always, this list does not include animated films or documentaries, and ties go to the movies I want to write about.