Friday, October 4, 2019

Top 20 Films of 2018

These are my favorite films from 2018. I'm trying to get caught up to the present day (late 2019) as this year has felt pretty dry, but I'm excited for the rush of good films that come out in the final months.

As always, counting down to #1. Perhaps I'll do descriptions at a future date.

20. On Body and Soul (Hungary, Ildiko Enyedi)
19. First Reformed (USA, Paul Schrader)
18. A Simple Favor (USA, Paul Feig)
17. Happy as Lazzaro (Italy, Alice Rohrwacher)
16. Widows (UK, Steve McQueen)
15. Beats Per Minute (France, Robin Campillo)
14. Sorry to Bother You (USA, Boots Riley)
13. Annihilation (USA, Alex Garland)
12. Burning (South Korea, Lee Chang-dong)
11. BlackKklansman (USA, Spike Lee)
10. First Man (USA, Damien Chazelle)
9. Sweet Country (Australia, Warwick Thornton)
8. A Quiet Place (USA, John Krasinski)
7. Leave No Trace (USA, Debra Granik)
6. The Favorite (UK, Yorgos Lanthimos)
5. November (Estonia, Rainer Sarnet)
4. Roma (Mexico, Alfonso Cuaron)
3. Hereditary (USA, Ari Aster)
2. A Star Is Born (USA, Bradley Cooper)
1. The Tale (USA, Jennifer Fox)

Runners-Up: Mission Impossible - Fallout, Searching, Mandy, You Were Never Really Here, A Fantastic Woman, The Shoplifters, Blindspotting, The Ballad of Buster Scruggs, Loveless, Foxtrot, Upgrade, The Hate U Give, Vice, The Death of Stalin, Revenge, Support the Girls, Spider-man: Into the Spiderverse, Capernaum

Overall: I might be in the minority, but I think 2018 was a great year for films! It was hard to cut off the runners-up list there were so many more I could have included. Two surprise actors-turned-directors made my top 20. Women had a solid showing. Almost every genre had something worth seeing. Some of this got overshadowed by easily the worst nominee winning the best picture Oscar. And while a politically dark time, Obama's impressively eclectic best-of-the-year list reminded me of better days.

I liked Estonia's gorgeous and original folktale-fantasy-horror November so much and it was so under-recognized that I've used only screenshots from it for this post. But other than that, I think I missed a lot of the more obscure and foreign films from 2018. Any recommendations?

Top 20 Films of 2017

Catching up the backlog of my top 20s! As always, counting up to #1. Sorry for the lack of descriptions at this time.

20. Soul Mate (China, Derek Tsang)
19. Baby Driver (USA, Edgar Wright)
18. Phantom Thread (USA, P.T. Anderson)
17. Personal Shopper (France, Olivier Assayas)
16. Mother! (USA, Darren Aronofsky)
15. Raw (France, Julia Ducournau)
14. The Square (Sweden, Ruben Ostlund)
13. Thoroughbreds (USA, Cory Finley)
12. The Meyerowitz Stories (USA, Noah Baumbach)
11. Birdboy: The Forgotten Children (Spain, Alberto Vazquez & Pedro Rivero)
10. The Nile Hotel Incident (Egypt, Tarik Saleh)
9. A Ghost Story (USA, David Lowery)
8. Dunkirk (UK, Christopher Nolan)
7. Call Me By Your Name (Italy, Luca Guadagnino)
6. Your Name (Japan, Makoto Shinkai)
5. Get Out (USA, Jordan Peele)
4. The Florida Project (USA, Sean Baker)
3. Three Billboards Outside of Ebbing Missouri (USA, Martin McDonagh)
2. Lady Bird (USA, Greta Gerwig)
1. Blade Runner 2049 (USA, Denis Villeneuve)

The Nile Hotel Incident
Runners-up: The Teacher, The Big Sick, It Comes at Night, Abacus: Small Enough to Jail, The Insult, The Lure, Wind River, My Friend Dahmer, The Beguiled, Coco, Summer 1993, Graduation, Creepy, Icarus

Overall: Perhaps not a stand out year for cinema, but a year that saw some rejuvenation from relatively fresh blood in the US and a few established names that continue to push themselves hard. Also maybe my favorite grieving scene: Rooney Mara eating an entire pie.

A Ghost Story