2018 started with such promise, but much like that one Thanksgiving where I attempted to make beef wellington for my loved ones, it ended with decimated expectations, disillusionment in the promise of good things, and a round of pumped stomachs. Though a few worthwhile releases certainly caught me by surprise, by and large this was a tedious and mediocre year marked by bitter disappointments, even where my beloved Indie market was concerned. Many of the films I had high hopes for fell flatter than grandma after that aforementioned Thanksgiving dinner, while other movies I had no expectations for whatsoever taught me to never again ask “How bad could it possibly be?” unless I’m planning on French kissing a pencil sharpener.
Come with me on a journey through time and space, to the world of 2015 –
When I looked back on 2015’s release schedule in preparation for this saunter down memory lane, I was frankly appalled at how dismal most of the year really was, especially since I actually once compared it favourably to 2016 when penning that year’s Top Ten. There was a lot of garbage and mediocrity this year that I had apparently repressed until now. That being said, most of the films on the Top Ten itself still hold a special place in my heart and in my film library, but everything else? Cinematic flotsam and jetsam. Incidentally, this was one of those rare years where I decided to watch (nearly) every movie nominated for Best Picture, so make of that connection what you will.
When I looked back on 2017 in preparation for this list, I realized I actually liked most of what I saw. Maybe it was a rare quality year for cinema (unlikely), or maybe I’ve just become increasingly scrupulous about the films I choose to view (bang on). Whatever the case, after slotting the eight films I loved enough to purchase on DVD, I found it was a bit of a challenge to sort through the plethora of other films I just sort of liked in a ‘Good 7’ kind of way but don’t harbour much enthusiasm for. This pool of films included The Founder, John Wick 2, War for the Planet of the Apes, Wind River, Spider-Man: Homecoming, and The Meyerowitz Stories, which were all certainly good but not good enough that I’d brand any of them Top Ten material.
Strictly speaking, this list kick-started this entire venture. I had written it on a Sunday afternoon in January of 2017 in a fit of boredom and posted it to Facebook on a whim — the positive reaction from my peers inspired me to take a dip into the sacred waters of scholarly thought and emerge as the SnootyFilmCritic, ready to take on the film industry with naught but my laptop and an intense disdain for stupidity. I post it here affectionately as the post that started it all.
I recall 2016 being a tedious year for films. 2015 satisfied my palate with the likes of Mad Max, Sicario, It Follows, Ex Machina, Kingsmen, Inside Out, and the criminally underrated Krampus, among others, but alas, the barren, arid entertainment wasteland that was 2016 forced me to scour every Indie nook and film fest cranny for something actually good to occupy all ten slots on my annual roster. Continue reading 2016 Top Ten List