2018 ends today and it has been a great year for film. Several great blockbusters and smaller films have been released and today, we’re going to discuss the 15 best movies of the year. I’d just like to note that I haven’t seen a lot of the Oscar movies like A Star Is Born, The Favorite, If Beale Street Could Talk, Vice and a few others. They may have made the list but unfortunately, I didn’t get a chance to see them.
15. Incredibles 2
The sequel we were all waiting for finally came out this year and I absolutely adored it. One of the things I loved about this movie was the family dynamic. I thought it played out better in this movie than it did in the last. All the stuff with Mr. Incredible taking care of the kids was great and Elastigirl was awesome in this movie. The animation and action is great and Jack Jack is an absolute scene stealer. The one issue I have with the movie is probably the villain. Screenslaver wasn’t as well written as Syndrome and the twist was very predictable.
One of the most overlooked films of the year. Tully is an extremely touching story that explores complex themes and Diablo Cody’s script is fantastic. Charlize Theron deserves an Oscar nomination and maybe even win for her performance. Mackenzie Davis is also great and has great chemistry with Theron. The twist is also similar to one in an extremely popular David Fincher movie that I won’t get into. Jason Reitman did a great job and this is one of the best of the year.
A couple months ago, this was in the top 5 for me. It may have fallen but I still absolutely adore this film. John Cho puts in an astonishing performance and the movie’s central mystery is tense and gripping. Right from the opening scene the movie shows humour and heart and I loved it. I do understand the complaints about the third act being a little rushed but overall, Searching was a great time at the theater.
12. The Rider
This movie is another one where I’m surprised it hasn’t got more buzz. Chloe Zao just got hired to do a Marvel movie yet not a lot of people are talking about this. She does a great job with directing this movie and the script and story feel extremely personal. The cinematography is beautiful and the score elevated the emotional impact of certain scenes. The performances felt genuine and the character relationships worked really well. The Rider is one of the best and most under appreciated movies of 2018.
11. The Hate U Give
The fact that this film isn’t getting more Oscar love is extremely frustrating to me. Amandla Stenberg is absolutely fantastic and I thought Russel Hornsby was fantastic as her father. The reasons to live reasons to die scene gave me goosebumps. Not all the performances work as Anthony Mackie is weak but the script explores serious themes and issues in America and the acting is still mostly great so I don’t understand the lack of Oscar love this is getting. That being said, I haven’t seen a lot of Oscar movies so my opinion could change. Right now, The Hate U Give is definitely one of the best films of the year.
10. Black Panther
Into the top 10 and we have Black Panther. This movie is one of the best superhero films of all time. Ryan Coogler did a great job directing this film and the performances from pretty much everyone is great. Michael B. Jordan stands out as Kilmonger. The character is easily one of the most complex villains in any movie and he had and extremely emotional final scene. The costume design, score, colour grading and cinematography are great but the visuals in the final act aren’t exactly the best.
Alfonso Cuaron’s newest film was an emotional rollercoaster. Yalitza put in a sensational performance and this movie was the perfect showcase for Cuaron’s abilities as a director. The film is gorgeous with stunning set design and cinematography. Personally, I thought the sound design was the best part. The first hour does drag but it is essential for the final 45 minutes to be as emotionally impactful and powerful as they are.
Spike Lee does an exceptional job directing this movie and the balance between humour and drama is flawless to me. The final montage is extremely powerful and extremely unsettling. John David Washington is also great and Adam Driver is definitely getting a nomination for best supporting actor. Overall, the film explores serious themes involving race in an effective manner as they balance the serious nature of the story with humour.
7. First Man
I’ve heard this movie get a lot of slack for being emotionally distant and I get that. Ryan Gosling as Neil Armstrong was emotionally reserved but that was how Neil Armstrong was as a person so I guess there was nothing Gosling could really do. However, Claire Foy is absolutely sensational as his wife and is deserving of several awards this season. The highlight of this movie is easily the technical aspect. Hurwitz’s score works extremely well and the overall sound design is sensational. The handheld camera was also great and the moon landing sequence alone is worth the full price of an IMAX ticket. All this makes the film a perfect display of talent for Chazelle as a director.
6. A Quiet Place
Who knew Jim Halpert could make a thriller this good? In all seriousness, A Quiet Place is one of the most intense movies of the year and is packed with insane performances from the kids, Emily Blunt and John Krasinski. Even though the movie is conceptually brilliant, the family dynamic at the heart of the movie is what made it so effective.
5. Mission Impossible: Fallout
I love Tom Cruise and what he’s done with all of the Mission Impossible movies. This one tops them all. It was intense from start to finish and the action was stunning. In my opinion, the final act action sequence with the helicopters is the best action set piece of all time. Tom Cruise is as great as he always is and the stunt work in this film is exceptional. The John Lark twist is predictable but that becomes a minor detail when everything else works as well as it does.
4. Bohemian Rhapsody
I was floored by this movie. i was expecting to like it but I had no idea I would enjoy the film as much as I did. Rami Malek is a lock for a Best Actor nomination and he has a huge chance of winning. I loved the story and the Live Aid scene is definitely the best scene in any movie this year.
3. Avengers: Infinity War
The MCU is really what got me into movies so to see it all come together like this was wild. This movie was an experience. Infinity War was packed with awesome moments and reveals and the final moments are incredibly emotional. I cannot wait for Endgame.
2. Bad Times at the El Royale
Bad Times at the El Royale was one of the most unique experiences I had with a movie this year. Drew Goddard’s camera work is incredible and the performances from each member of the cast is mind blowing. Cynthia Ervio blew me away with her performance and I can’t wait to see what she does next. The plot was very unpredictable and all the characters had fleshed out backstories. In my opinion, this is the most underrated movie of the year and everyone should see it.
1. Spider-Man : Into the Spider Verse
The best movie of the year is Spider-Man: Into the Spider Verse. I can’t think of anything I didn’t like about this movie. All the animation looks great and made it feel like a comic book put on the big screen. The character work on Miles Morales is insane and Jake Johnson’s Peter Parker might just be my favourite version of the character. The movie isn’t doing great at the box office so if you haven’t seen it yet, please do go watch what I think is the best movie of the year.