2017 is in the rear view, but we haven’t finished talking about it just yet. If you caught our Best of the Best of 2017 episode of Geek Hard last Friday, you got to hear my (as well as the rest of the GH panel’s) Top 5 Picks for the best films to grace screens of various sizes. Here now is my picks for the Ten Best Movies of 2017. There’s been a lot of great stuff that’s come out this past year but only so many can be touted as the best. So let’s take a look at my picks:
#10 – Split
I never thought that M. Night Shyamalan would make a film as good as Unbreakable. Turns out I was wrong. James McAvoy’s performance is fantastic. The story is nuance yet simple. The end result is movie that’s both creepy and intriguing. Can’t wait to see where they go with this.
#9 – The Shape Of Water
This movie tugs at the heartstrings, giving us the most personal experience at the cinema this year. The tale of a mute woman who finds love and acceptance from a creature from the deep is one that’s oddly needed for this day and age. The story takes place in the fifties and focuses on the “outcasts” of that time. A woman without a voice gets to tell her story. The marginalized take centrestage in the main and supporting roles. It’s not surprisingly the feel good movie of 2017.
#8 – Wonder Woman
DC Comics finally made a good superhero film! Yay! What’s even better is that the film had a female lead and an empowering message of hope. That’s a message that is greatly needed in this day and age. Gal Gadot and Chris Pine’s performances were bang on and with the exception of one CGI villain in the third act, the action was spectacular. DC should just make Wonder Woman films from now on.
#7 – Spider-Man Homecoming
Hands down, the best superhero film of the past year. Much like Wonder Woman, Homecoming brought some light to a very dark superhero world. It also gave us the best villain in a comic book movie in a long time. It was a great balance of action and comedy and heartfelt character moments. With great power comes another great Marvel movie.
#6 – Kong: Skull Island
The retelling of the discovery of King Kong was probably the most underrated film of the year. Kong was amazing and bad-ass, supporting by a brilliant ensemble cast that all bring their A-game. This battle of man vs. Animal set against the fallout of the Vietnam war looks amazing and has just enough depth to rise above any silly adventure tropes. It’s also my favourite film involving Apes from 2017. (Sorry War for the Planet of the Apes, but it’s true.)
#5 – Atomic Blonde
While Spider-Man Homecoming was my favourite superhero movie of the year, it wasn’t my favourite comic book film. That honor goes to Atomic Blonde. This gritty spy thriller set in late eighties Berlin was just what I wanted. Charlize Theron and director David Leitch toy with the audience, lulling us into a false sense of security where we think we know exactly what the deal is. Then, we’re spun like a dime and a new wrinkle of the story is revealed. A good, ol’fashioned spy story. What’s not to love?
#4 – Their Finest
I know folks loved the visual style of Christopher Nolan’s big budget epic from the summer, but this is the film about Dunkirk that I enjoyed the most this year. A pair of screenwriters played by Gemma Arterton and Sam Claflin must write a film that will raise Britain’s spirits during the London Blitz of WWII. With another great performance from Bill Nighy, it’s one not to be missed.
#3 – Free Fire
A group of amazing character actors playing hardened criminals have a shoot out for an hour and a half in a warehouse set in 1970’s Boston. That sentence alone should make you want to see this film. When a gun deal goes sour, there’s nothing left to do but shoot. The soundtrack is also great. Fun with guns. ‘Nuff said.
#2 – Baby Driver
Speaking of action with a kick-ass soundtrack, this film has it in spades. Edgar Wright makes a near two hour music video about a getaway driver with a hearing impairment and a heart of gold. With great performances by Jamie Foxx, Jon Hamm and Kevin Spacey, this film hits all the crime movie beats but in new and interesting ways. It’s a better film experienced than explained. And that soundtrack……bang on.
#1 – The Big Sick
I had no doubt in my mind that I would love this film from the mind (and real life experience) of Kumail Nanjiani and Emily Gordon. I didn’t know how much until I saw it. The story of how they became a couple while one of them was in a medically induced coma is very unique. It’s also a film that runs the gamut of jokes, cries, and deep reflection. It was the film I didn’t know I needed until I saw it.
So there you have it. My picks for the Ten Best Films of 2017. Let me know what your picks are by leaving a comment.
If you’re gonna geek out, GEEK HARD!