My Favorite Films of 2017

I’m keeping up the yearly tradition of sharing my favorite films of the year and so here is my list of favorite films for 2017. They are in no particular order, just in the order that I can remember them from the beginning of the year until the end of the year:

Kong: Skull Island

This film both reintroduced King Kong back to the big screen but also set up future films involving Godzilla and that line of monsters.  There was a tremendous cast with Tom Hiddleston, Brie Larson, Samuel L. Jackson, John C. Reilly & John Goodman and a great version of Kong.  I have high hopes for this franchise after 2014 Godzilla and now this one.

Guardians of the Galaxy: Vol. 2

The sequel that did not disappoint.  I blogged earlier this year about this film and how much I thoroughly enjoyed it.  It advanced the story while at the same time developing the characters without losing the charm that made it special.  Another great Marvel film.

Wonder Woman

Probably the first really good film in the DC cinematic universe, Wonder Woman had that heart and hope.  Gal Gadot embodies the role of Diana Prince/Wonder Woman.  The film (which is set mainly in World War I era) has a similar feel to the first Captain America film (which is my favorite Captain America film).  Superhero films that have heart and hope are the best ones and Wonder Woman is one of those.

Cars 3

The third film in the Cars franchise (and in feel more a direct sequel to the first Cars film) Lightning McQueen has to deal not only with young upstarts but his own mortality as an athlete.  It has a lot of feels like the first film as well as tells a good story on its own.

The Hero

This is a film that stars Sam Elliott as an aging actor best known for a role decades earlier as “The Hero”.  It’s a film that deals with fame, mortality, loss, love and life.  I blogged earlier this year more in depth that goes into more detail.

Dunkirk

Set during the heart of World War II, Dunkirk tells the story of one of the biggest rescue missions in history.  The British army was trapped in the city of Dunkirk and it took 800 civilian ships to save the day.  Christopher Nolan directed the film and it covers the land see  and air aspects of this battle.

Spider-Man: Homecoming

The first Spider-Man film in the MCU, Spider-Man: Homecoming was really well done.  Going back to Peter Parker in high school along with having it be the “Tony Stark Redemption film” was a good touch by Marvel Studios.

Blade Runner 2049

The sequel to the 1982 film, Blade Runner 2049 is one of the most visually stunning films I’ve seen.  Starring Ryan Gosling and Harrison Ford, the film is set 30 years past the first film.  Like the first film, it asks what does it mean to be human?

Marshall

Based on the true story of Thurgood Marshall, Marshall looks into the life of the future Supreme Court judge when he was a trial lawyer and the case of a Connecticut man accused of rape and attempted murder.  Chadwick Boseman was at his best again and the rest of the cast including Josh Gad, Sterling K. Brown and Kate Hudson stood out as well.

 

Goodbye Christopher Robin

A film based on the life of writer A.A. Milne and his family, Goodbye Christopher Robin is probably one of the most poignant and bittersweet films I’ve seen.  I grew up (and still do) love Winnie the Pooh and all the characters of the Hundred Acre Woods.  This film shows the ups and downs of the creation of those characters and the lives of the family around that.

Wonder

Wonder is based on the book of the same name.  I will go on record and say it is one of my favorite films ever.  The story of the Pullman family is such a heartwarming film and the story it tells is so needed in this time.

Coco

The second Pixar film released this year, Coco is a story about family and finding one’s place in the world.  It is centered around the holiday of the Day of the Dead.  It is such a lovely story and another example of the Pixar charm.

Darkest Hour

Darkest Hour looks into the right before and the first month of Sir Winston Churchill as prime minister of Great Britain.  Gary Oldman was spot on in the role of Churchill and the film as a whole was great storytelling.  It also fit in well with Dunkirk which also released this year since they both are set in this same timeframe.

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MoviePass Adventures: Month 1

I recently signed up for MoviePass.  For those that don’t know, MoviePass is a monthly subscription program that allows one to see a film (2D film) once a day in the movie theater.  I knew about the program for years back when it was first announced but the price point was something that wasn’t worth it.  However back in August, the company announced they were dropping the price down to $9.99 a month.  And as soon as the price jumped, there was a huge rush of people signing up.  I waited on signing up thinking it might be good to wait and see how things go.  I had a friend who signed up for it and liked it so I decided to do the same.

It took about a month or so to get my card.  How it works is you sign up and you get a debit card.  When you get to the theater you go on the app and check in to the movie you want to see.  You then use the debit card to pay for the movie.  The hardest thing was getting the card.  The initial wait time is supposed to be 5-7 days but given the huge demand it took a month (there are many that are still waiting for cards which has been a sticking point with some people).

I have now had the card for a month and have seen 8 films with it.  I thought I would document here the films I’ve seen and some brief thoughts on each one.

1.) Blade Runner 2049

The sequel to the original Blade Runner, I was looking forward to seeing this film.  Overall, I really liked it. Probably better than the original but definitely can feel and see the influences in it.

2.) Mark Felt

Based on the true story of Mark Felt, aka “Deep Throat”.  It tells the story of the man who helped expose the Watergate scandal.  It’s one of the best performances I’ve ever seen from Liam Neeson.

3.) Marshall

Marshall is another based on a true story.  This time it tells the story of Thurgood Marshall, eventual Supreme Court Justice, and the time he defended an accused rapist in Connecticut.  The cast is tremendous in this film and Chadwick Boseman ranks at the top of the list.

4.) Thor: Ragnarok

I did an entire blog post on my thoughts on Thor: Ragnarok so you can go check it out.  I will say I was reminded again how Phase 3 of the MCU has been way better than Phase 2.

5.) Goodbye Christopher Robin

This film is also a “based on a true story”.  It tells the story of A.A. Milne and his family.  Milne was the author of the Winnie the Pooh books and those books were based on his son Christopher Robin Milne and his interaction with the world.  The acting was tremendous and heartrenching.  Domhall Gleeson and Margot Robbie were great and Kelly Macdonald was a showstealer as well.

6.) Murder on the Orient Express

Murder on the Orient Express is the newest film adaption to the novel written by Agatha Christie.  I really enjoyed the film.  The ensemble cast was great and the visuals were breathtaking.

7.) Only The Brave

Only the Brave is another “based on a true story” this one of the Granite Mountain hotshots.  They were a firefighting group in Arizona that would be helping to fight some of the deadliest wildfires.  A great cast and a compelling story.

8.) Justice League

Justice League is the big DC superhero team up film.  Overall I thought the film was fine.  I enjoyed the cast and the performance for the most part was good.  It could’ve been better but on the flip side it could’ve been worse.  It was at least a step forward for DC in the film universe.

There are some films that are coming out in the next month or so that I’m excited to see so I’m sure my MoviePass will definitely come in handy.