Honorable Mentions

  • The Killing of a Sacred Deer
  • The Edge of Seventeen
  • Moonlight

Most Overrated

  • IT. So much praise and the kids were solid but I just didn't find Pennywise creepy enough.
  • Dunkirk. Technically amazing but lacked any emotional connection to pull me in.
  • Beauty and the Beast. Sorry but the animated version shits all over this.

Biggest Bummers

  • Baby Driver. Amazing soundtrack but ultimately an empty experience.
  • Alien Covenant. I think Ridley might have put the nail in the coffin in the franchise.
  • The Last Jedi. Yes I was one of those that walked away somewhat disappointed, not excited like I had hoped.

A Ghost Story

Dir. David Lowery

It’s easy to assume looking at that poster that A Ghost Story might be a horror film. And for some, the slow, methodical pace might put them off but what David Lowery has constructed here is a Terrence Malik like existential take on the nature of eternity and the impact of grief and love over time. The cinematography is just exquisite too, with carefully framed shots and very little movement in the frame. Rooney Mara also has a five minute pie eating scene that almost feels voyeuristic and when you watch the film, you’ll understand why. Lowery has crafted an unforgettable, highly experimental and unique film that funnily enough stays with you long after the credits roll.

Watch the trailer

5.

Blade Runner 2049

Dir. Denis Villeneuve

When you’re standing on the shoulder of sci-fi giants (ie the original Blade Runner), you have your work cut out for yourself. Fortunately, when you have the immense talents of director Denis Villeneuve and cinematographer Roger Deakins in your corner, you’re well placed to deliver the goods where it counts. And Blade Runner 2049 manages to sit perfectly alongside the original in terms of sheer cinematic spectacle and storytelling. This film is absolutely gorgeous to look it, perhaps one of the most stunning visual experiences I’ve ever had in a theatre. The run time is the films only weakness but overall, this is easily the greatest sci-fi film I’ve seen in years.

Watch the trailer

4.

Get Out

Dir. Jordan Peele

Make no mistake, Get Out is a horror movie just not in the sense of films like Insidious or The Conjuring. Jordan Peele, who some might know from the hilarious Key and Peele series, crafts a clever horror satire about race. It’s also absolutely hilarious at times. Like all good horror movies, you’re a mixture of emotions, and although there are nods to the classics in the genre, Peele gives us a fresh 2017 take that I found hugely entertaining. The core cast are especially good, throwing themselves into this one but watch out for Daniel Kaluuya — he’s amazing in the lead role.

Watch the trailer

3.

Paterson

Dir. Jim Jarmusch

Watching press for The Last Jedi, I never get the sense that Adam Driver feels comfortable in the franchise juggernaut. However watching Paterson I feel like he was both born for the role as the quiet bus driver Paterson and feels completely comfortable in the world Jim Jarmusch has created. I never felt like I was watching a ‘performance’ per se, just real characters going about their lives and finding riches within their simple existence. All Paterson does is write poetry, hang with his girlfriend, walk his amazing dog, yet the small and very personal nature of it all feels comforting and life affirming. It's almost as if Jarmusch is telling us the first and last piece of art is the life you live so embrace it, no matter how seemingly humble it might appear to be.

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2.

The Big Sick

Dir. Michael Showalter

Beautifully written and performed, funny, heartwarming, sad, and just a joy to sit through, Kumail Nanjiani and Emily V. Gordon have made my favourite movie of 2017. You could have the opinion that this is a romantic comedy of sorts and you’d be partially correct but it’s also big on the drama aspect as evident in the title of the film. I think to make a winning combination of the two is incredibly difficult but I really couldn’t find a single fault. In the end, it’s all about chemistry — with the characters you watch on screen, between the characters themselves, and how it all fuses together. Fortunately The Big Sick balances it all perfectly and for that very reason, it stands proudly as my favourite film of 2017.

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