2017 has come to an end, and it’s time to highlight some of the best movies of the past year. This has actually been a great year for movies, there were a lot of great ones throughout the year. I love every movie on this list, and just because it’s lower down doesn’t mean I didn’t like it. Also, I haven’t seen every single movie this year for various reasons, so there are a few movies that might have ended up on this list but couldn’t. Lastly, this is my personal list, your’s might be different and that’s okay.
Honorable Mentions: (Alphabetical Order)
- John Wick: Chapter 2
- The Lego Batman Movie
- Logan Lucky
- Spider-Man: Homecoming
- Thor: Ragnarok
- Wonder Woman
#10: Wind River
This movie flew completely under my radar until I rented it about a week ago in preparation for this list. Taylor Sheridan proves he can direct a film just as well as he can write one. Wind River is an incredibly suspenseful film that pulls you into its setting through a captivating story, well-written characters, and amazing dialogue. Elizabeth Olsen is fantastic, and Jeremy Renner gives the best performance of his career. The two of them have great chemistry, making an interesting dynamic for the movie. Taylor Sheridan balanced story and mystery with characters to make a directorial debut that makes me excited to see what he makes next.
Read my review here! I didn’t think I would love this movie as much as I did. I’m usually not a fan of horror movies, but It had gravitating characters that made it special. All of the kids’ performances are great, they have bright futures ahead of them. Their relationships are what set the movie apart from other horror movies. Bill Skarsgård plays one of the best movie villains of the year in Pennywise. The character could be seen as over the top, but Skarsgård went all the way and created a haunting character. It is one of the most unique horror movies in a long time because of its surprising amount of heart and its terrifying villain.
#8: Get Out
Get Out was one of the most surprising movies of the year. No one expected Jordan Peele’s directorial debut to be this creative and socially relevant. It works as an enjoyable horror movie, but when you peel back the layers the entire story is a metaphor for racism in today’s world. Daniel Kaluuya gives one of the best performances of the year, and Allison Williams pulls off a tough job because of what she has to do near the end of the movie.
When you find out what is really going on, the reveal is crazy and creepy, and I loved it. Also, if you sit back and think about the movie and look at interviews with the director, you’ll see how genius Jordan Peele is with his parallels between racism and the story, and also callbacks throughout the movie. I can’t wait to see what Peele directs next because this movie is terrifying while giving social commentary.
Read my review here! Christopher Nolan is one of the best directors working today, and Dunkirk proves that. Unlike most war movies, Dunkirk is solely based on the experience. Many war films have character-based scenes during the quieter moments, but this movie doesn’t give the characters time to get to know each other because in reality there wouldn’t be time for that.
From the first scene, you are locked into the story and you feel like you’re trapped with them on that beach. Nolan’s directing is masterful, and if you saw it in IMAX you know how well he used the IMAX cameras. The story is told in a very interesting way that enhances the movie and adds another element to it. Dunkirk is a great war movie because it accurately represented the intensity and hopelessness of this one event.
#6: War for the Planet of the Apes
Every trilogy needs a good finale, and War for the Planet of the Apes delivers on that and does more. Despite the title, this is actually a very character based movie. Caesar is fighting to protect his kind while trying to find peace with the humans, and you see some flaws in his leadership that make him a more compelling character. Andy Serkis deserves an Oscar nomination for his work even with the motion capture because every facial movement on Caesar is Serkis, and he gives a powerful performance.
There are also many themes about the inevitability of humans to destroy themselves through war, they don’t focus on it much, but it was handled very well. This movie is a satisfying conclusion to the Apes franchise and proves that it’s one of the best trilogies of all time.
#5: Star Wars: The Last Jedi
Read my review here! Star Wars: The Last Jedi is one of the best Star Wars movies yet. Rian Johnson took a lot of risks in the story and the vast majority of them land. He took some of the criticisms from The Force Awakens and improved on those in The Last Jedi. They give the characters more development, and they expand on certain elements of the universe as a whole, specifically the Force. Mark Hamill plays a very different version of Luke Skywalker than we’re used to, and it ended up being his best performance of the character. The Last Jedi is the Star Wars movie I didn’t know I wanted and is a great addition to the franchise.
#4. The Big Sick
The Big Sick is Kumail Nanjiani’s story about how he met his wife, Emily Gordon, while dealing with his parents wanting him to have an arranged marriage. Kumail Nanjiani is hilarious in this movie, he is a real talent to watch out for. He and Zoe Kazan, who plays Emily, have great chemistry. They didn’t seem like they were acting, I felt like I was watching two real people falling in love. There were some great themes in this movie that people of all religions can relate to about pleasing your family while doing what makes you happy. The Big Sick is the most charming movie of the year with a beautiful relationship that feels real and believable.
#3: Blade Runner 2049
Blade Runner is one of the most influential sci-fi movies of all time, and also one of the best. Denis Villeneuve had a tough act to follow, and Blade Runner 2049 ended up being even better than the original. Roger Deakins’s cinematography is gorgeous in every shot, this is the best looking movie I’ve seen in a long time. The story is slow-moving, but in a great way that makes it completely enthralling. They build on the original film to create a realistic future for that world and with that, there are more concepts that have evolved to explore, which is what makes it better than the original.
#2: Baby Driver
Baby Driver is fun and fast-paced, it never slows down and there are no dull moments. Edgar Wright made a musical without words with the music playing a significant role in the movie. Whether the beats are matching up with gunshots, or the lyrics are graffiti on the walls, he always tries to find something new to do with the songs. Ansel Elgort is awesome as Baby and so is the rest of the cast.
The movie has a great ensemble cast, even though Doc uses a different team for each job. Many people have problems with the romance between Baby and Debora, but I liked it a lot, it was really sweet and fit the style of the rest of the movie. Baby Driver is the most stylish and creative movie of the year, it’s it’s a lot of fun and hit all the right buttons for me.
Logan is a comic book movie that feels like a true film. It’s the first R-Rated X-Men movie, (excluding Deadpool) and while the action is bloody and brutal, the rating really comes from the mature themes in the movie. It’s really about Logan getting much older and what comes with that like his diminishing healing factor, having to care for his father figure, Charles Xavier, and him being a father to Laura. The action in this movie is what Wolverine fans have been waiting for, it’s very R-rated and they don’t hold anything back.
While the action is great, this movie is mainly character based, Hugh Jackman gives his best performance as Logan yet, and Patrick Stewart is Oscar-worthy good. Dafne Keen is a great new talent as Laura, she played a fierce character and was one of the best parts of the movie. Logan is an emotional end to Wolverine’s story about one of our favorite heroes becoming old and having to risk everything to protect a young girl. It’s one of the best comic book movies of all time, and the ending still makes me emotional after multiple viewings.
That’s my list! I didn’t get to see many of the Oscar contenders this year because they either weren’t playing near me, or I just missed them because of other obligations. 2017 was a truly great year for movies and I can’t wait for 2018.
What are your top 10 movies of 2017? Put your lists in the comments below!
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