Well, faithful readers, the Earth has made another trip around the sun, which means it's time for yet another post about my favorite movies that I watched for the first time this past year, regardless of the year they were released.
It seems as if this is the only time I'm ever going to update this blog, doesn't it? Well, the truth is, most of my creativity is currently being used for a podcast I host called Baconsale. In fact, on the latest episode, I not only talk about my favorite movies, I also talk about my least favorite. Give it a listen, won't you?
However, unlike other years' lists, such as 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, and 2017, this year's list is about 2018, which is totally different.
Shall we begin? Okay, then....
10. Avengers: Infinity War (2018)
Avengers: Infinity War does a good job of taking moving parts from the 18 previous Marvel films and putting them together into one, cohesive machine. Each superhero gets his or her chance to shine, and Thanos holds his own as the antagonist. This movie can't really stand on its own, but is has an epic feel, as well as enough humor and action to keep fans of this cinematic universe entertained.
9. Ready Player One (2018)
Ready Player One is more than just a nostalgia-fueled adrenaline rush. It has heart, a compelling story and ideas that don't seem too far from reality. The fact that this movie has amazing visuals and more Easter eggs than you can possibly catch in one viewing doesn't hurt, either. This film is a lot of fun for any fan of pop culture, and the book is even better!
8. I Confess (1953)
I Confess is a riveting drama with a powerful performance by Montgomery Clift as a man having a serious moral and theological crisis. O.E. Hasse also does a wonderful job as the antagonist, needling Father Logan (Clift) when he feels he has the upper hand. Aside from a few minor missteps, this is a top-tier thriller from Alfred Hitchcock.
7. I, Tonya (2017)
I don't know if I buy everything they're selling in I, Tonya, but I sure enjoyed the way they presented it. This movie gives a different perspective on the story we all heard about back in the 90s in a way that keeps you engaged and entertained. Allison Janney is horribly delightful, and Margot Robbie disappears into the role of Tonya Harding. This film is dark, funny and absolutely fascinating.
6. Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri (2017)
One of my favorite things about Three Billboards Outside of Ebbing, Missouri is that I had no idea what was going to happen. The cast is full of complex characters with evolving motivations and the story is unique and compelling. Also, despite the serious subject matter, this film is darkly comedic. Well done, Martin McDonagh.
5. Paddington (2014)
Paddington is a surprising delight. This movie has a charming quality to it that keeps you smiling almost the entire time. It's also quite clever, entertaining the adults just as much as the children. I was never really a big fan of Paddington Bear as I was growing up, but this film made me want to give the franchise another chance.
4. Upgrade (2018)
Upgrade surprised me. It’s an interesting mix of action and sci-fi horror, but it also has a pinch of comedy, which I wasn’t expecting. The clever cinematography and editing keep you engaged, and Logan Marshall-Green (who is NOT Tom Hardy) is able to carry the film mostly on his own. It’s a darker movie, but it’s also refreshing to see an original science fiction story.
3. Game Night (2018)
When it comes to dark comedies, Game Night plays its cards right. Jason Bateman and Rachel McAdams make a great team, and Jesse Plemons is absolutely hilarious. I found myself laughing out loud much more than I thought I would. The fun twists and turns do require some suspension of disbelief but, then again, so do most role-playing games. If you're in the mood for a laugh, I'd definitely recommend rolling the dice and watching this movie.
2. Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle (2017)
When I first heard they were making a sequel to Jumanji, I was against it. However, upon seeing it, I was pleasantly surprised. This is an entertaining movie. It builds on the original movie, but it can stand on its own, and the film creates a new set of obstacles for the heroes to overcome. Plus, it features plenty of action and laughs. Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle is a sequel done right.
And my #1 movie that I watched in 2018 was....
1. A Quiet Place (2018)
Wow! This film is intense! A Quiet Place is a smart and ambitious horror film unlike any I've seen before—and I've seen a lot of scary movies. It's consistently suspenseful, and it has a strong emotional core due to powerful performances from the cast. Listen, even if you're not a fan of horror, you should still give this sci-fi drama a chance. It's definitely worth watching.
I'd also like to give an honorable mention to There Will be Blood (2007), Lady Bird (2017), The Treasure of the Sierra Madre (1948), The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance (1962), The Greatest Showman (2017), Train to Busan (2016), It (2017), Paddington 2 (2018) and Searching (2018). These are the ones that stand out in a cinematic year that, well, wasn't that good.
Well, that's all for now. Like I said, listen to Baconsale if you want to hear my most-hated movies of 2018, as well. So until next year, faithful readers, keep on doing stuff and enjoying things. . .
Man, I really gotta come up with a better closing catchphrase.