In the last 12 months, we’ve had an overflow of great films in every genre. The blockbusters were pretty good, the indies were top quality and overall cinema upped its games compared to last year. The movies I most enjoyed were powerful, daring and entertaining!
Below are the films that stood out from the pack. I always keep an open-mind so there might be a few entries you didn’t expect to make the list. Anyway, let’s cut the small talk and get on with it. Here are my favourite films of 2017.
10. Atomic Blonde
Not every film must be a work of art to warrant a place in a top ten list. Atomic Blond is a “balls to the wall” action flick, and it’s too cool and stylish to leave off here. Starring Charlize Theron as an MI6 agent in Berlin, this movie is pure gold. The action scenes are incredible! Much of the stunt work looks like it was filmed in one long take. It gives the movie an authentic feel that will please both action-junkies and film fans alike.
9. The Killing of a Sacred Deer
Here’s one of the most demented movies of the year. The Killing of a Sacred Deer is tough stuff, not for viewers who expect easy answers. Colin Farrell stars as heart surgeon Steven Murphy, and Nicole Kidman plays his glamorous wife Anna. It’s a tale of misery, tragedy and moral dilemmas. How the movie unravels is depressing, yet fascinating. It’s a rare movie that makes you feel a varied range of emotions. It’s also a pitch-black comedy with blunt statements about modern life.
8. Battle of the Sexes
Behind the crowd-pleasing in Battle of the Sexes is a reminder that unequal pay remains a problem, four decades after the film is set. It makes you ask if we’ve really moved on. This 1970s drama details the infamous tennis match between Billie Jean King and Bobby Riggs. It’s a story of conquering sexism and the result is entertaining and uplifting.
Logan is the revisionist comic-book movie I have wanted to see in god knows how long. Hugh Jackman is never-better as our favourite X-Man. This film arrived in cinemas to commercial and critical acclaim. It’s a grisly and sombre story, but one of the greatest superhero movies yet. It has a grounded approach where characters drive the action and drama. It’s ballsy, genre-bending and the perfect send-off for cinema’s longest-serving superhero.
6. Wind River
Taylor Sheridan’s Wind River is a heartland epic, which has more meaning than action. It’s about the murder of a young woman, starring Jeremy Renner and Elizebeth Olsen as Wildlife Tracker and FBI agent, respectively. The film may take its time to get going, but it’s profound with a powerful chill and cracking finale. Sheridan proves he’s a filmmaker to watch closely.
What can I say about Raw, other than it’s sickeningly brilliant? It’s a coming-of-age horror film that deals with a girl’s emerging taste for human flesh when she starts university. Despite the gore and blood, this is absolutely a celebration of female power. With a mix of horror and heartbreak, it’s a dark allegory for growing-up. If you missed this film, give it a watch, if you can stomach it.
This is the story of a giant pig and young girl caught in a crossfire between animal activism and human greed. I admire Ojka for many reasons. It’s a brilliant satire with a futuristic fairy tale in the mix. Its varied tones and pacing might be a lot to take in, but it’s among the most entertaining films of the year. A subversive, clever and whacky movie that makes a cold statement about the meat industry. Will it change the way you eat?
3. Good Time
Good Time embraces the “heist gone-wrong” concept as much as it subverts it. Robert Pattinson is unrecognisable as Constantine “Connie” Nikas. He’s a bit of scumbag and in a mad race against time to get his brother out of prison. One of the film’s biggest strengths is making you sympathise with an irredeemable character. The story moves at whizzing speed, with a late-night odyssey vibe. Daniel Lopatin’s score feels like it’s out of a ’80s film and it works wonders. By a country mile, this is the best crime-thriller of 2017.
2. Get Out
No horror-comedy did it better than Jordan Peele’s Get Out. This is a fearless, racially charged movie about a black guy’s meeting with his white girlfriend’s parents. Peele uses humour to reflect America’s racial tensions, in tongue-in-cheek fashion. It’s not a mindless scare-fest, as the film brings your attention to real fears and problems. It feels like right here, right now.
1. Blade Runner 2049
Blade Runner 2049 snatches the number one spot! I absolutely loved this film. We’re thrown down a rabbit hole into a sci-fi wonderland where there are secrets at every turn. Who is Ryan Gosling’s officer K? What do the off-world colonies look like? Is Harrison Ford’s Deckard a replicant? Like the original, the audience isn’t spoon-fed information. It flopped at the box office, but so what? Success and quality don’t always go hand in hand. It’s an audacious, smart blockbuster that’s destined to become a cult classic.
It’s clear the most memorable films of 2017 were personal and visionary. In this list, some of the films have commonalities – anti-heroes, moral dilemmas and mediations on identity – but they’re all focused on story and style. They’re also a keen reminder of the greatness of cinema as an escape and an art form.
Do you agree? What were your favourite movies of 2017? I’d love to hear your thoughts! Please comment below.