Lists

Top Ten Movies of 2016

2016 was a movie year with interesting dichotomies.  On the one hand, many studio films and sequels fell flat (particularly over the summer).  On the other hand, it was a fantastic year for independent cinema, surprise original genre hits, and social/political documentaries.  For me personally, it was the first year I attended the Sundance Film Festival, and managed to see a personal best 75 films released this year.  Of those films, here were my favorites (presented here as [spoiler-free] unless otherwise noted).
(more…)

The Best Movie Stuff of 2016

2016 has come and gone.  As many films have only just recently become available for the average viewer, I’m still putting the final touches on my “Top Ten” list.  However, I have once again put together a compilation of some of the best moments and elements in the year in film. This will be mostly [spoiler-free], unless otherwise noted.  Here are some of my favorite film things from 2016:
(more…)

The Best Films of Summer 2016

2016’s blockbuster season has been panned by many as one of the worst in recent memory. It seems like week after week, the big new release was both critically reviled and completely bombed at the box office. Despite the low lows, there were several bright spots that kept people headed to the cinema this summer. Here’re my [spoiler-free] thoughts on both the best and worst films of the summer. (more…)

Top 10 Movies of 2015

We’re two months into 2016, and I finally feel that I’ve seen enough 2015 films to put together a top 10 list (just in time for the Oscars).  More than ever, last year had a ton of variety in its excellent films, and the lists that I have seen do not have a strong overlap with one another.  I’ve watched 62 new releases from 2015 (by far a personal record), and yet there are still several high-profile films that I’ve missed and thus couldn’t include.  Without further ado, here is my list:

(more…)

Best of Sundance 2016

The most rewarding experience of Sundance is seeing what the next year of movies will look like.  Of the 120 feature films that were selected to screen at Sundance, I was able to catch 18 in a five day frenzy.  Almost all of them were really good, and several I would consider fantastic.  Here are some of the most exciting future releases of 2016: (more…)

The Best Movie Stuff of 2015

2015 has come to a close, and every film critic and blogger has already put together their “end of year” lists. Alas, I still don’t have access to a few of my most anticipated releases as of this writing (The Revenant and Anomalisa in particular), so I can’t make my full “top films” list yet (edit: I have now. It’s right here). However, I feel comfortable putting together a “top stuff” list.  Here are some of my favorite film elements of the year. (more…)

Summer 2015 Review: Women in Blockbusters

It’s no secret that women are quite often poorly represented in cinema, especially big budgeted summer blockbusters.  If you look at the last five summers, most years feature an embarrassing 1 to 2 major movies in which women have prominent roles.  Even when a woman is featured, she is often sexualized, one-dimensional, or in a supporting role (mother, daughter, girlfriend) to the main male protagonist.

Fortunately, the tides are starting to slowly shift, as Hollywood realizes that literally half of their potential audience are, in fact, women.  Overall, the summer of 2015 has been an improvement, with several movies featuring very well-written female characters.  Here’s a look back at some of the films of the summer, both the good and the bad. (more…)