2016 Yearly Review

Bellow is my list of my favourite to least favourite movies of the year. There are many elements which are considered when making this list including quality of the film, rewatchability and overall experience.

  1. Captain America: Civil War – The MCU is the franchise that turned me from a casual film fan to a full film fan. Because of that, this franchise is held at a very high point for me. To me, Civil War is the pinnacle of this franchise. It was everything I wanted out of a superhero conflict film that still managed to have a story line for Captain America and introduce new character into this universe. I’ve watched it multiple times already and each time it gets to the end, I can’t wipe the smile off my face.
  2. Rogue One – While the MCU is the franchise that changed my view on films, Star Wars will always be my favourite franchise. I loved Rogue One. Rogue One proved that we don’t need Skywalkers and Lightsabers to have a good Star Wars film. On top of that, it has changed the way I view A New Hope. Prior to Rogue One, A New Hope is the one I struggle to get through every time. I will now never watch A New Hope without coming straight off Rogue One, and for that, it’s a movie I am always going to hold highly.
  3. La La Land – My person pick for Best Picture. This film connects with me on a level that no other film had this year. While I personally enjoyed Civil War and Rogue One more as a movie experience, La La Land is the movie I’m going to remember the most out of 2016. While I’m not a big fan of musicals as a whole, I thought they used the musical elements so well to add to this story and message they are telling.
  4. Sing Street – By far the biggest surprise of 2016. Sing Street is going to go down as one of the best gems of 2016 and for a long time it was at the top of my film list along with Civil War. As a music fan in general, Sing Street has some of the catchiest music from movies this year and tells one of the best small scale personal stories I have seen in a long time.
  5. Swiss Army Man – This film is just wacky in every way possible, and is going to be the film out of 2016 that I think everyone should see. While I don’t think it is for everyone, if you are into this kind of humour, you will get a massive kick out of it and that is what I got with Swiss Army Man.
  6. Deadpool – Who thought an R rated comic book movie would work? Deadpool deserves a lot of credit for not only being a great film in general, but changing up this comic book genre that is always looking for new ways to reinvent itself. A movie full of great writing and great performances, I’m excited to see what they can do with a sequel.
  7. Arrival – One of the most refreshing films of the year. Arrival was a rare cinema experience that is much more than just watching a movie. It makes you think more than just what is on the screen but the world around you and the current situation in the world. While provoking those thoughts, this is a great sci-fi movie that goes against the typical grain of alien invasion movies.
  8. 10 Cloverfield Lane – Coming out very early in the year, this is a movie that has just stuck with me and I think a large part of that is the performance of John Goodman. I thought he was brilliant which was needed in such a villain centric plot. 10 Cloverfield Lane also tapped into the triller trend that I connect with where the triller/horror aspects are an addition to the story that is already being told.
  9. The Nice Guys – This is the film I want a sequel to the most out of 2016. This was a great surprise of a film. For a long time, this was my favourite straight comedy of the year. The chemistry between Crowe and Gosling was fantastic and they are a pairing, along with Angourie Rice, I want to see so much more of.
  10. Doctor Strange – Like Deadpool, this is a superhero movie that did something different and felt so different to our typical superhero movies. This was a movie that relied so much on the world that has been built by the MCU, however flips in on its head. Because I am such a big fan of the MCU, to see a film set in that universe but feel isolated in so many ways scored many points for me in enjoyability.
  11. Zootopia – Just missing out on my top 10, Zootopia is my best animated film of the year. While I am yet to see Moana, it has a tough job to do to overtake Zootopia. Zootopia was one of those kids films that transcends the genre of kids animation and becomes a strong film that has an incredible message for people from all ages. Apart from the message itself, I loved the humour and characters in this film and it is going to go down as one of my favourite animated films in recent times.
  12. Don’t Think Twice – This was one of those movies that as you are getting to the end, you start praying and hoping that it doesn’t end. I loved spending time with these characters. In many ways I wish this was a TV show that I could go back and spend time with 20 minutes every week. They had a chemistry I want to see progress and grow over time and get attached to. This cast chemistry is going to be remembered by me as one of my favourite chemistries on screen, either on the big or small.
  13. Edge of Seventeen – Rarely do we get a high school style film that hits more than the typical teenage audience. Edge of Seventeen did that. This is a film that has the feel and humour of our high school classics but is a story that people of all ages can related to in one way or another. I thought Woody Harrison was great in yet another mentor role, and I thought the lead, Hailee Steinfeld, is going to get a lot of attention after her performance in this film.
  14. Nocturnal Animals – While this movie was never in contention for my top 10, I really enjoyed this movie. It was a interesting way of story telling that I haven’t seen before and it was bolstered by some fantastic performances, including Jack Gyllenhaal and Aaron Taylor-Johnson.
  15. The Accountant – This kicks off the part of my list that I thought where good without being great. It’s the best way to describe The Accountant for me. While I enjoyed my time watching in it, I didn’t take much away from it after it was done. What stood out the most to me was the performance by Ben Affleck, which was my personal favourite performance by him this year.
  16. Hunt for the Wilderpeople – This was a movie I really liked for the most part. Where it slide down on my list was the middle section of the film. I felt for a while it was a little lost and I lost interest, however that has been on just one viewing. I thought Taikia Waititi’s style was very present like all his films, and it makes me extremely excited for what he can bring with Thor.
  17. Sully – I really like true stories and Sully was a pleasant surprise for me. I think what played into it was how unknown I was to the event itself. While I knew of the incidence, I had no idea about all the legal stuff behind it. I thought the direction was really good and the performance from Tom Hanks was fantastic.
  18. Sausage Party – While it was a bit of an overall let down from what we got in the trailer, I still really liked on a whole. I thought it pushed that genre of animation further than we have gotten and I thought for the most part the writing behind it was really smart and wasn’t the typical Seth Rogan swear off.
  19. War Dogs – Similar to Sully, this was a story I learned about through this film. What I really liked about this movie was the chemistry between Hill and Teller. Even during the lower part of the story, I thought their chemistry was always on point and a lot of credit should be given to them for what they were able to do. Without them, I don’t think this film would have been anywhere near as enjoyable as it was.
  20. Kubo and the Two Strings – This is one of those kids movies, along with Zootopia, that you want to circle and show to your kids in the future. I thought this was a great adventure film that has touching moments. I really loved the stock motion animation and with that aspect alone, this was a movie worth watching.
  21. The Lobster – This is a movie that I wanted to put so much higher on my list but it just seemed to keep sliding further and further down. As two halves, they were great contained stories, I just thought the was these two stories connected didn’t quite fit. Because of that it felt like a lopsided movie that needed a better flow between the two halves.
  22. The Jungle Book – This was a great film to see in the cinema, however within a week I had pretty much forgotten about it. The CGI and animation was amazing and it was fantastic to see what we can do in films, however that is what I think this film will be remembered as. I found the story itself to be a bit boring at parts, however it has been excited to see what they can do with this technology in something like the Lion King.
  23. Nerve – I put Nerve in the same teen movie category as franchises like The Hunger Games and Maze Runner. The difference I think though is that this was a self contained film that I don’t need to think about when the sequel is coming out. I thought the premise was really good and more than ever, felt very relevant to the times. I thought the performances from Dave Franco and Emma Roberts were great that capped off a decent teen film.
  24. The Little Prince – For what it was, this is a great Netflix movie to just put on when you’re at home looking for something to what. It was a story that kept me engaged for the most part, however didn’t quite hit me like some of the other animated movies from 2016 did.
  25. Hell or High Water – I have nothing against the film itself, it just wasn’t personally my type of film. I thought the performances were great and the storyline was interesting, but it just didn’t hit me the way it hit some other people.
  26. X-Men Apocalypse – From my one viewing of this film, I liked it. I didn’t love it, I didn’t hate it, I just liked it. I had a few story problems but I thought that some of the performances were solid, especially Fassbender who I thought were outstanding. What made me enjoy this film a bit more is that I felt it was so much better than some other superhero films we got in 2016.
  27. Finding Dory – I thought it was a decent kids movie that was a great addition to the Nemo franchise. However I don’t think it stood up anywhere near the original and won’t be something I’m going to be rushing to see in the years to come.
  28. Mike and Dave Need Wedding Dates – It’s your typical stupid comedy that I enjoyed watching in the moment and would problem watch again if it came on TV. However it isn’t much more than that.
  29. Bad Moms – Similar to Mike and Dave, a good comedy that I liked watching but won’t end up in my Blu Ray or even DVD collection.
  30. Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them – Kicking of the section of my list that I would consider that I disliked to hated, I was let down extremely by Fantastic Beasts. As a fan of the Harry Potter series, I saw this as nothing more than a cash grab that had some poor writing, uninteresting main story and some sketchy looking CGI characters. Now with it being reported that we are getting a total of 5 spin off films, Fantastic Beast has me worried for what is coming in the future from the Harry Potter franchise.
  31. Secret Life of Pets – The trailers sold a great premise that they didn’t stick to. While Sausage Party did a similar thing, what Sausage Party did great was still give as an great, fun story. Secret Life of Pets just gave us Toy Story with animals, in which Toy Story did it so much better.
  32. Suicide Squad – While it had some great performances and I consider it my favourite of the DCEU films, the compliments end there. This film was a muddle bother on and off screen and was one of the biggest let downs of 2016.
  33. Assassins Creed – As a fan of the game, I was able to get elements out of this film that I enjoyed, but again, as a fan of the game, this movie left me frustrated with what this could have been.
  34. Magnificent 7 – I checked out of this movie by the half way mark. It had an extremely week villain that I didn’t by into, the group of bandits that were formed had a bit too much luck on their action scenes and had great potential as characters but fell very short.
  35. The Killing Joke – This felt like it should of been a TV episode. This animated movie felt like 2 TV episodes blended together. It was 2 fairly decent episodes, but as a whole, I was let down. I love so many of the DC animated films which makes me wonder what this could have been.
  36. My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2 – While I don’t think this is as bad of a movie as many of the ones above it, I think this slipped down the list because it was quite forgettable. At this point of the list, rewatchability comes down to it, and even if this was on TV, I’d probably keep on flicking through the channels.
  37. Green Room – I saw this one at home and I think this really handicapped this film for me. I think if I saw it in a cinema, it could of had the potential to be a 10 Cloverfield Lane. That being said though, I thought it was a bit obvious from the start of who was going to get out alive and who was going to die, and that’s how it played out.
  38. Central Intelligence – It was meh. That’s all. I had a couple of laughs but that’s all it was. When comparing to some other comedies like Mike and Dave and Bad Moms, this fell really short to what it could have been.
  39. Don’t Breathe – I’m not a horror fan as such, but what makes me enjoy horror movies is that they have a strong story. This didn’t for me. I spent the whole movie questioning the logic in most of the characters decisions and ended up wanting the blind guy to kill them all by the end.
  40. Batman v Superman – Number 1 disappointing movie of the year. What makes it so much worse is that I will never watch this movie again because the Ultimate cut is so much better. While it didn’t fix all the problems, it isn’t anywhere close to a mess as the theatrical release.
  41. Allied – I was completely bored in this film. I didn’t care about the characters and you spend half the movie waiting for what the trailer promised to when we did get there is wasn’t anywhere as interesting to what it could have been.
  42. Now You See Me 2 – I really liked the original, it was a well contained heist movie that had a magic skin. This was not. This was unnecessary. It dumped everything I liked about the original and was no long a film about heists that used magic as a camouflage, and became a film that used “magic” to do the heist but never gave you a logic explanation to what was happening.

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