The quality of films in 2016 was, in more ways than one, highly uneven. I think this is the worst year for superhero films in a long time. Big directors and big name actors had a mixed year as well. 2017 was saved by indies and new ideas. This list below outlines the first half of my 10 Favorite Films of 2016. Not the Best films, but my favorites. There is too much content to include for one article. First half now, second half later! Ready? Let’s dive in!!!!
10. Blair Witch
‘Blair Witch’ is a horror film that commits to its mythology and while it can be silly, I admire it for it’s ability to bring some truly creative set pieces to a genre (Found footage) that has run it’s course.
9. The Witch
The second film on my list also includes a witch. That being said, you’re not going to find two films with less in common than my #9 and #10. ‘The Witch’ focuses on a family in the 1800’s forced to move into the wilderness of New England from the safety of their village. The family is devoured by dark forces, and, in one of the best slow burn experiences of the year, succumbs to everything it is that they fear. ‘The Witch’ is tense and memorable and a fine addition to my list.
8. 10 Cloverfield Lane
’10 Cloverfield Lane’, up until it’s release date, was a mystery. My wife and I went to see it mostly blind to it’s actual premise. Set in some kind of shared universe with 2008’s ‘Cloverfield’, this film focuses on a young woman thrust into a dangerous kidnapping situation and forced to find the truth, no matter how strange it actually is. With an incredible cast and a terrifying turn by acting legend John Goodman, ’10 Cloverfield Lane’ should not be missed.
‘Moana’ is the newest entry into Disney’s animation empire and, like so many others, ‘Moana’ is a masterpiece. It has some of the most gorgeous animation I’ve seen in years, coupled with a heart warming story and toe tapping musical numbers. Oh! And Dwayne Johnson can LITERALLY do anything.
Coming in at #6 is ‘Passengers’, a new sci-fi film featuring Hollywood superstars Jennifer Lawrence and Chris Pratt. I was initially dismissive of ‘Passengers’. It seemed to me that it was just a cash grab, built to drain every cent from a dumb public. Thankfully, ‘Passengers’ isn’t that. It’s a deftly written sci-fi/adventure/romance that shifts it’s focus and tone constantly as the thrilling plot plays out. Pratt and Lawrence wield every inch of their considerable charisma to make every choice and set piece really COUNT for something.
That’s Number 10 through 6! Next week I’ll come back and give you my top 5! Do you take any issue with these picks? If so, comment below! Until then, I’ll see you next time…
Next Article: Monday the 30th.