2017

The Year in Review: Top 10 Movies of 2017

2017 brought the world an amazing number of movies ranging from big-budget blockbusters to small time indie films. Each month brought a major hit. While there were some disappointments like: Transformers: The Last Knight, Justice League, and King Arthur: Legend of the Sword, there were definitely more smash hits than disasters.

This year Hollywood gave us a variety of films including crowd-pleasing blockbusters, dramas, genre-bending movies that combined strong storytelling with high-action thrills. These are the 10 films I thought were the best from this year.  I decided to award honorable mentions to the films Blade Runner 2049, American Made, Guardians of the Galaxy: Vol 2 and Shape of Water.

1. All the Money In the World

In “All the Money in the World,” oil magnate and billionaire J. Paul Getty strongly refuses to pay a $17 million ransom to rescue his kidnapped grandson from Italian thugs. The film makes you ask yourself, what is a human life worth, especially if it’s your own flesh and blood.  Among the stars in the film including Mark Wahlberg, Christopher Plummer and Michelle Williams. Christopher Plummer replaced Kevin Spacey as Getty in the 11th hour as news broke of sexual harassment allegations against Spacey.  Despite being a last-minute replacement, Christopher Plummer delivered a strong performance as Getty, possibly making him a Oscar contender.

2. Get Out

There are very few films that come out of nowhere and dominate the national conversation of heated topics. In 2017, that movie was Get Out. Jordan Peele, best known for being one-half of the comedy duo, Key & Peele, made his directorial debut with this film, so it surprised many when he was making his directorial debut with a racially charged horror film.

The film’s trailer made it appear to be a parody and possible disaster. However, when it hit theater, it became an overnight sensation, grossing more than $254 million world wide. The film stars Daniel Kaluuya, who plays young man in an interracial relationship with a young woman, played by Allison Williams. They take a trip to visit her parents and end up seeing some crazy things.

3.  Dunkirk

The event that took place at Dunkirk, was a major turning point in World War II. The battle was lost and the Nazis were close to complete global domination, but the bravery and loyalty of the British and French forces turned their darkest hour into a massive morale booster for the Allies. The film is directed by Christopher Nolan features an all-star cast including Harry Styles, Tom Hardy and Kenneth Branagh.  Dunkirk is a non-stop barrage of tension, dread and glimmers of hope.

4.  Thor: Ragnarok

Marvel Studios, once again dominate the box office with their latest superhero film ‘Thor: Ragnarok. This go around the studio decided to combine Thor’s Asgardian antics and mixed them with Guardians of the Galaxy’s comedic tone and the Hulk, along with a stellar villain in the form of Hela, played by Cate Blanchett. Thor’s third film was directed by Taika Waititi and managed to balance the film with epic storyline and some comic relief. The film delivers strong battle scenes, revealing character moments and small silly moments.

5. The Post

Hollywood puts the Washington Post back on the big screen. However, this time Meryl Streep plays Washington Post publisher  Katharine Graham, who is fighting for the 1971 publishing of the Pentagon Papers. The film is expertly directed by Steven Spielberg and is enriched with a stellar cast that includes Tom Hanks as Ben Bradlee. The film is about press freedom and accountability, which it homes in the age of Wikileaks and questionable actions by the government.

6.  Wonder Woman

Gal Gadot is back as Wonder Woman in her stand-alone film Wonder Woman. The film was seen as an attempt by Warner Bros. to revive the DC Extended Universe after failing to get much praise with their recent films including  Batman v Superman and Suicide Squad.  Gal Gadot charmed audiences with her performance as Diana, legendary warrior of Themyscira.  The film was directed by Patty Jenkins and earned plenty of praise from viewers and the media.

7. Logan

2017 marked the end of Hugh Jackman’s Wolverine. Hugh Jackman and Director James Mangold turned Wolverine’s story into a bloodied western, featuring a retired killer who is forced to have one last fight. This is not the family-friendly superhero movie, as Logan managed to earn a “R” rating. Mangold manages to turn up the intensity when it comes to Logan’s bloody and brutal fights. Jackman has been the face of the Wolverine for nine films over 17 years.

8.  Logan Lucky

Imagine “Ocean’s 11” in the south, and that is Logan Lucky.  Logan Lucky is directed by Steven Soderbergh, the man responsible for the Ocean films. He has managed to turn the Ocean’s 11 inspired heist film inside out. Soderbergh turns what should be a cool and professional crew into a trio of redneck criminals with a dimwitted  robbery of a NASCAR event. The film stars an impressive cast that includes:  Channing Tatum, Daniel Craig, Adam Driver, Katie Homes, Sebastian Stan, and Seth MacFarlane.  Logan Lucky is a hilarious heist film, not to be missed.

9. War for the Planet of the Apes

2017 marked the end of the modern apes trilogy. While it did not reach the heights of success that the other two did, it’s still a great film. Many believe it is the best film of the series, since the original in 1968. The film is a massive blockbuster action film, giving us massive battles, where everyone dies and nobody comes out a winner. The film stars Woody Harrelson as the human’s military leader and Andy Serkis as Caesar.

10. Coco

Lately, Pixar has been struggling to deliver classic films. Inside Out was a massive hit but The Good Dinosaur flopped at the box office.  Despite all of that, Pixar delivered a major hit with Coco. The film was directed Lee Unkrich who also directed Toy Story 3. The film set in a world inspired by Mexico’s Day of the Dead. Coco boasts an entirely Latino cast that includes Benjamin Bratt, and Gael García Bernal. This is definitely one of their best films to date and worth watching again and again.

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