Sunday, 31 December 2017

Top Ten Films 2017

It's been a great year for cinema, so many good films. It was difficult to pick just ten to feature on this blog (you can check out my whole ranking of the year here...). Here we are though, my top ten films of 2017. Read on and enjoy.

10. The Big Sick

Finally a comedy worth paying for and a breath of fresh air in the Rom-Com genre. It's hilariously funny and beautifully sad, all at the same time. It's a beautiful film, based on the real life story of Kumail Nanjiani and his wife Emily V Gordon; both proving themselves as great screenwriters and I hope they create more art together soon! Read my full review here.

9. The Killing of a Sacred Deer

It's not even the weirdest film on this list and that's saying something from a new Yorgos Lanthimos film. It's a bit of a thriller; keeping you on edge throughout the whole film, constantly second guessing every facial expression of every character. If Barry Keoghan doesn't get a supporting actor nomination this year I'd be shocked. Read my full review here.

8. War of the Planet of the Apes

This franchise gets overlooked by most but it really does seem to be doing something different in every aspect of blockbuster filmmaking; this third installment in the prequel/reboot trilogy was no different. It fully rounded off the story in a satisfying way, whilst giving us some of the most emotional moments in cinema this year... and it was about talking apes. Read my full review here.

7. Star Wars: The Last Jedi

It tried to do something new with the franchise and in my eyes it succeeded. The film truly passed the torch tp the new characters whilst also delivering some of the saga's greatest moments yet. The performances are the best they've been and the stakes have never been higher. I can't wait to see where they take Star Wars next. Read my full review here.

6. The Florida Project

Caught this one late but it definitely left an impression on me and I haven't been able to shake it from my mind for the last month. It's probably one of the most beautiful looking films of the year, about one of the ugliest topics. It's got some amazing performances and will no doubt win big at this year's academy awards. I didn't write a full review but you can check out more of my thoughts on The Florida Project here.

5. Mudbound

Mudbound was the surprise of the year for me. It dropped on Netflix and was easily their best original film. I'm still trying to see it on the big screen (no luck in the UK...). It's a beautiful epic tale of war, racism and family; it has some of the most moving relationships depicted this year. Most people have Netflix now - so come on, see this one ASAP! Read my full review here.

4. Super Dark Times

I saw this one at a horror film festival in Lisbon and although from the trailer I knew I was probably going to like it, I didn't realise that it was a masterpiece in horror filmmaking. It looks like it could just be a feature version of Stranger Things; but it's not. It's more grounded and emotionally resonant with some of the most shocking turns in a film this year. Read my full review here.

3. Blade Runner 2049

I'm not a huge fan of the original Blade Runner but after learning the director behind 2049 was Denis Villeneuve I knew I had to watch this one in the cinema. I'm so happy I did because this film was a masterpiece in the Sci-Fi genre; it's deep philosophical musings against the backdrop of some of the most beautiful landscapes brought on screen ever - it just blew me away. It's long but it's worth it, this film was easily the best Sci-Fi film of the year. Read my full review here.

2. Raw

Definitely the weirdest film I've seen this year but it totally works. This French/Belgian horror/thriller film kept me gripped throughout and I didn't avert my eyes once - no matter how gruesome it got. I was just in awe at the sheer visuals and score going on. I can't praise this film highly enough, you've really got to see it for yourself, it was very close to being my number one film of the year. Check out my full review here.

1. Get Out

Jordan Peele's directorial debut is the film that sums up 2017 and it's awesome. It's a horror/thriller/comedy which acts as an extremely relevant social commentary. At one moment it scares you, at the next it has you in fits of laughter. It's probably the easiest film to show other people; I haven't met one person who hasn't enjoyed it. It's such a great watch - my number one film of the year, check out my full review here.

There you go guys, my favourite films of the year. Let me know yours in the comments below.

Thanks for reading!

Wednesday, 27 December 2017

Top Ten TV Shows 2017

It's that time of year again. Not going to lie, I haven't seen as much TV this year as I would have liked to and some shows that had the potential to be on this list haven't all been caught up with yet. So here are the top ten shows I've had time to watch this year. Read on and enjoy.

10. Silicon Valley (Season 4)

Silicon Valley goes from strength to strength each season, the comedy is unlike anything else on TV at the moment. It has some brilliant people involved and I love how the storyline and characters evolve each season with new and hilarious scenarios. 

9. Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. (Season 4)

After Iron Fist, The Defenders and Inhumans it might have seemed like Marvel had a bad year with TV but their original series Agent of S.H.I.E.L.D. has been the gift that keeps on giving. Each third of the season had it's own great storyline, each better than the last, creating some very powerful moments for the team that loyal viewers have grown to love. I haven't caught up with the latest episodes yet but I am very much looking forward to!

8. Girls (Season 6)

In it's final season, Girls, subverted expectations like it always has. The characters are (slowly) starting to grow up and were all given a great send off, even if some of them were less showy than expected. I have loved this show from the beginning and although it's had its ups and downs, I am sad to see it go. 

7. Jane the Virgin (Season 3 & 4)

This result may have some recency biased as I have only just binge watched the two and bit seasons of this show. My girlfriend introduced me to it and I was unsure as to whether I would enjoy it or not but to be honest, I absolutely love it! I've never seen a show more comfortable with what it is and it is a joy to watch. 

6. Game of Thrones (Season 7)

The end is near for Game of Thrones and you can definitely feel the show speeding towards closure in the penultimate season. There was a lot of great stuff going on this season even if some elements did feel rushed. It's still unclear as to whether we'll see the end in 2018 or 2019 but either way, I'm excited to see how this epic closes. 

5. The Expanse (Season 2)

After a slow start with season one, The Expanse started to find its stride in season two. The characters feel like family now, the stakes are starting to stack up and the story has kicked into gear. It's great to see how faithful the show still is to the source material and if they continue doing so we'll be in for one hell of a season three.

4. Stranger Things (Season 2)

After a near perfect first season, I was a little worried that Stranger Things 2 might not have been able to recreate the magic. Thankfully I was wrong and this season brought back our favourite characters, developing them further and even bringing about new and hilarious duos. I love these characters and I can't wait to see what they get them to do next.

3. Halt and Catch Fire (Season 4)

2017 also saw us say goodbye to what I consider one of the best TV shows this decade, Halt and Catch Fire. Not a lot of people caught this one and once again I urge everyone to seek it out, it has some of the best characters created for television and each one of them was given closure in powerful and emotion ways. You really should have been watching this one.

2. The Handmaid's Tale (Season 1)

As the year got very political, so did the media content that was produced. It's probably just a coincidence that The Handmaid's Tale seemed to represent the Trump future we're all worried about, especially since it's based off of a book written in the 80's. This show was not just a brilliant and gripping story but it was also a great jumping point to kick off discussion about society in the present. And Elisabeth Moss is awesome.

1. American Gods (Season 1)

I was worried when I heard that American Gods was going to be adapted into a TV show, the book is crazy and I was unclear how it would translate to the medium. Well, it translates very well indeed with the series staying very faithful to the book as well as expanding upon even more ideas, giving fans of the book and newcomers both a sense of originality. It's unlike anything I've ever seen on TV before and it takes some very crazy and incredible turns as well as being a visual delight. I'm interested to see whether it can carry on the ultra high quality storytelling in the second season because it has unfortunately lost its show runners, hopefully it will top my list next year as well.

That's all for TV shows this year, be sure to check back soon for my top ten list of films. 

Thanks for reading!