Disclaimer: There are a lot of movies I missed in 2016. But that won’t stop me from pretending my opinions are still important! So, take a look at some of my favorites from last year and ignore my lack of qualifications, because Ron’s making me write this.
Green Room – This movie was a journey. Maybe not the most re-watchable film, but the first viewing is nothing short of gripping. It’s one of those “bad situation gets worse” thrillers, taking a simple plot and mining it for every bit of excitement you could ask for. Plus plenty you didn’t ask for — it’s not for the faint of heart! Green Room delivers on a terrific movie-watching experience and a great role for Imogen Poots, an actress I like a lot mostly because of her name.
Sausage Party – I give a movie a ton of credit if it can surprise me. Not only did Sausage Party throw me an amazing surprise birthday party, it upended my expectations. It gets weird in its 89 minute runtime (weirder than my surprise party joke). But good weird. It’s going to be a while before we see something like it again. Bizarre, unpredictable and deep. That’s right, an R-rated cartoon starring a hot dog voiced by Seth Rogen is deep.
Deadpool – Easily the funniest superhero movie since Mystery Men and maybe even Batman (1966). If you, like me, are bored by the Robert Downey Jr. cinematic universe and its paint-by-number approach, then this move is for you. It’s not dark and brooding either, like the DC stuff. I’d bet no superhero movie does more in the departments of: raunch, fourth-wall breaks, or ugly faces under the mask. Except maybe Darkman for that last one.
Aaah!!! (Real Monsters)
Anyway, Ryan Reynolds lobbied tirelessly to get Deadpool made. It may not stick the landing, but I give him props for spicing up a genre that was getting awfully stale.
La La Land – Confession: I didn’t buy the soundtrack immediately after walking out of the theater. I wasn’t floored by the dancing Ryan and Emma worked to perfect, either. The abundant charisma of the two leads only carried the film so far, but there were moments. All a movie needs is a moment — a moment where that analytical voice in your head disappears and you’re just left watching… La La Land has at least one.
Unnecessary bunny pictures (to compete with Ron’s post) –
Oh god! I went past page 2! Oh no… Why?!
The Nice Guys – This film never got talked about much and I’m not sure why. It’s not Shane Black’s best work *cough* Last Action Hero *cough* but Crowe and Reynolds have a great rapport as P.I. partners who reluctantly team together. What it really has going for it is a sharp sense of humor playing on genre tropes non-stop. You probably knew that already since it’s a Shane Black film. Not without its faults, I still think it’s a very solid under-the-radar offering from 2016.
Your Name – I LOVE this movie. Technically, it was only released here in the U.S. in 2017, but I don’t care! No one’s reading this blog post anyway. Besides Ron… And maybe Ethan. Hi, Ethan! Go see Your Name, Ethan.