Wilkins ranks 10 best movies of 2018


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A lot of terrible movies came out this past year. However, 2018 brought several incredible entries to the big screen. Even though people will not agree with these picks, these 10 films struck me as standouts in a pretty great year for moviegoing.

10. “Bandersnatch”

“Black Mirror Bandersnatch” is an interactive thriller movie in the anthology series “Black Mirror.” The movie conveys the message that we don’t really have a choice in life sometimes, and things are destined to happen no matter what you do. This movie explores that theme very well while also serving as a fun “Choose Your Own Adventure” film. Fionn Whitehead does an incredible job in the lead role along with supporting actor Will Poulter. The amount of work that was put in to make this has to be appreciated, and it is a truly interesting movie.

9. “Isle of Dogs”

Wes Anderson has created a truly delightful movie with “Isle of Dogs.” Every frame of this stop motion story is crafted with extreme detail and beauty. The film consists of everything great about Wes Anderson and his style and tells a fun story involving dogs, Japan, childhood, and friendship.

8. “You Were Never Really Here”

Joaquin Phoenix plays a psychopathic war veteran in what is being called the “21st Century ‘Taxi Driver’.” This film tells a gripping tale of revenge and tackles issues such as dealing with loss and child slavery. The movie has a gritty tone that makes the audience feel uneasy and tense throughout the film. It also has an amazing score that captures the setting perfectly.

7. “The Sisters Brothers”

Every actor in this movie gives an incredible performance, and that’s what makes it such an enjoyable experience. The characters are well written, the action sequences are entertaining, and the atmosphere of the west is captured beautifully. It’s an overall well-made, dark western.

6. “Roma”

“Roma” is a fantastic drama film from award-winning director Alfonso Cuaron. This movie is not only gorgeous, but it also consists of so many incredible shots including long takes with tons of extras and detail. Cuaron takes a page out of his previous movie “Children of Men” by telling the story through the environment in which the characters are inhabiting and it is very effective. With this director and a cast that delivers excellent performances, “Roma” will definitely appear several times at the Academy Awards.

5. “Ballad of Buster Scruggs”

This film explores the concepts of death, violence, and brutality in the Western United States in the 19th century. While tackling these themes, it also serves as a genuinely funny and well-acted western. It imitates the style of classic Hollywood films and makes for a truly cleverly comedic experience. Although some of the skits are weaker than others, this is a must-see for Netflix users.

4. “Hereditary”

Horror has made a comeback recently, and “Hereditary” is one of the best horror movies released in the past decade. It didn’t rely on cheap jumpscares to get a reaction from the audience, it was truly terrifying and disturbing. It wasn’t afraid to depict things that are horrible to think about or see on screen. The performances in this movie are on point, and there is a lot to get out of this film. Overall just an amazing horror movie.

3. “Paddington 2”

“Paddington 2” was simply enchanting. No matter what age you are, there is something for everyone to enjoy in this movie. This movie will make you laugh, cry, or grow your heart two sizes. The misadventures of everyone’s favorite marmalade-loving bear in this film are a testament to the enduring power of kindness and proves excellent comedy exists outside of the R-rating.

2. “Spider-Man Into the Spider-Verse”

“Spider-Man Into the Spider-Verse” may be the best piece of media Spider-Man has ever been associated with. Along with being funny, creative, and visually stunning, this film really understood the character of Spider-Man and why people connect with him so much. This movie is unique, engaging, upbeat, smart, and a must-see of 2018.

Honorable Mentions (Ranked): “First Reformed,” “The Favourite,” “Upgrade,” “Game Night,” “Suspiria,” “Mandy,” “Eighth Grade,” “Sorry to Bother You,” “Annihilation,” “Deadpool 2” and “Mission Impossible: Fallout.”

1. “If Beale Street Could Talk”

“If Beale Street Could Talk” fundamentally captures the human experience and emotional complexity. It starts as a naive and sweet love story and develops into a masterpiece of true love. This movie becomes a relevant addition to the political conversation without taking a political stand. It perfectly portrays the optimism of love and fleshes out its characters with astonishing depth. Barry Jenkins is truly a master at creating incredible emotional journeys.

By Riley Wilkins

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