If my counting is correct, I saw 49 films (not including repeat viewings or events) at the cinema during 2017, getting good use out of that monthly pass! I’m usually generous with my ratings, but the average mark out of ten was only 6.5, dipping as low as 3 and never higher than 9. All in all, I’d have to suggest that this was not a classic year for cinema, with more that disappointed than wowed me. There were a few, though, so keep reading!
I’m going to start with the worst of the year and get it over with:
- Geostorm: big, loud and very daft, definitely not a good movie!
- Baywatch: not quite as big, but way more daft and borderline on being a bad movie!
- Alien: Covenant: just when you thought things couldn’t get any worse than Prometheus, they managed it. Seriously, with everything it had going for it, how do you mess up this much?!
- The Mummy: so much bad and so surprising given the presence of Tom Cruise and a huge budget. That Dark Universe series dies before it starts, alas!
- 2017’s top turkey – Snatched: oh, how I hated this movie. Slivers of mildly amusing amid so, so much cringe-worthy awfulness!
Bonus ‘meh’ awards to the likes of Unlocked (seriously, can’t even remember what this was about o_O), American Assassin (not awful, but…), and Pirates of the Caribbean whatever-number-we’re-up-to!
The Sea of Disappointment
I think my overarching feel about the year is one of disappointment: so many things that just weren’t as good as I’d hoped.
- La La Land: yes it was good, but absolutely not the heart-warming musical I was expecting. Was more surprised by the turn in tone than everyone was by the Oscar mix-up, tbh!
- The Dark Tower: I actually enjoyed this more than most, but given the richness of the beloved source material, it was a rather sorry attempt at a big screen adaptation. Still, it had Idris Elba, and Matthew Mahogany being deliciously evil.
- Colossal: I suspect this was a marketing fail rather than the movie itself, but I’d been expecting fun and got something much darker.
- Murder on the Orient Express: looked lovely, but somehow messed up the mystery’s tension levels.
- Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets: well it looked *amazing* but sadly just about everything else was wrong with it. File next to Jupiter Ascending and John Carter, methinks!
Is it just me, or does it finally feel like the comic book world-takeover is finally slowing down? I won’t say ‘to a halt’, not by any means, but somehow the year doesn’t seem to have been totally taken over. Mind, we still had Guardians of the Galaxy 2, Wonder Woman, Thor Ragnarok, Justice League, and Spider-Man Homecoming. Okay, what was my point again? The real surprise was DC managing to make one that was pretty darn good…!
Actually, I’d have to suggest that this might be the year where the studios perhaps – hopefully! – realised that they had to shake things up. Wonder Woman gave us a female lead for a change; Ragnarok threw out any attempt to follow its two predecessors and was the funniest superhero movie since Deadpool! Notice how successful these were, compared to the dull and predictable JL.
And the award goes to…
Now, usually I can’t pick a favourite movie of the year, but this year I might just have a clear winner! Honourable mentions to Guardians 2 (I just couldn’t have an entire superhero list!) and baby Groot, Blade Runner 2049 for not ruining the franchise, and Logan for absolutely tearing up the franchise and being possibly the best superhero movie ever – but, a bit on the dark side. So, I’m going to go with:
- Wonder Woman: it’s getting more praise than it really deserves for a rather ordinary superhero plot, but by jove those Amazons were amazing! 🙂 The omg-why-did-it-take-this-long cultural impact of this movie really does make it more important than it should be, but hey: I’m all for inspiring some real-life wonder women!
- T2: Trainspotting was one of the films of my youth, becoming part of Scotland’s culture, and I was not expecting the sequel to be so… this. Poignant? Entertaining? They messed up Edinburgh’s geography, but got the rest of it pretty much spot on.
- Hidden Figures: it’s not perfect in terms of the politics, but it was really really good and despite knowing how all the space race stuff worked out I was still gripping my seat!
- Star Wars: The Last Jedi: I like Star Wars, but I’ve never been a super-fan. This installment, though, finally made me go ‘Oh!’ and perhaps just realise what everyone’s been so nutty about for all this time – which was ironic given the super-fans largely hated it But hey: adora-porgs 🙂
- Thor Ragnarok: look, it’s not the greatest movie ever made by a long shot, maybe not even the best of 2017, but the sheer joy of laughing my head off so unexpectedly makes this my favourite of the year!
I’m already working on the list of things to see in 2018, so here’s to an even better year of movie entertainment! What are you excited to see?