Another list! But this list is sharing what I considered to be my favorite movies of the decade. They may not necessarily be “the best” but they are the ones that I still think about years later, or maybe they were “the best” lol. I decided to go by year. I’m not going to go through each movie, but I will choose my favorite from that year (if applicable) and give a quick reason why.
I friggin love this movie. I don’t think it’s the “best” movie of the year but it’s my favorite. The use of music, the comedy, the acting is all so much fun that I watch this movie whenever it came on television. I’ve read the graphic novel series (the film is a great adaptation of that by the way). This movie is a gem. If you’ve never seen it then you should watch it. If I come across it and I don’t have something in mind I’m about to watch, I’ll watch this lol.
Black Swan, Kick Ass, The Social Network, Toy Story 3, How to Train Your Dragon, Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time, The Karate Kid, Easy A
Top Film: We Need to Talk About Kevin
If you haven’t seen this film, just know it’s a very strange film lol. But I remember watching it and being like WTF is this movie and it’s amazingly good. The acting is fantastic, particularly from Ezra Miller as Kevin. Each version of this kid is literally evil lol. I just… it’s dark but it’s so good.
Bridesmaids, Chronicle, Drive, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows part 2, X-men: First Class, We Need to Talk About Kevin, Crazy, Stupid, Love, Captain America: The First Avenger, Rise of the Planet of the Apes, Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol
Top Films: Avengers & Perks of Being a Wallflower
Avengers is such a monumental film for superhero movies in general. It brought together characters we watched come to life and grow in other films and now we have them working together! It was great! It was so much fun, and it was clear that the MCU had a hit on their hands and it made me excited for what they were going to do next.
Perks of Being a Wallflower is a movie I wanted to see when it first came out, I ended up seeing it much later, but I loved it. The book is also phenomenal. It’s a coming of age story, set in the 90s and it’s beautifully acted by Logan Lerman, Emma Watson and Ezra Miller (the movie I fell in love with him). The musical choices were great and to take a book written in letters and create a film that feels so raw and real, was so good. I really do love this movie. It’s emotional and I think anyone can find something in common with one of the main characters.
Beasts of the Southern Wild, ParaNorman, Rise of the Guardians, Django Unchained
Top Film: Fruitvale Station
I saw this movie years after it came out. It had such a heavy topic and I wasn’t sure if I was ready for it and I wasn’t but it’s amazing. It was ignored during Awards season which is ridiculous. Michael B. Jordan was amazing as Oscar Grant, even if the movie takes liberties with the story, the heart of what was happening was there. This young man was taken from his family and this is still relevant to this day. Ryan Coogler created a beautiful film and it also launched the friendship/movie partnership between Coogler and Jordan, which I’m excited to see what else they do.
12 Years a Slave, Frozen, Inside Llewyn Davis, The Croods, Mud, The Spectacular Now, Short Term 12, Dallas Buyers Club, The Wolf of Wall Street
2014 was a great year for movies!
Top Film: Captain America: Winter Soldier
Anyone who knows me knows that I love this movie and it’s my favorite and, in my opinion, the best MCU movie. It feels so different from the films that came before it. It was a spy movie wrapped in a super hero movie. There were major stakes. I always enjoyed Cap from the previous movies, but this movie is when I decided he was my favorite Avenger. His arc over the course of the movies really take a turn here even if his morals were never shaken. The action was amazing. Sebastian Stan as Bucky/Winter Soldier was delightfully tragic (also made me love Bucky to pieces, he’s not a villain and I understand Steve’s reasons in Civil War) I haven’t reviewed this movie but when I do my MCU marathon, I shall.
Birdman, Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, Guardians of the Galaxy, John Wick, Nightcrawler, Whiplash, Selma, How to Train Your Dragon 2, Edge of Tomorrow, Snowpiercer, Kingsman: The Secret Service
Top Film: Creed
This was hard because there wasn’t a lot of movies I loved, or that stuck with me this year. It came down to Room and Creed, but I chose Creed because I remember all the work, I put in just to watch it. I did a Rocky marathon, I managed to get pre-screening tickets to see it, I did some magazine contest or something. Then I saw it in the movies like three more times lol. I love this movie. I love Michael B. Jordan, I still feel like this movie got ignored a lot during awards season. Annoying. But I liked the journey that both Rocky and Donny go on in this film. I root for the relationship blooming with Donny and Bianca. I like the music choices. The fight scenes were both fantastic and I loved that Donny didn’t win at the end. Yes, I know it’s very much like Rocky in that it’s formulaic but when I watch it, I’m not thinking of the similarities, I’m thinking of the possibilities of what they could continue to do.
I believe my favorite film of this year at the time was La La Land and I don’t care, I loved it. But now that it’s been a little while, I recognize that I would much rather watch Zootopia (which was my number two film) and that Moonlight holds so much more weight.
Moonlight is a beautifully subtle film that goes through the life of this one young man. As a child, a teenager and a young man and we see him go through different things that help shape who he might choose to be later. Not to mention, there is a love story that stretches over two parts of his life and that’s handled without feeling to “try hard”. It’s beautiful. My favorite section is the “Chiron” part when he’s a teenager.
Zootopia is one of Disney’s best. It’s a cute animated, mystery adventure but at its center is a lot of reference to social issues. I’ve seen it many times and every time I watch it, I manage to catch something different each time. The voice cast is great, it’s funny, it’s colorful, kids can enjoy it and so can adults.
This was my favorite movie of the year even when I did my Top Movies list. I really loved this movie. I really felt like I was watching someone’s life instead of a movie. As always, Saoirse Ronan was great and her tumultuous relationship with her mother was hilarious and tragic at the same time. For a debut film, Greta Gerwig had a gem.
Call Me by Your Name, Baby Driver, Coco, Get Out, IT, Thor: Ragnarök, Logan, Split, Spider-Man: Homecoming, Wonder Woman, Your Name, John Wick: Chapter 2, Beauty and the Beast, Sleight, Girl’s Trip, My Friend Dahmer
Top Films: Black Panther & Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse
Black Panther- I mean, what can I say? It was amazing. It was my number 2 for 2018 but it’s still a monumental film. I mean, I felt every bit of this movie. The acting is amazing with the standout being Michael B. Jordan’s villainous Killmonger and Dain Gurira’s Okoye. The music, the costumes, the emotional story… this movie is amazing and for the ages!
Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse- This is THE best Spider-Man film. The animation was unique and amazing. The characters were well written, well-acted and the message behind the story can touch anyone. It’s a bit of a coming of age story as well because Miles must really come into his own as a superhero, as someone who can trust himself be confident enough to embrace his new role. Not to mention, little kids can see themselves in Miles but especially little black and brown boys.
A Quiet Place, Avengers: Infinity War, Sorry to Bother You, The Hate U Give, Love Simon, Incredibles 2, Mission Impossible Fallout, Bumblebee,
Top Film: Aladdin
Obviously, this wasn’t my “best of the year” but it’s probably my favorite. I saw it fives time in the theaters, no shame, and I love it. I don’t care about any negative things about. I loved it lol. It’s a remake but I thought it had a lot of heart, the costumes were great, I loved the music, even the changes to some of the classic songs and Jasmine’s new song. I think it’s an easy movie to watch and have a good time.
Knives Out, Booksmart, Aladdin, Queen & Slim, Little Women, Shazam! Spider-Man: Far from Home
So! That’s my movie decade in review! Of course, these are my opinions and I just had to share the movies that made an impression in the last decade.
Please share your favorite movies from the decade in the comments below! I would love to read your choices!
Thanks for reading and thank you to all my followers. I really appreciate you guys and welcome to all the new followers! I hope I can give you a little something to look forward to.
Summary: A chronicle of the childhood, adolescence and burgeoning adulthood of a young black man growing up in a rough neighborhood of Miami.
Cast and Characters. We spend the most time with Chiron but thanks to him meeting others, the viewers get to meet them as well. The characters in this film are acted so well, everything is so understated and subtle. They feel like real people.
Alex R. Hibbert as Little. When we first meet Little, he is running away from bullies. Juan manages to find him, since Little won’t speak, he takes him to his house, feeds him and that sparks a friendship. Alex Hibbert starts off us with this character and he does such a great job setting the tone for this character. He keeps his head down, keeps his lips pursed like he doesn’t like the fact that people keep asking him to speak up. He looks like he has secrets. I thought he did very well.
Ashton Sanders as Chiron. I think he was my favorite out of the three who play the character. Being that he’s a teenager, this is usually a tough time in a person’s life as they are growing out of childhood and on the verge of adulthood. Things change. His mother is deeper into her addiction and he’s being bullied at school. Ashton Sanders is so good! He maintains what Alex started, the awkward walking, keeping his head down, the pursing of the lips like he has something to say but can’t say it. His confusion at his sexuality shows in his face later in this particular section and I think Ashton handles all of that very well.
Trevante Rhodes as Black. First of all, he is fine lol. Now Chiron is an adult, he is a drug dealer in Atlanta. He still says arms length away from others, just does what he has too. He seems have stayed the same into an adult but this time, instead of hating drugs from an arms length away, he hates them up close. He has a conversation with his mother and he ends up reconecting with an old friend. Trevante Rhodes also manages to maintain the same way about him the other two did, the same type of walk, keeping his head down, the quiet way of talking. He doesn’t purse his lips much anymore (I mean how can he with that stupid grill in his mouth) but everything is the same.
Mahershala Ali as Juan. He rightfully won that Oscar. He is drug dealer, who meets Little while he’s running from bullies. He’s kind to him, tries to find where he lives but as Little won’t tell him, he takes him home and cares for him. Even as time goes on, he forms a friendship with him, teaches him to swim and how to make his own path. I really like Mahershala Ali, he knows how to be very subtle and Juan is a man who has to do what he has to do in order to live his life, but when he’s not on the streets, he’s a different person. It’s great the way he takes in Chiron and teaches him many things. His story about living in Cuba and moonlight, I thought came full circle by the end.
Naomie Harris as Paula. Deserved her nomination. I read that she filmed her scenes in three days and it does not show. When we first see her, she doesn’t look like she does drugs but it’s easy to see the downward spiral. Each time we see her, it’s a different point in her life, when Chiron is a child, she seems to be abusive and angry at him, as a teenager, she’s a crack addict and only gives him attention for drug money and as an old woman, well things are different. Naomie Harris is such a great actress, she plays each version of this woman so well, it’s almost scary to see the change. She also made me cry as an adult.
Janelle Monae as Theresa. Definitely a supporting role, but she’s great and contagious. She is Juan’s girlfriend and becomes close with Chiron as she tries to get him to talk comfortably with her, even though he may not do that as a child, he definitely spends a lot more time with her as a teenager. She is what his mother isn’t and it’s clear to see that she loves him and he loves her. Janelle Monae is so likable in this role, the sassiness, her strength creates such a great supporting character.
André Holland as Adult Kevin. He reaches out to Black, he is now a Chef in a dinner in Miami and life hasn’t gone according to plan but he is content for the most part. He and Black have a conversation, they learn more about each other as adults. Kevin does most of the talking and it’s quite interesting to watch their interaction. I felt like Andre Holland was a bit miscast in the role, he seemed to old to play this role, Black couldn’t be more than 25 and Andre seemed much older. Perhaps it was a well thought out choice due to what his life was like. He did a good job though.
Jharrel Jerome as Teen Kevin. He called Chiron “black” and I wouldn’t say they friends like they were when they were kids, but ya know teenage boys. He talks up being a ladies man, though I think he was just doing it on purpose, and later he and Chiron have a nice conversation. However, he us forced to choose a side when Chiron’s bullies want to “haze” him. I liked him, probably in the same way I liked Ashton Sanders. He was charismatic and kind of likable, he played teenage Kevin the way I would think a kid like him would grow into. Seems to be well off, used to getting his way and no one messes with him. Yeah, good job Jharrel (fun fact: he will be in the film adaptation of Walter Dean Myer’s Monster).
Jaden Piner as Child KevinCons. He is Little’s best friend, he’s small like Little but unlike Little, he uses it to his advantage and makes himself seem big. It seems like he comes from a better off family. He teases Little but he also is someone that Little obviously looks up too. Jaden Piner is adorable, he reminds me of Journey Smullet-Bell, like her twin brother (when she was a child). Some child actors can be good and some can be really bad and I think he was in the middle.
Tenderness. I think this film has a lot of tender moments between characters which I thought was beautiful and it isn’t always romantic tenderness. It’s two characters, or even three, who care so much about each other that they created this bond that it’s so easy to feel from the screen. I think it’s great, especially when at times black people can be shown as being sexual beings when it comes to love/romance and this didn’t make a big deal out of it.
Subtle. I liked the fact that a lot of things are shown or discussed in a subtle way. Nothing is made a big deal out of, it feels human.
The Transitions. At first, I was confused because it felt like the chapter for Little just ended, but I noticed that it was a pattern and each pattern was the same but a different color to signify a new time period. I thought it was quite unique.
The ending. I do think it comes full circle, at least in the very last shot we see. We hear Juan talk about it in the beginning and then the way the film ends I was like, wow that’s so awesome.
Questions. I wouldn’t really make this be against the film because it’s probably an art choice, but considering the way the film is edited, we don’t know what happened in between those times when Chiron grows up. It leaves a lot of questions and it’s kind of frustrating, especially when it’s referenced but there isn’t really an explanation. I like the showing and not telling so much but when it’s not there at all, I want to know! Tell me!
Cliche. This isn’t really a terrible thing but I do think that outside of the way the film is told, and the acting, I do think characters like these aren’t necessarily new and fresh. We’ve seen them before.
Overall, I loved this film. It’s amazing. I had minor problems with it and as soon as it was over, I knew and wanted it to win the Oscar for Best Picture. I know a lot of people don’t like it, or refuse to see it due the nature of the film, but I think it’s important that a film like this was made because this does represent people, even men in the Black community. Besides, it may not apply to your life, but it’s a wonderfully made and well acted film.
Rating: 4.9 out of 5 stars.
Have you seen Moonlight? Now that it’s won Best Picture at the Oscars are you more interested or not interested? Let me know in the comments below. Don’t forget to comment, like and follow this blog!
So the 2017 Academy Awards! Just like last year, my friend and I tried to watch as many as we could. A lot of them, I saw before the nominations were announced so there some headway regardless. So this piece, is just for me to recap what happened Sunday night, or at least some of the more memorable things. I will also put the winners here as well.
Also, I tried to get all of my reviews up before the Oscars, but between work, school and me being tired, it didn’t work out the way I wanted it to, so I have some movie reviews coming up in the next few days. Hopefully they will go in this order, but we’ll see. There are also some book reviews in there.
Captain Fantastic, Collateral Beauty, John Wick: Chapter 2, Get Out, Moonlight, and Rock Dog.
Kong: Skull Island should be coming some time this week as well.
Oscars 2017 Winners!
Actor in a Leading Role: Casey Affleck- Manchester by the Sea
Actress in a Leading Role: Emma Stone- La La Land
Actor in a Supporting Role: Mahershala Ali- Moonlight
Actress in a Supporting Role: Viola Davis- Fences
Animated Feature Film:Zootopia
Cinematography:La La Land
Costume Design:Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them
Directing:La La Land
Documentary (Feature):O.J. Made in America
Documentary (Short Subject):The White Helmets
Film Editing:Hacksaw Ridge
Foreign Language Film:The Salesman
Makeup and Hairstyling:Suicide Squad
Music (Original Score):La La Land
Music (Original Song): “City of Stars” from La La Land
Production Design:La La Land
Short Film (Animated):Piper
Short Film (Live Action):Sing
Sound Mixing:Hacksaw Ridge
Visual Effects:The Jungle Book
Writing (Adapted Screenplay):Moonlight
Writing (Original Screenplay):Manchester by the Sea
The Red Carpet is always amazing. It’s so fun to see what people decide to wear. I know people don’t always pay attention to the guys, but there was some dapper men dressed up last night. Some of my favorite looks.
Viola Davis Hailee Steinfeld Brie Larson
Emma Stone Taraji P. Henson Dev Patel
Janelle Monae Kirsten Dunst Octavia Spencer
Mahershala Ali Riz Ahmed John Legend & Chrissy Teigan
I mean, I think there were others I liked, but off the top of my head, these are the ones I remembered. Now here are the ones I was like… meh.
Dakota Johnson Jessica Biel
This next picture… I liked her dress… but the winner of the night was her hair. I think Halle Berry usually looks great on the red carpet. I’m not a fan of her acting most times but she can show up on the carpet. However, I don’t know what happened with her hair here. It looked like it was going to take flight. Twitter was ablaze with comments, it was hilarious.
Jimmy Kimmel. I don’t know. I mean, there were definitely times where I enjoyed him. The Hunger Games like tribute air drop things were cute. There was a joke he made about Moonlight in the beginning “All of the movies are sad this year, a lot of them have no happy endings unless you count the middle of Moonlight” or something like that, that made me cackle. But he was inconsistent, at least in his humor (but humor is subjective ya know).
I didn’t particularly like the Tour Bus thing. I mean, it was cute, I enjoyed how some of the people were reacting, but after a while, it started to be a bit too long. I know I would have been embarrassed after being walking around a movie lot, or being on a tour bus for a while. I mean, I would want to meet people whose work I admire while looking nice.
Lin Manuel Miranda and Auli’i Cravalho perform “How Far I’ll Go” from Moana.
So I loved this performance. It was so great. The video is below for your viewing pleasure. I did want Lin-Manuel Miranda to win and get his EGOT, I love the movie, I love the song. I wish he would have won but at least we got to see this performance because Auli’i Cravalho is a professional and I think she has a bright future ahead of her.
The Best Picture Flub
You can watch the awkwardness below. So, it’s no surprise that I quite enjoyed La La Land. It was my favorite of the year last year, at least I kept going back and forth with that and Zootopia. I even gave it a 5/5 which I still stand by, going over it again, I would recognize a couple more “cons” but I wouldn’t change my score. With that said, I don’t think it’s Best Picture worthy. I wouldn’t have voted for it, especially after I saw Moonlight. So, I was rooting for Moonlight to win most of the awards it was nominated for: Actor in a Supporting Role, Best Directing, Best Adapted Screenplay and Best Picture.
I thought it was strange how Warren Beatty kept pausing and looking around when he was supposed to be calling the winner. Faye Dunaway laughed and was urging him to say the winner. I thought “what is he doing?”, then he showed her the card and she shouted “La La Land!” and I went “NO! BOOO!” and of course Twitter exploded, as did some of my friends on Facebook. Someone immediately said “F*** right off” (that cracked me up). I was already looking for the gif from Get Out where the “maid” said “no, no, no”. I wasn’t listening to the speeches until Jordan Horowitz (Producer from La La Land) interrupted and said it was a mistake. I sat up so quickly “Are they serious?” “What’s going on?” “This isn’t funny.” I watched as Horowitz said it was a mistake, snatched the card away from Warren Beatty (I mean, chill out lol), and showed us the card. It sure enough said Moonlight. I was so shocked that I couldn’t even react the way I wanted to initially. Mr. Beatty explained what happened and I feel bad for him, but I think he also should have said something when he was confused, instead after Faye Dunaway read the card (which she also should have looked more closely), he just let the crew of La La Land come up. It was strange. I do feel bad for everyone involved. That’s harsh but YAY FOR MOONLIGHT! Much more deserving.
My thoughts on Awards Given
I didn’t get the chance to see everything that won but I saw a nice majority and a lot of the awards I agree with.
I do think La La Land was deserving in their Cinematography and Music (Original Score) wins. I don’t think they should have won Best Director or Production Design (I think I missed something but I’m not sure what it is). I’m still salty about that Original Song though.
Moonlight won for Actor in a Supporting Role, Best Picture, Writing (Adapted Screenplay) and it also should have won for Best Directing (I will definitely go into that when I post my review).
Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them rightfully won for Costume Design and should have also won for Production Design. Yay for a Harry Potter film to win an Oscar, it was a long time coming.
Suicide Squad won for Makeup and Hairstyling. I’m legit cackling and rolling my eyes because now that film can call it self an Oscar winner but I mean, one of the things it did right was the look of the characters. So, I guess it can have that.
Zootopia rightfully won for Best Animated Feature Film because it’s amazing. I would have been okay if any of the nominees won because I liked them all, but Zootopia is the better film out of the options (though I think Kubo and the Two Strings was the biggest contender).
I saw someone say on Twitter that Zootopia was the Crash of Animated Films and that actually made me upset. I don’t agree. I saw Crash once, a long time ago and I thought it was preachy and tried to do too much, there was some good stuff in it but it felt forceful (not to mention, no one really wanted it to win). However, Zootopia was very clever in how they handled the topics presented, it’s a very two tones film, very layered. It can be watched as a kid’s movie, no worries in the world, it’s cute, it’s colorful, fun and the characters are all likable. Crash was not like that. On the other hand, it also had a lot of deep undertones, talking about racial and gender equality among other things. I remember seeing it for the first time and going “okay cute movie” then it turned into “wow… Disney, that’s deep.” So I disagree with that statement so much.
Casey Affleck vs Denzel Washington for Actor in a Leading Role.
So I saw both films, I think Manchester by the Sea was a great movie as was Fences. I thought both actors did great jobs in their roles, and I think it’s easy to see why Denzel wanted that award so much, August Wilson is important to him, that play is important to him and I personally think he should have won. It seemed to me that Casey Affleck thought the same thing due to his reaction to winning. I’m sure he was grateful for the win, but he seemed so flustered that his head was down almost the entire time. Both films are a lot to take in and both performances were nuanced in their own way but I thought Denzel Washington was stronger. I knew it was going to be between the two of them but it was interesting to see what happened.
Emma Stone for Actress in a Leading Role.
I don’t really have a problem with this only because La La Land was the only film I saw in the Actress in a Leading Role category. I wanted to see the others, but I didn’t get the chance unfortunately. I thought Ruth Negga had a chance from what I heard of her performance (plus, it would have been nice to see all Actor awards held by black people but ya know), but I wasn’t upset by this because of that fact. I may feel differently once I see the other films (like how I was upset at Jennifer Lawrence beating out Quvenzhané Wallis that one year) but can’t say about it for now. Besides, I thought Emma Stone did very well in La La Land, she was the star of that film. Just make smart after Oscar choices Emma. I’ll still like you though regardless.
Actor and Actress in Supporting Roles.
Viola Davis in Fences
Oh my goodness, so deserving. I still feel like she should have been nominated for Actress in a Leading Role and I think she should win for that but who knows if they would have picked her over Emma Stone in that category. Her speech was amazing. She is amazing. That dress was amazing. VIOLA!!! She is the only black woman to have an Emmy, Oscar and Tony all for acting. A coworker said that now Beyonce just needs to sample Viola’s speech in a song so Viola can get her Grammy and have her EGOT lol. I agree! She can do no wrong to me, she is amazing. I also know she had me all the way stressed out on that “How To Get Away with Murder” finale though. I need answers Viola.
Mahershala Ali in Moonlight.
I don’t want to talk about this much here as I’m going to do a review for the film, but this dude is amazing. First thing I saw him in was The Hunger Games: Mockingjay 1 and 2 (unfortunately) which I didn’t realize he was in those. He was a standout in Free State of Jones and then of course “Luke Cage” where he was also a standout (scary dude), he was in Kicks (which was one of my favorite movies last year) and then this film. He deserves all the awards. His speech was also very well done. He seems so likable, and he is fine. I can’t wait to see what else he’s going to do.
So that’s my Oscars 2017 Recap. Stay tuned for my Captain Fantastic movie review!
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