Alyx’s Best Movies of 2019

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Of course, everyone usually puts these kinds of lists out before the year is out BUT I wanted to give myself a chance to watch a few more movies I had in my queue, but I probably won’t be able to watch them and get this list out before its been too long. So, without further ado…
In my opinion these are “Alyx’s Best” or better yet “My favorite” Films of 2019. I saw a lot of movies, some I never managed to get to, but I saw most of the ones I was looking forward to.
Honorable Mentions: Frozen II, Abominable, John Wick Chapter 3: Parabellum, Good Boys, Captain Marvel, It Chapter Two, Avengers: Endgame, Lego Movie 2: The Second PartJoker, Fighting with My Family, Toy Story 4, The Kid Who Would Be King, Us
Alyx’s Top Movies of 2019
12. Spider-Man: Far from Home
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I loved this movie. As I said in my review, it’s probably now my favorite live action Spider-Man film. It’s my opinion of course and that could change when I finally do my “Spider-Man” marathon but I loved what it did. It connected to the previous stories in the MCU, but I liked what they did on their own. Tom Holland as Peter Parker/Spider-Man is so relatable. Zendaya’s MJ was given more life and we got to know and like her more. Jake Gyllenhaal’s Mysterio was a great villain and the story is emotional but contained. I really loved it.
11. Aladdin
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This movie is here because I loved it. It’s also second to last because I don’t think it’s the best movie out of my choices, but I loved it so much. So much. The music was great, the costumes were amazing. I loved the chemistry between Mena Massoud and Naomi Scott, plus the friendship between Aladdin and Genie (Will Smith) was fantastic. I loved the new life they breathed into the story. It didn’t replace the animated classic, but it just added to my love for Aladdin in general.
10. How to Train Your Dragon: Hidden World
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I went over the animated films I’d seen this year and I think this is the best one. I’m sure it will once again not get the Oscar is deserves, but this is a great finale to an equally great trilogy. The animation is amazing and clearly has gotten better since the first film. The emotional weight in this story between Hiccup and Toothless is handled well. I’m pretty sure I cried. If you want a wonderfully animated and written story, this trilogy is where to go, and this final film wraps it up beautifully.
9. Booksmart
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My friend and I saw this movie and we had a great time. The friendship between the two leads worked well, their chemistry was amazing. It’s a funny adventure of two high school graduates trying to rectify their high school career of not having fun. They want all the fun now and it leads to a ton of shenanigans. For Olivia Wilde’s directorial debut, it was a great and hilarious film!
8. Fast Color
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I was going to put this in my honorable mentions but considering how different and fresh this film felt, I had to put it here. I spent most of this movie in awe because of how beautiful it is. There is a sadness to it because of the estranged relationship between mother and daughter on both ends. But a movie about generations of black women having powers? Not to mention, how the film portrays those powers using color, this film is so beautiful and subtle that I really want a sequel.
7. Shazam!
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This is the only DCEU film so far, that I really liked all the way through. It’s funny! It’s fun and I loved the chemistry between Billy (both versions) and Freddy. The superhero stuff is great too. While the villain was one dimensional, I liked Mark Strong in the role. I also liked the mythology behind the shazam powers. I like the idea of them being passed on to others who are worthy and that they look for kids because there is a chance they haven’t been “corrupted” by the world yet. That’s a very nice idea. This is a movie I would come back to often.
6. Ready or Not
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A movie I watched recently, I had no idea what I would expect but I really liked it! The characters are fun, and the actors clearly had a great time in the film. The story is unique in that the characters aren’t quite into doing what they’re doing but they do it because of… weird reasons lol. It gives a new meaning to the phrase “final girl” lol.
5. Rocketman
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I LOVED this movie. I mean I really did. I was surprised at how much I loved it. I am by no means an “Elton John fan” pass me knowing some of his music and I like it. The music is amazing, and Taron Egerton was so good as Elton! It’s emotional and being based on a true story, I like how they incorporated reality with music to allow us to understand the times in Elton’s life. I love musicals and this is very much one, but the music helps tell the story instead of just happening.
4.Luce
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I recently watched this movie and it’s amazing. The story leaves a lot of room for viewers to interpret differently. I think that’s important for a film like this. The acting is fantastic, led by Kelvin Harrison Jr. as Luce. His character is enigmatic and you’re probably going to go back and forth between what you believe in this. It’s a quiet film in a lot of ways and worth watching for different understandings each time you watch.
3. Knives Out
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I really liked this! The cast in this movie is AMAZING. Everyone really does a great job. The mystery is intriguing and mysterious and very well written. Plus, the cinematography and costuming give it this old-fashioned look and feel which works for the world these people are living in. I find that mysteries like this aren’t always handled well when it comes to films, they try too hard to make it “mysterious” or they don’t allow the audience to figure it out as well but this film doesn’t try too hard but allows the story to unfold and allows the audience to figure it out as well.
2. Queen & Slim
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It took me a moment to decide where this movie would fall in my lineup. I was a little unsure of how I feel about it when I finally saw it but the black romance that develops in this film is written really well. I found the two main characters well written and well acted, particularly Daniel Kaluuya who I love. The story is important, relevant and emotional. It think everyone will get a little something different out of it and perhaps discover something new each time they watch it. I hope for more well written black stories in the future.
 1. Little Women
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I LOVED THIS MOVIE. I’ve always loved Little Women and it truly is a timeless story because watching it in a different storyteller’s hands as an adult, gives me the chance to completely connect way more than I ever did. It feels new. The acting is amazing, especially Florence Pugh, who plays a character I never quite liked, but she made me like her. She made me be okay with the romantic choices that I was never okay with. Saoirse Ronan was also amazing as Jo March and I connected so much with her. It’s an emotional story that I loved and I will watch again and again.
That’s it! That’s my list! I hope you all have enjoyed spending the movies of 2019 with me! Please in the comments share your favorite movies of 2019. 
Happy New Year!

Movie Review: Ready or Not (2019)

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Summary: A bride’s wedding night takes a sinister turn when her eccentric new in-laws force her to take part in a terrifying game.

Pros:

Cast and Characters. 

  • Samara Weaving as Grace Le Domas. She is an orphan and yearns for a family so she’s eager to please Alex’s family and to become a part. When she finds out that this “game night” is a serious affair, she begins to quickly adapt to what she needs to do in order to survive. She’s not like super competent at everything because she gets hurt, she falls (not while running), she scrambles to live and you really root for her to win. I don’t believe I’ve seen this actress in anything, I actually thought she was someone else, but she’s really likable and a trooper. I think she probably did a lot while filming this and it really comes through on the screen. She’s having fun but she’s completely badass.
  • Adam Brody as Daniel Le Domas. I think he’s the oldest son but he’s an alcoholic and probably the one in the family I found the most interesting and layered, followed by Becky. He might come off at the beginning as being just sleazy but that’s just the alcohol talking lol. Throughout the film, we see him go through things that will keep the audience guessing what he’ll do by the end. I like Adam Brody. I’m not super familiar with everything he does but everything I’ve seen him in, I’ve liked him. I think he’s charming and really likable and I’m not sure if his character was meant to come off that way but he does and I really wish that Grace met him first lol, they had really good chemistry lol.
  • Mark O’Brien as Alex Le Domas. He is Grace’s husband and completely against the games his family plays. He spends a lot of the movie trying to help Grace, to save her and as it goes on, you learn about his relationship to his other family members. He’s close with his mom and his brother so he goes through a lot of struggle. I find him interesting. The actor does a great job in handling Alex’s trepidation of their tradition while also handling any emotional shifts we see as the film goes on.

The Rest of the Family. 

  • Henry Czerny as Tony Le Domas. He really steals a lot of his scenes; his delivery is very much “petulant child” and it works for his character! He’s so deep in this family history that if things aren’t going according to plan, he freaks out. He’s hilarious and also really likable.
  • Andie MacDowell as Becky Le Domas. She is Daniel, Emilie and Alex’s mother. She  and Grace connect early on and she talks a lot about not having Alex around anymore and it clearly affects her. But she’s so… nice that’s it’s very weird lol.
  • Nicky Guadagni as Helene Le Domas. She is Tony’s sister and she is a trip. In the beginning, we get to see her going through this but it’s interesting to see what she ended up as. She is crazy and I thoroughly loved her. Even her hair was crazy. The actress clearly had fun.
  • Melanie Scrofano as Emilie Le Domas-Bradley.  She was hilarious! I think she’s the youngest of the siblings and she’s on drugs lol and the actress CLEARLY is having fun playing the part. She is responsible for some crazy stuff the that happens because she’s just too all over the place. I’ve never seen this actress in anything, but she’s very likable and I really enjoyed her energy.
  • Kristian Bruun as Fitch Bradley. He is Emilie’s husband and his game was “Old Maid” and he has a lot of funny bits. Also, quite likable. But he’s really there to not believe in the whole background side of what they’re doing. He’s the naysayer.
  • Elyse Levesque as Charity Le Domas. She is Daniel’s wife and the “ice queen”. She has some interesting things that are brought about her background and of course the movie doesn’t go into detail about this because it’s not about her but I found it very interesting that she married into this family and had to play “Chess” but she’s really into this game. She wants to be part of this family more than anything. That’s clear. I’ve seen Elyse in televisions and I’ve never liked any of her characters but I quite enjoyed her here. I think between good character writing and her playing an interesting character, that works in her favor.

Black Comedy/Quite Hilarious. This movie is actually pretty funny but it’s very much a black comedy. People are trying to kill this girl; there’s blood and other people die and it’s not like super gratuitous but you still see stuff. The dialogue is really funny and I think the actors really did well in elevating the script because while the dialogue is funny, their delivery of those moments always helps. Emilie was hilarious because she is the cause for some stuff that happens and it’s so shocking and hilarious. It happens like twice. I cackled. Then the ending was also pretty hilarious.

Refreshing Premise. I liked the idea behind the movie a lot, the idea of marrying into this family where they play a game that could possible kill you. That’s insane! There’s other stuff that happens too that I was like “meh okay” but I think it works in this movie’s world and half the time you’re not even sure if these people are just crazy or if they’re serious. That’s the fun of it to be honest.  Plus, Grace is super competent as well so you’re not annoyed with her the entire movie.

Super Fun! This movie is so fun to watch! I had a good time. Even if you didn’t care for the storyline, I think it’s fun to just sit back and watch. The family dynamic is hilarious, the dialogue is great and the acting is fantastic and if you like violence, it’s here but it’s not “too much”. It fits in the frame of what the film sets up. Plus, I like the feel of the movie, you’re not really sure when it’s set but it feels “old” where Grace feels “other”. I like that aesthetic.

Cons: 

The Story Behind the Story. Obviously, you have the movie with the main stuff going on and there’s this other thing that the family talks about a lot. I think it’s a little ridiculous and at times, it feels out of place with the rest of the movie… at times. When the ending comes around, I cackled. It’s still ridiculous and I do think that part does make the movie feel… I mean it’s already crazy but less in reality? I guess is the best way to say it. You’ll know what I mean when you watch it lol.

Overall, Ready or Not is a really fun adventure to watch! It’s interesting and I really enjoyed myself. The cast is fantastic with Samara Weaving really doing a good job at being emotional, funny and badass all at the same time. You root for her. Adam Brody is also really good and his character is really interesting to watch throughout the film. Everyone else is great too. I think it’s really funny, I laughed a lot or I sat with a smile on my face. I think the premise is pretty different than what we’ve seen from other “horror” movies in the past. I know, I don’t watch a ton of horror but I know about them lol, I can make that assumption! My only problem, that I can at least think of and that I thought while watching the movie, is the whole… other part of the story. It’s funny but I wonder if you took that out, could the movie be the same? I think it could be but it just wouldn’t have that other thing as a reason why the family does this… anyways, check out Ready or Not. I recommend it!

Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars. 

Have you seen Ready or Not? If so, what are your thoughts? What is your favorite black comedy horror film? Let me know your thoughts in the comments below!

Thanks for reading!

Happy Holidays!