The final part of my favourite films of 2016 list
5. Rogue One
Whilst not as quite as personally revolutionary as The Force Awakens, Rogue One is still every bit a stunning cinematic experience as the franchise is used to. Great, diverse characters, beautiful visuals and the most jaw-dropping final ten minutes in any film of the past decade.
Highlight: Vader Violence
Not since Up has a film made me cry as much in the first few minutes. Arrival is a breathlessly beautiful, jaw-dropping, intelligent Sci-Fi whose message of peace is the perfect antidote for this dark time. Amy Adams is superb, Denis Villeneuve is one of the best talents working today and the score is sublime. A modern masterpiece.
Highlight: That first shot of the ship
3. The Edge of Seventeen
No list of my favourite films of any year would be complete without a teen high-school drama. Last year it was Paper Towns. Four years ago it was The Perks of Being a Wallflower. Now Hailee Steinfeld and writer/director Kelly Fremon Craig have conjured a heartbreaking, poignant addition to this list in The Edge of Seventeen.
Fantastic performances and wonderful music choices. I cried more than once as it perfectly captures the growing pains of adolescence.
Highlight: To Build a Home
2. Train to Busan
Sadly this is one of the lesser seen films here in the UK which is a shame because this zombie thriller is one of the most pulse-pounding, purely adrenaline-fueled experiences of the year. As a massive zombie fan, Train to Busan hits every one of my buttons but it also has the rich characters you might not expect to see. Bloody brilliant.
Highlight: Stop-off at the Station
Well, It’s clear I’m a Disney fan. Last year Inside Out topped my list with its beautiful story of growing up and emotional maturity. This year it’s the Polynesian based adventures of Disney’s newest heroine Moana that sails past all the competition.
A wonderful diverse lead, stunning animation and hilarious comedy are all enough to put this near the top of my list. Yet, it’s the fantastic songs from Lin-Manuel Miranda and co. that really sing for me. No other Disney film has enchanted me as much as this and I honestly love every single song on the soundtrack,
No other film this year has been as joyous as this. It may just top The Princess and the Frog to be my favourite Disney animation.
Highlight: “I’d rather be Shiny”
So, there we have it. It’s been a crackin’ year for movies. Blockbusters not so much but hey, I liked more of them than most. Generally, there’s been a wide range of fascinating movie experiences and I’m more excited than ever for 2017.