A list seen this year across the U.S. and Sydney, and occasionally, VOD and mid-air.
In a slight change from years past, I can safely say I have a definitive favourite! Damien Chazelle’s La La Land. It felt like the ending this year needed, and I wouldn’t be mad if it swept every category at the Oscars. Truly an incredible achievement that left me in a state of euphoria for a good day and a half.
Initial tweet-reactions to the “5 star” films included. In alphabetical order, by star rating…
Youthful exuberance in middling, middle America. A joy. The performances and music make it. Andrea Arnold does it again.
My mind and heart are racing. Villeneuve nails melancholy, thanks in large to Adams.
La La Land
Pure happiness, magic and romance by a wizard named Chazelle! Music and acting are second to none. The cure for 2016.
Manchester by the Sea
Casey Affleck absolutely delivers in conveying, and likely elevating Lonergan’s complex, grief-filled story.
Touching and beautiful, fantastically acted. No on-screen meal has made me happier. That entire diner scene, really.
The transportive class struggles and human drama of Farhadi dialled up in ferocious style by Ma. Perfection.
One More Time with Feeling
Nick Cave has a power over me. Dominik’s eye and the subject matter heighten it to new levels. Floored. The link between emotion and creation, his honest articulation, the beautiful, beautiful B&W shots + direction. And of course, the songs.
Hunt for the Wilderpeople
O.J.: Made in America
The Neon Demon
10 Cloverfield Lane
Born to Be Blue
Don’t Think Twice
Embrace of the Serpent
Hell or High Water
Tale of Tales
The Hateful Eight
The Nice Guys
Captain America: Civil War
Everybody Wants Some!!
I, Daniel Blake
The Greasy Strangler
Batman v Superman
Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them
Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping
Star Trek: Beyond
Swiss Army Man
The Boy and the Beast
Son of Saul
The Jungle Book
The Light Between Oceans
Lo and Behold, Reveries of the Connected World