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.