Since it’s the start of the new year, it would seem a good time to reflect on the films we got to see last year. I mean, with all the awards shows coming up, I just couldn’t help but get into the spirit of ranking the best and worst of 2018.
So, to celebrate the upcoming year of movies, as well as properly cap off last year’s roster, here is the list of films Pinkie and I saw this year and our quick thoughts on each one.
Each film will be given one of five ranks. They are as follows:
(Fucking amazing, 10/10, top quality movie)
(Good movie, had fun, would recommend)
(Neither good nor bad, didn’t leave much of an impression, totally meh, can skip)
(Bad movie, not fun, wouldn’t recommend)
(Fucking awful, 0/10, shit-tier movie)
I’m sure you’ve noticed, these rankings are incredibly broad. That’s the idea. This list is just a quick summary of our reactions and feelings towards all the films we’ve seen this past year. They’re hardly comprehensive reviews, and for me personally I won’t be basing these opinions on my rubric. These are purely emotional reviews based on some soul-searching reflection.
Also, just another note, I will be speaking on behalf of Pinkie. You see, as my lab assistant he doesn’t have the clearance to access the Lab by himself, but all of his opinions are his own. I’m just transcribing for him!
…so Pinkie says the reason I’m transcribing for him has nothing to do with his status as lab assistant, and he does indeed have clearance for the Lab.
Silly assistant. He’s got quite the ego, you know.
Now, without further ado, here’s Pinkie and Mad’s Best and Worst of 2018!
This film was a milestone – everyone knows that already. And, while I admire it for that, my love for Black Panther runs deeper than that.
Every aspect of this film wowed me. Like, as soon as the film opened and the Wakandan creation story began, I was enthralled and that feeling didn’t fade until the credits were over.
The visuals, the music, the story: all of these things gave me chills. They all moved me.
The music especially was just amazing. Personally, I love soundtracks with great percussion, and I’ve always loved the way African drums sound. Every scene where the score was based heavily around the percussion, especially Okoye’s fight with Klaue’s men in the underground casino, was so full of energy because of it!
I loved every member of the cast, and, goddamn it, all the stars looked beautiful. The costumes were amazing! Everything was just so colourful and vibrant and interesting to look at. I just can’t recommend this movie enough.
If it weren’t for a certain other superhero movie on this list, Black Panther would easily have been my best film of the year and my favourite super hero flick of all time.
A country full of black people…and a white guy still saves the day…
It added the cool aesthetic and gadgets of James Bond to African traditions through the vehicle of an amazing superhero film. What’s not to love?
Ready Player One
Part of me was tempted to put this as a Best, but the more I thought about it, the more I feel completely apathetic to the movie.
Don’t get me wrong, it was cute and fun and seeing all these classic characters (even if they’re all WB licenced) on the screen together was insanely cool. I’ve also heard that the film greatly improved upon the source material, and it’s pretty rare that a film adaptation is actually more well-received than the original product, so kudos there. However, I fell like, in the long run, this film just had little to no impact on me.
It’s one of those movies where, when I remember how I felt in the moment, I’d say it was one of the best. Unfortunately, in the long run, I just kind of didn’t care. I absorbed it, it happened to me, I liked it, but I didn’t want to see it again, I didn’t want the soundtrack, I only had a vague interest in reading the book, and I didn’t care at all about any of the merch.
In the end, Ready Player One was okay. Not good enough to be one of my favourite things this year, but very far from being a bad movie. Again, I did have fun watching it, and many of the jokes landed and the sequence in The Shining was phenomenal, also I totally squeed when I saw Serenity fly in to help save the day, but ultimately I just didn’t care enough.
It didn’t make me care.
I guess my biggest issue was that, while yes it played out exactly like movies with kid/teen protagonists would always play out in films when I was growing up, and that nostalgic feeling of “OMG a kids movie that FEELS like a kid’s movie to me!” was great and all, but it means they had to lean hard on some overdone tropes which made the movie feel more generic the more I thought about it later until I just stopped thinking about it altogether.
I don’t not recommend this movie. It’s a fun one. It’s just not a movie I could sit down and watch on repeat for a day, like some of the others on this list.
Spielberg doing Spielberg.
I know people will disagree, but fuck it, this movie was awesome.
Is it actually a good movie? No.
Was it fun? Hell yes!
This is some of the most fun I’ve had watching a movie in a long time. It was stupid, it was corny, but it was Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson teaming up with a giant albino gorilla with a filthy sense of humour to defeat a Bat-Wolf and a Dragon-Gator. What’s not to love?
Now this, of course, is coming from someone who’s a fan of B-movies, so I don’t think this film is for everyone. I mean, there are some pretty lewd jokes (the film even ends on one) that seems like they’re written specifically for 10-13 year-old boys, but it’s hardly abhorrent. The movie knows what it is and it’s not ashamed to pump up the ridiculousness to 11, and I love it for that.
I do recommend this movie to anyone who wants a film you can turn your brain off for and just watch some giant, CGI, mutant animals fight.
Considering we have to wait a while still before the next Godzilla movie, this should tide you over well enough.
God I wish we got to see more of the rat…
Avengers: Infinity War
I know this is probably be a controversial opinion, but yeah…
It was just okay.
I know many Marvel fans were excited and were highly anticipating this movie – so was I – but the problem is that we all knew what was going to happen. It’s Part 1 of a long, depressing story.
We knew characters would die. We knew it’d be sad. However, I was hoping for…well, I don’t know what I was hoping for really. Just something beyond what I was expecting. Some spectacle to keep me invested and entertained, but the fact is that Thanos being a meanie-po-peanie and his little grey general dudes who all get taken out rather quickly and unceremoniously in the end just isn’t enough for me.
This is only half a movie, or half a story, at least. Maybe once Part 2 comes out my opinion will change, but, as things stand right now, I get nothing from this film I wouldn’t also get from reading the synopsis on Wikipedia…
Also, fuck them for killing Star Lord when their entire defeat was 100% his fault. I won’t go into too much detail on this, as Pinkie and I are currently working on something that will eventually address this, but I think he should’ve been kept alive to face the consequences of his extremely stupid and selfish actions.
Yes, I know Marvel only wanted their OG Avengers for the final fight, but I actually don’t want Star Lord to fight Thanos in the end. I just want him to actually have to face what he’s done and see him fall into despair.
I want to see him have to face his own shittiness, I want to see Tony actively try not to kill him as he’s working to escape the planet and get home, and I want to see him curl up and wait for death as the weight of his actions crush him.
Considering Disney’s sacked James Gunn and we’re unsure as to whether or not they’ll use his script, this would provide an opportunity for some excellent character development and maybe a reason to bring in the OG Guardians, as GotG Vol. 2 ended with them teaming up again.
You just let him completely off the hook by poofing him, and considering it’s his fault half the universe is dead – including Spider-Man, Black Panther, and Wasp and her parents – he deserves to fucking face that and feel that.
Thanos was right. If you, like, turn your head to the side a little bit…and ignore the mass murder and genocide…and the fact that he could have just wished to double the amount of resources in the universe…
I loved this movie.
I loved the first one and I loved this one too. It was an excellent sequel!
I was a little disappointed that Cable was playing by Josh Brolin instead of my personal choice, Stephen Lang, but he ended up playing the part well. I was also a little disappointed they didn’t do more with Domino’s costume. I mean, this was a huge controversy at the time because they decided to flip her colour scheme (dark skin with a light eye patch instead of pale skin with a dark eye patch), but all I wanted was for her eye patch to look a little bigger and more white. It just didn’t stand out enough, and knowing that her character has bleached skin because she was tortured, something about the little skin condition around her eye just didn’t seem dramatic enough for her. Despite that, I loved her performance (she was amazing!) and I love her hair. I wish my hair could look that cool. 🙁
I will say that I liked the first one better – I liked the villain more; Ed Skrein is a sexy gem – but this movie satisfied any desire for a sequel. The action was good, the jokes landed, the touching moments were sufficiently schmaltzy and gave me the warm fuzzies.
Also the Celine Dion theme song is great. I listen to it a lot when I’m driving around, along with my other movie soundtracks.
Even though I liked this movie, I’m kind of hoping they don’t do another one. I wouldn’t mind an X-Factor movie where he’s one of the ensemble, but I don’t think we need another Deadpool movie. It was playing with fire making the first two, and I don’t want them to ruin one of my favourite comic book characters.
If you haven’t seen Deadpool 2 yet, I definitely recommend it! Just be warned, it’s pretty gory. 😉
The first one was better.
Solo: A Star Wars Story
Solo, Solo, Solo. What can I say about poor ol’ Solo?
I mean, for starters, Disney should have trusted Lord and Miller to complete the fucking movie.
Do I really need to go into detail as to why Solo was a massive piece of crap? I mean, Pinkie and I are planning to get into it down the road, but do I have to do it now?
It was boring, for one. There was zero creativity in any of it, I can barely remember any of the newly-introduced characters – which is actually totally fine because almost all of them die anyway – and, the worst sin of all, they made Han a goddamn joke.
At least if the movie was a comedy, like Lord and Miller were intending, Solo would have been fun. I’m not one of those Star Wars fans who thinks Han Solo is this infallible echelon of cool. I think he’s a goofball and a bit of a loser, but in the best of ways. He’s a hot-headed idiot with charm out the wazoo, BUT WHERE WAS ANY OF THAT?
This was a film written as a comedy but all the punchlines were cut in order to make it more “serious”. What the fuck ever. Rogue One was the first “serious” Star Wars movie, and I really don’t think we needed another. Especially not when dealing with everyone’s favourite space pirate (aside from Treasure Planet’s Long John Silver and Malcolm Reynolds, of course).
This was a fucking waste of money and I’m glad it flopped. We can only hope Disney will learn from this and remember that Star Wars was not and will not ever be taken THAT seriously. It wasn’t that long ago that Disney World had Darth Vader doing the Gangnam Style dance, for fucks sakes. Lighten up.
Well…it was a film about Han Solo…
The Incredibles 2
I really struggled rating this one. I wasn’t entirely sure whether or not it deserved a Best rating. Seriously.
After almost a year since seeing it last, I have to say The Incredibles 2 didn’t leave much of an impact long-term.
I did like this movie, don’t get me wrong. I just can’t help but think of how much I adored the original movie and how when I think of going to watch an Incredibles movie, I’d much rather go back and watch the first one.
Part of this, I think, is because the villain in this movie was kind of weak. Pinkie thought Screenslaver’s plan was awfully circuitous, which is his pet peeve, and I have to say I agree with him. It just makes very little sense to me. Like, I get it to some degree, because it’s clear this plan is based around emotions instead of logic, but it feels like that’s just a weak excuse for the writers to use to work around the fact their villain’s motive was just kind of an even more moustache-twirling, one-dimensional motivation than Syndrome’s. Also the reveal was pretty weak, to be honest.
The movie’s strongest aspects were around the titular Incredibles, so the fact that the villain was weak was kind of fine. Seeing Elastigirl kick butt was really fun, and the struggle between Robert Parr and Jack-Jack was hilarious. I took my dad to go see the movie with me, and I could just tell he could relate to the papa struggles. I don’t think he ever had to bribe me with cookies to behave, though. And I didn’t start teleporting around until I was much older than Jack-Jack.
All-in-all, this movie was enjoyable. I’m happy that we finally got a sequel to one of my favourite Pixar movies, and I’m glad that it was a much better sequel than the one for my favourite Pixar movie, Monsters Inc.
Also all the Elastigirl memes were pretty entertaining. Lewd and a little disturbing, but amusing nonetheless.
We can only hope that this bodes well for Toy Story 4…we’ll see about that.
The first one was better.
Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom
This was shit.
Absolute, unmitigated, unfiltered shit.
I fucking love dinosaurs. I have since I was, like, three-years-old. I used to watch Walking With Dinosaurs on repeat for fun. I owned almost all the Land Before Time Movies at one point. Dinosaur is still one of my favourite Disney movies. I plan on going to visit the new ankylosaur exhibit at the ROM more than once this year. I wanted to be a paleontologist when I grew up.
Do you know what all this means?
It means: I DON’T WANT TO SPEND 2 HOURS IN A MOVIE THEATER WATCHING DINOSAURS DIE IN INCREASINGLY UPSETTING AND PAINFUL WAYS.
I haven’t been this angry at a movie in a LONG time.
Firstly, I was bored for 99% of it. More bored than I’ve ever been at any fucking movie I’ve seen in theatres. There were several moments when I actually contemplated just closing my eyes and trying to get some sleep, but I felt bad leaving Pinkie behind to deal with it. He was in physical pain watching it. I’ve never seen him sit so stiffly in a theatre. It was really eerie.
Not even the volcano could make it interesting, and then that entire sequence on the island capped off with a long, morbid shot of my favourite dino species, the glorious Brachiosaur, dying in flames because lava and pyroclastic surge.
Also, apparently Chris Pratt is immune to pyroclastic surges? Hmm, too bad the people of Pompeii and Herculaneum didn’t know the trick to avoiding death by volcano was just, y’know, running. Because that’s what that big black cloud that hits him is. It’s fucking burning hot ash and it would have killed him instantly.
“But it’s just a movie,” I hear you say.
It’s also a matter of BELIEVABILITY. YOU CANNOT OUTRUN A VOLCANO. At least in the movie Pompeii, only Keifer Sutherland seems to be somewhat immune to volcanos, but 1. it was hilarious, and 2. he still FUCKING dies.
Secondly, fuck that ending. Why, why, WHY would you directly reference the FUCKING HOLOCAUST when it comes to animals dying!?!?!?!? Not even Watership Down went that far, and it had to deal with animals suffocating to death in a horrific fashion! Like, Jesus Christ guys, did ANY of you think about this? None of you people saw the parallels with the whole cement basement and poison gas and LIVING THINGS CRUSHING EACH OTHER TO TRY AND GET AIR!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?
Either you didn’t notice, or you did it on fucking purpose. The former is fucking incompetent and the latter is just disgusting.
Maybe I’m just sensitive because my father is a historian, so I grew up learning about the World Wars and I take this shit seriously, but shouldn’t everybody? It’s a dick move for films to use 9/11 to generate sympathy, so it’s a fucking dick move to use the Holocaust too.
Fucking shit. I’d burn every goddamned copy if I could.
Aren’t dinosaurs cool guys? When they’re on fire… Or suffocating to death…?
Clichéd story, pretty visuals. That’s it.
Ant-Man and the Wasp
I don’t care what people say about these movies, I love them!
I really liked the first Ant-Man movie, despite what people said about it, and I like this one even more!
It retains all the charm and adorableness from the first movie, while introducing a much more compelling villain and bringing in Hope as Wasp, who is a total badass and so much fun to watch!
I’m not even sure how to describe why I loved this movie so much. It was just fun!
I thought the fight scenes with Ghost, especially the initial one between her and Wasp, were really creative and interesting. They took advantage of the fact that they had a character who could phase through stuff, and it made for some really interesting and tense action scenes.
Also, seeing more of the microverse was really cool. It’s very weird and the waterbugs were almost cute, if they didn’t try to also eat Hank. I also thought Hank’s character was a little more fleshed out in this movie, as he seemed like less of a dick and more like he was actually trying to mend ties with Hope by including her in his search for Janet. Their story together was really sweet, and I’m really glad that we got to see more of Janet as well.
Oh yeah! Randall Park as FBI agent Jimmy Woo was hilarious. I thought his character was just so adorable and ridiculous. He was a great addition as a sort-of secondary antagonist to the film. Also seeing him try to figure out card tricks was just too precious.
And I can’t tell you how happy I am that Michael Peña gets to do his story-telling shtick from the first movie! It’s so good, and seeing Evangeline Lilly act out to his voice-work was to die for. It just showed to me that she must have a very good sense of humour that we just don’t get to see very often on-screen since she usually plays more serious roles. I’ve really loved her in everything I’ve seen her in, though, ever since LOST, and I’m so glad she gets to be a superhero now!
The one thing I didn’t like about the film was the post-credit scene. Not because it wasn’t good, no not at all. It was a good scene, but it was sad. It made my poor mother very upset (especially since she hadn’t seen Infinity War so didn’t know what the hell was going on), and I was actually really disappointed that Wasp got zapped. I was kind of hoping that Marvel would subvert us a little and maybe zap Ant-Man, or just zap her parents…I dunno. I just didn’t like Avengers: Infinity War leaking into my Ant-Man and the Wasp! And no amount of giant ants playing Rock Band could make up for the emotional trauma.
Other than that, though, it’s a fantastic movie. 🙂
It was really enjoyable, but Ghost’s motivations were a bit transparent.
Mission Impossible: Fallout
I’ve seen, like, two Mission Impossible movies: the first one and Ghost Protocol. I’m certainly not as well versed on the tropes as many movie-goers out there, and despite this I could see every “twist” and “turn” coming a mile away. And every time I thought they had committed to a possible break from the status quo – like the film exploring the consequences of nuclear fallout, as the name implies – it just snaps back to formula.
I mean, watching Tom Cruise invent new death traps for himself is entertaining and all but…wait…no it isn’t. The man’s a father…
Y’know, maybe he should seek some therapy, I dunno…
My point is, the movie is painfully formulaic and not even the inclusion of cool action set pieces or Henry Cavil making the Ned Flanders moustache even sexier than it already is could make it fun.
Although, knowing that said moustache cost Warner Bros. millions of dollars did bring me some sick pleasure unrelated to the film.
Here was the perfect opportunity to shake things up and completely change how the MI movies would play out in the future, and instead they chose to double-down on an idea that became tired and over-used ten years ago. When other films can use your own damn tropes ironically and still provide more for the viewer, then you know you’re time has long since passed unless you take a chance and try to up the ante, and upping the ante doesn’t mean more elaborate and dangerous stunts…
Like, what even was the titular “fallout”? This film had ZERO fucking consequences. The team doesn’t fail, Tom Cruise’s character doesn’t finally lose faith and become a villain, and no bombs actually go off. NOTHING CHANGES! Well…Alec Baldwin died, but who really cares? He’s a better Trump than a CIA overlord.
And the music sucked. When it wasn’t leaning on the theme song, it was nothing, and the rest leaned on the theme song so hard that it just became embarrassing…
You get to the point that you’ve seen enough Mission Impossible movies that you can anticipate the twist. I was hoping they’d take my anticipation and subvert it. When the movie delivered exactly what I expected it to, I realized that this franchise no longer has any tricks up its sleeve. Or faces to pull off dramatically…
I laughed my ASS off when I saw the first trailer for this movie. I just knew this was something I had to see. I mean, it’s Jaws but bigger, how could I resist?
The movie wasn’t total trash either!
Oh, it’s not a good movie, not by any means, but it was short and sweet and amusing as hell.
It actually had way more effort put into it than it probably deserved, as well, especially considering it delves into some pretty heavy subject matter. You read correctly. This movie about a megalodon eating boats full of people gets pretty deep. It deals with serious PTSD and its effects on people and the psychological repercussions of “Lesser of Two Evils” decision-making during crises.
There’s actually this character in the film that Pinkie and I immediately hated because for the first thirty or so minutes of screen time, he just won’t stop giving Jason Statham’s character shit for leaving two of Statham’s friends behind during an underwater search-and-rescue because the sub was about to collapse and would have killed everyone – including the asshole complaining about the other two rescue workers – and the entire mission would have been a failure. Like, EXCUSE YOU, asshole. You’re only alive because he made the fucking call to leave his friends behind to save your ungrateful ass, then YOU get his ass fired by spreading lies about his mental health under pressure because YOU snapped under pressure, you weak ass, piddly excuse of a man!
Sorry. Went on a bit of a tangent there.
But seriously, a film called The Meg should NOT have been able to get me this emotionally invested in a character. I was actually gunning really hard for Statham’s character BECAUSE that other asshole existed. And then the asshole actually apologizes later and admits he was wrong, which was nice and, again, not something you’d expect from a film like this. He wasn’t turned into some secondary bad-guy, they just resolve their differences and move on with the story.
It’s silly, it’s dumb, and the movie knows that. It embraced it’s ridiculous premise and ran with it, and I had a blast because of that. I’m not exactly gagging to see it again, but I’m actually kind of curious now about what the book’s like.
Maybe I’ll check it out for a future review? 😉
Oh Jesus Christ…
Look, we all knew it was gonna be shit. This movie was doomed.
HOWEVER, to me one of the funniest things in the world is a trash horror movie. Honestly better than most straight comedies out there, in my opinion. Of all the things I thought this movie would be, I never expected it would be BORING.
Watching this movie was simply excrutiating. Pinkie and I riffed on it a lot while we were watching it (don’t worry, we were in a drive-in theatre so we weren’t bothering anyone by doing so) and just ended up feeling confused and headachy by the end. I swear we were paying attention, even if we were goofing on it a lot. It’s just…the plot and the characters and the goddamn monster don’t make a damn lick of sense!
Several spooky scenes from the trailer weren’t in the film, which didn’t help with the confusion. Scenes just kind of stopped short of where the scares from the trailer were clearly supposed to happen and just moved on. They didn’t even try replacing some of their own spoiled scares with alternate cuts, like other horror movies do. They were just fucking gone, leaving us with absolutely nothing. Nothing scary, nothing funny, just nothing…
Also, having been a teenager during the height of the Creepypasta era as well as the Slender Man game surge, I was left confused by what the writers and filmmakers were trying to accomplish. I mean, you have an entire internet’s worth of stories about this fucking thing to choose from, you have a goddamn real-life court case around some very disturbed individuals trying to summon Slender Man through murder, and this is the best you could come up with? This was it?
He doesn’t even affect or kill his victims in similar ways…like, how am I supposed to be scared of this thing if it has no rules and there’s no chance of escape? At a certain point, as a viewer, you kind of just go, “Alright so they’re all gonna die…k”. I mean, I’ve always thought that the root of horror was suspense, y’know? The concept that the characters who you’re supposed to care about MIGHT actually make it out okay. What makes horror bad, on a fundamental level, is usually making us not care about the characters involved, and by doing nothing but show us that there is no “out” for these girls, that they’ll either end up catatonic or dead, means that I don’t fucking care. Maybe if this was more of a gore-fest or had some torture porn there’d be at least something to look at, but that’s hardly the way you make a good horror film.
Also, and I might be wrong here, but I was under the impression that Slender Man’s gimmick was that he stalked and kidnapped kids and they’re never seen again – kind of like old-school Celtic fairies who were total dicks, only they at least left behind a demon-child (or changeling) for the parents to unknowingly raise instead of their kid. Since when does he turn people insane or kill them by tree? Because part of the interest around the Slender Man is around where the kids go when he takes them! Does he drag them to hell? Does he kill them and collect their souls like some ghoulish pied piper? Or does he float them off to candy land and he’s actually the nicest being in the world who cares for the kids he takes?
At least the first girl who goes missing it sounds like the legend actually held true, but after that it was like, “Huh, what’s scary? Dying! Dying is scary. Let’s kill some people”. Honestly, I think the film would have been a lot scarier if the girls just all started to disappear one-by-one and you never find out what happened to them instead of this bullshit nonsense the filmmakers came up with that changes with every scene.
This movie was just an unfunny joke that stole creepy shit from other horror things and removed the creepy.
I mean, come on. Slender Man turns kids into trees? Bitch please. Wytches did that shit back in 2014 and it’s a million times scarier than this.
If you were thinking of watching this movie, even as a joke, just don’t. Read Wytches instead! It’s apparently what this stupid film wanted to be.
Ten years too late.
I’ve seen a lot of people out there claiming that this was the worst horror movie they’ve seen in a long time.
Clearly none of them watched Slender Man…
I gained a new appreciation for horror because of Slender Man, so I found this movie adequately spooky.
I’m not terribly fond of horror movies in general. There are, of course, exceptions, but often I find them either not scary at all – in which case I class them as comedy – or they scare me so badly I’m likely going to break the hand of the person sitting next to me.
The Nun didn’t quite get me to either place, but it did lean more towards hand-breaking spooks as opposed to pissing-myself-with-laughter.
The director clearly knew how to handle horror and was able to make a series of very creepy, atmospheric scenes. There were also many scenes that, instead of doing cheap jump scares, provided quiet moments of genuine terror with blink-and-you’ll-miss-it spooks from time to time.
Unfortunately, the movie’s biggest flaw was that it was forgettable. I mean, clearly Pinkie and I saw A LOT of movies this year, and we completely forgot about this movie until the last minute. This is the last addition to the list. So, even though I remember it spooking me plenty at the time, it was a film that is easily forgotten.
Considering it comes from The Conjuring Universe, it could have done a lot more to feel necessary or at least scary. That damn movie is still the freakiest thing I’ve ever watched. Aside from Leprechaun in the Hood 2… I still have nightmares…
Sister Act was scarier.
Oh come on. You’re only saying that because you don’t feel anything.
The Sisters Brothers
John C. Reilly. Joaquin Phoenix. Jake Gyllenhaal. Riz Ahmed. In a Western. Sounds like a great combination on paper…
A lot of movies tend to really divide critics and the audience. This is definitely one of those movies.
I’ve seen a lot of hate thrown this film’s way for what I feel are silly reasons. Like complaining that it feels like an early 2000s superhero movie. What exactly is wrong with that?
The Sam Raimi Spider-Man movies are from the 2000s. The original X-Men movies, who gave us Hugh Jackman as Wovlerine, were from the 2000s. The Incredible Hulk is from the 2000s. I mean…so was the other Hulk movie…but we don’t speak of that one…
And, while I know this is another controversial opinion, Daredevil – which I like and think is a fun movie – came out in the 2000s.
I take offence to the notion that just because something isn’t “serious” or “gritty” or “realistic” it’s automatically shit.
I’m not entirely sure what people were expecting from this movie. It’s about Venom. I mean, I know Spider-Man 3 didn’t do the character any justice, but it’s like people were almost expecting more of that? They wanted pure body horror. They wanted Venom to be a monster. But I guess these people haven’t read the comics, because while yes Venom is all these things, he’s also a total fucking loser. Pinkie and I have talked about this a lot, and we both think that this is a good representation of what Venom is.
He’s a product of 90s comics, which were all edgy, EXTREME, super-macho bullshit. Or at least, the stuff that caused the comics crisis of the 90s was like that. Presenting Venom as this total dork and loser who thinks he’s hot shit is actually kind of perfect considering where he started, and what he’s become since then. I get that fans of the “true 90s” comics might be upset they didn’t keep him a stone-cold killer, but I’m glad they added levity. After having to watch Amazing Spider-Man 2 and everything Zack Snyde- related in DC, I’m sick of hero movies being shoved into this Nolan-esque cookie cutter, whether the film would fit this style or not.
Venom might be a dark character (quite literally), but let’s not forget that the guy who initially created him was going to make it spawn from a woman who’d had a miscarriage during one of Spider-Man’s fights with a costumed villain and she wants to kill him for that. Also he defecates from his mouth. All that drool? It’s poop. Symbiote poop.
Venom’s fucking ridiculous, so let him be that!
I could go on defending this movie – and the 2000s superhero flicks – forever, but that would make this article so much longer than it already is.
I’ll just sum up my point with this:
This year has gifted us comic nerds with two of the best superhero movies ever, the best Fox superhero movie sequel ever, the longest awaited Pixar sequel ever, the best insect-based hero team-up since Bug’s Life, the most widely anticipated superhero movie of all time, and Avengers: Infinity War.
All jokes aside, despite all the quality films on the roster, I heard more laughter and happy, satisfied sounds from the audience in Venom than I did watching any other superhero movie this year.
Movies are allowed to be fun, and Venom was exactly that.
Best rom-com of the year!
A Star Is Born
Look, my problem with this film is that I don’t care about Bradley Cooper. That is unless he’s voicing a raccoon, and even then I’d prefer Hugh Jackman.
Bad Times at the El Royale
I’m comfortable enough with my heterosexuality to say that Chris Hemsworth was yummy. 🙂
It takes a man I already love and makes me love him more by showing his flaws as well as his accomplishments.
Finally, a movie I’ve seen without Pinkie.
Considering this was a movie I thought I was going to outright hate, the fact that I’m putting it as a “fine” is saying something.
I’ve already reviewed this movie in full, and I’ve said what I liked and disliked about the movie there. TL;DR though, it was cute, it wasn’t too terribly obnoxious, the animation was pretty, and I’m fucking done with goat screams.
Also Bricklebaum is the cutest.
THIS WAS FUCKING SWEET.
From the moment this movie started and it gave us an old-timey title over the first scene of the movie, as though this film had been made during the silver age, I was in love.
This film didn’t perform well at the box office and I’m not sure why. It was a BLAST! It’s what the Resident Evil movies wish they were. There were Nazi zombies who get killed. There was a rapey Nazi who gets tortured and then later becomes a tank-like villain who gets blown the fuck up. There was a diverse cast of characters, from an abrasive New Yorker down to a cute little French boy, and those two become, like, best friends.
Oh, yeah, and also the protagonists are an adorable teen soldier played by Jovan Adepo and a kickass French girl played by Mathilde Ollivier.
OH! And and and Kurt Russel’s son, Wyatt Russel was in the film, and dang he cute and a really good actor. He was a fantastic tough guy.
And back to the rapey Nazi, he was played by a Danish fellow named Pilou Asbæk. Maybe you’ve heard of him? He played Pontious Pilate in that Ben-Hur remake nobody saw, Bouchard in The Great Wall, and Batou in the live-action Ghost in the Shell film everyone hated before it even came out…
Oh, and he played everyone’s favourite sultry seadog in Game of Thrones, Euron Greyjoy!
He’s had quite the career so far!
Honestly, I think he’s a great actor, and I liked him as Batou and Euron, so seeing him come to this movie and ruin whatever charm he had with the last two characters I’ve seen him as was GREAT. He played a magnificent creep and the build up to his character transformation was so perfect and satisfying.
But I think my favourite part about this movie is how much fun it was. It knew it wasn’t something high brow or anything that critics would like (actually turned out the critics DID like it…Goddamn that’s a hell of an achievement), so they pushed past all the shit and just made something ridiculous and, fuck, it was awesome. I mean, Nazi zombies has never served video games wrong. Well…that’s not true, but it’s a fun subject to explore, especially if you want to go for horror. WWII is the perfect setting for some horror shit, and this film succeeds in not only being a fun, over-the-top action movie, but it also succeeds at being a really creepy horror!
I mean, after Slender Man, fuckin’ Teletubbies would be creepy.
Actually…they kind of are, aren’t they? Like, what’s in the tubby custard?… Maybe some questions were never meant to be asked.
Look, my point is SEE THIS MOVIE. Do it. This thing didn’t make that much back, so let’s pump up the DVD sales! This thing should be a cult classic, and it would make a great addition to a “I want to see Nazis in pain” movie night!
Let’s see, we have Overlord now, so what would go well with it… well, Inglorious Basterds, of course, and Dead Snow, and…you know what? Cap the night off with The Great Dictator and The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas!
Yep. That’s a great lineup right there, folks.
Totally makes sense to put em’ together.
The best part was when the kid got shot.
Oh my God, Pinkie!
What? We can’t all be Quicksilver. Wait…
Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald
Oh boy…this is awkward.
I know some of you will be looking at this really confused. I mean, I reviewed Crimes of Grindelwald already, didn’t I? I gave it a solid B+, or 78%, didn’t I?
Yes…I did…and then I found out a little more of the context surrounding this movie.
Now, do I think this movie ON ITS OWN is the worst? No. That’s what Pinkie thinks. Me, on the other hand, I think it was fine. I enjoyed the experience and liked it well enough. I stand by the mark I gave it in my review.
HOWEVER, Pinkie brought to my attention the plans for the future Fantastic Beasts movies.
I was confused by this news. “Movies?” I thought. “Wasn’t Fantastic Beasts meant to be a trilogy?”
No. No, apparently it wasn’t. I’m not sure why I assumed it was, but I did and now my opinion of the film has changed for the worse. I guess I felt like the story in this movie really set up a trilogy. We had the first movie introduce the big villain and the object of desire and the second film shows the villain obtaining the object of desire and the good guys at their lowest, but hopeful as they have a plan for success. This would suggest, to a normal person, that the next film would then be the climax: they find out how to break the blood bond between Grindelwald and Dumbledore, they go kick Grindy’s ass. End of story.
They have five movies planned. That means THREE more after this one. Knowing this, I can’t defend the movie anymore. I just don’t see how there could be enough story to make more. I thought it was a stretch to make a trilogy out of this idea, but making it a full-blown five-part saga? Uh uh. No.
J.K…honey…I know this makes you money, but you’re already richer than most people combined. I can’t imagine she’s doing this out of love for her own property, considering the heavy retcons and edits to previously established lore under the guise of “I had this planned ALL ALONG guys! Totally,” so I have to assume it’s for the monetary gain. And that’s no reason to make a fantasy series.
You make fantasy because you’re in love with amazing worlds and magic and things beyond our imagining. You don’t make it because you want bank. That’s how you get piles of shit wearing the decaying skin suits of beloved properties begging you for alms.
I feel like I can’t sum up my feelings for it in 50 words or less…
Uh, Pinkie, you can write something longer if you want.
I feel like it climaxes too early and then just lies there…waiting for you to leave…
…That was less than 50 words.
Huh…I guess I could do it! 😀
Ralph Breaks the Internet
I wasn’t terribly interested in seeing this movie, but I’m really glad Pinkie dragged me to it. It was actually adorable. I ended up liking this one more than the first movie.
The moral lesson of the film is one I haven’t seen in kids movies, like, at all, and I think it’s an important one for kids to learn. I can think of many people I’ve known in my life who could’ve done with a dose of what this movie had to offer, and it was a lesson that they didn’t have to beat you over the head with in order to get the message across.
And the animation was great! They had so much fun designing and playing with this concept, and so I ended up having a lot of fun watching it.
For example, they have popups and one of the popups makes friends with Ralph and Vanellope, and he has a friend named Gord who they meet later. Gord is my favourite. The animation they did on him is just fantastic. He always looks like he’s melting and he’s so goddamn wrong looking.
It also has some of the darkest humour I’ve seen in a long time, with the funniest scene coming at the end of the movie as a mid-credit scene. The film was so much funnier and ambitious than I thought it would be. I definitely recommend it to anyone who has kids in their life. It’s one of those movies that adults and younglings can both enjoy, and there haven’t been too many of those in the last few years. We got two this year from Disney, so yay!
The best John C. Reilly film of the year.
Ohhhh…I wanted to like this movie so much.
I was even willing to give it a Fine instead of Worst, because I had fun watching it. The opening scene alone would have propelled it into fine for me, because it’s so fucking good, and I love the aesthetic. I mean, I’ve always been a fan of steampunk and I’ve always wanted that style to get a little more mainstream love – not TOO much mainstream love, just a little bit – so seeing this movie with its giant predator cities and all this cool old Victorian architecture from London and the really cool aircity and stuff…then Pinkie found this:
That’s a quotation from the director of the film talking about the film’s aesthetic style…
Dude…it’s fucking steampunk. Just…no.
And sure, someone who’s more versed in Steampunk culture might come here to rant about how it’s not ACTUALLY steampunk, but whatever. My point is, steampunk is the first thing that came to my mind when I saw the film, it’s the first thing Pinkie thought of when he read the book years ago, and it’s something that the director so obviously wanted the film to NOT be, yet clearly couldn’t get away from because the setting is INHERENTLY STEAMPUNKY.
Like, fuck off with this, “we didn’t want to make it overtly steampunk” but its “obviously in the books” shit. I want to respect Christian Rivers because he’s worked on stuff I love, like Peter Jackson’s Lord of the Rings trilogy and King Kong remake. He also directed one of the best scenes from The Hobbit trilogy, the barrel escape in the first film. He clearly has talent, but this quotation makes him sound like a complete idiot. WHY would you avoid styling your film around what it was CLEARLY meant to be?! That would be like refusing to use viking designs for adapting J. R. R. Tolkien’s dwarves for the big screen! IT WAS PUT THERE IN THE BOOKS FOR A REASON!
He also claims that he wanted this film to stand out from other post apocalyptic things, like Mad Max: Fury Road and The Hunger Games… THEN USE STEAMPUNK. NEITHER OF THOSE MOVIES ARE REMOTELY CLOSE TO THAT! By actively fighting the source material’s style, Rivers has unfortunately created a film that is so painfully bland and generic that I couldn’t help but NOT mistake it for either of the films he cited he hoped to avoid emulating. Well kudos there, bud, you certainly didn’t do that.
I mean, it’s about as bland as The Hunger Games Mockingjay movies, from what Pinkie’s told me, but I remember the first two movies had enough style to skirt by as okay movies.
This film was just so lost and confused with what it was trying to be, it was hard to get immersed.
Were there some cool scenes? Yes. Was the theme music pretty good? Yeah. Were there some cool set pieces? Yes! Was there a really cool zombie-robot who made Pinkie and I laugh our asses off because he was such a stone cold badass that he could just walk through anything without even flinching who was made immediately better once we found out he was played by Stephen Lang? YES!
Alas, these few points towards the film unfortunately don’t negate the fact that it was a clear creative misfire, and the fact that the director couldn’t even explain what he wanted the film to look like, let along actually execute it properly, makes this probably the most disappointing movie of the year for me.
It was, however, hilarious that Hugo Weaving’s villain almost succeeded in killing the protagonist by triggering some repressed memories of him fucking Hester’s mom in front of her. Anyone who’s seen the movie will know what I’m talking about, and I’m sorry but that’s the only way I can interpret that scene because it is by no means a surprise that he’s her fucking dad (he says it himself), and considering it immediately flashes to him getting pretty handsy with her mom which causes her to cringe long enough for him to get the upper hand… I mean, come on. We all know that’s what happened.
RIP to any child who has walked in on their parents having sex.
Type F in the comments to pay respects.
Hugo Weaving’s best role since Megatron.
I already have a review of this movie too, so I can’t say much else.
Go see this movie!
What she said.
I did not want to see this movie.
I told Pinkie I did not want to see this movie.
Pinkie forced me to see this movie.
Thank you, Pinkie.
Seriously, I am so glad I saw this movie! I’m sad that it’s not making a ton of money, but I guess it’s not really surprising. I mean, after Transformers: The Last Knight, I was fuckin’ burnt out as well. It was such a pile of shit I refuse to believe it wasn’t done on purpose. It had to be a troll. There’s no way Michael Bay is that STUPID to think that that film was a good effort on his part.
It made money though…it made money…ugh.
And now this film, this wonderful fan-servicey (not THAT kind, Christ) film isn’t making its money. It’s a fucking crime.
I fell in love with this movie with the opening scene. Want to know why? Because it took place on Cybertron. And not Cybertron from the Michael Bay universe of Transformers. No. It took place on CYBERTRON. MY Cybertron. My mum’s Cybertron. The Cybertron of the 80s. ACTUAL FUCKING CYBERTRON.
Then we cut down into the action, as from above we’ve already seen how there is war raging below, and we see Transformers. Actual Transformers. The first one I saw that made me really register what I was seeing was Arcee. And holy shit, it was actually Arcee, just as she is in the 80s movie. Then I started looking around at all the other Autobots, and they all look like they did in the 80s. Then in comes Soundwave, and he looks and SOUNDS like he did in the 80s with his super-synth voice. And then Optimus Prime shows up and kicks fuckin’ ass! And he looks like himself and sounds like himself and not like the voice actor wants to go take some cyanide!!! And then some of them start transforming AND THEY MAKE THE SOUND. You know the sound. THEY ACTUALLY MAKE IT.
I could have fucking cried.
After more than ten years of movies with overly-complicated-looking robots, and overly-complicated plots, and disgustingly misogynistic camerawork, and a ridiculous need to make the Transformers macho assholes, I FINALLY got to look at a big screen full of Transformers and feel like I did when I was little watching the movie with my mum for the first time.
It was magic.
I wasn’t even mad when the humans showed up. Hell, they actually felt like they belonged in the plot. Bumblebee wasn’t just a side character, and the girls weren’t shot like this was a demo reel for pornography, and the explosions weren’t obnoxiously over-the-top! There was an actual plot with character development! PRAISE BE!
Now was this a perfect movie? No. It had it’s problems, especially when it came to soundtrack and soundmixing, but I hardly noticed that because I was so happy that something with Transformers in it didn’t make me curl up in a ball and just cease to exist until the movie mercifully ended sixteen hours later.
I also appreciated how it completely retcons all of the Michael Bay movies.
I know it isn’t making huge profits in-theatres, but I hope the future films see that this movie was just better and use the continuity this one sets up. Or at least keep the sound design for the transformations and the character models. PLEASE. <3
Like Herbie the Love Bug, but with explosions! And I’m okay with that.
Now this was a fucking dark horse if ever there was one.
Who’d have thought that years after The Dark Knight we’d all be saying the next best DC film would be Aquaman?
Wonder Woman was, of course, also amazing, but I know a lot of people didn’t find it as good as it could have been, and I’ll admit Aries’ moustache was really distracting. However, Wonder Woman was a milestone in a different field. Wonder Woman brought us lady-geeks a film that FINALLY had a competent, badass woman as the leading hero in a film. I will always love that movie because of this fact, and that now because of Wonder Woman, people are giving female superheroes a legitimate chance on the big screen. Let’s face it, we’re really only getting Captain Marvel because Wonder Woman did so well. We all know it.
However, Aquaman is the first DCEU film featuring a male protagonist that isn’t full of just pure, unfiltered, machismo and bullshit. I mean, we kind of all knew Wonder Woman was going to be okay (or at least I thought it was going to be okay) because she was, like, the coolest part in BvS. Aquaman though? Hasn’t he been the butt of every joke since Super Friends?
The answer is yes.
I’ve liked Aquaman for a long time – mostly because he was a joke, and after expressing to my dad how Aquaman totally sucks when I was younger and he went on a grand lecture about all the cool stuff Aquaman can actually do and I realized just how cool he is – and I was really hoping that this movie was going to be good. I was scared that what the trailers were promising wouldn’t be delivered.
Well, I can now safely affirm that Aquaman deserves every bit of it’s almost one billion in box office revenue (I hope this doesn’t age this post horribly). It’s actually amazing that it’s making so much money, and why not!?
I love fantasy, and I love some good, creative special effects, and that’s exactly what you get from this movie.
Jason Momoa is a goddamn gem and he’s just so pretty and funny and badass. He’s the perfect Aquaman.
Everyone on the cast was actually fantastic, especially Patrick Wilson. Holy shit, he is having so much fun as Ocean Master.
Also, can I just say God bless James Wan for giving the characters their actual fucking costumes. Like, goddamn, he made those ridiculous purple and orange outfits for our two leading men look AMAZING. Fuck it, EVERYONE looked amazing!
And damn the stupid Academy for snubbing Aquaman on Best Visual Effects this year. Fucking prudes. I mean, hell, if Suicide Squad can win Best Makeup during the same year that Star Trek: Beyond was a thing, then Aquaman can AT LEAST get a fucking nomination. Come on.
It’s okay, though. Everyone knows Aquaman is the real winner.
Just think of how much time and effort was put into the hair mechanics for all the underwater scenes. Not even DISNEY could make that hair-under-water thing look as good the last time they tried it, and this film uses it WAY more.
Also oh my God, Atlantis is stunning. Absolutely beautiful. And all the other races of underwater people are so cool and diverse, and Julie Andrews as a racist and lonely kraken was really cool, and Black Manta looked so cool, and Mera and her powers were cool, and just EVERYTHING was so cool!!!
This movie deserves every cent it has earned. If every other DCEU movie from now on is even half as good as Aquaman, then I think we’re in safe hands for a long while.
Just keep Snyder away from everything beyond producing the damn films and we’re golden. I’m sure the studio only just got the smell of Axe: Chocolate and BO out of the carpet, and the mess they had to clear out when they found the mangled corpses of his childlike wonder and optimism in the closet…well, let’s just say we certainly don’t need that shit coming back.
No, thank you.
Who knew the DCEU’s highest grossing film would be Aquaman? Looks like Entourage got it right!
And there’s our list of movies! Sheesh, I didn’t know we had seen so many. We actually kept forgetting what we’d seen this year and had to keep adding things to the list!
Also this damn list took basically a week to complete…we had a lot to say.
So, with all these films catalogued, which films were actually the best and worst? Yes we categorized them all into neat little piles, but if we had to pick ONE best and ONE worst movie for 2018, what would they be?
Mad’s Best of the Year: Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse
Have I gushed over this movie enough?
I was kind of tempted to put Aquaman here because I really loved that movie too, but I honestly can’t express enough how much Into the Spider-Verse affected me.
It’s not often you come across a film that so utterly blows you away, that makes you feel like you’re right there with the characters, that makes you want to be right there.
One of the first movies to do that for me was Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring. When I was little, I used to be a huge geek about that movie and would put it on in the background while I played Hobbit alongside it, pretending I was there with Frodo and Sam and Merry and Pipin as the Nazgûl loomed over them just outside the Shire. I’d pull out my plastic sword and fight the air along with Aragorn and Boromir and the rest of the Fellowship in the Mines of Moria.
That movie swept me away to Middle Earth, and Into the Spider-Verse swept me away to Earth 1610 and took me on a legitimate adventure.
That’s something that I can’t ignore, even if it means I talk it up to death.
Pinkie’s Best of the Year: Venom
Venom, for me, was very subversive. I went in there expecting what everyone says it is: a 2000s Marvel film, but what we got was a really self-aware comedy between a guy and his pet symbiote…or I guess a symbiote and his pet human.
The first quarter of the movie basically has no action to speak of, but it all builds up to the body horror that is Eddie Brock’s cohabitation with Venom. Then it transitioned into a “traditional” superhero flick, with comedy and action blending together to culminate in an exciting and weird climax between two guys with serious alpha-male issues and two gooey symbiotes who are trying to eat each other.
It was a movie for losers, and I’m okay with that.
Mad’s Worst of the Year: Slender Man
What is there even left to say?
It failed at being a horror. It failed at being a failed horror.
It was nothing.
If Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse is the perfect film to me because of its ability to immerse me into the world it created, then Slender Man has to be one of the worst films I’ve seen (in theatres) because it was the complete antithesis of immersion.
I couldn’t not turn my brain off and just let the movie happen. I was so horrifically bored and confounded by what I was experiencing that even riffing on it and mocking it couldn’t keep me entertained.
This is not a film anyone should see. Not even if you want to play a stupid drinking game, or if you think it’s going to be so bad it’s good. It’s not. It’s just a soulless vacuum of a film that steals an hour and a half from your life.
Wait, it’s only an hour and a half long? Fucking Christ. It feels longer. Not as long as Transformers: The Last Knight does (which feels like about 8 hours), and certainly not as long as Frankenstein’s Army does (that shit defies the laws of time and space…), but it drags on for much longer than ninety minutes…
Just…don’t see this movie.
Pinkie’s Worst of the Year: Slender Man
At least in The Sisters Brothers we had John C. Reilly and Joaquin Phoenix to fall back on.
The opening of the film was actually kind of good, and held promise, with all these teen girls at a sleepover doing stupid stuff like watching porn just to go “Ew” at it. Like, that’s real. And whether because of studio interference or I don’t know what, all that charm and realness from the opening just disappeared. It was so obvious that things were cut, especially if you saw any of the trailers, and it left behind this pitiful skeleton of a film that was just begging to die.
Another thing that I liked – up until the end anyway – was how sparingly they used their title monster. The end, though, ruined it. It was horribly shot, the CG was bad…it was more laughable than anything else. By the time the last girl was being eaten by the tree, I just didn’t care.
It was a movie filled with odd decisions and nonsensical choices.
So that’s it for 2018! There are more films that were released this past year that I’d like to see, like A Quiet Place and Annihilation, but those will have to be for catch-up.
2019 looks like it’s going to be a good year for movies…or at least a good year for movie reviewers. There’s a lot coming up, and Pinkie and I are excited to see what will shock and awe and what will disappoint and enrage.
Pinkie already has the first 2019 movie I get to see all planned out. I don’t trust him for a fucking second. I know it’s going to hurt…sigh.
Until next time!