For someone who writes a movie blog, I have been woefully poor at watching films this year, missing out on some critically acclaimed films such as Ad Astra, Le’ Mans 66 and Once Upon a Time in Hollywood. Even when I’ve turned to Netflix to get my movie fix, I’ve not watched the widely anticipated films like The Irishman, Marriage Story or The King but instead opted for easy going films like Murder Mystery and Falling Inn Love, or binge watching episodes of Glee for the first time.
All of which meant that when working on this post, and similarly on my worst films of 2019 post, I didn’t have a lot to choose from, and for me, arguing with Mark over which films should make it into the list is half of the fun. Don’t get me wrong though, I am very happy with the films I have chosen, I just wanted there to be more of a dog fight.
One final thing before we get to the list, this year I have decided to include Netflix films in my list as they have been growing in leaps and bounds over the last year or so, and are beginning to establish themselves as a cinematic force to be reckoned with. I’m sure Mr Spielberg will approve 🙂
Honorary Mention: Chernobyl
I know it’s not a film but the five-part miniseries from HBO was so good that it would be wrong not to at least give it a mention. Chernobyl tells the true story of one of the world’s worst man-made disasters; the explosion at a nuclear powerplant in northern Ukraine.
Released back in January, Glass was a great psychological thriller from M. Night Shyamalan starring Bruce Willis, Samuel L. Jackson, James McAvoy and Sarah Paulson. Although the final installment of the ‘Eastrail 177 Trilogy’ didn’t quite live up to the expectations of its predecessor Split, and it somewhat divided its viewers, personally I really enjoyed this film.
Whilst it is great to enjoy a beautifully crafted masterpiece that really gets you thinking but sometimes you just fancy a movie that is jam packed full of action, and the third chapter of the John Wick franchise definitely delivered on that with a spectacularly intense opening 15 minutes and a rather enjoyable journey thereafter. For pure enjoyment, Parabellum makes its way into my final list.
8. Green Book
I knew when I reviewed this film way back in February that this film would make it in to my top ten and I was right. As a big fan of biopics, this film was always going to play well with me but in the end it was the film’s subtle simplicity and powerful performances that earnt it its place in this list.
Full of Christmas spirit, I binge watched a load of Christmas movies earlier this month, and found this absolute gem of a film that is perfect for the whole family. With a great story and beautiful animation, Klaus will be a Christmas staple for many years to come.
6. Tell Me Who I Am
Another Netflix gem, Tell Me Who I Am is a documentary film that is intense and emotional but effective and powerful in its simplicity. I’ll admit it may be a little bold to put this in my top ten list, but it is one of those films that sparks conversation and debate, depicting a moral choice that is impossible to make.
With its varied filming style, interesting subject matter and incredible star-studded cast, I knew way back in January that Vice was going to last the distance and maintain its place in my favourite films of the year.
4. Toy Story 4
After the perfection that was Toy Story 3, I was incredibly disappointed when Pixar announced a fourth film. However what I thought was just a cash grabbing ploy actually turned out to be yet another heart-warming and beautifully animated story worthy of the Pixar name.
3. Wild Rose
I was lucky enough to see this film a couple of months before it’s official release date and it has stuck with me ever since. A simple British film with a kickass Country edge, I knew it was not going to get the attention it deserves so I’ve been singing its praises every chance I get. Honestly, you need to check it out.
The decision for my top three choices was a difficult one, I enjoyed them all so much, for different reasons, that they kept changing positions. In the end, what caused Joker to lose its position at the top spot was not a question of enjoyment or quality film-making but, rather, one of greed. As a standalone film, to me, it was perfect – proof that, when done well, a ‘grown-up’ comic book movie could be just as successful as the mainstream family friendly ones – however, the idea that they will be filming a sequel has slightly (only slightly) soured my appreciation for this film, but that was just enough to bump it down to second place.
Part biopic-part musical fantasy, Rocketman was a clear winner for me from the get-go. The incredible performances, including the amazing vocal talents of Taron Egerton, the spectacular costumes and the pure theatre of the whole film reeled me in from the very beginning and kept me their until the very end.
So there you have it, my favourite films of 2019. I am certain that many of you will not agree and have vastly different favourites of your own but that is why I love the movies, they speak to us all in different ways.
What was your favourite film of 2019? Let me know in the comments.
In the mood for reminiscing? Check out my favourite films of 2018 here.