Below are Big B’s top films of 2016.
It’s a heartwarming adventure-comedy about two outcasts from different worlds, and I love it. Clever, concise, and nuanced. Watch this movie.
Nicolas Winding Refn’s odd drama is a hypnotic cocktail of aesthetic symbolism: one part unnerving imagery, and two parts kaleidoscopic Tyra Banks. It’s The Devil Wears Prada meets Enter the Void.
Given the current climate of rhetoric and misinformation, any film that attempts to dissect and explain scientific data should be thoughtfully considered. Before the Flood discusses the most pressing global issue of this age: climate change. It is an intelligent, skillfully edited summary of the climate-based problems facing the world today.
Arrival is an exciting first-contact movie about the importance of words and communication. For decades, dystopian stories like 1984 and Fahrenheit 451 have begged readers to value language and word choice, and the idea that effective communication matters seems particularly relevant in light of recent events.
I enjoy animated movies. 1986’s An American Tail made me smile. 1992’s Ferngully made me think. 2012’s Wreck-It Ralph made me cry happy tears. 2014’s Big Hero 6 made me laugh out loud. But Moana accomplished all of those things, and it did so with beautiful visuals, impressive voice acting, and moving music. Moana raised the bar for inspirational animated movies.
Tickled is a documentary about an underground tickle-fetish video network that, as of the film’s release, still exists. Watching this film is like falling down a rabbit hole and never quite emerging. It’s quirky and angering, entertaining and horrifying, absurd and absolutely true.
7) Rogue One: A Star Wars Story
The Modern (Disney) Age of Star Wars began successfully with The Force Awakens, but Rogue One shows fans what this iteration of the franchise can achieve. It offers an entertaining and multifaceted side story that both nods to existing narratives within the larger Star Wars franchise and sheds light on an intriguing and arguably more nuanced niche of that universe. In production, Rogue One was less shackled by fan expectations than The Force Awakens, and that relative freedom resulted in a more multilayered film.
Kubo and the Two Strings effectively tells a difficult and sobering story to a target demographic that struggles to digest the nuances of difficult and sobering stories—and it does so with wit and beautiful imagery.
XOXO contains a simple narrative, but that seems to be the moral of the film: Enjoy the simple pleasures of life. Enjoy the party. Do not overthink this film. Just enjoy the colors and the sounds.
10) Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice
Yes, Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice. Read my defense of this movie here.
What are your favorite movies of 2016?
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