My Year at the Movies – 2017

Action Scenes of the Year (SPOILERS) (see below for One-on-One Fights)

10) The Losers’ Club vs. Pennywise, It

9) Shootout, Wind River

8) Foot chase, Baby Driver

7) Finale chase, Monster Trucks

6) Motorcycle surf chase, xXx: Return of Xander Cage

5) Mexican standoff, Logan

4) One-shot brawl, Atomic Blonde

3) Veld, Wonder Woman

2) Escalating finale, The Fate of the Furious

1) The throne room, Star Wars: The Last Jedi

Throne Room Fight Praetorian First Guard Rey Kylo Ren

Best Action Films of the Year

Baby Driver

Atomic Blonde

The Fate of the Furious

John Wick Chapter Two

Logan

 

Best Non-2017 Films Discovered in 2017

https://letterboxd.com/paulstanis/list/best-non-2017-films-discovered-in-2017/

 

My Favorite () Yet

Battle of the Sexes, my favorite Jonathan Dayton & Valerie Faris film yet

The Fate of the Furious, my favorite Fast and Furious film yet

Gifted, my favorite Marc Webb film yet (though I haven’t seen (500) Days of Summer)

Logan, my favorite Wolverine film yet

My Cousin Rachel, my favorite Roger Michell film yet

Power Rangers, my favorite Power Rangers film yet

Star Wars: The Last Jedi, my favorite Rian Johnson and (maybe) Star Wars film yet

Thor: Ragnarok, my favorite Thor and Taika Waititi film yet

Three Billboards Outside Ebbing Missouri, my favorite Martin McDonagh film yet

Wonder Woman, my favorite DCU film yet

xXx: Return of Xander Cage, my favorite xXx film yet (but, sue me, I like State of the Union)

 

Best Heroes or Antiheroes of the Year

11) Moonie (Brooklynn Prince), The Florida Project

10) Meredith (Jane Levy), Monster Trucks

9) Molly Bloom (Jessica Chastain), Molly’s Game

8) Hercule Poirot (Kenneth Branagh), Murder on the Orient Express

7) Thor (Chris Hemsworth), Thor: Ragnarok

6) Chris Washington (Daniel Kaluuya), Get Out

5) Diana (Gal Gadot), Wonder Woman

4) Mildred Hayes (Frances McDormand), Three Billboards Outside Ebbing Missouri

3) Valkyrie (Tessa Thompson), Thor: Ragnarok

2) Rose Tico (Kelly Marie Tran), Star Wars: The Last Jedi

Rose Tico

1) Ruth Kimke (Melanie Lynskey), I Don’t Feel at Home in this World Anymore

Ruth Kimke

 

Worst Heroes or Antiheroes of the Year

Valerian and Laureline (Dane DeHaan and Cara Delavigne), Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets

Lightning McQueen (Owen Wilson), Cars 3

 

Best Horror Films of the Year

Get Out

The Girl with All the Gifts

It

mother!

Raw

 

Moments of the Year

20) ATM, Baby Driver

19) “Of course not”, Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2

18) Churchill’s speech, Dunkirk

17) Olive the Wonder Woman, Professor Marston and the Wonder Women

16) Projector scare, It

15) Riff-off, Pitch Perfect 3

14) “Luck don’t live out here”, Wind River

13) The reversal, Good Time

12) Laura unleashed, Logan

11) The cop car, Get Out

10) Good Morning Missouri broadcast, Three Billboards Outside Ebbing Missouri

9) A hypothetical question, The Post

8) The ending, Your Name.

7) Second “Immigrant Song” needle drop, Thor: Ragnarok

6) TIE: “Choose” and “No More Catholics”, T2 Trainspotting

5) “I wish I could put my fist through this whole lousy, beautiful town”, Star Wars: The Last Jedi

4) Diplomacy montage, Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets

3) Shaw family reunion, The Fate of the Furious

2) This one, Kong: Skull Island

Explosion Reflected in Shades Kong Skull Island

1) No man’s land, Wonder Woman

wonder-woman

One-on-One Fights of the Year (SPOILERS)

13) Roland Deschlain vs. Walter, The Dark Tower

12) Eggsy Unwin vs. Charlie Hesketh, Kingsman: The Golden Circle

11) Logan vs. X-24, Logan

10) Letty vs. Russian, The Fate of the Furious

9) Walter vs. David, Alien: Covenant

8) Finn vs. Phasma, Star Wars: The Last Jedi

7) Vincent Downs vs. McFerrin, Sleepless

6) Thor vs. The Hulk, Thor: Ragnarok

5) Nick Morton vs. Edward Hyde, The Mummy

4) Mark Renton vs. Simon Williamson, T2 Trainspotting

3) Ashley Miller vs. Veronica Salt (Round 1), Catfight

2) Gamora vs. Nebula, Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2

1) John Wick vs. Cassian, John Wick Chapter 2

 

Best Pop Culture References/Allusions of the Year

10) The Lord of the Rings, Unforgettable

9) Hercules, The Fate of the Furious

8) Monk, The Assignment

7) Star Wars, Spider-Man: Homecoming

6) Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory, Thor: Ragnarok

5) On Her Majesty’s Secret Service, T2 Trainspotting

4) Wings of Desire, The Space Between Us

3) Seconds, Get Out

2) A Song of Ice and Fire, Logan Lucky

1) Jerry Maguire, The LEGO Batman Movie

 

Ranking Disney-Distributed Movies (Worst to Best)

7) Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales

6) Cars 3

5) Coco

4) Beauty and the Beast

3) Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2

2) Thor: Ragnarok

1) Star Wars: The Last Jedi

 

Best School Films of the Year

Lady Bird

It

Monster Trucks

Power Rangers

Spider-Man: Homecoming

 

Best Science Fiction Films of the Year

Star Wars: The Last Jedi

Blade Runner 2049

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2

The Space Between Us

War for the Planet of the Apes

 

Sequel Improvement

Cars 3 > Cars 2

The Fate of the Furious > Furious 7

John Wick Chapter 2 > John Wick

Logan > The Wolverine

Star Wars: The Last Jedi > Star Wars: The Force Awakens

Thor: Ragnarok > Thor: The Dark World

xXx: Return of Xander Cage > xXx: State of the Union

 

Sequel Decline

Kingsman: The Golden Circle < Kingsman: The Secret Service

Pitch Perfect 3 < Pitch Perfect 2

Transformers: The Last Knight < Transformers: Age of Extinction

 

Best Sequel (#2 – Second Installment) of the Year

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2

Blade Runner 2049

John Wick Chapter Two

T2 Trainspotting

 

Best Sequel (#3 – Third Installment) of the Year

Thor: Ragnarok

Logan

War for the Planet of the Apes

xXx: Return of Xander Cage

 

Best Spinoffs of the Year

Wonder Woman

Kong: Skull Island

The LEGO Batman Movie

Spider-Man: Homecoming

Split

 

Stray Observations

After Godzilla cameos in Moana, King Kong cameos in The LEGO Batman Movie.

After Idris Elba sang the end credits song of Bastille Day, Samuel L. Jackson does the same in The Hitman’s Bodyguard.

After Tilda Swinton played twins in Hail, Caesar!, she does it again in Okja.

The general overuse of “Spirit in the Sky” continues with Life’s end credits, and I Tonya.

In Monty Python and the Holy Grail, a peasant recognizes that Arthur is king because he’s “the only one who hasn’t got shit all over him”. King Arthur: Legend of the Sword has a scene that covers Arthur in shit.

The Belko Experiment and The Circle share one similar plot point, and have the exact same final shot.

Peter Ferdinando plays the main villain’s henchman in both King Arthur: Legend of the Sword and Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales.

I’ve seen four versions of The Mummy and this one is the weakest.

The LEGO Ninjago Movie is the second-best Power Rangers movie of the year.

In Battle of the Sexes, Emma Stone appears under a huge sign spelling Aloha, aka the movie where she infamously played the one-quarter Hawaiian Allison Ng.

Best nonverbal acting of the year: Star Wars: The Last Jedi’s Carrie Fisher in the scene where Leia and Kylo Ren feel each other’s presence through the Force.

There are five 2017 movies with the word “Wonder” in the title: Wonder Woman, Professor Marston and the Wonder Women, Wonderstruck, Wonder Wheel, and Wonder. Not to mention Logan, Logan Lucky, and Lucky. Plus, Your Name. and Call Me by Your Name.

I could have pretty much filled a legitimate, endorsed-by-me Best Actress category exclusively with people whose last name starts with H: Rebecca Hall in Professor Marston and the Wonder Women, Anne Hathaway in Colossal, Sally Hawkins in The Shape of Water, Anne Heche in Catfight.

 

Tearjerkers of the Year

Dunkirk; Professor Marston and the Wonder Women; Wonder Woman; Murder on the Orient Express; Coco; Star Wars: The Last Jedi; Your Name.; The Post

 

Most Underrated Films of the Year

Star Wars: The Last Jedi; The Space Between Us; Sleepless

And Monster Trucks wins my “Pardon One Turkey” award. It’s really good!

 

Best Villains of the Year

10) Richard Strickland (Michael Shannon), The Shape of Water

9) The Grandmaster (Jeff Goldblum), Thor: Ragnarok

8) Kevin Wendell Crumb/The Horde (James McAvoy), Split

7) Missy Armitage (Catherine Keener), Get Out

6) Hela (Cate Blanchett), Thor: Ragnarok

5) Ego (Kurt Russell), Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2

4) The Joker (Zach Galifianakis), The LEGO Batman Movie

3) Adrian Toomes (Michael Keaton), Spider-Man: Homecoming

2) Francis Begbie (Robert Carlyle), T2 Trainspotting

1) Kylo Ren (Adam Driver), Star Wars: The Last Jedi

Kylo Ren Samurai

Worst Villain of the Year

Steppenwolf

Born to be a mild threat.

WTF (Bad)

Jake Gyllenhaal’s performance, Okja

Chicago song at the big dramatic climax, Death Note

Ominous ending, Unforgettable

Mid-credits scene, Wish Upon

Jason Isaacs as Phantom of the Opera meets Frankenstein’s monster, A Cure for Wellness

The notion that people care about the byzantine politics, Underworld: Blood Wars

All of Transformers: The Last Knight

Jump scares, Resident Evil: The Final Chapter

 

WTF (Good)

Rambling Anthony Hopkins villain, Collide

Excalibur, The Dark Tower

Fauna, Kong: Skull Island

The world revolves around an adult’s cards game, Girlfriend’s Day

TIE: The breakup scene and The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift crossover, Wish Upon

Nicolas Cage as Unhinged Main Villain #32, Arsenal

Cockney Crowe, The Mummy

The concept of Colossal

Adventureland, Good Time

Uncensored Jeff Goldblum, Thor: Ragnarok

Mid-Credits scene, Split

All of The Fate of the Furious

 

Best War Films of the Year

Dunkirk

Mudbound

Star Wars: The Last Jedi

Their Finest

Wonder Woman

 

(ROUGH) Final Ranking of All (111) 2017 Films Seen (Best to Worst)

Get Out; Star Wars: The Last Jedi; The Fate of the Furious; Colossal; The Post; Thor: Ragnarok; Three Billboards Outside Ebbing Missouri; Baby Driver; Your Name.; Wonder Woman; John Wick Chapter 2; Molly’s Game; Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2; I Don’t Feel at Home in this World Anymore; Beauty and the Beast; Battle of the Sexes; T2 Trainspotting; The Disaster Artist; Atomic Blonde; Coco; The Shape of Water; Logan; Murder on the Orient Express; Dunkirk; All the Money in the World; The LEGO Batman Movie; Blade Runner 2049; Darkest Hour; The Big Sick; mother!; Wind River; Loving Vincent; Spider-Man: Homecoming; Lady Bird; Kong: Skull Island; Monster Trucks; The Space Between Us; xXx: Return of Xander Cage; Catfight; Good Time; Phantom Thread; I Tonya; Call Me by Your Name; The Girl with All the Gifts; War for the Planet of the Apes; Free Fire; The Lost City of Z; Professor Marston and the Wonder Women; Raw; Power Rangers; Sleepless; The Hitman’s Bodyguard; Mudbound; It; Logan Lucky; Gifted; Pitch Perfect 3; Ingrid Goes West; American Made; Kingsman: The Golden Circle; Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets; The Breadwinner; Alien: Covenant; Their Finest; Girlfriend’s Day; The Great Wall; War on Everyone; The Florida Project; Personal Shopper; The Assignment; Split; Okja; A Ghost Story; The Greatest Showman; My Cousin Rachel; Aftermath; Cars 3; Gold; The Beguiled; Ghost in the Shell; Gerald’s Game; The Belko Experiment; The Discovery; The Zookeeper’s Wife; The Dark Tower; Justice League; Victoria & Abdul; Captain Underpants: The First Epic Movie; The LEGO Ninjago Movie; Sleight; Table 19; Geostorm; Death Note; The Circle; Wonder Wheel; Wilson; Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales; Life; A Cure for Wellness; The Mummy; Wish Upon; The Foreigner; The Wall; Before I Fall; King Arthur: Legend of the Sword; The Book of Henry; Collide; Arsenal; Transformers: The Last Knight; Unforgettable; Underworld: Blood Wars; Resident Evil: The Final Chapter

 

By the Numbers

7 Monsters with grotesque rows of teeth (Monster Trucks, The Great Wall, Kong: Skull Island, Colossal, Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, Alien: Covenant, It)

5 Final bosses with skull helmets (King Arthur: Legend of the Sword, Wonder Woman, The LEGO Ninjago Movie, Thor: Ragnarok, Justice League)

4 Jungle treks (Kong: Skull Island, The Lost City of Z, Gold, Kingsman: The Golden Circle)

4 Films featuring sign language (John Wick Chapter Two, Baby Driver, War for the Planet of the Apes, The Shape of Water)

4 Women in a creepy isolated house (mother!, Gerald’s Game, Personal Shopper, A Ghost Story)

4 Wonder Woman appearances (The LEGO Batman Movie, Wonder Woman, Professor Marston and the Wonder Women, Justice League)

3 Awful fifth installments (Underworld: Blood Wars, Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales, Transformers: The Last Knight)

3 Films dealing with the Dunkirk Evacuation (Their Finest, Dunkirk, Darkest Hour)

3 Uses of John Denver’s “Annie’s Song” (Free Fire, Okja, Kingsman: The Golden Circle)

3 Uses of John Denver’s “Take Me Home Country Roads” (Alien: Covenant, Logan Lucky, Kingsman: The Golden Circle) (The latter two films both feature Channing Tatum.)

3 Appearances of King Arthur’s sword Excalibur (King Arthur: Legend of the Sword, Transformers: The Last Knight, The Dark Tower)

3 “Major Tom” songs/references (Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets, Atomic Blonde, Geostorm)

3 Films revolving around a one-on-one fight/confrontation (Catfight, Unforgettable, Battle of the Sexes)

3 Samuel L. Jackson appearances where another role of his is referenced (xXx: Return of Xander Cage, Kong: Skull Island, The Hitman’s Bodyguard)

3 Series’ main protagonists turn evil (The Fate of the Furious, Transformers: The Last Knight, Justice League) (With the exception of Justice League, the other films feature at least one scene in Cuba.)

3 Stephen King adaptations (The Dark Tower, It, Gerald’s Game)

3 Villains whose name is scoffed/laughed at (Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, Captain Underpants: The First Epic Movie, The Dark Tower)

2 Ape films heavily referencing Apocalypse Now (Kong: Skull Island, War for the Planet of the Apes)

2 February horror films in which a car hits a deer (Get Out, A Cure for Wellness)

2 Characters who make a big deal about aiming a weapon with his heart (Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, The Dark Tower)

2 Coney Island appearances (Spider-Man: Homecoming, Wonder Wheel)

2 Eighth installments (The Fate of the Furious, Star Wars: The Last Jedi)

2 Uses of Elton John’s “Rocket Man” (Kingsman: The Golden Circle, Battle of the Sexes)

2 Uses of Fleetwood Mac’s “The Chain” (Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, I Tonya)

2 Genius-level gifted kids (Gifted, The Book of Henry)

2 Giant animals in South Korea (Colossal, Okja)

2 Good remakes (Beauty and the Beast, Sleepless)

2 High school films with the female lead being run over by a car at the end (Wish Upon, Before I Fall)

2 Hopeful futures for the International Space Station (Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets, Geostorm)

2 of Jaeden Lieberher’s friends being abused by her single-parent father (The Book of Henry, It)

2 King Kong sightings (The LEGO Batman Movie, Kong: Skull Island)

2 Instances of life on Mars (Life, The Space Between Us)

2 Films where people ask someone what their mother was like and the answer is “fearless” (Beauty and the Beast, The Space Between Us)

2 Tom Cruise plane crashes (The Mummy, American Made)

2 Villainous absentee fathers who play catch with their son (Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, The LEGO Ninjago Movie)

Curtain Call Cast Credits (xXx: Return of Xander Cage, The LEGO Batman Movie, The Great Wall, Beauty and the Beast, Sleepless, Captain Underpants: The First Epic Movie, Spider-Man: Homecoming, The Assignment, Collide, Death Note*, The LEGO Ninjago Movie, Loving Vincent, Thor: Ragnarok)

Epilogue Text (The Zookeeper’s Wife, The Lost City of Z, The Assignment, The Big Sick*, Wind River, American Made, Battle of the Sexes, Victoria & Abdul, Professor Marston and the Wonder Women, Loving Vincent, The Disaster Artist, Darkest Hour, All the Money in the World, The Greatest Showman, I Tonya)

Mid-Credits Scenes (Split, Power Rangers, Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, Captain Underpants: The First Epic Movie, Transformers: The Last Knight, Spider-Man: Homecoming, Wish Upon, Good Time*, The LEGO Ninjago Movie, Thor: Ragnarok, Justice League, Pitch Perfect 3*, Call Me by Your Name*, Phantom Thread*)

Post-Credits Scenes (Kong: Skull Island, Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales, Cars 3, Spider-Man: Homecoming, Okja, Thor: Ragnarok, Justice League, The Disaster Artist)

Rose Tico Valkyrie Ruth Kimke

The three heroes of the year.

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