Welcome back to another best movies of the year countdown! I know I’ve been away for a while, but I’ve still kept up on my movies. 2018 had several good films to offer. A Quiet Place, Spider-Man: Into the Spiderverse, Incredibles 2, BlackkKlansman, Annihilation, First Man, Green Book, Vice, Searching, and Blindspotting were all great, but these next 10 had a stronger impact on me.
10) Avengers: Infinity War – The first Marvel movie on my list is Avengers: Infinity War. It might be inferior to Black Panther as a film, but as a comic book movie, Infinity War reigns superior. Between its space opera aesthetics, haunting finale, and Josh Brolin’s charismatic performance as Thanos, Infinity War won’t soon be forgotten.
9) Mandy – The zany Nicolas Cage is back with a vengeance in this artsy grindhouse movie that’s Mad Max meets The Texas Chainsaw Massacre. Director Panos Cosmatos directs the film with a passion for metal music and horror films, bringing out one of Cage’s best performances in the process.
8) Sorry to Bother You – Sorry to Bother You is the wildest, funniest, most original, and unpredictable movie on my list. It’s a comedy about a millennial call center employee (Lakeith Stanfield) who discovers the key to success and how it literally costs him his humanity. Think if Spike Jonze and Spike Lee teamed up to make The Wolf of Wall Street.
7) Hereditary – Dreadful, upsetting, gory, and tragic are just a few words to describe 2018’s best horror film. First-time director Ari Aster surprises us with a twisted melodrama that starts slow and transitions into full nightmare mode by the final act. If Toni Collette doesn’t get an Oscar nomination, I’ll lose faith in the Academy.
6) Mission: Impossible – Fallout – I’m a lifelong Tom Cruise fan and the 56-year-old is still kicking ass. Fallout has Cruise jumping across buildings, flying an actual helicopter through mountains, and doing a live HALO jump. The plot might be similar to previous installments, but the action sequences and filmmaking take the series to new heights.
5) A Star is Born – A Star is Born proves that Bradley Cooper can sing and direct, and Lady Gaga can act. I’m a snob with romantic dramas, but the leading stars’ chemistry and versatility kept me engaged until its emotional closing performance.
4) Eighth Grade – Comedian Bo Burnham shows off serious writing and directorial talents with the coming-of-age movie Eighth Grade. This is an awkwardly funny and tenderly sweet movie about growing pains and anxiety, featuring one of the best child performances in years (Elsie Fisher).
3) The Favourite – The mad Yorgo Lanthimos (The Lobster, The Killing of a Sacred Deer) livens the tiresome period genre with his dark humor and visual panache. Olivia Colman, Rachel Weisz, and Emma Stone are all equally brilliant as three morally ambiguous women in a political game of wits. By the end, you’ll wonder if you were rooting for the right character.
2) Black Panther – Black Panther is this year’s best comic book movie. It’s politically relevant, fully realized, and gives us an unforgettable villain to root for (Michael B. Jordan as Killmonger). Wakanda forever!
1) Widows – When I think of everything I want in a film, Widows has it all. Skillful filmmaking, smart writing, complex characters, scary villains, and terrific performances. Viola Davis and Elizabeth Dibicki shine as widows of dead thieves who must steal two-million dollars to protect themselves from a pair of sinister criminals (Bryan Tyree Henry and a chilling Daniel Kaluuya). Widows is a mainstream genre film that comes with more on its mind than just heists and car chases.
That’s it for this year’s best list. Do you agree?