Each year, I want to celebrate films that changed my perspective of them. These 5 films aren’t necessarily the best movies of the year, but they surprised me in ways that I didn’t expect. These are movies that are either tied to a long tradition of terrible (either the franchise or the director) or just didn’t look good from the trailer but managed to defy all odds. Here are my 5 most surprising movies of 2017.
Michael Bay’s swan song gives big budget action movies a bad name
Through all the “awes” and “ohs” of the audience of my theater, I sat there desperately wanting to pull all my hair off and gouge my eyes out. I felt like the only one not in on this big joke that is called Transformers: The Last Knight. People kept laughing at Michael Bay’s terrible and awkward humor, gasping at the empty action scenes, and loving the very few scenes we got to see the actual Transformers. The point is that if you are a fan of these movies then you’ll apparently love this one but for anyone else, this is just a piece of scrap metal.
The DCEU badly needed a win and Patty Jenkins delivers big time
Female-led action movies are still having a hard time at the box office. Ghost In The Shell is the recent film to fall victim to such a pattern. These movies make significantly less than male-led action movies and are still considered a gamble to make. With the DCEU’s latest movie streak, they desperately need a movie both fans and critics can agree is good. Wonder Woman is not only the DCEU’s first good movie, it may also be this summer’s best superhero movie.
Everything you need for a fun summer movie experience
For every movie fanatic, summer is like an extra long birthday. This is the time studios release their most anticipated films. It can range from big summer blockbusters to highly anticipated indie movies. As the weather is getting warmer so are the movies. Every year we see more and more movies added to the summer lineup and this year is no different. Marvel and DC are both releasing their superhero movies while FOX is releasing its Alien prequel. Universal is releasing its highly anticipated Mummy movie and its indie darling, The Beguiled. As it is impossible to see all the movies, this guide will highlight everything from big budget to small budget movies that you need (or I strongly recommend not skipping) to see this summer.
Peter Berg feeds into America’s narcissism and heroism with his take on the Boston Marathon
If there was a sense of deja-vu when you saw the trailer for Patriots Day, it’s because that Peter Berg and Mark Wahlberg have already done a similar movie not long ago dealing with the Deepwater Horizon tragedy. Coming back with his second tragedy action movie, Peter Berg stuffs as many American symbols as he can and paints a glossy over the top picture of American heroism ultimately leading the movie to fall flat.
There’s was a lot of great horror movies this year
Whoever said that the horror genre is dying is just plain wrong. If they want evidence then show them this list. The horror genre is probably in a healthier state then back in the 1980s. We are getting high budget and original horror movies something that didn’t happen back in the 1980s. We got a lot of different kinds of horrors and not just supernatural ones. The horror genre is going through a resurrection and it is the genre to look forward to in 2017. But before looking at 2017, let’s take a look back at the best horror movies of 2016.
Sing’s characters carry the movie, but it doesn’t live up to its name
Illumination is becoming quite a force to be reckoned with. Just short of Pixar and Disney, it continues to grow each and every movie. Using the minions as a selling point is working and continues to. Illumination’s second movie of the year has a great cast and some great characters, but the ‘teeny bopper’ type song covers make the songs unmemorable.
The once successful Moon Theatre was the host of some amazing plays. However, now it’s becoming a quite a dump. The owner of the theater, Buster Moon (Matthew McConaughey), has failed to make a single successful gig.
One day, he comes up with the idea that could save his decaying theater, a singing competition. Johnny (Taron Egerton), Rosita (Reece Witherspoon), Ash (Scarlett Johansson), Mike (Seth McFarlene) and Meena (Tori Kelly) all give it a shot hoping to achieve their dream. Along the way, they find out that their dreams may require more sacrifices than they may be ready to deal with.
For a movie named Sing, it’s quite surprising that the singing is not the most exciting part. The characters are the real stars as they steal the show more than once. Each character is given a very human reason as to why they want to participate in the singing competition. The passionate and optimistic koala bear is beautifully voiced by a vibrant Matthew McConaughey. Taron Edgerton and Scarlett Johansson also give terrific performances as a gorilla trying to escape a difficult life and a wanna-be front singer porcupine. Each is given interesting stories, and those stories do carry the whole movie. To make your audience fall in love with every character is a hard thing to achieve and fortunately, Sing realizes just that.
Not so memorable are the songs which are lacking. Actually, the songs are pretty terrible. Playing off the same mediocracy of Trolls‘ songs, Sing transforms well-known songs to a Mini-Pop Kids’ special. Almost every song is glossed over with techno beats and autotune making “I’m Still Standing” by Elton John almost unbearable. Worst is that the whole singing competition gimmick (apart from the auditions which were funny) feels like fillers.
It is only when director Gareth Jennings (Son of Rambow) finds a way to weave in the characters’ stories into its central singing competition plot that the story starts to shine. It makes up for the fact that the singing is mediocre. In the end, it’s not about the singing competition but about a group of people (or animals) fighting against the various obstacles to attain their dreams.
From all that Sing has working against it, it does end up working, and there are moments of pure brilliance, but one should wish for more from a studio which is currently up there with Pixar and Disney. The characters all work in their own ways, and you feel for them through their ups and downs. If you can get past the fact that a movie called Sing doesn’t have any great songs, then just like me, you will enjoy this film.