Okay, so we’re almost in October this year, and since it’s officially been achieved now, I can say it. This year, I made the decision to make a New Year’s resolution to rediscover my love for movies and especially for the movie-going experience as a whole. For those of you who know me, you know that I have absolutely loved movies and have wanted to make movies since I was a small child, but I’ll admit lately over the last few years between school, work, and basically starting my life over again, I had kind of not gotten around to seeing as many movies as I wanted to, or even going out and enjoying the theater experience and watching movies with other people as much as I wanted to. I believe last year I pretty much only went to the theater if it was a superhero movie, or Rogue One, and I only saw other movies I was interested in if I went to a friends house and they forced me to watch the movie. So, this year, I made the New Year’s resolution to not only see more movies that were coming out this year than I have in the past few years, but also to see more movies in the theater. I can say, that I have definitely done that this year. So now, I’m going to give you brief reviews for every movie I saw in the theater, for movies that came out this year that I didn’t see until they were available to rent at home, I will post a separate mass review at a later date.
The Lego Batman Movie 4/5
I’ll admit, my resolution didn’t start off so great as I didn’t actually make it to a theater until February, but this was the perfect movie to start off with, and I really, really enjoyed it. Though I did not like this movie as much as I ended up liking its predecessor, The Lego Movie, I enjoyed it a lot and think that Will Arnett is a perfect choice to play Batman in this form, and as much as it pains me to say this, they made a better Batman movie than the movie that came out last year with Batman in the title. Definitely would recommend it if you have not seen it yet.
This movie was near perfect. A great way to send both Hugh Jackman and Patrick Stewart off as both had confirmed this would be their last movie in the X-Men franchise. Not anything like you would expect from a comic book movie, and way more engrossing that either of the other two standalone Wolverine movies that have been released with less of the action, this movie proved that there were other ways to tell superhero stories. It is also made a ton of money and was a dark, gritty, bloody R-rated superhero movie which I think a lot of studios have been afraid to do for the last few years, so hopefully showing that these versions of superhero movies make money too will mean more superhero movies take chances to tell deeper, more human stories. I would recommend it even if you’re not into superhero movies.
Get Out 5/5
This is by far one of my favorite movies I’ve seen this year, and it will definitely end up somewhere on my top ten for the year. It was such a good thriller and did not go at all where I thought it was going. This is the movie that for most of the year if people had told me they hadn’t seen it I would do everything I could to convince them to check it out. There is so much goodness in this movie and I though I usually am not a fan of overhyping something, I cannot say enough good things about this movie. I definitely recommend everyone watch this.
Power Rangers 3/5
This one was 100% a nostalgia trip for me, I only went to see it because I used to love the show when I was a kid. It’s a fine movie, not great, but not terrible, but it is way longer than it needs to be and the kids spend the whole movie learning to do certain moves together and then they are magically able to do things at the end that they barely even knew was an option for most of the movie. It also felt way too much like the movie Chronicle at the beginning, and knowing that they originally wanted the writer of that film to write this movie as well, it made me feel a little like they ripped the guy off. Watch it if you too were a fan of the original series, but don’t go out of your way to see it, and don’t spend too much money on it either.
Beauty and the Beast 4/5
This was a really good film, and the voice actors were all great. My only real problems with the movie were that I hated how the beast looked, I don’t know what it was about him, but something about the way his face looked, it was just off-putting to me and took me out of the movie a few times. Also, whatever effect they put on his voice to make him sound the way he did was problematic and silly at times, especially in the more serious parts of the movie. Lastly, as good as the movie was, all it really made me want to do was go home and watch the original cartoon. I would recommend it, but I would also recommend watching the other one before or after because I think its still the superior version.
Going in Style 3.5/5
I went into this movie only knowing 3 things: Zach Braff directed it (and if you know how much I love Scrubs you know that was reason enough for me to go to the theater and see this movie), Michael Caine and Morgan Freeman were in it, and that it was a comedy. It was a decent movie, nothing amazing or groundbreaking, and apparently it’s actually a remake of an older film of the same name, but I did enjoy this movie overall and it was a nice little comedy that didn’t make you think too hard and that is sometimes a very needed aspect. I would definitely recommend this one, but go in with little to no knowledge about the plot and I think it’ll make it more fun.
The Fate of the Furious 4/5
If you have watched any of the last three Fast & Furious movies, you know exactly what you’re in for, ridiculous stunts and actions that make these people seem more like superheroes than Superman. That being said, it was still so much fun to watch, and Vin Diesel actually did some acting in this one, which was a nice change of pace. I definitely recommend if you’re into this franchise, but if you’re not, I don’t think this one will be the one to win you over.
Guardians of the Galaxy, vol. 2 4.5/5
The first Guardians of the Galaxy ended up becoming one of my favorite Marvel movies because the music was awesome and it made me care about characters I didn’t really know and told a good story that introduced them all. The second one is just as good, with a better villain and a lot more crazy and beautiful space scenes. The only real problem I had with the movie was that I didn’t love the music as much in this movie as much as I did in the first one, but the characters were all great still, the story was great and it made me care so much about a couple characters that I hated in the first movie, so it was a really good movie. I wholeheartedly recommend this movie, and if you have by some chance not seen the first, definitely check out that one too.
Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales 4/5
I’m a sucker for the Pirates of the Caribbean movies. This one is no different, definitely better than the last one, and it brought back some characters that were missing from that last movie so that was very nice too. I’d have to watch it again before I could say with certainty, but this might be my favorite since the original Pirates of the Caribbean movie. If you’re a fan of the franchise, this one will not disappoint and I say you should give it a try.
Wonder Woman 4/5
Finally, a DC Comics movie done right. After the horrendous Man of Steel, the overly long and mostly dull Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice, and the started off good, but fell off the rails in the last 45 minutes Suicide Squad, it’s nice to see one of the DC movies get done right. Gal Gadot is perfect as Wonder Woman and the movie holds up well to the character’s rich comic book background. As a person who personally prefers DC to Marvel but has no problem admitting Marvel has been doing way better with their movies and characters, it was nice to see this movie done right and hopefully it’s a step in the right direction for the future of DC movies. I highly recommend it to everyone, even if you had already given up after Batman v. Superman or Suicide Squad.
Baby Driver 5/5
This is the movie I was most looking forward to this year, and it did not disappoint. It was directed by the man who directed Shaun of the Dead, Hot Fuzz, and The World’s End. It’s technically his first “American” film, and I was very happy with it. There are so many good actors in here, and the story is very good. Not only would I recommend this movie to everyone, I’d probably watch it with you if you said you were going to check it out.
Spider-Man: Homecoming 4/5
This movie is the Spider-Man that people have been waiting for. Though I was a fan of the first two Tobey Maguire Spider-Man movies, the third one was awful and Tobey fit the nerd persona of Peter Parker well, but he never felt like a good fit for the Spider-Man persona. Then with the Andrew Garfield Spider-Man movies, they fell apart even faster with the first one being great, but the second one was trash, and Andrew was a great Spider-Man, but kind of a sucky Peter Parker. Here, Tom Holland is pitch perfect at both. His Peter is awkward and nerdy, and his Spider-Man is hilarious and cocky. They had just the right amount of Robert Downey, Jr. Not too much to make him steal the movie, but enough to let you know that Marvel was running the show this time around. Lastly, Michael Keaton was great villain. A few years ago I was wondering why he wasn’t getting enough work because I’ve always though Michael Keaton was a great actor (both before and after he played Batman) and it’s nice to see that he’s getting a lot more work these days and he’s getting to do plenty of different roles. There is a scene in this movie that is one of the most tense, and nerve-racking scenes I’ve ever seen in a movie and it comes at a part where none of the characters are in costume. I recommend this movie with all my heart as Spider-Man was always my second favorite hero behind Batman and this Spider-Man is great.
The Big Sick 5/5
This movie is the most indie movie on my list, and it was another one that I was very, very excited for. I have been a big fan of the main actor, Kumail Nanjiani, who also cowrote this movie with his wife and it was nice to see him get a leading role after seeing him pop up in secondary roles for years. This movie was hilarious, touching and just very lovely. It’s based on the true story of how Kumail and his wife Emily got together and though I’m sure there were some embellishments, there are some very real moments that you can only get when it’s something that happened to the two people who wrote the movie. I really love this movie and recommend it for everyone because it is hilarious, but also it will touch your heart.
The Dark Tower 4/5
So, first off, I have to admit, that I did not read the book until after I saw the movie, so it didn’t bother me how drastically different the two were. However, having now read the book, I could understand why people would be upset if they were expecting the movie to be more like the book, because though it takes the backstory and the characters from the book, that is pretty much where the similarities end. I really enjoyed the movie though and I’m a huge fan of Idris Elba so I was more than happy to see him be an old gunslinger taking down Matthew McConaughey, and the kid wasn’t bad either. So, if you haven’t read the book, or can accept that it’s going to be nothing at all like what you’ve read, then I say check it out and you might be surprised.
The Emoji Movie 3/5
I had zero interest going into this movie and thought it was going to be bad, but a friend invited me so I went along. I was surprised that while not great, it was funnier than I expected and even had one joke that I laughed out loud for an uncomfortable amount of time as I realized I was the only one laughing. It’s a fine movie, see it if you thought it looked good, if you didn’t have any interest in it though you’re probably safe not seeing it.
I am not a die hard fan of the original It movie and I have never read the book. Nevertheless, this movie looked like it could be scary and I knew lots of people were going to see it so I decided to check it out. It was a good movie, had some scary and creepy scenes, and the actors were all good, especially the kid who played Richie, he was hilarious. That being said though, I personally feel the movie is about 30 minutes too long and they don’t really explain anything. I feel like if you went into this movie and hadn’t either read the book or seen the original movie, you wouldn’t really know what was going on. They also don’t ever explain Its origin or Its purpose or how to kill it, or… well, let’s just say they don’t explain a lot. Luckily, there will be a part two which will hopefully give us more answers and expand upon the good parts of the movie. I recommend It for sure, but if you know little to nothing about the book or original movie, maybe read up on It a little before you watch the movie.
Kingsman: The Golden Circle 4/5
This movie I actually just saw two days ago. It was very good, and the action was great and all the actors fit their characters very well and it was nice to see something from the end of the last movie that seemed like a throw away joke turned into something of substance in this film. There were also some very funny parts and a very interesting cameo (though it was larger than a cameo really, so maybe a supporting role, I don’t want to surprise who it was because I had no idea he would be in the movie). The movie was long, but it never really seemed to drag like some movies do when they get past the two hour mark. That being said, now all I can think about is going back to the first one to figure out which one I like more while this second one is still fresh on my mind (which honestly I think is a good thing because if you want to go back and watch even more than what you already got then the writers, actors, director must be doing something right). Either way, it was very entertaining and over the top which when you’re expecting over the top like here, or in the Fast & Furious movies is great. I would recommend if you enjoyed the first one, and maybe even do a double feature because they are both really fun movies.
That’s everything I’ve seen in the theater so far this year. I will get around to reviewing movies that came out this year that I’ve seen at home, which is a much shorter list, I promise, but also there’s still plenty movies coming out this year that I want to check out including: Blade Runner 2049, The Foreigner, Jigsaw, Thor: Ragnarok, Justice League, and many more, so some time in December I’ll come back and review whatever else I end up going to see. Thanks for taking the time to read, and I hope you enjoyed it, also I tried my best not to spoil anything, so I hope if you haven’t seen any of these movies I may have persuaded you into watching them.