What are my top ten movies of 2019? What? You don’t care? Typically, I like to do these lists to see how good the year was for movies, and 2019 wasn’t bad. Typically, I like to wait till January to make these lists because I usually don’t see the majority of new releases till the first quarter of January, but I did pretty solid this year. I may have missed a few here and there, but I saw most of the big ones. Here is my “10 Best Movies of 2019”.
10 Best Movies of 2019
10. Alita: Battle Angel -The best summation of the films influence I can think of is “Rollerball” meets “Death Race” meets “Borderlands.” It niche is with a teenage or adult audience that digs science fiction. Mostly, it was just a lot of fun. Hell, it even had my absolute most hated movie cliche: KISSING IN THE RAIN and I forgave it. I’m hoping for a sequel and Cameron and Rodriguez have suggested that the film could lead to multiple sequels. but I don’t think it did exceptionally well at the box office so we will see. However, there is a MUCH better chance if Cameron stays mostly behind the scenes. Hopefully he let’s Rodriguez do his thing again.
9. Ready Or Not – “Ready or Not” is a fun ride. An absurd ride, but a lot of fun. The macabre theme and almost “Clue” style of the game controlling mood keeps the story light-heated. Make no mistake, this is a dark comedy and the violence is pretty graphic. Our protagonist goes through hell (not unlike some marriages) and it shows. But if you’re up for some off-kilter darker fun with some “tee hee” in your sensibilities I definitely say watch this. And if you’re engaged or thinking of getting married….watch this for sure.
8. Dolemite Is My Name – I had such high expectations for this and it exceeded them. What an absolute treat. Every moment of this movie is enjoyable and the performances are worth the price of admission (even though it’s Netflix). It was such a pleasure to see Eddie Murphy doing what he does best here too. Fantastic movie.
7. It: Chapter Two – For a nearly 3 hour run time and part two of a movie series, there is the thought that this would have benefited from a mini series, but even with the lengthy part two the suspense and time moved along naturally. Delightfully there was still a lot of flashing back, but also some pretty intense current scary. The adult casting was wonderful, particularly Jessica Chastain and Bill Hader. Absolutely wonderful.
6. Marriage Story – This got really, real. Almost brutal. It’s hard to recommend for any other purpose than there is some comfort to see the deterioration of a relationship in a way that wasn’t exploiting it for entertainment purposes. It’s pure honesty. It wasn’t nearly as harsh as “Blue Valentine”, but it was just perfectly crafted and acted. Laura Dern is just incredible.
5. Toy Story 4 – I have zero complaints. The one character I haven’t liked in the series (Jessie) was minimized in this addition. In spite of reviews this was NOT even close to the darkest of the series. 3 and 1 were far darker, even with a few “scary” moments. The human character’s were inclusive and the hero of the story wore a skirt…..sort of…..Some of the new characters were just delightful and even the ones I didn’t like as much were still fun. The story brought us to an ultimate ending and inevitability for ALL toys at some point. Aside from the sentimental business is was also FUN and exciting. An adventure. One last time.
4. John Wick 3 – The third installment of the John Wick saga did not disappoint. The first 30 minutes of this film are absolutely perfect. Some of the best straight action sequences I’ve ever seen and the rest of the movie remains effortlessly entertaining. We learn a little more about this world of assassins and of course wicked crazy fighting, gun plays, sword play, motorcycle play, horse play…….you name it.
3. Avengers: Endgame – Almost 30 movies later and it seemed impossible to tie up all of the loose ends and conclude this monstrosity of a story. It begins dismally and our heroes that have “made it” are struggling with the state of their world, but not all have given up, and you end up with one of the most fun movies I’ve ever seen in the theatre. Perfection.
2. Ad Astra – You feel the weight that Roy McBride has carried with him his entire life and you see what drives him. If nothing else Ad Astra does an exceptional job of transferring those emotions and experiences through the screen, but it also leaves enough there for us to personalize the experience. It’s a quiet film, and in its silence, it cleverly delivers several important messages about the nature of man, evolution, and the magic in life if we are willing to be brave enough to see it.
1. Once Upon A Time In Hollywood – I feel like Tarantino makes movies just with me in mind and that also makes me understand they aren’t for everyone. Many were inspired to drop their lists of his “9” films and in order. It might not be my number one, but it’s still one of the best movies I’ve seen in a long time and I have only minor criticism’s. There’s something nostalgic and yet fresh about “Once Upon A Time in Hollywood”. You may find yourself wanting to speed to the end, but you also don’t want it to stop. You know everything has some level of impact on that final destination, but the best part was taking the ride there. When you watch this movie, you need to stop and just be in the moment and enjoy every second of what it’s delivering. Tarantino did his thing. On his terms. I can’t wait to see it again.
Hellboy, MIB-International, Extremely vile and evil and shit
Still Haven’t Seen:
Joker, Crawl, The Lighthouse, The Report, Parasite