As someone who saw more than 100 new releases in 2017, I look back incredibly fondly on the last 12 months at the cinema. While my tastes tend to be a bit all over the place, and there certainly were more than a handful of disappointments, I was elated to find the year stocked with brilliant entries from some of my favorite auteurs, breakthroughs from some seriously talented filmmakers, and even an impressive stock of impressive and creative comic book blockbusters. In the past few weeks I've been excited to reflect on the number of wonderful treats the big screen had to offer in 2017, though ultimately faced with some seriously hard choices determining my personal Top 10.
Having spent 2017 constantly on the hunt for the best material that the medium had to offer, I'm now proud to reveal what I felt were the best movies released this year. My criteria are rather simple, weighing both quality and rewatchability into my final decisions, and both factored into every choice I've made. So let's get this show on the road!
For the bulk of the time leading up to the release date, I dreaded the arrival of Andres Muschietti's IT. Reports about studio interference behind the scenes driving away writer/director Cary Fukunaga had me seriously concerned, and recognizing the immense potential in a big screen adaptation of Stephen King's epic, I was prepared to be disappointed. The reason why the film is on my Top 10, however, is because I left the theater the exact opposite of disappointed. As soon as the credits rolled I realized I had witnessed the birth of a new modern horror classic, and I couldn't shake it from my brain for weeks.
It's amazing just how many smart decisions are made with the property, both big and small. Updating the story to be set in the 1980s was a perfect call, with the narrative having the chance to hit all the appropriate Amblin nostalgia buttons; but then there's just the stunning design of Pennywise, turning Bill Skarsgard into a truly terrifying vision. It's going to be a sincere challenge for the forthcoming sequel to live up to what was accomplished here, but unlike this film, I anticipate it with the highest hopes, rather than the lowest.
Read my full review here.