Hello, and happy List Week!
We’re going to keep things moving here by shifting from music to motion pictures.
2017 was a fun year for movies. We had a surprising hit about modern race relations, a few book adaptations, some decent sequels here and there, and even a DC movie that didn’t completely suck ass.
I usually only watch new movies about 3-4 times a year, so this year’s number of 14 is a pretty big anomaly.
With that in mind, I decided to rank them all while giving (hopefully) brief descriptions.
Let’s get to it:
*SUPER DUPER SPOILER AF WARNING*
….*FOR ALMOST EVERY MOVIE ON THIS LIST*
14.) Transformers: The Last Knight
I tried to give it a chance. I really did.
I even tried to watch it a second time after falling asleep during my first attempt.
But holy shit, is this movie terrible.
It’s almost as if Michael Bay has taken all the criticism from previous films, amplified them, and compiled them all into The Last Knight.
The plot makes no sense, the editing is more erratic than ever, and basic film elements are executed so terribly that I wouldn’t be surprised if Michael Bay is just trolling everyone at this point.
And at 2 and a half hours, it’s not even like this is a terrible-yet-fun movie to watch with your friends. It’s just terrible.
Not only the worst movie I saw in 2017, but one of the worst movies I’ve seen ever.
13.) Power Rangers
This movie wasn’t as bad as I thought it was going to be.
…but it was still pretty bad.
The characters weren’t likeable, and the plot relied way too heavily on odd conveniences (why were they all randomly at the construction site) to build any sort of rhythm.
The special effects were boring and overdone, and the product placement was hilariously blatant.
Looking back, I don’t remember anything about this movie that I liked.
Fuck this movie.
12.) The Fate of the Furious
You see, this is a bad movie done right.
The plot is dumb, the drama falls flat, and the humor is just as inappropriately timed as ever, but boy is it fun.
I appreciate how this film doesn’t attempt to be anything more than it is. It’s a testosterone-fueled revenge/betrayal/whatever spectacle with fast cars and fist fights.
If you came into this movie expecting more than this, then shame on you.
But I’d hope that anyone seeing the EIGHTH installment of this series would know what to expect at this point.
11.) Baby Driver
Here’s one way to describe this movie: style over substance.
It’s almost as if the essence of Los Angeles was compressed into 113 minutes.
Anyway, Baby Driver was pretty decent. The driving scenes were absolutely incredible, as they were all done with practical effects and excellent stunt work. You can’t knock the film for any of that.
However, you can point out how the film seemed to think it was a lot cooler than it actually was at times.
The soundtrack wasn’t that great. Or at least, wasn’t good enough to have it constantly breathing down your neck during scenes that are already overstimulating as it is.
The characters were all stupid→ literally. They said stupid things, made stupid decisions, and had idiotic motivations most times.
Which is normally fine in a movie like this, but the villains were also apparently fucking omnipotent since they always knew where Baby was and thus had way more screen time than they warranted.
So yeah, I don’t know what all the fuss was. It was entertaining enough to pass the time on a plane ride.
Outside of that, I don’t know why I’d ever watch this movie again.
10.) Spider Man: Homecoming
I mean….it served its purpose.
Homecoming did a great job matching the same tone and energy level that we’d all expect from a faithful adaptation.
And in that regard, it was pretty good—> definitely a step up from the robotic melodrama from the Amazing series.
It felt like a really funny high school movie that just happened to feature. And a lot of people loved it for that.
However, Homecoming was a bit straightforward and safe for my taste. I recognize that Marvel just needs to get Spidey into the next Avengers movie with more of a backstory, and so there’s little time to take a risk.
But I still think Spider-Man 2 is the best adaptation, and by a large margin.
That said, Homecoming was really solid.
9.) Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2
I think it’s interesting how it’s Vol. 2, even though it’s a lesser version of the first film.
Now don’t get me wrong, Guardians 2 is a pretty good movie. I’d easily place it over some of the other Marvel sequels, like Iron Man 2, Thor: The Dark World, and even The Avengers 2.
But I think it was a little self-indulgent at times. It was difficult to connect with any supposedly emotional scene in this movie, since they would almost always be undercut with some quippy joke.
Except for Yondu’s arc, which was really touching.
In general, it brought the same great soundtrack, humor, and quirkiness as the first film. And while it did little to step outside of its predecessor’s frame, it was still a fun ride.
Also–> this awesome end credits song:
8.) Captain Underpants: The First Epic Movie
A surprisingly enjoyable film.
While the voices of George and Harold (Kevin Hart and Thomas Middleditch) are a little jarring at times, their passionate performances easily make up for it.
The humor is spot-on at every corner, and the plot is a very faithful adaptation to the graphic novels.
There’s a lot of heart in this film, which assures us that the filmmakers actually love the book series, and aren’t looking for a quick payday.
Captain Underpants actually reminded me a lot of the Diary of a Wimpy Kid film series, which are also great adaptations that might be funnier than the original source material.
And that’s some great company to be in.
I had my apprehensions going into this film, but was left with eager anticipation of what’s to come from this series.
7.) War for the Planet of the Apes
The first 40 minutes of this film: absolutely astonishing.
I was in the theater already thinking that this was somehow the best war film that I’ve ever seen.
However, the momentum does hit a wall towards the end of the second act.
I didn’t care much for Woody Harrelson’s character, or the fact that he was cast at all. I think he was just too much of a one-dimensional villain for such a morally complex series, and was a rather disappointing follow-up to Koba in Dawn.
That said, the film does a good job of pulling itself together towards the end.
Not the emotionally climactic end that I originally wished for, but still a satisfying conclusion to what has quietly become the best film trilogy I’ve ever seen.
Also: Andy motherfucking Serkis.
6.) Wonder Woman
The best DC movie I’ve seen since The Dark Knight
But it’s not like there was that much competition.
It was nice to see that Wonder Woman wasn’t only popular because it checked the “Feminist” box, but rather because it was an actual good movie.
That trench scene was one of the coolest superhero movie scenes I’ve watched in a long time→ and I was watching it while my plane was going through bad turbulence and I lowkey thought I was going to die.
Anyway, the reason why Gal Gadot’s Wonder Woman worked so well as a hero was because she was portrayed as just that: a hero.
Diving headfirst into battle, unrelenting in her moral code, and laser focused, she was more than enough to carry this film.
Good thing, too, because seeing Professor Lupin reveal himself as Aries only to keep looking like Professor Lupin was fucking stupid.
5.) Thor: Ragnarok
A third installment that’s so good, you’ll forget that the first two even existed.
…And that’s not just because the first two were actually very forgettable.
Ragnarok turned up the humor and the wackiness while discarding the hollow heroism and shoehorned romance that have continuously plagued Marvel films.
It’s not entirely free of blame (what’s the main villain’s name again?), but certainly a step in the right direction.
The most fun I’ve had watching a Marvel movie since the first Guardians of the Galaxy.
4.) Star Wars Episode VIII: The Last Jedi
“Oh, but Snoke’s character was never developed!”
Yeah, and neither was Emperor Palpatine’s until the prequels came out 16 years later, you fucking idiot.
He was just some old dude who shot lighting, hilariously taunted Luke, and then got thrown down a shaft. That’s it. The end.
Moral of the story: angry nerds are the worst people in the entire First World.
Despite universal acclaim from critics all over the world, The Last Jedi was reviled by about half of the Star Wars fanbase.
Most of the criticism was directed at how the film seemed too eager to subvert typical Star Wars tropes and plot cadences.
Basically, people think that these films should unfold in a very predictable way and were really upset when Episode VIII broke outside the mold and took a completely different direction.
Some even said things like “Episode VIII ruined my childhood”
I have a few things to say to this type of criticism:
- Fuck your childhood
- If Star Wars means this much to you→ get a life
- Heaven forbid that The Last Jedi tried to do something new to the franchise, especially when The Force Awakens was criticized for being too similar to Episode IV
I agree that the plot of TLJ was muddled, that certain character/plot arcs were inconsequential (like Finn and Rose’s adventure), and that the humor was a bit overbearing at times.
That’s fine. Every movie has flaws.
Disliking it just because it was different than you expected is…a bit immature. But when considering how passionate people are getting about a franchise with space wizards and shit, I suppose that makes sense.
I liked this movie. It took a lot of risks, and even though not all of them worked out, it was a welcomed change of pace to the same Good vs. Evil narrative nonsense.
Is it the best of the franchise? No, don’t kid yourself.
But it’s certainly better than any of the prequels, and maybe even Episode VI.
….except for that Force Leia shit. That was just downright embarrassing.
3.) The Disaster Artist
This movie is all about your perspective going into it.
By that, I mean your enjoyment is largely dependent on whether you’ve seen The Room and/or read The Disaster Artist.
From what I’ve gathered, seeing The Room gives you the context necessary to fully enjoy this film, while reading the book might give you too much context to the extent where you find the movie a little disappointing.
Luckily, I’ve yet to read the book, so I absolutely loved this film.
It’s a riveting exploration of chasing a dream, and the vehicle for this theme is perhaps the most interesting filmmaker in recent memory.
I know that people really value consistency, but I really enjoyed how The Disaster Artist jumped around a range of different tones and emotions at sporadic intervals.
And I think that’s because this shouldn’t be considered a straightforward comedy. It’s an examination of a man who, while funny at times, was a borderline sociopath with an unrelenting desire to make his dream a reality.
I think there’s a lot of heart in that, which is why I’m ranking this thing so damn high.
This movie was fucking amazing.
Logan showed the world that not every superhero movie needs to be a melodramatic, over-the-top spectacle with morally straight forward characters and the occasional wisecrack.
Appropriately titled, Logan is more of a character study than a “we defeat da bad guy” experience.
We get to see the fabled Wolverine actually struggle to heal→ physically, mentally, and emotionally. In the process, he has to re-learn what it truly means to be a hero.
It almost has hint of old Western films in it, as we see a jaded ex-ranger take one more ride through the life he once desperately tried to flee.
With some winks to older X-Men films and some heartwarming real-world crossovers (like the comic book), I don’t think there could have been a better way to end Hugh Jackman (or “Huge Jackedman”)’s career as Wolverine.
1.) Get Out
A masterfully layered film, rife with real-world parallels that some idiots overlooked and mistook for comedy.
The themes certainly kept people talking for months, but what started the conversation was its universal acclaim from critics (99% on Rotten Tomatoes).
I actually first saw this movie in the theater with a White woman→ who didn’t allow me to go on her porch or park in her driveway when I came over.
So while the relevance was certainly there, I was a bit surprised to see that this was made by one half of Key & Peele.
For those who don’t know, I actually hate Key & Peele because I think it’s mostly surface level jokes and overacted caricatures.
So it was really surprising to see Jordan Peele display such dense concepts in a very clever way. In fact, the film’s themes and motifs were so idiosyncratic that I wonder what it’s like for a non-Black person to watch it.
The explaining of such things was subject of (by far) the most viewed article on this website.
But it seemed like most people got the gist, which is why I think this film was just as important to greater narratives in 2017 as it was engaging to watch.
Thanks for reading!
Well that was a little longer than I thought it was be.
Thanks for sticking around, and see you tomorrow!