Phil’s 5 Best Films of 2016 (Updated)

Phil’s 5 Best Films of 2016 (Updated)

2016: In Review Quick Review Year In Review

So 2016 may be in the rear mirror but having now seen a few of 2016’s last few must see movies I’m having a do-over and republishing my list of the best films of 2016.

So here it is: my FINAL pick of the BEST films of 2016.

 

Film of The Year: The Nice Guys 
In Brief: It was pretty much Room or The Little Prince all the way this year until The Nice Guys came along.  But then any film directed and written by one of my favourite filmmakers in Shane Black was always going to have a fighting chance. Smart, funny and sharp as a tack… The Nice Guys is the best film you probably didn’t see this year!

2.  Kubo And The Two Strings
In Brief: : Paranorman, Coraline, The Boxtrolls and now Kubo.  That was high bar for sure but amazingly Kubo sets it higher still. Near perfect.

3. The Little Prince
In Brief:  Who saw this coming?  Adaptation of a popular kids book, released almost exclusively on Netflix. But man it knocked it out the park.  Brilliantly animated and heart wrenchingly performed, Little Prince is up there with the best of the genre.

4.  Sing Street
In Brief: Much like Sunshine Of Leith a few years back, Sing Street brings the songs, the charms and the heart and brings them all in spades.  One of the best films of the year for sure.

5. Hunt for The Wilder People
In Brief: A coming of age family drama that will spawn a million “Shit Got real” T-shirts.  Worth all the amazing reviews…

6. Room

7. Rogue One: A Star Wars Story

8. Moana

9. Green Room

10. The Girl With All The Gifts

Bubbling Under:  Deadpool, The Big Short, Arrival, Doctor Strange,  Train To Busan, Eddie The Eagle, Midnight Special , Creed, Bad Moms, Spotlight 

 

The Best and the Worst of 2016 – Motion Picture Maniac

The Best and the Worst of 2016 – Motion Picture Maniac

A Blog Motion Picture Maniac

2016 absolutely sucked, not just because we had, what felt like, twice as many bad films as usual, but more celebrity deaths than one can count and the UK and US trying to out-do each other in the “see who can make the worst political decision ever” competition. But alas, we are here just to talk about the films we had this past year, and usually I would stick to top 10 lists but it seems 2016 was so prolific I had to go for dreaded top 20’s instead of 10’s; not sure if that means the year was extra good, or extra bad.

TOP 20 BEST FILMS OF 2016

I’ve heard wonderful things about Moonlight, Patriot’s Day, Manchester By The Sea and Silence but they are yet to come out in UK just yet, so don’t go thinking they’re not on the list because I didn’t like them or any such nonsense, I just haven’t seen them so I can’t comment. Either way, here are my personal favourite films of 2016, if you don’t like them – tough!

  1. Everybody Wants Some!!
  1. The Girl With All The Gifts
  1. Moana
  1. Café Society
  1. Anthropoid
  1. Hush
  1. The Neon Demon
  1. Brotherhood
  1. Deadpool
  1. Zootopia
  1. 13th
  1. Finding Dory
  1. Hell Or High Water
  1. Arrival
  1. Deepwater Horizon
  1. Captain America: Civil War
  1. Batman V Superman: Dawn Of Justice – Ultimate Edition (I’m not sorry)
  1. Rogue One: A Star Wars Story
  1. American Honey
  1. I, Olga Hepnarova

HONOURABLE MENTIONS

The Conjuring 2

Midnight Special

Sully

Hail Caesar

Doctor Strange

 

DISQUALIFICATIONS

These titles were released in 2016, but IMDB, for whatever reason, decided to count them as 2015 releases, I choose to put them in their own list not to put them down but rather as an excuse to include as many good films as possible, if I included them in the main list I would have to remove some other titles already on there, and even if the disqualifications are better than those films I would have to take off the list to make room, I would still rather do it this way so none are left out, honourable mentions are difficult enough to pick out.

Knight Of Cups

Eye In The Sky

Son Of Saul

Green Room

The Witch

 

BOTTOM 20 WORST FILMS OF 2016

Now for the other list, the 20 movies this year that made me question my existence and hate myself for sitting in front of as they played out, like I said before, this was a bad year for films, I tried to keep it to 10 slots but it couldn’t be done, better luck next year.

  1. Dirty Grandpa
  1. The Boss
  1. Fifty Shades Of Black
  1. My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2
  1. God’s Of Egypt
  1. Allegiant
  1. Pete’s Dragon
  1. The Choice
  1. Alice Through The Looking Glass
  1. Ice Age: Collision Course
  1. Mother’s Day
  1. The Other Side Of The Door
  1. Swallows And Amazons
  1. Equity
  1. Me Before You
  1. Ballerina
  1. Dad’s Army
  1. Nine Lives
  1. Norm Of The North
  1. Miracles From Heaven

NOTE – Miracles From Heaven is the worst film of the year for me because, despite not having production values as horrid as some of the other films on the list, religious propaganda just rubs me the wrong way, especially when it’s as arrogant and pompous as this and not just badly made (which it is).

 

DISHONOURABLE MENTIONS

The Boy

Risen

Now You See Me 2

Keeping Up With The Joneses

The Forest

 

BEST LINES IN NO PARTICULAR ORDER

*Everything he says* – Ryan Reynolds in Deadpool

“I need to get her out of me” – Bella Heathcote in The Neon Demon

“Be careful not to choke on your aspirations, director” – James Earl Jones in Rogue One: A Star Wars Story

“To commit suicide you need a strong will, my child. Something you certainly don’t have” – Klara Meliskova in I, Olga Hepnarova

“If God is all powerful, he cannot be all good, and if he is all good, he cannot be all powerful” – Jesse Eisenberg in Batman V Superman (again, I’m not sorry)

“I hope he comes all over your car!” – Sasha Lane in American Honey

“You’d think there were ten of me” – Ben Foster in Hell Or High Water

“I am just a dumb bunny but we are good at multiplying” – Ginnifer Goodwin in Zootopia

“Never tell a soldier he does not know the cost of war” – Alan Rickman in Eye In The Sky

“Suck it, bipeds” – Ed O’Neil in Finding Dory

 

TOP SURPRISINGLY GOOD PERFORMANCES

Shia LaBeouf in American Honey

Gal Gadot in Batman V Superman

The Rock in Moana

Jamie Dornan in Anthropoid

Jai Courtney in Suicide Squad

Aaron Taylor-Johnson in Nocturnal Animals

 

MEMORABLE SCENES

Darth Vader rebel massacre – Rogue One: A Star Wars Story

Church shootout – Anthropoid

Granny’s peach tea – Batman V Superman

Airport royal rumble – Captain America: Civil War

Alone at the morgue – The Neon Demon

Truck murder – I, Olga Hepnarova

Bye-bye baby – The Witch

They arrive – Arrival

Alan Rickman’s final scene – Eye In The Sky

The pit – Son Of Saul

 

FAVOURITE SOUNDTRACKS

Hans Zimmer & Junkie XL – Batman V Superman (notably “Is she with you” & “This is my world”)

Cliff Martinez – The Neon Demon

Johann Johannsson – Arrival

Robin Foster – Anthropoid

Opetaia Foa’i, Mark Mancina & Lin-Manuel Miranda – Moana

Michael Giacchino – Rogue One: A Star Wars Story (I know some people aren’t too fussed, but I most certainly was, especially the track “Your Father would be proud”)

Phil’s 2017 Preview & Look Back At 2016 Predictions…

Phil’s 2017 Preview & Look Back At 2016 Predictions…

Quick Review Year In Review

Phil’s Quick look at what’s wetting his whistle for the upcoming year in films…

Well 2016 was a bit… odd.  With most of the big films not quite hitting the mark, especially comic books films.  2017 looks like more of the same – big budget super heroes, franchises, remakes and sequels.  Here’s the films I’m most looking forward to in 2017.

 

Most Excited:  Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2
Marvel continues to do solid work, with Doctor Strange being a highlight of 2016.  Also Guardians was, simply put, bloody terrific.  Oh and have you seen THAT trailer.  Baby Groot? Atomic Bomb? Yup. Sold.

 

2. Star Wars Episode 8
Lucasfilm in the hands of Disney have given us two very good Star Wars films in the shape of The Force Awakens and Rogue One.   With the original cast (mostly) returning, more promised on the origins of Kylo Ren and Rey as well as a full return to the movies of Luke Skywalker… Episode 8 should be pretty special.

 

3. War For The Planet Of The Apes
Rise was great.  Dawn even better.  And now War.  Based on THAT trailer and a synopsis which promises the final showdown between ape and man (which should lead to the end of the world/Charlton Heston) this could be one of the best films of the year.

 

 

4. John Wick Chapter 2
John Wick was old school, martial arts awesomeness.  John Wick 2 promises a LOT more of the same.  I have my seat booked.

 

 

5.  T2: Trainspotting
Trainspotting remains one of the best films of the 90’s and one of the best British films ever. Whether T2 follows the source material of Porno or not is still to be seen but either way with the cast returning and Boyle back behind the camera this should deliver a great film.

 

Bubbling Under: Baywatch (Excellent Trailer), Lego Batman (It’s Lego. Batman. Done), Spiderman: Homecoming  (this could go either way to be honest but I’m hoping…), Silence (Scorsese. I’m in), Alien: Covenant (come on it HAS to be better than Prometheus!), The Dark Tower (could be the King adaptation we’ve always waited for), Kingsman: The Golden Circle (Original was amazing, same team).

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Stinker Of The Year: Transformers: The Last Knight
The previous 3 Transformers films have each rated in AT LEAST the bottom 3 of year they were released (some even rock bottom). Looking at the trailer for the fifth (yes FIFTH!) Michael Bay Transformers film does little to convince me that this will be anything but an utter mess.  It’s a bit like shooting fish in a barrel sure but come on there has to be ZERO chance of this being any good.


Also Dreading: Wonder Woman
 (The trailer is lacking, the film just doesn’t grab me), Blade Runner 2049 (Silly title, a sequel we just don’t need), Power Rangers (Urm not needed, not wanted), Logan (Want tone wrong but so far these films have just not worked), XXX: Return Of Xander Cage (Diesel is back. Nobody cares), Cars 3 (1 & 2 weren’t great) , The Mummy (Tom Cruise. A Mummy. I’ll pass).

 

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So how did I do last year?

This is the time of the year when I look back at my picks of the good, the bad and the ugly from 2016 and see how close I was (or as it often is the case, how far!)…

For the best: I tipped Captain America Civil War, Creed, Finding Dory, Deadpool & London Has Fallen as my most anticipated of 2016. Somewhat of a mixed bag with Creed & Deadpool sitting close to my top 10 with Creed my film of the year for a few months near the start of 2016.  Finding Dory was good but not good enough.  London Has Fallen, well that ended up being one of the worst films of the year for me.  As for Captain America Civil War? It promised a lot but fell short of the far superior Winter Solider from a few years back and Marvel’s very own Doctor Strange which was the best superhero film of the year.

 

As for the Stinkers? Point Break was terrible as expected and landed firmly in my bottom 5 for 2016. Batman Vs Superman was actually pretty fun (if flawed), The Hateful Eight overrated as I expected but there were worse films in 2016, Ghostbusters was forgettable, Warcraft was everything that’s wrong with game movie adaptations and the combination of sequels Divergent Allegiant & Independence Day Resurgence showed that both franchises have zero fun left in them and even less commercial appeal.  Only Star Trek Beyond rose above the dross as a truly fun film (until the silly somewhat overblown ending).

 

So here’s to 2016… see you again next year!

Phil’s End Of Year Awards 2016

Phil’s End Of Year Awards 2016

Quick Review Year In Review

So 2016 is almost over and it’s that time a year again where everyone reflects back on their best and worst films of the year.  So we’ve covered our best and our worst films of 2016, so before we look at the films coming up in 2016 here’s my ‘Alternative’ End of Year Awards for 2016…

 

The Most Entertainingly Bad Film Of The Year Award…
Gods Of Egypt

 

The best film to watch on a train as it makes it 100 times less shit Award…
Gods Of Egypt 


Surprise of The Year Award…
Low Budget films rule the roost!


Performance Of The Year Award…
Mark Kermode… for his oddly favourable reviews for his friends movies (see Jason Bourne)


Just Fuck Off and Die Award…

Michael Bay & the Transformers 5 trailer.


Least Deserving Commercial Bomb of The Year Award…
The Nice Guys

 

Come In Your time is Up Award…
Johnny Depp’s career (see Alice Through The Looking Glass & Yoga Hosers)

 

Trailer Of The Year Award…
Suicide Squad
Let Down of The Year Award…
Suicide Squad

 

It’s NOT the fact it has women in it, it’s just the fact it’s actually an average film Award…
Ghostbusters

 

The “Really? It takes some effort to fuck up this much” Award…
DC/Warner Brothers. How hard IS it to fuck up films with THESE characters?

 

Cameo of The Year Award…
Jesus (Ben Hur)

 

The Oscars only like REALLY famous dead people award for missing out other stars who died Award…
The Oscars for leaving out George Gaynes, Vanity, Gunnar Hanson & Rowdy Roddy Piper

 

The Proof That Award Shows Suck Award…
Sly Stallone, Creed, The Martian, Star Wars: The Force Awakens all missing out on awards

 

The Poof That Award Shows DONT Suck Award…
Ex Machina being awarded for Best Visual Effects


All reboots and remakes suck award and here’s the proof Award…
Point Break, Ghostbusters, Ben Hur

 

Okay so not ALL remakes & reboots suck Award…
Westworld. The Jungle Book.
Yup we just made it for the money award (aka The Sequels Suck Award…
Independence Day Resurgence, Jason Bourne, Now You See Me 2, Alice Through The Looking Glass

 

Films That SHOULD have been on my 2015 List’s but I Hadn’t Seen…
The Lady In The Van,  Straight Outta Compton, The Survivalist

 

Next time: Phil’s Look at 2016 and a look back at my 2017 predictions… 

Phil’s 5 Best Films of 2016 (Updated)

Phil’s 5 Best Films of 2016 (Updated)

Quick Review Year In Review

So 2016 is almost over and it’s that time a year again where everyone reflects back on their best and worst films of the year.

So here it is: my pick of the BEST films of 2016.

 

Film of The Year: The Nice Guys 
In Brief: It was pretty much Room or The Little Prince all the way this year until The Nice Guys came along.  But then any film directed and written by one of my favourite filmmakers in Shane Black was always going to have a fighting chance. Smart, funny and sharp as a tack… The Nice Guys is the best film you probably didn’t see this year!

2.  Rogue One: A Star Wars Story
In Brief:  Holy wow.  Blockbuster of the year, the 4th best Star Wars film and a film that **spoilers** managed to raise a horror icon from the dead.  A War film, a hiatus movie, a Star Wars story.  Yup… Rogue One is THAT good.

3. The Little Prince
In Brief:  Who saw this coming?  Adaptation of a popular kids book, released almost exclusively on Netflix. But man it knocked it out the park.  Brilliantly animated and heart wrenchingly performed, Little Prince is up there with the best of the genre.

4.  Room
In Brief: Was a contender from the moment I saw it and one of the few times that Oscar bate lives up to it’s billing. It’s touching, masterfully made and beautiful.

5. Moana
In Brief: A stunningly well made animation from Disney with heaps of charm, laughs and catchy songs.  A late entry into my Bets Of for 2016.

6. The Big Short
7. Green Room
8. Deadpool
9. Doctor Strange
10. Arrival

Bubbling Under: Eddie The Eagle, Midnight Special , Creed, Bad Moms, Zootropolis,  Star Trek Beyond, Spotlight 

 

Phil’s 5 Worst Films of 2016

Phil’s 5 Worst Films of 2016

2016: In Review Quick Review Year In Review

So 2016 is almost over and it’s that time a year again where everyone reflects back on their best and worst films of the year.

So first up… the 5 WORST film of 2016.  And there were quite a few to choose from..

Stinker of The Year: Point Break (2016)
In Brief: A film that had no purpose to exist.  Point Break touched on hallow ground for me so it would have to be pretty special for me to like it.  This film wasn’t.  In fact it totally sucked. Whilst the original was sharp, smart and exciting this remake is by the numbers, dull and worst of all made no sense. A bomb, critical failure and a mess.

 

 

2. Central Intelligence
In Brief: Neither funny or action packed, the first bomb the Rock has ever made.  Yes Central Intelligence is a film that the Rock can’t save.

3. London Has Fallen
In Brief: Other films scored worse but after the Top 5 film that was Olympus Has fallen, London Has Fallen was SUCH a come down that it, on reflection, rated as one of 2016’s worst films.

4. Inferno
In Brief: Oh Dear.  Ron Howard drops a total bollock with this horrid film.  Witness some of the worst dialogue ever put on screen with Tom Hanks worst performance.  Utter tosh.

5. Jason Bourne 
In Brief:  It’s almost criminal that a Bourne film could be this bad, especially as it reunites Greengrass and Damon. It was just dull.

6. Kickboxer Vengeance
7. The 5th Wave

8. The Girl On The Train 
9.  Cabin Fever
10. 31

 

Dis-Honourable Mentions: Divergent Allegiant, Triple 9, Bastille Day, The Mechanic Resurrection, Independence Day Resurgence, Dad’s Army

 

Phil’s 5 Best TV Shows of 2016

Phil’s 5 Best TV Shows of 2016

Quick Review Year In Review

So 2016 continued the golden age of television, outstripping it’s movie counterparts and delivering more essential must see content than any other medium: even with so many great shows either ended or in their twilight years.  So here’s my run down of my 5 favourite TV show for 2016… with a few nearly rans for good measure.

(Yet to watch Narcos Season 2 or Luke Cage)

 

 

TV Show of The Year: Westworld
In Brief: With a Nolan attached, THAT Cast and all the money HBO could throw at it Westworld could still have been a catastrophic flop BUT it wasn’t.  In fact it was revolutionary.  Yes Westworld is THAT good. From it’s complex plotting to it’s cinematic visuals, Westworld was a remake done right.  It’s just a sham we have to wait until 2018 to get the next part of the story…

2. Stranger Things
In Brief: Every so often a show or film comes from nowhere and captures the imagination of a generation, becoming a cultural phenomena along the way.  Stranger Things was THAT show.  The Spielberg/ Carpenter influenced style reminded everyone who lived through the 80’s how good the decade was (and how ripe it is for material like this), whilst the narrative, effects and performances kept people coming back for more.  With Season 2 production started, the Duffer’s have a mountain to climb to reach these heights again.


3. Game Of Thrones
In Brief: Once again hitting the Top 5, Thrones continues to be one of the best things on TV and season 6 was a real highlight.  From the reuniting of certain siblings, to the death of one of the most hated characters in the show Thrones stepped outside the constraints of its source material, picked up the pace, delivered several WFT moments and gave us a view on the future to come.  In short: Winter is coming.  And so are Dragons


4. The People Vs OJ Simpson: American Crime Story
In Brief:Who saw that coming?  A TV recreation of one of America’s most infamous trials starring a forgotten DTV Oscar winner alongside John Travolta and Ross from Friends, from the guy who made American Horror Story?  It couldn’t work.  But it did.  In spades.  And man was it good, delivering one of the best episodes of TV in 2016.   Gooding Jnr delivered as the narcissistic OJ but it was Sarah Paulson as Marcia Clark that stole the show.   If you missed it then you missed out for sure.


5. Silicon Valley
In Brief: Into it’s third year, Mike Judge’s tech comedy delivered it’s most constant and entertaining year to date.  Yes it’s throw away stuff but it’s damn funny with it.  It’s also sharp as a tack satire on the stupidity and excess of the Tech hub of the world with a convincing cast and cracking scripts.

 

Bubbling under:
Jessica Jones
 (another high quality Netflix/ Marvel TV show), High Maintenance (as surreal as comedy gets), Vice Principals (biting dark comedy), Veep (continued to graft another strong year),  The Night Of (Started well, dropped of a bit by the end), Better Call Saul (even stronger than last year), The Flash (ended season 2 strong and began Season 3 with a bang), Ash Vs The Evil Dead (still delivering)

[divider]

 

Miss of the year: The Walking Dead

In Brief: It wasn’t a BIG miss but the let down of Season 6’s ending (yes THAT cliff-hanger) after the Glenn fake out followed by a mostly lacklustre Season 7 so far has, for the first time, left me loosing a little interest in Rick and his crew.  The show is far from done for sure and there are still some great ideas and moments (Negan when used correctly is awesome) in it but overall it’s lost something this year and could be the sign that the shows lack of end game is starting to bite them. 

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review & Friends Turd of 2016 Award: Point Break

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review & Friends Turd of 2016 Award: Point Break

Other Cr*p Quick Review Year In Review

The votes are in, they have been counted an verified and I can now proudly announce the Winner of 2016’s Phil’s Quick Capsule Review & Guests Turd Of The Year award is… by a WIDE margin…

[divider]

Point Break (2016)
Without a doubt one of the most pointless films of 2016, Point Break is terrible.  Okay so some of the stunts are pretty impressive but you can watch that on YouTube.  Point Break 2016 strips away EVERYTHING that was good about the original and delivers a cookie cutter bad excuse for an action film.  Please don’t support this.  Watch the original instead! 

 

 

Close but no cigar: YOGA HOSERS

 

 

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review & Friends: 2016 In Review Podcast

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review & Friends: 2016 In Review Podcast

Other Cr*p Year In Review

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review End Of Year look at the best and worst of 2016 in podcast form.  Yes in a tradition that stretches back to The Film Podcast and filmsploitation before it, I get together some friends and we argue/debate./discuss the best and worst of 2016.  In a podcast.

And this year for the first time there’s a video also!

Join host Phil Hobden, podcaster Andrew Mackay, filmmaker Ross Boyask and writer Matt Duddy as they run down the best and worst films of 2016, their surprises, heroes and villains work through a legendary Ross Boyask quiz and help deliver the Quick Capsule Review’s end of year awards for 2016.

Available on Podcast (Via PodBean, YouTube and torrent).
For more check out www.philhobden.co.uk as well as searching The Smoking Lamb Podcast on itunes.

 

Download via Torrent Link 

 

Download on PodBean

 

 

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review & Friends FILMS TO WATCH For 2016 Part 2: Room, Sing Street, Snowden, Trumbo

Phil’s Quick Capsule Review & Friends FILMS TO WATCH For 2016 Part 2: Room, Sing Street, Snowden, Trumbo

Other Cr*p Quick Review Year In Review
The votes are in.  The long list reduced to just 9… and here they are, the Phil’s Quick Capsule Review & Guests list of the FILMS TO WATCH for 2016.  In no particular order:

 

#6: Room
A young boy is raised within the confines of a small shed.

 

 

 

[divider]
#7: Sing Street
A boy growing up in Dublin during the 1980s escapes his strained family life by starting a band to impress the mysterious girl he likes.

 

 

[divider]

 
#8: Snowden
The NSA’s illegal surveillance techniques are leaked to the public by one of the agency’s employees, Edward Snowden, in the form of thousands of classified documents distributed to the press.

 

 

[divider]

 

#9: Trumbo
In 1947, Dalton Trumbo was Hollywood’s top screenwriter, until he and other artists were jailed and blacklisted for their political beliefs.

 

 

 

[divider]

 

 

Next Time: Turd Of The Year for 2016!