My Favorite Films of 2018-Part One

Starting the new blog with a look back on my favorite films of 2018

2018 has been an amazing year for me personally. I am going into my third year of college where I am studying Film and Media Studies. I also attended the Toronto International Film Festival for the second time, seeing over twenty films over the entirety of the festival. Most importantly, one year ago, I started my film blog where I hoped to discuss my love of film with the masses, opening a civilized dialogue about what we love, what we hate, and everything in between about movies.

As of this writing, I have seen over 150 2018 releases, and while there are many that I will be getting to soon, I have constructed a finalized list of my eighteen favorite films of 2018. There is an extensive honorable mentions list that you can find at my old blog, For now, here are my favorite films of 2018, spots 18-11.

#18: First Reformed

There are about four other films I could have put in the final spot, including Infinity War, Black Panther, If Beale Street Could Talk, and The Hate U Give. However, First Reformed, starring Ethan Hawke and Amanda Seyfried, is the film that has stuck with me the most. Written and directed by Paul Schrader, Hawke’s portrayal of a man of the cloth with a heavy conscience is both haunting and enlightening. The ending may not be for everyone, but by leaving more questions than answers, it left the audience at the screening I saw this film at buzzing.

#17: Isle of Dogs

The first of two animated films to make my list, Wes Anderson’s Isle of Dogs is your typical quirky Wes Anderson movie, and that’s why I love it so much. Following a young boy trying to find his pet and protector after all the dogs in Japan are shipped to Garbage Island, the jam-packed ensemble cast does wonders with the material. This is on par with Anderson’s previous animated adventure The Fantastic Mr. Fox and may be my favorite of Anderson’s filmography.

#16: The Night Comes for Us

Iko Uwais, star of The Raid series, had two releases this year, and while Mile 22 may rank as my least favorite film, The Nights Comes for Us ranks on my list of favorites for one simple reason. This film is two full hours of brutality and action, with a third act fight sequence that is on par with any scene filmed this year. If you are a fan of The Raid films, seek this one out on Netflix.

#15: Green Book

Starring Viggo Mortensen and Mahershela Ali (in a role that has garnered him strong consideration for his second Best Supporting Actor Oscar), Green Book has been stirring up a lot of controversy as of late with the views of one of the co-writers, statements made by Mortensen, just to name a couple. However, this still ranks on my list because of the comradery of its two leads. It’s not perfect, but I found myself loving Tony Lipp and Dr. Shirley.

#14: Never Goin’ Back

Compact, crass, and hilarious, Never Goin’ Back is my favorite comedy of 2018, which is saying something in a year that saw the release of Game Night and Blockers. A simple story of two friends trying to get out of town to enjoy a birthday weekend on the beach, co-stars Camila Morrone and Maia Mitchell have amazing chemistry that shines on the screen. It is a shame that A24 buried this is a one-week release because this is a diamond in the rough.

#13: A Simple Favor

Continuing the trend of strong female-led films with two amazing co-stars, Anna Kendrick and Blake Lively elevate A Simple Favor with its sharp script and beautiful set and costume design. One part dark comedy, one part dramatic thriller, the interweaving story of how we get from beginning to end is made whole by the screenplay by Jessica Sharzer and is my favorite Paul Feig film since Bridesmaids.

#12: Crazy Rich Asians

One of the biggest surprise hits of 2018, Crazy Rich Asians took the world and Hollywood by storm, showing that you can have a commercial and financial success with an all-Asian cast. This is a film that is just pure fun, with a message that doesn’t matter where you come from, true love is something that is universal. I can admit when scenes get to me, and the only time I cried all year was during a beautifully crafted wedding scene (don’t judge me, you know what scene I am talking about, and you know you cried, too).

#11: Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse

In a year that saw the much-anticipated release of Incredibles 2, Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse has come out of nowhere and is now the odds on favorite to win the Oscar for Best Animated Feature. A true comic book that comes to life, Spiderverse explodes on the screen with stunning animation, all the while telling a story we have seen before told in a way we have yet to see. Tom Holland is great as Spider-Man in the MCU, but Shameik Moore as Miles Morales is my Spider-Man of choice this year.

Later this week I will be posting what made my list of Top 10 Favorites of 2018? What do you think will make the list? Comment below, and as always, please be civil.


Author: Sean Blanford

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