Scott’s Best Films Of 2016

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Hey everyone. Scott here. Okay, last week I gave you the worst of the worst. Now I’m going to give you the best of the best. I was going to make the list twenty films, but I couldn’t find five films from fifteen to twenty that distinguished themselves from one another. I liked them all equally. So, I have a list of fifteen movies that you MUST see sometime in the near future. As always, we have an honorable mention list because everyone nowadays gets a participation award. Well, except for Suicide Squad. The exclusion of two movies from either list might raise some eyebrows or ruffle a few feathers, so I will get them out of the way now. Sorry, but I found Zootopia and Arrival to be extremely overrated. Don’t shoot me. I didn’t hate either one of them, but I didn’t love them either. Quick disclaimer: I have yet to see Martin Scorsese’s Silence. I see it early next week, so I will make the necessary adjustments if needed. Let’s get started.

 

HONORABLE MENTION

TONI ERDMANN

THE WAILING

MIDNIGHT SPECIAL

THE WITCH

THE JUNGLE BOOK

LOVING

LION

SNOWDEN

FINDING DORY

THE EDGE OF SEVENTEEN

NOCTURNAL ANIMALS

THE INFILTRATOR

SWISS ARMY MAN

HUSH

DON’T THINK TWICE

 

 

MY TOP 15 FILMS OF 2016

15) SING STREET

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Sing Street is an infectious love letter to anyone who just can’t get enough 80’s music. I happen to be one of those people. If you don’t walk away from Sing Street with a smile plastered on your face, you have no soul. It’s paint by numbers, but man is it good.

14) DEADPOOL

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Sorry Captain America: Civil War but Deadpool was my favorite Marvel film this year. Ryan Reynolds’s sarcastic wit and self-deprecating approach to Wade Wilson/Deadpool, took the box office by storm. One of the most entertaining films of 2016.

13) KUBO AND THE TWO STRINGS

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Forget Zootopia and Finding Dory, Kubo and the Two Strings was my favorite animated movie of the year. The films overall detail is absolutely stunning and to top it all off, the Kubo and the two Strings is incredibly sad. Loved it.

12) 10 CLOVERFIELD LANE

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From start to finish, 10 Cloverfield Lane had me on pins and needles. It was like watching a feature length episode of Dateline with an Alfred Hitchcock twist added for good measure. John Goodman’s work here is Oscar worthy. Those of you complaining about the film’s last 15 minutes? You might want to revisit the title of the movie.

11) TRAIN TO BUSAN

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Want some advice? Stop watching dreck like The Walking Dead and go seek out Train to Busan. The film isn’t just gorgeous, it’s absolutely nerve wracking. The action sets are some of the best you will see in cinema and what surprised me the most about Train to Busan is how much heart the film has. Here we have an action packed Zombie movie that requires Kleenex. What more could you ask for?

10) THE NEON DEMON

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The Neon Demon is a divisive animal that people loved to love or loved to hate. Me? I was on the fence after my initial viewing. I adored the look of the film but wasn’t quite sure all of the puzzle pieces fit the way director Nicholas Winding Refn had intended. On my second and third viewings I just absorbed everything and came to the conclusion that The Neon Demon isn’t just compelling cinema, but it’s a work of art as well. It’s not for everyone, but give it a chance and The Neon Demon might just suck you in a trance.

9) HACKSAW RIDGE

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Quite simply, Hacksaw Ridge is the best war film I have seen since Saving Private Ryan. It is incredibly graphic,relentless and unforgiving. Director Mel Gibson proves that he’s still got what it takes to be an A-list Hollywood director. The best part of the film is that it is true.

8) GREEN ROOM

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Green Room is a dark and disturbing film that is guaranteed to get under your skin.Here we have the cinematic equivalent of a train wreck and you just can’t look away. The whole cast in Green Room is great and just when you think things can’t possibly get any worse, they do.

7) HUNT FOR THE WILDERPEOPLE

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Hunt for the Wilderpeople was my favorite family film of the year. In a way it reminded me of Disney’s Up with a much more refined sense of humor. Another film with enough heart for three movies.

6) O.J.:MADE IN AMERICA

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O.J: Made in America can pretty much close the book on the life of O.J. Simpson and the infamous trial that rocked the world. Going into this documentary I was truly skeptical of what the film and filmmakers intentions were seeing as we “thought” we knew all there was to know on the subject. Wow was I wrong. Director Ezra Edelman hasn’t just given us a look behind the curtain, he’s absolutely ripped the curtain off in showing us things we had never known or seen involving the O.J. Simpson case.  O.J.: Made in America is a masterclass in film-making and  one of the most riveting documentaries I have ever seen.

5) MANCHESTER BY THE SEA

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In my opinion, Casey Affleck gave the best performance in Manchester By the Sea than any other actor in any other film this year. Manchester isn’t always easy to watch as director Kenneth Lonergan doesn’t shy away from some pretty gut-wrenching subject matter. What makes Manchester By the Sea so great is it doesn’t feel like a Hollywood movie, it feels like an intimate story that could be unfolding with a family member, a neighbor, or anyone you know.  This is some great stuff.

4) HELL OR HIGH WATER

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I just can’t get enough of Hell or High Water. I have now seen the film 6 or 7 times and what surprises me the most is just how damn funny it is. Here we have a movie that centers around two brothers robbing a bank chain with Jeff Bridges as the sheriff faced with the task of trying to stay one step ahead of them. Hell or High Water is a must see.

3) THE NICE GUYS

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As far as pure entertainment from start to finish, no film had me laughing like The Nice Guys. Shane Black’s new yet retro look at the buddy cop genre sparkles with wit and Gosling and Crowe are just outstanding. This is a film that will only get better with repeat viewings and just might be the bets time I had in a movie theater in 2016.

2) MOONLIGHT

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Moonlight is an absolutely flawless film. Director Barry Jenkins has made a truly heartbreaking yet beautiful film about a man’s struggle to find himself. This is cinema at it’s finest and Moonlight could have easily been my number one film of the year if it wasn’t for…..

1) LA LA LAND

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La La Land is an easy choice for me as the best film of 2016 and it wasn’t even close. I have now seen it four times and honestly, I could go see it again. I don’t particularly like musicals so for a film to get me to make numerous pilgrimages to various theaters across South Florida is quite the accomplishment. Damien Chazelle’s film  about two star crossed dreamers was a beacon of light in an absolutely dismal year. The soundtrack alone has been playing in my head on an around the clock loop for the better part of two months. La La Land wasn’t just the best movie of 2016, it is a classic that will be talked about for years to come.