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These are Dan’s Top 10 Films of 2019 So Far…

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Top 10 Films of 2019 so far…

by Dan Skip Allen

1. Rocketman: An epic musical biopic about the early years of Sir Elton John. Starring Taron Egerton, Richard Madden, Bryce Dallas Howard & Jamie Bell. Directed by Dexter Fletcher

Rocketman is a seamless musical/biopic. Taron Egerton gives the performance of his life as Sir Elton John. Dexter Fletcher directs the hell out of this film. This is what Bohemian Rhapsody should have been. 5 stars

2. Avengers: Endgame: This the epic conclusion of 11 years and and 22 films. It wraps up the Infinity Saga. Starring Robert Downey Jr., Chris Evans, Chris Hemsworth, Mark Ruffalo, Scarlett Johansson, Jeremy Renner, Josh Brolin, Karen Gillan and Bradley Cooper. Directed by Joe & Anthony Russo

Avengers Endgame was such perfect ending to the Infinity Saga. I loved the conclusions to Tony Stark/ Iron Man, Steve Rogers/Captain America and Thor’s Storylines. Kevin Fiege has done what he has set out to do. Where they are going next No one knows. This is definitely one of the best films of the year. 5 stars   

3. Spiderman: Far from Home. Following the events of Avengers: Endgame, Spider-Man must step up to take on new threats in a world that has changed forever. Starring Tom Holland, Jake Gyllenhaal, Samuel L. Jackson, Zendeya, Jon Favreau, Marisa Tomei, Jacob Battalon, Colbie Smoulders. Directed by John Watts

Spider-Man is back from the snap and he still has a lot of the same problems he had before the snap. This film is full of action and comedy. It has great acting, especially from Jake Gyllenhaal. This is a spectacular film all the way around. 4 ½ stars

4. Apollo 11: Never-before-seen footage and audio recordings take you straight into the heart of NASA’s most celebrated mission as astronauts Neil Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin and Michael Collins embark on a historic trip to the moon. Director Todd Douglas Miller

Definitely see Apollo 11 in IMax. It’s so breathtaking to watch as history unfolds. Where they put the cameras is amazing. Seeing footage from the LEM was incredible. Even though we know what happened 50 years ago I was still on the edge of my seat. 4 ½ stars

5. Yesterday: Jack Malik is a struggling singer-songwriter in an English seaside town whose dreams of fame are rapidly fading, despite the fierce devotion and support of his childhood best friend, Ellie. After a freak bus accident during a mysterious global blackout, Jack wakes up to discover that The Beatles have never existed. Performing songs by the greatest band in history to a world that has never heard them, Jack becomes an overnight sensation with a little help from his agent. Starring Himesh Patel and Lily James. Directed by Danny Boyle

Yesterday is a small film with a big heart. I love that we can take a simple concept of a man who falls down and when he wakes up, he is the only one who remembers the Beatles. It’s a fun movie with an equally fun romance. It has a few laughs along with some equally funny cameos. 4 stars

6. Stuber: When a mild-mannered Uber driver named Stu picks up a passenger who turns out to be a cop hot on the trail of a brutal killer, he’s thrust into a harrowing ordeal where he desperately tries to hold onto his wits, his life and his five-star rating. Starring Kumail Nanjiani, Dave Bautista, Karen Gillian. Directed Michael Dowse

Stuber is the funniest movie I’ve seen this year. The buddy team up concept hasn’t gone the way of the dodo bird yet. These two are the perfect team. One brawny police detective the other neurotic Uber driver. Who knew we needed this movie? I am glad we got it because I haven’t laughed that hard in a while. 4 stars

7. Booksmart: Academic overachievers Amy and Molly thought keeping their noses to the grindstone gave them a leg up on their high school peers. But on the eve of graduation, the best friends suddenly realize that they may have missed out on the special moments of their teenage years. Determined to make up for lost time, the girls decide to cram four years of not-to-be missed fun into one night — a chaotic adventure that no amount of book smarts could prepare them for. Starring Beanie Feldstien and Katlyn Dever. Directed by Olivia Wilde

Booksmart is one of the best coming of age films in recent memory. What these two girls get up to in this film is some of the funniest stuff I’ve watched all year. This has the makings of a film people will be talking about for years to come. All the great coming of age films are. This film has some breakout performances. I for one want to see these kids again in the future. 4 stars

8. Teen Spirit: A shy teenager dreams of escaping her small town and pursuing her passion to sing. With the help of an unlikely mentor, she enters a local singing competition that will test her integrity, talent and ambition. Starring Elle Fanning. Directed by Max Minghella

Teen Spirit is an interesting look at singing competitions. Elle Fanning covers so many musical talents of recent years. I was so entertained by the singing and the movie. Elle Fanning is amazing in the film as well. 4 stars

9. Longshot: Fred Flarsky is a gifted and free-spirited journalist who has a knack for getting into trouble. Charlotte Field is one of the most influential women in the world — a smart, sophisticated and accomplished politician. When Fred unexpectedly runs into Charlotte, he soon realizes that she was his former babysitter and childhood crush. When Charlotte decides to make a run for the presidency, she impulsively hires Fred as her speechwriter — much to the dismay of her trusted advisers. Starring Charlize Theron and Seth Rogan. Directed by Jonathan Levine

Longshot brings me back to romantic comedies of yesteryear. The chemistry between Theron and Rogan is palpable. Set during an election campaign. there are plenty of political jokes that hit the mark. Maybe we are in an era of new smart entertaining romantic comedies. Let’s hope so. 4 stars

10. Hotel Mumbai: Terror strikes in the heart of Mumbai, India, as members of Lashkar-e-Taiba storm the Taj Mahal Palace Hotel in a series of coordinated attacks throughout the city. Amid the gunfire and mayhem, a brave chef and kitchen worker decide to risk their own lives to try and protect the frightened guests. As the militants continue their assault on the hotel, a desperate couple must do whatever they can to protect their newborn baby. Starring Dev Patel, Armie Hammer, Jason Isaacs, Anupam Kher and Nazanin Boniadi. Directed by Anthony Maras

Hotel Mumbai is an action-packed film. It keeps you on the edge of your seat from the beginning to end. You just don’t know what is going to happen from moment to moment. The cast is fantastic, and the direction is first rate. 4 stars

Honorable Mentions: Midsommar, Late Night, Fighting With My Family, How to Train Your Dragon 3, Toy Story 4, Them That Follow, The Last Black Man in San Francisco