10 years is a long time and on occasion, there are films that simply slip by and get forgotten. So, welcome to a list of 9 films that you may have missed and are more than worthy of a watch as we end this decade and start a nice fresh one!
The Scottish Play is stunning. Totally and utterly stunning. There are not many adaptions os Shakespeares’ plays that I enjoy, but I was entranced for the entire running time. The chemistry between Michael Fassbender and Marion Cotillard is electric. Both elevating each other immensely with Cotillard shining brightest. Dialogue is removed that should be there, but in its place is an eerily stillness that in the end helps push the script. Terrific from top to bottom.
North America received a theatrical release and from reports, it was beautiful to few on the big screen. The trailer showed glimpses of utterly breathtaking world-building and scenery, yet the studio simply did not believe in it and sold it to Netflix to the rest of the world. As we were robbed of seeing this film on the big screen it brings a sense of sadness to it. Relegating it to Netflix is such a disservice to a film that is glorious not only to look at but acted as well. The all-female team led by Natalie Portman is the type of character you want people to see. An all-female team in a science fiction film is worthy of your time and Portman’s performance as always is very strong. An absolute must-watch for fans of the genre.
What a terrific film, yet it will be one that most people will not remember from Paul Thomas Anderson. It is one that truly epitomises 1970’s LA in an era when the trust was hard to come by. It is a film that even after multiple viewings you will take more home with you than you remembered from the previous viewing and what great movie doesn’t get better with repeat viewings? The performances throughout are stellar with Phoniex seemingly having this role written for him even though it is an adaption. Everything works and slides in at a lovely pace. There is no need for big punchlines in Inherent Vice, instead, the plentiful amounts of humour are from the performances and the situations that the film hazily guides itself through. A modern cult classic
Disobedience is full of raw emotion. The performances by the three leads are raw, the love scene between Ronit and Esti is as raw as you will see. Though the plot is obvious the acting, cinematography and direction guide the viewer through the lives of three broken people. Ronit, broken by having to leave her family and faith because of her sexuality. Esti, by not being as brave as Ronit and dealing with those consequences. And Dovid who knows his future without getting a choice in the matter. Director Sebastian Lelio doesn’t let us breathe throughout the film, framing the audience close. A film that deserved better than it’s release date and the amount of people that saw it. Read my review here
Edge of Tomorrow
Loved by critics and audiences (who saw it) but not a great success at the box office. Edge of Tomorrow or Live, Die, Repeat. (stupid title, Edge of Tomorrow is a better title) is one of those films that makes you celebrate and get crushed after every single Tom Cruise death. You always wonder how many times Tom Cruise has died on screen and here he gets to again and again. Perfect for someone who dislikes him! Sharply written with Cruise and Emily Blunt bringing everything to the film. It is worth many watches, but sadly it could be forgotten about forever if that sequel never materialises… Fingers crossed!
Dark comedies are always going to give me joy and it is hard to come much darker than a serial killer who talks to the decapitated heads of his victims. Generally liked by critics, but not by an audience, which was strange, but I believe the audience did not expect the film they eventually received. If released now, it would do much better. 2015 was a weird time! It is just an odd film that strangely connected with me… I do not know if that is a good or a bad thing!
Let’s just start off with the obvious, this is a magnificent film and I will forever be aghast at all that Jake Gyllenhaal did not win the big awards for this role. His performance in this film drives it so much. Eddie Redmayne for Theory of Everything? Nah, I’m good. The fact that he didn’t even get NOMINATED for an Oscar is mind-blowing. Showing non-US audiences what the ambulance chaser world is partly like was quite eye-opening and it was not just Gyllenhaal that was extraordinary, Riz Ahmed was just as good. The film received the biggest snubs of the decade with the Academy and it is one that absolutely NEEDS to be watched. Just do not watch the trailer, it presents it as a different film.
Bone Tomahawk is one of the best horror westerns ever made. Now granted, that list isn’t very long, but as the western has had a bit of a resurgence over the past 19 years, this one stands out for being so… Bold. It knows exactly what it is and it does not compromise itself for anyone or anything. Everyone in the cast is bringing their A-game here with Kurt Russell and Patrick Wilson excelling. Telling a story of what it probably should and was like for people to enter deep into Indian territory. Not many if anyone should get out unscathed and this film reminds you of that fact.
Speaking of bold. Last on my list is Four Lions, a film whose very premise should not be funny in the slightest, but under Christopher Morris it is riotous. Who knew a story about 4 people trying to become terrorists would have so much humour? Morris is at his best when he writes scathing satire and this is top-notch. A lot can be said about how poor it was for comedy in the 2010s, but the films that really made us take notice were removed from that traditional “comedy” spectrum. Dark satire is rare to come by and even rarer to be done right. Four Lions get it right and then some.
That are some of my top picks for the decade. Are there any you think should be on there, what is your list? Let me know! Until next time.