Posts Tagged ‘Mission: Impossible – Fallout’

I will be posting my top ten favourite movies of 2018 later this morning.  Before that, here are the nearly made it movies, the ones I loved that just missed out on the top ten:The Next Best Movies Of 2018.jpg


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After a rather lean June, normal service is resumed in July with ten movies, none of which disappointed.  Only one can be movie of the month, here are the contenders.

Leave No Trace – Debra Granik’s long awaited follow-up to Winter’s Bone.  A quieter and more subtle movie than her previous film, but like Winters Bone its strength lies in a combination of taught direction, and fantastic performances, here from Thomasin McKenzie and the always reliable Ben Foster.Leave No Trace

Sicario 2: Soldado – Sicario is one of my favourite movies of recent years.  I was sceptical as of a sequel especially without director Denis Villeneuve and star Emily Blunt.  On a positive note, writer Taylor Sheridan is back.  Looking back at the original film, while Emily Blunt is the audiences way into the story and gives the strongest performance, Josh Brolin and particularly  Benicio Del Toro are the most interesting characters.  While not as good as the original, it is still an excellent movie with Del Toro excelling in what has morphed into the leading role.Benicio Del Toro

Hereditary – Superior horror that relies on tension and suspense rather than jump scares.  The centre of the movie is Toni Collette’s sensational performance.  I’m not sure the greatest or defining horror of the era tags are earned but it certainly has more to offer than most movies of the genre. Hereditary

Ocean’s 8 – The latest instalment in the Oceans franchise swaps the original cast for an all female one.   As a con/heist movie it offers nothing new to the genre, but that really doesn’t matter when the stars are as charismatic and watchable as Sandra Bullock and Cate Blanchett.  I would certainly be happy to see oceans nine and ten. Ocean's 8

Whitney – I wouldn’t call myself a Whitney Houston fan, I liked her earlier pop records from the late 80’s but never go got the whole diva, greatest singer in the world  claims of her mid career.  The second film about her in as many years, I didn’t see the Nick Broomfield film so learnt a lot here.  A solid film with some startling revelations but not as compelling as  Amy (2015), Janis: Little Girl Blue (2015) or even Kevin Macdonald’s Marley (2012). Whitney-UK-poster

Mary Shelley – The story of Mary Wollstonecraft Godwin from just before she met Percy Shelley  upto and including the publication of Frankenstein.  An atmospheric and involving story that takes a few liberties with the facts as you would expect, and to quote Mark Kermode, ” there are plenty of “chubby, herm!” moments”.  Elle Fanning is always interesting to watch. Mary Shelley

The First Purge – The original Purge film was an interesting concept that did really well.  As you would expect for a Blumhouse Production, the first sequel expanded on both the idea and the scope of the film.  The third film was had run out of ideas so largely repeated the second film.  This latest film is a prequel going back to the origin of The Purge.  There is an interesting plot point that is very contemporary and prescient, but other than that, like part three, they have run out of ideas.  Unless someone has an interesting way direction to take the story, The First Purge should be the Last Purge. The First Purge

Hotel Artemis – Drew Pearce’s feature debut is a high concept sci-fi built on great characters, played by a fantastic cast.  A little more than the action film the trailer promises, it has more than a hint of High Noon. It is also often very funny usually because of Dave Bautista.  I could have done without Charlie Day. Hotel Artemis

First Reformed – Paul Schrader is back on form with a film in the transcendental style that he has spoken about so much in the past.  Ethan Hawke is on career high form at the heart of the film.  Don’t be fooled into thinking this is a religious Father Toller’s (Hawke) crisis is an existential one, not religious.   Not widely released, but worth searching for.   First Reformed

Mission: Impossible – Fallout – Back for the sixth instalment of the franchise, and breaking with tradition it has a returning director, frequent Tom Cruise collaborator Christopher McQuarrie.  Despite the near two and half hour runtime you don’t get a moment to breath.  The plot that initially seems complicated is actually very simple, and also totally superfluous, this is all about the spectacle.   Possibly the best of the series, if not it comes a close second. Mission Impossible Fallout

Of the ten, four make the shortlist: Sicario 2: Soldado is better than many previous winners.  Mission: Impossible – Fallout comes close as proof that a big budget franchise movie can still be a great film.  Ultimately, Leave No Trace comes a close second to the haunting First Reformed. First Reformed poster

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