Top 10 Movies of 2019

December 29, 2019

Killer clown and painting houses. 2019 has been an extraordinary year for movies, it witnessed great cinema moments like the culmination of the biggest movie franchise of all time, Martin Scorsese’s Netflix debut, and the entry of the first R rated movie in the billion-dollar club. From Bong Joon-ho to David Leitch, here’s our top to movies of 2019.




1) Parasite





Bong Joon-ho's Parasite is a story about a prideful but desperate family trying to crawl their way up from their poverty through minimum wage jobs for another oblivious rich family. It made me ask myself questions that I would normally never think about, are rich people nice? or are they nice because they’re rich? It is quite heartbreaking seeing the lengths people are willing to go just so they can simply live, and the film's commentary on how class solitary can trump patriotism resonates globally. Parasite is a funny heartbreaking experience that will make you ask questions and reflect on your reality. Its social commentary is nothing new, but the way the film goes about it is vastly superior.


2) The Irishman



Martin Scorsese’s The Irishman is not just a movie, it’s also a testament to his unparalleled originality even in a genre so well explored within his filmography. The three and a half hour epic jumps through time telling the story of a real-life hitman Frank Sheeran played by ‘Robert De Niro’ who was accused of killing Jimmy Hoffa ‘Al Pacino’. The genre certainly isn’t new to Scorsese, De Niro, and Al Pacino, but the vulnerability of this film feels like a jarring goodbye to it. The Irishman portrays the real life of the mob that was absent in Goodfellas, it shows the remorse and brutality behind the glamour. The Irishman is an intimidating yet melancholic wild ride that begins with a bang and ends with a parting shot that would haunt your mind for a while.



3) US



US is a film that could easily be mistaken for mediocre, however, it’s anything but. If you really pay attention you’ll find yourselves discovering new details and connections after every re-watch. Jordan Peele’s US lacks Get Out’s obvious social commentary, but it proves it can stand on its own without it. The horror film has a simple plot about a family who is haunted by their doppelgangers on their beach vacation, but the twists and thriller elements are what really elevate this from other movies in its genre. You will not find out the reason why this is happening until the very end, but the wait will be worth it.



4) Joker




What happens when you push a man too far? You get what you deserve. Joker is about a broken man living in an unforgiving society that refuses to take the blame for the monster that he has become. Despite the graphic violence that takes place the scariest aspect of this film is how real and accurate it is. The film is set in the 80s in a fictional city yet a lot of what was happening feels very true to our current time and place. From child abuse stories that we read almost daily on the headlines to society’s unfair treatment of mentally ill people, the parallelisms are nothing short of dead-on and melancholic.



5) Once Upon a Time in Hollywood



Once Upon a Time in Hollywood is Tarantino’s most mature work to date. The film is filled with his typical violence, unforeseeable outcomes, and intelligent comedic relief. The obvious events this film is portraying are handled very well and remain respectful. While it is not for everyone, Once Upon a time remains a masterful storytelling construct told through marvelous locations. As soon as you finish watching it you’ll want to watch it again, it is an addicting, riveting and engrossing experience for cinema lovers.



6) The Farewell



It is considered a noble tradition in China for a family to hide the fact that someone is terminally ill from him so that they can live out the rest of their lives in peace. This piece of information is what this film is based on. Billie played by Awkwafina delivers a heartbreaking performance as a granddaughter struggling and battling her emotions from telling the truth to her grandmother. The farewell is a well-directed, acted, written film about morality and culture.


7) Knives Out



Unlike most murder mystery genre films today, Rian Johnson’s Knives Out will never leave you bored. Instead of one final big reveal, Knives out aims to alter your reality with mind-blowing plot twists throughout its two-hour run-time. The film starts with the death of a celebrity author ‘Harlan Thrombey’ that leads to the reunion of his family members hoping to claim his inheritance. However, their ambitions get delayed once a private investigator gets involved in the author’s mysterious death. The high profile cast looks like they’re having fun during every minute of the movie which translates easily to the audience. The humor is effortless and impactful, it never feels redundant or lazy. Overall, Johnson’s ability to add an original touch to anything he touches will always be a win for cinema.




8) Clemency



If you watched The Green Mile and it made you uncomfortable, then don’t watch this. Clemency dives way deeper than The Green Mile did in the same subject matter that is bound to make you uneasy and a bit nauseous. It’s a difficult watch, but it’s worth it. Alfre Woodard deliverers an Oscar-worthy performance playing a prison warden Bernadine Williams who is preparing to execute another inmate. The film deals with Williams's demons as she struggles to carry out her job on an inmate whom she shares a special connection with.


9) Glass



While it does feel like it came out ages ago, it was only this year. M. Night Shyamalan continues to flip the superhero genre and treat it as his own Frankenstein, and it works. Glass is this year's most criminally underrated movie that is meant to give us closure to our favorite morally corrupt heroes. It has a great twist that leaves the door open for more films to follow through, while also remaining consistent enough to stand on its own.




10)  Hobbs & Shaw



This is not a great piece of cinema, it’s just a great piece of fun. We are currently going through the epidemic of passable movies, and Hobbs & Shawn reigns supreme. It doesn’t have some philosophical message or a grand script, it’s just a movie filled with Jason Statham and Dwayne Johnson bickering and fighting each other and some bad guys. It is filled with explosions, unrealistic car jumping feats and family. What more do we honestly want?



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