Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Best and Favorite Films of 2015

Favorite Films of 2015
2015 will be over tomorrow night, and blimey - it was an interesting and fun year! Even though I didn't make it to the theaters as much as I wanted to, my watch count managed to get up to a decent forty-one! I'd love to see if I can beat this total next year.

Thist list of Best and Favorite Films of 2015 is a hodge-podge of categories. It's really a mix of people, characters and movies that I fell in love with over the year. Some movies from the past few years were new to me, so they've been included alongside movies released this year too.

You might noticed that 'Worst' movies hasn't been mentioned yet. I'm considering put those in a separate list since this list is long enough.

There's not a lot of spoilers throughout this post except for the category Favorite Hero (Crimson Peak) and Best Supporting Actress (The Hateful Eight). Read at your own risk!

I hope you enjoy my personal picks of favorites and best of 2015! Hope you have a cinematastic 2016!

{ People }
Newest Crush: Michiel Huisman
Sweet moses - his character in The Age of Adaline is p-e-r-f-e-c-t. Intelligent, charming, and handsome as HELL. Naturally, a fangirly admiration of his character has carried onto the man himself - in the least creepiest way possible, of course. Knowing now that he is on Game of Thrones, I'll probably get sucked into watching the show, or at least his episodes.

photo: Ocean Drive
Rising Star: Zoe Kravitz
She's been an actress since 2007, but in the past few years Zoe's career has steadily gained bigger projects. This year she continued with the Divergent franchise as the heroine's best friend in Insurgent. I loved the movie, except that there wasn't enough of her character. She continued to storm out of the gate in Dope, and as one of Immortan Joes' wives from Mad Max: Fury Road. If she's given the opportunities like a lot of other actresses her age (*ahem*), I think her career will take off. She's definitely a rising star.

Man of the Summer
Coming off of the tv show Parks and Recreation, Chris Pratt became a Man of the Summer with the mega hit Jurassic World! There's probably a lot of moments that could be chosen here, but - this one where Bryce Dallas Howard and Chris Pratt interview each other cracks me up.

Someone Hot & Adorable With an Animal Other than Tom Hardy:
Henry Cavill adopting a bat

{ Favorites }

Actor's Description of their Movie:
Tom Hiddleston, Crimson Peak
That's it - That's Crimson Peak in a nutshell.

Attempt at a Cary Grant Accent
Henry Cavill, The Man From Uncle
Even if the whole tone and sound is unintentional, Henry's attempt at an American accent is so similar to another European native Cary Grant. It can't be denied there is a resemblance to the Classic Hollywood standard British-American accent most actors learned to perfect back then.

Henry Cavill & Armie Hammer, The Man From U.N.C.L.E.

Mr. Nice Guy,
I Mean, GOD He's So Nice It Hurts:
Chris Evans, Before You Go
Sweet Moses, Is This Body For Real, Yo?
Chris Evans as Steve Rogers

Ilsa & Ethan, Mission Impossible: Rogue Nation

Gabby & Illya / The Man From U.N.C.L.E.

Edith Cushing - Crimson Peak
Furiosa - Mad Max Fury Road
Ilsa - Mission Impossible: Rogue Nation
Tris Prior - Insurgent

Dr. Alan McMichael, Crimson Peak
Alan's not really a hero 'cause he shows up to "save" Edith & immediately gets knifed. He might've, probably loves her deeply, but his attempted rescue doesn't come off as an arrogant knight-in-shining armor. His brief monologue is so subtle; the way he accentuates his words and his protective nature. In the midst of all this insane family drama, he's amazing. Overall, Charlie Hunam as Alan was an expected delight. God, he lent so much sanity, even if it is short. If I were Edith, I'd go running straight to him in a heartbeat.

{ Movies }
Book to Movie Adaptation:

Romantic Comedy:
Love Rosie
If you'd like to read my full review, it's available here:

Favorite Blindspot:
Before Sunset
If you'd like to read my full review, it's available here.

Movie I Survived Because He's Hot:
The Age of Adaline

I'd MOST Love to See a Sequel to:
The Man from U.N.C.L.E.

Favorite Movies of 2015:
Crimson Peak, Insurgent, The Man From U.N.C.L.E., The Martian

{ Best }

 Best Extra: Mad Max: Fury Road stunt crew
A special shout-out goes to the flame-throwing guitarist who absolutely captivated all of us. But, all of the incredible stunt men and women of Mad Max deserve acknowledgement too.

Best Performance by a Supporting Actress: 
Jennifer Jason Leigh, The Hateful Eight
Runner Up: Laura Dern, Wild
The Hateful Eight is simply atrocious. There is nothing salvageable in Quentin Tarantino's latest film. Except for Jennifer Jason Leigh as Daisy Domergue.

Daisy is a prisoner set to be executed if John Ruth (Kurt Russell) can deliver her to Red Rock. He doesn't care if she's dead or alive. Stranded in the middle of nowhere inside a cabin with strangers, they have to wait until a deadly blizzard clears so they may finish their long trek. As is the Tarantino way - people start dropping like flies in the most brutal, bloody ways imaginable. 

This hellcat may be held captive and treated worse than livestock, but Daisy doesn't go down without a fight. Ruth and the other strangers call her a bitch more times than you can imagine. Every time she shows up Ruth with a glance or comment, he beats her. But in ruthless spirit, she laughs with glee in their faces. Even when he hits her, splitting open her mouth or nose, she spits her spilled blood back in his face. Domergue is absolutely fierce, tenacious, fearless, and raw in battling for her freedom. 

Leigh entirely holds her own against poor running gags, a weak script, and self-indulgent storytelling. She's absolutely incredible. She gives the type of performance that gave me chills. Daisy is someone who could've been easily played as helpless, or without ferocity, or bitter, or crazy. No, Daisy is sane, calculating, and doesn't have time for vengeful, idiotic men holding her back. You'll never seen anything like her - probably ever.

Best Supporting Actor: Theo James, Insurgent
In a future Chicago where people are separated into factions based on virtues, Tobias wants to be a little bit of everything; brave, smart, honest, kind, and selfless. One look at Tobias on the page, and Theo James as an actor, he could've become a victim of the macho tropes found in action/dystopian movies. There's no doubt he can kick someone's butt, but there's much more to him than his brawn. Like Shailene Woodley, who plays Tris with the same emotional and physical range, Theo knows how to pack a punch yet remain wonderfully vulnerable.  For an action series, he feels like a rare example of how a male character have a wide range of emotion, show off his physicality, and be a partner to the head bad-ass heroine in charge.

Best Actress: Charlize Theron, Mad Max: Fury Road
It's cliche to say but Charlize Theron as Furiosa is freaking primal. There is no one way, or maybe right way to explain how she explodes from the screen; her bravery and protectiveness to Immortan Joe's wives; her brute perseverance; her strife for redemption; her vulnerability. I've always liked Theron but she gives another level of ferocity that is incredible. Similar to Jennifer Jason Leigh, her and Theron came at you like a freight train. There's no stopping them; you've just got to hold on for dear life and then bow. 

Best Actor: Tom Hardy, Mad Max: Fury Road
Every year feels like a Tom Hardy year, but for 2015 he really captured everyone's attention. On top of his love of dogs as well as a simple yet awesome stand against sexism, he had an incredible year of movies - Legend, Mad Max: Fury Road, and The Revenant.

Like Theron for Mad Max: Fury Road, he gives a primal performance as Max, but there is a tremendous amount of vulnerability too. As the lead of the film, he doesn't have anything more than a dozen lines of dialogue. Every thing about him is pure physicality. He's like a wounded animal in the way moves and grunts; his looks are tainted with pain and hope in his struggle for redemption. This kind of character is very hard to pull off, and to see the way Tom transforms himself physically from a supervillain like Bane all beefed up with a distorted voice in The Dark Knight Rises, to this rugged yet silent creature of the desert is truly thrilling. Definitely one of his best roles.

Best Movie:
Runner Up: Mad Max: Fury Road
This is one of those "oldies" that I was talking about. Wild is from late 2014 but I didn't get to see it until earlier this year. Having read Cheryl Strayed's book last autumn, I was so excited for the adaptation - which met all of my expectations and then some. My review could probably put into more words of how much I love it than I could do it again here - but it's just an amazing film, one that I've watched I don't even know how many times.

For 2015 movies, Mad Max: Fury Road wins hands-down. Nothing has come close to surpassing the direction with its impeccable pacing and special affects, the storytelling of women breaking free, the transformation of distrust to camaraderie and respect, and the acting by Charlize Theron as well as Tom Hardy and the ensemble. It was one of the wildest rides to ever take in cinema.


  1. HI Katy! I love your list. I am working on mine, which includes the best & the worst. I don't know if I will have time for graphics for the worst. Are the worst movies of the year even worth the effort...I ask myself? Geez...if only people understood how long these list take, especially with graphics and gifs. Nice work on this one. I haven't seen 'Hateful Eight,' but I'm glad to know it would not have made my best list anyway. Tarantino is hit and miss for me.

  2. Excellent post! I'm so glad that you liked Crimson Peak too! I also can't wait to see Hateful Eight now based on you giving JJL best supporting actress nod! And all the love for Fury Road goes without saying...the shit is awesome.

  3. There's so many hot men in this post. lol I like that you singled out Charlie Hunam, that was the only time I've ever found him attractive was in Crimson Peak. Great list!

  4. Hi, Mariah! Thank you so much! I totally know what you mean about worst movies. Most of the films I watched and didn't like, I didn't even review. They just end being forgettable. Tarantino is a hit and miss for me too. I think I liked was Death Proof the most, and that's probably his most hated work by fans. lol

  5. Thank you so much! I hope you like especially for Jennifer Jason Leigh. She blew me away! Nothing comes in the vicinity of awesome against Fury Road. :D

  6. Thank you Brittani! I didn't notice that at first but YES there is. lol OMG, I can't even get started on Charlie/Alan - love him so much.

  7. I love the amount of love for The Man From UNLCE here - such an underrated gem from last year. Great post Katy :)

  8. Thank you! Omg, it's such a fun movie. I totally agree - it was really underrated and probably one of Guy Ritchies' best. :)