Welcome back to the Best of 2015 for the last time! Today we will be wrapping up our last list of the series by looking at the best films that 2015 had to offer!
Now there are a few disclaimers with this list. Firstly I was unable to watch all the films I intended to due to time constraints, so for those people looking for The Revenant, Ex Machina, Creed, The Martian or Straight Outta Compton will need to look elsewhere as I was unable to watch them before flying out to Germany.
Secondly, this list is my opinion and my opinion alone, If you disagree with me then feel free to shoot off a comment with your top ten!
10. Star Wars Episode VII – The Force Awakens
Arguably the most hyped film of all time, the long awaited return to the Star Wars universe mostly payed off. An exciting film from start to finish, this was a fan’s dream, with plenty of callbacks (which was a little bit of the issue) and enough action and set up to keep fans invested in the series and even more excited for the next two films. We only hope that the next two stray more from the remake skeleton that Episode VII followed.
9. Mad Max: Fury Road
With 10 Oscar nominations, this Australian movie has been hailed as one of the best of the year with its loving return to the world of Mad Max by George Miller. With heaps of action to keep your heart racing throughout and a story that is simple yet deceptively in depth, Mad Max is one of the best action films in years and a great return to form for Australian cinema.
8. Bridge Of Spies
This Tom Hanks led Cold War film had all the hallmarks to become an instant favorite of mine and while it didn’t quite reach the marks intended, Bridge Of Spies was still a fantastic film, filled with twists and turns and interesting characters. With wonderful set pieces and enough tension to keep you engrossed in the story, this film provided a unique look on the legal efforts of Americans during the Cold War and as a result was one of the standout films of the year.
7. Steve Jobs
Not knowing much about Steve Jobs going into this Aaron Sorkin penned film, I finished it feeling as if I knew way more than I needed to know about the Apple head. While not entirely true to the actual accounts of Jobs, the film was built around the amazing performance of Michael Fassbender in the titular role and we got a interesting look at the career of Jobs all while locking the film around the traditional three act story, where each act took on a product launch that was major to Jobs’ career.
6. The Big Short
I was not expecting to enjoy this as much as I did. This Adam McKay dramedy about the late 2000’s financial crisis was surprising engrossing from start to finish, with rather simple and well done explanations of important financial terms plus enough comedy to keep you above water. With fantastic acting from Steve Carell and Ryan Gosling, the movie excelled at showing just how the world went to shit so quickly and making us hate exactly who was at fault for the entire thing.
5. The Hateful Eight
While I am not a massive fan of Quentin Tarantino as some others, I do admire his work and The Hateful Eight was a fantastic movie from start to finish. Despite it’s predictability, the movie was a well crafted mystery and with amazing acting and stock standard Tarantino charm, the movie was great fun to watch. With the return of the Roadshow format in select theaters, Tarantino brought back the ways of the past, and this movie worked so much better as a result of it.
4. Going Clear – Scientology And The Prison Of Belief
This HBO Documentary gained significant notoriety earlier in 2015 for it’s criticism of Scientology and this film was not only a well put together documentary but also a very interesting look into the history of Scientology and some of the supposed things the higher up members have done to keep the church running. It is one of those films that people should be watching if not for curiosity over anything else, as it does well to clear up a lot of misconceptions people have about the cores of the religion.
3. Inside Out
Pixar returned to top form in 2015 with this Amy Poehler led film as it mixed both comedy and emotions so well that it was almost impossible not to relate to in some form. A great look at depression and dealing with change, Inside Out was an imaginative look at something insanely complex and it payed off. With memorable characters and great gags throughout the film, Inside Out was a unique experience in a rather emotional year for movies.
Charlie Kaufman has done it again with this animated feature about finding connections with other people. With a small cast and very few sets, the movie was all about the dialogue and the acting, and Anomalisa nailed it across the board. A movie that was insanely relatable yet not relatable at all at the same time, the film was a watch that left me wondering what I had just experienced and why it effected me so darn much.
1. The Peanuts Movie
2015 was a fantastic year for animated films and the crowning achievement of them all was the long awaited return of Charlie Brown to the big screen. I will admit that this selection has a little bit of bias as Peanuts is one of my all time favorite media franchises but The Peanuts Movie was a loving tribute to the classic comic strip, with dialogue ripped straight from the comics and the soundtrack sounding straight out of A Charlie Brown Christmas. This film was the equivalent of a warm hug from someone you love; familiar yet engaging and enjoyable all on its own right.
Agree? Disagree? Sound off in the comments and let me know your top films of 2015!