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Best films of 2018: More lists! POST

Best films of 2018: More lists!

First Reformed made more than half of the nine individual lists below, and unsurprisingly topped the year’s best films according to the Arts & Faith Ecumenical Jury … What’s more surprising — anyway I’m a little surprised, and delighted — is that another film was even more esteemed in this little community … and it wasn’t any of the films I would have expected.

Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse [video] POST

Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse [video] (2018)

Chris Miller and Phil Lord, Chris Miller and Phil Lord / Do whatever Chris Miller and Phil Lord do.
Can they swing from a thread? / No they can’t, they’re Hollywood filmmakers.

Mary Poppins Returns [video] POST

Mary Poppins Returns [video] (2018)

And so does Dick Van Dyke — but if you want the return of Julie Andrews, the movie to see is Aquaman.

Ralph Breaks the Internet [video] POST

Ralph Breaks the Internet [video] (2018)

Ralph doesn’t just break the Internet — he breaks the mold for Disney/Pixar sequels.

The Rider [video] POST

The Rider [video] (2018)

The lead actor in this film told me he feels much closer to God in the South Dakota Badlands than in New York or Paris. There were more theologically explicit films this year, but none that brought God closer to me.

Widows [video] POST

Widows [video] (2018)

There’s a lot to appreciate about this film from director Steve McQueen and Viola Davis, except the moral universe the film asks us to inhabit for a couple of hours.

Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald [video] POST

Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald [video] (2018)

I swear I am not making any of this up. What else can I say?

The Hate U Give [video] POST

The Hate U Give [video] (2018)

If a parent having The Talk with their kids to you means the birds and the bees, you ought to watch this movie.

The Darkest Minds [video] POST

The Darkest Minds [video] (2018)

The Hunger Games’ Rue is now Ruby: Amandla Stenberg takes the spotlight in another YA dystopia that runs its race, but doesn’t diverge enough from its peers to leave anyone hungry for whatever comes next.

Teen Titans Go! To the Movies [video] POST

Teen Titans Go! To the Movies [video] (2018)

The superhero movie to end all superhero movies? Or every superhero movie at once?

Hotel Transylvania 3: Summer Vacation [video] POST

Hotel Transylvania 3: Summer Vacation [video] (2018)

Clearly I am not a vampire. As you can see here, I’ve changed quite a bit in the last six years … not necessarily in my opinion of this franchise.

Incredibles 2 [video] POST

Incredibles 2 [video] (2018)

I dared to hope this one would be more than merely good. I was afraid it would be less than good.

Ant-Man and the Wasp [video] POST

Ant-Man and the Wasp [video] (2018)

No infinity. No war. (Almost.) Why can’t more Marvel movies be like this?

Tully [video] POST

Tully [video] (2018)

A messy, thought-provoking film about motherhood from the makers of Juno and Young Adult? Go figure.

Pope Francis: A Man of His Word [video] POST

Pope Francis: A Man of His Word [video] (2018)

The year’s second-best inspirational documentary about an iconic leader with an ability to connect with people as individuals is still pretty good.

A Quiet Place [video] POST

A Quiet Place [video] (2018)

It’s funny to think of people scratching their heads when this “quiet” film is justly nominated for sound editing and sound mixing Oscars.

Rampage [video] POST

Rampage [video] (2018)

Dwayne Johnson and giant animals. How much more do you need? Well, since you asked … maybe a little?

Best films of 2017: More lists! POST

Best films of 2017: More lists!

It’s hard to pick clear favorites from the latest roundup of the last year’s best films according to my circle of Christian friends and peers.

Phantom Thread [video] POST

Phantom Thread [video] (2017)

There is a certain fascination in how fascinated Paul Thomas Anderson and Daniel Day-Lewis are in material that is not fascinating.

The Shape of Water [video] POST

The Shape of Water [video] (2017)

Not the year’s better film starring Sally Hawkins as a handicapped dreamer with an inarticulate, seemingly almost subhuman lover.