2016 was a fantastic year filled with the most amazing movies, and we sure had a heck of a time narrowing it down to 10. You had fantasies fulfilled with the likes of Batman v Superman, Deadpool, Hugh Jackman returning for X-Men, seeing Darth Vader on screen one more time, and many more little moments that made super hero. comic book and pop culture fans cheer. But, lest we forget, that not all movies were “superhero” related, we had some real gems in the form of more traditional movies.
Top 10 movies of 2016, that are a must watch.
Directors: Byron Howard, Rich Moore, Jared Bush
Starring: Jason Bateman, Ginnifer Goodwin
Zootopia is one of those rare animated movies that resonated across all ages. It not just a cute animals movie – humor, the underlying message, the animation and the overall production values, really make this stand out. If you haven’t seen Zootopia yet – make sure do you in 2017.
Director: Denzel Washington
Starring: Denzel Washington, Viola Davis, Jovan Adepo
The movie is based on the Pulitzer Prize-winning play, “Fences”, and brings together Denzel Washington and Viola Davis, to wrap up what can only be defined as, Amazing! The movie revolves around racial and generational divide in American life and the complexity of family and forgiveness are more than enough to have to glued to your seat.
#8. Hacksaw Ridge
Director: Mel Gibson
Starring: Andrew Garfield, Teresa Palmer, Vince Vaughn
If war movies are your thing, then you’ll find a great one here with “Hacksaw Ridge”. Probably, the best movie since “Saving Private Ryan”. Andrew Garfield churns out an impressive performance, and under the direction of Mel Gibson, the autobiography of Desmond Doss, a pacifist combat medic and Medal of Honor recipient, comes to live in the most vivid way.
#7. Hell or High Water
Director: David Mackenzie
Starring: Chris Pine, Ben Foster, Jeff Bridges
This is a western film. But not your stereotypical one. David Mackenzie, has tweaked this just enough to break the 90’s western mold and deliver a movie that probably creates a new genre in itself. Chris Pine, Ben Foster and Jeff Bridges, bring strong performances to the table like never before. If there’s only 1 movie on this list you can watch…we’d highly recommend this.
#6. La La Land
Director: Damien Chazelle
Starring: Ryan Gosling, Emma Stone, John Legend
Be sure to carry lots of tissues with you, because La La Land takes you on a grand tour of nostalgia and schmaltz of classic musicals and films from Hollywood’s Golden Age — and delivers with aplomb and style. With an amazing musical score and story line, the movie will leave you in tears. Wit, humor, comedy, heart break and dreams, all come together in this amazing production.
#5. The Nice Guys
Director: Shane Black
Starring: Russell Crowe, Ryan Gosling
You will either agree with this placement of “Nice Guys” so high on the list or completely stop reading after this – either way, Shane Black, who has been making some good movies, which we’re financially successful, probably should have gotten the break he deserves with this movie. While the whole buddy cop role was not well received overall, we thought the movie was great and certainly deserves to be up here.
Director: Denis Villeneuve
Starring: Amy Adams, Jeremy Renner, Forest Whitaker
The dark tone of Denis Villeneuve’s previous movies did us in for this one, but we loved how well it was done and a thrilling space, thiller, for lack of a better word. “Arrival” is simply, Amazing! The psychological science fiction film set in a not entirely alien future, where science finds its limitations while humanity seeks answers about its place in the universe. Simultaneously thought-provoking and poignant, “Arrival” challenges viewers to ponder existential questions about love, life and loss while providing satisfying, sophisticated possible answers.
#3. The Edge of Seventeen
Director: Kelly Fremon Craig
Starring: Hailee Steinfeld, Woody Harrelson, Kyra Sedgwick
It has Woody Harrelson’s dark humor and deadpan expressions, what more do you need? Add to that Hailee Steinfeld, and the never ending struggle of adolescence, and the drama of growing up and finding out who you are. The leads deliver outstanding performances, which are only bolstered by sincere, hilarious writing.
Director: Barry Jenkins
Starring: Mahershala Ali, Naomie Harris, Janelle Monáe
You can call this a coming of age movie, but it wouldn’t be entirely right. Then again, “Moonlight”, resonates so strongly with folks across all age groups, that probably the right way to describe it would be a – compassionate portrayal of humanity and the different way humans can treat one another. Do not miss “Moonlight”, if you haven’t already seen it. If you’ve seen it, give it another watch.
#1. Manchester by the Sea
Director: Kenneth Lonergan
Starring: Casey Affleck, Michelle Williams, Kyle Chandler
In a drama about family, insecurity and loss, writer-director Kenneth Lonergan avoids affectations or cloying melodrama and provides well-written characters and a realistic, moving story.Kenneth Lonergan’s film is appropriately brutal and uncomfortable and unflinching in its portrait of crippling tragedy, it is transcendent because it recognizes that the passage of time breeds comedy. The gallows humor in Manchester by the Sea is as effective, and as important, as the gut-punching sorrow, a perfect reflection of how we protect ourselves with the mundane and the ridiculous lest we totally fall apart. There are no easy answers here, no promises that everything will be okay – the grieving uncle and nephew played so magnificently by Casey Affleck and Lucas Hedges have a long, hard road ahead of them. There will be tears. There will be pain. But there will be plenty of fond memories and even a chuckle or two.
Do you agree with our list of top 10 movies of 2016? What’s on yours? Leave us a comment and share what your top 10 movies of 2016 looks like!