How do you know if a movie is a good movie? Do you have standards and guidelines to know whether one is a masterpiece or a mediocre movie? Some people who have studied and mastered filmmaking, critiquing a movie has become their source of income and they have my utmost respect. But for an ordinary person, like myself, the greatness of a movie is subjective. It really depends on one’s standard and taste.
2015 has been a great year for movies. It has offered a diversity of movies from science fiction to mega-blockbuster superhero movies to thought provoking indie movies to feel good films to action-packed films. Indeed, 2015 has brought an extraordinary movie experience.
What makes a movie a good one for me? It could be a movie that entertains me, one that can moved me, one that can make me think, one that would leave a lasting impression that after I leave the movie house I still talk about it, one that doesn’t insult my intelligence and one that I would watch over and over again. So, here’s my own list, albeit already late, of the top movies, or should I say Top 10 of my most favorite movies of 2015.
The tandem of Melissa McCarthy and Paul Feig has proven time again to be effective and perfect in terms of guaranteed laughs and box-office gross. This time they were joined by non-comedic actors but proved to be efficient in comedy such as Jason Statham, Jude Law and Rosy Byrne. The story tells of a CIA analyst who volunteers to infiltrate a dangerous world of illegal arms dealing. If you are looking for a movie that would give non-stop laughs and action scenes, then this one is for you.
1950s setting, girl meets boy, retro dresses, sounds like a chick-flick, no? Well, this movie starring Saoirse Ronan is anything but a chick-flick movie. She plays an Irish immigrant in 1950s Brooklyn, who’s finding her way to fits in and adjust to the new life she has for her future and her family. This is the kind of movie I won’t usually enjoy, but the issue about immigrants and their everyday struggle hits right home to me. A very simple movie, yet very profound. Ronan is also an actress to watch out for, her subtle performance in the movie makes it all more compelling.
This is no different to other superhero movies that are meant for the whole family. The movie doesn’t pretend to be deep, it only wanted to entertain and it succeeded. Scott Lang aka the Ant-Man is the tiny superhero with enormous wit, power and sense of humor. Marvel has successfully added another superhero in its long roster of superheroes to appear on the big screen and we couldn’t wait for Ant-man to start crawling again on screen.
7. Mad Max: Fury Road
Okay, it may be shameful to admit it, but I didn’t have any recollection of the original Mad Max starring Mel Gibson. I might’ve seen it on HBO but didn’t pay too much attention to. If the original Mad Max is better or is as good as Fury Road, then I better run at the nearest video shop to rent it, because Fury Road was visually stunning and breathtaking. Charlize Theron, ‘nuff said.
This movie is based on how the Boston Globe uncovered the scandal involving priests molesting innocent children and the cover-up made by the local church. This is a very controversial movie that had shaken the foundation of the whole Catholic Church. The movie was over-all engrossing, thrilling and captivating.
5. The Revenant
Set in 1820s and based on the true story of Hugh Glass, a frontiersman left for dead by his group after a gruesome bear attack then survived and seek revenge. After the highly-acclaimed 2014 movie, Birdman, Alejandro Gonzales Inarritu is back with another enthralling movie teaming him up with the man of the hour, Leonardo DiCaprio. Leo is considered to be one of the last few movie stars that can command movie audiences to watch his movie, for his presence alone. And his magnificent performance in this movie is being predicted to finally give him that elusive Oscar and nobody is complaining.
4. Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation
Say what you will about Tom Cruise, his crazy antics, Scientology and such, but no one can contest that he is one fine actor. He has a very varied filmography that every new movie star should try to emulate and the newest installment of Mission Impossible is definitely a part of that. On the newest installment, Ethan Hunt is back, along with his team to fight and eradicate the Syndicate, a rogue organization dedicated to destroy the IMF. This is to me, the best Mission: Impossible movie, the stunts, Rebecca Ferguson and other cast, the story, the motorcycle chase, the non-stop action, and of course, Tom Cruise made the movie deserving of repetitive viewing.
3. Inside Out
I haven’t moved on from the feels brought by Toy Story 3, and yet Pixar has brought another one and summoned the onion ninjas again, in their second to the latest offering, Inside out. The premise of the story is unique and very smart, we were brought inside the mind of a 11-year old girl who’s dealing and adjusting into the new place she was obliged to live in through her 5 core emotions – Joy, Fear, Anger, Sadness, and Disgust. The movie is for kids that adults will surely love. Pixar, you did right, again!
2. The Martian
Mark Watney played by Matt Damon was part of the manned mission to Mars that was presumed dead after a ferocious storm and was left behind by the group. Surviving the storm, he is now facing to survive the life in Mars. He would have to cultivate his own plants and food to sustain, he would have to face any adversity an alien planet brings and he would have to make a plan on how to successfully return to Earth. How he does all of it was at times emotional, funny and inspiring. Wonderful film!
1. Star Wars: The Force Awakens
This was my most highly anticipated film not only of 2015 but of many years, and I’ve been counting days from the moment it was announced ‘till the showing date. I went to watch the movie praying for it to be better than the prequels, because I know it would be hard to top the original trilogies, and boy, oh boy, it didn’t disappoint. Without any bias, I would have to say that this is the best movie of 2015. We’ve seen familiar faces and we were glad to see them, we were introduced to new characters and we gladly embraced them and of course, the theme, music, the soundtrack, take us all back down the memory lane. And this is only the beginning of the new Star Wars era, because every year we will be treated with at least one movie from a galaxy far far away.