Usually I do a wrap up of all the movies I watched during the summer, but this year I am doing a top 10 of the Summer. That is because this summer, thanks to MoviePass, I saw more than 20 films in theaters. It was a top heavy summer, so there are several movies I quite liked that didn’t make the top 10, a big change from years where I listed everything thing I saw and ran out of good movies by number four or five on the list. So just because a movie is not on the list doesn’t mean I didn’t like it. (I’m talking about Solo) I will call out three movies I saw this summer that I would call bad. The first is Sicario: Day of the Soldado, which was disappointing from a craft perspective, as it really wasn’t a good thriller, and also kind of gross in its politics. The next is Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom, a movie the further I get away from it the less I like it and I wasn’t a huge fan to begin with. And finally there is Skyscraper, which squandered so much potential and ended up being a cut rate Die Hard knock off. To the List:
10 – 3 Identical Strangers/Won’t You Be My Neighbor – I can’t really separate these two documentaries for the last spot. I thought about leaving them both off, and giving the slot to the next film down (Solo), but these two really were some of the better movies I saw. They are both just really good.
9 – Hotel Artemis – This movie didn’t quite capture me like I’d hoped it would, but that doesn’t mean I didn’t greatly enjoy it. I think it needed something more explosive in the final act to really put it over the top and I don’t think it quite got there. Still, I enjoyed every second of it, even if it left me wanting more in a somewhat bad way.
8 – Ant-Man and the Wasp – Delightful and forgettable. I really enjoyed this while watching it, but it didn’t really stick with me at all. That is mostly par for the course with Marvel movies. I am finding fewer and fewer reasons to return to this movies. Still, there is something to be said for nearly perfectly executed popcorn entertainment.
7 – Ocean’s 8 – Me feeling are pretty much the same as for Ant-Man above. This was fun and empty, just like a good summer movie should be. I hope it did well enough to get a sequel, because while I am a sucker for heists, this really could have done with fleshing out its cast a little more.
6 – Avengers Infinity War – I can see where a lot of the complaints about this movie come from, as it is a sequel to at the very least 3 separate movies and it doesn’t do much to ease viewers in and it does kind of feel like half a story. That said, there is something amazing about how it well it works despite breaking all the rules, like how it is almost all high tension, with little down time to build. Not it is five or so mini-movies strapped together. It feels big. It perfectly translates the comic crossover to the screen, warts and all.
5 – BlacKkKlansman – This movie, as well as my number 1 and number 2, are not really what I am usually looking for in my summer movies. I thought about leaving them off the list and just focusing on the blockbusters, but these made up a significant portion of what I really enjoyed this summer, so they stayed. This is a little shaggy and messy, but it is also really thoughtful and engrossing. It is really good.
4 – The Incredibles 2 – I am on record as loving The Incredibles. While I am the tiniest smidge disappointed that the sequel is mostly just the same movie again, with the roles of the parents switched, I can’t say that I didn’t love this movie. It is great, if lacking a little of the spark of the original.
3 – Mission Impossible: Fallout – I am not prepared to call this the best movie in the series, it was the best blockbuster of the summer. Cruise and company have found a perfect niche and are mining it expertly. I hope they have at least one more in them.
2 – Blindspotting – This underseen drama is very, very good. It feels a little stagey at times, but it also presents some very compelling characters and the single tensest scene I’ve seen in a movie in years.
1 – Sorry To Bother You – This is probably my favorite movie of the year so far. It is a wild satire of the current state of our capitalist system. While it is a movie with a message, that doesn’t stop it from being incredibly funny and constantly surprising. I loved every second of it.