TOP 10 FILMS OF 2015

HOLLYWOOD – The Studio Exec has put together a list of the top films of 2015, in no particular order.

2015 was an odd year for film. A bit underwhelming until December it has to be said. The blockbusters busted blocks but the most successful (until December) was the M’eh-fest of Jurassic World. Everything looked very familiar. There was an Avengers movie (I think) and a new Bond film. The two main European festivals saw the main prize picked up by average movies that won’t escape the festival circuit. Of course, December suddenly gave us a year’s worth of interesting stuff. What am I talking about? Jesus, why am I even writing this? I’m hungover and tired and it is now time I went to bed so here’s the Goddamned list:

Bone Tomahawk

Gruesome and beautiful western, both elegiac and horrific, starring Matthew Fox, Kurt Russell, Patrick Wilson and Richard Jenkins. It will certainly divide audiences, if not bifurcate them. Here’s the review.

Mad Max: Fury Road

A remake that if anything exceeded its original source material. George Miller brought his post-apocalyptic car chase into the territory of the purest genre cinema. Witty, exciting, incredible. Here’s the review.

Son of Saul

Devastating portrayal of the life in the day of a Sonderkommando in Auschwitz. A film I never want to see again, but everyone should see once. Review here. 

The Revenant

Leonardo diCaprio crawls through hell to get to an Oscar. On the way he features in one of the most beautiful and stunningly immersive cinematic experiences of the year. For the review click here. 

Star Wars: The Force Awakens

It wasn’t shit. Click here for the review.

Crimson Peak

Guillermo Del Toro goes full on Gothic with Tom Hiddleston, Mia Wasikowska and Jessica Chastain in a Roger Corman/ Stanley Kubrick inspired visual treat. Review here.

Anomalisa 

Charlie Kaufman and Duke Johnson’s stop animation tale of angst should have won at Venice. I’ll write a review some time soon.

Sicario

Made me want to see Blade Runner 2. Or at least made me not be too scared about it. Review here. 

Call Me Lucky

There have been some great documentaries this year and Call Me Lucky by Bobcat Goldthwait was one of the best. Charting the life of comedian Barry Crimmins this was a portrait of an unsung American hero, read the review here.

So Happy New Year and all that jazz. Let’s hope 2016 brings us some movies that’ll light our collective fires.

For more Reviews, CLICK HERE.

BONE TOMAHAWK – REVIEW

BONE TOMAHAWK – REVIEW: Kurt Russell, Richard Jenkins and Patrick Wilson star in Horror slash Western, a brutal, bloody but also beautiful and eloquent genre mash up which hacks into my 2015 top ten.

S. Craig Zahler’s debut movie Bone Tomahawk is a whip smart horror western that could slap most genre pretenders red. True, it’s not as if there are a huge pile of horror-westerns – Soldier Blue was brutal and A Man Called Horse introduced body horror into the genre – but even Django Unchained clumsy mess didn’t have a fraction of the affection or originality of this.

When two robbers stray into an Indian burial ground they unleash the ire of a clan of cannibalistic, feral Native Americans. One of the robbers flees to a frontier town where he is jailed by local sheriff Franklin Hunt (Russell). When the clan attack the village, they kidnap a deputy and the wife (Lili Simmons) of Arthur O’Dwyer (Wilson), who is laid up in bed with a broken leg. Hunt leads a posse that includes old geezer Chicory (Jenkins) and Indian Killer and Dude John Brooder (Matthew Fox). Hampered by O’Dyer’s leg and prone to infighting and the attentions of Mexican bandits, Hunt’s Posse takes their sweet time approaching the clan’s caves. But when they do, they might wish they had dawdled a little longer on the way.

Zahler writes the best old West dialogue since Larry McMurty’s Lonesome Dove and he films the landscape with the same appreciation for the land and the failing light as a John Ford. There’s a genuine affection for the genre – for both genres – and the brilliant cast and Matthew Fox play it seriously, witty, but damned serious. They feel real and there is an affection for them that makes you want the time spent with them to go on. This isn’t a playful postmodern take. And likewise when things start to get bloody, and they get ghastly, Zahler takes that gross out mayhem just as seriously.  Bone Tomahawk is the most original Western for years and cracking fun. Kurt Russell has another Western coming out on Christmas Day and if Hateful Eight is even half as good as this it will make for a remarkable year for the Western.

For more Reviews, Click Here.