My pick for TOP TEN Films for 2019 and my look back at the Decade of Films

December 30, 2019

The list was not easy to limit to Ten pictures - But here is my top Ten for best films for 2019 -- Including some runner up favorites,

it was sad to see less female Directors

that I hope make the nominations list at the Oscars and other film fest events.

Scroll down and see my picks for best films of the DECADE

2010 - 2019

The Best film of 2019 - PARASITE

Directed by Bong Joon Ho. He brings his work home to Korea in this black modern fairytale. The Park Family: the picture of aspirational wealth. And the Kim Family, rich in street smarts but not much else. These two families are brought together and the Kims sense a golden opportunity. When a parasitic interloper threatens the Kims' newfound comfort, a savage, underhanded battle for dominance breaks out, threatening to destroy the fragile ecosystem between the Kims and the Parks.

Number 2 pick for best Film - JO JO RABBIT

Writer director Taika Waititi (THOR: RAGNAROK, WHAT WE DO IN THE SHADOWS, HUNT FOR THE WILDERPEOPLE), brings his signature style of humor and pathos to his latest film, JOJO RABBIT, a World War II satire that follows a lonely German boy (Roman Griffin Davis as JoJo) whose world view is turned upside down when he discovers his single mother (Scarlett Johansson) is hiding a young Jewish girl (Thomasin McKenzie) in their attic. Aided only by his idiotic imaginary friend, Adolf Hitler (Taika Waititi), Jojo must confront his blind nationalism.

Number 3 -  THE FAREWELL

Directed By:Lulu Wang. The film follows a Chinese family who, when they discover their beloved Grandmother has only a short while left to live, decide to keep her in the dark and schedule an impromptu wedding to gather before she passes. Billi, feeling like a fish out of water in her home country, struggles with the family's decision to hide the truth from her grandmother.

Number 4  LITTLE WOMEN 2019

Writer-director Greta Gerwig (Lady Bird) has crafted a Little Women that draws on both the classic novel and the writings of Louisa May Alcott, and unfolds as the author's alter ego, Jo March, reflects back and forth on her fictional life. In Gerwig's take, the beloved story of the March sisters - four young women each determined to live life on her own terms -- is both timeless and timely. Portraying Jo, Meg, Amy, and Beth March, the film stars Saoirse Ronan, Emma Watson, Florence Pugh, Eliza Scanlen, with Timothée Chalamet as their neighbor Laurie, Laura Dern as Marmee, and Meryl Streep as Aunt March.

Number 5 film MARRIAGE STORY

Directed by Noah Baumbach. Nicole has given up a promising movie career to devote herself to Charlie and his work in New York, and he feels betrayed when she, having taken a starring role in a pilot and put their son in school in LA, wants to stay on the West Coast, as he’d always promised they might. She lawyers up, hiring a pit bull attorney delectably played by Laura Dern.The Surprising Maturity of Marriage Story. Noah Baumbach’s film portrays both sides of a messy divorce, for once.

Number 6  - 1917 Directed by Sam Mendes

At the height of the First World War, two young British soldiers, Schofield (Captain Fantastic's George MacKay) and Blake (Game of Thrones' Dean-Charles Chapman) are given a seemingly impossible mission. In a race against time, they must cross enemy territory and deliver a message that will stop a deadly attack on hundreds of soldiers--Blake's own brother among them. Shot with one camera no editing - it is like a live action one shot play. 

Number 7 - BIRDS OF PASSAGE

DIRECTED BY Cristina Gallego & Ciro Guerra

From the Oscar (R)-nominated team behind the genre-defying Embrace of the Serpent, a saga centered on the Wayúu indigenous people during a crucial period in recent Colombian history. Torn between his desire to become a powerful man and his duty to uphold his culture's values, Rapayet (José Acosta) enters the drug trafficking business in the 1970s and finds quick success despite his tribe's matriarch Ursula's (Carmiña Martínez) disapproval. Birds of Passage is a visually striking exploration of loyalty, greed, and the voracious nature of change.

Number 8 - JOKER Directed By: Todd Phillips

The film centers around the iconic arch nemesis and is an original, standalone fictional story not seen before on the big screen. The Joker portrayed by Joaquin Phoenix, is of a man struggling to find his way in Gotham. A clown-for-hire by day, he aspires to be a stand-up comic at night...but finds the joke always seems to be on him. Caught in a cyclical existence between apathy and cruelty, Arthur makes one bad decision that brings about a chain reaction of escalating events in this gritty character study.

Number 9 - HONEY BOY Directed By: Alma Har'el

From a screenplay by Shia LaBeouf, based on his own experiences, award-winning filmmaker Alma Har'el brings to life a young actor's stormy childhood and early adult years as he struggles to reconcile with his father through cinema and dreams. LaBeouf takes on the daring and therapeutic challenge of playing a version of his own father, an ex-rodeo clown and a felon. Har'el's feature narrative debut is a one-of-a-kind collaboration between filmmaker and subject, exploring art as therapy and imagination as hope.

Number 10 - LES MISERABLES  Directed by Ladj Ly  

Inspired by the 2005 riots in Paris, LES MISÉRABLES – – follows Stéphane (Damien Bonnard), a recent transplant to the impoverished suburb of Montfermeil, as he joins the local anti-crime squad. Working alongside his unscrupulous colleagues Chris (Alexis Manenti) and Gwada (Djebril Zonga), Stéphane struggles to maintain order amidst the mounting tensions between local gangs. When an arrest turns unexpectedly violent, the three officers must reckon with the aftermath and keep the neighborhood from spiraling out of control. 

Other Films to shoutout for 2019

THE LAST BLACKMAN IN SAN FRANCISCO, PAIN AND GLORY, ONCE UPON A TIME IN HOLLYWOOD. THE IRSHMAN, BOOKSMART, THE LIGHTHOUSE, HUSTLERS, DOLEMITE IS MY NAME. THE KING, TWO POPES  

 

MY PICK FOR TOP FILMS OF THE DECADE - 2010 TO 2019

 

 

Over the past 10 years, thousands of films have hit cinema screens. Looking back over the past decade, it’s easy to recall the few that left indelible marks. The ones that caused film fans to leave the theater heartbroken, thinking or mind-blown. This is not a genre film group, there are probably more indi films on my list than sci-fi, and comic-book movies. I also listed other films that were important the past 10 years.

 

 

 

 

1) MOONLIGHT

 2) BIRDMAN

 3) INCEPTION

 

 4) THE SOCIAL NETWORK

 5) PARASITE

 6) MADMAX

7) CALL ME BY YOUR NAME

 8) BOYHOOD

 9) ROMA

 

 10) BLACK PANTHER

 OTHER DECADE FILMS TO REMEMBER

THE ROOM, LADY BIRD, CRAZY RICH ASIANS, Inside Llewyn Davis, BEASTS OF THE SOUTHERN WILD, WAR HORSE, BLACK SWAN, Brooklyn, WHIPLASH, American Sniper, 12 YEARS A SLAVE, SING STREET, BROOKLYN, MOONRISE KINGDOM, GRAVITY, ROOM, LA LA LAND, DUNKIRK

 

 

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December 30, 2019

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