THE MOVIES I MOST ENJOYED IN 2017

I don’t know if these were the “best” movies last year.  They certainly weren’t the most popular.  Nevertheless, here are the Silver Screens I enjoyed the most last year.

In case you missed a few from 2016, here’s my list from last year.  You can probably still catch them on Netflix.

  • Hell or High Water
  • Yo Yo Ma and the Silk Road Ensemble
  • The Beatles: Eight Days a Week
  • Fences
  • Scully
  • Manchester by the Sea
  • Café Society
  • Hidden Figures

Now back to 2017.  Box office sales were down almost 5%.

Norman – The moderate rise and tragic fall of a New York fixer.  Richard Gere is outstanding in this somewhat quirky flick about a somewhat quirky guy who seems to suddenly start to work hard at trying to be helpful to everyone around him.

Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri – A somewhat dankly comic drama about a mother frustrated with the lack of progress in finding her daughter’s murderer.  Frances McDormand is outstanding with her controversial billboard message to Chief of Police Woody Harrelson and it all leads to some unexpected battles.

Darkest Hour – Early in WWII with France about to fall, Britain faces its darkest hour as the threat of invasion looms and allied armies are cornered on the beaches of Dunkirk, the fate of Western Europe hangs on the leadership of newly appointed British Prime Minister Winston Churchill (Gary Oldham in an Oscar performance has to maneuver his political rivals and confront the choice of negotiating with Hitler or rally the nation to hold fast.

Marshall – The interesting early trial in the career of future Supreme Court Justice Thurgood Marshall.  Muzzled by a biased court, Marshall partners with an inexperienced Jewish lawyer to defend a chauffeur accused of sexual assault.

Phantom Thread – About a fussy and dictatorial dress designer (Daniel Day Lewis) whose habit of consuming and discarding fashion models is reversed when he becomes involved with a woman (Vicky Krieps) who matches his drive, his talent, and perhaps his need for control.

Rebel in the Rye – An interesting story about the reclusive J.D. Salinger famed author of Catcher in the Rye, who suffered PTSD as an intelligence officer in the Army in WWII and now writes only for himself.

Stronger – Starring Jake Gyllenhaal is the inspiring real life story of Jeff Bauman, an ordinary guy who captured the hearts of the city and the world to become a symbol of hope after surviving the Boston Marathon terrorist bombing.

The Big Sick – The enduring idea of America as a melting pot is most welcome.  In this romantic comedy, a devout Muslim Pakistani immigrant who falls for a white woman.  Led by love into a no-man’s-land between two cultures.  Only love can get him out.

Molly’s Game – The true story of Molly Bloom (Jessica Chastain), a competitive skier felled by injury heads to Hollywood and ends up operating a high-stakes poker ring dominated by powerful Hollywood men.  Money, fame, power, alpha male ego, they create a minefield for Bloom, mapped smartly by Chastain and writer-director Aaron Sorkin.

NOT GREAT, BUT WORTH THE TIME:

Lady Bird – An outstanding replay of the classic mother/daughter conflict.  A keen portrayal of a teenage girl searching for self that drives parents crazy.  A great chic flick.

American Made —Tom Cruise is at his best—charming, naïve adventurer—in this entertaining story of an American rogue pilot who becomes a drug kingpin.

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