2017 was an odd year for movies. There were two major releases in the same year, a few sequels that no one expected or wanted and some blockbusters that nobody could see coming. But 2017 also had the best start to a movie career in decades with the release of one of the best-reviewed and least-seen pictures of all time – Wonder Woman ! It was an odd, but fun year for movies. The number of genre films released this year far outnumbered the 2016ovies released in 2017. There was also widespread disappointment at some very big box office flops as well as success for some lesser known filmmakers. Here is a look at what came out this year, including commentary from myself and my favorite reviews from last year!
Inhumans and Aquaman
After a long wait, the two Disney licensing marvels were released this year. The first, Inhumans, stars Paul Dano as the Flash, Shailene Woodley as Flash’s sister Amelie, a young Earth princess from another world, and Nicole Tansy as the rest of the Inhuman family. The second, Aquaman, is a prequel to the DC Comics Super Heroes series, but takes place 50 years before that. Both feature returning cast members including Nicole Tansy as Queen Calis and Danny McBride as the Flash, and newcomers like William Fichtner as the King of Atlantis and Michael Kors as the Stranger.
The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey
The hobbit is one of the most 1933 film icons, and while Batman and Robin may have been released a decade apart and cost more than $100 million, the hobbit still holds a special place in game film history. Given the choice between the two directors, Christopher Lee and Peter Jackson, which one would you choose? (It’s hard to pick.) Jackson’s movie is an almost eerie, beautiful piece of filmic art, full of splendor and sadness. But his hobbit does not compare to his successor, George Lucas, who turned his trilogy of fantasy novels into a hit movie series with the prequel The Phantom Menace. The hobbit is the inspiration for Smeesh, the hobbitish water dog in The Lion King, and his friends are the living, breathing creatures of that film.
The Lion King
This was the year of the spectacle. Disney’s classic tale of a king and his animals, The Lion King, was released. The 1955 film is one of the all-time greats, and had what many considered to be a throwback to Broadway and big-screen entertainment, with a musical in some scenes. It also had unique plotlines and performance from its stars, who were all first-time nominees for the Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay. But there were also plenty of missteps, especially in the film’s closing scenes, where Isi and Nala meet for the first time as children and are instantly recognizable. The Lion King also did very well at the box office, earning slightly more than Avatar did in its opening weekend, but was panned by critics and lost at least some of its magic in the eyes of viewers.
After dominating the box office in 2016, Black Panther was released in 2017 and became a blockbuster, turning up the volume on the blockbuster game. The Marvel Cinematic Universe, which also included Avengers: Infinity War, Iron Man 3 and 4, and solo solo flick Ant-Man, was a very successful year, with major blockbusters like Star Wars: The Last Jedi and The Avengers. But the team’s most popular member, T’Challa, replaced his dead-president father, Idi Amin, and his rich, black Saviour, King T’Chaka, in the role of king. But even with their black king as a showstopper, the other major themes of the film – trust, loyalty, and forgiveness – resonated across race and culture.
Spider-Man: The Sequel to the Classic, which came out in 2017, is probably the most anticipated film of the year. It stars Paul Dano as Spider-Man and Emma Stone as Gwen Stacy, as well as many of the cast and crew from The Lion King. The film is a beautiful look at the relationship between a young man and his alter- Ghost, as well as a look at the diversity of the cast and crew. But the most fascinating aspect of Spider-Man: The Sequel is its opening sequence, in which Gwen, now known as Gwen Stacy, is saved by an airplane and taken to New York to be a hero. It was a truly unexpected and impactful occurrence, and one that changed Gwen’s life.
#Godzilla vs. Kong – Which one should we watch?
Anyone who has ever loved a Godzilla movie will want to see this one. The two were simply made for one another. Kong is a naturallyiamorphous ocean creature, he is the most beautiful, powerful and scary thing to ever walk the Earth. And in Godzilla vs. Kong, he is challenged by a new breed of monster that we have never seen before – namely a land monster, both biological and technological. He is easily out-classed by Godzilla in the land area, but is challenged in the ecosystems, especially the ocean and atmosphere. After a few hard weeks, Godzilla is challenged in the skies, when he confronts a new breed of bird-like beast, the Visible Forests, who use the infrared light from the sun to guide their flight. Meanwhile, Kong is challenged by his ancient, long-ago-born descendant, the Iso-Espionage King. If one were to choose between these two, who would win?
Black Widow and Agent 49
In a year when practically every major Hollywood production was expected to be a box office bomb, there was hope for a film about black female superheroes. But that all changed with Black Widow, a powerful independent character who is the primary and only character who can protect the Earth from massive threats. In these years, super heroine films were expected to be action-oriented, featuring fast-moving, high-octane fighting, shooting, and high-quality special effects. But Black Widow is much more than that. It is a story of two black women, one whose name is Agent 49, and another whose name is Black Widow. It is a examination of race and gender in the country’s history, bringing forth the issue of slavery, the Klans and the Jim Crow laws. It is also the first film to include Scarlett Johansson as Black Widow, who starred in the hit series The Winter Soldier, and will become her first solo feature film.
Agent Smith and Agent Skye
Another one of those box office flops that no one could have predicted, Agent Smith and Agent Skye also landed at a time when most expected a total failure. It is a 1989 action film about a former Delta Force teams member named Smith who teams up with a former agent named Skye in an effort to save the world. It has the basic elements of a action film, with the two heroes tiring of their lives as Secret Service, and taking up their quest to save the world. It stars Robert Downey Jr., Halle Berry, and Jet Li, who is perhaps the most recognizable Chinese person in the world.
Final Fantasy, Sam and Max and Finding Nemo – Finally!
All three of the main protagonists in Final Fantasy, the first three in the series, have a special role in this year’s film. Each of them is an almost modern-day hero after being retired from the military; each has a specific role in saving the world and bringing it back to health – the four main characters are Sam, Max, the Genie, and the Octoroon. Sam, Max, and the Genie are almost intangibly powered by the power of the human spirit, while the Octoroon is almost physically ADSVED from the human genome. If there was ever a time for a “yes” to poll, this is it.
Final Fantasy X & XIII-2
The Final Fantasy X & XIII-2 games are where the series really shines, and that’s because of their story and characters. The first Final Fantasy is an action movie, while the second is an adventure, and the final Final Fantasy is a Psychological-based novel that gives the characters a human-like perspective. There is also an incredible artbook and soundtrack collection for this film series, so you can treat yourself to a