I haven't seen The Hateful Eight. I haven't seen The Revenant. I haven't seen Steve Jobs. I haven't seen Carol. I haven't seen Pixels. Four of those will more than likely affect this list once they are released here in Australia, and then there's also Pixels. I mean, I haven't seen it so I can't say for certain that it won't make this list. But as of right now, the 31st December 2015, this list right here is my top 15 films of 2015. Last year, this list was expanded to 25, but that was merely because of how many great movies were released that year. 2015, unfortunately, has been the year of the "pretty good" movie. With the exception of these films here, a majority of the movies I was looking forward to have been a slight let down, and even then, I wanted a few of the ones listed here to be a tiny bit better. That's not to say they're bad, but you know what I mean.
Before I begin this list, I must first bring up my honourable mentions. Even though most of the films this year, while still good, have been disappointing, there were a few contenders for the 15th spot on my list that didn't make the cut. These films include, in no particular order, The Good Dinosaur, The Walk, Ant-Man, Beasts of No Nation, Mission Impossible: Rogue Nation and Straight Outta Compton. Now, time to finally go through the films of 2015 that I loved the most. Thank you, world, for allowing these films to exist.
Kicking off this list is a two-way tie. Trying to decide between Kingsman: The Secret Service and The End of the Tour was incredibly difficult, not just because they're great films, but because they're so different. Kingsman is a fun, action packed spy parody with a lisped villain who eats McDonalds (Samuel L Jackson). It's one of the most joyous films of the year. The End of the Tour, however, is a personal and moving characters study of famous author, David Foster Wallace (Jason Segel). They're both worthy of the 15th spot, but for completely different reasons. READ MY KINGSMAN REVIEW HERE
Science fiction has been at the top of its game lately and since it's arguably my favourite genre, Ex Machina was everything I wanted it to be and more. Led by three excellent performances from Oscar Isaac, Domhnall Gleeson and Alicia Vikander (who has a film in both my best and worst of 2015 lists), this movie is suspenseful beyond belief. It's a film that not only questions humanity, but shows the beauty of it, and it does this through the thought provoking character of Ava. It's a film so brilliant and so simple, you're going to regret not checking it out. READ MY REVIEW HERE
If Fifty Shades of Grey doesn't count as the scariest movie of 2015 then that title can go to It Follows. It's a film almost too simple in terms of plot, but brilliant in the way the subject matter is handled. Maika Monroe has been breaking into the world of hollywood lately, first getting noticed in last year's underrated gem, The Guest. Now, with It Follows, Monroe has done it once again, giving an electrifying and pulse pounding performance. Independence Day: Resurgence is going to be the movie that flings her into stardom. I can just sense it.
No matter what minor problems the third act of this movie has, Sicario is a damn good film. From Denis Villeneuve, the director of both Prisoners and Enemy, comes a thriller about a woman crossing over into Mexico to find the men responsible for an incident that takes place early on in the film. Or at least that's what the film is on the surface. It's a layered and twisted story with some of the best performances of the year. It didn't have quite as big of an impact on me as Prisoners, but for a film on its own, Sicario is hard to resist. READ MY REVIEW HERE
I watched Jurassic Park so many times as a child that I have quite literally memorised most of it. When watching it, I'm able to recite lines as they happen on screen. I'm even a fan of both The Lost World: Jurassic Park AND Jurassic Park 3. I know the latter one isn't that great, but I can have fun with it. When it comes to Jurassic World, I don't care what anyone says. This was a damn good time at the movies. Chris Pratt is the most likeable guy in the world and watching him ride a motorcycle alongside a pack of raptors..... oh my. Now that was something special. READ MY REVIEW HERE
It's like every teen romance movie ever, except it's not. Me and Earl and the Dying Girl goes out of its way to tell you that the film you're watching has no romance whatsoever, and it's glorious. With a visual style similar to that of Wes Anderson, mixed in with plenty of movie references and some genuinely touching moments, as well as tear jerking ones as well, this film just works. It's a little bit on the predictable side, but that's not too big of a problem. This isn't a film with twists and turns. It's a heart warming and honest tale of friendship, even when the odds are against them. READ MY REVIEW HERE
This list was meant to be uploaded yesterday. Thankfully, I decided to check out Love & Mercy before finalising the films that made this list. If I couldn't watch Hateful Eight by the time the year was over, I was definitely going to try check this one out. So I did, and obviously it was worth it as I absolutely loved this movie. It's the true story of Brian Wilson, one of the lead members of the Beach Boys. The film follows his younger self, played by Paul Dano, and also his older self, played by John Cusack. It's an emotionally powerful and hard hitting movie that soars miles ahead of other music biopics.
Joel Edgerton's directorial debut, The Gift, is a film that really stuck with me. From the moment I left the screening, the film was rattling around in my brain. In fact, I still don't think I've been able to stop thinking about it. It's still in there, slowly creeping its way up my top 15 list. The more I think about it, the more I love it. It's a twisted and shockingly dark movie that's got plenty of tricks up its sleeve and an ending that left my friend quite literally hyperventilating. Watching it twice really changed my perspective on the whole thing, and that right there is brilliant cinema. I still don't know which characters I like and which I don't. READ MY REVIEW HERE
Hanks and Spielberg have reunited once again, and the two have decided to tell a story about the Cold War. Now, the Cold War is a subject that really fascinates me, more so than most historical events (not that it took place hundreds of years ago or anything like that), and so watching these two legends come back together for a film that's not only one of the best of the year, but one of Spielberg's best in years, is wonderful. It's dialogue-based and utterly brilliant. There may be little movement on screen, but Spielberg just nails everything. It's a film that is essentially just negotiating and yet, somehow, he makes it cinematic. It's just so, so, so great. READ MY REVIEW HERE
We're now 7 films into the Rocky franchise and I never thought I'd say it, but Creed, the latest installment, is almost on par with the original. Up until now, every Rocky movie essentially uses the same script over and over, and while Creed follows a familiar formula, it works so well. It's a boxing movie with a soul, and yes, there's more than a few emotional scenes. Never thought I'd say this, but Sylvester Stallone gave one of the greatest performances in his career. He may not get an Oscar nominated, but if he did, I wouldn't complain. READ MY REVIEW HERE
This is the film that broke Joss Whedon. I'm sure we will see his triumphant return in the not too distant future, but for now, Age of Ultron destroyed him, and it was so worth it. There was a lot of hype to live up to and a lot of fan expectations that he needed to meet, and while he just fell short, he still made one of the best movies of the year, so that's saying something. Joss Whedon, you did a good job with this movie. It's not a perfect movie, but you did good. Don't let the haters get to you. There's no need to play hide the zucchini anymore. READ MY REVIEW HERE
Now, I love Mad Max and I love The Road Warrior, but Fury Road..... Fury Road is something else entirely. It's the fourth installment in the Mad Max saga and it's only just getting started. Mel Gibson is no more, Tom Hardy serving as his replacement and I know it's an unpopular opinion, but Hardy is much more suited to this role than Gibson was. This film is the definition of insanity, most of the stunts you see on screen done entirely practical, only small elements CGI. It's a movie that just never stops, but I didn't want it to, either. The plot is thin, but the film itself is one we're all going to be talking about years from now. READ MY REVIEW HERE
It's funny, it's scientifically accurate, there's a killer soundtrack and it's got edge of your seat thrills. The Martian is the best film Ridley Scott has made since Gladiator, and even then I'm not sure if I prefer this film or that one. The Martian, along with the other two films I've ranked higher, is one of the few films this year that exceeded all expectations I had for it. I had hope, but I didn't expect it to be THIS good. For the most part, the film is just one man (Matt Damon) alone on mars, and it's some of the most gripping cinema you'll see all year. Right from the opening shot of mars, this film felt like a return to form for Ridley Scott, and he most certainly delivered. READ MY REVIEW HERE
There are plenty of films that can be defined as tear jerking. I've used the term already on this list. Very few films, however, can be described as tear encouraging. Inside Out can be. It's a film that straight up tells you it's okay to cry, right before it shows two of the saddest scenes of 2015. Yes, I cried. Yes, my entire cinema was practically crying. No, I wasn't ashamed. This film told me I didn't have to be. Inside Out, I love you. Pixar, I love you. Disney, I love you. Film, I love you. READ MY REVIEW HERE
It will come as no surprise to anybody who knows me, but Star Wars: The Force Awakens is, obviously, my favourite film of 2015. I've only been talking about this film every single day since the first trailer was released, and every second day before that since the film was announced. I had never been more excited for a movie in my entire life and it's safe to say that I was not let down. Having seen the film 5 times, it's officially made its way into my top 25 films of all time, placed not too far behind Return of the Jedi. There's not much left to be said about this movie as I've already discussed it in excessive detail twice, but what I will say is..... this movie rocks. Bring on Episode 8. READ MY SPOILER FREE REVIEW HERE AND MY SPOILER REVIEW HERE