Mooreviews’ Top 10 Movies of 2018 (So Far)

Check out my top movies of 2018 (so far) here and remember these are just my opinions, so don’t give me too much hate in the comments if your favorite movies didn’t make the cut.

Also these are not ranked and there are no honorable mentions as those will come when I do a final list at the end of the year.

Enjoy!!

BlacKkKlansman

Spike Lee has created some monumentally excellent films throughout the years, but his best and fully realized film is definitely BlacKkKlansman. David John Washington and Adam Driver are absolutely fantastic and I found their characters to be incredibly relatable. Their stories of being stuck between two opposing sides that want them to hate each other and not be taken over by hate feels real and has a message that relates well to today’s social climate.

Lee tends to have strong messages about race throughout his joints and, whether or not you believe he takes to too far sometimes, he never breaks his style or conforms so people won’t feel offended. He has no filter and has a style that flows perfectly throughout BlacKkKlansman. It even finds time be funny amongst the incredible imagery, excellent parallels between the two sides, and exploration on black culture that feels extremely fresh.

BlacKkKlansman that attempts to defeat hate and sparks a discussion that would be interesting to see viewers have outside of the movie theater.

Currently in Theaters, Get Tickets HERE

Eighth Grade

So much effort went into Eighth Grade to make it feel like an authentic telling of today’s middle school life is like and it succeeds on every level. It goes for every type of awkward moment without it ever feeling like it trying to exploit these moments for laughs. Elsie Fisher and Josh Hamilton have great chemistry and give a truly realistic portrayal of a father/daughter relationship.

Comedian Bo Burnham taking the reins in the writing and directorial roles needs to happen more often. Hearing his research done for the film and how authentic he wanted to be feels incredibly refreshing and is well reflected in his film. Not to mention, he blends his humorous and musical style with the tough subjects the film presents flawlessly. It definitely can be a shocking discovery for parents seeing what current eighth graders go through, but it’s without a doubt a worthwhile experience.

Burnham’s stand-up is hilarious, but I think Eighth Grade shows that making films is where he truly belongs and hopefully we will see more from him soon.

Currently in Theaters, Get Tickets HERE

Love, Simon

Leaving this film, I couldn’t help but feel happy and crack a smile. It tells an incredibly poetic and modern telling of a struggling young man who can’t tell anyone that he is gay. Nick Robinson honestly gives one of my favorite performances of the year as he showcases Simon’s caring personality and conflicting identity. It feels completely natural and gives an honest interpretation of what many struggle with in the real world.

It showcases how regardless of what sexuality you are, we all face the same struggles with love and understanding ourselves. It’s a message that Love, Simon displays perfectly and many will find a strong relatability to Simon’s story. Not to mention, that everyone’s reaction to Simon’s coming out feel very real thanks to the solid performances by the rest of the cast.

Love, Simon gives the big screen a representation and story that many have desired to see for years and it easily captured the hearts of those who saw it.

Stream it on Amazon HERE

Game Night

This film easily had one of the best ensembles of the year. No player feels like a weak link or that they don’t belong. This especially true when you have actors like Jason Bateman, Rachel McAdams, Billy Magnussen, and Kyle Chandler who bring their absolute “A-Game” in Game Night. Together, they create consistently funny moments and have great chemistry that undoubtedly made Game Night one of the best comedies of the year.

But where Game Night stands out amongst the rest of the comedies is the superb directing from John Francis Daley, of Freaks and Geeks fame, and Spider-Man: Homecoming writer Jonathan Goldstein. The two’s camera work and vision is incredibly unique. They made the film have awesome long-shots, stylized transitions that looked like board game pieces, and great atmospheres that gave their actors plenty of room to play around.

Going into Game Night, I honestly didn’t expect much, so coming out feeling as great as I did made the film one of the best surprises of the year.

Stream it on Amazon HERE

Crazy Rich Asians

I mean look, if I say in my review that a film legitimately revitalizes an entire genre, you know it’s probably one of my favorites of the year. Most Rom-coms end up having plenty of canned laughter that often misses and has the same style that plenty of other films that came before it had. But Crazy Rich Asians stands out for just simply having a stylish color palette that blends with its character’s culture.

It also boasts one of the best ensembles of the year with all of them having excellent chemistry and create naturally funny moments. Constance Wu and Henry Golding have great romantic chemistry that leaves audiences smiling and genuinely hoping the best for them. Crazy Rich Asians not only gives fans of the acclaimed novel complete satisfaction, but may even bring new fans on-board.

Not only is Crazy Rich Asians one of the funniest movies of the year, it’s pretty much impossible not to have a smile plastered across your face when watching it.

Currently in theaters. Get Tickets HERE

A Prayer Before Dawn

Most sports film often delve into the glamour of the sports world and evoke more bright and colorful feelings; A Prayer Before Dawn does the complete opposite of that. Instead, it focuses on being true to the cruel and horrifying struggles that Billy Moore describes in his memoir. It’s definitely hard to watch, but seeing Billy’s life is extremely moving. It doesn’t hold anything back and really made Billy a character I wanted to see get better and succeed.

Joe Cole’s performance is probably one of the best I have seen so far this year and he often showcases his emotions without speaking a word. Cole shows Billy’s hardened aggression and desperation while also showing his love for boxing perfectly. Cole was made even better thanks to director Jean-Stephane Sauvaire’s excellent camera work. The boxing scenes really put viewers in the ring with Billy and each punch is felt with brutal force. Not to mention, his choice to not only film on location in one Thailand’s most notorious prisons, but to include actual prisoners in scenes adds to the film’s authenticity.

A Prayer Before Dawn stripped away the fantasy elements of a typical sports film and instead treats itself like a real redemption story. All in all, there needs to be more films like this one.

Stream it on Amazon HERE

Avengers: Infinity War

The MCU’s climax really encapsulated everything they have been setting up for years. Having everyone finally come together and even meet for the first time, feels special. It’s not only a proud moment for those that have watch every film that came prior, but it is truly a cinematic landmark. There’s epic action sequences that are both down on earth and throughout space, fun banter amongst the tough and ominous opposition they face.

All in all, what I loved so much about Infinity War was that it gave me exactly what I’ve wanted and have been looking for in the MCU since the very beginning. A truly tough foe that comes in the form of Thanos, thanks to a spectacular performance by Josh Brolin, a tone that’s a little more dark and serious, and actual stakes. Not to mention, an ending that feels satisfying and true rather than a quick tie-up.

Infinity War is a film that will keep people talking and even have new thoughts and questions for the MCU. It brought everything it could and undoubtedly showed that we are a long ways away from the MCU ending. And that’s not necessarily a bad thing.

Stream it on Amazon HERE

The Strangers: Prey at Night

Prey at Night chooses to be vastly different from the 2008 original, but still kept what made the original great. It blends the Stranger’s odd, playful, and dreading presence with the fun, crazy, and colorful style of the 80s. There are plenty of homages, camera styles, and music that perfectly evoke 80s horror movies and I couldn’t have fallen in love with the film’s aesthetic any faster. Honestly, I barely even recognize Prey at Night as a sequel and see it more as a re-imagining of the original for a new audience.

The cast is small and it builds to the film’s strengths of getting to know the character’s dynamics with one another and see some changes they face once the Strangers come around. The film’s score also evokes plenty of fun 80s horror movies and I found myself cracking a smile every time it was used to transition between scenes. For me, Prey at Night makes all of the smart choices it needed to have: a maze-like trailer park setting, the stalking style of the Strangers, a true sense of style, and the pool scene (if you’ve seen Prey at Night, you know what I’m talking about. It’s awesome.).

Surely some will wonder how I could possibly pick Prey at Night over other well received horror films like Hereditary or A Quiet Place. Honestly, I think Prey at Night is better (regardless what my score for A Quiet Place is) because it doesn’t feel that it needs to be profound or different. Even watching it again, I found myself liking Prey at Night even more and I honestly can’t say the same about A Quiet Place.

Prey at Night shows that The Strangers franchise could see light in the future and it honestly deserves it. Who know, maybe in the next decade we could see the Strangers in a meta-filled, punk-pop styled, and 90s horror inspired outing.

Stream it on Amazon HERE

Upgrade

Leigh Whannel and Blumhouse’s newest collaboration delivered excellence on so many levels. Putting Logan Marshall Green is the lead was a bold, but incredibly smart movie. He’s no household name by any sort of mainstream audience, but his dedication to the film was incredibly clear. The film just would be the same without Marshall’s training to make the technical fighting scenes done and his ability to showcase Grey’s struggles.

Upgrade also mixes an interesting sci-fi world with Whannel’s gory and fun style perfectly. It definitely has moments that are not for the squeamish, but it’s still an absolute blast with the creative sci-fi elements of the film. Marshall and his A.I. associate, STEM, also share some wonderful dialogue and have moments that lead to a surprising and heartbreaking ending.

It’s a movie that leaves its viewers satisfied and creates a fresh new sci-fi tale that could even be considered to be almost like a superhero movie. It’s clear that Marshall and Whannel need to work together again and perhaps it could be a sequel that Upgrade surely deserves.

Stream it on Amazon HERE

Deadpool 2

Bringing the “merc with a mouth” felt much more than just a simple cut and dry sequel. It not only improves on all of the gags and jokes the first one sets up. It also has a story that’s more about Deadpool’s character and not only feels right, but brings actual emotion out of its viewers. It has excellent action sequences and showcases each hero and villains powers effectively. Even the score and music tracks feel more impactful this time around and actually feel like they play a part in the story.

Ryan Reynold’s truly redeems himself, amongst comic book fans, with a performance that shows how much he cares. Not to mention, Zazie Beetz creates one of the most bad-ass and fierce female heroes the big screen has had. It’s a well-crafted story overall and the small additions, references, and fixes are truly for the fans and it’s one of the few movies that fans can fully appreciate because they knew how much Reynold and company cared.

It almost even reminds me of the differences between Guardians of the Galaxy and Vol. 2. The first did an excellent job of setting up why we should love this character, while the second improves on everything, gives us more, and creates a story that matters.

Stream it on Amazon HERE

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