Keeping it Reel: What a difference a year makes

So it’s a Saturday evening as I write this and today I went to watch “Avengers: Infinity War” for a second time as I was keen to pick up on what I had missed the first time around. I’m not even a big Marvel fan but had enjoyed it so much that I couldn’t not go without watching it at the cinema a second time. It is one of those films that can only truly be appreciated on the big screen, and it then got me thinking about this year in films.

Those who read my Top 10 of 2017 article towards the end of last year will note that I describe it as a horrible year for films. Whilst there was the odd gem here and there, such as each of my top three (John Wick 2, Hacksaw Ridge and A Ghost Story for the record), it was largely a below-average year, especially when compared to 2016.

In both years I struggled to come up with a top ten for the year but for completely opposite reasons. I love at my 20-11 rundown of 2016 and in any other year not only would most of the films have been a contender for the top ten, but also have a chance of being my favourite film for the year. It was an exceptional year for movies. Skip forward twelve months and I struggled to create a top ten because, in my opinion, there weren’t enough good films. Infact, I would go as far as saying that not a single movie in my top ten of 2017 would have made it into the same list in 2016, infact, some wouldn’t have even made my top twenty. It is a hugely disappointing year for films.

So heading into this year I wasn’t overly optimistic and out of the first four movies I watched during 2018 I only liked one, but as the year has gone on I have been genuinely surprised about how many great (not good) movies there have been. Granted, there have been some stinkers, such as “A Wrinkle in Time”, “Downsizing” and “The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society”, but comparatively this is a much better year.

To make it easier for me to rank at the end of the year I’ve already given each film a score, meaning I can simply sort them at the end of 2018 and make the list a lot quicker to compile. Without revealing what my favourite film of the year so far is, films such as “A Quiet Place”, “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri”, “The Shape of Water” and “Avengers: Infinity War” have already achieved a higher score than I would have given to my favourite film of 2017. I haven’t seen anything even close to how much I loved “Captain Fantastic” in 2016, but it is still a promising start to the year.

So looking ahead, there are plenty of films that I am looking forward to, including “7 Days in Entebbe”, “Mary Shelley” and “Alita: Battle Angel”, as well as some sequels coming our way. I must admit that I don’t particularly like the look of “Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom”, but you never know.

I’m not sure whether I will reach 100 films again this year as I no longer work at a cinema. I currently sit at 32 movies from the first four months, which is it continues would put me at 96. It would also guarantee, assuming that I don’t start working in the industry again by the end of the year, that for the third year in a row my favourite film is one I paid for (consider when I say that that in the previous two years I go into films for free so paying for them was rare).

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