Best & Worst Movies of 2019…So Far!

We’re halfway through the year (can you believe it?!) and summer has well and truly arrived in the UK…in the sense that it’s kind of warm, but won’t stop raining. At least it’s an excuse to hide indoors and see all the blockbusters! I feel like 2019 has been a great year for movies so far. It’s had its fair share of stinkers and disappointments for sure, but on the whole I’ve really enjoyed the 2019 releases I’ve seen. In fact, if I check out my Letterboxd ratings, I’ve got 3 five-star movies for the year, compared with none at this point in 2018!

In true blogger fashion, I thought this would mark the perfect time to pick my Top 5 Best and Worst movies of the year so far. Shall we start with the duds? It’s always nice to end on a high note!

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#5 Someone Great

I really wanted to love this movie. I knew not to expect something award-worthy, or a completely original plot that would blow me away, but the cast is impressive and if nothing else I thought I was guaranteed a lot of laughs. Unfortunately, it was a disappointment. It had its moments but it mostly felt like the movie was just trying to take the piss out of Millennials.

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#4 What Men Want

Taraji P. Henson being an absolute badass in a comedy where she can hear men’s thoughts? What could possibly go wrong? It took far too long for the movie to get going, and although it started to pick up steam eventually I’d lost interest at that point. Tracy Morgan was pretending he was actually starring in an episode of 30 Rock.

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#3 Wine Country

It’s still too soon, I’m not sure I can even talk about Wine Country. Some of my favourite comedic actresses getting together and getting drunk should have been a match made in heaven, so why was it so damn boring? I’m starting to get very suspicious of Netflix Original comedies…

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#2 Wonder Park

This stupid movie made me cry for no purpose whatsoever. If you’re a fan of theme parks and really want to watch a budget, crap version of Inside Out then here’s your perfect movie. I still don’t know why it’s even called Wonder Park when the park in the actual movie is called Wonderland. Arggghhh!

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#1 Serenity

I’ve just realised I never even wrote a mini-review of this movie, let alone anything structured. In fact, I almost gave Serenity a pass because it’s at that level of terrible where I actually had a lot of fun watching it. There’s a good movie in here somewhere, but wow, what a plot twist. Just don’t do what I do and start to read deeper into it, because that’s when it really derails. I’m not sure anything will be able to top this by the end of the year!

I could have quite easily done a list of 10 Best movies of the year so far, which means doing it at the end of the year is going to be horribly difficult. I’ve just enjoyed a lot of movies so far this year! My honourable mentions go to Aladdin, Booksmart, Instant Family, Isn’t It Romantic, Long Shot, Missing Link, Us, Captain Marvel, and Fighting with My Family for narrowly missing out on a spot.

So, without further ado, here are what I’ve deemed the best movies of 2019 so far:

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#5 Shazam!

So many of my reviews this year have started with me saying how pleasantly surprised I’ve been with a movie. With the rubbish released in previous years, I never thought I’d have a DC movie in my top list! I was so hesitant about Shazam!, it looked funny but it also looked a bit dumb in the trailer, but I was overwhelmed. I laughed so much in the cinema and I didn’t expect it to have so much heart too – I’ve seen it twice already.

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#4 Pokemon Detective Pikachu

When Detective Pikachu was announced what feels like 10 years ago, I groaned. As someone who grew up with the trading cards, TV show and videogames, I was dying for a live-action Pokemon movie but not one revolved around a Pikachu with a detective hat. But oh my god. I was sold once the first trailer came in. I know the non-Pokemon fans didn’t enjoy it much, but for me, there’s so much fan service involved that I was grinning the whole time.

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#3 Toy Story 4

I’ve only reviewed this very recently so I’ll keep this one short, major kudos to Pixar for not only making an incredible original and 3 amazing sequels. I thought Toy Story 3 gave the movie a perfect ending but number 4 went one better.

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#2 Avengers: Endgame

My Top 2 keep changing minute by minute. In fact, I’ve changed the order at least 5 times just whilst writing this post. Ask me tomorrow and I’ll have changed my mind again. There was no doubt in my mind though that Endgame would be amazing. Marvel just have this movie making down to fine art now, and what a perfect ending this was for the current Avengers line up. It’s a good job it’s being re-released next week because I didn’t make the full movie without a toilet break and I still don’t know what I missed!

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#1 John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum

I know. I know I put John Wick above Endgame. “It’s only because of Keanu Reeves!” I can hear you all saying. You’re probably right. But if you asked me which of 2019’s movies I’ve enjoyed the most so far, it’s going to be Parabellum every time. I saw it twice at the cinema and I’m looking forward to a DVD release so I can watch it again. Those choreographed fight scenes are just perfect, and it’s ruined every other action movie for me. I’m dying to see Chapter 4!

Enough about me, over to you guys…what’s been your Best & Worst of the year so far? Is it feeling like a good year for movies?

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John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum (2019)

john-wick-chapter-3-parabellum-2019Director: Chad Stahelski

Genre: Action, Crime, Thriller

Runtime: 130 Minutes

Main Cast: Keanu Reeves, Halle Berry, Ian McShane, Laurence Fishburne, Mark Dacascos, Asia Kate Dillon, Lance Reddick, Anjelica Huston

Plot: Directly following on from the previous movie, John Wick is now on the run after killing another member of the international assassin’s guild. Men and women worldwide are now after him, and there’s a $14m bounty on his head.

My Thoughts: I was dragged into the John Wick franchise just before the second movie came out. The husband wanted to go see it so we watched the first one together the night before. It was pretty good! I don’t mind action movies, I don’t often rave about them but they’re enjoyable enough. When the second one introduced all that world-building, I was sold, I think I enjoyed it more than the first. So I was dead excited to see Parabellum! Just as I was leaving the house my husband said: “Oh just so you know, Keanu Reeves can’t run and you’ll never be able to unsee it now”. Thanks!

The opening scene in Parabellum? Keanu Reeves running through New York City. Are you kidding me? Sorry to anyone else who now can’t unsee his Phoebe run. ANYWAY. Let me tell you about how much I loved this movie. I freaking loved every minute – it’s honestly on par with Avengers: Endgame right now. This is the standard that all action movies should aim for!

John Wick beats up a guy and snaps his neck with a book in a library, slaps a horse’s rear so hard that it kicks back and kills another guy, and then he rides that horse in the rain down New York’s busy streets, taking out assassins on motorbikes. All that happens in the first 20 minutes. I was exhausted by the end of the movie! The choreography of the fight scenes is just absolutely second to none, if ever there was an argument to be made for an action movie Oscar this is the time.

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Best Bit: The knife fight was my favourite of all. I’m normally a quiet cinema-goer but even I gasped out loud several times, it was so brutal! You thought John Wick was good with guns? Man knows how to toss an axe!

Worst Bit: Have the bad guys in this franchise really not learned their lesson yet? You don’t hurt the doggos!

Fun Trivia: When shooting in Essaouira, Morocco, the set was besieged by hundreds of stray cats. According to Chad Stahelski, the crew had to build literal walls of cages to house them and, more importantly, to keep them from distracting the dogs featured in the scene.

My Rating: Guns. Lots of guns. Actually only 5 guns…but that’s still full marks from me!

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Thursday Movie Picks: Revenge

Thursday Movie Picks

I had to bow out of last week’s Thursday Movie Picks topic (hosted by Wandering Through the Shelves) simply because I only watched 1 new TV show last year! Hopefully, that will change this year as I get into some more of Netflix’s offerings.

However – this week’s topic is ever so slightly awkward in the sense that I’ve had it pre-written for a couple of weeks now and it features the currently infamous Liam Neeson. If you’ll allow me to be ever so slightly crude for a moment, it comes to something when you see one of your favourite actors trending on Twitter and think great, are you dead, a pedophile or a racist?!

Aaaaaanyway, let’s move that to one side so that I can tell you about my 3 favourite revenge movies.

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Taken (2008)

As if Taken is over 10 years old now! I was late to the party with this one – my husband (back when he was my boyfriend) really wanted to see Taken 2 at the cinema so I was forced to see the original just so I knew what was going on. It’s one of those movies where even if you haven’t seen it, you know the famous line “I will look for you, I will find you, and I will kill you.” Also – I just this second learned that they made a TV Show of the series, has anyone seen it? Is it any good?

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John Wick (2014)

As you can see, I’m not going with obscure picks this week. Weirdly, John Wick is another series I was late to, again being forced by my husband (he was my fiance at this point) to give it a watch. If you should learn anything from action movies let it be this – don’t kill another man’s dog. You won’t live to tell the tale!

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Oldboy (2003)

Finally, it seemed criminal to not mention Oldboy this week even though it’s all I’ve been talking about for a couple of weeks now! Oldboy is the ultimate tale of revenge on both sides of the coin. The main who imprisoned Oh Dae-su is after revenge for…well, I can’t tell you for spoiler reasons. Oh Dae-su is after revenge after being locked up and fed fried dumplings for 15 years. It’s dark, gritty, twisted, and an absolute must watch!