2019 was an interesting year for movies overall. As always, there were big hits, some that had potential but were hugely disappointing, and a few rare gems that will leave a permanent imprint in your soul. I’m giving you my top five film choices that really stood out for me this year.
The Grizzlies – 2019 started out strong with this Canadian film directed by Miranda de Pencier that was shown at Cineplex about a determined teacher who brings his passion of sport (lacrosse) to youth in a small Inuit town called Kugluktuk. Based on a true story, it is incredible to know the great lengths that went into the production. The film shows the complexities of suicide, the adversity that these teens and families face on a daily basis, and the courage for some to break through. A profound movie-going experience, including original music by various Indigenous artists.
Fighting With My Family – A great cast (especially my favourite; Nick Frost!) with family dynamics that make each character lovable in their own way. The story resonates with many of us, even if we’re not in the throws of becoming professional wrestlers in the WWE ring, but knowing your place in the real world. Be the underdog in your own story.
Rocketman – Taron Egerton (known for his incredible performance as Eddie the Eagle!) is once again brilliant, this time stepping into the glittery shoes of portraying the iconic performer; Elton John. The poignant message of the film: I’m Still Standing.
Bohemian Rhapsody – Rami Malek releases his inner Mercury (Freddie Mercury from Queen) that will bring you to your feet and then to tears. Absolutely loved this film from start to finish. The music, the memories, the heartbreak and the notion that it is never too late to find Somebody To Love.
Yesterday – What would life be without the music of The Beatles? A little bit of this and that, Yesterday is full of romantic interludes and comedic flourishes with a fantasy plot. I’m a sucker for musicals. Himesh Patel is wonderfully charming and his vocal ranges in many of the songs are melodic to the ear and truly touch the heart. He paired perfectly with the ridiculously cute and whimsical, Lily James. In the end, there is no doubt that the film does Come Together.
*Honourable Mention: Doctor Sleep – A sequel that does pay homage to Kubrick’s 1980’s classic, The Shining, yet clearly succeeds with its own style too. I was very captivated by the intensity of the movie, the characters, the compelling villain, and just the story itself. Definitely not disappointed and a bonus that I could actually sleep afterwards.