Top 10 Best Movies of 2016


http://invisiblekidreviews.blogspot.de/2016/12/top-10-best-movies-of-2016.html

2016 was certainly a pretty grim year for the world in general. And especially in the entertainment world, 2016 did take a lot of great talents from us. However, regarding the movies that got released this year, 2016 was a fairly good year. Although every year has its fare share of stinkers, this year was also remarkably full of welcome surprises and movies that actually managed to fulfill its high expectations.

With a total of 77 movies watched and rated this year, these are the best.

This is Invisible Kid's list of the Top 10 Best Movies of 2016!

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#10
The Nice Guys
directed by Shane Black


Good buddy cop movies are a big rarity nowadays in Hollywood. After their big reign during the 80s and early 90s, too many clichees and been-there-done-that buddy cop movie stories flooded the market, making this genre a fairly uninteresting affair to moviegoers today.
Yet along comes very talented script writer and director Shane Black with this year's The Nice Guys.
Putting its main focus on a nicely demanding and investingly written thriller crime story with a comedic edge to it, this buddy cop (or rather buddy detective movie) starring Ryan Gosling and Russell Crowe avoided tired action movie clichees and over abundances of explosions and shootouts. Although this could also be the reason why so little people actually watched this movie, The Nice Guys nevertheless has all the ingredients to slowly become yet another cult favorite movie over the years like Shane Black's previous and quite similar comedy thriller Kiss Kiss Bang Bang.




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#9
Deadpool
directed by Tim Miller


Not only a dream come true for fans of the Merc with a Mouth but most notably also actor Ryan Reynolds who managed to greatly redeem himself for not only his previous unfaithfully horrible representation of the character in X-Men Origins: Wolverine but also basically any of his unsuccesful attempts at a comic book character thus far.
Being the first faithful adaptation of the Deadpool character, studio 20th Century Fox was nevertheless fairly careful in placing their bets on this newest entry in the X-Men universe. Yet little did they know that Deadpool turned out as a big surprise hit, bringing in roughly 780 Mio. dollars compared to its tiny 60 Mio. dollar budget. Thanks to a sharply written script that absolutely got the character, a perfect casting of Reynolds in the titular role and a fitting R-rating, it's a prime showcase that even with a fairly small budget (for a blockbuster) a creative team, a great script and taking risks can actually pay off. It became the highest grossing R-rated movie to date and also started Hollywood's still apparent R-rated movie craze.

For the full Review click here.
 



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#8
The Magnificent Seven
directed by Antoine Fuqua


Speaking of surprise hits, while it will probably never be able to top the classic original from 1960, this year's remake of the classic western The Magnificent Seven was really surprisingly good.
While no masterpiece in any regard, this Denzel Washington and Chris Pratt lead neo western was a rock solid popcorn flick. More than that though, aside from featuring a perfectly cast team of protagonists, the Magnificent Seven remake actually managed to take some risks with its storytelling by giving you the feel that actually any single one of those characters you grew to love could die.
In the day and age of Marvel movies and multi-contracted big A-list movie stars, Hollywood grew lazy of taking risks - yet not with this one. The Magnificent Seven struck a perfect balance between being entertaining, funny, intense and serious - delivering a well round up package that felt both like a modern day blockbuster yet with the themes and atmosphere of a gritty old western.

For the Quickie Review click here.
  




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#7
Don't Breathe
directed by Fede Alvarez


When it comes to the horror genre, Hollywood very heavily lacks new ideas. This goes all the way back to actually lacking a premise that is simple and intriguing.
Along comes up and coming and extremely talented director Fede Alvarez with Don't Breathe. After having already made the extremely gory and intense Evil Dead remake, Alvarez's newest horror gem takes a step back from the intense gore and rather focusses on a great mix between a thriller and horror movie. While Don't Breathe might've slipped under the radar of many movie goers this year, they should definitely watch it as soon as they can. Don't Breathe simply turns the well known "blind victim against a team of robbers" premise on its head by turning the tables. With yet another killer performance by Stephen Lang and especially Jane Levy along with numerous creative and nail bitingly intense moments, it's amazing into just how many creative ways director Fede Alvarez managed to lead this simple yet exciting premise. You can without any doubt say that Alvarez used every single drop of potential the premise offered and delivered a horror thriller that doesn't have one single boring moment.

For the Quickie Review click here.




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#6
 Zootopia
directed by Byron Howard & Rich Moore


Zootopia aka "that one movie you had to see ever since you saw that sloth clip" is the first animated movie on this year's list filled with quite a few other ones.
Zootopia is a movie that easily could've went the easy route and delivered simply a fun yet predictable animal jokes fueled animated adventure for kids. Yet little did everybody know that Zootopia would actually deliver a surprisingly investing detective story along with tackled themes of racism, stigmatism and stereotyping. Marketed as a fun run of the mill animation movie for kids, Zootopia sure enough was more than meets the eye. Yet this doesn't mean that Zootopia isn't funny though as well. With well written jokes and comedy full of adult innuendos as well as some good ole' slapstick comedy sprinkled in here and there, this is an animated movie that will fully immerse and invest both young and adult viewers equally as much.
Throw in a whole bunch of lovable and diverse characters to top it all off and a sequel is basically guaranteed and only a matter of time.

For the full Review click here.




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#5 
The Secret Life of Pets
directed by Chris Renaud & Yarrow Cheney 


Yeah sure, The Secret Life of Pets might lack the social commentary and serious themes of other movies like Zootopia, but I will be damned if this isn't one of the most back to the roots saturday morning cartoon comedy movies in recent memory.
Even though the movie takes a bit of time to warm up, as soon as the main adventure and plot starts, the gags, slapstick humor and wonderfully wacky and colorful characters just come flooding in with no end in sight. Lead by the crazy maniacal bunny Snowflake, Secret Life of Pets is equal parts cute, likable, crazy and aggressive. This is showcased perfectly both in the wide variety of pet characters in the movie as well as (most notably) the bombardment of comedy and slapstick.
Topped off with a heartwarming message at the end that perfectly rounds up this throwback, simple yet incredibly fun and entertaining animated adventure, this is yet another movie that already got its sequel greenlit - and it's easy to see why.

For the Quickie Review click here.




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#4
The Jungle Book
directed by Jon Favreau


Aside from counting their billions of dollars from what Star Wars and the Marvel movies made them, Disney is also pretty busy with planning their extensive line of upcoming live-action-adaptations of their most famous classic Disney animated movies. And it all started with this year's first live-action-adaptation of The Jungle Book -  and what a way to start it off it was.
While many at first assumed that this Jon Favreau directed live-action version would be nothing more than a visual update of the same old story from the animated cartoon movie, little did they know that this new Jungle Book did not only adapt all of the iconic characters like Mowgli, Baloo, Bagheera, etc. very faithfully but also managed to inject a new adventure-esque theme into the entire movie. On top with a tweaked storyline that turned out to include many key scenes from the original Disney movie yet also delivered many new very emotional as well as intense action scenes (namely the escape from King Louie's palace), The Jungle Book was not only great eye-candy but also a great remake that provided very welcome new ideas and updates to keep this well known adventure fresh and exciting even in 2016.

For the full Review click here.



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#3
Finding Dory
directed by Andrew Stanton & Angus MacLane


Talk about a sequel to a high grossing animated movie that feels just instantly absolutely unnecessary.
Even though it was sure to excite lots of young kid viewers to see it, was there really a demand for a Finding Nemo sequel focussed on Dory? - Not really. Was the final movie itself though worth it? - Absolutely.
Basically completely surprising everybody out of nowhere, Finding Dory is a rare sequel that in terms of the pure handling of its themes and storytelling might very well rival even its highly popular original. Now putting the focus on Dory through finding out who she is and where she came from (Get it? "Finding Dory"?), Finding Dory does an exquisite job of showcasing Dory's handicap of her short term memory loss both in the light of a nice comedic gimmick as well as a serious issue that is not as funny in many situations as many make it out to be. Of course it also doesn't hurt that Finding Dory manages to provide a far better comedic timing and balance of verbal and slapstick jokes than its predecessor. Top that off with a ridiculously heartwarming ending that will make even the most manliest of men cry like little girls and you get yet another great addition to Pixar's huge library of animated masterpieces.  

For the Quickie Review click here.



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#2  
Green Room
directed by Jeremy Saulnier


Green Room might just be only a small indipendent movie and might be next to Star Trek Beyond the last film for recently deceased actor Anton Yelchin, but it sure as hell left a big impression.
Green Room is easily the most intense, gory, realistic and just flatout unnerving thriller of this entire year (and in recent memory).
Much like Don't Breathe, Green Room works with the simple premise of a punk band finding themselves trapped inside a single room within a remote skinhead underground club trying to survive and or escape. Green Room is a no nonsense "here we are. this is the situation."-kind of movie where there simply is no need for an overly complex or large backstory to any of the characters. It's a straight up fight for survival in a hopeless situation that constantly has you on the edge of your seat and asking yourself what you would do to escape. With perfect camera work, creative writing that lets the story evolve into situations you don't see coming, as well as very strong performances by all of the lead actors (including Patrick Stewart in one of his most unfamiliar villanous roles), Green Room is such a ridiculously intense experience that it will keep you thinking about it for days.
 



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#1
Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them
directed by David Yates

 

Apparently every huge and highly bankable franchise needs to go on one way or another in Hollywood. When The Lord of the Rings trilogy was over, there comes The Hobbit. When Star Wars was over, there comes a new trilogy and new spin-offs. When Harry Potter was over, there comes Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them.
The latter however was a first for author J.K.Rowling by having this new tale about how the titular Hogwarts schoolbook came to be not being based on any of her novels, but to be completely written for the movie alone. And fans of Harry Potter and his world do not need to worry, because if there's one thing that Fantastic Beasts showed this year, then it was that Mrs. Rowling sure enough has more than enough fantasy and ideas left to fill Harry's world and multiple movies with plenty of magical imagery and great stories left to show and tell.
Regarding big blockbuster Hollywood productions, there was not a single movie this entire year that felt as well rounded, balanced and flatout entertaining and fun as Fantastic Beasts.
With a completely new set of protagonists, a vastly new story focus, loads of new ideas and a very confident decision to avoid any unnecessary or shoved in fan-service connections to the Harry Potter stories (here's looking at you Star Wars), Fantastic Beasts is a prime example of how to continue an already well established popular franchise into new directions.
Feeling like a great mix of Harry Potter meets Jumanji meets X-Men, Fantastic Beasts manages to combine very different themes and topics in a story that feels very well constructed, thematically interconnected and entertaining without getting overly complex. It's a fantastic movie that manages to somehow set up an entire line of more sequels to come while also being able to stand on its very own by serving an in itself complete story without any cliffhangers or sequel bait endings.
It is funny, comedic, lovable, scary, charming and very emotional (especially a specific heart-wrenchingly sad goodbye scene) all at the same time.

Simply well written and all around complete feeling movie experiences like this one sadly have become rarities in today's cinema. Thus, it is without any question that Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them is Invisible Kid's pick for the Best Movie of 2016.


For the full Review click here.     

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Honorable Mentions:

Arrival
Captain America: Civil War
Deepwater Horizon
Hacksaw Ridge
Hell or High Water
Imperium
Moana
Rogue One: A Star Wars Story
Sausage Party


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