Nick’s Top 12 Films Of 2017

Ladies & Gentlemen, for the first time, I’ve decided to start my first editorial involving a Top 12 List of my favorite movies of 2017. Now that 2017 is officially over, here’s my Top 12 Films Of 2017. Why Top 12? Because I want to keep my numbers even, to prevent bad luck from happening.

12. Kong: Skull Island

Box Office: $566,652,812

Final Verdict: A-

It’s about time WB took some notes on the criticism surrounding Godzilla & King Kong’s lack of screen time in the 2014 American reboot and Peter Jackson’s King Kong, because us audience members had to wait for an hour for both creatures to appear in their own movie! The first time I saw Kong: Skull Island, I was surprisingly satisfied that this version of Kong, wasn’t a remake, it was it’s own thing.

Kong features interesting characters with famous faces such as Tom Hiddleston, Brie Larson, Samuel L. Jackson, John Goodman & John C. Riley. Amazing Action Sequences are filled with Class A Special Effects. To make you fanboy/fangirls happy, the giant ape himself, appears early in the film! I can’t wait to see Godzilla duking it out with King Kong. I’ll be the first in the line to witness the greatest kaiju battle in the history of cinema!

11. Thor: Ragnarok

Box Office: $853,977,126

Final Verdict: A-

After two disappointing solo movies involving Thor, Marvel Studios decided to change the tone for The God Of Thunder’s third solo entry, by turning it into a comedy as well as paying tribute to 80’s films. Thor’s personality has shifted from a serious stotic Asgardian, to a fun loving Goku type of personality. I’m also relieved that Earth wasn’t heavily involved, it was about time we get to see Thor traveling to other places we’ve never seen on the big screen.

The Hulk returns to help out his comrade fight Hela, who has a mysterious connection to Odin. (Thor’s father) Humor made me laugh uncontrollably since the beginning. Action Sequences were spot on excellent. Special Effects didn’t look fake. Performances from Chris Hemmsworth, Mark Ruffalo, Tom Hiddleston, Care Blanchett & Jeff Goldblum. Bravo Marvel for making a gigantic improvement for Thor! I’m so excited to see Avengers: Infinity War!

10. Fate Of The Furious

Box Office: $1,236,005,118

Final Verdict: A-

This is the first film in The Fast & The Furious franchise, without Paul Walker after his tragic death. The Cast & Crew, finished Furious 7 with the help of Paul’s brothers, and C.G.I. to complete unfinished scenes for their late friend. After completing the film, it was time for everybody to move on with the series without him. Fate Of The Furious’ storyline is the equivalent of Captain America: Civil War, because both films involves a plot about Heroes Vs. Heroes. Dominic Torretto is forced to work with a terrorist named Cypher, to commit crimes, if he doesn’t cooperate, something terrible will happen.

I won’t give away too much for those who haven’t seen the latest chapter. Action Sequences got my blood pumping. An interesting take on Dominic fighting against his friends. Funny Moments from Roman, who serves as The Comic Relief. Performances  from Vin Diesel, Charlize Theron, Dwayne Johnson, Michelle Rodriguez, Tyrese Gibson, Jason Statham, Ludacris & Kurt Russell. Don’t forget the theme song called, “Good Life.” Once again, this film kept me entertained along with other films including Fast Five, Fast & Furious 6 and Furious 7.

9. Justice League

Box Office: $657,924,295

Final Verdict: A-

With the critical and box office success of Wonder Woman, Warner Bros. (WB for short) was finally given a chance to properly organize future films in the DC Extended Universe. This one in particular, was a hit for movie goers and fans, unfortunately, critical reception was mixed. As a critic/fan of DC Comics, I really enjoyed Justice League from beginning to end. This film is lighter than Batman Vs. Superman, for example, Superman no longer acts like an emo, he’s back to his old self.

Joss Whedon did a fantastic job on reshooting the film, as well as rewriting the screenplay. Action Sequences were excellent. Special Effects are eye poppingly gorgeous, except for Henry Cavill’s mustache edited out in the final cut, his appearance reminded me of Buzz Lightyear. Performances from Ben Affleck, Gal Gadot, Jason Moama, Henry Cavill, Ray Fisher & Ezra Miller, who stole the film. Congratulations WB, for not screwing up the DC lore! I hope you continue to improve with your future movies!

8. It: Chapter 1

Box Office: $700,381,748

Final Verdict: A-

Based on the novel by Stephen King, It: Chapter 1 managed to exceed my expectations. Bill Skarsgård did an excellent job on his performance as Pennywise The Dancing Clown, this has got to be the best acting performance since Heath Ledger’s Oscar winning performance as The Joker in The Dark Knight, too bad Bill didn’t get a Best Supporting Actor nomination for his villainous portrayal.

The kid actors also did a fantastic job as The Losers Club, especially Finn Wolfhard as Richie, who serves as The Comedy Relief. I’m not gonna lie, I got scared by one of Pennywise’s scary looking forms. I’ll give you a clue, his form resembles Bethenny Frankel from The Real Housewives Of New York City. Source Material felt accurate to the book and the film didn’t flash forward the kids as adults and then go back as kids. I’m eager to see a second part of The Losers Club reunite as grown ups and attempt to defeat Pennywise. All I have to say is the 2017 version of Stephen’s King’s It, is far more superior than Tim Curry’s version.

7. Baby Driver

Box Office: $226,945,087

Final Verdict: A, FOR APEX!

The Best way to describe Baby Driver, is in fact an instant masterpiece. Edgar Wright did a great job on directing and writing the movie. Most of the songs match the action sequences as the music synchronizes with the action. Performances from Ansel Elgort, Jon Hamm, Jamie Foxx, & Kevin Spacey. (prior to destroying his image) Baby Driver is a sleeper hit that managed to keep me satisfied in the passenger seat. Edgar Wright claims he’s writing on a sequel to the film. Will have to see if this possible follow up is official. Bravo Edgar, bravo!

6. Jumanji: Welcome To The Jungle

Box Office: $962,077,546

Final Verdict: A, FOR APEX!

When I first heard that Sony was working on a remake to Jumanji, I was appalled that they were making it without Robin Williams after his untimely death. Due to negative reactions from across the world, Sony decided to cancel the remake, by working on a spiritual sequel to the original movie. By the time I saw a trailer for Jumanj: Welcome To The Jungle, I had mixed feelings about it, because I thought it was gonna be a typical cash grab for the lowest common denominator.

Upon the movie’s release, I didn’t expect this movie to be so good from start to finish. The Rock, Kevin Hart, Karen Gillan & Jack Black all did a great job on their performances. Action Sequences were awesome. Story felt different and it didn’t recycle the plot from the first film. Special Effects were a major improvement. Funny Moments made me laugh hysterically, especially Jack Black as a teenage girl trapped in an overweight middle aged man’s body. To put the icing on the cake, there’s an Easter Egg connected to the original film as subtle honor to Robin Williams.

5. Wonder Woman

Box Office: $821,847,012

Final Verdict: A, FOR APEX!

After Wonder Woman made her big screen debut in Batman Vs. Superman. Warner Bros. (WB for short) was struggling to earn critical acclaim like its rival, Marvel Studios. They’ve decided bring balance to the mythology of DC Comics, starting with Suicide Squad, however critics didn’t like it, but I did. Patty Jenkins was hired to direct the fourth installment of the DC Extended Universe with Gal Gadot reprising her role as the title character. When I first saw a preview for Wonder Woman, I was giving WB a chance to redeem themselves after watching Suicide Squad, proving that they can make high quality superhero films.

After watching Wonder Woman, I’ve never felt this happy since The Dark Knight Rises ended Christopher Nolan’s Batman on a high note. Wonder Woman’s orgin is a unique take on handling a superhero orgin story without involving the death of a loved one, it was more like an individual who wants to save lives immediately. Gal Gadot did an excellent job as the titular character. Action Sequences were spot on incredible. Chemistry between Wonder Woman & Steve Trevor (her love interest) is perhaps the main highlight. A lighthearted tone instead of a dark and depressing one. I’m really looking forward to seeing Wonder Woman 2. Congratulations WB, keep up the good work. You’ve earned an award for making Wonder Woman who she truly is in the comics. I’m so appalled that Gal Gadot didn’t earn as Oscar nomination for Best Actress!

4. The Lego Batman Movie

Box Office: $311,950,384

Final Verdict: A, FOR APEX!

Due to the success of The Lego Movie, WB worked on a spin-off involving a parody of Batman in The Lego Batman Movie. Well it’s about darn time that WB developed an actual Batman parody, rather than Joel Schumacher’s god awful Batman & Robin movie that nearly destroyed the franchise! Will Arnett reprises his role as Batman, in this movie, he’s depicted as a manchild who refuses to act like an adult towards Robin.

The Story kept me invested and I never got bored. Animation looks beautifully gorgeous. As a Batman fan since Bruce Timm’s animated series, this picture is filled with Easter Eggs, callbacks to other Batman films and cartoons. The Jokes made me laugh out loud. Every Batman villain is featured. The Writers did a bunch of extensive research on the mythos of Batman. I have to admit, I think Lego Batman is my favorite animated film of 2017. It’s too bad that it never got nominated for an Oscar for Best Animated Film! Why is The Academy against The Caped Crusader? Show some respect for Big Pete’s sake!

3. Dunkirk

Box Office: $525,245,546

Final Verdict: A, FOR APEX!

For the time in his career, Christopher Nolan directed his first war movie about the real life evacuation of Dunkirk, told in three different perspectives, ranging from The Ground, The Sea and The Air. The Story kept me invested without looking at my watch to indicate if I’m gonna get bored easily. Performances from Tom Hardy, Mark Rylance, Cillian Murphy, Kenneth Branagh & Harry Styles surprisingly did a good job as a British Soldier. Action Sequences made me feel like I was part of the evacuation.

Christopher Nolan did an amazing job on directing and writing. Practical Effects were heavily used, Chris dislikes C.G.I. he prefers Practical Effects. Michael Caine makes a voice over cameo, look it up I’m not joking. Now that Christopher Nolan is nominated in the upcoming 90th Academy Awards, I hope Christopher Nolan wins, he deserves a win. As I’ve stated in my Christopher Nolan related reviews, he’s my favorite filmmaker of all time and I want to make stories the way he tells them to his audience. Chris you made another home run, I can’t wait to see what your next film is gonna be.

2. Guardians Of The Galaxy Vol. 2

Box Office: $863,756,051

Final Verdict: A, FOR APEX!

James Gunn & Marvel Studios have once again made another home run for critics and fans alike. Like its predecessor, Guardians Of The Galaxy Vol. 2 is an ultra hit and one of my favorite comedies of 2017. Storyline involving Star-Lord’s long lost father was the missing piece of his origins and he learns the truth about his heritage. I won’t give away who the bad guy of this movie is, you’ll have to see for yourself. James Gunn did an excellent job on directing and writing.

Performances from The Cast were extremely good. Vin Diesel & Bradley Cooper reprising their roles as Groot & Rocket Raccoon. Kurt Russell did a fantastic job as Ego, who is Star-Lord’s dad. Humor managed to make me laugh out loud. Special Effects didn’t look fake at all. Without giving too much away, Yondu delivered the best line in this movie, if you know what I mean. Soundtrack is filled with songs from The 70’s as sign of introducing a new generation of music listeners by going through their grandparents’ records. I cannot wait for Star-Lord & his crew to cross paths with The Avengers in the upcoming Avengers: Infinity War!

Honorable Mentions

I Tonya

Captain Underpants

John Wick: Chapter 2

The Greatest Showman

 Cult Of Chucky

Hey Arnold The Jungle Movie

Get Out


Spider-Man: Homecoming

The Boss Baby

American Made

1. Logan

Box Office: $619,021,436

Final Verdict: A, FOR APEX!

Did you expect the live action remake of Beauty & The Beast as the number movie? Let me explain a variety of reasons on why Logan is my number one movie of 2017. Upon release, Logan is instantly number five on my personal Top 5 Movies next to Pulp Fiction, Return Of The King, The Empire Strikes Back & The Dark Knight. Unlike the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s filmography, this film is completely different than any other superhero movie since Christopher Nolan’s The Dark Knight Trilogy.

The best way to describe Logan, is an Action-Adventure Sci-Fi Western Drama, or in this case, Clint Eastwood’s Unforgiven mixed with Superheroes, both films features an aging protagonist who embarks on a mission one last time. James Mangold, who directed The Wolverine, did a fantastic job on directing and writing. Hugh Jackman did a superb job on his performance as Wolverine for one last time. Patrick Stewart also did a superb job as well for playing Professor X one last time.

Unlike other X-Men films, Logan is a Hard R superhero movie filled with blood & gore, I’m willing to accept the decision for Fox to make an R-rated gorefest, because Wolverine is supposed to be depicted as a one man army similar to Deadpool or The Punisher. The Story is much more character driven as it shows how much Wolverine has gone through a lot of physical and mental pain throughout his entire life.

The Ending made me sob heavily, I won’t tell you how it ends, you’ll have to see for yourself. To put the icing on the cake, Johnny Cash’s song, “When The Man Comes Around,” plays during The End Credits Sequence. Logan is my personal number one film of 2017 and I’m devasted that it only earned one Oscar nomination for Best Adapted Screenplay. I would’ve been happy if Hugh Jackman was nominated for his unforgettable performance as Wolverine.

That’s all I got for my Top 12 Films Of 2017. What’s your favorite films of 2017? Feel free to leave a comment to reveal your favorite films of the past year.

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