Favourite Films of 2022: Part 1 – The Movies

We still have to see how it will stand the test of time, but 2022 has been a great movie year, and it feels like the movies are rebounding from the pandemic. I will never not champion the movie-going experience, and here are my favourites from the past year in cinema. Individual achievements to follow.

Top 5 Overall

Everything Everywhere All At Once

Few films are ever able to surpass high expectations, but this one exceeded and succeeded. From the moment I saw the trailer and took note of the cast, I knew I was going to be in for a treat, but I had no idea precisely the spectacle The Daniels had in store for us. We’re treated to this beautifully rich adventure that is as bombastic as it is ambitious, as poignant as it is hilarious. Each member of the cast is outstanding in their own right, but almost make a point to let the audience know it’s a team effort. Michelle Yeoh as Evelyn is superb and there’s no denying that, but to bring Evelyn to life, she needs Ke Huy Quan and Stephanie Hsu and Jamie Lee Curtis. And they all understand this so perfectly that everything works so in sync. It’s as close to a perfect film that 2022 saw.

The Banshees of Inisherin

Almost serving as counter-programming to Everything Everywhere All At Once, this one leans into the careful and quiet. Colin Farrell delivers a career-best performance, in a career filled with quality, underrated performances. Ultimately I had no idea how to approach my thoughts on this. It’s comedic, it’s dark, it’s oddly optimistic, but incredibly depressing. It’s about the friendships we have and the impact they have on the self. It manages to be about so much of everything, but never once feels scattered or gluttonous or indulgent. It very much feels like filmed therapy session, where you just run through everything, it all connects and makes sense, and you feel a sense of relief on the other side, despite everything you just went through. And that’s something only the trio of Farrell, Brendan Gleeson, and Martin McDonagh could bring us.

The Glass Onion

I think the best thing Rian Johnson did for Glass Onion was to not feel the need to one-up Knives Out. He just sets out to deliver a twisty, turny murder mystery with a wild cast of even wilder characters. Daniel Craig feels at home inhabiting Benoit Blanc, and is now having fun in this world he and Johnson are building together. It would be easy to parse through and examine the precient commentary various media personalities this COULD be about, but even leaving certain hyper-specific allegories aside, it’s still a general critique of the trend of hoisting these particular personalities onto a pedestal. And then puts it all through a super fun murder mystery that keeps you on the edge until the very end.

The Menu

Much in the same way the chef prepares his food, the film is precise in its presentation. Director Mark Mylod is very careful to keep you on the edge of your seat from the get-go, but never tips his hand, even leading up to the final moments. Ralph Fiennes is magnificently intimidating as Chef Slowik. His presence looming over the proceedings, installing this slow, creeping sense of dread. His claps gain power and control over the restaurant with each passing course. Anya Taylor-Joy always brings confidence to every scene. Even when Margot is as lost and scared as everyone else, there’s still a hint of knowing in her demeanor. The supporting cast is great with Nicholas Hoult and Hong Chau for delivering superb and uniquely unsettling performances.


I’ll admit it, I’m a Jordan Peele fanboy, and will generally follow wherever he leads. His examination of spectacle, and the human need for it, is surprisingly poignant. His meta-commentary never feels trite or contrived. He’s fully aware of what he’s doing and where he’s trying to lead the audience, but never does it with a wink and a nod. I think Nope is his most polished and aggressive film yet, with exciting performances from Keke Palmer, Steven Yeun and Daniel Kaluuya. This one definitely takes a second watch for it to fully sink in, but it’s worth that second watch.

Most Surprisingly Good

The Unbearable Weight of Massive Talent

This could have gone two ways, and it broke the way of being surprisingly fun. Never tries for greatness, but always stays entertaining.

Best Comedy

  1. Weird: The Al Yankovic Story
  2. Confess, Fletch
  3. Clerks III

Best Drama

  1. The Northman
  2. Emily the Criminal
  3. The Fabelmans

Best Action

  1. The Unbearable Weight of Massive Talent
  2. Violent Night
  3. Bullet Train

Best Superhero

  1. The Batman
  2. Black Panther: Wakanda Forever
  3. Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness

Best Sci-Fi/Fantasy

  1. Three Thousand Years of Longing
  2. Troll
  3. Next Exit

Best Horror

  1. Barbarian
  2. Pearl/X
  3. Black Phone

Best Animated

  1. Wendell & Wild
  2. Sea Beast
  3. Turning Red

Favourite Music of 2022

Favourite Album

Florence + The Machine – Dance Fever

I went back and forth between several albums that could have gone here (see Honourable Mentions). But as a longtime fan of Florence + The Machine, it felt right to put Welch’s grand, beautiful epic of an album in the top slot. From the second the needle drops on side-one, track-one of Dance Fever, you’re captivated, lost in the music, dancing along and ignoring the world. Whether you’re physically dancing around your living room or mentally dancing at your office desk, the album grabs ahold of you and doesn’t let go. It perfectly encapsulates the musical spirit of Florence + The Machine without feeling like a “typical” effort from them.

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What Exactly Did the Beauty & The Beast Curse Do?

Every so often, I see a random meme on social media or in a Buzzfeed-esque listicle about the curse in Beauty & The Beast. There are a lot of questions surrounding it. How old was Beast/Prince Adam when they were cursed? How long have they been cursed? How serendipitous for Belle to show up at the last minute after so many years! Chip… what’s all that about? All very good questions. And if you’ll allow me to speculate, I have some possible answers to the nature of the enchantress’ (fancy witch’s) curse.

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Best in Cinema 2021: Part 1 – The Films

The movie-going and movie watching landscape continues to grow and evolve, against the industry’s will but for their benefit. 2021 saw the tail end of the extended awards season, while kinda-sorta embracing streaming as a viable option when faced with declining interest in the movie-going experience, which will more than likely become a niche endeavour, instead of a standard event. But across the board, great films continued to be released, here were my favourites from throughout the year.

Continue reading “Best in Cinema 2021: Part 1 – The Films”

What Would the Stab Franchise Really Look Like?

Note: I’m writing this immediately after seeing the just-released fifth Scream film. I make passing mention of it, but I do take care to not discuss crucial plot points. There are no spoilers for the new one here. I promise.

Fans of the 90s horror franchise Scream are taking a stroll down memory lane this week with the release of… Scream. It’s the fifth one, but they’ve done away with the conventional numbering of sequels which may or may not have a meta in-film explanation, no spoiler (it does, kinda). I’ll refer to it as Scream 5 throughout this post, because I’m talking about the franchise, so it’ll get confusing to talk about the individual films without distinguishing between them.

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Best in Music: 2021

Best Album

Japanese Breakfast – Jubilee

This year saw two artists abandon their more downtrodden sounds and embrace a happier tone. Lorde had a more straightforward pop album in “Solar Power,” meanwhile the Michelle Zauner led Japanese Breakfast explored the facets of joy and happiness for one of her most personal and experiential records to date. It’s an album you can sit and envelope yourself in, or just have on in the background of a nice dinner, but it’s never disposable noise. It was certainly one of the top albums I had on repeat this year.

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Where To Stream the Fast & Furious franchise

I’ll make no apologies for my love of the big action epics that are the Fast & Furious films. It’s such a solid, workhorse of a franchise that always delivers exactly the movie you expect it to. Great stunts, big action, solid crime-turned-espionage narratives with warm & fuzzy family messaging thrown in for good measure. I dig it.

The 9th entry in the franchise dropped in theatres this past week to the biggest opening weekend box office since Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker. After a year long wait, and just a few days beyond the 20th anniversary of the first one, we finally got to see the next chapter in the franchise. If you’re wanting to binge the franchise before you trek to the theatres, you’ll have to bounce around streaming platforms, even spend a few bucks to rent them. I will put it out there, they’re all available to rent or buy digitally on the usual platforms, Amazon, Apple, GooglePlay/YouTube, whatever that’s looking like now. About $2-4 each to rent, so if you’re gonna binge them all, it’ll cost you, but about as much for one date night to see one film. But if you have multiple streamers, including the big ones, you’re set to stream most of them.

The Fast & The Furious/2 Fast, 2 Furious


HBOMax has the streaming rights on the first two entries. That’s where you’ll start your binging journey. You’ll get introduced to Brian, Dom, Mia, Letty, the mainstays of the franchise. Tej and Roman enter the franchise in 2 Fast, 2 Furious.

The Fast & The Furious: Tokyo Drift

This one is one of the hardest to find, as it’s only streaming on FuboTV, which I don’t know anyone who has it. Beyond that, you’re definitely renting on Amazon or AppleTV.

Fast & Furious

The fourth film in the franchise, which marked the gear shift from street racing and general crime to international espionage and car stunts, is slightly easier to track down, if you have AMC+. I happen to, because I love AMC’s programming, plus you get Shudder and IFC with it, so I can stream the movie. Otherwise, you’re looking at FuboTV for streaming, and everywhere else for digital rentals

Fast Five/Fast & Furious 6

If you’re one of the many who picked up Peacock now that it’s the exclusive home of The Office (I got it for Psych and Saved by the Bell), you’re in luck, because these two are on their home platform. Fast & Furious is a Universal Studios franchise, which is the same corporate entity as NBC, so Peacock is Universal. I’d imagine they had longterm streaming contracts for the various films, and that’s preventing the entire franchise from being under the Peacock umbrella right now, but as those contracts expire, all the films will eventually find their way home.

Furious 7/The Fate of the Furious/Fast & Furious Present: Hobbs & Shaw

The most recent three (except F9: The Fast Saga) are all on rentals. You get lucky if you have Hulu live, you can stream Furious 7 there by way of FXNow, but otherwise, you’re gonna drop some coin on those.

Better Luck Tomorrow

This is a Fast & Furious adjacent film. It’s Justin Lin’s directorial debut, starring Sung Kang. Justin Lin started directing the Fast & Furious films with Tokyo Drift, through Fast & Furious 6, and just returned for F9. Those are also the films starring Sung Kang, as Han… who he also played in Better Luck Tomorrow. Both Lin and Kang have confirmed it’s the same character, making it an origin story for the Han character, and a canon yet unofficial Fast & Furious film. It’s streaming on both Amazon Prime and Paramount+.

93rd Oscar Predictions: Mank Should Lose and Lose Bad

It’s two months after the normal time of year where everybody who writes about movies locks in their predictions for the upcoming awards ceremony. I won’t break down all of them, you don’t really need me pontificating on Best Costume Design (Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom). But I’ll hit the big ones, and really break down why Mank needs to be shut the fuck out.

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