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The Dirty Dozen: My Top 12 List of Cinema 2017

If you put a gun to my head and asked me which were the 2017 films I truly enjoyed, the following would definitely make that list. I've purposely compiled the list with movies from abroad in mind, as Filipino films deserve their own listing. I've added a comment or two to guide you in case you do seek out the films you haven't watched yet. Subjective and personal they definitely are; so I'm not expecting you to necessarily agree on the full list. And of course, there are films I would have loved to view, but didn't get the opportunity. 
In no particular order:

1. Okja


Consumerism and the ethical treatment of animals are given a black comedy treatment. It's a modern retelling of Babe, but on steroids! And exclusively on Netflix.

2. Call Me By Your Name


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Yes, it's a gay Summer of '42; but even if idealized and depicted in rose-tinted glasses, it's powerful stuff. And you have to love the father's speech!


3. Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri


At turns darkly comic, then poignant and dramatic. It's Frances McDormand, and Fargo was how many decades ago; so put out the Welcome mat.


4. Good Time 


The tension in this Petty Crime Drama is so tightly wound and pitch perfect. Robert Pattinson is a revelation - so yes, you are forgiven for Twilight.


5. Baby Driver 


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Breathes new life into the heist/caper genre, and brilliantly merges the musical soundtrack with the action onscreen. Plus what an opening car chase!

6. The Meyerowitz Stories 


Dustin Hoffman, Adam Sandler, and Ben Stiller deftly mixing Drama and Comedy in a New York family saga from Noah Baumbach. Achingly real, with wonderful ensemble acting.

7. Wind River


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From out of nowhere, a police procedural that successfully dares to be different - with an outrageous use of flashback. First-time Direction by Taylor Sheridan.

8. Star Wars: The Last Jedi

Who cares what some of the fans are saying, I loved how Rian Johnson showed great respect for the canon, but did it with a mischievous, naughty grin. 

9. Dunkirk 


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Without really showing the enemy, a World War ll epic in this day and age! It's Christopher Nolan again bending Time (a la Memento), but with a different purpose.

10. Thor Ragnarok 


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MCU owes Taika Waititi big time for rejuvenating the superhero trope via in your face humor and healthy irreverence. Hemsworth's gift for comedy revealed.

11. The Big Sick 


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If you have to revive the Romantic Comedy, this is the best way to do it. Kumail Nanjiani, the most unlikely romantic lead!

12. Lady Bird


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A coming of age that has the mother/daughter relationship stealing the show. Greta Gerwig writes and directs.

And if there are two films I wish I could include but haven't watched; based on the rave feedback I got from my eldest, Quintin, who has watched them, they would be:


The Florida Project


What if you lived on the margins of the Happiest Place on Earth? But your Mom's out of a job and hustling?


The Killing of a Sacred Deer


The latest from the director of The Lobster; a twisted tale of revenge.