Having seen our collective best movies of 2018 list below you will find each contributor’s individual ballot for their personal top ten films of the year. In addition, we have asked each contributor to tell us what 2018 meant to them and why the films that they loved affected them as much as they did. Got your own top 10? Send us your lists to @B4Cyborgs.
Annually when this list comes out there is always the mad scramble to watch as many releases as possible before the deadline and then to subsequently make the incredibly difficult decision to cut it down to just 10 films knowing that whatever is chosen will live on the internet for eternity.
In another instance of art imitating real life, we saw an amazing number of badass women on both sides of the camera (on behalf of my gender, I apologize the many men who were assholes on screen and off this year). Moves aimed at fostering diversity and new perspectives in film took an important step forward this year. The result is a whole lot of newcomers especially internationally occupying our lists where many of the old guard (Spielberg, The Coens) took a back seat to emerging new voices.
This year was about empathy and perseverance. It was an ode to family stretching beyond traditional genetic lines (Shoplifters, Support The Girls), a plea for open-mindedness to adventure and opposing viewpoints (The Night is Short, First Reformed) and a demonstration of the human resiliency in pursuit of dreams and love (Shirkers, Cold War, Annihilation). On the flip side, The best of 2018 also taught us cautionary lessons. Things are not always what they seem and not everything should not always be taken at face value (Burning) and while ambition should be admired, be wary of your actions and those they effect in the pursuit of said ambition (The Favourite).
My list (and even our collective list as a whole) is a reflection of the human condition. A call to action for all of us to be better. If 2018 wasn’t your year, don’t lose hope because 2019 might be.
2018 in film signifies a significant change within the industry for representation that audiences have been clamoring for. From the ongoing #OscarsSoWhite controversy of previous years, to the statistically proven underrepresentation of directors who are women or people of color, 2018 was the year where we started to hear more of those voices, and they were not quiet.
2018 was the year where directors of color finally got the opportunity to say “Enough is enough” and they created powerful hard-hitting works of art that gave a collective middle finger to the status quo that has attempted to keep them down for decades. Some of this year’s best films were from veteran directors including Spike Lee’s Blackkklansman, Steve McQueen’s Widows, Barry Jenkins’ If Beale Street Could Talk, as well as other acclaimed films such as Boots Riley’s Sorry to Bother You, George Tillman Jr.’s The Hate U Give, and Carlos Lopez Estrada’s Blindspotting took opportunities to not only tell stories that feature actors of color, but also speak to issues that directly affect their community as a whole that have gone largely ignored for far too long.
Amidst all of the political and racial turmoil that seemed to dominate most of the cinematic landscape, there also existed a plethora of movies that reminded us of the positivity and love that still exists in the world and the ideals that we should strive towards such as Won’t You Be My Neighbor?, Hearts Beat Loud, and Paddington 2. In the words of everyone’s favorite marmalade-loving bear, “If we’re kind and polite, the world will be right.”
If there is one single theme to my ten best films of the year it is surely that of the complex, beautiful and sometimes ugly thing that is humanity. Indeed in all these films a central character is human emotion which informs our perspective into these varying titles. From the touching documentaries (Andre The Giant and Won’t You Be My Neighbor?), the satirical portraits (The Death of Stalin and Vice) to the emotional portraits of love and loss (A Star is Born and Dogman), what all these films have accentuated is that the richest stories arise from an examination of our lives as human beings.
This past cinematic year has been a journey of eclectic human emotions and each of my picks has showcased these feelings in their own unique way. Whether it be a scathing and mocking look at Soviet totalitarianism, the redemptive tale of an elderly man running drugs, a good natured little bear and his family, or a dog groomer attempting to escape a vile influence, heart has been at the core of my list of films. They all collectively paint an image of good, evil, sadness and hope. We create art to express ourselves as sentient, emotional beings and I see my top 10 list as a fitting snapshot of human emotion and thought provoking excursions at the movies.
Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse
The Incredibles 2
Isle of Dogs
Solo: A Star Wars Story
Summer of 84
It should be mentioned that I have barely been keeping up enough with 2018 films and that I am largely unhappy with my 10 slots