Best Films I’ve Seen in 2016 (Part 2)

Continuing from the last list, here are FIVE more of the best films I’ve in 2016. And there are even MORE honourable mentions. I just couldn’t leave any film out that I immensely enjoyed.

HONOURABLE MENTIONS: Evolution, Trash Fire, Kubo and the Two Strings, Sausage Party, Emi-Abi, Time Renegades, Mohican Comes Home

11. ONE NIGHT ONLY

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This was another huge surprise for me, since I knew nothing about it and I only watched it because it was a Taiwanese film, meaning it was a respite from terrible China-market fare. But the film was so unabashedly romantic and fantastical, that I was swept up by it, despite the contrivances and cliches. But the final act ties all of that, leading into an emotional finale that had me shed a tear or two.

It also helped that Aaron Kwok gives one of his best performances and Yang Zishan again showed why she’s a rising talent. A fantastic directorial debut from actor Matt Wu, who happens to be Yang’s husband. Who just so happened to having cast his wife as a hooker. Hmm…

I mean, where else will you get a romantic comedy/drama that has kickboxing, blindfolded drag-racing, gambling, hookers and references to Federico Fellini?

12. THE NICE GUYS

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Now this was a film that I was waiting for since it was given the greenlight and it was entirely worth the wait. Fantastic chemistry between Russell Crowe and a energetically comedic Ryan Gosling, a sharp and witty script from Shane Black and a star-making performance from fellow Aussie actress, Angourie Rice, makes this film one of the most fun films I’ve seen in 2016.

It’s a damn shame that very few people saw this film. We need more films like this.

Read the full review here.

13. SHIN GODZILLA

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When you hear that the creator of landmark anime series Neon Genesis Evangelion is going to make the latest Godzilla film, it is normal for one to just wig out at the news. And the the film arrived. And it left me breathless. It was almost nothing like I expected and yet, I was completely satisfied with the end result. Riotously satirical of democracy while providing a haunting metaphor for the natural disasters Japan had gone through, in addition to giving the best Godzilla action in recent memory, Shin Godzilla proves that reboots can still be great.

Read the full review here.

14. TOP KNOT DETECTIVE

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Now this was probably the biggest surprise for me this year. An extremely entertaining homage to cult TV shows before the rise of the Internet as well as shows/films showing on SBS. Clever, hilarious, ridiculous and surprisingly heartfelt, this is a mockumentary that more should watch. I really wish that Top Knot Detective was a real show and I really hope that the director’s next project (which is hinted at the end of the film) will come to fruition. For Australian viewers, it’s out on SBS On Demand, so please check it out. You will not regret it.

Read the full review here.

15. THE WAILING

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The most disturbing film I saw in 2016. I was left breathless, mindless and hopeless when I left the screening, and I loved it to death. The acting was spectacular, the mood and atmosphere was pitch-black and the vice-grip direction by Na Hong-jin was so incredibly effective that myself and another audience member yelled out “What the fuck?” several times during the screening I attended. No joke.

That’s not to say that there isn’t any humour in it, since there are many amusing asides like how a character constantly throws stones at the main lead, that had me laughing out loud.

Read the full review here.

To be continued…

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