The forget-me-not films of 2018 — and the ones that deserve forgetting

This was a year of diverse milestones, but also immense failures

ae-astarisborn-courtesy

Despite Oscar buzz and mostly positive reviews, "A Star is Born" is one of the more surprising films to make it on our Forgotten Films columnist's list of 2018 movies that aren't worth remembering.

Courtesy Warner Bros.

Every year during awards season, utterances of “the best year for film” or “a year of new and complex stories” are commonly spoken by celebrities and critics alike. This year will most likely be no different, as a gargantuan number of films moved the medium forward. 

Many of them pushed boundaries, defied expectations and gave minority groups something to call their own. However, there are always the films that try to tear down that notion of a great year in film. Many of those films were controversial, derogatory or just plain boring from a storytelling perspective. 

In my opinion, these are the top five films of 2018 that should be remembered by audiences and — conversely — the top five films that are better off being forgotten.

Should not be forgotten:

1. “Black Panther”

“Black Panther” captivated the world in 2018. Not only did it become the first and only major blockbuster to star an African-American as a superhero, but it also featured a predominantly black cast. But the film was not just diverse in its casting — it showed costume design, writing and music that all represented complex elements of black culture. Rapper Kendrick Lamar produced a dynamite soundtrack with lyrics and music videos that unapologetically expressed black roots. This film proved to an industry that movies about minorities can be successful commercially and critically. 

2. “Love, Simon”

In the same vein as director John Hughes’ heterosexual love stories, Greg Berlanti’s romantic teen dramedy focused on a closeted teen’s experience with coming out. Tackling difficult topics like the moment someone comes out to a parent or their first friend, this film was something that made the LGBTQ community proud. There’s still a long way to go, but this film represents a step further to reaching equality for the LGBTQ community.

3. “A Quiet Place”

Never has the silence of a movie theater been used against the audience before, but John Krasinski changed that when he directed, wrote and starred in horror masterpiece “A Quiet Place” — the perfect movie for a dark theater. Despite Krasinski’s credits here, the real star of this film is Emily Blunt with her chemistry with her real-life husband, her acting range in the horror genre and her ability to hold a scream until the very last second. “A Quiet Place” should go down in history as on of the best horror movies of this generation. 

4. “Can You Ever Forgive Me?”

Melissa McCarthy is known to audiences as a comedian who uses her physique and wit to provoke laughs in any setting. However, McCarthy takes a dramatic turn in this true story about a writer down on her luck in 1990s New York City. A rare performance, viewers experience loneliness through the perspective of McCarthy’s character. For those wanting to see some iconic comedic chops, there’s plenty of those as well. Ultimately, though, the film is an affecting depiction of a recluse who spent years being dishonest with herself. 

5. “Annihilation”

Alex Garland’s newest film since “Ex Machina” did not disappoint. “Annihilation” combined the writer’s science fiction, horror and suspense with a cast of leading ladies trying to explore a disturbing scientific anomaly. It was a rare film with rare circumstances, making for an enjoyable time.

Should be forgotten:

1. “Suspiria” (2018)

This remake of the original 1977 horror classic, might make viewers feel sick, but not for the reasons a bloody flick normally would. Put simply, it’s a disgrace to Dario Argento’s legacy. The sliver of great stylistic choices was drowned out by over-explanation and a horrible ending. 

2. “The Happytime Murders”

Who actually saw this? Is it already forgotten? Melissa McCarthy should hope so, if she wants the Academy to consider her for an Oscar in “Can You Ever Forgive Me?”

3. “Mission: Impossible — Fallout”

Tom Cruise needs to stop making these movies, or he’s going to severely injure himself — again. No reasonable franchise has their best movie on the sixth try. Also, Henry Cavill has yet to prove that he makes anything better on screen.

4. “Crazy Rich Asians”

This film should not be on this list — it was a great win for representation on the big screen. However, as time passes, this film will be remembered for portraying Asian culture as only crazy and rich, as it lacks real substance. If these traits were all that the book portrayed, then this story should not have been one of the first mainstream movies with an all-Asian cast. So much promise gave so much disappointment. 

5. “A Star is Born” (2018)

Lady Gaga defined herself as a acting powerhouse in this film. Despite this, the film was cookie-cutter and will be forgotten — like all the other iterations before it. Can many people honestly say that they remembered “A Star Is Born” before the details about this remake was announced? If so, bravo! But, for good or for bad, this film will be forgotten.  

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