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Cult of Monster Lifers’ Top 10 Films of 2016!

30 December 2016

After much deliberation and the odd sacrificial offering, our Cult of Monster lifers have each selected their Top 10 Films of 2016!

Neil
(In No Particular Order)
RAW
SUNTAN
THE EYES OF MY MOTHER
HUNT FOR THE WILDERPEOPLE
THE AUTOPSY OF JANE DOE
THE NEON DEMON
DEAD HANDS DIG DEEP
SYMPATHY FOR THE DEVIL: THE TRUE STORY OF THE PROCESS CHURCH OF THE FINAL JUDGEMENT
THE REVENANT
THE HATEFUL EIGHT

Grant
1. RAW
2. THE NEON DEMON
3. THE GREASY STRANGLER
4. HUNT FOR THE WILDERPEOPLE
5. SUNTAN
6. THE EYES OF MY MOTHER
7. ZERO DAYS
8. FREE FIRE
9. THE WITCH
10. DEAD HANDS DIG DEEP

Kier-La
(In No Particular Order)
ALWAYS SHINE
THE UNTAMED
I, OLGA HEPNAROTOV
CHILDHOOD OF A LEADER
THE AUTOPSY OF JANE DOE
TOWER
SYMPATHY FOR THE DEVIL: THE TRUE STORY OF THE PROCESS CHURCH OF THE FINAL JUDGEMENT
ELLE
CHRISTINE
I AM NOT A SERIAL KILLER

Ben
1. GREEN  ROOM
Petrol stealing punk bands often get poorly treated in films, and Green Room is no exception. These poor, hygienically challenged, musically dubious, hardcore rockers get shot, stabbed, hacked, bitten, punched, kicked, choked and all sorts of other awesomely horrendous shit. It’s fucking awesome. Same guy made BLUE RUIN (2013) and his day job is as a 2nd unit camera guy for Oprah, so, you know, he’s awesome.

2. BLOOD FATHER
Mel Gibson plays an old, alcoholic ex-con who lives in a trailer next door to William H. Macey and spends most of his days tattooing redneck scum, but then suddenly turns into a badass that takes on a bunch of Latino gang bangers in order to save a daughter he hasn’t seen in 10 years. Honestly, they had me at ‘lives in a trailer next to William H. Macey’. It’s like they wrote this movie for me and didn’t give a shit about anyone else. Happy 2016 Ben, from Hollywood.

3. FREE FIRE
Incompetents with smart mouths and guns is my favourite sub-genre of film, after female cops who have to go undercover as strippers or prostitutes to find serial killers.

4. APRIL AND THE EXTRAORDINARY WORLD
Watching ROGUE ONE, I realised that if I was 10, I would have loved the shit out of that film, but not so much now. I guess I’m too old for these films, and that they’re not for me anymore  (Maybe if they’d included some cops going undercover as strippers or incompetents with smart mouths and guns… ). Watching APRIL AND THE EXTRAORDINARY WORLD – a French animated kids film about a girl who grows up in a world stuck in the steam age as all the scientists (including her parents) have been kidnapped, and no one is left to invent anything new – makes all of that shit I just said about ROGUE ONE complete nonsense. It’s not that I’m too old for STAR WARS, it’s that STAR WARS is kind of shit now. ROGUE ONE should be for 37 year old me just as much as it should be for 10 year old me. APRIL AND THE EXTRAORDINARY WORLD is. It’s ace. You should watch it. It’s on iTunes and DVD.

5. THE GREASY STRANGLER
Like Mary Poppins, THE GREASY STRANGLER is practically perfect in every way

6. DEADPOOL
Blind people putting together Ikea furniture is pretty funny. Plus Negasonic Teenage Warhead. Boom!

7. THE NICE GUYS
Nothing beats good 70’s LA noir. Also, more incompetents with smart mouths and guns.

8. (BROTHERS) GRIMSBY
This movie was shit. Parts of it made me laugh so hard I thought I was going to puke, then suffocate then puke again. But the rest was shit.

9. FREAKS OF NATURE
Zombies Vs Vampires Vs Humans Vs Aliens. Shakespeare on his best day could not have come up with a better concept to please the unwashed masses (That’s right Willy, I’m biting my fucking thumb at you, Sir!). Mackenzie Davis is always great to watch, and this movie is a super fun way to spend a couple of hours. Plus there were less eye-rolling-‘please just get on with it’-moments than in the similarly themed SCOUTS GUIDE TO THE ZOMBIE APOCALYPSE (2015).

10. NEVER BACK DOWN: NO SURRENDER
Michael Jai White is the king of DTV martial arts films. After BLOOD & BONE (2009) I didn’t think it could get any better, and it kind of doesn’t, but NEVER BACK DOWN: NO SURRENDER (White’s second appearance in the NEVER BACK DOWN franchise) is pretty darn close, which is good enough for me.

Jarret
1. ANOMALISA
It’s damn near impossible for me to articulate how passionately I feel about this film. I caught it on opening night in New York back in January and after leaving the cinema I was a mess of emotions and wonderment, seemingly this stop motion feature had bleed more feeling from me than any other character-driven drama I had seen in a number of years.

2. SWISS ARMY MAN
This highly stylised tale of a man and a cadaver is as hilarious as it is heartwarming and by far the best bromance of 2016!

3. GREEN ROOM
Edge of your seat is an understatement, I was literally hanging from a fibre of the fabric of a chair at Cinema Nova when I watched this. Easily the best suspense-driven thriller of 2016! Nazi Punks F*ck Off!

4. THE GREASY STRANGLER
No word of a lie, I have seen THE GREASY STRANGLER more times than any other film this year and that’s testament to the fact of its infinite replay value. It’s bold, awkward, instantly infectious and above all hilarious!

5. HELL OR HIGH WATER
A slow burn character-driven crime drama that is as gritty as it is engaging. If I were a film this is what I’d want to be!

6. THE REVENANT
Reaffirmation that truly great cinema can still be authored in this day and age.

7. PETE’S DRAGON
Surprisingly more emotional and heartfelt than the recent slew of studio and indie dramas, Disney’s latest reimagining of their classic PETE’S DRAGON proves to be their best yet!

8. HUNT FOR THE WILDERPEOPLE
The only people who would question why this is on my Top 10 of 2016 are folks who haven’t seen it.

9. THE NICE GUYS
Shane Black’s witty neo-noir crime caper oozes with style that is only comparable to the chemistry of its two leads, Russell Crowe & Ryan Gosling.

10. TRAIN TO BUSAN
For fear of using the term ‘character-driven’ for the third time in my Top 10 this year, I’ll refrain…or will I? TRAIN TO BUSAN harks back to the Romero school of character development/investment that was present in his original trilogy with the narrative urgency of more contemporary works like 28 DAYS LATER & WORLD WAR Z.

Jarret’s Honourable Mentions: THE AUTOPSY OF JANE DOE, DEAD HANDS DIG DEEP, NOCTURNAL ANIMALS, EDDIE THE EAGLE & I AM NOT A SERIAL KILLER.