2017 has seen some fantastic films with humble beginnings go on to find huge audiences, from Get Out to Girls Trip, Baby Driver to the remake of Stephen King’s It; this is Hungry Eye’s recommended Top 10 films to look out for in the remaining months of 2017, some of which may be overlooked, in no particular order.
Some of these films have already been released, and are available to see in cinemas now.
- God’s Own Country
It has been said God’s Own Country is ‘Brokeback Mountain for the Yorkshire Moors’. Comparisons to Ang Lee’s masterpiece is impressive for a director’s first feature debut (Francis Lee), and will surely draw more attention to it’s rising stars (Josh O’Connor and Alec Secareanu). Tender and quietly powerful, Gods Own Country is a must-see for anyone with an interest in burgeoning British talent in the film industry.
- A Ghost Story
David Lowery has reunited the cast of his second feature Ain’t Them Bodies Saints (2013), Rooney Mara and Casey Affleck, for his 2017 film A Ghost Story. The film follows Mara and Affleck as a couple torn apart by unforeseen circumstances. Despite the basic plot, the film asks a lot of big questions about life, death, philosophy and existentialism whilst maintaining a hauntingly beautiful veneer that promises to stay with the viewer.
- The Beguiled
The Beguiled is director Sofia Coppola’s first film since the divisive A Very Murray Christmas (2015). A remake of a Clint Eastwood movie from 1971, The Beguiled follows a group of women in a girls school in Virginia during the American Civil War, whose repressed and somewhat monotonous lives are turned upside down with the arrival of the handsome yet sly Colin Farrell. With stellar performances all filmed in the soft, dreamy style Coppola has become known for; The Beguiled offers an empowered remake that is thought provoking whilst being thrilling and entertaining.
- Ingrid Goes West
Produced by and starring Aubrey Plaza, Ingrid Goes West has been described as a movie for the social media age, both able to criticise social media platforms (particularly Instagram) and give an insight into the aspects that make it good. Plaza plays anti-hero Ingrid Thorburn, who makes it her mission to become friends with Instagram ‘influencer’ Taylor Sloane (Elizabeth Olsen). Darkly funny, insightful and wickedly acted, Ingrid Goes West should be on everyone’s radar. Released in the UK on the 17th November.
- Wind River
Taylor Sheridan, writer and director of Sicario (2015) and last years awards contender Hell or High Water (2016), returns this year with Wind River. Wind River is an atmospheric murder mystery set in the Wind River Indian Reservation in Wyoming. Starring Jeremy Renner and Elizabeth Olsen (giving a starkly different performance in this movie compared to Ingrid Goes West), Wind River is a type of film we don’t really see anymore, a throwback to films like Mystic River (2003), Zodiac (2007), and even Se7en (1995) where the location is used to such an extent it almost feels like a character in the movie. Brutal with a surprisingly important message, Wind River is a tense action-packed thriller that is worth your time and money.
- The Big Sick
The Big Sick, produced by Judd Apatow and written by Kumail Nanjiani and Emily V. Gordon, is the story about how the two married writers met. Personal, moving and very funny, the film is marked with the trademark humour of Apatow but with the fresh voice and insight of Nanjiani and Gordon. To all intents and purposes it is a rom-com, but the perspective of a Pakistani Muslim immigrant as the leading man results in a genre film that’s updated with a much-needed injection of modernity.
- The Red Turtle
This silent animation produced by famous Japanese film studio Studio Ghibli follows a nameless man as he wakes up stranded on a deserted island. As he tries various means to escape, he finds his plans thwarted by the presence of a female red turtle. Made in 2016 with a later release date in the UK, it may not have won the Oscar for best animation, but it has gone on to become one of the best movies of 2017.
- Call Me by Your Name
Call Me by Your Name has become one of the highest rated films of the year, based on the novel of the same name by Andre Aciman. With stand out performances already gaining Oscar buzz for Armie Hammer and Timothée Chalamet, this sun-drenched 80’s love story is due to be released in the UK on the 27th October.
- The Killing of a Sacred Deer
Yorgos Lanthimos is best known for his 2015 film The Lobster. He brings back Colin Farrell in a film that is shrouded in mystery – all that is known is that Colin Farrell’s character, a surgeon, forms a bond with a sinister teenage boy, with disastrous results. Anyone familiar with The Lobster will know to expect the unexpected, extremely dark humour, and importantly, it asks questions of the audience and expects them to be able to form their own answers. It’s UK release date is slated for November 17th.
- The Shape of Water
The anticipation for Guillermo Del Toro’s latest film The Shape of Water is huge, and rightfully so. To most he is best known for either Hellboy (2004), Hellboy II: The Golden Army (2008), or Blade II (2002), but to everyone else he is known for the 2006 dark fantasy fairytale Pan’s Labyrinth. Del Toro has dabbled in blockbusters since (including a much publicized leave of 2012’s The Hobbit trilogy, resulting in the studios having to last-minute bring back Peter Jackson to complete what Del Toro had started in production), but this appears to be the first film that continues the style and themes of Pan’s Labyrinth. Both appear to be a fairy tale, set in a different time period (Pan’s Labyrinth was set during just after the Spanish civil war in 1944, The Shape of Water is set in Cold War era America in 1963), and each follows a lonely and isolated female protagonist as she makes a discovery that changes the course of their lives forever. Dark, tender, and beautifully made, The Shape of Water looks like a much-needed return to form for the Mexican director.
Think of any more we may have missed? Comment below and let us and everyone else know!
By Elle Jepson