2015 is nearing its end. In just a matter of hours, we’ll be in the grips of January, the folds of 2016, and the glory of a new year. Bracing ourselves for a whole hoard of brand new movies, we’re reminiscent of the year. For cinema moguls and lovers worldwide, it has been a glorious years despite disappointing blockbusters. Indeed, the true majesty has come from independent films and quirky movies that have gripped us with their sterling tales, nestling in the unknown waiting for a critic – like me – to scoop it up, shove it in the face of the audience, screaming “LOOK, THESE ARE GREAT, GUYS!”
Luckily, I have five films you may have missed but they were stellar slice of this year that we all should recognise!
Carol Morley’s tale of mass hysteria that grips an all-girls school when one of its students dies is a spell-binding masterpiece of cinematic poetry. Proving that GAME OF THRONES star Maisie Williams is more than just Arya Stark (proved further by her amazing feat on DOCTOR WHO as immortal Ashildr), THE FALLING was an unsettling depiction of girlhood when pushed to devastating extremes. Morley offered a thrilling storyline with an emotional centre as audiences picked apart the scenes that they were seeing with an air of mysticism and psychological depth.
Dark, disturbing, and eloquent, Morley manages to mesmerise with her tale.
Michael Mann is a director that we all love for his stylish thrillers and framing of slick noir crime dramas. From MANHUNTER to HEAT, the Chicago born legend has immersed us in the gripping, engaging movies that skimmed our main attentions. BLACKHAT is exactly the same: Helmed by Chris Hemsworth, the movies saw computer hacker and convict try to hunt-down a cybercrime network as they grip the world in their mercy. Many have looked back at this and gone “actually, this was quite brilliant. Tense and alluring with a powerful performance by Hemsworth, it’s disappointing this was deleted from our memories…
A musical based on the infamous murders of sex workers in Ipswich doesn’t make for cinematic gold but pulled from an award-winning musical, this is a surprising film with the likes of Olivia Colman and Tom Hardy appearing. The music and lyrics come from actual interviews with the residents of the road, the themes present are filled with much more depth than “these women are dead, what a shame.” Showcasing the fear and the prejudice that romped throughout the community with more rage than the murders. With bittersweet music and poignancy weaved within, it’s an unusual but stirring treat for film fans.
X+Y (AKA A BRILLIANT YOUNG MIND)
Rafe Spall is Britain’s most underrated actor and everything that he has ever been in continues to prove that he is so much more than the chubby kid in SHAUN OF THE DEAD and the son of the acclaimed Timothy. In X+Y (A Brilliant Young Mind, for you American folks,) sees him steal the show as the wayward and down-heartened maths teacher Martin Humphreys who aides the intellect of autistic Nathan Ellis. With Nathan being played by young and soaring star Asa Butterfield, Morgan Matthews directs such a delicate yet enthralling film that, despite its maths heavy focus, evolves into this glorious study of the mind, love, and friendship.
Wildly underappreciated this year, and solidifying Ryan Reynolds return to the acting life – THE VOICES was an imaginative but heart-wrenching look at a lowly factory worker and his battle with schizophrenia. Director Marjane Satrapi and writer Michael R. Perry glorious flesh out this film that could’ve wavered into exploitation but happily marries black comedy and emotional depth. With Reynolds delivering his best performance to date, THE VOICES is a marriage of a life enhanced by colour due to the unhinged mind of Jerry. Despite being underseen, THE VOICES is still an off-kilter treat that should be seen by all (it’s on Netflix, by the way folks).