25 Dec 2017

The BoomBox Best Hollywood/International Movies 2017


The Boombox Best Hollywood/International Movies 2017 is not a comprehensive list. It is a selection from what I watched this year at the theaters.

Several US movies didn't make/are yet to make it to Indian theatres. As has been the case, many Oscar-winning movies release the forthcoming year, with posters proclaiming the Oscar nominations or wins. International movies apart from Hollywood releases rarely reach the big screens in my city.

The Hollywood year 2017 was a bombardment of popular superhero genre movies and some good drama. Despite the fading magic of wannabe blockbusters, there were some unforgettable movie theatre moments to relish.

The breathless gasp of the car chase and train collision in Logan, a refreshing, bumbling, awkward, error-prone teenage superhero in Spider-Man: Homecoming, the heart-stopping air fight in the supremely understated Dunkirk...

Traveling down to Mumbai to catch the last day, last show of Loving Vincent is my enduring memory of the magic of movies this year. Here are my picks:       


Christopher Nolan cuts through war movie tradition, sacrificing scale and epicness for the minor and microscopic details. In the confines of a sharply edited running time, he instead tells us why making it out alive is the biggest victory of all.

Reworking the pivotal World War II incident, Nolan revisits his famous non-linear narrative (best used in Memento) to cover a time-is-running-out war premise as fought over land, sea, and air. Tense and taut, the bloodlessness rankles, but the rest is masterful clever cinema.      

A dying superhero with waning powers has a final task to accomplish in an apocalyptic world. A road movie, a brutal, gruesome action thriller, Logan connects because of its identifiable human elements of mortality, companionship, imminent danger, death, loss of innocence and how the old make way to the new.

James Mangold gets Hugh Jackman to deliver his best and (poignantly) last performance as Wolverine. A feast to watch at theaters. No other superhero movie rivaled the Logan impact this year. Logan is up there in its populated genre if notches below The Dark Knight (2008).          


That Loving Vincent is the world's first completely oil-painted movie, four years in the making, combining 65000 oil-painted frames, 853 oil paintings, made by 125 artists, is a highly commendable achievement. The important thing was, will it work cohesively as a story? 

Retelling the final days of legendary painter Vincent van Gogh's life as a possible murder mystery, Loving Vincent is a gorgeous, heart-bleeding tribute to art, human fragility, and tragic genius. 

Loving Vincent does a rare thing, it unveils the passion, madness and to an extent, the soul of van Gogh. A sweet sadness and vindication linger at the end credits.

Art lovers, creative people, and artists will make a better connection. Mesmerizing on 70mm. Yes, Loving Vincent is our Best Boombox Hollywood/International Movie 2017

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