Best Films of 2018

2018 has been a wild year for film, from wildly entertaining sequels (see Mamma Mia: Here We Go Again and Paddington 2) to Yorgos Lanthimos’ latest in dry, yet tragic, humor to a horror film featuring tongue clicking, a nut allergy, and dead pigeons. It has been year for powerful women, both in front of and behind the camera, from the women of Annihilation to Crystal Moselle and her look into the world of women skateboarders. It has been a year to interrogate representations of masculinity, from Joe in You Were Never Really Here to Reverend Toller in First Reformed. It has been a year of terror, love, laughter, and exhaustion, both literally and cinematically. The films of 2018 truly captured the strange and turbulent atmosphere that has thrown us all into a state of near-constant anxiety.

The Much Ado team has relished in this anxiety, seeing many of 2018’s best, and worst films with the help of film festivals such as Cannes, NYFF, and BFI, MoviePass (RIP), and AMC Stubs A-List. After much deliberation, Letterboxd rankings, and last-minute trips to the cinema, we present Much Ado’s top 25 films of the year.

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Cannes 2018 Review: ‘Cold War’

A standout scene from Paweł Pawlikowski’s Cold War involves a simple song and dance. No words are spoken, but nothing needs to be said—the actions speak volumes. Zula (Joanna Kulig) is looking defeated at the bar, embittered by her lover Wiktor (Tomsz Kot) ignoring her. The smooth baritone of Bill Haley suddenly blares through the club’s speakers. Zula quickly gets up and drunkenly dances with feverish energy, moving from man to man, and then on top of the bar, much to the chagrin of Wiktor. Music becomes a source of liberation. If Zula is drifting from the jazz leanings of her lover, is she drifting from him as well? The scene unfolds in a transfixing single take—a fleeting moment of chaotic serenity.

cold war
Joanna Kulig in ‘Cold War’ © Amazon Studios/Curzon Artificial Eye

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