It's still January dammit! Time for my quick awards of 2017.
As far as movies went, 2017 was an...odd year. For one thing, it seemed the beginning half was a lot stronger than movies released in the second half, as in the later part of the year I was waiting for decent films to come out and wasn't going to the cinema so often. A lot of times a movie or remake came out which made me go 'why did they decide to (re)make this'? This didn't necessarily mean a movie was good or bad, it's just the decision-making itself that was baffling. Case in point: Beauty & the Beast, Power Rangers, Baywatch, Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle...
As for me, well, I discovered Synthwave. I had always had some sort of love and respect for early 80s New Wave and Electronica, so to find out several independent artists decided to do their own spin on the genre and even mixing in modern technology...Heaven!
Musical Artists to recommend: Isidor, Tokyo Rose, Synthatiger, Dynatron.
Best Surprise Movie: 'Split', a true return to form for M. Night Shyamalan (finally!)
Movie I did not expect to love so much: 'Blade Runner 2049'. I don't believe anyone had really been asking for a sequel to Blade Runner, apart from a few die-hard fans. Saying that though, this movie was so good it blew the previous installment out of the water and cements Denis Villeneuve as the greatest director of the decade.
Favourite movie of the year: 'Wonder Woman'. I wasn't sure if I should pick this or 'Blade Runner 2049', so I will say that the latter is probably 2017's "best" movie in terms of objective quality, but for me, a favourite movie has to be one I re-watch, so since I have 'Wonder Woman' on Blu-Ray, that one counts. (Having re-watched it though, I just realised how rushed the lead-up to the entry into No-Man's Land was, ah well.)
Best popcorn flick: 'Kong: Skull Island'. This movie was so much better than it had any right to be and I had a great time watching it.
Best unknown movie: 'When a Monster Calls'. Eleanor and I managed to watch this completely by luck. It's a movie with a very constricted and limited release and it's a very heartfelt movie that reduced me to tears, worth watching.
The movie that was exactly what I wanted and paid for: Dual winners for this one! 'Molly's Game' and 'Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2'. The movies were exactly how you would expect them to be based on the trailers.
I also can't help but notice how film soundtracks are a lot more reliant on classic 70s rock these days.
I also found myself watching lots more TV this year...which would explain why I haven't been gaming much. A while ago, I noticed I didn't bother with TV and preferred gaming, but now it's the other way around. Ah well, we'll see how long this lasts. However...
Favourite game I played in 2017: 'Mother Russia Bleeds'. It's so nice to play an impossibly hard Nintendo-type 16-bit beat-em' up again. Saying that, the game wasn't actually impossible, you just really needed to understand the controls and timing. I laughed and felt very smug when I noticed people's complaints of how hard the game was and how badly they had struggled XD. Also, the game borderlines comedic in its portrayal of a society going to sh**.
Best TV Show: 'Orville'. Although it wasn't going to be much of a surprise.
Best original premise: 'Fresh off the Boat'. This show aired its 3rd season this year, but I really enjoyed it. I mean, it's about time that we had a TV show that followed the lives of a Chinese-American family with all of them having interesting characters and personalities. There is also a lot of criticism of how mainstream American society handles certain topics.
TV Show I'm excited to see the ending for...but am concerned about its dip in quality: 'Game of Thrones'. Though in its defence, from a purely production standpoint, it must be exhausting to script, film then edit. I hope the year's hiatus will do it good.