The Best of the First Half of 2017


As I write every year around this point, time just flies, doesn’t it? We’re now about to hit July and officially enter into the second half of the year. That of course means one thing…it’s time for my mid year look at the best of the first half! As of the writing of this piece, I’ve seen about 130 movies so far in 2017, which is slightly less than normal for me. Still, it’s plenty and doesn’t really omit any huge early year releases. There are some upcoming July releases I’ve been unable to see so far, like A Ghost Story and Landline, but by and large, I’ve hit everything that needed to be hit in order to put together a decent list like the one you’re about to see.

Below you’ll see my rankings for everything that I’ve seen since the year began. Take special note, as I’ve thrown out my rules governing what to include and what not to. If I’ve seen it so far, it’s included, plain and simple. Mainly, I did that due to enthusiasm for a still unreleased title from the Tribeca Film Festival, as well as having just seen Spider-Man: Homecoming, as well as Ingrid Goes West and War for the Planet of the Apes. Some might call it cheating, but it’s my list, so I did as I pleased. Honestly, I think it helps round out things a bit more, but that’s just me. You’ll see what I mean momentarily…

Starting now, you’ll find my top ten of the year so far, along with a handful of my picks for the best in certain individual categories, as well as my awards for the first six months of 2017. Here you go, and as always, enjoy these handful of lists:

10. Flower
9. The Lego Batman Movie
8. Between Us
7. Wonder Woman
6. Dean
5. The Beguiled
4. Spider-Man: Homecoming
3. The Big Sick
2. Logan
1. The Hero

Honorable Mention: Baby Driver, The Discovery, Free Fire, Get Out, Gifted, I Don’t Feel At Home in This World Anymore, It Comes At Night, The Last Laugh, The Lost City of Z, Megan Leavey, Okja, and War for the Planet of the Apes

Next, the ten best performances of the first half of 2017:

10. Tom Holland in Spider-Man: Homecoming
9. Laura Prepon in The Hero
8. Hugh Jackman in Logan
7. Kate Mara in Megan Leavey
6. Zoe Kazan in The Big Sick
5. Patrick Stewart in Logan
4. Aubrey Plaza in Ingrid Goes West
3. Olivia Thirlby in Between Us
2. Zoey Deutch in Flower
1. Sam Elliott in The Hero

Honorable Mention: Billy Crudup in Youth in Oregon, Ben Feldman in Between Us, Adam Goldberg in Between Us, Jake Johnson in Win It All, Daphne Keene in Logan, Frank Langella in Youth in Oregon, Melanie Lynsky in I Don’t Feel At Home in This World Anymore, Rooney Mara in The Discovery, Nick Offerman in The Hero, Ray Romano in The Big Sick, Kristen Stewart in Personal Shopper, and Analeigh Tipton in Between Us

Now, on to the awards for the first half of the year so far…

(Obviously, my number one pick above would be my choice for Best Picture so far (with number two the runner up, and so on, but here are the other awards I would give out)

Best Director: James Mangold for Logan (runner up: Sofia Coppola for The Beguiled and Brett Haley for The Hero)

Best Actor: Sam Elliott for The Hero (runner up: Tom Holland for Spider-Man: Homecoming and Hugh Jackman for Logan)

Best Actress: Zoey Deutch for Flower (runner up: Aubrey Plaza for Ingrid Goes West and Olivia Thirlby for Between Us)

Best Supporting Actor: Best Supporting Actor: Patrick Stewart for Logan (runner up: Nick Offerman for The Hero and Ray Romano in The Big Sick)

Best Supporting Actress: Zoe Kazan for The Big Sick (runner up: Daphne Keen for Logan and Laura Prepon for The Hero)

Best Adapted Screenplay: Logan (runner up: The Beguiled and Spider-Man: Homecoming)

Best Original Screenplay: The Big Sick (runner up: Flower and The Hero)

Best Animated Feature: The Lego Batman Movie (runner up: Cars 3)

Best Documentary Feature: The Last Laugh (runner up: Nobody Speak: Trials of a Free Press and Risk)

Best Foreign Language Feature: Raw (runner up: Nobody Speak and Yourself and Yours)

Best Production Design: The Lost City of Z (runner up: Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 2. and Logan)

Best Cinematography: The Beguiled (runner up: The Hero and The Lost City of Z)

Best Costume Design: The Lost City of Z (runner up: The Beguiled and Spider-Man: Homecoming)

Best Film Editing: Logan (runner up: The Beguiled and The Hero)

Best Makeup: Logan (runner up: The Beguiled and Kong: Skull Island)

Best Sound: Spider-Man: Homecoming (runner up: Logan and War for the Planet of the Apes)

Best Original Score: The Hero (runner up: Logan and War for the Planet of the Apes)

Best Original Song: The Hero from The Hero (runner up: I Don’t Wanna Live Forever from Fifty Shades Darker)

Best Visual Effects: War for the Planet of the Apes (runner up: Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 2. and Spider-Man: Homecoming)

Best Ensemble: The Hero (runner up: The Big Sick and Between Us)

Quickly, in case you’re wondering, these are my least favorite films of the year so far, in order from worst to, well, slightly less terrible:

Nerdland
Fifty Shades Darker
The Clapper
Rings
The Boss Baby
Hermia and Helena
Fist Fight
Bitter Harvest
A Dog’s Purpose
The Great Wall

Let’s never speak of those flicks again…


Here’s to a great second half of the year!

About Joey Magidson

A graduate of Stony Brook University (where he studied Cinema and Cultural Studies), resides in Brooklyn, New York. He also contributes to several other film-related websites.

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