Year in Review: 2017

My complete 2017 Watchlist, Ranked
(Films seen in theaters or festivals in 2017)

Films qualify for my Best of 2017 when the country of origin’s initial commercial release occurs in 2017. Unreleased films and festival only release are not considered.

TOP 17 of ’17:

  1. Twin Peaks: The Return (David Lynch, May 21, USA)
  2. Song to Song (Terrence Malick, March 17, USA)
  3. Phantom Thread (Paul Thomas Anderson, December 25, USA)
  4. On the Beach at Night Alone (Hong Sang-soo, March 23, South Korea)
  5. A Ghost Story (David Lowery, July 7, USA)
  6. The Square (Ruben Ostlund, August 25, Sweden)
  7. The Lost City of Z (James Gray, April 14, USA)
  8. Good Time (Safdie Brothers, August 11, USA)
  9. The Florida Project (Sean Baker, October 6, USA)
  10. Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri (Martin McDonagh, November 10, USA)
  11. The Killing of a Sacred Deer (Yorgos Lanthimos, October 20, USA)
  12. Logan (James Mangold, March 3, Canada/USA/Australia)
  13. Western (Valeska Grisebach, August 24, Germany)
  14. Call Me By Your Name (Luca Guadagnino, November 24, Italy/France/Brazil/USA)
  15. Shape of Water (Guillermo del Toro, December 22, USA)
  16. Lucky (John Carroll Lynch, September 22, USA)
  17. In the Fade (Fatih Akin November 23, Germany/France)
    * Hong Sang-soo’s Claire’s Camera does not make the list, as it will be released in 2018.

TOP (5) Films Without Distribution (Festival Only Releases):

  1. Luk’Luk’I (Wayne Wapeemukwa)
  2. Prototype (Blake Williams)
  3. Fail to Appear (Antoine Bourges)
  4. Never Steady, Never Still (Kathleen Hepburn)
  5. Lowlife (Ryan Prows)

TOP (3) Foreign Language Film:

  1. On the Beach at Night Alone (Hong Sang-soo)
  2. The Square (Ruben Ostlund)
  3. Western (Valeska Grisebach)

TOP (3) Directors:

  1. David Lynch (Twin Peaks: The Return)
  2. Paul Thomas Anderson (Phantom Thread)
  3. Hong Sang-soo (On the Beach at Night Alone)

TOP (3) Cinematographers:

  1. Emmanuel Lubezki (Song to Song)
  2. Darius Khondji (The Lost City of Z)
  3. Sean Price Williams (Good Time)

Top (3) Editors:

  1. Dylan Tichenor (Phantom Thread)
  2. Ben Safdie, Ronald Bronstein (Good Time)
  3. Jon Gregory (Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri)

TOP (3) Screenplays:

  1. David Lynch, Mark Frost, Harley Peyton (Twin Peaks: The Return)
  2. Martin McDonagh (Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri)
  3. Ruben Ostlund (The Square)

TOP (3) Soundtracks:

  1. Oneohtrix Point Never (Good Time)
  2. Daniel Hart (A Ghost Story)
  3. Twin Peaks: The Return)

TOP (3) Actors:

  1. Kyle Maclachlan (Twin Peaks: The Return)
  2. Casey Affleck (A Ghost Story)
  3. Gary Oldman (Darkest Hour)

TOP (3) Actresses:

  1. Kim Min-hee (On the Beach at Night Alone)
  2. Saoirse Ronan (Lady Bird)
  3. Margot Robbie (I, Tonya)

Top (3) Supporting Actors:

  1. Sam Rockwell (Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri)
  2. Ben Safdie (Good Time)
  3. Willem Dafoe (The Florida Project)

TOP (3) Supporting Actresses:

  1. Allison Janney (I, Tonya)
  2. Laurie Metcalf (Lady Bird)
  3. Lesley Manville (The Phantom Thread)

TOP (1) Documentary:

  1. Faces Places (Agnes Varda, JR)

TOP (5) Most Anticipated Films of 2018:

  1. Radegund (Terrence Malick)
  2. Ad Astra (James Gray)
  3. The Death and Life of John F. Donovan (Xavier Dolan)
  4. Annette (Leos Carax)
  5. First Reformed (Paul Schrader)




About Kamran Ahmed

I have a Masters in Cinema Studies from the University of Toronto. I work as a freelance writer and film critic in Vancouver. My writing is primarily distributed through Next Projection, an online film journal based in Toronto.
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