My Own Damn Movie Awards for 2019

Another year of overkill time spent on movie consumption. Here’s my own damn list of favorites for 2019…

Best Pictures of 2019

  1. Avengers: Endgame (Best Picture, Best Visuals)
  2. The Irishman (Best Screenplay, Best Director)
  3. The Lighthouse
  4. The Last Black Man in San Francisco
  5. The Farewell
  6. Honey Boy
  7. Parasite
  8. Ford v Ferrari (Best Sound)
  9. Us
  10. Dolemite Is My Name

Honorable Mentions: Apollo 11, Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker, 1917, The Peanut Butter Falcon, Marriage Story, Once Upon a Time… in Hollywood, Booksmart, Ad Astra, Knives Out, Toy Story 4

Best Actresses of 2019

  1. Lupita Nyong’o – Us
  2. Awkwafina – The Farewell
  3. Ana de Armas – Knives Out
  4. Scarlett Johansson – Marriage Story
  5. Saoirse Ronan – Little Women
  6. Beanie Feldstein – Booksmart

Best Actors of 2019

  1. Adam Driver – Marriage Story
  2. Noah Jupe – Honey Boy
  3. Willem Dafoe – The Lighthouse
  4. Kang-Ho Song – Parasite
  5. Jimmie Fails – The Last Black Man in San Francisco
  6. Christian Bale – Ford v Ferrari

Considering how much happened, I’m actually pretty surprised I was able to see as much as I did this last year. Of course, I didn’t get to see everything and there was some stuff I just refused to watch, but I got around to most of it, without a doubt. Let’s go through the top five from 2019.

I connected with The Farewell on far too many personal levels that triggered a bunch of negative emotions. At the end, I was left angry, confused, and ready to move on. I know that doesn’t sound like a ringing endorsement, but it was therapy to feel like there was someone or something out there that empathized with me.

The Last Black Man in San Francisco lets you stew in the suffering from the painful affects of gentrification. Joe Talbot and Jimmie Fails have made quite the ode to a city they clearly love. It’s gorgeously shot, wonderfully acted, and I can’t wait to see more.

Want to take a ride into madness? Well The Lighthouse has you covered. It starts you off right with some laughs before you descend down this bleak, disgusting, black and white horror show. When you do eventually pop out, you’ll be happy you did so with your sanity.

Scorsese just makes it look too easy now, creating a three and a half hour movie with not a single minute of waste. De Niro, Pacino, and Pesci continuously and effortlessly prove they’re masters of their art. The Irishman a colossal piece of cinema that is, hands down, the best single move of the year.

Yet, there’s something that deserves more accolades…

Look, imagine a nine-year-old Richie. He endlessly escapes to his room reading funny books about people with super powers who save humanity from the forces of evil. If you would have told that kid in 30 years, all of those stories were going to come to life on the big screen, the joy would have been so unimaginable that he simply wouldn’t have believed it… but they did come to life.

This acclaim isn’t for a single flick, but a 22 film odyssey that started more than 10 years ago. The grand adventure that is the Marvel Cinematic Universe has been an absolute delight to be a part of. Entirely unrivaled in cinematic storytelling, there’s no words that could ever underscore its achievement. But part of the journey is the end and that’s what we get with Avengers: Endgame.

Starting with tragedy and loss and how all of these broken characters have chose to grieve from the events of Infinity War, we move onto what is essentially a heist flick with all of the heart and humor you’d expect from a Marvel Studio movie. At the very climax, finally, our Avengers Assemble in an epic battle with thousands on screen. It’s a testament to the MCU that every person in the audience could call out the names of every single one of those thousands. There was the monumental challenge of effectively and thoughtfully closing the arcs for some of the most loved characters. Tony is finally given the chance to prove he can be a selfless hero. Thor, with all of his loss and grief, crawls out of the mud and finds an identity. And Cap, the guy who’s given everything for the things he’s believed and has shown time and time again he’d die for others finally goes and does something for himself; the man out of time finds his way home.

I’m in awe this film could exist at all and astonished the most anticipated flick of all time could still smash my expectations. It sets the bar so high that I can’t see there ever being another superhero movie to stand with it. Endgame was cathartic and satisfying and everything we deserved. I’m heartbroken it’s over, but overjoyed it happened.