Hbox's Flick Picks from 2018
February 20 2019
So who are the people who judge the Oscars? Who are these faceless voters who decide the best films of the year? After one minute of intensive research, I discovered that these pretentious so-called movie experts are members of the Academy - actors, directors, makeup artists, writers, and these 6,300 biased hacks decide single-handedly which films are nominated.
Well, we here at Team Liquid have something better. We have Hungrybox. And his opinion on the best films of 2018 are undoubtedly less biased and more expertly crafted than these “Academy members.” While Hbox has admitted to not having viewed many of the dramas that are up for awards this year (although he plans to watch them eventually), he has still seen some pretty fucking awesome films, and he’s here to tell you what they are.
But let’s be real. Do you really want to watch a two hour expository-heavy drama about a failing newspaper fumbling with some papers, or do you want to watch Spider-Man turn into dust in Stark’s arms?
“Movies are a combined team effort,” Hbox said of his passion for movie reviews. “I have always loved watching movies, especially ones nominated for an award, and after reading the reviews. That’s a big hobby for me. If I see 30 critics from all around the world saying a movie is incredible, I feel I have to go see it. I usually agree with critics 90 percent of the time, and listening to their judgement has led me to see movies that changed my outlook on life.”
Okay, so maybe it’s good to see both of those films.
Hungrybox’s Best Films of 2018
Avengers: Infinity War
"This world is getting more and more intricate now, while still remaining entertaining and funny. Marvel is really achieving a new standard in cinema, and Black Panther was no different. There was great cinematographic effects, and it touched upon a lot of societal themes we’re currently facing. These films are a great platform for that. They were great films, used responsibly.
It also sparked more memes than I could have ever imagined, and divided the internet. Thanos was my favorite, the absolute ultra villain. He wanted to balance out of the universe via genocide, but it seemed he was doing it for a cause he felt was noble. It asked the question: Does every crazy evil person have a noble idea in mind, or are they just fucking crazy?
They called me Thanos at Smash Summit 6. I guess they want me to be the villain. So fuck it. I get a ring on my finger every time I beat someone. "
Mission Impossible: Fallout
"The first two Mission Impossibles were kind of cheesy. But the third set them apart — it was darker, more serious. The fourth, fifth and sixth were the best action movies I’ve ever seen. Bar none. It’s about the build up. The intensity. The absolute ridiculousness. There were helicopters rolling off a cliff, facial effects… Tom Cruise managing to save the world… They’re always sort of cheesy, but they play off of it so well and do it in a refreshing way. The advanced visual tricks are so entertaining to the audience. "
"This movie is heavy. It really just fucks with your head in a lot of ways. You leave that movie feeling super uncomfortable. It’s creepy, extremely dark, and there’s almost no resolution. The film has a conclusion, but it really makes you wonder what direction our planet is heading in. How much control does the world really have? And the sound effects were horribly intense. It was nice to see Natalie Portman in a leading role. "
Crazy Rich Asians
"It was a groundbreaking film, a rom com done in such a unique way. It wasn’t cheesy, and it was visually stunning. It had great cinematography, a good adapted screenplay. It really gave you a taste of how different this culture was from ours. There was hyperbole, like in any film, but it still accurately portrayed the life of the ultra wealthy in Singapore. I only went to it because everyone was talking about it, but it was actually really good. "
"This is a movie about four women who have to steal money from a politician after their husbands are all murdered. And there are so many twists. So many things you didn’t expect. It was a very refreshing movie with a pretty original concept. There are a lot of movies about revenge and heists, but the action in this movie was unique, how things unfolded. It really made you wonder who the villain was throughout the entire movie. "
Isle of Dogs
"This is as Wes Anderson as it gets. It’s a movie about a little boy trying to save dogs in Japan. It’s quirky, funny, wholesome, and it’s completely and wildly original. I could watch it 10 times in a row. Anderson’s style with the soft cream palette, the nonsecular tones, the quirky script… It’s become his staple. This movie just speaks to the talent of the people involved. "
"I just watched this on a whim and I was blown away. The entire film is shown through screens, but it’s incredibly modern, compared to most found footage films. It also really showed the facade of social media, providing a really profound commentary. So little of what you see online is what’s happening in the background. That left me thinking. I would recommend this movie to everyone. It was satisfying, intense, and had a lot of twists. You never knew the full details until you get to the end. It’s a dope movie. "
"It was great. I loved the twist there, where the mom is the main superhero. That was pretty cool. The message of family in there... The original will never be topped, though. "
Sometimes the classics are just better. Here are Hungrybox’s three favorite films of all time:
"There’s no filler. Every scene is quick. You can’t keep your eyes away. It’s funny, the zooming… It’s not a typical film that goes scene, plot, dialogue… The entire two and a half hours is narrated through a voice… It’s like you’re at a dinner table talking to a guy who has your complete attention. This was one of the original mafia movies that really showed what that culture was like. It really showed the brutality. Just when you think you have people you can trust - it can go sour so quickly. "
No Country For Old Men (2007)
"He’s just psychotic. I’ve never seen someone play a role of insanity that well. It was honestly terrifying. If you saw a person like that in real life you’d run for your life. "
The Dark Knight (2008)
"This is the best superhero movie ever made. It’s crime and mystery meets superhero, directed by Christopher Nolan. It just came out so well. It had this dark tone. And Heath Ledger as the Joker. That role will never be that good again. Stunning camera work. I watched this film at a very important part of my life, and I resonated with the anti-hero, who hated himself. But that’s what you want in a film — you want to learn a lesson and think about things in a different way. That’s what art should do. "
Best Villain: Heath Ledger’s Joker
Best Horror Film: The Shining
Best Classic Film: Godfather Part II
Best Movie Adaption of a Video Game: Super Mario Bros.
Best Children’s Movie: Paddington Bear
Best Pixar Films: Toy Story 3, Wall-E, Up
While Hungrybox stated that he purposely avoids seeing a movie in theaters if it receives bad reviews (for him, it would feel like a waste of time), he does admit he has seen some real stinkers so god-damn putrid that he would rather watch his early career losses at Gigabits on repeat. At least that had some lessons to be learned, some experience to be gained.
Here’s one series of shitstorms that stands out to him:
"These films are the scum of the earth. They’re fucking awful. They’re the pop-country of films. I hate cash grabs. It just feels like there’s no point in watching it. I’m not gaining anything. There’s explosions, titties, horrible dialogue, horrible acting… Why am I watching this? I hate any cheesy film that relies too much on tropes. You need originality. These days it’s so easy to stream movies and TV shows, so you need to be good at what you do to stand out, more than ever. "