Another year of cinema and filmmaking has come and gone, and what a year it was. A trip to the new normal after the COVID years has provided many a fresh and unique film this film, whether that’s been on the big screen or on the smaller one in homes. It’s been a record breaking year for cinema in many areas, there’s been hits, there’s been misses but let’s take a look at my 10 favourite films of 2022!
10. Cha Cha Real Smooth
Apple TV+ feels like it is lagging a long way behind other streaming services but every now and then it pops up with a gem, CODA was an obvious huge success after winning the Best Picture Oscar earlier in 2022, early word of mouth was very positive for Cha Cha Real Smooth after it’s appearance at festivals, and despite people not talking about it as much as they would’ve hoped. Writer, director and actor Cooper Raiff does a great job delivering this wholesome and just nice film as he makes friends with a woman and her daughter.
If I ever see a film with a similar animation to Spider-Man: Into the Spiderverse I’m going to check it out. A simple, creative, animated romance for adults? Who would’ve thought. A fantastic cast helps deliver this incredibly beautiful animation style and art. The film also has fantastic music, and use of music having been created by Kid Cudi who also wrote the story for the film, and voices the lead character, along with a voice cast that includes Timothee Chalamet, Laura Harrier, Jaden Smith, Vanessa Hudgens, Keith David, Macauley Culkin and Jessica Williams.
I’m a big fan of the Predator franchise, something about the Predator’s gets me excited and I love to see how people try to take them down and how they take people down. The Predator might have been a disappointment, but Prey is a fresh, unique take on the franchise, placing the Predator back in time as it tries to take on a Native American who is training to take on her biggest threat. Dan Trachtenberg delivers another film which could revitalise a franchise after his success with 10 Cloverfield Lane.
7. Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery
Rian Johnson is one of my favourite people working in Hollywood. He is creative and knows exactly how to tell a story which lends itself perfectly to the murder mystery genre. Knives Out was a huge, huge hit and I was worried when the sequels were bought up by Netflix, but I’m extremely glad they put it out into cinemas across the world, even if it was just for a week. Daniel Craig returns, clearly having so much fun and will go down as a lot of people’s favourite fictional detectives. Another all star cast and tightly written script means Glass Onion is a much watch of the year.
6. She Said
She Said is a gripping film about the journalists who uncovered and ignited the movement against Harvey Weinstein. A tense, uncomfortable watch sometimes can deliver, especially when it has strong performances from Zoe Kazan and Carey Mulligan, handling such a difficult but important matter. A well made film from director Maria Schrader, who had balances the tenseness and threat of that Weinstein had over people in Hollywood.
5. Avatar: The Way of Water
It feels odd that we had to wait so long for a sequel to the highest grossing film of all time. James Cameron is a man who takes his time and he certainly isn’t going to rush such a high pressured film. Avatar: The Way of Water was always going to make lots of money at the box office, it’s a film that a lot of people love. This sequel shows off the beauty of what this art form can create with stunning CGI. Yes, the story is simple, but it doesn’t need to be the most complicated thing in the world, that wouldn’t get people into cinemas. James Cameron, like someone else further on this list, understands the cinema experience and loves it, and you can tell. At least we only have to wait 2 years until the third instalment.
4. Guillermo del Toro’s Pinocchio
The original Disney Pinocchio is a film that is close to my heart, I don’t know why but it always really hits me. When they released their disappointing live action version on Disney+ it lacked any heart or originality. The same certainly can’t be said for Guillermo del Toro’s version. A beautiful, touching version of the story, that has so much heart and has it in the right place. It’s very dark and not for everyone, but allow yourself to get sucked into this story and this world, you won’t be disappointed with this stunning masterpiece that will be the best version of this story.
3. Everything Everywhere All At Once
I don’t think anyone involved in this film thought it would go onto have such huge success, becoming A24’s highest grossing film, and was Letterboxd’s highest rated film for a time (having now dropped to 13th). A beautiful, heart warming, unique, genius film that reminds you of what to love about the quirky side of cinema, that isn’t just big blockbusters. Fantastic performances from Michelle Yeoh, Ke Huy Quan and Stephanie Hsu, which is likely to see them all pick up nominations for themselves. A perfectly tightly written script from Daniel Scheinert and Daniel Kwan, won’t disappoint with this film that will top many a Top 10 list of 2022 films.
2. Top Gun: Maverick
I remember hearing after early screenings that Top Gun: Maverick was Oscar worthy, it went on to be consistently busy in cinemas grossing over a billion dollars worldwide and picking up steam as we head into award season. Tom Cruise is a cinephile and I think he understands cinema more than most people, he understands what a blockbuster is and what audiences want to see. This sequel many decades on, improves on everything from the first with insane stunts. Strong performances from everyone involved make this the year’s biggest hit.
1. The Batman
It was extremely close between the top 3 but I’m a big comic book fan, I’m a big fan of Matt Reeves and he delivered a superb, unique take on a character we’ve seen countless times on the screen. I’ve never seen a film that has felt more like a graphic novel translated to the big screen, which is what I want for my superhero films. More of a crime, thriller set in the brutal and realistic Gotham city, with fantastic performances across the board and gorgeous cinematography and beautiful score, The Batman delivers in everyway and is exactly what I want in the cinema.
It was a great year for cinema in 2022, lots of huge success for blockbusters and more independant films throughout the year. I easily could’ve changed any of those top 3 and ask me in a couple of days and I might’ve changed my mind.
A big thank you to everyone who read my work over 2022, I always really appreciate the time anyone takes to read my reviews, it means a lot to me. 2023 is shaping up to be another fantastic cinematic year, plenty of reviews and posts on the way so be sure to follow via the buttons below to keep up to date with the latest content and film news.