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The Best Films of 2016


October was by far my favorite month as it was Beyond Fest (see reviews) and Halloween all in one month so you know it was absolutely bonkers! Beyond Fest is LA's biggest and baddest genre film festival in LA and even though it's my 4th year attending the festival, as always it reigned chaos! In addition to watching as many horror films as my brain can handle (ie: 10 Horror Masterpieces), I saw breathtaking and humanistic films like Denis Villeneuve's Arrival, The Eagle Huntress, Moonlight, and We Are X! Many of these films possessed a universal message about the inspiring power of the human spirit and a powerful look at just what it means to be human. As you can see, October did not disappoint! 



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Year: 2016
Directorna Lily Amirpour
Writerna Lily Amirpour
Cinematography: Lyle Vincent
Cast: Suki Waterhouse, Jason Momoa, Keanu Reeves, Jim Carrey, Diego Luna
Country of Origin: USA
Rating: R
Time: 118 mins.



Sal from Crome Yellow and I had the privilege of attending Beyond Fest--LA's best and baddest genre film festival--where we got to watch the another cannibalism film, this time directed by Ana Lily Amirpour called The Bad Batch! Arlen (Waterhouse) is thrown into a fenced-off desert wasteland past the Texas border where all the "bad batch" of society now live. After getting her leg and arm chopped off by local cannibals, she ends up finding hope and love. Trust me when I say, you have never seen a film like this. Like Amirpour's previous hit film, A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night, I enjoy and appreciate her work immensely as an experience rather just a film. With it's incredible cast of new and old school actors and a banging soundtrack, psychedelic vibe, The Bad Batch surely is not to be missed!



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Year: 2016
Director: David Yates
WriterJ.K. Rowling
Cinematography: Philippe Rousselot
Cast: Eddie Redmayne, Katherine Waterston, Dan Fogler, Ezra Miller, Colin Farrell
Country of Origin: UK | US
Rating: PG-13
Time: 133 Min. 


I wouldn't say that I'm a Potterhead but I can say with full confidence that as an avid fan of the potterverse, Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them did not do justice to the beloved series. This film is J.K. Rowling's screenwriting debut which is inspired by the book of the same name. Back in 2001, Rowling came out with the textbook under the pen name of Newt Scamander where it chronicles the magical creatures in the Harry Potter universe. We get a dose of breathtaking mystical creatures as well as a deep look into the magical world in the U.S.



As much as J.K. Rowling is an phenomenal novelist, when it comes to screenplays, the cohesive story structure is simply not there. I'm hoping for the next films that she will co-write with someone else. David Yates returns yet again as the director and he provides enough laughs and thrills for us fans who have been so famished for more stories of the wizarding world! There will be 4 more films in the Fantastic Beasts series where it will lead up to the much anticipated and epic battle between Dumbledore and Grindelwald. If only, Johnny Depp wasn't in it. 

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Year: 2016
Director: Julia Ducournau
WriterJulia Ducournau
Cinematography: Ruben Impens
Cast: Garance Marillier, Ella Rumpf, Rabah Nait Oufella
Country of Origin: France | Belgium
Rating: R
Time: 99 Min.



Sal from Crome Yellow and I had the privilege of attending Beyond Fest--LA's best and baddest genre film festival--where we got to watch the best cannibalism movie of this year, Julie Ducournau's Raw. Following a veterinary college initiation ritual where she has to eat a rabbit kidney, vegetarian Justine becomes consumed with cannibalism tendencies. This film has everything I love: sisterly love, exploration of female sexuality, and a refreshing spin on the cannibalism genre! This is Ducournau's directorial debut feature and it's an absolute stunner that is crafted with confidence and innovativeness.



Raw took the FIPRESCI prize at Cannes Film Festival and even made grown men faint when they saw it at Toronto International Film Festival! Sal and I are not sure EXACTLY which scene they fainted because there isn't anything outrightly grotesque that warrants a fainting spell so for those with weak stomachs, this film is A-OK! It's all around intensely engrossing film with a brutal coming-of-age story that will give you sweat-inducing flashbacks of your college years and an in-depth look at a girl's transition to womanhood, blood and all. 


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