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In a year of bloated blockbusters, superheroes and sequels, there has been a great decline in smaller budgeted dramas and comedies. Those films ,with a few rare exceptions, seem to have either been at a cinema for a low key week or migrated to Netflix and Amazon. A real shame as cinema shouldn’t all be about spectacle and explosions, however enjoyable they may be.

Anyway, here’s my eclectic top 10 of the year, in no particular order and all very much catered to my taste. Read it and disagree.

GET OUT – a small budgeted horror with a big idea, that manages to satirise, entertain and chill all at the same time.

THE BIG SICK – Funny, heartfelt and a twist on the usual rom-com as one half of the pairing is mostly in a coma throughout…and based on fact.

BLADE RUNNER 2049 – A follow up that just about managed to be reverent to the original whilst offering something new, a few plot holes aside this is leisurely

LADY MACBETH – A grim drama based on a Russian short story about a woman trying to break free of her claustrophobic marriage with tragic results. Florence Pugh is superb in the title role.

DUNKIRK – Christopher Nolan’s war epic played around with fractured timelines but still managed to be tense and authentic.

WAR FOR THE PLANET OF THE APES – The ape trilogy came to an end in an epic Western style, still with plenty to say about humanity and the lack of it.

WONDER WOMAN – The first truly upbeat DC superhero film since Superman with Christopher Reeve, director Patty Jenkins and Gal Gadot provided an earnest but winning take on the Amazonian warrior that led to a wave of global female empowerment.

THOR : RAGNOROKSpiderman: Homecoming and Guardians of the Galaxy 2 were both solidly entertaining but pipping them at the post is the Thunder god’s third outing, given anarchic silly life by director Taika Watiti.

COLOSSAL – Anne Hathaway can control a giant monster on the other side of the world, but has relationship issues to deal with. Offbeat, intelligent and a breath of fresh air.

THE DEATH OF STALIN – Armando Iannucci’s pitch black satire never forgets to be funny alongside it’s chills. The Thick of It in 1953 Russia, and what a cast.

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