Paul Gilbert’s Top 10 Movies of 2015
- Duke of Burgundy
Peter Strickland’s follow up to Berberian Sound Studio (2012). Strickland draws us into a dream state following a lesbian S&M relationship. It’s beautiful, sexy and surprisingly funny. It’s about trying to please your partner and conform to their expectations. The lucid plot allows for a poetic and emotional film.
- Ex Machina
A cerebral science-fiction film that is more Star Trek than Star Wars. A programmer is invited to take part in a Turing Test for a new form of AI created by an eccentric genius. The entire film is a chess game of who’s playing who. The film stands out as a smart and suspenseful film that will be remembered for a long time.
- Inside Out
A wonderfully imaginative film. Pixar’s best movie to date. If you haven’t seen it yet, what the hell are you waiting for?
- Shaun The Sheep
A slapstick animation film from the creators of Wallace and Gromit. It’s impossible not to like this film. A modern day silent film that has the most laughs in any film of 2015.
- Bone Tomahawk
One of two westerns on my list. A posse led by Kurt Russell sets out to rescue to members of their community that have been captured by a cannibal Indian tribe. The stand out performance comes from Richard Jenkins as a Walter Brennon like character. A mashup of western and horror boasts of one of the most visceral disemboweling in a movie.
- Slow West
A fairytale set in the American West, a search for a lost love brings a naïve young kid and hardened gunslinger together. The most beautiful western you have seen in a long time, with great performances by Michael Fassbender and Kodi Smit-McPhee. The final shootout is both funny and tragic.
A transcendent film about forbidden love. Once again, Todd Haynes channels Douglas Sirk. The film beautifully photographed by Edward Lachman. Not as good or subversive as Far from Heaven, but standout performances by Cate Blanchett and Rooney Mara make the visit to the cinema worthwhile.
- 8. Mad Max: Fury Road
This movie is nuts. Practical effects perfectly blended with CGI make the most exciting action-movie in a long while. The film boasts a strong female protagonist portrayed by Charlize Theron. Oh what a lovely day!
- Bridge of Spies
A spy thriller is a mix between John Le Carre and Frank Capra. Spielberg’s uses his mastery of the form to create an emotional and tense spy thriller.
- Listen to Me Marlon
Using previously unreleased audio tapes of Marlon Brando going over his career and life, it’s a melancholy look at the great actor’s life through his own words. A tragic confessional look at one of the enigmatic actors of the 20th century.
Honorable Mentions: Mississippi Grind, The Big Short