SPECIAL: The Best Movies of 2015

Photo: Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures

Photo: Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures

Chris Luckett

Last year, in my Best Movies of 2014 article, I commented on how weak a year we’d had. If only I’d known what 2015 would be like!

For the first time since I launched The Apple Box in 2011, I don’t have 25 movies to strongly recommend. I’ve always said the only movies that deserve to be on a “Best of the Year” list are 4½- and 5-star films, and standing by that, that leaves me with 17. Just 17 movies last year, out of the nearly 150 that I saw, were good enough to write home about.

There were far more average or mediocre movies compared to great ones last year, but that doesn’t mean 2015 was a wash, by any means. These 17 movies, in fact, feel all the more special by being surrounded by weaker fare than usual. These films reminded us all that no matter how bad a year’s cinematic crop, there will always be brilliant movies. Continue reading

REVIEW: Mission: Impossible — Rogue Nation

Photo: Paramount Pictures

Photo: Paramount Pictures

Chris Luckett

In an alternate universe somewhere, Bond movies are still fun.

Don’t get me wrong; Daniel Craig’s adventures in the tux have been (mostly) great, and Skyfall ranks as one of the absolutely best 007 films, but the series lost something when it consciously forsook its trademark over-the-top spectacle and winks to the audience in favour of basically becoming a British Bourne.

Thankfully, the Mission: Impossible series, struggling after a confusing first entry and a downright awful second one, picked up Bond’s dropped baton and has run with gusto. Mission: Impossible — Rogue Nation continues the streak of top-of-the-line action, unflappable charm, and insane adrenaline that its two most recent predecessors tackled with aplomb, firmly solidifying the Mission: Impossible series’ reputation as one of the most impressive action series in cinema. Continue reading