A Look Back at the Marvels of 2018: The Cinematic Peaks
What if I told you that five years ago, the world of cinema was painted with splotches of explosions, tear-invoking dramas, and belly-aching comedies? Yes, this is Darius bringing you back to 2018, a vintage year in terms of celluloid magic. So, buckle up, my cinematic time travelers, as we journey back to yesteryears, when we all were a bit younger, and the movie world was a little more magical. Let's take a hefty flashback to revisit the year that gave us a Mother of Dragons, a fish-man romance and a high-stakes intergalactic conflict.
The Oscar-Winning Marvel – 'The Shape of Water'
How can we begin this celluloid saga without acknowledging Guillermo Del Toro's stunning masterpiece? 'The Shape of Water' is not just a film, it’s a visual poem that embraces the beauty of 'difference'. The ephemeral nuances present in each scene, from the flooded bathroom dream sequence to the ethereal love story between a mute woman and an aquatic humanoid, the entire ambiance had an out-of-the-world flavor. I remember being completely lost in its surreal beauty, emerging only when the end credits started rolling, consciousness drenched in ripples of Del Toro's magical realism. Not only did it win the hearts of audiences worldwide, 'The Shape of Water' won a staggering four Academy Awards, including 'Best Picture' and 'Best Director' for Guillermo Del Toro. Talk about leaving a splash!
An All-Black Ensemble Triumph – 'Black Panther'
Now shifting gears, let’s dive into the realm of superhero flicks. 'Black Panther' wasn't just another addition to the Marvel Cinematic Universe; it was a cultural phenomenon that showcased the power of an all-black cast as never before. Set in the utopian African country of Wakanda, the film followed the journey of T’Challa or Black Panther, from being a young prince to an inspiring king. The visuals were breathtaking, the action sequences jaw-dropping, and the cultural representation so powerful that it still resonates deeply. Even now, the phrase "Wakanda Forever!" fills me with a sense of elation. Remember when Chadwick Boseman appeared on the screen for the first time in his Black Panther costume? I bet you were as awestruck as I was.
A Horror Thriller with a Silent Punch - 'A Quiet Place'
Moving on from the superhero genre, 2018 also gave us something chilling to the bone - 'A Quiet Place'. If you haven't seen it, let me warn you – this is not one of those sloppily done, cheap-jump-scare horror movies. It is a masterfully crafted heart-stopper that innovates with its use of silence. Yes, the leads in the movie, John Krasinski and Emily Blunt plays a couple who survive an apocalyptic world by avoiding any form of sound. Watching the film was such an experience, the popcorn munching in the theater turned into silent panic eatings. But hey, it was worthwhile!
An Emotional Rollercoaster - 'Avengers: Infinity War'
The Marvel Cinematic Universe served a two-course meal in 2018. After 'Black Panther', it was time for 'Avengers: Infinity War'. And what a rollercoaster it was! An elaborately orchestrated symphony of superheroes battling against the mighty Thanos who wanted to wipe out half the universe with a snap of his fingers. The highlight for me was the unpredictable ending. Did anyone see that coming? After the movie, I walked around in a daze, shocked at my favourite characters fading into dust. I remember my heartbeat rhythm coinciding with the end credits tune. Truly a marvel!
A Star-Born Musical - 'A Star Is Born'
For the musically inclined folks, 2018 also gifted us 'A Star Is Born'. Bradley Cooper's directorial debut, it was a magical ball of bliss that drove me into the depth of dreams while keeping me grounded with its raw emotional appeal. The on-screen chemistry between Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper was visceral, and the lyrics of the songs, especially 'Shallow', hit right at the heartstrings. Each performance felt like a canvas, delicately painted with authentic emotions. It's a must-watch for anyone who appreciates great music and cinematography combined with a genuine love story.
A Monumental Display of Animation - 'Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse'
A mention of best movies of 2018 is incomplete without acknowledging the animated phenomenon – 'Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse'. Here is an animated film that hit all the right buttons; spectacular animation, top-notch storytelling, beautiful soundtracks, and fun, relatable characters. The story of young Miles Morales becoming Spider-Man and meeting other spider-people from alternate dimensions had me gripped from start to finish. This comic book brought to life proved that animation could very well contend with live-action in terms of depth and substance.
There you have it – a wholesome flashback to 2018, a cinematic buffet that ranged from the strange love of a woman for an aquatic creature to a world where silence meant survival. From waves of superheroes (and a super-villain) enchanting us with their epic battles to a musical journey of self-discovery – we had it all. They say making movies is like painting; you can show your perspective to the world with colours and shapes. In this sense, 2018 offered one of the most diverse palettes I have yet to see.