Whittling down to 10 top movies of the year was hard, but my #1 never changed. These might not be the "Best" movies of the year, but they are most certainly my favorite.
10 Morris From America: A romantic coming-of-age drama about a 13-year old American boy falling in love for the first time while living with his dad in Germany. This movie lives and breathes hip hop in a way that almost all pop culture fails to do.
9 Nocturnal Animals: Jake Gyllenhall, Amy Adams and Michael Shannon own every frame of this meta-fictional shocker. It's lurid, brutal and deeply unsettling to watch and I'm not sure I even liked the movie, but not a second of it has left me.
8 Arrival: Another excellent turn by Amy Adams in a science fiction sleeper about the importance of communication in an age where we constantly shout over one another. Anyone expecting something like "Independence Day" will be disappointed, but those who get excited by ideas will rejoice.
7 Swiss Army Man: Described as the "Farting corpse movie starring Harry Potter," it was booed out of Sundance, and yet made its way straight into my heart.
6 The Witch: When I initially reviewed this movie, I complained that the hype for "The Witch" sold it as a horror masterpiece when it really wasn't that scary. I was wrong. On second viewing, this movie got deep into my psyche and gave me some very weird dreams.
5 The Lobster: On the surface this film is about crippling loneliness and despair, but each viewing unlocks a thread about the lengths we actually go to in order to connect. Colin Farrell gives the performance of his career.
4 The Little Prince: As wonderful as "Zootopia" and "Moana" were this year, "The Little Prince" is this year's animated masterpiece. Bouncing between stop motion and computer animation with ease, this Netflix release had me alternating between weeping and laughing for a childhood I could almost imagine having.
3 Hell or High Water: A Texas Ranger hunts desperate bank robbers trying to save their family farm. This is country-fied noir in the sunshine, where you can empathetically feel the bugs and sweat pouring down your face. A captivating, slow burn thriller that takes the time to craft compelling characters.
2 Moonlight: There are scenes of such uncommon power throughout "Moonlight" that the movie feels like something made by a master filmmaker in the waning years of his career. Janelle Monae, Mahershala Ali and Naomie Harris will be showered in awards come February.
1 Green Room: A punk rock band has to fight for their lives against a group of neo-Nazis who have them trapped in a club's green room. This film is messy, brutal, ugly and hard to watch, but had me pinned to my seat for the entire running time. We miss you Anton Yelchin.