The 6th Annual K&M Random Movie Awards

RANDOM AWARDS

Today marks the sixth (you heard me right – sixth) year that I have put together this highly esteemed and hardly anticipated final look back at the previous year in movies. I simply call these the K&M Random Movie Awards. Even the name drips with prestige and significance. These aren’t your run-of-the-mill awards drivel. Oh no, these are completely random categories yanked out of the air and presented to you. Now, without further delay, the red carpet ceremony is over and the nominees are in their seats. Lets get to this year’s ‘winners’…

Best Directorial Debut – Kogonada (“Columbus”)

In a year rich with fine directorial debuts none grabbed me quite like Kogonada. Sadly seen by too few, “Columbus” was a superb start to a promising feature filmmaking career.

Best Child Performance – Millicent Simmonds (“Wonderstruck”)

Another category full of potential winners, but for me it’s Millicent Simmonds. Hands down one of the most gentle, lovely and expressive child performances I’ve seen.

wonderstruck

Worst Movie of the Year – “Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets”

Sure, there is a lot of dreck I have happily avoided, but “Valerian” was by far the most boring and laborious movie I sat through last year. At least some of the images were pretty.

Best Superhero Movie – “Wonder Woman”

Calling it ‘Best Superhero Movie’ is almost a disservice. I think it’s one of the best films from 2017 of any genre. Patty Jenkins and Gal Gadot struck pure gold.

Worst Use of a Great Cast – “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri”

Just looking at this cast is impressive – McDormand, Rockwell, Harrelson, Hawkes, Hedges just for starters. Unfortunately Martin McDonagh’s mess of a movie wastes it all.

Best Surprise Ending – “Split”

I won’t spoil a thing, but who on planet earth saw that coming? I’m talking about the end of M. Night Shyamalan’s “Split”. The VERY end. You who have seen it know what I mean!

Most Nefarious Food Item – Mushrooms

What the heck was up with mushrooms in 2017. I won’t even mention the movies where mushrooms play a key role in fear of spoiling things but good grief.

silence

Best Movie Released in 2017 but Called a 2016 Movie Due To Dopey Release Schedules – “Silence”

Oh how I dislike release schedules. Every year a movie that would have made my Top 10 doesn’t open for most of us until the next year. Scorsese’s brilliant “Silence” was that film in 2017.

Best Screenplay – “Molly’s Game”

Aaron Sorkin can write dialogue. No one can question that. But if you do “Molly’s Game” is more proof of the man’s immense talent with words.

Most Overly Praised Movie – “Get Out”

Yes, I know it’s a beloved movie heralded as greatness. Quite honestly it blows my mind. It has some big ideas but even more gaping holes in logic and execution. I just can’t get aboard the hype train.

Most Unfairly Maligned Movie – “Justice League”

“Justice League” definitely has flaws but critics came out guns blazing picking it apart for the smallest things (unlike the aforementioned film). Again, it has issues but the stoning it took was undeserved.

Best Car Chase – “John Wick: Chapter 2”

John Wick has good taste in cars. His quest to rescue his gorgeous black 1969 Ford Mustang in JW2’s opening sequence is met with some pretty heated resistance. It also results in one killer car chase.

WICK

Best Fight Scene – Kylo and Rey vs. Snoke’s Guards

So many scenes could win this but nothing excited me more than seeing Kylo and Rey back-to-back with Snoke’s guards surrounding them. Their brief but incredibly cool team-up had our theater roaring.

Worst Movie Title – “Happy Death Day”

Let me start off by saying “Happy Death Day” is an unexpectedly fun and entertaining little horror-thriller. But let’s be honest….that title….

Best Comedy – “Logan Lucky”

I may be wrong but I seems that Steven Soderbergh’s “Logan Lucky” came and went with little attention. I found this deep-south riff on the Ocean’s movies to be a hilarious romp.

Most Overlooked Performance – Rob Morgan (“Mudbound”)

There was some great supporting work in 2017 but the most criminally overlooked has to be Rob Morgan. He’s an anchor of “Mudbound” yet practically no one is talking about him. That’s a shame.

Best Documentary – “Finding Oscar”

I’ll admit I didn’t see as many documentaries as I hoped to, but “Finding Oscar” has left its mark on me. Informative, important, shocking and heartbreaking. It’s a film that needs to be seen.

PLUMMER

Best Villain – J. Paul Getty (“All the Money in the World”)

The story behind Christopher Plummer replacing Kevin Spacey is enough to make this character legendary. Turns out no crutch is needed. Plummer’s J. Paul Getty is just that vile and the movie is better for it.

Most Eye-Opening Performance – Haley Lu Richardson (“Columbus”)

There were a lot of eye-opening performances in 2017, but none grabbed me quite like Haley Lu Richardson in “Columbus”. It’s an expressive soulful performance full of heart and longing.

Biggest Letdown – “Thor: Ragnarok”

First off this is far from a bad movie. But as someone who is a fan of both Thor and director Taika Waititi I wanted more. Waititi’s portrayals feel way out of sync with the greater MCU and the absurdity eventually grew old for me.

Best Keanu Reeves Impersonation in a Movie – Dane DeHaan (“Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets”)

I still haven’t figured out what Dane DeHaan was going for in “Valerian”. His voice had me thinking Keanu Reeves from “Point Break”. I kept wanting him to yell “Bodie, I’m an F..B..I agent!”

Coolest Action Sequence – Kong vs. Helicopters (“Kong: Skull Island”)

Keep in mind this isn’t the “Best” action sequence but the “Coolest”. Kong introducing himself to a group of trespassing military helicopters certainly qualifies. What a way the start their Skull Island adventure!

Best Football Scene – “The Disaster Artist”

You truly have to see it to believe it. James Franco in full Tommy Wiseau character tossing a football in an almost inhuman fashion. It’s both bazaar and laugh-out-loud funny.

The Most Exciting Theater Experience – “Dunkirk”

No other 2017 theater experience came close to matching what Christopher Nolan offered with “Dunkirk”. An exhilarating rush of visuals and sound presented on the big screen as only Nolan can.

BEGUILED

Best Dinner Table Scene – “The Beguiled”

This category almost went to “Phantom Thread” but ultimately Sofia Coppola’s “The Beguiled” won out. I won’t dare spoil it, but suffice it to say it’s a scene that has remained stuck in my head. I love it.

Best Original Score – “Phantom Thread” (Jonny Greenwood)

Speaking of “Phantom Thread”, in a strong year for memorable music nothing could quite beat Jonny Greenwood’s exquisite classical score. It is both elegant and haunting. More importantly it fits perfectly in ever scene it touches.

Most Annoying Best Friend – Rod (“Get Out”)

Most people I’ve talked to seemed to really like Chris’ TSA buddy Rod in “Get Out”. Aside from the fact that his very existance opens up some of film’s biggest plot holes, he’s also extremely annoying. He’s almost always in stand-up comic relief mode and the TSA gag was funny the first couple of times. After that…nope.

Best Daddy/Daughter Moment – “Logan”

Several 2017 movies had these moments that got to me – “Molly’s Game”, “Lady Bird”, even “Logan Lucky”. But the moment that wins comes from “Logan”. No spoilers, but if you’ve seen it you know it. Now enough talk. I’m getting misty thinking about it.

Best Special Effects – “Blade Runner 2049”

Denis Villeneuve made a critical decision when making his “Blade Runner” sequel – maintain the look and tone of the original. Oh, and bringing along Roger Deakins is never a bad idea. The results are absolutely wonderful. Scene after scene features some amazing effect which fuel this dark dystopia that feels right at home with its predecessor.

And that wraps up 2017. On to 2018…

18 thoughts on “The 6th Annual K&M Random Movie Awards

  1. 1) I didn’t like VALERIAN, but I found it passable.
    2) Were animated spoofs eligible for Best Superhero Movie? If not, then I agree with WONDER WOMAN.
    3) I disagree with Worst Use of a Great Cast.
    4) I agree with Best Surprise Ending.
    5) I liked SILENCE, but I didn’t love it.
    6) I liked GET OUT, but I didn’t love it. That being said, I would award Most Overly Praised Movie to BEAUTY AND THE BEAST or CARS 3. Maybe even THE BOSS BABY (mixed reviews, but an Oscar nomination).
    7) I liked JUSTICE LEAGUE, but I can’t really argue with a lot of the criticism.
    8) I liked that scene, but I would award Best Car Chase to BABY DRIVER (the beginning) instead.
    9) I liked that scene, but I would award Best Fight Scene to ATOMIC BLONDE (the stairwell) instead.
    10) I liked Rob Morgan’s performance, but I didn’t love it. I would award Most Overlooked Performance to Andy Serkis instead (WAR FOR THE PLANET OF THE APES).
    11) I liked THOR 3 a lot. I would award Biggest Letdown to THE CIRCLE, THE DARK TOWER, THE LEGO NINJAGO MOVIE, THE SNOWMAN or SUBURBICON. I didn’t think they were the worst (a couple of them I wouldn’t even call bad), but they all seemed to be very good.
    12) I agree with Best Keanu Reeves Impersonation in a Movie.
    13) I liked that scene, but I would award Coolest Action Sequence to BABY DRIVER (escape through the mall) or SPIDERMAN HOMECOMING (Washington Monument).
    14) I agree with The Most Exciting Theater Experience. A friend told me and 2 other friends that he saw it and didn’t like it, and we inmediately asked him if he saw it in the cinema or his computer. He said his computer and we said “Of course.”
    15) I agree with Best Dinner Table Scene.
    16) I’m also among those who laughed with ROD. I would award Most Annoying Best Friend to VICTOR (LEAP/BALLERINA).
    17) I agree with Best Daddy/Daughter Moment.

    • Great comments! Here are a few responses:

      6. I never saw “Cars 3” but I thought it was considered fairly forgettable? Same with “Boss Baby” (with the exception of the Academy).
      7. I think JL has some reasons to be criticized. But critics seemed ready to pounce on it from the start.
      10. Love the mention of Serkis. The Awards circuits do overlook him. But I have heard many people rightly praising his work. No one even mentions Morgan.
      11. Completely fair. I guess those you mentioned wouldn’t work for me simply because my expectations for them all were pretty tempered.
      14. Wow. I can’t imagine a computer viewing matching a theater experience. I can see why it may not have wow’d them.
      16. Haven’t seen Victor.
      17. That was a tough category. I went back and forth so many times.

  2. I agree about COLUMBUS. I thought it was a brilliant debut and was proud to show it at Cinema Detroit (although not a lot of people turned up to see it). Looking forward to Kogonada’s next work.

    • That’s great to hear! So glad you gave it an audience. I’m a bit stunned by how few people are talking about it. In fact I don’t think there is even a DVD release date yet.

  3. I support you in you in your decision not to jump on the hype train re Get Out. For me, it was a particularly flawed film. I also agree with your other entries, especially with Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets being the worst of the year.

    • THANK YOU! It feels pretty lonely approaching Get Out from my perspective. I just have a hard time seeing it as the great awards-worthy film the vast majority do. Valerian though…ugh!!!

  4. Your award titles are the best! I agree on Wonder Woman and Justice League. And what WAS Dane DeHaan doing in Valerian?

    I still haven’t seen Get Out – usually when a film is that hyped up it stands no chance when you finally sit down and see it.

    However, Thor Ragnarok is pretty close to my second favorite film this year.

    • This goofy ‘awards’ thing has always been fun to do. “Get Out” is pretty much adored by everyone but me. But I honestly don’t get the hype. There is a lot you have to overlook in order to consider it great. And I completely get how “Thor: Ragnarok” could be a favorite. I did like it myself (especially Jeff Goldblum). It just wasn’t what I had hoped for.

  5. Love the oddball categories you went with (reminds me of myself, lol). I’ll just comment on the awards for the movies here that I’ve seen:

    Worst Movie – Valerian/Best Keanu Impression – DeHaan: I don’t have it as my worst, but completely understand the sentiment. It was most certainly a chore to get through. As for Dane DeHaan, I felt it was more a bad impersonation of Harrison Ford’s Han Solo infused with an equally poor impersonation of William Shatner’s Cpt. Kirk.

    Best Superhero Movie – Wonder Woman: I really like this movie. In fact, it causes me a bit of a dilemma for this award. I personally think Logan is the far better film. That’s no knock on WW, I just think Logan is on the very short list of the very best the genre has to offer. However, I think WW is the more important film for what it, and the character, represents. In other words, I won’t really argue with you on this one despite how much I love Logan.

    Best Surprise Ending – Split: Yes, yes, and more yes. My jaw absolutely dropped a that moment and then I got visibly excited. That made things a bit odd in my house since I was watching it with the fam and none of them have seen Unbreakable.

    Most Overly Praised/Most Annoying Best Friend – Get Out: We’ve had this conversation before, so I’ll just remind you I disagree. Strongly, lol. Okay, I’ll give the latter award. I didn’t hate the best friend, but I see how he could rub you the wrong way.

    Most Unfairly Maligned – Justice League: I’ll buy that. It’s not a great movie, but I did enjoy it about a thousand times better than Batman vs. Superman.

    Best Car Chase – John Wick 2: Yup. But the opening of Baby Driver comes close.

    Best Fight Scene – Kylo/Rey vs. Guards: I liked it. Very good moment. However, the climactic one-take stairwell/apartment battle in Atomic Blonde takes the cake for me.

    Worst Movie Title – Happy Death Day: Yeah, that’s awkward. I have some other contenders, though. my daughter had me watch a Netflix movie called #RealityHigh. Yes, the hashtag is actually part of the title. Before it even started I wanted to stomp out a millennial. She also had me watch the vaguely, generically, and repetitively titled Everything, Everything. We must truly be all out of ideas. Might be worth noting that both movies sucked.

    Most Overlooked – Rob Morgan: Yup.

    Biggest Letdown – Thor: Ragnarok: No. I realize Thor isn’t generally portrayed as the goofy oaf the MCU has steadily morphed him into, and the Hulk suddenly being where we was skips years of comic book history, but I had a great time. One of the best comedies I saw all year.

    Coolest Action Sequence – Kong: Yup.

    Most Exciting Theater Experience – Dunkirk: Yup.

    Best Daddy/Daughter – Logan: Double-yup.

    • Great comments! I like Logan quite a bit. In fact I’ve had a review written for weeks. I need to get it posted. For me WW felt fresh and new. Like something neither Marvel or DC had captured before. And as much as I liked Logan it did have a couple of issues that held it back just a tad.

      About Split, I remember that final scene landing and my jaw freaking dropped. The lights came up and it was as if I was the only one who knew what that scene meant. In fact, walking out a man said to a woman “So I guess Bruce Willis is going to be in “Split 2?” I wanted to scream “Don’t you get what just happened?!?!?”

      #RealityHigh? That’s pretty bad!

      For me the Thor/Hulk antics wore thin after a while. And I really didn’t mind Hulk being where he was. It was neat and loosely resembled the Planet Hulk storyline. And I don’t really mind the MCU portraying Thor as a bit of an airhead. But I felt Waititi went overboard with it. His Thor was far more of a dimwitted doofus than any of the other MCU movies. And suddenly Banner is walking around fully Hulked out and casually chatting it up. That’s such a dramatic change for two characters part of a bigger continuity. I did love Goldblum though!

  6. I’m smiling in good spirits but part of your post stung me a bit. Your worst film of the year is my favorite of the year. I thought Valerian was very good but not perfect. It has a rare imagination which is a big draw for me. And for a change, it isn’t too serious (or gloomy) about the lead characters. Apart from that, i enjoyed the rest of the post.

    • That’s what makes movies so great. They can impact different people is different ways. I remember a few years ago I loved The Monuments Men but it was panned by most people. It actually made my Top 10 that year.

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