My Year in Movies - 2023

Dan O'Neill 2023-12-20 2 min read

I watched 68(!) movies this year - which seems like a lot but at the start of the year our youngest was going through a sleep regression which meant pretty early mornings. So, needing some easy watching I actually started the year by watching the Marvel movies in chronological order. There were some pretty great movies in that endgame arc, so this was pretty enjoyable run of movies.

The Batman was one that I had held out on watching but it was surprisingly good when I actually got around to it - A different direction but solid. Pretty enjoyable.

The Creator A scene still from THE BATMAN. TM & © 2023 Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc. All rights reserved.

On the bad side: I watched the 1960’s Spartacus - awful. Needed about one hour cut from it. Adam Driver’s 65 - terrible. Just terrible. Hell on the Border - Once I saw a crew member holding the horse in the mud in the first five minutes, I should have turned this off. The Card Counter - just not for me.

But easily the biggest let down of the year was Napoleon, Ridley Scott’s epic biopic starring Joaquin Phoenix. Most of the battle scenes, and a number of other good sequences saved it from being truly terrible, but some tonally weird moments and gratuitous gore really outweighed the good. I hear there’s a 5 hour edit coming but I’m not sure I actually want more of this movie.

Along with the aforementioned Spartacus, I took a look at another movie from that time period, it was released in 1957 - 12 Angry Men, and wow, that one holds up. I did not expect it to, but it really held my attention the whole way through.

So, I think I’m out on my own on this one, but my standout movie of the year was The Creator. I loved everything about this one from Gareth Edwards. The visuals, the music, and the story, everything. I was really able to buy into the whole thing. Loved seeing Allison Janney in this but John David Washington was just amazing.

The Creator A scene still from 20th Century Studios’ THE CREATOR. Photo courtesy of 20th Century Studios. © 2023 20th Century Studios. All Rights Reserved.

No doubt I’ll add a few Christmas movies over the next few days - The Night Before is always watched around now - I don’t think anything is going to be really added this list that isn’t a rewatch.