With the end of 2018 we’re looking back at some of our favorite things this year. Today we have Alix Teague’s favorites of 2018.
2018 has certainly been an interesting year, particularly for TV and film. To help kick off 2019, here are Alix Teague’s Top 5 shows and films from 2018. (She would have done more, but there was quite a bit of overlap between her list and Lancaster’s.)
- The Haunting of Hill House
The Haunting of Hill House is one of the best shows out there, let alone of 2018. With a spooky, intriguing, slow-burning storyline and some creepy moments and effects, this is definitely worthy of a Top 5 spot. You can check out a more detailed review of Hill House here.
- A Quiet Place
John Krasinski (The Office, Jack Ryan) and Emily Blunt (The Devil Wears Prada, The Return of Mary Poppins) star as Lee and Evelyn Abbott, parents to Regan (Millicent Simmonds: Wonderstruck), who is deaf, and Marcus (Noah Jupe Wonder, The Titan), who is hearing. The family is surviving in a post apocalyptic world ravaged by blind monsters that hunt and kill based on sound.
This 90-minute thriller is a unique cinematic experience. The film is almost entirely without spoken dialogue, with actors communicate using American Sign Language and subtitles featured on the screen. The sound design and original score also contribute to the originality of the film, making this a force to be reckoned with for the year.
Annihilation is a sci-fi horror/suspense film based on the novel by Jeff VanderMeer. It features the talents of Natalie Portman (Star Wars, Black Swan), Jennifer Jason Leigh (Dolores Claiborne, The Hateful Eight), Gina Rodriguez (Jane the Virgin, Deepwater Horizon), Tessa Thompson (Creed, Sorry to Bother You), Tuva Novotny (Eat, Pray, Love), Oscar Isaacs (Ex Machina, Star Wars) Benedict Wong (Prometheus, Doctor Strange), Sonoya Mizuno (Ex Machina, La La Land), and David Gyasi (Cloud Atlas, Interstellar).
Portman stars as Lena, a scientist and former soldier, who team ups with a few others to go into a domed area known as The Shimmer in order to research it and its effects on the surrounding area. They find a variety of mutated plants and creatures within, and things take a turn for the worst.
This was a relatively low-budget film that delivered great performances, great special effects, and a very creepy scene with a mutated bear that still haunts me to this day.
- Bird Box
With stellar performances from Sandra Bullock and supporting cast such as Trevante Rhoades, John Malkovich, Tom Hollander, Danielle Macdonald, and Sarah Paulson, to name a few, Birdbox was one of the biggest Netflix original releases of 2018. All Bullock has to rely on in the post apocalyptic hellscape she’s in are the hearing capabilities of two four-year-olds and a box of birds. You can see a more detailed review of Bird Box here, although we do recommend you remove your blindfolds first.
- Sharp Objects
My number one pick for the year is the HBO miniseries, Sharp Objects, based on the novel by Gillian Flynn. Some of the main cast includes Amy Adams (Arrival, Nocturnal Animals), Patricia Clarkson (House of Cards), Chris (Julie & Julia, The Mindy Project), Eliza Scanlen (Home and Away), Jennifer Aspen (At the Devil’s Door), and Taylor John Smith (You Get Me).
Adams stars as Camille Preaker, a Missourian reporter who, much to her chagrin, must return to her small-town home of Wind Gap to cover the disappearances and murders of some of the local girls. She’s distanced herself from her mother and the town due to trauma she experienced as a kid, but now she must confront said trauma (and her mother) and navigate the waters of small-town politics to get to the bottom of the mystery.
The series is enthralling and mind-blowing. The casting choices are awesome, and the chemistry between the actors is on point, and Adams delivers an award-worthy performance. Sharp Objects is one of the best book-to-screen adaptations I’ve seen, and it’s worthy, in my opinion, of the top spot for 2018.
Written by Alix Teague
(Alix is a fan of memes, puns, and unironically using words like “yeet.” She also has an MA in literature, so she’s clearly putting it to good use. She likes to refer to herself as the Millennial Bard. Follow Alix on anything at @alixplainlater)