Posted December 31, 2017 by Yuri Mangahas in Movies/TV

The Best of 2017 in Movies, Animation & TV!

Mico Orda (Writer, Movies, TV and Animation)

Best Film: Mudbound
Mudbound’s social commentary on racism provides an honest, harshest realities in a respectful manner, director Dee Rees further projects the subject matter visually in a dirty, muddy harsh environments of the Deep South spanning from 1940s to 1950s along with Tamar-Kali’s score that echoes that unspoken struggle in rural America. Famed singer Mary J. Blige brings an outstanding performance as Florence Jackson is the main highlight, she was unrecognizable without any makeup and a chameleon both physically and mentally: there’s a nuanced warmth and tormented soul that she projects with or without any dialogue. What makes the film’s take on racism work is that it doesn’t pertain to a specific era but it’s a topic presented in a timeliness manner that encourages dialogue.

Best TV Show: Fargo Season 3
Season 3 breaks away from the storytelling formula, it’s as unique and fresh as the first two seasons and keeps the essence of what Fargo is: dark humor, quirky characters and Midwestern sensibilities. The theme’s connection goes in all forms, takes the story and characters, and alike are interwoven like a domino effect, in a slow burning pace and doesn’t shy away with its shared awkwardness, the random moments and absurdity which plays in an unpredictable manner that made me eagerly wait from episode to the next.

Best Local Film: Birdshot
A coming of age, police procedural with some supernatural imagery, Birdshot follows the story of a 14-year old girl named Maya entangled in an investigation after killing an endangered Philippine eagle.

Mikhail Red’s film hits every single mark, a game changer in Filipino filmmaking scene, it doesn’t rely on shaky, artsy indie shooting style combined with muddled, mumble jumble and pretentious lines for the sake of making it look smart. Every shot managed to capture the luscious mountainous landscapes of the Philippine countryside.

It feels grown up, it’s cinematic, set pieces and notably the costume design fleshes out the character’s presence from Maya’s costume to Domingo and Mendoza’s police uniforms. The writing offers a brisk, blunt dialogue, storytelling where these characters are directed into backdrop of social issues such as police brutality and bringing the dialogue on endangered species, its awareness and this is what defines the scope and its depth that you can create bigger stories where you can have the characters, subtexts and themes laid out in an elaborate way.

Best Animated Project: Star Wars Rebels Season 4
Every episode is an emotional, powerful eventful character study, the writers focuses on their journey not wholly on the story that allows the Ezra, Kanan, Hera, Zeb and Chopper shine and thrives in their heroic moments and that’s what makes season 4 compelling, its ensemble approach reminiscing the Clone Wars shows Dave Filoni’s masterful storytelling work.

Season 4’s nods and callbacks from previous Star Wars installments doesn’t feel forced but rather emphasizes on the scale and without spoiling, case in point Mon Mothma and Saw Gerrera’s tensions from Rogue One is were explored in a few episodes and including these story elements adds more emphasis on the drama and lays the original trilogy’s political backdrop and at the same time wrapping up the prequels without these two trilogies overshadowing the leads. The only downside now is we’ll have to wait for the final seven episodes next year.

Yuri Mangahas

Yuri is magnanimously juggling between two managerial jobs: A technical manager position for an advertising/copy-writing company, and an associate editorial position for a fashion and lifestyle magazine. Nevertheless, he still finds time taking photos and seeking for geek nirvana.