TOP 50 of 2018 (#50 – #26): KEVIN RAKESTRAW

Before I dive into my yearly list of the top 50 films that I recommend I would like to list some of the films that I was unable to watch, for one reason or another. Either they never came my way or I was just unable to fit them in before I locked in my list. Those films are: Minding the Gap (Bing Liu), A Bread Factory (Patrick Wang), Shakedown (Leilah Weinraub), Hale County This Morning, This Evening (RaMell Ross), The Favourite (Yorgos Lanthimos), Jinn (Nijla Mumin), Zama (Lucrecia Martel), and much more I’m sure.

But, these are the ones I did see. And, I recommend them all. All were available in some form or another, either by streaming (usually Kinet.Media, NoBudge, Vimeo, Festival Scope, Mubi) or in theaters. I have provided links were applicable.


#50 – HOW TO LIVE WITH REGRET directed by John Wilson

Anytime Wilson makes an addition to his ‘How to’ series be assured it’ll end up on my year-end list.

Available on

#49 – I’M NOT HER(E): iMnOTHERe directed by Carmen Spoto

Kinet’s Program 09 was all-around great. Looking forward to more of Spoto’s I’m Not Her(e) series.

Available on Kinet.Media

#48 – THEMATRIX061702_ROUGHV.5.WMV directed by Tynan DeLong

A group of friends tries to remake The Matrix while excluding one of their roommates.

Available on

#47 – EINST directed by Jessica Johnson

Johnson + landscapes = serenity.

Available on Kinet.Media

#46 – RUPTURE directed by Yassmina Karajah

Four Arab teens search for a public pool in their new city.

#45 – AGUA VIVA directed by Alexa Lim Haas

A vibrant animated short stained melancholic.

Available on

#44 – CASA DE MI MADRE directed by Frank Mosley

A concentrated camera centered on a woman’s farewell speech to her stand-in son.

Available on Hammer to Nail

#43 – A QUIET PLACE directed by John Krasinski

#42 – IT’S HIM directed by Sophy Romvari

Romvari is once again able to do so much with so little.

Available on Vimeo

#41 – BLACKKKLANSMAN directed by Spike Lee

#40 – INNARDS directed by Tyler Rubenfeld

A former child actor reaches out to his twin brother about their role in a straight-to-video cannibal horror.

#39 – PLUS ULTRA directed by Helena Girón & Samuel M. Delgado

An experimental short shot on the Canary Islands about the arrival of Spanish explorers.

#38 – UPGRADE directed by Leigh Whannell

A good bit of sci-fi action fun; refreshingly ridiculous in places.

#37 – UNSANE directed by Steven Soderbergh

#36 – TUX AND FANNY directed by Albert Birney

A delightful series of one-minute animations that are bizarre and sincere.

Available on YouTube, Instagram, Twitter

#35 – WHERE IS KYRA? directed by Andrew Donsunmu

A great performance from Pfeiffer from a screenplay by Darci Picoult and cinematography from Bradford Young.

#34 – WEREWOLF directed by Ashley McKenzie

A small-scale drama about a methadone-using couple that sticks with you.

#33 – PRIVATE LIFE directed by Tamara Jenkins

#32 – SHIRKERS directed by Sandi Tan

#31 – OPTIMISM directed by Deborah Stratman

A portrait of Dawson City, Yukon Territory.

#30 – WIDOWS directed by Steve McQueen

#29 – MADMANWEDDING_REMIX 2018 directed by Miguel Mantecon

Available on Kinet.Media

#28 – SOME OF MY BEST FRIENDS ARE GHOSTS directed by Andrew Infante

An overabundance of autumnal tenderness.

Available on Kinet.Media

#27 – FIRST REFORMED directed by Paul Schrader

#26 – BABY BROTHER directed by Kamau Bilal

A portrait of a younger brother failing to catch breaks but surrounded by love.

Available on Vimeo

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