Steve Davis’ Top 10 Films of 2023


1) Oppenheimer A big, bold, and beautiful film about the atom bomb. Christopher Nolan is the man.

2) The Holdovers Alexander Payne revives the Seventies' humanist vibe in this waggish film about three lonely souls.

3) Past Lives Destiny brings two Korean childhood friends together again in this affecting debut by Celine Song.

4) May December A sly take on a tabloid story about forbidden love turned inside out years later.

The Boy and the Heron

5) The Boy and the Heron Is this exquisite piece of cinema really anime maestro Hayao Miyazaki's last film? Let's hope not.

6) Godland 19th-century Iceland is an unforgiving landscape in this chilly tale of clashing cultures.

7) Sharper A stylish neo-noir about grifters conning Manhattan's elite that's always one step ahead.

8) Killers of the Flower Moon A solid adaptation of a shocking nonfiction bestseller about the Osage murders in 1920s Oklahoma.

9) Plane A credible middle-aged hero rocks in this surprisingly aloft thriller that exceeds low expectations.

10) M3GAN A gender-flipped version of Chucky terrorizes in this campy AI cautionary tale.

Near Misses: Anatomy of a Fall, Priscilla, Return to Seoul

Most Overrated: Asteroid City, Cocaine Bear, Joy Ride

Most Underrated: A Haunting in Venice, Knock at the Cabin, Plane

Wild Card: Revenge of the Nerds: Andrew Barth Feldman (No Hard Feelings), Barry Keoghan (Saltburn), and Dominic Sessa (The Holdovers)

Acting Kudos (Male): Charles Melton (May December), Franz Rogowski (Passages), Ryan Gosling (Barbie)

Acting Kudos (Female): Da'Vine Randolph (The Holdovers), Jodie Foster (Nyad), Michelle Williams (Showing Up)

Best Director: Christopher Nolan (Oppenheimer), Hayao Miyazaki (The Boy and the Heron), Todd Haynes (May December)

Best Original Screenplay: David Hemingson (The Holdovers); Nicole Holofcener (You Hurt My Feelings); Samy Burch (May December)

Best Adapted Screenplay: Andrew Kevin Walker (The Killer); Greta Gerwig, Noah Baumbach (Barbie); Eric Roth, Martin Scorsese (Killers of the Flower Moon)

TV Series/Event: The family dysfunction in the flashback Christmas episode "Fishes" in The Bear explained just about everything.

Worst Film: A double dose of dreck starring Joaquin Phoenix: Beau Is Afraid and Napoleon

The Little Film That Could: Showing Up: Kelly Reichardt and Michelle Williams redux in a melancholic dramedy about the struggling artist's life.

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