An Honest Fangirl's Best of 2019

This has been an interesting year for me. Real Life (mainly grad school) has severely limited my TV/movie viewing time, especially towards the second half of the year. I feel like there's so much that I missed! But these are always really fun to write up, so I couldn't pass on the chance of recapping my favorites from this year.

Best Steven King Adaptation 

So many came out this year! And they were all actually really solid. Is that a first for King adaptations? Of course, some were better than others. Pet Sematary was fun, with a terrific child lead, but ultimately a little boring. It: Chapter Two struggled a bit under the weight of the first movie. And Doctor Sleep... did anyone actually go see that one? (I didn't.)

However, I did see In the Tall Grass on Netflix. It definitely has its faults, especially with regards to pacing, but something about this movie just stuck with me for weeks after I watched it. There is something incredibly primal about the fear of being lost, especially with no real indications of where you came from or where you're going. Plus I tend to get super on edge whenever pregnant women are in obvious danger.

Best Competitive TV Show

I have discovered the world of The Great British Bake-Off and it is a beautiful world indeed. For context: I'm American. All of our cooking shows are incredibly competitive. There's sabotage and smack talk and everyone is Very Professional and Very Serious about their craft. More often than not, they have a massive ego that may or may not be warranted.

Which makes Bake-Off such a breath of fresh air. People are nice to each other. They help each other. They root for each other and celebrate each other's successes. Things are low stress, even if you are mildly concerned about whether or not something will bake properly. It's the perfect show to watch on a bad day, curled up with a blanket and a cup of tea, which is something I desperately needed this year. It just makes me happy.

Best Marvel Movie

This may be a surprising pick, but I have to go with Captain Marvel. I will openly admit that some of it has to do with the fact that it was the MCU's first female-led superhero movie. I distinctly remember being giddy in the theater, thinking "she looks like me!" and feeling my heart soar. That's an emotional experience that is very special to me. 

But I also just genuinely loved the movie. I adored Carol and Nick's dynamic and how it shifted and grew over the course of the movie. I loved Carol and Maria's relationship and friendship. And... it took me a bit but I'm excited about what the movie did with the Skrulls. It was a fun twist and I'm curious to see where it goes in the future. 

Best (New to Me) Foreign Language TV Show

I am a very simple fangirl. Give me a cast of characters, set in an isolated location, hunted by a killer hidden among their numbers, and I will watch (or play) every second of it. That is, essentially, what The Chalet is. The Chalet is a French series that follows the same group of characters over two timelines. In 1997, a family moves to a small, isolated town in the Alps only to later disappear without a trace. Twenty years later, children from the village return in order to celebrate a wedding, only to be cut off from the outside world and die one by one.

I tend to be very good at guessing plot twists. I make it into a game. It's part of the fun of watching TV for me. The Chalet does have some obvious plot twists that I guessed the first episode. It also had plot twists that completely blindsided me. Looking back, they make complete sense. (And take advantage of some truly amazing casting.) The characters are very likable, with a few very purposeful exceptions, and the mystery of what happened in 1997 is unraveled in a very satisfying manner. It's great. Watch it.

Best Horror Movie

I saw more horror movies than I could count this year, but it was one that I caught only a few weeks ago that wins this top spot. Haunt follows a group of friends as they visit an "extreme haunted house attraction." You know, the kind where you have to sign a ton of waivers and the scare actors can push you around and throw stuff on you. Of course, this being a slasher horror movie, the scares end up being a bit more real than the group originally anticipated. 

Haunt only got a very limited release, which is honestly a huge shame. It's a tight, little horror movie, lasting just over 90 minutes. Each of those minutes is filled with creative situations, tense sequences, and very gory practical kills. I appreciate a very solid practical kill, and Haunt ramps it up each time. It can be admittedly a little hard to find this movie, but if you can it's well worth the watch. 

Best Cameo 

Lucifer finally made it into the Arrowverse and interacted with John Constantine. That is all I have wanted for years now. It was beautiful and wonderful and I need more. 


An Honest Fangirl spends far too much time watching really bad horror movies and playing video games. Occasionally, she writes things! 

4 comments:

Billie Doux said...

Happy holidays, Fangirl, and what an interesting list. I don't watch horror movies because I'm such a wuss, but I'll admit your choices sound intriguing. :)

Billie Doux said...

Oh, and I'm with you as far as best cameo is concerned. Loved it.

Patrick said...

Any "Best Of" list regarding 2019 television for me has to include The Dark Crystal: Age Of Resistance. It was the show I was most anticipating, and the show I was most dreading. The original movie was such a huge part of my childhood, and remains one of my all-time favorites(only behind Casablanca). When I heard they were developing the prequel series I felt like that one character in the trailer for the Mr. Rogers movie, "Please don't ruin my childhood". But Age Of Resistance was everything I could have hoped for and more. The story was great, the characters were great, and the technical aspects of the show were beyond belief. I was especially pleased to see their restraint when it came to CGI. It was used to enhance things, but not overwhelm them. I truly believe that if Jim Henson were alive and making the original movie today, it would look a lot like Age Of Resistance. And you don't even really need to have seen the original movie to enjoy it, though it does help.

Patrick said...

Also, I'm with you on The Great British Bake-Off. My mom & sister got me into the show, and it's delightful. I haven't watched the older seasons, mostly because I enjoy Noel & Sandy so much :)