(This article is part of our Best of 2022 series.)
As with every year, I had made a goal to watch as many movies as I could in 2022… more than just horror and rom-coms. Alas, just as with every year, I failed. But I do have a handful that I enjoyed quite a bit and only one is a romantic comedy! So be proud and read on.
Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery
Knives Out was one of my favorite movies of 2019 so I was thrilled when the sequel, Glass Onion, was announced. I was also a little apprehensive. Would Rian Johnson be able to replicate the humor and twisty turns of Knives Out? Would Benoit Blanc become a caricature of himself? Thankfully Johnson did not disappoint me. I had just as much fun with Glass Onion as I did with Knives Out and Benoit Blanc has quickly become one of my favorite cinematic characters. However, as much as I adore Daniel Craig in these films, it was Janelle Monáe who stole the show and I can’t wait to see her in more. I’m already looking forward to a third mystery from Johnson… all I ask is that whatever it’s called is followed by A Benoit Blanc Mystery and none of this Knives Out Mystery nonsense.
The Black Phone
I adore author Joe Hill, so yes, I was really excited to see how they adapted his novella, The Black Phone, to the big screen. I was also very nervous because Hollywood does not have a very good track record of adapting his father’s work (Stephen King) and maybe I was expecting to be disappointed. But Scott Derrickson did a fantastic job directing this dark story, anchored by strong performances by Ethan Hawke, Mason Thames and Madeleine McGraw. Hawke is chilling as the Grabber and watching the ending unfold is both wholly satisfying and incredibly tense.
I did not want to see this movie when it was being marketed. Based on the trailer, I was afraid it would just be another gory horror film where unlikable characters were slaughtered in inventive and ridiculous ways. Thankfully I was talked into going to see it anyway and I’m so glad I did. Barbarian was nothing that I expected. Just when you think you know what’s happening… nope, you have no idea. Plenty of scares and WTFness, and I think it’s way past time that Justin Long gets an honorary Scream Queen title because he was so
horrible good in this.
Plenty has been said about Nope’s commentary on Hollywood and society in general, so I’m not going to dive into that. Instead, I’m just going to say that Nope was some of the most fun I’ve had in a theater in 2022. Keke Palmer and Daniel Kaluuya are incredible as siblings Emerald and OJ, but the real star here is Jean Jacket. The cinematography and visuals are absolutely stunning and I cannot get the image of the blood raining down on the Haywood house out of my head. Nope is quite a ride… albeit a disturbing one at times, but definitely a movie that’s going to stick with me for a good long while.
The Lost City
Proving that big-budget rom-coms are not dead, The Lost City brought Sandra Bullock back to the genre with a bang. Action-packed, romantic, and fun as hell, The Lost City is the only movie I saw in the theater twice in 2022. I love Sandy B in just about everything, but adding Brad Pitt, Daniel Radcliffe and Da’Vine Joy Randolph in supporting performances was just an added bonus. Yes, fine, Channing Tatum was good too. The Lost City gave me hope that we’ll continue to get big time movie stars back in the rom-com genre and I hope they’re as fun as this one was.
Those are my five favorite films of 2022. What are your personal thoughts on my favorite films from the past year? Share them with me down in the comments!