The Top 10 Best Films of 2015, from two viewpoints

Photos+from+Flickr

Photos from Flickr

Photos from Flickr
Photos from Flickr

Culture Editor Jason Wiese and reporter Devin King each compiled their own personalized lists ranking the best that cinema had to offer in 2015. See how these critics’ opinions match up.

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Jason Wiese | Culture Editor
Monday, Jan. 4; 2:15 p.m.

10. Star Wars: The Force Awakens – J.J. Abrams brought balance to the most powerful franchise in the galaxy with this exciting and heartfelt adventure.

9. Me and Earl and the Dying Girl – Emotionally gripping. Aesthetically pleasing. Absolutely hilarious. The 21st century’s answer to John Hughes.

8. It Follows – A horror film by writer-director David Robert Mitchell and starring Maika Monroe, that is as visually stunning as it is hauntingly suspenseful. FINALLY!

7. Carol – Cate Blanchett and Rooney Mara star as opposite ends of a forbidden romance in the 1950s in this gorgeous and wonderfully told adaptation of “The Price of Salt” directed by Todd Haynes.

6. The Hateful Eight – Writer-director Quentin Tarantino reinvented the term “suspension of disbelief” with his signature brand of the action thriller. However, his latest, a relentlessly grim ensemble piece, is his most authentic and plausible film yet and may be the most clever western ever made.

5. Ex Machina – Remember Chappie? This brilliant and terrifying cautionary tale of technological advancement gone too far from writer-director Alex Garland is what that movie failed to be.

4. Mad Max: Fury Road – Tom Hardy may have top billing, but Charlize Theron owns George Miller’s latest foray into the post-apocalypse which may be the most gorgeously shot and throughly intense action film I have ever seen.

3. The End of the Tour – Based on a real conversation between Rolling Stone reporter David Lipsky and acclaimed late author David Foster Wallace, Jason Segel and Jesse Eisenberg turn what is essentially a two-hour conversation into an intense and thoroughly engrossing experience.

2. Spotlight – I was personally inspired to be a better journalist after seeing this captivating drama based on the Boston Globe’s 2001 investigation into the Catholic Church’s cover-up of a history of priests committing pedophilia.

  1. Steve Jobs – Whether you are speaking of the real-life late founder of Apple or of writer Aaron Sorkin and director Danny Boyle’s thrilling, unique reimagining of the innovator’s life starring Michael Fassbender, either way, you are speaking of something profound.

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Devin King | News Editor
Monday, Jan. 4; 2:15 p.m.

10. Ex Machina – A compelling mystery that is just as much fun to watch unravel as it is to see its complex characters interact.

9. Brooklyn – While very simple and reminiscent of classic films, “Brooklyn’s” loveable characters and excellent dialogue may literally charm your socks off.

8. Steve Jobs – The film maybe over the top with its dialogue and character interactions, but the narrative is so clever and the performances are some of this year’s best.

7. Sicario – Hands down the best mystery of the year that ends up asking very big moral questions.

6. Carol – Its cast has the best chemistry of 2015 and its alluring nature makes “Carol” very impactful.

5. Mad Max: Fury Road – Many people will say that “Fury Road” is just an action movie, but they could not be more wrong. While there are excellent action pieces, this film tells a story of people trying to survive in a world thrown into chaos.

4. Macbeth – An excellent retelling of the Shakespeare’s classic that puts the viewer in the middle of medieval Scotland. More than likely the best looking film of the year as well.

3. Spotlight – The powerful retelling of the Catholic sex abuse scandals of 2002. Hits all the right notes in terms of acting, story and pacing.

2. Inside Out – There is a great story that is told, but Pixar went above and beyond in the ambitious “Inside Out.” Using laughs and heartaches, the bigger story is about how humans think and feel.

1. Room – Arguably the best film since 2007’s “No Country for Old Men.” Few films are able to create a grand world. This film creates two.