Welcome one and all to Flixist’s new end of the year awards program, the Golden Cages! With Hollywood becoming increasingly out of touch with what the people like, we at Flixist have taken it upon ourselves to deliver the fair, balanced, dignity-filled awards you deserve. Why are we delivering our 2018 awards so late in the year? Because the Oscars do it and we’re better than them. The winners of the Golden Cages will be spread out over the next two weeks, right before the hostless Academy Awards.
Movies to me are all about expectations. Before any buzz, reviews, or massive outcry, one can easily set their mind on if a movie should be good or bad. If it stars Daniel Day Lewis or is directed by Alfonso Cuaron, I am going to expect one of the best movies of the year. If it stars John Travolta or has anything to do with Bryan Singer, I am probably not going to want anything to do with it.
So usually a movie can be boosted or a victim to its own expectations. No movie catapulted over this bar more than Spider-Man: Into the Spiderverse which is hands down the best animated movie of the past year, or maybe even this decade.
Spider-Man: Into the Spiderverse wasn’t even on my radar. I usually dismiss animated versions of comic book movies automatically. But something about this drew me in. Perhaps it was the inclusion of Miles Morales, a very non-traditional protagonist for a comic book movie, and by that I mean, not white. I caught a glimpse of the voice cast and I was immediately interested and the early reviews were very, very positive so I decided to give it a shot.
Then this scene happened:
This scene still gives me chills and this is probably the 15th time I have watched it. In the theaters my eyes welled up with tears. It’s probably my favorite scene in any film this year. The use of music, the visuals, the build up; It’s nearly perfect. Much like this entire film.
I will fully admit the story line of Spider-Man is over saturated. There have been too many movies and redos and start ups and changes in direction. I had Spider-Man fatigue and this movie fully acknowledges and plays into that. It takes everything you know about Spider-Man and flips it upside down, much like the opening of the scene above. This film is inspiring, moving and so much damn fun. The soundtrack is the best of the year right next to Black Panther’s, the score by Daniel Pemberton is revolutionary and incredible and the look, feel and sound of every scene is pure gold.
I could write for hours on the brilliance of Miles’ relationship with his father and uncle. Or the amazing actors who worked on this film ranging from Mahershala Ali, Brian Tyree Henry and Shameik Moore. Or I could just write about John Mulaney and how amazing a Spider-Ham movie would be. But instead I will just say how grateful I was for this film exceeding my expectations. I firmly believe this movie could not have been any better. If this movie doesn’t win an Oscar, I am going to riot, but at least got a Golden Cage