It’s time again for my annual awards. Eligible films are those that were released in the United Kingdom for the first time in 2018. I have 108 eligible movies. That’s fewer than previous years, because of work commitments with notable omissions of Custody, Sorry to Bother You, The Wife, and First Man.


Every year, there are a few films that are both unseen by audiences and overlooked by critics. With the advent of more and more films getting released on streaming services first, it seems to be getting harder for some of them to be noticed. The winner falls into that category.

Runner Up: Mark Felt: The Man Who Brought Down the White House

Winner: Last Flag Flying


The winner was Oscar nominated as Best Picture so may seem like an odd choice, but I do think it was widely thought of as workmanlike and safe, but I believe it to be much better than that.

Runner Up: Ocean’s 8

Winner: The Post


Probably the easiest winner to pick, a movie that was universally lauded and took squillions at the box office but I found it a borefest.

Runner Up: Widows

Winner: Black Panther


Strangely, of the films I saw, the good examples outweighed the bad ones this year….

Runners Up: Overboard, Halloween & Ocean’s 8

Winner: Mission Impossible: Fallout


For most of the year, I didn’t think I would have this category as the worst I could come up was Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom, but in December, that changed…

Loser:  Widows


This is a category that I often do not bother with. However, this year saw the decline in gross out comedies and a resurgence in character led, witty, or harmless/silly ones. In fact, the winner could lay claim to being the funniest film this decade:

Runners Up: Tag, Overboard, The Spy Who Dumped Me

Winner: Game Night

BEST POPCORN MOVIE (excludes comedies)

Another strong year in this category. I have cheated a bit to allow a really fun effort that came close in other categories to take the prize

Runners Up: The Commuter, Skyscraper, Halloween, Mission Impossible: Fallout

Winner:  Ocean’s 8


Not so many scores really made an impression in 2018, but there were some notable exceptions from Johnny Greenwood (Phantom Thread), Carter Burwell (Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri), Alexandre Desplat (The Shape of Water) and Daniel Hart (The Old Man and the Gun).

Runner Up: Cody Carpenter, John Carpenter & Daniel A Davies (Halloween)

Winner: Johnny Greenwood (You Were Never Really Here)


A year for solid rather than spectacular documentaries, such as Bobby Robson: More than a Manager, My Generation and Bombshell: The Hedy Lamaar Story. But the winner was both very moving and a great technical achievement

Runner Up: Final Year

Winner: They Shall Not Grow Old


A new, probable one off category for a movie that I enjoyed immensely but still puzzles me as to what genre it should fall into…comedy, murder mystery, twisted drama, thriller…?

Winner: A Simple Favour


Although, my list seemed shorter than previous years, it was almost impossible to separate the top 5

Runners Up:

Matty reunites with his trainer (Journeyman)

The troops attack the protestors (Peterloo)

The final scene – a cop discovering the Watergate break in (The Post)

The bullet extraction (Game Night)

Molly meets her Dad at the ice rink (Molly’s Game)

5: The first performance of Shallows (A Star is Born)

4: Chief Willoughby talks to Mildred Hayes after she is arrested (Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri)

3: Crib shopping (Roma)

2: Ron has his photo taken with David Duke (BlacKkKlannsman)

Winner: Jackson tells Bobby he idolised him (A Star is Born)


It’s often tempting to hand this award to someone who has shot breathtaking landscapes, but this year, it goes to the crisp, beautiful black and white portrayal of Mexico City in the early 1970s.

Runners Up: Dan Lustsen (The Shape of Water), Vittorio Storaro (Wonder Wheel), Matthew Libatique (A Star is Born), Michael McDonough (Leave No Trace)

Winner: Alfonso Cuarón (Roma)


Plenty of competition for this one, with the winner being a film that the screenplay was the best part of it:

Runners Up: Liz Hannah & Josh Singer (The Post), Peter Landesman (Mark Felt: The Man Who Brought Down the White House), Paddy Considine (Journeyman), Greta Gerwig (Lady Bird), Ian McEwan (On Chesil Beach), Taylor Sheridan (Sicario 2: Soldado), Daniel Kokotajilo (Apostasy), Mike White (Brad’s Status), Richard Linklater & Darryl Ponicsan (Last Flag Flying), Mark Perez (Game Night), Tony Gilroy (The Negotiator)

5: Nicole Holofcener (The Land of Steady Habits)

4: Martin McDonagh (Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri)

3:  Bradley Cooper, Eric Roth and Will Fetters (A Star is Born)

2: Charlie Wachtel, David Rabinowitz, Kevin Willmott & Spike Lee (BlacKkKlannsman)

 Winner: Aaron Sorkin (Molly’s Game)


Honourable mention has to be given to 2 people who have been fine in other films but were really bad this year: Justin Timberlake (Wonder Wheel) and Steve Furst (Walk Like a Panther). But the ‘winners’, though brave men, are terrible actors:

Losers:  Alek Skarlatos, Anthony Sadler & Spencer Stone (The 15:17 to Paris)


Not such a bumper year for female supporting roles as in recent times, but there are some notable ones outside of my top 6: Hong Chao (Downsizing), Octavia Spencer (The Shape of Water), Julianne Nicholson (I, Tonya), Bojana Novakovic (I, Tonya), JunoTemple (Wonder Wheel & Unsane), Ekaterina Samsonov (You Were Never Really Here), Aloïse Sauvage   (120 BPM), Odeya Rush         (The Bachelors), Ajiona Alexus (Breaking In), Ashlie Atkinson (BlacKkKlansman), Charlize Theron (Tully)

Joint 5: Molly Wright (Apostasy) & Isla Fisher (Tag)

4: Allison Janney (I, Tonya)

3:  Laurie Metcalf (Lady Bird)

2: Chloe Sevigny (Lean on Pete) 

Winner: Lesley Manville (Phantom Thread)


Either of the top 2 performances would have won in most other years. Honourable mentions go to:

Kevin Costner (Molly’s Game), Sam Rockwell & John Hawkes (Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri), Bardley Whitford (The Post), Bruce Greenwood (The Post &  Mark Felt: The Man Who Brought Down the White House), Steve Buscemi (Lean on Pete), Michael Buscemi (BlacKkKlansman), Dean Norris (The Negotiator), Ulrich Tukur (In the Fade), Tom Waits (The Ballad of Buster Scruggs & The Old Man and the Gun), Richard Jenkins (The Shape of Water) and Tracy Letts (Lady Bird)

5: Adrian Scarborough (On Chesil Beach)

4: Woody Harrelson (Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri)

3  Alan Armstrong (Funny Cow)

2:Adam Driver(BlacKkKlannsman)

Winner: Sam Elliott (A Star is Born)


Once again, a hard one to whittle down but one actress dominated. Honourable mentions:

Daniela Vega (A Fantastic Woman), Juliette Binoche (Let the Sunshine In), Charlize Theron (Tully), Isabela Moner (Sicario 2: Soldado), Diane Kruger (In the Fade), Emma Thompson (The Children Act), Lauren Cohan (Mile 22), Siobhan Finneran (Apostasy), Blake Lively (A Simple Favour), Maxine Peake (Funny Cow & Peterloo), Sandra Bullock (Ocean’s 8 & Bird Box)

Sally Hawkins (The Shape of Water) & Taraji P. Henson (Proud Mary)

10: Anna Kendrick (A Simple Favour)

9: Frances McDormand (Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri)

8: Jessie Buckley (Beast)

7: Jessica Chastain (Molly’s Game)

6: Jodie Whittaker (Journeyman)

5: Lady Gaga (A Star is Born)

4: Saoirse Ronan (On Chesil Beach)

3:  Yalitza Aparicio (Roma)

2: Thomasin McKenzie (Leave No Trace)

Winner: Saoirse Ronan (Lady Bird)


Not so much depth in this category but I found it hard to order a fantastic top 6.

Honourable mentions to: Gary Oldman (The Darkest Hour), Tom Hanks (The Post), Timothy Spall (Finding Your Feet), John David Washington (BlacKkKlansman),), Michael Caine (King of Thieves), JK Simmons (The Bachelors), Donald Sutherland (The Leisure Seeker), Ethan Hawke (Juliet, Naked), Robert Redford (The Old Man and the Gun)

10: Casey Affleck (The Old Man and the Gun)

9: Stanley Tucci (The Children Act)

8: Joaquin Phoenix (You Were Never Really Here)

7: Ethan Hawke (First Reformed)

6: Ben Stiller (Brad’s Status)

5: Ben Mendelsohn (The Land of Steady Habits

4: Daniel Day Lewis (The Phantom Thread)

3: Bradley Cooper (A Star is Born)

2: Paddy Considine (Journeyman)

Winner: Steve Carrell (Last Flag Flying)


Steven Spielberg (The Post), Paul Thomas Anderson (The   Phantom Thread), Greta Gerwig (Lady Bird), Richard Linklater (Last Flag Flying), Lynne Ramsay (You Were Never Really Here), Steven Sodebergh (Unsane), Paddy Considine (Journeyman), Paul Feig (A Simple Favour), Mike Leigh (Peterloo), Debra Granik (Leave No Trace)

5: Alfonso Cuarón (Roma)

4: Paul Greengrass (22-Jul)

3: Stefano Sollima  (Sicario 2: Soldado)

2: Spike Lee (BlacKkKlansman)

Winner: Bradley Cooper (A Star is Born)


The worst film of the year was one I expected to be a fun little movie but turned out to be abominably bad.

Also on the naughty step: Blockers, Father Figures, Irreplaceable You, The Open House, The 15:17 to Paris,

When We First Met, Renegades and Mary Magdelene

Loser: Walk Like a Panther


I have 15 outstanding films of 2018, but some others went close:

Ocean’s 8, You Were Never Really Here, 22 July, A Simple Favour, The Land of Steady Habits, Leave No Trace, Halloween and  Mark Felt: The Man Who Brought Down the White House

15: On Chesil Beach

14: Peterloo

13: Mission Impossible: Fallout

12: Brad’s Status

11: Game Night

10: Lady Bird

9: Molly’s Game

8: Journeyman

7: Roma

6: Last Flag Flying

5: The Post

4: Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri

3: Sicario 2: Soldado

Runner Up: A Star is Born

Winner: BlacKkKlamsman