The year that was 2023 has been a wild ride as it relates to film. We’ve seen massive highs, some desperate lows and an awful lot of strikes. Despite all this, though, it’s been quite a fun year for movies. Fans of all kinds had a lot to enjoy. Well, we here at GGA had our favorites. In fact, we had far more than we could name. What are our Top 10, you ask? Here’s to all our trips to the movie theater this year.  

John Wick: Chapter 4

Keanu Reeves walks through a park in John Wick: Chapter 4

Keanu Reeves as John Wick in John Wick 4. Photo Credit: Murray Close

Franchise releases are notoriously challenging. In an industry thriving on developing pre-existing intellectual property, we’ve come to expect a certain amount of drag the longer a series extends. John Wick, however, seems to be breaking the mold. Each time out, it gets better and better. 

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This fourth installment shows the series (as well as its almost 60-year-old star) functioning at peak delightfulness. Keanu Reeves kills it (pun intended!) once again. There’s whip-smart humor, adventurous direction and fun action sequences, making for a pitch-perfect big-screen experience. 

John Wick: Chapter 4 is available on DVD and VOD. 

Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse

Miles Morales and Gwen Stacy hang upside down while looking at the NYC skyline in Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse.

Columbia Pictures and Sony Pictures Animation’s SPIDER-MAN: ACROSS THE SPIDER-VERSE.

2023 was not a memorable superhero year. Sadly, it was far from it. Imagine our surprise when the year’s most delightful memory didn’t come out of Marvel or DC.

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Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse stepped away from the usual format to remind us just how good superhero films and animated movies can be. It’s been a rare experience when I could step back, look at an animated film and think of it as “art.” This is what Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse is. It’s a big, beautiful, heartwarming work of art. 

Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse is now available on DVD. 

STILL: A Michael J. Fox Movie

Michael J. Fox sits in his home with his hand on his face while looking lost in thought in Still: A Michael J. Fox Movie.

Michael J. Fox in “STILL: A Michael J. Fox Movie,” now streaming on Apple TV+.

When I think of my own nostalgia, Michael J. Fox is a huge part of it. As a child of the early 1990s, Back to the Future was one of my favorite movies growing up. At the same time, Family Ties was peak “stay home sick from school” viewing. He’s one actor who has always been in my life. 

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As such, I was scared to tackle Still: A Michael J. Fox Movie. I had so, so many feelings. Admittedly, diving in rocked my little world. At the same time, though, it presents a beautifully clear-eyed telling of Fox’s story. His personality is vibrantly present, and while there wasn’t a dry eye in the theater, I was truly glad to watch this documentary. 

STILL: A Michael J. Fox Movie is now streaming on Apple TV+. 

Killers of the Flower Moon

Lily Gladstone as Mollie Burkhart and Leonardo DiCaprio as Ernest Burkhart in Killers of the Flower Moon.

Martin Scorsese. Enough said. Few filmmakers can consistently come onto the scene year after year, and without fail, wow me. Knowing that, I was most certainly excited to check out Killers of the Flower Moon this fall. Mr. Scorsese delightfully continued his streak. He did not disappoint.

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Killers of the Flower Moon brings a masterful examination of a string of murders happening around the Osage tribe in Oklahoma. This is (admittedly) a challenging subject matter. Scorsese meets it head-on with a well-crafted, beautifully acted picture. Look for many of these names to be mentioned come Awards Season, most notably Robert DeNiro and Lily Gladstone

Killers of the Flower Moon is now available on digital VOD. 

Asteroid City

In a split screen shot Jason Schwartzman and Tom Hanks talk to each other on the telephone.

Wes Anderson’s ASTEROID CITY, a Focus Features release. Credit: Courtesy of Pop. 87 Productions/Focus Features

I must admit … I have never been a Wes Anderson aficionado. Though, that might have changed with Asteroid City. I knew little about this film when I ventured to theaters to check it out this spring. However, I did know one thing. This movie is definitely my vibe. Just look at the candy-colored goodness of this space-age aesthetic. 

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Asteroid City is a weird, wacky and crazily high-concept period comedy coming from the typically wacky filmmaker. It’s a stylized genre picture brought to the screen by a cast committed to Anderson’s vision. It gave me such joy. Check it out if you haven’t.

Asteroid City is now available on DVD and VOD. 

Barbie

Margot Robbie claps her hands as she winks at the camera during a dance number in Barbie.

I was skeptical walking into Barbie. Very skeptical. This summer, everywhere one turned on social media, people debated the merits of “Barbenheimer.” Where did you stand? Kids, I was “Team Oppenheimer.” So, I needed this movie to wow me. 

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Well, Barbie was able to do just that. This lovable comedy made my Grinchy heart grow. There may or may not have been crying in the theater. Who am I kidding? I was ugly crying. Barbie may look like a shameless IP cash-grab, but the summertime hype was so incredibly justified. It’s a beautiful film with a good heart, and it deserves its spot among the best of the year. 

Barbie is now streaming on Max.  

Maestro

Bradley Cooper leans heavily on his hand as he wraps his arm around Carey Mulligan in the movie Maestro.

Maestro. Cr. Jason McDonald/Netflix © 2023.

Maestro is a film that I was (embarrassingly) ready not to like. Did Bradley Cooper give me pause? Perhaps. Was I prepared for yet another slightly shallow mid-century biopic to miss the mark? Yes, everyone. I was. 

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So, you could have knocked me over with the proverbial feather when this film pulled me in kicking and screaming. This drama charting Leonard Bernstein and Felicia Montelegre’s (Carey Mulligan) relationship is beautifully human. Cooper is, of course, off-the-charts in the lead role. However, Mulligan meets him head-on in this quiet but exquisite character drama. Look for both performers to show up come Oscar time. 

Maestro is now streaming on Netflix. 

Oppenheimer

Cillian Murphy smokes a pipe as he stands in front of telephone poles cutting through a desolate desert environment in Oppenheimer.

Cillian Murphy is J. Robert Oppenheimer in OPPENHEIMER, written, produced, and directed by Christopher Nolan.

“Oppy,” as I affectionately call it, was (believe it or not) my number-one film of 2023 right up until Thanksgiving. This film was one of my most anticipated releases coming into the year, and the Christopher Nolan drama did not disappoint. While I loved Barbie, in the “Barbenheimer” battles, I was fully and completely “Team Oppenheimer.” 

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Oppenheimer is led by Cillian Murphy in one of my top performances of 2023. The actor tackles playing the noted scientist with stamina and physicality. This results in a portrayal that is almost painfully transformative. While the movie brings the usual boisterous Christopher Nolan panache, Murphy brings a frail, human and wonderfully layered portrayal. This movie wouldn’t work without this performance, and we all should bow to Cillian Murphy. 

Oppenheimer is now available on DVD and VOD. 

Saltburn

Barry Keoghan sits at a fancy dinner table as his reflection looks back at him.

Speaking of dynamic bits of wonderfulness, Saltburn brings all the weird and fascinating goodies. Director Emerald Fennell stepped behind the camera once again and delivered one of the most enjoyable theatrical experiences I had in 2023. 

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This is primarily thanks to Barry Keoghan‘s fearless performance as Oliver Quick. In this darkest of dark comedies, the young actor finds a portrayal that is unlike anything I’ve ever really seen. He commits fully and fearlessly to Fennell’s vision for this movie. I mentioned it in my review, and the fact remains true: I want to see behind-the-scenes footage from this shoot because I want to know how Fennell directed Keoghan to that performance. It’s that incredible.

Saltburn is now streaming on Prime Video. 

All of Us Strangers

Paul Mescal leans heavily on Andrew Scott as they are bathed in purple light.

Andrew Scott and Paul Mescal in ALL OF US STRANGERS. Photo by Parisa Taghizadeh, Courtesy of Searchlight Pictures. © 2023 Searchlight Pictures All Rights Reserved.

All of Us Strangers is a picture I somehow missed until the trailer was released. I’m still not sure how the heck that happened, considering a cast that is “very me.” If you were reading Geek Girl Authority last year, Paul Mescal (and Aftersun) was my darling of 2022. It seems he is my Awards Season “King.” He turns me into a sobbing, weepy mess every holiday season, and I am so here for it. 

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This doesn’t even include the rest of this brilliant, beautiful cast. Andrew Scott brings a performance that (I’m calling it now) will be a snub if he isn’t nominated for an Oscar. Claire Foy and Jamie Bell will always bring a smile to my face. All of Us Strangers is a beautifully emotional experience, and it is my “Must-See” of this holiday season.

All of Us Strangers is now in theaters as a limited release. It will debut nationwide on January 26, 2024. 

It’s been a busy, busy year of films. There’s been a lot of great stuff, and many weren’t afraid to take mighty swings. What were your favorites? Let us know! 

Check out our other movie reviews here

Movie Review: ALL OF US STRANGERS

Kimberly Pierce
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