When we're not busy covering all things tech, Gadgets 360 staff members love to unwind by watching movies. Our staff members' taste is quite varied as you would expect, so we decided to ask everyone in the team to pick their favourite film from 2018. We didn't set any restrictions in terms of genres or languages, and we got everything from underrated regional films to global blockbusters.
Here are our favourite movies of 2018.
Abhinav Lal: Annihilation
I'm a science fiction buff. That being said, I am usually disappointed with the technobabble spewed in most movies in this genre, or their dumbed-down plots and super-cliche dialogue. There are a few exceptions that stand out from this excess of pulp, and they don't necessarily need to be hard science fiction where every bit is spelled out, or be something extremely complex that requires multiple viewings to piece together.
Instead, they could follow a formula that Alex Garland's Annihilation used — a story that leaves you wondering just what happened at the end, with multiple possibilities that each have a good chance of being correct.
I haven't read Jeff VanderMeer's Southern Reach Trilogy, the first book of which the movie is based on, but I'm now excited to do so, thanks to the movie — not something very common with movie adaptations of books for me. The fact that it also features some refined acting, evocative dialogue, great direction, and mind-blowing visuals, all helped make it the best movie of 2018 for me.
Watch Annihilation on Netflix
Aditya Shenoy: Raazi
I don't watch a lot of movies but one movie I was dragged into the theater to watch was Raazi. This is a Hindi spy thriller and has a very good story line. Alia Bhatt and Vicky Kaushal played their roles very well.
The movie is based on a novel Calling Sehmat which is based on real events that occurred during the Bangladesh liberation war between India and Pakistan.
Watch Raazi on Amazon Prime Video
Akhil Arora: Roma and The Heiresses
There's never going to be a year I'll have one single favourite, so the best I can do — while gritting my teeth — is two. The first is Roma, one you've likely heard a lot about in the past few months if you follow even one film site. In the hands of a lesser director, Roma might have been a story about the filmmaker's own upbringing during the changing social and political landscape of Mexico in the 1970s. But this affecting, black-and-white semi-autobiographical tale from Alfonso Cuarón rises above that with its perspective shift, conveying the story from the point-of-view of a family's live-in housekeeper, and her life in and outside of the household.
Watch Roma on Netflix, from December 14
My second pick is called The Heiresses, which marks a feature-length debut for its Paraguayan writer-director Marcelo Martinessi. It's a success story on several levels: it's an excellent and poignant relationship drama about two formerly-wealthy lesbian sexagenarians, which is still rare in today's supposedly progressive industry; it surprisingly marks a terrific screen debut for two stage veterans in Ana Brun and Margarita Irun; and it comes out of a country that has virtually no film industry to speak of, which is why it took dozens of indie producers worldwide for it to be made.
Check out The Heiresses on IMDb
Akshay Jadhav: A Quiet Place
My favorite movie this year has been A Quiet Place. It was an outstanding thriller with a simple premise of a family trying to survive silently in a post-apocalyptic world, which made this movie really suspenseful and terrifying to watch.
Thoroughly enjoyed it from the beginning to the end. And speaking of Avengers, I just can't wait for the next instalment that's about to come next year. Hyped!
Check out Avengers: Infinity War on IMDb
Gagan Gupta: Deadpool 2
I haven't had the chance to catch many movies this year such as Mission: Impossible Fallout (Review), A Star is Born, Bohemian Rhapsody, Solo... well, the list goes on. Marvel was quite disappointing this year in my opinion, save for Black Panther, which was somewhat enjoyable. But if I had to pick one movie that I watched and thoroughly enjoyed, it has got to be Deadpool 2 (Review).
The first Deadpool film seemed like it was trying too hard, and the jokes seemed overdone in the second half, but in the sequel there were fresh elements constantly added to the plot to keep things interesting. The jokes were better this time as well. So though I'm highly hyped about Aquaman and Spider-Man: Into the Spider-verse, as of now, Deadpool 2 will be my top pick.
Check out Deadpool 2 on IMDb
Harpreet Singh: Ashke
My favorite movie this year has been Ashke. It's a Punjabi movie that has the right amount of comedy, drama, and good music. They released its trailer just one day before the movie was supposed to release and it still did very well.
It's something you can enjoy watching with your entire family.
Watch Ashke on YouTube
Jagmeet Singh: Mission: Impossible – Fallout and Daana Paani
I found Mission: Impossible – Fallout to be among the best movies of 2018. The movie comes is the sixth installment in the Mission: Impossible franchise and features an action-packed experience. Tom Cruise, despite being a 56-year-old trouper, looks quite fresh and energetic in his role as an undercover agent.
In addition to Mission: Impossible - Fallout, Punjabi period movie Daana Paani starring Jimmy Shergill and Simi Chahal is the prominent title that I'd like to feature in this list. Shergill performed quite well in the movie, and 26-year-old Chahal did her best in performing the character of villager Basant. The story constructed by Jass Grewal has all good elements to entertain the audience and the movie highlights the message of living a peaceful life by surrendering to the will of God.
Director Tanvir Jagpal also managed to detail the core of the message throughout the movie. Lastly, you'll get a bunch of songs by distinguished singers such as Amrinder Gill, Harbhajan Mann, and Manmohan Waris that have the touch of Punjabi classics.
Watch Daana Paani on YouTube
Jamshed Avari: The Incredibles 2
Thanks to a lack of time and the routinely barbaric and illogical censorship that Indian cinemagoers have to deal with, I've let my list of movies to watch grow out of control. I did have to endure a few 10+ hour plane rides though, so I watched some of the obligatory big-banner titles.
My pick for the best of 2018 would be The Incredibles 2 (Review). After well over a decade of anticipation, it turned out to be good fun. The stakes were never really as high as they were in the first movie, and the main villain's identity was painfully obvious right from the start, but we got to see plenty of clever moments as “Supers” emerged from hiding.
Each of the main characters was fleshed out convincingly and the inversion of the family's roles was amusing enough. This could easily be developed into a massive franchise of movies and spin-off content... just as long as we're all still alive by the time the next one comes out.
Buy The Incredibles 2 on Google Play
Kunal Dua: Bohemian Rhapsody
I saw exactly four movies this year and none of them really stood out, but if I had to pick one I'd go with Bohemian Rhapsody. Yes, it's full of historical inaccuracies and it's hardly a classic, but the performances — Rami Malek has got to be a shoo-in for at least a nomination at the Oscars — and the sheer joy of revisiting Queen's classics — especially the concert at the end — make it well worth the price of admission.
Oh, and Mike Myer's cameo and the little Easter Egg (see the video below starting at 4:00) are a nice bonus.
Prabhakar Thakur: Deadpool 2
I watched a few good films this year including Mulk, Raazi, and Andhadhun. But I would pick Deadpool 2 as my favourite one simply because I found it very entertaining. This, when I had not watched the 2016 Deadpool. It was humourous from start to end and deserved my money.
Check out Deadpool 2 on IMDb
Pranay Parab: Annihilation
Just like Abhinav, I am a science fiction buff and it's no surprise that our favourite movie is the same. Annihilation had an excellent storyline and its setting reminded me of one of my favourite science fiction movies of all time - Andrei Tarkovsky's Stalker. You don't need an ensemble cast to make a good film and Annihilation is a great example of that.
As Abhinav has mentioned, the ending is open to interpretation and that is something I appreciate a lot particularly in science fiction. The only sad thing is that this movie never made it to theatres as the studio sold the rights directly to Netflix. While I got to watch it on day 1, this is exactly the kind of movie that's perfect for theatres. Watching it on my 22-inch monitor at home just didn't do justice to its atmosphere.
Watch Annihilation on Netflix
Rishi Alwani - Unforeseen Consequences: A Half-Life Documentary
My favourite movie of 2018 involves epic plot twists, superheroes game developers, and (the alleged) death (of a franchise). What's more is, it's not got the name Avengers in it either. Unforeseen Consequences: A Half-Life Documentary is a stunning recollection of how Valve's epic first-person shooter Half-Life influenced gamers and developers the world over.
Despite Valve not being involved in its creation, YouTube channel NoClip managed to get industry luminaries that worked on Half-Life expansion packs such as Randy Pitchford (Borderlands 2) and Vince Zampella (Titanfall 2) to reveal how Valve operates. With Half-Life 3 dead, the franchise's future lies with its fans who have kept it relevant thanks to an active modding community whose creations are explored here too. And if Half-Life's contribution to gaming culture isn't enough, this one hour and forty-seven-minute documentary is worth checking out just to see Pitchford drop an f-bomb regarding his dealings with Valve.
Watch Unforeseen Consequences: A Half-Life Documentary on YouTube
Roydon Cerejo: Hereditary
I enjoyed quite a few flicks this year but if I had to choose my favourite, it would have to be Hereditary. Easily one of the most chilling thrillers of 2018, I like the fact that the movie doesn't rely on jump scares or the usual horror movie tropes to achieve its goal.
The beauty of Hereditary is that there's no way of knowing which way the story is heading or guessing what's coming next, which is part of the thrill. It stars Toni Collette, who's done a brilliant job but really, the rest of the cast are great too. I'm not going to say anything more other than it's a must watch, if you love thrillers. It's not yet out on any streaming service as far as I'm aware, yet.
This is one movie that's sure to give you sleepless nights for a while.
Check out Hereditary on IMDb
Sandeep Sinha: Tumbbad
Tumbbad portrays several human traits such as greed so very well. It's a fictional film but the direction is so good that you can't take your eyes off the screen for even a second. The background score of this film makes it even better.
Watch Tumbbad on Amazon Prime Video
Shobhit Varma: A Private War
The movie that shook me to the core and left an indelible mark was Matthew Heineman's A Private War. It stars Rosamund Pike, who has given a career defining performance, as journalist Marie Colvin, who worked as a foreign affairs correspondent for The Sunday Times and died while covering the siege of Homs in Syria.
The dark and gritty movie takes you deep into the psyche of a journalist on the front lines and the unspeakable horror they experience right in front of their eyes. The movie also deftly sheds a light on the human cost of wars and never paints any side as the villain.
The cinematography is breathtaking and so is Rosamund Pike's portrayal of the central character, which is sure to fetch her multiple awards. A must watch.
Check out A Private War on IMDb
Sumit Garg: Avengers: Infinity War
No surprises here, I am choosing Avengers: Infinity War as my favourite movie. This is the only movie where characters from two famous Marvel series - Guardians of the Galaxy and Avengers - came together and fought under the same roof. The visual effects of the movie were super amazing and as I've read somewhere there were over 2,500 VFX shots in this movie.
Tarun Chadha: 2.0
I recently saw the film 2.0 in a theatre. I really enjoyed the acting of Akshay Kumar and Rajinikanth. It's not just a mindless action film, but it has taken up a serious issue as well. Its message resonates with me — our planet is not just for humans but it belongs to plants, animals, birds, and all other organisms too.
You'll also get to see the magic of nicely done visual effects in the movie.
Check out 2.0 on IMDb
Tasneem Akolawala: Badhaai Ho
Of the two movies I watched this year, Badhaai Ho was refreshing to see. Neena Gupta was a shining star in the lead role, and Gajraj Rao was superb. I loved how the movie depicted and handled the societal topic, and the comedy was top-notch. An entertaining watch.
Check out Badhaai Ho on IMDb
Yousuf Jawed: Bohemian Rhapsody
In May 2018, I watched the first teaser of Bohemian Rhapsody and waited for the movie till November. The movie didn't disappoint me. From the art direction to the actors' look, everything was so close to the real band members of Queen. I was sure about Rami Malek as an actor. But I was also impressed with Gwylim Lee as Brian too.
The final part of the movie - The Live Aid Concert - was the best musical section of movie. The cinematography in Bohemian Rhapsody blew my mind. The movement of the camera from backstage to front, then comes a cut to a flashback from Freddie Mercury's past.
The movie was the perfect package of music, drama, and emotion, based on a true story. Though there were some issues, I'll file those under creative liberty. However, 2018 will be the year of Bohemian Rhapsody for me.
Check out Bohemian Rhapsody on IMDb
Which are your favourite movies of 2018? Let us know via the comments.