2022 Wrap Up

I’m not sure if it’s just me, but I feel like the years go by faster as I get older.

2022 was another great year of movies. With some memorable visits to the theatre where my auditorium cheered during a viewing on opening day of Top Gun: Maverick to seeing Triangle of Sadness in Cannes, steps away from where the famous film festival takes place, this year will go down in the history books for me.

Moving back to Europe did change the way in which I ran this blog. Usually due to where I was at a certain point in time or the fact that certain films were released on different days was something I needed to adjust to. At least I was always able to fall back on my streaming platforms! All that being said, I look forward to what 2023 will have in store.

Without further ado, here are my top five best and worst films of the year:


  1. The Menu
  2. Triangle of Sadness
  3. Top Gun: Maverick
  4. Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery
  5. Black Panther: Wakanda Forever


  1. Deep Water
  2. Pinocchio
  3. The Weekend Away
  4. Disenchanted
  5. Roald Dahl’s Matilda The Musical

Roald Dahl’s Matilda The Musical

Based on the stage musical of the same name, Matilda (Alisha Weir) is an updated version of the classic 90s version. The story of an incredibly smart girl with a wild imagination, she’s misunderstood by her parents (Stephen Graham and Andrea Riseborough) and sticks to her books. It isn’t until she starts attending Crunchem Hall that she meets Miss Honey (Lashana Lynch) who can see her full potential.

I’d been debating checking this out for some time now. Having actually seen the musical in London, I more or less knew what to expect going into it. I remember feeling letdown and wondered how I would fare with the movie version of it. While there were some strong points, it mostly fell flat for me.

The first bright spot in the film was it’s casting. Weir made the role of Matilda her own. I found myself rooting for her throughout and actually really enjoying her performance. I liked the fact that Lynch was for Miss Honey. The only aspect that I wish had been fleshed out some more was her relationship with Matilda. I kept comparing theses scenes to the ones that the two characters shared before. At the end of the day, however, it was Emma Thompson as Ms. Trunchbull who shined the brightest. Had she not been in the film, I probably wouldn’t have bothered watching it.

In true musical fashion, the songs and choreography scenes were well done. Matilda’s opening song of Naughty was one of my favorites, as was the Revolting Children group number at the end. The rest, unfortunately, were not very memorable. On top of that, the set locations, particularly in the scenes where Matilda would tell her stories, were aesthetically pleasing to look at.

I think my problem with the film, aside from the fact that I was already hesitant because of my prior experience with it, was the fact that I simply love the original too much. I understand that this version is closer to the source material being more on the darker side, but I grew up with the other and couldn’t see past it.

Rating: ♥♥.5

Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery

When tech billionaire Miles Bron (Edward Norton) invites his mismatched group of friends to a private island in Greece for the weekend, he’s surprised to see that detective Benoit Blanc (Daniel Craig) has come along for the ride. Perhaps it’s for the better when somebody turns up dead.

To say that Glass Onion was my most anticipated film of the year is an understatement. Ever since I heard the news that Netflix bought the rights to two sequels, my excitement sky rocketed – 2019’s Knives Out is one of the best films I have ever seen. I cannot sing its praises enough, so Glass Onion had big shoes to fill. And when it was released in cinemas for a limited time in November and I couldn’t see it on the big screen, I swear it almost killed me.

Luckily the wait was worth it. This instalment was everything I had hoped it would be and more. I didn’t know how it was going to compare to its predecessor and I was scared I would be let down. But I was proven wrong. The mystery this time around was much more intricate, with many details scattered throughout as well as red herrings to throw us off course. The script was tight and full of fun jokes that worked perfectly.

Where the film really shines is in its cast. Edward Norton as Bron was a shoo in as the leader of the pack. Kate Hudson as Birdie Jay was brilliant and one of the best roles I have seen her in. Dave Bautista embodied Duke Cody to a T while Kathryn Hahn as politician Claire Debella and Leslie Odom Jr. as Lionel Toussaint were great additions. Then there was Jessica Henwick as Birdie’s assistant Peg and Madelyn Cline as Duke’s girlfriend Whiskey. Seeing Cline in something aside from Outer Banks was so exciting. Janelle Monáe was mesmerizing as Bron’s partner Andi Brand; it was clear she was hiding something and I just wanted to know what!

But it was Daniel Craig as Benoit Blanc who stole the show for me. I love everything about this character that director Rian Johnson created and I will never, ever get tired of him. The accent, the outfits (and we saw plenty of them this time around) and the fact that we learn more about him as these films go on, he is rapidly becoming one of my favorites ever.

As if you couldn’t tell, Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery completely rocked my world. It may have taken some time to get going, but once it did, it did not stop for one second. I already can’t wait to rewatch it again and again.

Rating: ♥♥♥♥♥

I Wanna Dance With Somebody

The Greatest of All Time. The Voice. Those are only some of the words that are used to sum up Whitney Houston. At the age of nineteen, Houston signed with Arista Records and the rest was history. Going on to win countless awards including six Grammys, she is one of the bestselling musical artists of all time.

When I watch a biopic, it is usually for one of two reasons: either I am a fan of the person in question and want to see their life played out on screen, or I know about said person, but not nearly as much as I probably should and I want to learn more. The latter is what occurred with I Wanna Dance With Somebody. Of course I knew of Houston and her iconic voice, but there was a lot that I didn’t know about her too. I was hoping the film would help shed some light on that.

Naomi Ackie starred as our leading lady and she was absolutely dazzling in the role. Not only did she resemble Houston in looks, she nailed those dramatic sequences and sold every musical number. It was hard to believe that wasn’t her actual voice, although let’s be real, would we want a movie about Whitney Houston without her actual voice? The rest of the cast gave brilliant performances as well. Stanley Tucci as agent Clive Davis, Ashton Sanders as husband Bobby Brown and Nafessa Williams as best friend Robyn in particular were standouts.

While the run time is a little long, I have to say that I only started feeling it around the two hour mark. At least we were treated with full musical performances – that medley at the AMAs still gives me goosebumps – and not snippets of them. Unfortunately it did feel as though some integral moments in the star’s life were cut short. There was obviously a lot they wanted to shine a light on, but some parts were skipped over rather quickly. I can’t help but wonder if a limited series would have been better suited to properly tackle the material.

That being said, I Wanna Dance With Somebody was a rather enjoyable, if not a completely heartbreaking story. The performances were knockouts and the music had me singing and dancing in my seat. Definitely a great last movie to see in the cinema this year!

Rating: ♥♥♥.5

Guillermo Del Toro’s Pinocchio

By now we should know the story of Pinocchio, a wooden puppet, who was magically brought to life. After all, this is the third adaption that we’ve had this year alone. And how can we forget the original 1940’s Disney classic? So I won’t bore you with the plot details. What I will say is that there was a lot of hype surrounding Del Toro’s version as it was considered to be the most unique of them all. I can’t say that I disagree!

The best part, hands down, has to be the way in which this was filmed. Stop motion animation is something that we don’t get to see all too often anymore. To have this featured throughout was so refreshing and interesting that it kind of took my breath away at times. Seeing each character, location and object come to life in this way was really cool.

All the characters that we know and love were brought to life by some wonderful voicing talents. Ewan McGregor as Cricket was by far my favorite, who served not as Pinocchio’s guide and conscious, but also the narrator of the story. Alongside him were David Bradley as Geppetto, Cate Blanchett as Spazzatura, Christoph Waltz as Count Volpe and Tilda Swinton as Wood Sprite. Each brought something special to their roles.

Before settling in to watch, it is important to keep in mind that this version of Pinocchio is very different than anything we’ve seen before. There is a much darker element that I wasn’t quite prepared for. In some ways it worked – for example, learning about Geppetto’s life with his son Carlo and the horrific way in which he died added some oomph to the story and broke my heart into a million pieces. But there were other areas in which I thought it was overdone.

I don’t know what I expected going into Guillermo Del Toro’s Pinocchio, but it wasn’t what we got. There were some aspects that I really enjoyed and overall I do believe it’s the best adaptation we’d had this year. That being said, I spent a lot of the movie feeling confused. Who was the target audience supposed to be? At times it felt it was geared towards children, but then there were scenes that even I’m sure will give me nightmares. I also don’t think setting it in fascist Italy worked as well as it could have.

My opinion may be an unpopular one, but oh well. Maybe I’m just ready for an entirely different Disney classic to be adapted.

Rating: ♥♥♥

Something From Tiffany’s

Based on the novel of the same name by Melissa Hill, Something From Tiffany’s is a charming new romcom that is perfect for the holiday season. It follows Rachel Meyer (Zoey Deutch), a restauranteur who has been waiting longer than she’d like to admit for her longterm boyfriend Gary (Ray Nicholson) to propose to her. When a crazy mix up happens that lands Gary in hospital and his gift for Rachel is accidentally mistaken for someone else’s, Ethan Greene (Kendrick Sampson) enters the picture. Planning to propose to his own girlfriend Vanessa (Shay Mitchell), he’s stumped when she opens a set of earrings instead of a diamond ring. Can he and his daughter Daisy (Leah Jeffries) fix this in time for Christmas?

The first word that comes to my mind when I think about this movie is cute. Super duper cute. It has all the perfect ingredients for a feel good romantic comedy that is so necessary at this time of the year. With the New York City backdrop, I was sucked in from the get go. It was as if the city served as its own character. Seeing the twinkling lights, beautiful decorations on storefronts and buildings alike and the Christmas trees, I really felt that holiday spirit.

Deutch and Sampson had great chemistry together. As soon as their characters met, I was anxiously awaiting how their journey would carry out. While it took awhile to navigate and figure out, I am glad that they were able to lay some ground work in regards to their relationship. Starting off as friends and realizing over time that they actually had feelings for one another was done well. I also liked the way in which Rachel connected with Daisy over the fact that they both lost their moms at a young age. They developed a lovely friendship themselves and Rachel even taught Daisy how to bake bread!

As soon as I heard about Something From Tiffany’s, my interest was peaked. Especially considering the fact that Reese Witherspoon and Hello Sunshine were producing it. I knew it wasn’t going to rock my world by any means, but I enjoyed it for what it was. It was just what I needed at the time and I look forward to revisiting it in the future.

Rating: ♥♥♥