What if they cut off the year in movies at half time and we had to pick the best of 2018 only from those films that opened before July 1st? True, there was a lot of crap out there, from Action Point and Fifty Shades Freed to Gotti and Superfly. But don’t panic: It only seems like everything sucked. There were more than a few bright spots that could be glimpsed amid the Hollywood muck.
In fact, director Ryan Coogler looks likely to lead the charge to make Black Panther the first Marvel epic to persuade Oscar voters sit up and start casting ballots. Toni Collette (Hereditary), Ethan Hawke (First Reformed), Emily Blunt (A Quiet Place) and Joaquin Phoenix (You Were Never Really Here) are already being touted for acting awards. And if non–live-action films get better this year than Brad Bird’s The Incredibles 2 and Wes Anderson’s Isle of Dogs, then we’re in for an animated renaissance. Here, in alphabetical order, are my picks for the 10 best movies of 2018 so far.