Top Films and Performances of 2015; 10 Achievements the Oscars Better Not Forget

Last year – Oct. 21 to be exact – hordes of fanboys celebrated Back to the Future Day, which was the date in which Marty McFly traveled to save his children in Back to the Future Part II. Well, fittingly, the cinematic year of 2015 was all about going back in time. Some of the year’s best films and performances were creatively derived from 1970s and 1980s classics (ie. Star Wars, Creed, Mad Max: Fury Road. Rather than elaborate beyond this, I’m just going to plow right into my “tops” of last year. Everyone put out a list of “bests,” and yes, I’m going to be “that guy” who right another. Hey, at least I’m doing it in a gimmicky kind of way, right? I’m posting my top 20 performance and top 15 films of the year. Get it? 20 and 15 as in 2015. I’m original, unique, and awesome. Um, no. Anyway, read on (the performances aren’t in order but the films are) and weigh in below.

A-Sides’ Top 20 Performances of 2015
1. Alicia Vikander – Ex Machina
2. Matt Damon – The Martian
3. Eddie Redmayne – The Danish Girl
4. Sylvester Stallone – Creed
5. Jennifer Jason Leigh – The Hateful Eight
6. Brie Larson – Room
7. Jacob Tremblay – Room
8. Benecio Del Toro – Sicario
9. Emily Blunt – Sicario
10. Leonardo DiCaprio – The Revenant
11. Charlize Theron – Mad Max: Fury Road
12. Samuel L. Jackson – The Hateful Eight
13. Michael Fassbender – Steve Jobs
14. Saoirse Ronan – Brooklyn
15. Alicia Vikander – The Danish Girl
16. Paul Dano – Love & Mercy
17. Michael Keaton – Spotlight
18. Rooney Mara – Carol
19. Harrison Ford – Star Wars: The Force Awakens
20. Daisy Riley – Star Wars: The Force Awakens

A-Sides’ Top 15 Films of 2015
1. Inside Out
2. Star Wars: The Force Awakens
3. Ex Machina
4. Creed
5. The Martian
6. Kingsman: The Secret Service
7. The Hateful Eight
8. Spotlight
9. The Revenant
10. Sicario
11. Me and Earl and the Dying Girl
12. Montage of Heck
13. Steve Jobs
14. The Danish Girl
15. Anomalisa

Ten Achievements the Oscars Better Not Forget
1. Sylvester Stallone – Creed (* I think he’ll pull it out but this category is highly competitive.)
2. Charlize Theron – Mad Mad: Fury Road
3. Alicia Vikander in Ex Machina Alicia Vikander in The Danish Girl
4. Ben Salisbury and Geoff Barrow’s Ex Machina score
5. Star Wars: The Force Awakens snagging a Best Picture nod
6. Inside Out nabbing Best Picture and screenplay nods
7. Rachel McAdams did stellar work in True Detective Season 2 and matches it in Spotlight – nominate her for Best Supporting Actress
8. The Hunting Ground’s “Til It Happens to You” shouldn’t be left off the Best Original Song list.
9. Sicario is going to get shut out, but at least nominate Del Toro.
10. Johnny Depp was good in Black Mass, but as good as he was – the performance is nowhere near the performances by other leading actors including Will Smith in Concussion, Abraham Attah in Beasts of No Nation, Bryan Cranston in Trumbo, and countless others (some listed in my, um, first list above).

About A-Sides with Jon Chattman:
Jon Chattman’s music/entertainment series features celebrities and artists (established or not) from all genres performing a track, and discussing what it means to them. This informal series focuses on the artist making art in a low-threatening, extremely informal (sometime humorous) way. No bells, no whistles — just the music performed in a random, low-key setting followed by an unrehearsed chat. In an industry where everything often gets overblown and over manufactured, Jon strives for a refreshing change. Artists featured on the series include Imagine Dragons, Melissa Etheridge, Air Supply, Joe Perry, Alice Cooper, fun, Bleachers, Charli XCX, Marina and the Diamonds, and Bastille.

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