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The urge is understandable to avoid a retrospective of the year 2016. Not since Lot’s wife decided to take a cheeky glance back at Sodom has looking back at something been more likely to produce misery and misfortune the way this year has, but that only makes it all the more important to go back over the few bright spots, particularly for movie lovers. 2016 was undoubtedly a great year for Irish cinema, with 9 Oscar nominations and two wins, Irish films showing prominently in festivals around the globe, major stars and filmmakers coming to film on the island and some eye-catching box office success. Of course, 2016 is a year that will always stand out to the writers at Film In Dublin, as this was the year that the site launched and since mid-July we’ve worked hard to show you the positives and the pitfalls of navigating through the fair city of cinema.

With the year almost over, our writers have compiled a list of some of this year’s cinematic highlights. Balloting every member for their own top picks of the year, a consensus was more or less reached on ten outstanding films, cinema that provided a welcome distraction from the horrors of the last twelve months, helped sharpen our focus from the lessons to be learned from the year, or both. We’re sure to have left out some of your favourites; in keeping the list to the very best of the best we’ve had to omit some of our own best loved choices so we’re more than open to suggestions on what else could have been considered. Here though, are Film In Dublin’s picks for the top 10 films of 2016.Read more…

Director: Tom Ford Starring: Amy Adams, Jake Gyllenhall, Michael Shannon, Aaron Taylor-Johnson Running Time: 116 minutes

A family on a road trip is run off the road by a car of dangerous, drunk men. The score goes deathly silent. There are many voices, but everything is shot in darkness and we don’t know half of the characters and everyone is talking over each other. It’s disorienting. Faux-friendliness and sudden social rules set up to be arbitrarily broken. And punished. Fake offense. Say the wrong thing and get in trouble. Say nothing and get in trouble. It’s a nightmare scenario we all fear, some more than others, one where everything goes wrong at once and it’s impossible to keep track of the situation as it spins rapidly out of control. Suddenly, Jake Gyllenhall is outside his car and his wife, teenage daughter and the dangerous drunk men are inside. The men drive away. Lives are ruined and ended. The audience’s stomachs collectively drop out.

But it isn’t real. It’s just a story Amy Adams is reading. But then that isn’t real either. It’s all still tense and horrifying. It’s Nocturnal Animals.

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