At The Digital Fix, we watch movies for a living which is just as fun as you’d expect. That said — don’t worry; we’re not asking for sympathy — the dynamic nature of our work means we don’t always get to write about our favourite films.
Shocking, I know, but it’s a harsh reality of the job. Just ask our staff writer Jakob; the poor guy had to put up with Moonfall and Morbius in the same year. So as a Christmas gift to ourselves, everyone on the team has been allowed to choose and write a little about their five favourite movies of 2022.
These are the team’s ‘Digital Pix of the year 2022’ they’re not necessarily the best movies of the year, but they are our favourites (don’t worry, we do have a list of the best 2022 movies). Expect horror movies, superhero movies, and even an indie film or two…
Jakob Barnes – Staff Writer
Matt Reeves delivers a fresh new take on the classic character, with Batman actor Robert Pattinson’s moody Bruce Wayne fitting right in among the grimy, gritty Gotham City. We’ve waited so long for a Batman detective movie, and now we can’t wait for more in The Batman 2.
The twisted mind of Jordan Peele has done it again, moving away from his horror movie roots to offer up a cerebral and surreal science fiction movie that not only looks gorgeous but has something incredibly pertinent to say, too.
The Banshees of Inisherin
2022 is Colin Farrell’s year, and he gives his most sincere and accomplished performance to date in this dark comedy movie. Both he and Brendan Gleeson have captivating chemistry in a film that will make you laugh out loud before silencing you by the end.
The ongoing development of artificial intelligence makes films like After Yang all the more prescient and unsettling, but this A24 movie has a beauty to it that will stick with you long after the credits roll. A robot movie with a heart, if you like.
Everything Everywhere All at Once
Who would have thought that a time travel movie involving sausage fingers and a reference to the Disney movie Ratatouille could provoke such strong emotions in its audience? You may end up having an existential crisis watching this movie, but it’s a fun crisis all the same.
Charlotte Colombo – Staff Writer
Because 2022 has been a big year for drama movies, I feel like Jennifer Lawrence and Brian Tyree Henry’s moving performance in this film has been overlooked. They channel an extraordinary depth in their performance, and their chemistry definitely carries this practically two-hander movie.
Roald Dahl’s Matilda: The Musical
Although I love Matilda and I love musicals, I didn’t expect to love the two together — I was too emotionally attached to the 1996 film. However, the talented cast brings such energy and heart to their performances it’s impossible not to love it.
Starring Paul Mescal and Frankie Coiro, I realised last-minute that I had to include Aftersun in my top five because weeks after seeing the movie, I still can’t listen to ‘Under Pressure’ without bawling. Mescal once again portrayed one of the most realistic and nuanced depictions of depression I’d seen. Coiro strikes the perfect balance between childlike innocence and a mesmerising depth and maturity in her role.
I’m the only one on The Digital Fix that isn’t a huge horror nerd, so I’ll admit I was a little worried about watching Nope. But as disturbing as some aspects of the film were, I feel like it gave a very necessary and timely message about the spectacle, trauma, and fame-chasing.
Another movie with a very timely theme; I’m obsessed with the fact that they made a whiny, fraudulent tech bro the villain of this story. A great antidote after a year of people trying to make me take NFTs seriously.
Fiona Underhill – Overnight Writer
The Banshees of Inisherin
Martin McDonagh returns to Irish characters and re-teams with In Bruges’ Colin Farrell and Brendan Gleeson in this hilarious but profoundly melancholy exploration of the breakdown of a longstanding friendship. Full of Irish literary and wildly theatrical influences. Barry Keoghan and Kerry Condon deliver outstanding support.
Crimes of the Future
Cronenberg went back to his body horror roots in 2022 and thank the gory gods because it’s exactly what we needed. A hilarious skewering of performance art with Viggo Mortensen and Lea Seydoux. Kristen Stewart delivers a thoroughly unhinged supporting performance, and Scott Speedman is also great.
All the Beauty and the Bloodshed
This documentary intercuts present-day footage of photographer and activist Nan Goldin’s campaign against oxycontin manufacturers Purdue with a biographical account of her life and work, providing vital context to her protests. It’s an exploration of the ’70s and ’80s New York art scene, juxtaposed with Goldin tackling art giants such as The Met and The Guggenheim and their financial ties to the Sackler family. Absolutely urgent and vital.
The Eternal Daughter
Joanna Hogg follows up her semi-autobiographical works The Souvenir Part I & II with this further examination of the character of Julie. Tilda Swinton plays the now middle-aged Julie and also plays her aging mother on a weekend away in an isolated and almost haunted hotel, with
plenty of Gothic fog shrouding the place. Swinton is just extraordinary.
Robert Eggers’ Viking epic stars Alexander Skarsgard as a man out for vengeance against his usurper-father Claes Bang in this take on the same Norse myth that inspired Hamlet. Anya Taylor-Joy, Nicole Kidman, and Bjork (!) all provide support. The cinematography and editing are
the stand-outs, with some jaw-dropping tracking shots of the stunning locations.
Emma Jane Betts – Staff Writer
Everything Everywhere All at Once
Everything Everywhere All At Once is easily my favourite film of 2022 because it is a great reminder of why we all love cinema. The multiverse story paired with family drama is creative, colourful, funny, sentimental, and just a joy to watch. Everything Everywhere All at Once is unmissable.
The Banshees of Inisherin
Who would have thought that my new favourite break-up movie would be about two Irishmen and their dying friendship? The Banshees of Inisherin sees Colin Farrell and Brendan Gleeson perform in one of the saddest yet darkly funny dramas seen in recent years. Friendship, mental health, and moving on is hard – and this film isn’t afraid to show that.
Guillermo del Toro’s Pinocchio
2022 was the year of Pinocchio, with three different movies released about the iconic puppet. However, Guillermo Del Toro’s stop-motion animated movie was hands down the best telling out of the fantastical bunch. Reframing the classic story against the backdrop of fascist Mussolini-era Italy, the film is dark, charming, and, most importantly, strikingly memorable.
The psychological period drama The Wonder is downright fascinating and simply a film that you won’t regret watching. Based on the real-life cases of ‘fasting girls’, it brilliantly explores themes of motherhood, femininity in Christianity, and feelings of societal entrapment. Florence Pugh is also yet again a force to be reckoned with – making The Wonder easily shine in the 2022 movie catalogue.
When a film absolutely devastates you, it has to end up on your list of top cinematic experiences of the year, right? Directed by Gaspar Noé and starring horror movie legend Dario Argento, Vortex is an existential journey about ageing, relationships, and death. Certainly one of Noé’s most still, cold, and yet effective films, Vortex left me broken, and I couldn’t recommend it highly enough.
Anthony McGlynn – Staff Writer
Wendell and Wild
A new Henry Selick movie is always something to celebrate, and Wendell and Wild is a worthy return for the animation master. His gorgeous, gothic sensibility is covered in gross-out humour, young Kat Elliot at the centre as an orphan who starts being visited by demons played by Jordan Peele and Keegan-Michael Key. It only gets weirder and more heartwarming there.
The Quiet Girl
Tá tús gné-fhad Gaeilge Cholm Bairéad chomh ceanúil agus chomh fonnmhar sin, go mbeifeá in ann barróg a thabhairt dó. Is tharchéimnitheach é an chaoi a nglacann sé agus a chomhcheanglaíonn sé cumha gan focal agus áilleacht chiúin, agus é níos teo fós ag solas na gréine i samhradh na hÉireann go luath sna hochtóidí.
(Translation if needed: Colm Bairead’s Irish language feature-length debut is so gentle and endearing you wish you could give it a hug. The way he captures and intertwines unspoken longing and quiet beauty is transcendental, made even warmer by the sunshine of an early ’80s Irish summer.)
Something in the Dirt
There’s mind-bending sci-fi, and then there’s mind-bending sci-fi made by Justin Benson and Aaron Moorhead. As with their cosmic chillers Resolution, Spring, and The Endless, Something in the Dirt is best experienced knowing as little as possible – just be ready for anything.
Triangle of Sadness
I wonder just how satisfying Ruben Ostlund figured seeing a cruise full of rich people wallow in their own excrement would be. Somehow, he might have understated the pleasure: Triangle of Sadness plays like a load of NPCs in a Hitman game just before Agent 47 shows up, and it’s almost as cathartic.
Nightclubbing: The Birth of Punk Rock in NYC
Before New York City had CBGB’s, there was Max’s Kansas City, a dive that flickered many flames for the punk rock wildfire of the ’70s. Nightclubbing takes us inside the venue’s grubby history, reminding you the vibe is more important than any one place or person.
James Osborne – Staff Writer
Watching The Northman is like travelling back in time, to sit in a longhall and listen to a Viking elder tell a mythic tale. A Viking would love it, and that’s the best compliment you could possibly give the movie.
Florence Pugh continued her path to world domination with The Wonder. From a purely aesthetic perspective, every single frame is composed like some dimly lit Rembrandt, while underneath the surface lies a complex and thoughtful meditation on the power of belief and how that can explode when it comes into contact with the reality of the physical world.
Prey is a tremendous amount of fun. After decades of disappointing Predator movies, Prey proved that the series still has life in it, and all it takes to mine that is a bit of imagination, inspiration, and some brutal kills.
Apollo 10½: A Space Age Childhood
Apollo 10½: A Space Age Childhood is a movie that dares to ask: is it possible for a director to make a movie about their childhood and its influence on their career that isn’t sappy, self-indulgent, and boring? With gorgeous rotoscope animation and razor-sharp writing, Apollo 10½: A Space Age Childhood shows exactly how to do it.
The ‘Sandlerenaissance’ doesn’t quite have the same ring to it as the ‘Brenaissance’, but Adam Sandler has continued his major uptick in form with the sports movie Hustle. Like in Uncut Gems, Sandler plays an obsessive, and it’s clearly a coat that suits him because Hustle is a hugely entertaining (and easy) watch.
Tom Percival – Editor
Top Gun: Maverick
Top Gun: Maverick is our blockbuster of the year, boasting out-of-this-world set-pieces and action scenes that’ll have even the coolest of Ice Man sat on the edge of their seat.
The Woman King
A historical epic in the vein of The Northman and Braveheart, The Woman King is an intense and gripping film that manages to be thoughtful and exciting at the same time. Is it Viola Davies’ best performance to date? It’s definitely up there.
The Hellraiser movies, Pinhead, and the Cenobites have always had a weird place in my heart, and I love their 2022 reinvention. True, they lost a little of their otherworldly horniness, but the design of these interdimensional pilgrims of pleasure and the brutalities of the kills more than made up for that.
The Banshees of Inisherin
I’ve tried to think of something profound to say about Banshees, but my colleagues have already done that, so instead, I’ll just be honest. I put this film on the list because I loved that little donkey.
Knives Out 2
Benoit Blanc comes into his own in a thrilling and wildly entertaining murder mystery. Come for Benoit Blanc’s Kentucky fried charm, stay for the incredible new cast of weird and wonderful characters.
Want to look ahead instead of backwards? Here’s the 2023 movies we can’t wait for.