The 55th Chicago International Film Festival has officially come to a close. Over the last twelve days, the festival showed numerous films from all different genres with various budgets from a number of different countries from all around the world. This is an incredibly diverse film festival and every year I am honored to attend it. I saw 26 films at this year’s festival and I would say it was a very good year at the festival. There were a number of great films I saw this year, including my favorite movie of 2019 so far. There were also no films that I truly disliked or hated. There were a few flawed ones, but none that I would truly consider a “bad” movie. Here are my picks for the best movies and performances from the 55th Chicago International Film Festival.
TOP 5 FILMS
5 – WAVES (Trey Edward Shults)
- Trey Edward Shults most ambitious film to date is an emotionally exhausting look at parenting, family, the pressures of growing up, and how to handle tragedy. This is a gorgeous film filled with stellar acting and great music choices.
4 – MARRIAGE STORY (Noah Baumbach)
- Noah Baumbach’s finest film to date is a heartbreaking and realistic look at one couple’s divorce featuring great writing and brilliant performances from Adam Driver and Scarlett Johannson.
3 – FORD V. FERRARI (James Mangold)
- A true American sports movie, Ford v Ferrari is an exhilarating racing film featuring top-notch direction from James Mangold, a smart screenplay, and a pair of excellent performances from Matt Damon and Christian Bale.
2 – KNIVES OUT (Rian Johnson)
- A slick, twisty, wildly entertaining whodunit from Rian Johnson featuring the best ensemble of 2019 and an ending you have to see to believe.
1 – THE IRISHMAN (Martin Scorsese)
- Smart, compelling, funny, and tense, with outstanding performances from Robert De Niro, Al Pacino, and Joe Pesci, and jaw-dropping usage of the de-aging technology, The Irishman is a bold new gangster classic from Martin Scorsese and the best movie I have seen in 2019.
BEST OF THE REST
BEST DIRECTOR: MARTIN SCORSESE, THE IRISHMAN
Runner Up: Rian Johnson, Knives Out
BEST ACTOR: ADAM DRIVER, MARRIAGE STORY
Runner Up: Robert De Niro, The Irishman
BEST ACTRESS: SCARLETT JOHANSSON, MARRIAGE STORY
Runner Up: Alfre Woodard, Clemency
BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR: JOE PESCI, THE IRISHMAN
Runner Up: Shia LeBeouf, Honey Boy
BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS: ZOE DEUTCH, ZOMBIELAND: DOUBLE TAP
Runner Up: Taylor Russell, Waves
BEST ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY: KNIVES OUT
Runner Up: Waves
BEST ADAPTED SCREENPLAY: THE IRISHMAN
Runner Up: Jojo Rabbit
BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY: PORTRAIT OF A LADY ON FIRE
Runner Up: Ford v Ferrari
BEST ENSEMBLE: KNIVES OUT
Runner Up: The Irishman
BEST MIDNIGHT MOVIE: ZOMBIELAND: DOUBLE TAP
Runner Up: Knives and Skin
BEST FOREIGN LANGUAGE FILM: LES MISERABLES
Runner Up: Portrait of a Lady on Fire
BEST DOCUMENTARY: JUMP SHOT
Runner Up: Ringside
1- THE IRISHMAN
2- KNIVES OUT
3- FORD V. FERRARI
4- MARRIAGE STORY
6- LES MISERABLES
7- PORTRAIT OF A LADY ON FIRE
9- HONEY BOY
10- ZOMBIELAND: DOUBLE TAP
11- BY THE GRACE OF GOD
12- JOJO RABBIT
16- THE APOLLO
17 – KNIVES AND SKIN
18- MOTHERLESS BROOKLYN
20- THE TRAITOR
21- INITIALS S.G.
22- GIRL ON THE THIRD FLOOR
25- 8: A SOUTH AFRICAN HORROR STORY
26- FORMAN VS FORMAN
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