Sure. You can use the Oscar Nominations announced this morning as a good gauge of 2016's best films. But you know what? MIX/VHS saw some amazing stuff too, and we believe we edge out the Academy just a little bit in creditability + merit in recognizing quality cinema.  Just by a little bit, though. So with that, check out these TOP 10 FILMS of 2016 lists made by all of our Cinemaker blog Editors and Contributors in this very special MIX/VHS BEST of 2016 special!


Carrie | Community Director + Blog Editor-in-Chief

  1. Hunt for the Wilderpeople This movie has so much heart and humor I can't recommend it highly enough.
  2. La La Land I've never seen anything quite like this.  The last scene tore me up in the best way possible, and I honestly haven't stopped thinking about this movie since seeing it.
  3. TOWER
  4. Swiss Army Man
  5. Operation Avalanche What these filmmakers are doing behind the scenes is pretty great.  For sure worth keeping an eye on what they are up to.
  6. The Nice Guys Yes, multiple Gosling movies in my top 10.  Get over yourself.  This has great style and was terribly underrated.
  7. Don’t Think Twice
  8. collective: unconscious If you want to feel like you've been truly hypnotized by a film, this is it.  Somehow this collective of filmmakers makes you feel like you are dreaming what's on the screen.  A really interesting experiment in filmmaking.
  9. Hush
  10. Deadpool

Spencer | Community Coordinator + Blog Editor

  1. 20th Century Women 2 minutes after the movie had ended, my face was still buried in my hands. Weeping. Mike Mills doesn't make movies about great characters. He makes movies about great people. Incredibly layered, beautifully photographed, wisely written, delicately and truthfully performed by Annette Bening and the entire ensemble: The list of amazing aspects of this piece could fill a book. 20th Century Women is cinema at its finest
  2. La La Land It razzled. It dazzled. It was pretty much everything I thought it was going to be. And yet, within the first four bars of the opening number, I found myself grinning like a god damn idiot for the rest of the film, and continued to do so days after. 
  3. Arrival Ethereal and earthy aesthetic coupled with a quietly loud story of our world's paranoia to just fucking work together, this is evolution of the science fiction genre. When a film much more about language and communication than CGI extraterrestrials blowing up New York City yet again still has the most impressive alien designs in cinema, you know you've got a winner. 
  4. TOWER
  5. Hunt for the Wilderpeople
  6. Moonlight
  7. Swiss Army Man
  8. Moana
  9. Don’t Think Twice
  10. The Invitation

The Lenz Twinz | Blog Contributor 

  1. The Lobster Erie dystopian dark comedy that'll make you question modern relationships and how we deal with them. Beyond cinematic.
  2. Swiss Army Man Truly in a league of its own, between the killer effects and lovely storytelling. Must see for a journey that'll keep you guessing till the end.
  3. The Lovers and The Despot Documentary adaptation of the book 'A Kim Jong-Il Production', which tells the amazing true story of the kidnapping and escape of South Korea's most renown director and actress of the mid century.
  4. Holy Hell
  5. Total Chaos: The Story of The Stooges
  6. The Confessions of Thomas Quick
  7. The Handmaiden
  8. La La Land
  9. Sing Street
  10. Miss Peregrine's Home For Peculiar Children

JJ | Blog Contributor 

  1. Green Room The last film to have me this unequivocally glued to the screen was Whiplash, which unsurprisingly was my top movie of 2014. One hour and thirty five minutes of dread-filled tension, populated with fantastic performances by Anton Yelchin and the always understated Patrick Stewart (mother of god we need him to take more roles as a villain). Above all else, this movie felt real. The punk subculture, the white supremacist way of thinking, the way the characters responded, it all just clicked. Do yourself a favor and watch it. On an empty stomach.
  2. Hunt for the Wilderpeople This movie feels like the type of mid-budget, humanist fare that was big in the '90s and since gone the way of grunge and Tamagotchi. Or maybe that's just my nostalgia talking. Regardless Wilderpeople is a badass romp into young Kiwi Ricky Baker's quest to find a family, with plenty of heart to spare and arguably the most underrated soundtrack of the year.
  3. The Nice Guys I'll watch basically anything that involves Ryan Gosling doing comedy, and The Nice Guys is no exception. In the age of comedic bankruptcy, where audiences are forced to choose between improv-vomit Feig films and the Rock's non-Fast & Furious filmography, Shane Black seems to be the only writer left who can dish out a joke. Sure, the platter might be bloodstained, but the darkness in the humor makes it that much funnier. Also who doesn't love Hannibal Buress making a cameo as a giant talking bee?
  4. Operation Avalanche

    This is my 'I saw it before people knew it was a great movie' hipster pick, but dammit if this doesn't have lost film treasure written all over it. The premise alone, combining the controlled chaos of the mockumentary format with the conspiracy-heist genre, is absolutely brilliant. The fact that the filmmakers made it under, shall we say, less than honest conditions? Even better.

  5. The Lobster I've never felt worse about being single. Or being in a relationship.
  6. Moonlight
  7. Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping
  8. Don’t Think Twice
  9. Don’t Breathe
  10. Midnight Special

Jake | Blog Contributor 

  1. Don’t Think Twice This film is a brutally honest portrayal of what it means to put yourself, your mentality, and your best attributes on the line and in front of the public. It is hilarious, well-acted, and incredibly real.
  2. Everybody Wants Some!! Richard Linklater's spiritual sequel to Dazed and Confused is kinetic, funny, relatable, beautiful, and poetic in all the ways that his best films can be. Where some of his films meander, this film is focused. I love it.
  3. La La Land Damien Chazelle returns to the filmmaking foray with a beautiful, calming, and surprisingly sad portrayal of aspirations and ideals in the cutthroat world of Los Angeles. Anyone who has had a passion or pursuit in some form or another will connect to this film immediately, and the musical nature of the film only helps keep the fluidity moving.
  4. Nocturnal Animals
  5. Arrival
  6. The Neon Demon
  7. Hell or High Water
  8. Certain Women
  9. The Nice Guys
  10. Rogue One: A Star Wars Story


We will be BACK to our original weekly MIX/VHS mis recommendations starting next Wednesday, February 1st. But for now, go see these movies + enjoy!