2017 Underrated Films Crome YellowAfter watching about 180+ films this year, this post is a necessity. I have a top 20 list releasing in the next week, but this selection belongs to a series of films that I truly loved, and wished more people saw. Most of these flew under the radar, were unfairly dismissed, or just too small for people to even know of. From one film fan to another, please hunt down these genuine gems and give them a chance. Quite a few are from Netflix, so, happy hunting!

I Don't Feel at Home in This World Anymore Elijah Wood Melanie LynskeyI Don’t Feel at Home in this World Anymore: Blue Ruin and Green Room actor Macon Blair made his directorial debut with this Netflix-acquired film, and it’s a doozy. It’s a film for anyone who’s ever had a bad day, and it’s both excruciatingly painful and funny to watch. Melanie Lynskey and Elijah Wood are two oddballs that we can’t help but fall for, and the film has a lot more heart than most films could ever dream of. Since it’s streaming, you got no excuse to miss it.

Bad Batch trailer Suki WaterhouseThe Bad Batch: In which director Ana Lily Amirpour follows up A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night with a severe left turn, and gets punished for it. I feel that most people simply weren’t ready for this one. It’s a shockingly prophetic film that was made pre-Trump era, but captures post-election times with a silver lining. Amirpour’s heroes are dejected, flawed people who in any other film would be background noise. Here, they get their chance to shine. FULL REVIEW

Bitch review Jason Ritter Jaimie KingBitch: A stunning film all around, and a feminist horror story that should be mandatory viewing. Director Marianna Palka subverts societal norms and comes out with a film that surprises in every way, swapping gender roles with perverse glee. After years of being marginalized and taken for granted, what if women literally turned into dogs? Spoilers: the results would be disastrous. FULL REVIEW

Meyerowitz Stories Review Elizabeth Marvel Adam Sandler Ben StillerThe Meyerowitz Stories (New and Selected): Another film that got buried on Netflix but and demands to be seen. Noah Baumbach’s portrait of family dysfunction makes us laugh until it hurts. Or do we laugh because it’s our only escape from the pain? Ben Stiller and Adam Sandler are unmissable in this sweet, but volatile comedy. FULL REVIEW

Villainess review Kim Ok-bin stillThe Villainess: This film stings like lightning and has action that’ll make you loose your breath. The story rips pretty openly from La Femme Nikita, but Byung-gil Jung’s eye for chaos and star Ok-bin Kim’s tormented heroine are a must. The opening battle is presented via uninterrupted, first-person POV, and it’s one of the most rapturously demented things you’ll see all year. FULL REVIEW

Burden documentary reviewBurden: If you live in Los Angeles, then you’ve probably experienced the beauty of Chris Burden’s post modern art installations first hand, even if you didn’t realize it. This documentary chronicles the incendiary artist’s final years, reminiscing on his rise to fame and truly shocking antics in a way that’s mesmerizing and even touching. It’s easy to forget how Burden pushed himself and those around him, reclassifying the definition of art on his way to becoming an icon. FULL REVIEW

Truman film review Ricardo Darin Javier CamaraTruman: Cesc Gay’s film was talked about by too little, and seen by even less. It’s a tender, resonant tale of friendship, framed by untimely cancer and a cute dog named Truman. Stars Ricardo Darin and Javier Camara are charismatic and raw – mark my words, this film will make you cry, so don’t forget the tissues. FULL REVIEW

Band-Aid review Zoe Lister-Jones Adam PallyBand-Aid: Zoe-Lister Jones wrote, starred and directed this film with an all-female crew. It’s about a married couple who decide to turn their angst into songs. The songs, as it turns out, are incredible, and the film gives us a complex view on love, women and marriage. If you’re sick of rom-coms, this is the cure. FULL REVIEW

Wind River Elizabeth Olsen Jeremy RennerWind River: Batting 100% with his phenomenal scripts for Sicario and Hell or High Water, actor-turned-writer-turned-director Taylor Sheridan took control of his latest script, a murder mystery set on a Native American reservation. You want a tip? Don’t read anything else about the film and go into it blind. It’ll knock you out cold.

Ingrid Goes West review Elizabeth Olsen Aubrey PlazaIngrid Goes West: More and more films are being made about social media, but very few of them have the same bite as this sharp satire. Aubrey Plaza and Elizabeth Olsen are at the top of their game, and O’Shea Jackson Jr nearly steals the show as a Batman-obsessed, wannabe screenwriter. Films like this lay out our obsession with digital facsimile in a way that’s brutal, but it’s still one of the funniest films of the year. Just see it okay? #Awesome FULL REVIEW

T2 Trainspotting review Jonny Lee Miller Ewan McGregorT2 Trainspotting: Danny Boyle shows everyone how to do a perfect, meaningless sequel. The original left things up in a the air in a way that felt appropriate. More than twenty years later, the cast has still got it, and Boyle transforms a story about drug addiction into a sobering film about being trapped by the memories of our past. This thing is pulsing with energy, a stellar soundtrack and performances that are more hypnotic than ever. FULL REVIEW

Mudbound Garrett Hedlund Jason MitchellMudbound: Dee Rees’ period piece is a piercing reflection of modern day, following two families during WWII who are given certain graces because of harrowing racial tensions. It’s a wrenching reminder that no matter the color of our skin, we both come from and end up in the dirt – and that it’s the space in the middle, how we treat each other that matters. Those last twenty minutes are almost unbearable.

Killing of a Sacred Deer review Colin Farrell Nicole KidmanThe Killing of a Sacred Deer: Following up his masterpiece, The Lobster, director Yorgos Lanthimos crafted one of his most terrifying films to date. Unlike most films, his latest doesn’t have to explain itself. There are some slight supernatural overtones, but Lanthimos makes sure that the intent hits more than the logic. With this unburdened approach, the darkness that hides in the corners of his films steps to the front for a full on assault. FULL REVIEW

Free Fire review Ben WheatleyFree Fire: A dozen incompetent gangsters. Flaming egos. A crumbling warehouse. Enough bullets to start a war. That’s all you need in Ben Wheatley’s latest, which takes a locked room premise to new heights. The characters and dialogue hit as hard as the bullets, making this thing a relentless barrage of gunfire and unabashed wit. Minute-to-minute, one of the most fun films of the year. FULL REVIEW

Hounds of Love reviewHounds of Love: Let’s get this out of the way fast – this film is extremely hard to watch. If there are people who can’t make it through, I don’t blame them. Still, underneath Ben Young’s sick kidnapping story, is a horror film that understands the psychology behind its terror. This isn’t an endurance test for the sake of shock, but a confrontation of the darkness that grows unchecked without hope. In facing evil, Young finds a silver lining for those brave enough to see things through. FULL REVIEW