- Age of Ultron. Marvel fangirl that I am, I, of course, had to go see the second Avengers movie. To be honest, the first Avengers is probably one of my least favorite MCU films because I get just a little annoyed when a team movie focuses primarily on one character instead of the team as a whole (also, Cap's characterization just isn't there for me). I enjoyed Age of Ultron better, but I still felt it was too Tony-centric. I did really like the dynamics of the team, even if I thought the focus on Tony should have been shifted to other characters. To me, though, Age of Ultron seemed more like a transition — a hint at what's to come in Civil War and Ragnarok as well as Black Panther and the Infinity Wars. I'm so happy with the new Avengers line-up, and I really can't wait to see them in action!
- Mad Max. Mad Max was a complete surprise for me. It wasn't even on my radar until first reviews came out, praising its feminist undertones. Because of this, I had to check it out. The film is, unsurprisingly, very over the top with it's portrayal of violence and does get quite graphic, but what really impressed me was the female narrative and how, even though the abuse directed at women was certainly implied, it wasn't explicitly shown. I loved how Max was there to help Furiosa in her quest, but didn't take the spotlight away from her or twist it to his own ends. The scenes were visually stunning and so impressive, and I could hardly care that the cars didn't exactly make sense.
- Ant-Man. Oh man, where do I start with Ant-Man? Originally, I wasn't too excited about it. All the development issues and conflicts with Edgar Wright (I'm a big fan of Edgar Wright, by the way) left me a bit shakey about it. Also, I just couldn't believe they were going to focus on Scott Lang instead of Hank Pym and Janet van Dyne. You know, founding Avenger who actually gave the group its name, Janet van Dyne, the Wasp? But I went to see it because, hey, it's Marvel, and I am a person with very little will power. Also because I heard whisperings of rumors that my favorite, Captain America related characters were going to be in it (and, oh man, that after credits scene). Overall, I loved Ant-Man. On top of cameos from some of my favorite MCU characters like Peggy and Sam, the writing was excellent, and I absolutely adored how they basically turned a heist movie into an origin story. I'm so looking forward to Hope taking up her mother's title (and super relieved that while there was a romance element to the characters, it didn't come to the forefront of the script), and I'm super excited to see what else will come from these characters as they get more immersed into the world of the Avengers.
- Inside Out. I'm pretty sure I cried the majority of the time I was watching Inside Out, which is kind of a feat considering I was at a dine-in movie theater and trying to eat dinner. Inside Out was such a wonderful movie, balancing happy moments with sad (which I suppose was one of the main takeaways from it). I'm really glad to see the improved quality of discourse around mental health and depression that has come out of people going to see it, and I love how it continues to show that animated films targeted to children can successfully tackle and really breakdown super complex ideas.
- Call the Midwife. Call the Midwife is a show that's been on my Netflix queue for awhile now, but it took two of my friends rounding up people to cosplay as midwifes at Dragon Con for me to actually sit down and watch it. I can't believe it took me this long. I'm a big fan of 1950s settings and of dynamic female friendship, and this show exhibits both exceptionally well. It's a roller coaster of a show, and I can hardly get through most episodes without crying, but the way it's framed heavily implies hope amid the heartbreak.
- Kill la Kill. I think the best way how to explain why I watched Kill la Kill is that my boyfriend recommended it. I was a bit hesitant about it because a few aspects of the first couple episodes rubbed me the wrong way. I did get through the series, though, and ended up liking it quite a bit, especially as the plot continued ramping up. Some of it was pretty out there in terms of violence and the jiggle physics didn't make a whole lot of sense to me, but I suppose that's a bit par for the course. In any case, I really enjoyed the development of the characters (especially of Mako) and how internally consistent the whole mess of crazy actually was.