2017 year in review: critics vs the box office

Daniel Kaluuya stars in Jordan Peele's critical movie hit 'Get Out'

New Zealand film critics’ choice of their best film of the year as Get Out follows a solid endorsement by similar international polls.

Get Out was released in June but made little headway at the box office, finishing 69th on Mojo’s 2017 list with takings of about $545,000.

It starts as a Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner? premise with a young black man meeting his white girlfriend’s parents for the first time. But it then becomes a paranoid horror/thriller, detouring into unexpected laughs without alleviating the overall tension.

A poll of 40 critics published by Sight & Sound also ranks Get Out at the top, as does a survey by the IndieWire website and this meta-list of critical opinion.

But unlike their global colleagues, Kiwi critics also gave thumbs up to local hero Taika Waititi’s box office hit Thor: Ragnarok, which they ranked fourth after Dunkirk and Blade Runner 2049.

The poll was compiled by movie website Flicks.co.nz, owned by NZX-listed Vista, while the critics work for mainstream media titles such as the Dominion Post, NZ Listener, NZ Herald and Sunday Star-Times or for Newshub, Newstalk ZB, RNZ's The Wireless, The Spinoff and Stuff.

Last year, Waititi's Hunt for the Wilderpeople grossed a record-breaking $12.1 million.

Kiwi-made Waru, a low-budget production linking eight single-take episodes of 12 minutes each, ranked fifth.

The others, in order, are: The Killing of a Sacred Deer, Call Me By Your Name, Baby Driver, Moonlight and A Ghost Story.

Meanwhile, Mojo’s compilation of New Zealand’s yearly box office takings (to Dec 24) shows Thor: Ragnarok still holding top place at $7 million after the latest Star Wars episode (The Last Jedi) dropped 66% in its second weekend, boosting its total to $5.2 million.

However, it's likely to overtake second-placed Beauty and the Beast’s $6.3 million and Dunkirk’s $5.9 million as the other top box office champions of 2017.

Disclosure: Nevil Gibson participated in the Kiwi critics' poll. Half of his picks made the top 10.

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