Although 2016 still has a little bit of life left in it, unless Obama declares war on Russia sometime between now and Trump (That was a Mike joke, btw), I think it’s safe to say we can comfortably reflect on the year that was. Just about every publication out there wraps up their year with some kind of “in-review” article, which usually comes gussied up as some sort of non-existent awards ceremony. Well, why let lesser outlets like CNN and Sherdog and ESPN declare themselves the sole arbiters of what was important and outstanding over the last 365 days when you got your good buddy Jimbo right here to give it you straight and simple?
Below, you’ll find a few quick hits running down everything you need to know about the year that was in MMA, boxing, wrestling, movies, music, sports, literature, video games and even geopolitics. And I guess it also doubles as a Holiday shopping guide, too, so hooray for multi-purposing!
BEST FILM (DOMESTIC)
In a year where it seemed like everybody and their mother was trying to win over critics with preachy, identity-politics-driven Oscar bait, Mel Gibson returned from exile to give us not only one of the best war movies to come out in years, but a refreshingly apolitical drama celebrating true human compassion and valor – although I’m still wondering why Spider-Man didn’t use any of his powers, or even bother bringing his costume to the battlefield.
BEST FILM (INTERNATIONAL)
From the same guy who gave us RoboCop and Starship Troopers comes the most unorthodox rape-revenge movie you’ll ever see. Paul Verhoeven’s old school thriller doesn’t pull any punches, completely abandoning genre conventions to give us precisely the kind of envelope-pushing, adult-oriented entertainment Hollywood just doesn’t have the chorizo con huevos to even bother bankrolling anymore.
BEST FILM (DOCUMENTARY)
The Other Side
The absolute best account of post-recession life in the sticks I’ve ever seen. Roberto Minervini’s glimpse into the lives of the grimiest denizens of the bayou is pretty much what would happen if you put Werner Herzog and Harmony Korine in the telepod from The Fly and asked the mutant hybrid to make a documentary about gun-loving drug addicts in LSU country. And yes, it is every bit as amazing as it sounds.
BEST MOVIE THAT SUCKED
This straight-to-DVD turdfest (directed by, of all people, Chuck Norris’ brother) might just be the most unintentionally entertaining film of 2016. A really, really low budget ripoff of The Hunger Games, it concerns a gaggle of freedom fighters striking back after the United Nations(!) turns off America’s electricity so they can take away everybody’s guns. And if this sounds like something Alex Jones would fap to, it’s for good reason – America’s No.1 conspiracy theorist stars in it as a corrupt U.S. Senator!
The Exorcist III Collector’s Edition
I almost did a spit take the first time I saw this on store shelves. As quite possibly the greatest horror film nobody ever talks about, Shout Factory went above and beyond with this special edition re-release, which not only includes William Peter Blatty’s long sought after director’s cut, but an absolute ton of bonus featurettes and interviews, thus ensuring this one’s going to be getting plenty of spins come each and every Halloween season.