2017 Year in Review – 2017’s Five Coolest Characters

(Here’s last year’s list.)

Sometimes, when watching a movie, a certain character just resonates.  Maybe you want to be like them.  Maybe you wish you knew them in real life.  Maybe their very presence on-screen shifted the tone of the film and made it more interesting.  Or maybe you just knew that when they showed up, something sweet was about to happen.  In any of these cases, you probably think to yourself, “They.  Are so.  Cool.”  That’s what we’re celebrating, today.  Not the best characters, necessarily.  The coolest characters.  The characters you wish you were.  The characters you want to marry.  The characters that make you say, “AWWWWW, YEAH!”  These are . . .

2017’s Five Coolest Characters

Each of these characters must be NEW to film in 2017.

5. Steve Trevor (Chris Pine, Wonder Woman)

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Steve Trevor doesn’t always have the best luck, but he handles whatever comes his way with naught but class, charm, wit, and bravery.  As if crashing his plane in the middle of World War I isn’t crazy enough, he then meets – of all people – Wonder Woman.  Exuding great patience as she learns the way of a world she has never set foot in and great understanding when she wants to do the right thing, but in her own way, Trevor never once doubts that he is walking in her shadow, but he also never cares.  All he wants to do is end the war.  Getting the glory is irrelevant.  Trevor is Batman if Batman wasn’t rich.  Or an a-hole.  Trevor is who men should aspire to be in the real world.  (Original review.)

4. Rose Tico (Kelly Marie Tran, Star Wars: Episode VIII – The Last Jedi)

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Rose Tico found herself in an unfortunate position.  What if you found a role model of yours behaving irresponsibly and it was your responsibility to stop them?  Rose proved her mettle and her worth to the Resistance by consistently making the right choice when it was difficult.  But she also refused to allow herself to be limited by others’ perceptions of her.  She isn’t a world-class athlete.  She doesn’t possess a supermodel figure.  Rose is – by all intents and purposes – a common person.  But don’t try to convince her of that.  She helps save the day like any other great hero, she seemingly attracts the romantic attention of one of the Resistance’s most prominent figureheads, and she positions herself as invaluable to the security of the entire galaxy.  And she does it with nothing but her own competence and confidence.  Rey gets all the press (and she deserves it), but Rose is the one that truly makes the case for anyone becoming a hero.  (Original review.)

3. Valkyrie (Tessa Thompson, Thor: Ragnarok)

Our first impression of Valkyrie isn’t an especially good one.  But she doesn’t particularly care what any of us think.  Valkyrie fights, drinks, and swaggers her way through Ragnarok, searching for a place in life after losing everything she ever knew.  When she finds that place, she embraces it, while never coming across as anything but cool.  Her aloofness is genuine, yet so is her resolve and her heart.  Maybe you can outfight her.  Maybe you can outdrink her.  But she’ll still come out of it looking like the winner.  And did I mention that swagger?  Look above!  It even comes through in stills – no motion needed!  (Original review.)

2. Lorraine Broughton (Charlize Theron, Atomic Blonde)

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Lorraine Broughton practically beat the crap out of me.  As I sat there in a D-Box motion seat, watching the preview night screening of Atomic Blonde, I was slammed from side-to-side and front-to-back with every bone-crushing kick, brain-stopping palm strike, and elbow-snapping armbar.  And there were a lot of them.  As Lorraine was physically destroying people, she was also carrying out her own plan, her own way, and having her own sort of fun.  Completely (and justifiably) unapologetic, she moves from place to place, doing as she pleases and doing it all with pure, unadulterated style.  I had never had any sort of celebrity crush on Charlize Theron.  But after this performance and this character, that might changed, a little bit.  (Original review.)

1. Molly Bloom (Jessica Chastain, Molly’s Game)

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Throughout all of history, the world has undeniably been controlled and dominated by powerful men.  For centuries, it was simply accepted by most as the way it was supposed to be.  Few questioned it and, if they did, they were shot down and put in their figurative places.  And then that world – and those men – met Molly Bloom.  For her own benefit, Molly controlled and manipulated men who had spent their entire lives controlling and manipulating others for their own benefit.  These weren’t good men.  If Molly saw a good man mixed up in her business, she would reach out and try to guide him away.  She used the users.  She stayed a step ahead of them.  She outsmarted them.  And they were helpless to do anything about it – if they even realized it was happening, in the first place.  Molly is a real-world feminist icon who has come along at just the right time to send the message that the users and the liars don’t – and won’t – always win.  (Original review.)

Look at that!  Women ruled 2017, that’s for sure (and the list was very close to being all women.)!  I urge all of you to check each of these films out and pay these ladies and Mr. Pine their proper respect, both as performers and as characters.  Here’s to hoping that we see most of them, again, in future franchise films!  Thanks for reading and I’ll see you next time!

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