Best Films Released in 2023

A Deep Dive Into the Popular Cinematic
The empty seats at the end of a movie in a cinema in Belgium. Everyone left with the feeling they watched something important which impacted their life.
The empty seats at the end of a movie in a cinema in Belgium. Everyone left with the feeling they watched something important which impacted their life.
Alice Tomasovic

Barbie, Oppenheimer, Hunger Games… so many movies in one year. Some disappointed us, others impressed us. Today, we are here to sort through this year’s films. 

In this article, I’ll talk to you about seven movies. Not five or 10 like always, just the most  important movies I saw, and in this case, there are seven of them. 

I’d like to point out that these movies are not especially my favorite. However, if they are here, it’s that I still felt the need to talk about them.


1.Guardians of the Galaxy Vol.3, Released May 5

Written and directed by James Gunn, this movie was most likely never to exist. Indeed, Gunn got fired from the film. It seems that publishing controversial posts on Twitter is not one of the values ​​promoted by Disney. This decision makes sense. However, to the delight of fans and for the sake of the movie, the company decided to rehire him a few months later, which allowed him to finish it.

This being the 31st Marvel movie and the third one of its saga, the film was a huge success. 

The movie starts with a bloody attack in the base of the Guardians, some protectors of the galaxy, during which one of the protagonists, Rocket Raccoon, is seriously injured. As his name says, he’s a raccoon, however, he has been humanized by a high-evolution society. His creator, called High Evolutionary, built him so that no one could cure him unless they had a certain code. 

The film tells of Rocket’s friends’ quest they undertake to save him. It also shows us some background information about him. The fans were enchanted to finally learn more of Rocket’s background, a protagonist so mysterious until there. 

This saga is a must watch, especially this movie. It makes you open your eyes to animal suffering and the extremist search for perfection. Don’t think you’ll finish this movie without shedding a tear. Nevertheless, the tears will be worth it. 


2. The Little Mermaid, Released May 26

The famously animated film released in 1989 based on Hans Anderson’s book, The Little Mermaid is now adapted into a live-action movie. After The Lion King, Cinderella, Beauty and the Beast, and a few others, it’s now the turn of The Little Mermaid to be in the spotlight again. 

Directed by Rob Marshall, this movie explains the story of a young mermaid, Ariel, who falls in love with the human she saved from drowning. After her father sees her staring at Eric, the human, he forbids her to even think about him. His reaction leads Ariel to meet Ursula, a cruel sea witch, and to make a pact with her. The young mermaid will turn into a human and will lose her voice for three days during which she has to receive “true love’s kiss” from Eric. If she succeeds, she will permanently be human. Otherwise, she will transform back into a mermaid and will be Ursula’s property. 

The intrigue is the same in the two versions, but we can still find some differences between them. 

And by differences, I don’t mean the controversy about Halle Bailey, the principal actress. Her skin color changes nothing about Ariel’s character. Do you even still care about skin colors in 2023? She fits so well in this role that there is no need for debate. 

By differences, I mean the lack of humor. Indeed, they tried at all costs to humanize this movie. Even if it means deleting the expressiveness of Ariel’s friends such as Flounder, Sebastian, and Scuttle. They also deleted Chef Louis and therefore the funniest moment of the animated movie: Sebastian’s escape from the kitchen where he almost turned into dinner. Given to The Wrap, Rob Marshall said it was too cartoonish and too much of a detour. 

Those scenes were replaced by many songs and dances. The creators of the film made this movie into a musical, bringing Broadway to life on the screen. If you’re a fan of musicals, go for it, this one is wonderful. 

To conclude this topic, The Little Mermaid isn’t the best-adapted movie of Disney, but is still a success. 


3. Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse, Released June 2

After all the famous Spider-Man movies, Sony created an animated film about this amazing hero. We follow the story of one Spider-Man in a world parallel to ours, Miles Morales. 

In the prior animated film, we learn about his debut as a superhero and his quest to close a gap in space-time through which other Spider-Mans from other universes arrived in his. 

In its recent sequel, directed by Joaquim Dos Santos, Kemp Powers, and Justin K. Thompson, Miles Morales discovers the existence of a Society that groups all the Spider-Mans through all the dimensions. The goal of this Society is to maintain order across the universes. However, the more Morales finds out about it, the more he’s suspicious. 

He realizes that there are certain algorithms that repeat themselves all the time. In the case of Spider-Mans, every time a member of their family is promoted to police captain, this person is killed. Knowing his father will become captain two days later, he does everything in his power to prevent him from his lethal destiny. The whole Society will therefore pursue him because changing the course of history is forbidden.

The artwork is amazing, it’s a brand-new style of animation that I love. You will never be bored as this film is full of energy and colors. 


4. Barbie, Released July 21

This famous movie directed by Greta Gerwig that was impatiently awaited was both hated and adored by Barbie fans. I feel like this movie is an in-between. Not enough feminism to impact adults’ beliefs, but too much to be correctly understood by the youth. That’s why I think adolescents were the best audience. We’re forging our beliefs and this movie helped a lot to make us an opinion. 

In this movie, we follow Barbie, Margot Robbie, through her quest to find her human. She leaves BarbieWorld, a world literally made of pink, and ventures into the human world with Ken, played by Ryan Gosling. This part is the best one. As she discovers this world, we can see all her hopes shattered about the place of women in our society. 

The movie makes us open our eyes and realize the inequalities still existing between men and women. Even if Barbie is PG-13, this movie is adapted for younger children. There is nothing inappropriate in it. I feel like parents who forbid their kids to watch this movie want to escape reality. 

In my opinion, children should understand how the world works as soon as possible. And our world is full of inequalities. The sooner children will be aware of the issues in society, the better they will be able to deal with them. 

Of course, too young children won’t understand all the important themes. This movie is not an adaptation of the animated movies. If this was the case, the movie wouldn’t have been well received in our society. The director couldn’t have done this film without making it feminist, which is a wonderful improvement.

If you like Barbie, the humorous tone, pink, and Margot Robbie, this movie is made for you.


5. Oppenheimer, Released July 21

Released the same day as Barbie, Oppenheimer is the extreme opposite. Where we had pink and laughter, we are now plunged into the heart of World War II, during the creation of the first atomic bomb. 

As the name of the movie says, the creator of this bomb was J. Robert Oppenheimer. In this film, we learn about the whole path of the physicist. It shows us all the decisions he took which led the world to the first atomic bomb. 

The story also teaches us about the mental difficulties he had. As a scientist, it’s a dream to realize such a complicated invention, especially being the first one to create it. However, as a human being, he is afraid of what will happen if his dream comes true. It’s why he’s tormented throughout the film. He’s doing his job, realizing his dream and serving his country, but he knows it will exterminate thousands of people. 

He feels guilty from beginning to end. Even if he didn’t decide to drop this bomb, he died knowing he changed the world forever. The threat of the atomic bomb will always hover over our heads. 

Christopher Nollan, the director, was well inspired when he hired Cillian Murphy to play Oppenheimer; he is perfect for the role. 

The movie is really well presented and so interesting. It’s definitely a film to watch. 


6. The Hunger Games: The Ballad of Songbirds & Snake, Released Nov. 17

Released a few weeks ago, the new Hunger Games is a huge success. After a four-film series adapted from three books written by Suzanne Collins, a prequel was made. 

The Hunger Games describes a dystopian world where the population is oppressed by the Capitol, composed of rich people, and is separated into districts in which fear reigns. To remind everyone who has the power, the Capitol maintains the Hunger Games. Every year, two persons from each district, a girl and a boy, are drawn to participate in the games. The goal is to be the last one alive. 

In the initial trilogy, we follow the story of Katniss Everdeen who will participate in the games. These books end with a huge war between the districts and the Capitol, chaired by President Snow, the worst enemy of Katniss. 

In the prequel, Francis Lawrence, the director, adapted the history of President Snow. In this movie, his youth is explained. Specifically,what happened during the 10th edition of the games. We learn about all the decisions he made which led him to madness and being elected  president. 

The only negative thing about it was the end. I found it to be too hasty and lacks clarification. Still,the film is really great. It still resonates with me since I first saw it. 

I think I’ll add my voice to those of the fans by saying that we want more. By that, I obviously mean the continuation of the prequel, but also the explanation of the original war, the first Hunger Games, Haymitch’s victory, etc.

I hope the author will continue to develop this world. In the meantime, go watch this movie!


7. Babylon, Released Dec. 23, 2022 (US) / Jan. 18 (Belgium)

I wrote all the released dates depending on the US. When I found out this movie happened last year here I couldn’t bring myself to abandon it. So, I will consider its release date as the Belgian one. After all, I watched it in 2023. 

Babylon is, given to me, one of the best movies ever made. In 1926, Margot Robbie, playing Nellie Laroy, and Manuel Torres, played by Diego Calva are two young people passionate about cinema and full of ambition. They meet at a party with all the biggest stars when they’re no one and struggle to survive. 

One of the first things Nellie says to Manny is “Honey, you don’t become a star. You either are one or you ain’t.” This  sentence already shows the goal of the movie. And, indeed, at this party they both reach their goal and are spotted and introduced onto film sets. They finally both made a place for themselves in the film industry, until the invention of the first talking film.  

We then witness the decline of the greatest moviestar of this time. Notably, John Conrad, played by Brad Pitt. They are all trying to adapt themselves to this new era but it’s done. Talkies have destroyed so many people’s careers. 

If you want to watch this amazing movie, which I recommend you to do. I feel like I need to warn you about the first set, the big party. The director, Damien Chazelle, tried to do a shocking beginning to make us realize the decadence and depravity of this world. He wanted to show how crazy the rich people were. Do not stop this movie because of the inappropriate beginning, you will lose the experience of the best film I’ve seen in years.

Babylon will be an important part of cinematic history in a few years. At the end, Damien Chazelle decided to add little sequences from a multitude of known films. It’s the end that makes this movie so amazing. 


I have nothing else to tell you about it. Except that for the first time, I cried in front of a movie. But I didn’t cry because it was sad, I cried because it was wonderful.

Well, I’m done and I have nothing to add. I’ll just leave you with one of the first dialogues between the two protagonists in Babylon

“I just love watching movies, you know?

I love watching movies too. You sit there.

And you’re watching the movie and… And you escape.”

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