#Bestof2017 | At the Box Office: Of Superheroes, Murder Mysteries, Pirates – and Fangirl Feels!


It’s that time of year again. We’ve come to the end of another year. Another year in which there have been good and bad stories at the local box office.

Each year, Finding Wonderland gushes over our favorite box office films of the year. This year, looking back, I realize many I’m about to talk about probably are not what the discerning “critic” would call a film worth being on any kind of “best of” lists. But as I’ve oft said, I’m an easy-to-please viewer. I fangirl over what brings me joy. The scenes, moments or stories that make me smile. Those, to me, are the kinds of stories worth ten of the artistic films that win those coveted gold statues.

For me, what makes a cinematic story great does, yes, consider the cinematography and acting. Costumes and sweeping scores, but at the basic level, it’s all about how the story makes me feel. Are the characters sent on a worthwhile and meaningful journey? Does the film make me laugh out loud, forgetting life for a while? Is there chemistry between the lovebirds? All these things and more affect my opinion.

This year, more of the same populated the box office. Superheroes have yet to be dethroned (not that I’m complaining), sequels still seem to be in demand yet, and then there are the quieter dramas that hit the viewer with all the feels. Included below are big screen films and small screen offerings. (One entertainment I don’t talk about below are any Hallmark films, but let me know if you’d ever like to see anything in this same format on those!)

If anyone is wondering about the favorite books of 2017, never fear, this list is also coming. “Part one” of the 2017 favorites usually goes to the cinematic stories, and “part 2” (because books are deserving of all the extra love) will be the favorite works of fiction.

For now, let’s turn the spotlight on the movie masterpieces (as judged by moi) of 2017.

Best of 2017: At the Box Office

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1. Beauty and the Beast (2017) | You knew there was no way this one would not be on the list, right? Amazon Video

2. Carrie Pilby | Based on the YA novel of the same name, this little factoid is something I didn’t realize when settling in to watch this one. Now I know this, I’m thinking an eventual read of said novel is in order. Amazon Video

3. Everything, Everything | Adapted from Nicola Yoon’s best-selling novel, this film is delightful – and is adapted very well. Amazon Video

4. Fallen | I went into this hoping I’d like it, but I walked away surprised by how much I actually did enjoy this one. Based on the best-selling novel by Lauren Kate (yes, that’s the one), this film, overall (the end gets a little silly), really impresses. Though I’ve not read the book, the production, romanticism and cast all impress. Amazon Video

Best of 2017
5. Gifted | I’d be lying if I deny the Marvel fangirl in me isn’t already dreading the day Chris Evans leaves behind Captain America (the one we fell in love with in ‘First Avenger’). That said, if he must leave, it’s these kinds of films and roles he equally excels in. Amazon Video6. Home Again | I know. I feel like many of you will think adding this one is… well, silly. That said, I really enjoyed this one. Perhaps what I like best is that it’s so unusual from the romcom normal. It thinks outside the box, and I admire that. Sometimes I want a simple and entertaining film with nothing more to it. (Remember, like I said, I’m a simple girl when it comes to entertainment. *Smile*) Amazon Video

7. Murder on the Orient Express (2017) | For those who haven’t seen this one, I will say, yes, this one is slow moving, but it’s so gorgeous! Amazon Video (Preorder)

8. Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man Walking | Though it took me nearly the entire year (or the latter half of 2017 anyway) to see this one, finally I did. Good thing for me I did because this one deserves all the love – it’s, plain and simple, a fabulous and adventurous escapism flick sure to please avid ‘Pirates’ fans. Amazon Video

9. This Beautiful Fantastic | Quirky, yes, but completely adorable, this Indie film stars our Downton Abbey favorite Jessica Brown-Findlay (aka Lady Sybil). Amazon Video

10. Wonder Woman | Though I did not have the same reaction
to this film as the majority of the female audience did, I won’t deny I still enjoyed Wonder Woman. Without question it’s the best DC Comics has released thus far. Amazon Video

11. The Zookeeper’s Wife | Dark historical biopics aren’t usually my thing, but this film IS beautiful in its own way. Plus, the performances are fulfilling to what these historical figures must have been going through – or at least the “overreaching” idea and feel is accomplished brilliantly. Amazon Video



1. The Brave (NBC) | After binge-watching the first nine episodes of this show, I’ll tell you one thing, if this one doesn’t receive more episodes, I’ll be one sad girl. Also, this was the one military show I expected to like least. Turns out – in my opinion, it’s the best of the three. Amazon Video

2. A Christmas Prince (Netflix) | Sweet and romantic, this one makes me smile each time I think of it.

3. Emerald City (NBC) | Adding this one may not see “quite right” in comparison to some of the TV shows available, but I did so enjoy it. Plus, as I said earlier, sometimes we need “entertaining” TV that allows us to “unplug.” Amazon Video

4. Endeavour (ITV) | Quiet, slow and clever, 2017 is the year we discovered the British detective series Endeavour. Whether or not I should admit this, I’ll confess: we binge watched the first three series in the span of a week… or was it a week and a half? Way to entice Amazon Prime. Amazon Video

5. Jane Eyre (BBC) | After numerous recommendations and the anticipation I had to see this one, finally, 2017 marked the year I watched the BBC miniseries of the Gothic classic. Over ten years after its release, and I understand why it’s loved.

6. My Mother and Other Strangers (BBC) | Flawed though this one is, I found it really interesting; not only the historical configurations, but also the characterizations. Of course, the production being from BBC doesn’t hurt a thing nor does the supremely talented cast. Amazon Video

7. Sherlock Series Four (BBC) | Brilliant. Much as I want to, I don’t know I can say anything else. Sherlock, Season Four on DVD

That’s a wrap on today’s “Best of 2017” trip to the box office!! Tell me about your favorite cinematic finds this year? Did you enjoy some new Indie discoveries? Did you love the blockbusters at the box office? Tell me which of these you’d pick as favorites. Let’s get our fangirl chat on!

Thank you for visiting Finding Wonderland 

About Rissi JC

amateur graphic designer. confirmed bookaholic. bubbl’r enthusiast. critical thinker. miswesterner. social media coordinator. writer.


    1. It really is, isn't it? I was very impressed with 'Orient' though will confess I don't have a reference by which to compare it.

      Merry Christmas to you as well, Kathy!! Hope your season is full of merry and bright joys. :)

  1. Beauty and the Beast, Wonder Woman, and Sherlock were awesome! I'm planning on watching Everything, Everything, Emerald City, and A Christmas Prince (not my usual type of show but Rose McIver's in it). I'd also add Grantchester season 3, Poldark season 3, and Stranger Things season two to your list. :)

    1. BATB is absolutely beautiful. In fact, I've no idea how it is that I've NOT yet watched my DVD copy. :)

      Of course, I'm also 100% a fan of Wonder Woman (DC's best yet I think) and Sherlock hasn't disappointed me yet.

      Hope you enjoy those you still plan to see, Lauren. Let me know what you think when you do.

      How did I miss Grantchester!!! That is an AMAZING show for sure. :D

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