There were plenty of fantastic movies to see in 2017, and just as many entertaining ones to joke about on social media, where cinematic memes once again flourished with insane abandon. Almost by definition, these viral phenomena can’t be premanufactured by studios — to truly catch the public’s loopy imagination, they have to spring forth organically from some absurd starting point. And spring forth they most certainly did, from unexpected places and with unlikely actors and characters taking center stage. They made us laugh, they made us shake our heads, and they made us retweet — these are the best movie memes of the year.
Christopher Plummer in everything
Ridley Scott’s decision to quickly replace Kevin Spacey with Christopher Plummer in All the Money in the World was a stunning decision, and so well received that it sparked the same idea in millions of people — namely, solve every problem by inserting Plummer into the equation. Including having him sub in for all of Spacey’s prior performances. Hilarity ensued.
Call Me by Your Name dance
Sony may have taken most of these down, but Armie Hammer’s ecstatic Call Me by Your Name dance moves were so beloved, they inspired people to set his boogying to their favorite songs — almost all of which, strangely enough, meshed perfectly with the beat of his feet.
Hi guys I can't sleep so this happened pic.twitter.com/WL6gyGnU1h
— A Die Hard Christmas (@FirstKnivesClub) October 12, 2017
Despite being one of the year’s most poorly received films, The Snowman had an ad campaign — featuring a stick-figure snowman drawing with the message “Mister Policeman, you could have saved her, I gave you all the clues” — that immediately spawned all manner of mock jobs. It’s the slogan that keeps on giving.
mister police. you could have saved her. i gave you all the clues. pic.twitter.com/HMSaqGAYPU
— Quentin Norris is a Christmas Movie (@ZombiMonkey9001) October 20, 2017
Get Out challenge
Sometimes, all it takes is a single moment in a popular movie to start an out-of-the-blue fad — like with the #GetOutChallenge, which involved people reenacting the scene in which a groundskeeper suddenly races toward, and then by, Daniel Kaluuya’s protagonist (and the camera).
Pennywise’s appearance in the sewers at the start of It is such an iconic horror sight, it was destined for meme-ification. True to form, the internet came up with some doozies — including a few aimed straight at our current commander-in-chief.
— IconoClad (@Iconoclad) October 11, 2016
Sometimes, there’s just no rhyme or reason to explain why a certain old-school movie phrase catches on like internet wildfire. Exhibit A: Star Wars prequel baddie Chancellor Palpatine, who became a ubiquitous online presence thanks in large part to his line “Did you ever hear the tragedy of Darth Plagueis the wise?”
Far more predictable was the internet’s embrace of porgs, those furry, screamy puffin-like alien whatsits that populate Rian Johnson’s The Last Jedi. Their best memes, however, went a step further than just praising their cuteness — as in the mash-up below targeting one of the franchise’s prior high-profile CGI creatures.
— Park! The Herald Angels Sing! (@GenePark) October 10, 2017
Meryl Streep finishing song lyrics
Mamma Mia! may have called into question Meryl Streep’s pipes, but that didn’t stop the Twitterverse from turning an award-show photo of her into a meme in which she finishes various song lyrics. A cover-song album from the Oscar winner can’t be far behind.
Britney: my loneliness is killin me
Me: AND I!
Britney: I must confess, I still believe
Me: STILL BELIEVE! pic.twitter.com/VSvdcsepKK
— EMANUEL (@blingspice) March 18, 2017
While the Babadook’s outfit makes him resemble horror cinema’s version of Diane Keaton, the internet decided that, in fact, the specter was a symbol of gay pride — which led to some serious meme ridiculousness, including a guest spot on RuPaul’s Drag Race.
Most people have never even seen the most iconic workroom entrance in Drag Race herstory pic.twitter.com/YMUnzIPGR8
— Jacob (@ReginAdeleRey) June 9, 2017
Nicolas Cage in Kazakhstan
Nicolas Cage is the all-time king of movie memes, and he easily retained that title in 2017, courtesy of a photo of him in Kazakhstan alongside the country’s first lady while attending the 13th Eurasia International Film Festival. As befitting the image’s gloriousness, it soon led to a Photoshopping spree that still has us laughing.
Nicholas Cage in Kazakhstan in our traditional attire lmao pic.twitter.com/MAAWpB8skC
— Adil4Real (@adil_4_real) July 23, 2017
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