10. Admiral Holdo - Star Wars Episode VIII: The Last Jedi
Star Wars: The Last Jedi is the most surprisingly polarizing movie of the year. Whatever you think of it, Rian Johnson has a very clever trick up his sleeve for developing his characters. Each one of the protagonists is paired up with a supporting character they can learn a valuable lesson from - i.e. Finn and Rose, Rey and Luke. Oscar Isaac's Poe Dameron, who was already a fan favorite after his breakout in The Force Awakens, was paired up with Laura Dern's implacable Admiral Holdo.
Admiral Holdo first appears immediately after a good number of the rebellion command are unceremoniously wiped out. Her appearance is immediately striking - like a purple haired Mon Mothma, she seems more regal than you expect from a renowned battle commander. And throughout the course of this B-Plot, the hotheaded Poe comes up against her time and time again in a battle of emotion vs. experience. While this plot could have benefited from a little more transparency on the part of the Admiral, it's clear she was in the right: Poe is a pilot used to leading by example in times of great stress, not letting cooler heads prevail.
During Poe's attempted mutiny, it's easy to be on his side (Isaac's charisma definitely helps), but at the end of the day Holdo owns the crucial end of The Last Jedi's space standoff. After a heartbreaking farewell to Leia (largely written by Carrie Fisher, according to Johnson), Holdo makes a critical battle decision that creates one of the most awe-inspiring visuals in the Star Wars saga. She doesn't go out with a bang or a whimper, just deadly silence.
Self-evidently a man who writes for the Internet, Robert also writes films, plays, teleplays, and short stories when he's not working on a movie set somewhere. He lives somewhere behind the Hollywood sign.