2020 was one for the books. A lot of us made it, some of us didn’t, and so many of us are still trying to find our way. Through it all, there was some incredible storytelling this year. From the animated, to the emotional, to the unpredictable, here are my favorite films of 2020
10. Sonic the Hedgehog
I went in with very low expectations but Sonic was the heartwarming film 2020 needed. It’s fun, hilarious, and has great nods to the video game. Ben Schwartz is great as the voice of sonic and he’s supported by solid performances from James Marsden and Tika Sumpter. The start of the film is Jim Carrey as Dr. Robotnik. His over-the-top portrayal of one of video game’s best villains is what makes this movie work.
- The Gentlemen
To be honest, this film really grew on me. I liked it at first, but after several viewings, it has become one of my favorite Guy Ritchie films. Ritchie really puts his stamp on the film with non-linear storytelling and hilarious look at the criminal underworld. Hugh Grant steals the show as Fletcher. I’d watch an entire film around Fletcher and his antics.
- Justice League Dark: Apokolips War
DC’s live action films may be hit or miss but their animated films continue to be amazing. The film starts with a bang and never stops. Apokolips War has a lot of heart and emotion for an animated film. It’s what audiences hoped to see in WB’s Justice League film when they saw shots of Batman looking over a bombed out city [deep sigh]….maybe one day. Here’s hoping some of this magic can transfer into live action films.
- Palm Springs
I’m s sucker for time loop movies, I won’t lie. But this was a lot more than two people stuck in a time loop. The longer the film stays with its two main characters Nyles (Andy Sandberg) and Sarah (Cristin Milioti), the more you learn about them and them. It’s a wacky way of looking at how we spend/don’t spend the time we do have. It ended up being a lot more funny and charming than expected.
- Sylvie’s Love
This is one of the best feel good love stories of the year. Set in the late 1950s and early 60s with jazz as the backdrop is the perfect recipe for a story about love. It examines what it means to be loved and to allowed yourself to be loved unconditionally. Tessa Thompson and Nnamdi Asomugha’s chemistry is what makes this film so delightful.
- One Night in Miami
This fictional retelling about a night in Miami with Muhammad Ali, Malcolm X, Sam Cooke, and Jim Brown is riveting. Watching these men discuss what’s happening in America during this time is fascinating. Kingsley Ben-Adir is great as Malcolm X and Leslie Odom Jr. gives a fantastic performance as Sam Cooke – Odom Jr. gives a fantastic monologue about how he makes money in the music business.
- Da 5 Bloods
This is one of Spike Lee’s best films to date. This is a story about trauma wrapped in a tale about a group of men returning to Vietnam to claim gold that was buried during the war. The film anchored by incredible performances from Jonathan Majors and Delroy Lindo who gives one of the best performances of the year.
This is zombie outbreak film with some pretty scary zombies. A story about a man being in isolation during an outbreak is a little too on the nose for 2020. Oh (Yoo Ah-In) is stranded but gets some help from his neighbor Kim (Park Shin-Hye). It’s one of the best zombie films in years that really tackle the problems that come with isolation. Reminder: fast zombies that have some intelligence is the thing nightmares are made of.
- Promising Young Woman
This movie came in with a lot of hype and it lived up to it. Carey Mulligan is incredible and the story will have you cheering for the worst things to happen to people. It’s become one of my favorite revenge films. The final 30 minutes of this wild ride is the best 30 minutes I’ve seen on film in 2020. I can’t wait to see Emerald Fennell direct more feature films.
- Sound of Metal
Riz Ahmed gives an incredible performance as Ruben. You’re immediately immersed in Ruben’s struggle to keep his life together as he learns to navigate without his hearing – it’s such a personal and emotional journey. The scene when Joe (Paul Raci) is telling Ruben how cruel the world can be but how he needs to find moments of stillness is my favorite scene of 2020.