Top 100 Films of the Decade: 2010-2019

If you asked me in 2010 which studios’ films would be amongst my favorites over the next ten years, I probably would have answered two correctly: Fox Searchlight (11) and Sony Pictures Classics (7). Those are two independent shingles of big Hollywood names that have been pumping out quality pictures for decades. Next up would have been The Weinstein Company (5), Warner Bros. (4), Paramount (4), Universal (4), and Sony Pictures (3) because they were cinema. So why are they barely beating those other two combined? Because the game changed.

A24 (9) hit the scene in 2012 and bet big on artists. Drafthouse Films (3) bowed in 2010 before pivoting to NEON (3) in 2017. Magnolia (6), IFC Films (5), and Oscilloscope (3) kept growing. And the streamers arrived with Amazon (4), Netflix (2), and Hulu (1) providing top-tier content.

It’s only going to get wilder as the behemoth that is Disney/Fox unveils its strategy while A24, NEON, and the like continue to fill the void Weinstein has left. I hope it all becomes even more chaotic than it already is because it means money will be thrown at filmmakers of all genders, sexuality, and backgrounds to bring audiences unique visions unlike any we’ve seen before. More competition is never a bad thing (especially when the likes of Disney continue seeking to destroy it).

Until then, however, here are the 100 films (in alphabetical order) that left their mark on me the past ten years. I cheated a bit by simply compiling all my revised Top 10s together, but the margin of error between a #8 selection and a #15 is so small that having a built-in cutoff didn’t sacrifice much (while saving me increased levels of stress whittling things down). I’m pretty happy with the mix. And if you’re desperate to know what my #1 is … just look at the header image. (It’s Barry Jenkins’ Moonlight.)

Au revoir, 2010s.


12 Years a Slave

2013 | Steve McQueen | Fox Searchlight Pictures

★ ★ ★ ★ | Review

50/50

2011 | Jonathan Levine | Summit Entertainment

★ ★ ★ ½ | Review

The Act of Killing

2012 | Joshua Oppenheimer | Drafthouse Films

★ ★ ★ ★ | Review

Ain’t Them Bodies Saints

2013 | David Lowery | IFC Films

★ ★ ★ ½ | Review

American Animals

2018 | Bart Layton | The Orchard

★ ★ ★ ½ | Review

Aniara

2019 | Pella Kågerman & Hugo Lilja | Magnolia Pictures

★ ★ ★ ½ | Review

Arrival

2016 | Denis Villeneuve | Paramount Pictures

★ ★ ★ ★ | Review

Beasts of the Southern Wild

2012 | Benh Zeitlin | Fox Searchlight Pictures

★ ★ ★ ½ | Review

Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance)

2014 | Alejandro G. Iñárritu | Fox Searchlight Pictures

★ ★ ★ ★ | Review

Black Swan

2010 | Darren Aronofsky | Fox Searchlight Pictures

★ ★ ★ ★ | Review

Blue Valentine

2010 | Derek Cianfrance | The Weinstein Company

★ ★ ★ ★ | Review

Call Me By Your Name

2017 | Luca Guadagnino | Sony Pictures Classics

★ ★ ★ ★ | Review

Calvary

2014 | John Michael McDonagh | Fox Searchlight Pictures

★ ★ ★ ★ | Review

Carlos

2010 | Olivier Assayas | IFC Films

★ ★ ★ ½ | Review

Carol

2015 | Todd Haynes | The Weinstein Company

★ ★ ★ ★ | Review

Cloud Atlas

2012 | Tom Tykwer, Lana Wachowski & Lilly Wachowski | Warner Bros.

★ ★ ★ ½ | Review

Coherence

2014 | James Ward Byrkit | Oscilloscope

★ ★ ★ ½ | Review

The Diary of a Teenage Girl

2015 | Marielle Heller | Sony Pictures Classics

★ ★ ★ ½ | Review

Dunkirk

2017 | Christopher Nolan | Warner Bros.

★ ★ ★ ★ | Review

Enemy

2014 | Denis Villeneuve | A24

★ ★ ★ ½ | Review

Ex Machina

2015 | Alex Garland | A24

★ ★ ★ ½ | Review

The Farewell

2019 | Lulu Wang | A24

★ ★ ★ ½ | Review

The Fighter

2010 | David O. Russell | Paramount Pictures

★ ★ ★ ½ | Review

First Man

2018 | Damien Chazelle | Universal Pictures

★ ★ ★ ½ | Review

For Sama

2019 | Waad Al-Kateab & Edward Watts | PBS

★ ★ ★ ½ | Review

Frances Ha

2013 | Noah Baumbach | IFC Films / Sundance Selects

★ ★ ★ ½ | Review

Fruitvale Station

2013 | Ryan Coogler | The Weinstein Company

★ ★ ★ ★ | Review

Fury

2014 | David Ayer | Columbia Pictures / Sony Pictures Releasing

★ ★ ★ ½ | Review

Get Out

2017 | Jordan Peele | Universal Pictures

★ ★ ★ ½ | Review

Gisaengchung [Parasite]

2019 | Bong Joon-ho | Neon

★ ★ ★ ★ | Review

Hell or High Water

2016 | David Mackenzie | CBS Films

★ ★ ★ ½ | Review

Hellion

2014 | Kat Candler | IFC Films / Sundance Selects

★ ★ ★ ★ | Review

Her

2013 | Spike Jonze | Lionsgate

★ ★ ★ ★ | Review

High-Rise

2016 | Ben Wheatley | Magnolia Pictures

★ ★ ★ ★ | Review

Holy Motors

2012 | Leos Carax | Indomina Releasing

★ ★ ★ ½ | Review

Honey Boy

2019 | Alma Har’el | Amazon Studios

★ ★ ★ ½ | Review

Hunt for the Wilderpeople

2016 | Taika Waititi | The Orchard

★ ★ ★ ½ | Review

I Am Not Your Negro

2016 | Raoul Peck | Magnolia Pictures

★ ★ ★ ★ | Review

If Beale Street Could Talk

2018 | Barry Jenkins | Annapurna Pictures

★ ★ ★ ★ | Review

Inception

2010 | Christopher Nolan | Warner Bros.

★ ★ ★ ★ | Review

Inch’Allah

2012 | Anaïs Barbeau-Lavalette | Entertainment One

★ ★ ★ ½ | Review

Inside Out

2015 | Pete Docter | Disney / Pixar

★ ★ ★ ★ | Review

Intouchables [The Intouchables]

2011 | Olivier Nakache & Éric Toledano | The Weinstein Company

★ ★ ★ ★ | Review

Io sono l’amore [I Am Love]

2010 | Luca Guadagnino | Magnolia Pictures

★ ★ ★ ½ | Review

It Comes at Night

2017 | Trey Edward Shults | A24

★ ★ ★ ½ | Review

Jackie

2016 | Pablo Larraín | Fox Searchlight Pictures

★ ★ ★ ★ | Review

Jagten [The Hunt]

2013 | Thomas Vinterberg | Magnolia Pictures

★ ★ ★ ½ | Review

James White

2015 | Josh Mond | The Film Arcade

★ ★ ★ ★ | Review

Jusqu’à la garde [Custody]

2018 | Xavier Legrand | Kino Lorber

★ ★ ★ ★ | Review

Lady Macbeth

2017 | William Oldroyd | Roadside Attractions

★ ★ ★ ½ | Review

Leave No Trace

2018 | Debra Granik | Bleecker Street Media

★ ★ ★ ★ | Review

Looper

2012 | Rian Johnson | TriStar Pictures / Sony Pictures Releasing

★ ★ ★ ★ | Review

Luce

2019 | Julius Onah | Neon

★ ★ ★ ★ | Review

Mad Max: Fury Road

2015 | George Miller | Warner Bros.

★ ★ ★ ½ | Review

Madeline’s Madeline

2018 | Josephine Decker | Oscilloscope

★ ★ ★ ½ | Review

Manchester by the Sea

2016 | Kenneth Lonergan | Amazon Studios

★ ★ ★ ★ | Review

Marriage Story

2019 | Noah Baumbach | Netflix

★ ★ ★ ★ | Review

The Master

2012 | Paul Thomas Anderson | The Weinstein Company

★ ★ ★ ★ | Review

Melancholia

2011 | Lars von Trier | Magnolia Pictures

★ ★ ★ ★ | Review

Midnight in Paris

2011 | Woody Allen | Sony Pictures Classics

★ ★ ★ ½ | Review

Minding the Gap

2018 | Bing Liu | Hulu

★ ★ ★ ★ | Review

Moonlight

2016 | Barry Jenkins | A24

★ ★ ★ ★ | Review

Mudbound

2017 | Dee Rees | Netflix

★ ★ ★ ★ | Review

Never Let Me Go

2010 | Mark Romanek | Fox Searchlight Pictures

★ ★ ★ ★ | Review

Oslo, 31. August [Oslo, August 31st]

2011 | Joachim Trier | Strand Releasing

★ ★ ★ ½ | Review

ParaNorman

2012 | Chris Butler & Sam Fell | Laika Entertainment / Focus Features

★ ★ ★ ½ | Review

Pariah

2011 | Dee Rees | Focus Features

★ ★ ★ ★ | Review

The Perks of Being a Wallflower

2012 | Stephen Chbosky | Summit Entertainment

★ ★ ★ ½ | Review

Portrait de la jeune fille en feu [Portrait of a Lady on Fire]

2019 | Céline Sciamma | Neon

★ ★ ★ ★ | Review

A Quiet Passion

2017 | Terence Davies | Music Box Films

★ ★ ★ ½ | Review

Rabbit Hole

2010 | John Cameron Mitchell | Lionsgate

★ ★ ★ ½ | Review

Relatos salvajes [Wild Tales]

2014 | Damián Szifron | Sony Pictures Classics

★ ★ ★ ½ | Review

Rundskop [Bullhead]

2011 | Michaël R. Roskam | Drafthouse Films

★ ★ ★ ½ | Review

Saul fia [Son of Saul]

2015 | László Nemes | Sony Pictures Classics

★ ★ ★ ★ | Review

Scott Pilgrim vs. the World

2010 | Edgar Wright | Universal Pictures

★ ★ ★ ★ | Review

Selma

2014 | Ava DuVernay | Paramount Pictures

★ ★ ★ ½ | Review

Shame

2011 | Steve McQueen | Fox Searchlight Pictures

★ ★ ★ ★ | Review

Short Term 12

2013 | Destin Daniel Cretton | Cinedigm

★ ★ ★ ★ | Review

The Social Network

2010 | David Fincher | Columbia Pictures / Sony Pictures Releasing

★ ★ ★ ½ | Review

Sound of My Voice

2012 | Zal Batmanglij | Fox Searchlight Pictures

★ ★ ★ ½ | Review

Spotlight

2015 | Tom McCarthy | Open Road Films

★ ★ ★ ★ | Review

Spring

2015 | Justin Benson & Aaron Moorhead | Drafthouse Films

★ ★ ★ ½ | Review

Spring Breakers

2013 | Harmony Korine | A24

★ ★ ★ ½ | Review

The Standoff at Sparrow Creek

2019 | Henry Dunham | RLJ Entertainment

★ ★ ★ ½ | Review

Steve Jobs

2015 | Danny Boyle | Universal Pictures

★ ★ ★ ★ | Review

Thelma

2017 | Joachim Trier | The Orchard

★ ★ ★ ½ | Review

Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri

2017 | Martin McDonagh | Fox Searchlight Pictures

★ ★ ★ ★ | Review

Toni Erdmann

2016 | Maren Ade | Sony Pictures Classics

★ ★ ★ ★ | Review

Transit

2018 | Christian Petzold | Music Box Films

★ ★ ★ ½ | Review

The Tree of Life

2011 | Terrence Malick | Fox Searchlight Pictures

★ ★ ★ ★ | Review

Under the Skin

2014 | Jonathan Glazer | A24

★ ★ ★ ½ | Review

Upstream Color

2013 | Shane Carruth | erbp

★ ★ ★ ★ | Review

Waves

2019 | Trey Edward Shults | A24

★ ★ ★ ★ | Review

We Need to Talk About Kevin

2011 | Lynne Ramsay | Oscilloscope

★ ★ ★ ★ | Review

Whiplash

2014 | Damien Chazelle | Sony Pictures Classics

★ ★ ★ ★ | Review

Wildlife

2018 | Paul Dano | IFC Films

★ ★ ★ ½ | Review

The Witch

2016 | Robert Eggers | A24

★ ★ ★ ½ | Review

The Wolf of Wall Street

2013 | Martin Scorsese | Paramount Pictures

★ ★ ★ ★ | Review

Wonderstruck

2017 | Todd Haynes | Amazon Studios

★ ★ ★ ½ | Review

You Were Never Really Here

2018 | Lynne Ramsay | Amazon Studios

★ ★ ★ ★ | Review

List is also available on Letterboxd.


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