Well, that was a pretty crappy year, huh?

The introduction to my annual top ten list typically touches on a few key things, like themes that appeared organically across multiple movies. It usually cited a few films that just missed the cut (Sorry, The Old Guard!) and invariably came back around to the idea that no matter what else went right or wrong, it was still a great time for cinema.

Then came 2020, which brought an endless stream of bad news to many of us — including the movie business. Theaters around the world closed, some forever. Hollywood postponed almost all of its major releases for the summer, fall, and winter. The ones that held on struggled at the box office, prompting more delays. Artists, craftsmen, technicians, studio employees, and theater employees all lost their jobs by the thousands. For many of us, movies are our escape from reality. In 2020, reality was simply inescapable.

Nonetheless, while millions were stuck at home, cut off from the pastime and spaces they treasure, they found comfort, insight, thrills, and a little hope from the movies we did get in 2020, which were still exceptional in every way except the size of the screens they were played on. Sadly, I only saw one of the following ten titles (plus ten honorable mentions) in a movie theater. I hope one day I can change that. In ascending order, here are my picks for the best films of 2020.

Honorable Mentions (In Order of Preference): Another Round, Dick Johnson Is Dead, The Trip to Greece, The Assistant, Crazy World, Palm Springs, Bad Education, Bacurau, Eurovision Song Contest: The Story of Fire Saga, The Nest.

Gallery — Our Favorite Movies From the Past Decade:

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